Archive for the 'Ministry Update' category

September 2017 Prayer Letter

October 2, 2017 1:34 pm

Dear Praying Friends,
On the heels of a wonderful trip to the Philippines, I spent three great weeks in Africa. There were 15 Deaf and 3 hearing saved on my trip. Others were challenged to be a witness to those God brings their way.

I am going to talk about each of the three countries that I visited in Africa in three successive letters. This letter starts in Ethiopia where I preached 4 times in a 3 day conference.

Prayer and Thanksgiving Conference
Eighteen deaf churches in Ethiopia gathered for three days of preaching and encouragement. This was the 28th year of the conference that the late Pastor Bizuayehu Assefa started. However, it was only the second meeting since Bro. Bizuayehu passed away just over a year ago. Of the 18 churches present, 16 were ones that Bro. Bizuayehu either started or trained the pastor who started the church.

For more pictures from Ethiopia visit: dpeach.com/ethiopia

Letter From Tsehai (Bizuayehu’s Widow)
Sister Tsehai sent a good letter summarizing the conference from their perspective. This is a letter being sent to the ministry’s current supporters. I wanted to send it to you as well. I appreciate you taking the time to read it. The picture to the right is me with Bro. Bizuayehu’s family.

Your Help Appreciated
Thank you for praying for my trip to Ethiopia. I encourage you to consider supporting the churches in Ethiopia. One of the churches in particular, the one that Bro. Bizuayehu was pastoring, is in need of continued support. In Addis Ababa, where the greatest concentration of Deaf in the country live, buying land is cost-prohibitive. Practically this means the church must rent a space for services. Currently their rent is a little over $300 a month. As with any place, that amount will continue to go up over time.

The church receives about $150 each month in support. This is about half of what they were getting when Bro. Bizuayehu died last year. The church is struggling to come up with the additional funds for rent and other expenses. I ask you to consider helping this ministry. As with any missionary endeavor, any money that comes in above their normal expenses will help them do that much more ministry in other places. I have a list of 18 names of men from the main church in Addis Ababa who are either ready to pastor a church or are in training to do so. What they lack is money to help them travel to towns and villages so they can get new works started in the country. Any money received above the expenses of the church can go towards a bus ticket to send a man to investigate the possibility of starting another deaf work and reaching their country for God. Your $20 a month can make a difference in reaching the Deaf in Ethiopia.

If you would like to support this ministry, send a check made out to BIO with Assefa in the memo line.

Thank you for your continued support!

A PDF version of this letter can be downloaded for printing.

Ethiopia Conference Letter

1:32 pm

[This letter was written by Mrs. Tsehai Mulugeta (the late Pastor Bizuayehu’s wife).]

Dear Friends,
Love and many greetings to you and your dear family in the most holy name of our Loving Lord Jesus Christ.

Part of the crowd for the conference.

Praise the Lord for the wonderful conference we had throughout the three days of August 25-27. The meeting was great and was a blessing to us all. Deaf groups from the region of Oromia (towns of Ambo and Nekemte) were unable to come due to rioting and lack of transportation. From other regions of the country more than 250 Deaf were gathered together and attended the conference. We thank God and glorify His name for Brother David Peach. Brother Peach was preaching and teaching the Word of God wonderfully. All the Deaf were so blessed and glad for him to come. They were filled with the blessings they received as they talked with one other. We thank God for bringing Brother Peach to us and allowing him to be a blessings to all. Everyone was very glad and praising the Lord. God is always good.

Two new Deaf accepted the Lord Jesus Christ and converted! Praise the Lord for the more than 10 backslidden Deaf returned back to the Lord. After the last sermon more than 30 Deaf stood and promised to witness to other Deaf in their home areas who have not heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Praise the Lord!

Brother and sister, this is a result of your prayers that the Lord has done great things in our Deaf ministry. Thank you for your continued prayer and financial support as well. We have received the gifts you have sent. May our almighty God bless you more and reward you many fold for your daily needs. Amen!

Please continue in prayer and stand by our side for future ministry as we do all for the glory of God together.

God bless you richly.

With Love, yours in Christ,

Mrs. Tsehai Mulugeta

 

March Personal Update

March 29, 2017 10:17 am

Thank you for taking the time to read this longer personal report. In my regular prayer letter I had a really good story that I wanted to share. As a consequence, all the personal stuff got bumped out. So here is the all family news and ministry info that didn’t make it into the regular letter.

January—Back to PCC

We took James back to Pensacola for his 4th semester at PCC. While were there we enjoyed time with family and friends. It is always an encouragement to see people who have been serving in their places for 20 years or more. God doesn’t call everyone to stay in the same place for such a long time, but it sure is refreshing to see those who continue to eagerly serve the Lord where they are.

After the Florida trip, I was able to preach at Calvary Baptist Church in Sparta, Tennessee. Pastor Yockey is another one of those faithful servants of the Lord. We met about 20 years ago and he continues to faithfully serve the Lord. It was at Calvary that I preached a two-sermon series based on the same story that is in my latest prayer letter.

Eli and Katie Guiltner: Missionaries to Japan.

Missions Conference

We greatly enjoyed the missions conference at Faith Baptist Church in Jefferson City, Tennessee. We were not there as guest missionaries, but we were sure blessed to be a part of the week. This is the church we attend when we are home at the mission board office. At the conference we were reunited with old friends and made new ones. Ron and Sarah Smith are BIO missionaries serving in Cambodia. I love Ron’s consistency through the years that I have known him. The church already supports their ministry

Eli and Katie Guiltner were new missionaries for the church, but not strangers to our family. I met Katie several years ago when she was just starting to raise her support to go to Japan. You should take the time to listen to an interview I did with her in 2009. Though she’s now married and has a baby girl, her energy for ministry and passion for the Lord has not changed since we did that interview.

SMART training with missionaries and church members.

The Essentials of SMART Computing

At the Faith Baptist conference I taught a SMART class on basic computing. This is a ministry of our mission board to equip missionaries with the knowledge they need to be long-term servants of God. In the class I taught various things, but the biggest emphasis was on using a computer more efficiently and protecting the work they have already done so that the missionaries can be more productive.

A Temporary Good-bye

I had been concerned about the salvation of a friend. When he told me that he was going to go into Hospice care, I knew that was the best time to talk with him about his salvation since he was already thinking about eternity. When I asked him about his relationship with God he replied, “I’m good with God.”

I proceeded to lay out for him what the Bible said about being in good standing with God. He encouraged me to continue talking, but did not indicate either way whether he agreed with me or not. It was an awkward end to the conversation with him just staring at me and not responding. After a long stare he mischievously, in his ever playful manner, changed the subject with still no indication of what he was thinking.

I was very burdened and concerned for him, but while I consider him a friend, our relationship with one another has been a professional relationship. I had no appropriate way to see him outside of that relationship. When I heard my friend was back in the hospital (and it would be his last time), I drove an hour to visit him. I knew his wife was saved and that she would be at the hospital with him. I was pleased to talk with her and find out that she was confident in his salvation testimony. He was not in a lucid state when I visited, but his wife told me about when he was saved as a 12-year-old boy at a vacation Bible school class. I told her about the day I laid out the Gospel for him and that he would not respond either way. She assured me that he was playing with me and that he knew well what the Bible taught about salvation. I was relieved to get that information.

Getting ready to harvest goodies from computer printers.

Community Outreach

I had a good time earlier this month teaching a group of kids at our local library how to be hackers. No, not the kind you see on TV cracking into some secure network, but what I consider to be the real kind of hacker—a person who makes a piece of hardware or software do something that it was not originally intended to do. We tore printers apart and got motors and gears out of them for future robotics projects. I taught them a bit about what kinds of things can be harvested out of discarded technology so that it can be used and not sit rotting in a landfill. We did a class on basic electronic circuits and we made a couple of fun projects.

Though many of the kids at the classes were kids I had invited from church, we were able to build friendships with other children in our community that we can possibly minister to in the future.

Through previous community sign language classes that I taught at the library, we have seen a few visitors at church. This was my first time to specifically teach a community outreach class for children. I am excited to see how God might use it to bring others to Him.

California, Here I Come!

Bro. John Yingling (BIO President) and I will fly to California this weekend and spend a few days promoting missions and the board with the students at West Coast Baptist College. This is our first trip there and we are both excited about building this relationship with the school. I have several friends whose kids are at the school. I trust God will use this time to encourage the students to be involved in missions—whether it is through BIO or not.

Thank you for taking the time to come and read this longer (and less formal) version of my prayer letter. I know the official letter was quite a bit different than normal, but I have been so impacted by the life of Bro. Hamrick that I continue to think about those stories his children told even three months after I heard them.

Thank you for your prayers and continued involvement in our ministry.

March 2017 Prayer Letter

10:14 am

Dear Praying Friends,
At the end of last year I met a man, not on his deathbed, but at his funeral. I attended the funeral of a man I had never previously met—but I sure wish I had. Audley Hamrick was a career missionary working in New Mexico. I learned about him through stories that his five children told at the funeral. I wonder if these things could be said of you and me?

A Faithful Witness
Bro. Hamrick’s oldest son told the story of the hardest spanking he ever received. Bro. Hamrick spanked himself for an offense that the son had done. This was his way of teaching each one of the children that God took our punishment on Himself for our sins.

The youngest daughter told of a vacation trip she and her parents went on. She enjoyed a long, casual conversation with a stranger while her dad patiently waited beside her. As soon as she was done with the conversation, Bro. Hamrick stepped forward with a Gospel tract and began witnessing to the man. The daughter was convicted by the example of her dad’s concern for souls and how that she needed that same concern.

We should seek to use everyday events to share the Gospel of Christ with those around us. I had one such encounter last month when I witnessed to a friend who was near death but had never given me a clear salvation testimony. I was pleased to learn that he had accepted Christ as his Savior as a 12-year-old boy.

A Godly Example
The second child in the family told how patient and compassionate their dad was when she, in disobedience, led a group of other teenagers on a hike and got them stuck on the side of a mountain. In the dark, Bro. Hamrick climbed the rock face to rescue the group of kids. In his quiet, gentle way, he taught the lesson that God is patient and forgiving with us even when we are disobedient.

Another son told how, that as an adult who was frustrated and impatient with his co-workers, he sat down to read the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew. Even in his low-level rebellion against his parents, he began to see how his dad was a shining example of everything he read in the Beatitudes of Matthew 5. His attitude towards his parents and those around him began to change.

Finally, the third daughter told how that their parents were always willing to counsel the children and point them to the Lord—even when they crawled up in their parents bed in the middle of the night.

May we each look to God to help us be a witness and an example of what we learn in His Word. We should live out our lives in such a way that our children and the world around us can see that we are a child of God and seek to glorify Him. I look forward to meeting Bro. Hamrick in Heaven and thanking him for being such a powerful example for me.

For more personal news this month, please visit www.dpeach.com where I give a detailed report of the last couple of months.

You can download a printable PDF version of this letter.

March 2016 Prayer Letter

March 3, 2016 2:30 pm

Dear Praying Friends,
This new year has opened up a few new opportunities for us to serve the Lord in the ministry to the Deaf. As I’ve gotten focused on the work, I have been caught off guard as to how quickly time has gotten away from me. Recently I told a church that they were hearing my “new prayer letter” in person and that I would be writing the paper version in a couple of days. That was two weeks ago! Where has the time gone?

Sign Language Classes
As I did a few months ago, I am teaching a sign language class at two of our local libraries. In the previous class I was able to get one of the students interested in coming to church with us. She came faithfully for a couple of months but still has not made a decision for the Lord. We are praying that the Word of God will take root and that she and her children will accept the Lord.

I was asked to teach a class in an interpreter training program at Crown College in Knoxville. This is especially exciting since the majority of the students at the school are preparing to serve the Lord in local churches or on the mission field. I am thrilled at knowing that these students are serious about serving the Lord and about thoroughly preparing themselves in the area of deaf ministry.

Missions Conferences
We have recently been in two different missions conferences. One was at a church that has supported us for 16 years. It is a blessing to see many of the same faces that we first met so many years ago. The other conference was at the Campus Church of Pensacola Christian College. We were there representing our mission board as well as sharing our burden for reaching the Deaf. We talked with many students and enjoyed time with several old friends. Some are on faculty and staff at the school and others were classmates who have now been in faithful service as missionaries since we all graduated over 20 years ago.

Home
We are looking forward to a trip to Texas in a few weeks. We were asked to be in a missions conference in April that will take us to within a couple hundred miles of our home church. We look forward to visiting family and friends while we are there.

Ministry has been busy but enjoyable. We covet your prayers as we continue to train others in the work of sharing the Gospel with the Deaf.

A printable PDF version of the March 2106 prayer letter is available for download.

November 2015 Prayer Letter

November 23, 2015 1:52 pm

Dear Praying Friends,
Happy Thanksgiving! As Christians, we have much to be thankful for all year. I am truly thankful for the ministry God has called us to. That doesn’t mean the ministry is always easy, but it is comforting to know that we are in God’s will and He has a plan for all that takes place.

College
Our son James is now a freshman at Pensacola Christian College. He is almost done with his first semester. We look forward to spending Thanksgiving with him and my parents this week. James has grown tremendously in his maturity over the last year. We pray that God will use this time of school to continue developing him into the man God desires him to be.

PeruPerú
In October I needed to go to Perú. While it was a ministry trip with a specific goal, it turned out to be a personally enjoyable time. I have many friends in Perú and I enjoyed seeing a good number of them during my 3-week trip.

I preached 13 times in 7 different ministries. Six times were to the Deaf.

While in Perú I spent time with some friends from Argentina who were some of our best students when we were starting the deaf ministry in La Plata, Argentina a few years ago. This couple recently moved to Perú and are looking forward to greater ministry opportunities as they get more involved with the deaf community.

Interpreting
Stephanie and I are both continuing to enjoy a ministry as community interpreters. At times we aren’t called on much to interpret and other times we are almost overwhelmed with appointments. However, in the busyness of it all, I enjoy the opportunity to minister to the Deaf in a practical way. Recently, in a casual conversation with a deaf lady I had never previously met, I enjoyed seeing her face light up as she spontaneously shared with me her salvation testimony. Those are the times that I enjoy most about the many hours sitting and chatting while waiting for an appointment to progress.

We covet your prayers for our ministry. As with all missionaries, we enjoy when you can write a quick email and give us news about your ministry and tell us how we can pray for you too.

May God richly bless you during this holiday season.

A printable PDF version of the November 2015 prayer letter is available for download.

Peru Trip 2015

October 15, 2015 8:32 am

I haven’t said anything about my trip to Peru in any of my prayer letters because this trip was planned somewhat on short notice. Then when it did get scheduled it was nestled between a few other events that diverted my attention. But, I am a week into a three-week trip and you are just now reading about it.

Street scene

When I was here 24 years ago this road was all dirt. I don’t remember any buildings taller than 1 story on this street.

It is good to be back in my beloved Peru. I fell in love with Peru during my second trip here. That was in 1991. I spent 4 and a half months working at a church and school for the Deaf named Efata. Though my main purpose for being here isn’t Efata, they have been gracious in giving me a place to stay and providing me opportunities to preach to the Deaf. I really appreciate their offer of housing because I absolutely love being back here.

I am enjoying visiting many of my friends in and around Lima, but my main reason for being here is to spend some time with one of our BIO missionary families and see what I can do to help them and their ministry in various ways.

An added blessing is having some friends from the deaf ministry in Argentina who are also here at this time. My goal with them is to continue to encourage them in their work with the Deaf. I pray that as they are here in Peru they will get the extra training they seek as well as have a fruitful ministry among the Deaf.

I also get to play grandpa to their kids. After a visit with an older missionary couple this morning we are going to spend the day at the zoo. I pray that God will use this time of casual conversation to strengthen our relationship and that I can be a help to my friends in the ministry. I trust that God has us both here for a specific purpose and I want to be sensitive to what that purpose may be.

May 2013 Prayer Letter

April 30, 2013 9:27 am

Dear Praying Friends,
We have been in Mexico a month and are enjoying being with so many old friends once again. We are filling in for Bill and Jennifer Green with whom we worked to help get the deaf church in Mérida established. They are out of the country for three months and asked if I could preach for them while they were gone. It was an opportunity we did not want to pass up.

It is a blessing to see the church people growing physically and spiritually. Many of the core people in the church were teenagers when we left. Now most of them are grown and some have children!

Another exciting thing to see is the way the church has expanded far beyond our original contacts. Bro. Bill Green has done a great job of reaching out to parts of the deaf community that we had never contacted before. I believe the ministry is much stronger now that the circle of contacts has reached beyond the one small segment of the deaf with which we started.

We will be in Mérida until the middle of June. Please continue to pray for our safety and that God would use us to be a blessing to the work here in Mexico.

Recent Prayer Requests
I want to thank you for praying for the prayer requests that I mentioned from my recent trips. The camp in Costa Rica was wonderfully used by the Lord. There were many Deaf at the camp with various countries represented. There was even a news crew that came out to film some of the camp. The story aired on the national level. This was positive exposure for the ministry of Bro. Ramirez.

The ministry in Ethiopia is continuing to thrive. Bro. Bizuayehu wrote me this week and asked that we pray for their Resurrection Sunday celebrations. Ethiopia is on a very different calendar than the rest of the world. They celebrate the resurrection of Christ on May 5. They will have a special day of prayer and Easter programs in a few of the deaf churches. Pray that God continues to use the deaf works in Ethiopia for His honor and glory.

If you would like to support either of these ministries, or any BIO missionary to the Deaf, please contact me or the BIO office for information on how you can be involved.

PDF version of the May 2013 Prayer Letter

February 2013 Prayer Letter

February 27, 2013 3:04 pm

Dear Praying Friends,
Since our last letter, so much has happened and so much is about to happen! I have to wonder how I have been able to go two months without telling you all about it.

Costa Rica
The Costa Rica trip was wonderful. The trip had a couple of main goals and God worked in helping to accomplish them.

Primarily I needed to visit our BIO missionary Pablo Ramirez and his ministry. Pablo is a Costa Rican national who has been involved in deaf ministry for more than 25 years. Bro. Ramirez has a desire to reach his own people—both hearing and Deaf—with the Gospel. I was very impressed with the way he has structured his ministry. Though he has a deaf pastor, Cristian Muñoz, trained to run the deaf church, Pablo is still involved in helping other churches start deaf works to share the Good News with the Deaf in their areas.

Pray for Bro. Ramirez and Bro. Muñoz as they prepare for their annual international deaf camp which is scheduled for the week of March 25.

A dear friend of ours, Steve Blann, has assisted Pablo and Cristian in their camps for many years. He wants to meet the two men in the Dominican Republic for planning some future ministry outreach there. Steve has already raised the money for Cristian’s trip. If you would like to help me raise some trip money for Bro. Pablo, you can send a donation to the BIO office in his name. Be sure to designate it for the trip.

The second main objective of the trip was to introduce Bro. Dan Bode to the foreign mission field. This was his first time outside the US. He knows God has called him into ministry and he is seeking clear direction. The trip affected his heart towards missions and was spiritually beneficial. I enjoyed seeing how the Lord worked in his life during our time together.

Mexico
We are headed back to Mexico for the next three months! We leave March 7 and will return June 17. It is an honor to be asked to fill in for Bill and Jennifer Green while they return to the US. It also brings joy to our hearts to know that we are going back to visit many dear friends in Mérida. We will help keep the ministries of the deaf church going while the Greens visit churches and participate in the wedding of their daughter.

You can still reach us with our normal contact information. Email is probably the best way to get in touch with us while we are gone.

PDF version of the February 2013 prayer letter.

Costa Rica Trip

January 14, 2013 3:04 pm

Dan Bode (a friend from church) and I are going to Costa Rica on January 24 to visit national missionary Pablo Ramirez. Pablo has been a missionary with BIO for more than 20 years working with the Deaf. This will be my first opportunity to meet this faithful servant.

Pray that Dan and I will be a blessing to the Ramirez family and the other people we will meet. We look forward to preaching in deaf and hearing churches as well as ministering in any way Bro. Pablo would like us to. We plan to return February 4.

This is Dan’s first trip outside the US. He knows the Lord would have him serve in full-time ministry. He is unsure of exactly where or how he will serve the Lord, but he is eager to seek the Lord’s direction as he actively prepares himself for ministry. I am looking forward to the good fellowship as we serve together in Costa Rica.

Thank you for your faithful support. Because of you, this trip is almost completely paid for. There is a need of only $200 which I know the Lord will supply.