Archive for the 'Ministry Update' category

October 2023 Prayer Letter

October 12, 2023 12:42 pm

Dear Friends,
Fall is upon us! This is the season of mission conferences and many opportunities to serve the Lord. Currently we are in the middle of a Bible conference in a deaf church.

Camp
The camp summer finished up great. I spoke at 4 weeks of deaf camp. Stephanie and I also spent a week at the Bill Rice Ranch as campers for their Deaf Adult Camp. It was an enjoyable week being with many of our deaf friends.

We saw 12 Deaf saved through the camp ministry this summer. I am encouraged by the reports of several of our missionary and evangelist friends who participated in various deaf camps and reading about the many Deaf saved and surrendered to the Lord.

Where Now?
In some ways it seems like we haven’t really been anywhere since the end of the summer. However, in the 7 weeks since camp ended, we have spent 5 weekends preaching to deaf congregations.

We will be gone ministering in other churches most of October. But until then, we are coming to the end of a 10 week sign language class we have been teaching in the church in east Tennessee that we attend. The students are doing well and we are excited about what the Lord may do through these classes as it relates to ministry opportunities.

Welcoming Timothy Pozo
into the BIO family with a lapel pin.

New Missionaries
It is great to see new missionaries headed to the field. At our Executive Council meeting last week we approved some new missionaries. The Smith family is starting their deputation to go to American Samoa. And Timothy Pozo is a young man working with our veteran deaf missionaries, John and Tricia Olson. Timothy is the son of deaf parents in Peru. He has been a great help to the Olsons in their ministry and we are glad to have him as a BIO missionary serving with them.

College Opportunities
Once again we will be participating in the missions conferences at a couple of college ministries. The first will be at The Campus Church of Pensacola Christian College in Florida. While this is a church event, we are given access to and speaking opportunities with the college students. Then we will be at Ambassador Baptist College in North Carolina.

These meetings will give us a time to catch up with some of the workers that I spent the summer with. Pray as we have continued opportunity to influence them for the Lord and His service.

David Peach

You can download a printable PDF version of this letter.

July 2023 Prayer Letter

July 7, 2023 3:28 pm

Dear Friends,
Thank you for praying about the Nigeria trip in April. Unfortunately, it did not take place due to paperwork problems and not getting a visa issued in time. This was not a surprise to God and we trust this was all within His plan. I’m still planning to make the trip when we can work out dates and get the paper work sorted.

Training School
We had a great Training School with our missionaries. Each year is a different dynamic based on which missionaries are able to attend. We had a smaller number of attendees this year, but the fellowship and sessions were great. There is a lot of information packed into those 4 days. Along with teaching some of the sessions, Stephanie and I interpreted for one of our deaf missionaries.

143 years of deaf ministry represented in our speakers.

Training School ended on a Thursday evening and I packed up the next morning to fly to Orlando. This was so I could be with one of our missionaries to the Deaf during the funeral of her dad.

Then it was back home the next day to get ready for my second of four weeks of camp.

Camp Time!
We completed our second week of deaf camp at the Bill Rice Ranch in Tennessee. I will be at the Ranch one more week this summer (July 10-14) and then go to their camp in Arizona, West Branch, the following week. Please continue to pray that God would use the speakers and staff to make an eternal impact on the Deaf.

We saw 41 people saved in the two weeks of camp that I have been in. Of those, 2 were from our deaf program. We were thrilled to learn that one of our deaf campers from the first week lead 4 other Deaf to the Lord in another camp she attended the following week.

Camp has had a great influence in my life as I am sure it has in yours. On a recent trip to Arkansas to present our ministry at a new church, we stopped by the camp that I spent my teenage years attending. Triple S Christian Ranch in Rose Bud, Arkansas is still going strong and seems to be faithful to the ministry that they have had for over 45 years. It was a blessing to spend a few minutes walking around the camp and visiting spots where I remember memorizing so many Bible verses.

New Support
We are grateful for new supporters over the last few months. This has been a help to us as we continue to encourage the missionaries working with the Deaf through BIO as well as expand our outreach to them and the Deaf they are serving.

Thank you for your continued prayers and financial support.

David Peach

A PDF version of this letter is available for printing.

September Prayer Letter

September 7, 2022 4:55 am

Dear Friends,
Imagine being in a room with 5200 people that God has given you a burden to impact for Him. That is exactly what August 1-4 of this year was for me at DeafNation World Expo. While we did not have 20,000 Deaf at the event, we had more than we could talk to in such a short time. In other words, we were plenty busy!

Bro. David Bennett (SWMI) praying with our team at the start of DeafNation World Expo.

I say “we,” because I was with a team of 35 friends representing Silent Word Ministries International (SWMI) as we handed out literature, gospel videos, tracts and had one-on-one witnessing opportunities.

God allowed our team to see 35 come to know Christ as Savior! Two other teams were there for the same purpose: Romans Road for the Deaf and Harvest Deaf Ministries. In total, the three teams saw 68 Deaf saved!

Bill Rice Ranch
Before I went to Las Vegas for the DeafNation event, I spent a couple wonderful weeks at the Bill Rice Ranch. It was my privilege to once again preach to Deaf young people in camp. This summer there were 12 Deaf saved. I only made it to 2 of the 4 weeks this year because of illness.

As you may already know, the Bill Rice Ranch experienced a fire in their administration building. While insurance should cover much of the reconstruction, there are certainly things that insurance will not replace. If you would like to make a donation to the Ranch for this need, or find out how you might be able to help with the reconstruction, you can visit dpeach.com/BRR22.

Allen Snare, Ronnie Rice and David Peach

Ronnie Rice
Our dear friend Ronnie Rice passed away in early July. It has been our privilege to know Bro. Ronnie for 33 years. He endured my earliest language mistakes as an interpreter. We spoke many weeks of camp together. We saw God do amazing things in the lives of young people. We traveled domestically and internationally together. And some of my most memorable stories involve Ronnie Rice. He was a faithful servant of the Lord. He will be missed.

Training School
Towards the end of July we had a good week with our missionaries in our annual Training School. More than 20 missionaries enjoyed a week of encouragement and necessary training. The fellowship was great; as always.

Venezuela Trip
I appreciate those of you who have asked about my trip to Venezuela. The trip has been moved to early December. Please pray that God would be glorified during this week and that the ministry will be strengthened.

Thanks for supporting us through prayer!

David Peach

A PDF version of this letter is available for printing.

June 2022 Prayer Letter

June 20, 2022 12:20 pm

Dear Friends,
Thank you for your prayers for, and financial partnership with, our ministry. We were privileged to participate in various ministries the last few months and look forward to the upcoming ministry opportunities.

Photo of the Parnell and Hartsfield families.
Parnell and Hartsfield families. Two couples from my home church who have impacted eternity. They are great influences in my life and ministry today.

Church Anniversaries
It was a blessing to be part of our sending church’s 50th anniversary. My family has been associated with the church for 43 of those years. At the event, the first missionary family that the church sent out, Jesse and Glenna Parnell, were on furlough from Uruguay and were the guests of honor. Mrs. Parnell is the one who sat down with me in November of 1979 and led me to the Lord!

The church we attend when we are home in Tennessee—Faith Baptist Church in Jefferson City—celebrated the pastor’s 30 years at the church. Bro. Mark Campbell came on staff as the youth pastor in 1992. He became the associate pastor several years later. After the former pastor’s death in 2015, the church called Pastor Campbell to be the senior pastor. Stephanie and I have been honored to be associated with the church since 2001. We are blessed to call Pastor and Mrs. Campbell our friends.

Summer Schedule
I am currently at the Bill Rice Ranch for the first of 3 weeks of deaf camp in Tennessee. I will go to their camp in Arizona called West Branch for a 4th week.

When camp is not taking place, there will still be plenty to do. Between weeks of camp we will be moving my mother from Pensacola, Florida to Tennessee to be near us. We will also have our annual training school with our missionaries.

DeafNation World Expo
The trip to DeafNation World Expo will be at the end of the summer. I have met some of the people who will be joining our team as I’ve been in churches this spring. It is great getting to know some of the people who will be joining us to pass out tracts, Gospel DVDs and engage in one-on-one witnessing during the Expo. Please pray for our group as we prepare to be in Las Vegas from July 30 to August 6.

We are thankful to those who have donated to the trip so far. I still need $1300 for the cost to be fully covered. Would you consider donating to the trip? A check can be sent to BIO with a note that it is for the Peach DeafNation trip. Or you can donate through PayPal at the BIO website. Again, make sure you note what the donation is for.

Venezuela Trip
I was contacted last year about helping an exciting new ministry with the Deaf in Venezuela. While I have provided information and some training through video classes, I have not had the privilege of going in person to see the work. Pray with me that God will give clarity of direction as I plan to make a trip to the country in September.

Thanks for supporting us through prayer!

David Peach

You can download a PDF version of the letter for printing.

August 2021 Prayer Letter

August 27, 2021 10:43 am

Dear Praying Friends,
What an amazing summer! Thank you for being part of God’s work with us.

Two young people that I led to the Lord at West Branch—25 years apart.

Four Weeks of Camps
I was again part of the deaf camps at Bill Rice Ranch this year. I preached and taught in four of the five different weeks of camp for the Deaf that the Ranch conducted.

During the first week of camp in Tennessee we saw 4 young people accept the Lord as Savior. My second week was spent in Arizona at their camp called West Branch. One boy was saved during the week and we heard that another camper was saved shortly after camp. While I was at West Branch, the Ranch saw 4 Deaf saved. I returned to the Ranch for the next deaf camp where there were 12 young people who accepted the Lord.

Stephanie and I both went to the Ranch for Deaf Adult Week. This is not a week in which we usually participate. We went as campers; however, it was my privilege to fill in for Bro. Ronnie Rice when he was unable to preach one of his sessions.

Training School
Between weeks of camp we had other meetings. One was our annual training school with our BIO missionaries. Stephanie and I interpreted each of the sessions as well as taught a couple of classes. Training school is always a busy, but enjoyable time. Besides our “out front” work during training school, we are also involved in several behind-the-scenes activities. Stephanie helps prepare and serve the meals and I take care of the technical aspects of the classes (video and audio recording as well as computer presentations).

I always look forward to going back to the slower pace of camp as soon as training school ends.

Other Events this Summer
Thank you for your prayers and words of encouragement concerning my dad’s death. Since our last letter, we had another service for Dad in Texas. This was held the same weekend as a school reunion that Mom, my brothers and my family attended. It was a good time to be together with old friends from the Christian school where I was saved.

We spent a week with Mom in Florida between weeks of camp. The BIO office is wondering if we are ever going to stay home. I’ve only been in the office 4 of the last 15 weeks.

Spain
Stephanie and I are going to Spain in October to be with one of our missionary families. I normally do these types of trips on my own, but she is able to go with me this time—one of the benefits of our children getting older.

Please pray that we won’t have any problems with COVID restrictions during the trip. If you would like to help with the cost of Stephanie being able to go, you can send a donation to our office with a note that it is for the Spain trip.

Thank you for your continued prayers and support. It is an honor to partner with you in serving the Lord together.

You can download a PDF version of this letter for printing.

Ernest Peach Memorial Services

June 11, 2021 2:22 pm

I was pleased with the two services we did in honor of my dad recently. I think he was honored and God was glorified (the two goals we had going into the first service).

Here are the two service videos.

NorthStone Baptist Church

The first service was held a couple of days after Dad died at the church where they have been members for several years in Pensacola, Florida, NorthStone Baptist Church. Pastor Johnson and I were the speakers for that service.

Calvary Baptist Church

Mom and Dad were long-time members of Calvary Baptist Church in Odessa, Texas. To make it easier for friends and family to attend who were still close to home, we held a second service a couple of weeks later at the church.

I was privileged to conduct that service. Several other friends and family spoke briefly during this service.

August 2019 Prayer Letter

August 10, 2019 6:44 pm

Dear Praying Friends,
The 19-year-old deaf girl exclaimed in understanding, “Oh. Oh! Oh!” That was all she could say when I showed—in signs—how that Christ was a substitute for our punishment by dying on the cross, even though He was innocent of sin and we were guilty. Her sudden, and vocal, understanding was at the end of the 10th message I preached at camp in Arizona a couple of weeks ago. This girl, along with a 14-year-old deaf boy, had traveled many hours on buses and trains from California to hear the Gospel presented in their native language: American Sign Language. When the light of their understanding turned on, it was moving to see how excited they got.

Tyler and Rebekah Thornton.
Tyler is the Deaf Camp Director
at the Bill Rice Ranch.

We had several other deaf teens and adults with us that week. The rest of the crowd was already saved and had been actively praying for the salvation of these two teens. Everyone else in the room was as thrilled as I was to see their response to a clear presentation of the Gospel.

That was the last week of my four weeks at deaf camp this summer. I was at West Branch that week but had spent the previous weeks of camp at the Bill Rice Ranch in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. West Branch is their camp in Williams, Arizona.

In the five weeks of deaf camp (4 in Tennessee and 1 in Arizona), we saw 17 young people come to know the Lord as their Savior! As I mentioned in my last letter, being part of camp ministry is such a blessing. I travel to churches today and regularly meet people who I met when they were teens coming to camp. It encourages me greatly in the ministry.

While I have spent at least part of 16 summers at the Bill Rice Ranch, I realize there are many other good camps. Let me encourage you to take advantage of sending your kids to camp or going to an adult retreat at a camp that can minister to you as an individual, couple, or family. And, would you consider working at a camp? There are many that could benefit from you volunteering a week or a summer to help them in some tangible way.

Training School
We had a wonderful training school with our missionaries in June. Three families attended with the intention of making application to be missionaries with us. We also had several veteran missionaries who took the time to fellowship with us and share things they have learned from the field that are beneficial to our younger missionaries and missionary applicants.

Upcoming Schedule
We will be home quite a bit the next two months. That allows us to catch up on some projects around the office and at home. Pray that God will give us wisdom in completing what we can and clarity to realize that some things we may have intended to do may not need to be done now, or at all.

Thank you for your continued prayers and financial support. We are able to do our ministry because of you.

You can download a PDF version of our letter for printing.

December 2018 Prayer Letter

December 12, 2018 1:20 pm

Dear Praying Friends,
It would be very difficult to tell of all the blessings and answers to prayer that the Lord showered on our ministry this last month. But I will summarize as much as I can by telling a couple of stories from my recent trip to Africa. [You can read about the preaching opportunities I had and my safe arrival home.]

Thanksgiving
I visited some friends for Thanksgiving who live in a closed country. While there, I met a man who has recently been saved out of Islam. To hear him tell of the joys of answered prayer made me cry. As a Muslim he prayed 5 times a day for as long as he could remember. Never once did he experience an answer to his prayers. Yet in the first few weeks of knowing Christ as Savior, he has prayed specifically for opportunities to share his faith with others and has seen God answer those prayers within the same day.

First, I cry tears of thankfulness because I am thrilled to see his joy and simple faith. But I also weep because his story makes me realize how casually I take prayer and sometimes think God isn’t listening.

I had not expected to meet any Deaf while I was there but my friend scheduled a meeting for me with a Muslim deaf man. Though our communication was limited—four deaf men and I played charades for three hours—there is now an opportunity for a return visit and a plan to share Christ with them more directly.

Bro. Wale praying with two deaf ladies for salvation.

Nigeria
My trip to Nigeria was phenomenal! I went there to be a help and blessing to the deaf churches. But, as is often the case, I think I was the one more blessed. Eight Deaf were saved in six preaching services. But there is so much more to the story than just the numbers.

I was in Nigeria nine years ago. At that time I met a hearing missionary, Wale Orekan, who was new to helping the deaf churches. He did not know sign language. He was doing what he could to encourage the deaf believers in the Lord since the recent passing of the founder of their churches. I also met five deaf church congregations who were struggling to keep things running without a clear leader. Most of these congregations had no permanent place to meet. I even met a young skeptical interpreter who had been hired to help the hearing missionary train new church leaders.

What I found this trip wast he same hearing missionary who now knows sign language and preaches to the Deaf without an interpreter. I saw the same five deaf churches that now have strong leadership and a permanent church location for their meetings (with the exception of one church that is still looking for land). And the young interpreter that I met nine years ago is now in full-time ministry and has started a new deaf school this year as the basis for the church congregation that he is assembling to lead as pastor.

God is doing a great work in the world!

I thank you for allowing me to be your eyes and ears to see what is going on and reporting back to you. It is a privilege to serve you in this way as I serve the missionaries on their respective fields.

MerryChristmas!

You can download a PDF version of the letter for printing.

NOTE: I have been intentionally vague about where my Thanksgiving trip took me. That does not mean I don’t want to talk about it, but I can’t put some things in print for the sake of the family I visited.

I am very eager to talk about my trip and would love to answer any questions you have. Please feel free to call me so that I can fill you in on how God is working in this spiritually difficult place.

Preaching Opportunities in Nigeria

December 10, 2018 3:08 pm

As my prayer letter is limited to a page that can easily be printed and posted to a church wall, I decided to include more details of my 2018 trip to Nigeria in a few different blog posts. If you would like to know more about my trip than what the December 2018 Prayer Letter contains, then read on.

Hearing Church Lagos

I was privileged to preach in the Independent Baptist Church of Festac in Lagos. This was their Thanksgiving Sunday. Testimonies and thanksgiving were given by each family that day. Particularly of how they had seen God work in their family over the course of the last year.

One of the encouraging testimonies for me was something that started nine years ago. One of the assistant pastors in the church talked about prayer and how he was thankful for 2 Thessalonians 3:1-2 and how it teaches us to pray for the work of God. He said that he is regularly reminded of those verses when he prays for missionaries and other people in the ministry. The reason this testimony was particularly encouraging to me is that he said I preached on those two verses when I was in their church nine years ago. It is always surprising and humbling to me when people remember something I taught on. Even more so when it has been almost a decade and the person thanks you for teaching them how to pray.

Deaf School Lokoja

One of my joys on this trip was to see a friend named Shola. When we met in 2009 Bro. Shola was a hired sign language interpreter for Bro. Wale. At the time Bro. Wale did not know signs and was just starting to help the deaf churches. Bro. Shola was a school teacher and the son of deaf parents. He knew signs well, but seemed to not be so sure about working with the missionary.

Shola and His Wife

Fast forward nine years and Bro. Shola is now the director of a new Christian deaf school. He is treating his 32 young students as his flock to pour his life and ministry into. Shola is fully surrendered to pastor the people God has given him. While they are primarily young school students, he also is reaching out to start a church among the Deaf in their town.

Lokoja Deaf School

We heard testimonies of students who have been saved. One has been used by God to lead his hearing Muslim mother and other family members to the Lord. Another pair of siblings who have been saved and are asking questions on how to tell their Muslim parents of the need for salvation. After that I was asked to preach and one young lady (maybe 16 years old) accepted the Lord after I gave a simple salvation message.

Ogun State Deaf Churches

There are five deaf churches in Ogun state that were started by the late Pastor Peter Ashade. Bro. Ashade was Deaf and used by God to see many Deaf saved and churches started. I was privileged to preach in all five of these churches.

Akeem and Me

The first of these churches that I preached in was in Abeokuta. There were 40 or so Deaf there and Samuel, a 20 something deaf man, came to be saved. I look forward to hearing from Pastor Adelu about the growth of Samuel.

I got a day off to rest at home before preaching at two deaf churches on a Saturday. The church in the morning was in Ilaro. About 20 attended the service and we had another young man saved, Akeem. He seemed to be very new to the church. I trust he will become faithful and grow in the Lord.

We moved to the church in Ota in the afternoon. Again we had about 20 Deaf who came to church. We did not see anyone saved during that service. This church has bought property and are building the church a block at a time as the Lord provides the funds.

Again on Sunday I preached at two different churches. The first church was in Sagamu. This is a church that does not have their own property, but it was the largest congregation by far. There were at least 80 people there that morning. They have graciously been granted space to hold their church services at a government school for the Deaf. Many of those in attendance were children from the school. There were three deaf ladies saved that morning.

Deaf Ladies Saved in Sagamu Church

In the afternoon we went to the deaf church in Ijebu Ode. Another smaller group of about 20. Two deaf ladies were saved in this service.

One thing that encouraged me about this church is that they are holding Bible studies in another town in hopes to start another church. Their Bible study has 35 to 40 regular attendees. The new town they are going to has an estimated 1,000 Deaf in the town. That is a larger deaf population than in Ijebu Ode. Pray for the church in Ijebu Ode that they will follow the Lord’s leading in this new work.

Fruit

Those are the six deaf services and one hearing service that I was privileged to preach in during my trip. I’m certainly not an eloquent speaker, but I thank God for the privilege of sharing His Word as I travel. I pray that He will continue to show me how to present the Gospel in a simple way that is accurate and understandable.

Home From Nigeria

December 7, 2018 5:38 am

I arrived home from Nigeria safely. Now to try and get my internal clock back to normal. Since I woke up at 4 this morning, I have extra time to type out a funny story that happened on my way home.

I arrived at the airport in Lagos with enough time to check in. While that is always good, it wasn’t a guaranteed situation. My friend Wale only lives 14 miles from the airport, but it takes anywhere from 1 to 2+ hours to get there. Since we made pretty good time getting to within 10 minutes of the airport, we decided to stop at Domino’s Pizza for supper. When we left there we had almost 45 minutes to make the 10 minute drive.

Traffic from the pizza place to the airport wasn’t that bad. However, in the airport drop off area we sat in a line about 1/4 mile away from the airport staring at red tail lights and not moving very quickly. Though I had checked in online I still had to turn in my checked bag and get a boarding pass. During online check in they emphasized that the counter to do that would be closed 2 hours before the flight.

When I only had 5 minutes left of that 2-hour window, I jumped out of the car, grabbed my bag, shook Wale’s hand and darted for the airport. Though I would have liked a hug and a proper farewell, this seemed to be the best course of action.

I made it through security fairly quickly. Yes, you have to go through a metal detector, physical pat down and have your bags run through a scanner just to walk into the door of the airport. I even found the counter to my airline and was pleased to see workers still there. However, there were no other passengers around. Apparently they heeded the 2-hour warning and came a bit earlier (or they were still stuck in traffic).

Check in went well and I was relieved to have almost 2 hours to work my way through immigration and security. At the first immigration checkpoint the officer took my passport and boarding pass and actually acted pleasant. Immigration officers have never been anyone I have tried to joke with since the incident when I was 16 years old and I insisted to a US immigration officer that I was a citizen of Texas and not the USA. He didn’t appreciate the joke and I have been all business with those guys since then.

This officer asked in an obviously playful way, “Are you a Nigeria national?”

I looked at my arm, which is not overly tanned, and said, “I’ve been here long enough that I might be getting a little brown, but not quite as dark as a Nigerian.”

He chuckled (thankfully), then I added, “They did give me the name Baba Dudu, but I don’t think that quite qualifies me as being Nigerian.”

Again he laughed and let me through after checking out my passport.

Now, before you think I’m saying something inappropriate, let me explain the name.

Baba is a common title of respect in many African and middle eastern countries. It has an Arabic background from what I understand. It just means father, elder, respected old man, etc.

The dudu part is what sounds weird. In Yoruba, the strongest language around Lagos, it means black. As in color. It can be used to refer to a person’s skin color like we do in English.

For whatever reason, one of my friends, from my first trip to Nigeria 9 years ago, started calling me Baba Dudu (black father). He did it again this trip and it seemed to be enough to entertain the immigration officer for a brief moment. Maybe some of them do enjoy a little humor now and then.

By the way, I never explained to my Nigerian friend what the word that sounds like dudu in English means. We’ll just keep that to ourselves.