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Monday, 14 March 2016

WFBC Short-Term Missions Team Update

This week Alan and I welcomed four UGA students from Watkinsville First Baptist Church (our sending church in the states) for a week of Great Exchange surveys and refugee work. The team was made up of Lauren Clark, Micah Houghton, McKenna Vick and Catherine Villis.  I have posted some of our updates from the week so you can see what the team was up to and remember to pray for them as they return to their studies in the states.  

Saturday March 5th - Morning
 The Germany missions team from WFBC has arrived in Frankfurt and is on their way to Heidelberg where breakfast is waiting. Please pray for the team this week as they do the Great Exchange Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday mornings and early afternoons. They will also help host a meal for a dozen Syrian and Iraqi refugees Saturday night (tonight!), work with over 100 refugee children Tuesday and Friday nights and minister to refugee men through a game night on Thursday. They join our regular housegroup to share their testimonies with our German/British/American group as well Monday night. It's a very full week. Please pray against too much jet lag and against the spiritual attack that they will certainly feel in this post-Christian country. 

We've been very impressed with the team thus far - they dove straight in after a few hours rest at the hostel talking to refugees tonight and getting to know them better at the dinner we hosted at our church. I think it was interesting for them to hear first hand about why these refugees are here and what they have had to flee and also just to sit, eat a meal, sing around the piano, laugh and pray together. 

The team has been here since Saturday and has done great work as God's ambassadors to Heidelberg. The team spent Sunday with our church, enjoying a pot luck after and then we had a meal and prayer and worship time at our house that evening. Monday we kicked off the Great Exchange with prayer and worship and had dozens of gospel conversations with committed atheists, Muslims and even a few Christians (or they claimed that but didn't have any certainty of what would happen to them after they died). One man we interviewed whose mother was Greek Orthodox Christian and whose father was a committed Muslim said he remained uncommitted to any notion of a God. Monday night the team came to our house and joined with other German believers for a time of testimony sharing, worship, prayer and fellowship. On Tuesday when it was time to go, Alan said every single person was doing a survey and it was hard to get them to stop. Praise God! Tuesday night the team went to the largest refugee camp here (a former military camp) and helped with a children's program hosting around 150 refugee children for soccer and basketball, drawing, doing puzzles and playing with dolls. Today the team has the day off to see Heidelberg and to relax before another two days of surveys and refugee work. We covet your prayers for the team - for boldness in sharing, for favor with the German offficials (we've been stopped doing worship music in the streets already once!) and for many to come to know Christ.

The remainder of the week the team did surveys in the mornings and afternoons after great praise and worship led by Bex, Lauren and Micah and a time of prayer.  Thursday night the team went to a church where refugee men primarily come each week to play games and socialize.  They got into many good conversations and enjoyed getting to know the men better.  Friday night it was back to PHV for the children's program and then to our house for a short debrief and a surprise birthday cake and singing for Micah whose birthday was yesterday.  Saturday it was up early to get to the airport and fortunately all arrived home in Georgia safe and sound Saturday night.

We have truly been blessed by the team and their willingness to jump right in, share their faith and their love for Christ this last week.  We pray God will watch over them as they continue their studies at UGA.

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