We started the month with saying good-bye to Lynn and Brenda Raburn. They were with us for two months. Brother Lynn worked very hard while he was with us preaching, teaching, and encouraging the churches. We are very thankful to be partnering with Lynn and Brenda with World Missions Ministry and for their partnership here with East Kenya Missions. The classes that Brother Lynn recorded on video in the past and continues to do in Swahili are awesome. Through the videos, he and Brenda continue to be a part of EKM even when they are on the other side of the world. Please pray for the Raburns as they continue to labor for missionaries and missions globally. Also, don’t forget that the World Missions Seminar dates have changed for 2016. The seminar will be held April 11-22 at Faith BC, North Little Rock.
516 Missions Preparations
John, Clayton, and I have been investing a lot of time on planning and preparing for the 516 Missions team that will be with us in July. The team will be working with the new church in Midiani and missionary pastor, Elly. We will be doing a sports camp at the school that is a quarter of a mile walk from the church, putting in a baptistery, and building a roof for the church. We have been working with Elly on plans and communicating with Brother Mike Vickers, who will be coming on the team, about supplies for building the roof. Ben Higginbotham will be leading the team this year and has prepared the team on the U.S. side.We are very excited to come alongside Grace BC, Midiani and Pastor Elly. Elly has done a great work in Midiani, and it has truly been awesome to see the Indigenous principle in action through Elly. He and the church in Miritini, and now in Midiani, have a vision and a heart for the gospel being preached. We are hopeful that the 516 team and EKM team partnering with them to do this camp will encourage and energize them.
We have spent much of this month making preparations for furlough. There is a lot that goes into shutting things down here and getting things ready on the U.S. side. We are blessed to have a team of support both on the ground here and at our sending church Pauline BC to help us. We will be departing July 23 right after the 516 Missions Team leaves. We will be in the States for almost a full year for our furlough. During our furlough, we will be seeing family and visiting supporting churches. I will be attending the Missionary Baptist Seminary working on my Masters Degree, and our children will be attending school in Monticello.
Ben Higginbotham has been working with several others in our church to get us set up in Monticello, AR. He has also been communicating with folks in the school system to help us know what we need to do to register the kids. Mrs. Paula Gathings from our sending church is providing our family with a place to call home while on furlough, and we cannot say thank you enough! Our church has also bought us a vehicle to use while we are in the states. We are so blessed to have Pauline BC as our sending church and friends who believe in what God is doing through this ministry, helping us and sacrificing to see it succeed.The team here on the ground has also been helping us prepare for furlough. I am so thankful to Brother John Strader for his hard work, many hours, and patience to help us put together a presentation that we can use in the churches to show all that God has done the past three years. Also I am grateful for our Missionary Helper, Ashley Johnston, and all the hours of work she has put into making picture books that we can put on display as we visit churches. We appreciate Clayton connecting us with his mother-in-law, Tammy, to help with our prayer cards and magnets. We praise God for everyone on the team here and how they have come together to help us with presentation preparation and even packing up our house.
Please pray for our family and for the rest of the team during our upcoming furlough. We are looking forward to sharing with the churches all that God has done and express our gratitude for their support. We also are excited to encourage and challenge the churches and individuals to consider how they can partner and participate with missionaries. The Straders and the Howells will be continuing here on the ground in Kenya during our absence. Pray for them as they continue with language learning and culture adaptation. Pray that this year will be a great time of growth and preparation for the future of EKM as we look at reaching the unreached North of Malindi.
PO Box 299 Monticello, AR 71657
James Taylor PO Box 811 Malindi, Kenya 80200
Phone 011-254-713289014 firstname.lastname@example.org
We said goodbye to old friends and hello to new friends at the beginning of this month. Lynn and Brenda left at the beginning of the month and then we enjoyed hosting our new friends from Garissa. The guys met the Witt family while they surveyed the North and invited them to come for a visit. They have four very sweet little girls who played till they were exhausted with our kiddos. We had such a wonderful time. Jason is quite the chef. He cooked several excellent meals for us; and Rebekah his wife was so kind and easy going, we hit it off first thing. We spent a full week with them enjoying fellowship, some worship time, and even picking their brains about reaching the unreached in their area. My only regret is that we won’t be here this next year to get to know them better. We do, however, look forward to the next year when we will be able to meet up again with them as we look to our future ministry in the North.
We had lots of birthday cake and ice cream this month. James celebrated his birthday on June 7. We had cake and ice cream that evening after fixing him some barbecue ribs. Josiah’s birthday was on June 8, so we had a sort of retro Super Mario Bros. video game party. I made his cake to look like an old Nintendo game controller. Our whole team dressed up like characters from the video game. I love that our team gets together to do silly things like dress up and be creative. It’s a fun way to step out of work mode and just enjoy our fellowship. Next we celebrated Ashley’s birthday. Ashley has actually celebrated 3 birthdays in Kenya. Ashley loves anything nerdy, so we made that the theme of the party. It was very fitting for the teacher. We all dressed like nerds and I spent the whole day making a cake that was the periodic table. It was a lot of work, but it’s something I really enjoy and so it was a labor of love. Everyone had a great time. Needless to say we may have all gained a few pounds this month from all the yummy sweets, but we’ll just stay off the scales for a while.
We are still in furlough mode, but mostly done with all the packing and sorting. We knew we were hosting the 4th of July cookout with all of our friends from Mombasa so we spent the end of the month making sure we had most of the work out of the way. Our goal is to be able to just enjoy the last couple weeks here without of the stress of packing, especially since we are leaving just two days after the 516 team leaves. I admit to having very mixed emotions about this furlough. It feels like our EKM team is just getting settled and starting to work and it’s time for us to leave. Although we need furlough and the time to see family and supporting churches, it feels like we are just beginning. We are, though, looking forward to this next year of refreshment as well as the direction God is going to give as we look to the future.
My sister received the results from her scan, she is leukemia free once again. I thank the Lord for giving her strength through her chemo. This round, although stronger, seemed a bit less hard on her. I am really looking forward to being within driving distance of her this next year.