Inspiring Story from Ethiopia
Jo Towell, a member of the Peninsula Church of Christ in Portland, Oregon,
tells the following story about one of her WEI students in Ethiopia:
"My student Wariso Abesho was a teacher at the Catholic school in Zeway,
Ethiopia. When he received the first packet of WEI lessons, the Head Master
at the Catholic school opened the packet, discovered the Bible study
materials, and immediately fired Wariso.
"Wariso was confused and very concerned for his family's welfare. However,
he completed the lessons and returned them to me, along with a letter
telling me about being fired from his job for studying the Biblewhich he
thought was a good thing.
"I wrote and explained that sometimes we are persecuted for doing what God
wants us to do, but God has promised to bless us when we choose to follow
Him and obey his commands. I also suggested that he look up the Church of
Christ. I mentioned some of the things the church in Ethiopia is doing.
"Wariso's next letter was full of excitement. He had gotten a job teaching
at one of the state schools in Zeway. He had found the Church of Christ in
Addis Ababa and was so excited about it that he wanted to start a Church of
Christ in Zeway. I gave the information to Art Hitt who contacted John Ed
Clark, who then contacted Behailu Abebe in Ethiopia.
"Brother Abebe and others contacted Wariso and studied with him and his wife
Hawa, a Muslim. They were both baptized into Christ on February 23, 2003.
Brother Abebe thinks they will soon be able to establish a congregation of
the Lord's church in Zeway, a city of 30,000 people. Praise God."
Orangevale Printing Ministry
For more than a decade, the Church of Christ in Orangevale, California has
been printing materials for WBS as a part of their mission outreach. More
recently, they started printing some WEI materials as well.
In this issue of Update, we honor Jim McPeak and his faithful team of
workers, and we thank the Orangevale congregation for its fellowship
Jim says that WEI and the Orangevale Church of Christ are "partners." When
members of the Orangevale congregation became involved in campaign efforts
in India and Africa, they saw for themselves the value of printed lessons in
foreign missions. This increased their commitment to the printing ministry.
Now, they print WEI lessons in English, Russian, and Spanish.
Jim says, "The Russian WEI lessons are available for use in the U.S. by
sister congregations (i.e., Rancho Cordova, CA) who are reaching out to
Russian immigrants in their communities. The Spanish WEI lessons are
currently being field-tested. Once released, the Spanish WEI lessons should
help meet a great need here in the U.S. as well as Central and South
Standing by the high-speed copy machine below are the
three men who currently print the lessons.
Wayne Beard, Jim Rich, and Jim McPeak
Jim says, "The lesson books are put together
in a cooperative effort involving both the Orangevale and the Fairfield
The following picture shows seven people collating the books in the
Orangevale fellowship hall. Standing: David Douglass, Paul Rizzo, Ken
Gehring, and Dave Grall. Seated: Bess Haymes, Bill Haymes, and Charlot
Printing, collating, and binding books can be arduous work. Yet, these
steadfast workers keep producing Bible study materials that God is using to
teach people all over the world.
Thank God for the Orangevale congregation and for its partnership in world
From Agnostic Professor to Preacher
Bob and Jan Towell, directors of the WEI Internet ministry, forwarded the
following Emailwritten by Professor Gennadiy Postnov, a WEI student in
Lipetsk, Russia who has been baptized:
"In March, Robert Knapp rang me up asking if I was willing to conduct Bible
classes at the Lipetsk church. After a week or so, I accepted the offer.
Since then, I've preached several times.
"Having been brainwashed forcibly by godless materialism propaganda, too
many people in this country are pursuing material possessionsto no avail. I
am sure the economic situation won't improve until the nation starts taking
heed to Jesus' teachings. Having been robbed of heavenly bread and
concentrating exclusively on their daily bread, people have neitherbecause
they walk in darkness.
"I thank God for my American friends who have helped me see the Light."
Two New Christians in Lushnja
This report has been removed for security reasons.
Oradea, Romania Fellowship
One of the highlights of my recent trip to Romania was the international
fellowship in Oradea. Missionaries and national church leaders from Hungary
and Romania gathered for a day of singing, praying, preaching, and table
Tom Langley, missionary in Oradea, reports the following: "Our first ever
Romanian/Hungarian church meeting went very well on Saturday, March 29th. We
had representatives from Cluj, Arad, and Oradea, Romania, and from Miskolc,
Solnok, and Budapest, Hungary. There were approximately sixty in attendance,
and our hall was nearly full.
"Members of the Oradea church brought food for lunch, and we had enough to
feed an army.
"We sang praises to God in Romanian, Hungarian, and English. Paul Henderson,
missionary from Budapest, spoke twice on unity in the body of Christ. He
spoke in Hungarian, and Romeo [a brother from Oradea] translated his lessons
into Romanian. In this part of Romania, a large portion of the population is
ethnic Hungarian. Both of Paul's lessons were powerful and appropriate. We
hope to continue this fellowship on a regular basis."
The following week, Tom and I traveled in Romania and Hungary visiting
missionaries and setting up summer campaigns. Five summer campaigns were
scheduled for 2004.
Praise God for opening new doors.
2 New Christians in Vlorė
Virgil and Jackie Jackson report that two young women have been baptized in
Vlorė: Yllka Cela and Sonila Berdo.
Yllka, a schoolteacher in her early thirties, "comes from a strongly Muslim
background. Many like her have a long and difficult journey to come to faith
in Jesus Christ
"On the same afternoon, Sonila Berdo was baptized into Christ. Sonila, a
23-year-old college graduate, has been studying with us for several months.
We were amazed at her Bible knowledgethe result of ten years of personal
Bible reading. It was thrilling to learn that Sonila began her daily reading
and prayer as the result of a study she had with Sherry Reeves in our
initial summer effort in 1993!"
2 New Christians in Elbasan
Pete Hodge, missionary in Elbasan, Albania, has good news to report: "Sunday
16th March will be a day to remember for 13-year-old Denise Millo. She was
immersed into Christ for the forgiveness of sins. Denise has been Dulcie's
student for some time.
"Two days later, Blendi Yzeiri (30) was immersed. Blendi had been studying
with Gene Banister and Koli.
"Please pray for these two babes in Christ as they begin their walk with the
Exciting Developments in Tirana
On April 21, Arjon Zhusti was baptized into Christ. Arjon, a student of
Ellen Walker, lives in Tirana and works as an engineer.
April 27 was "Friends' Day" in
Tirana. Bill Wilson of Köln, Germany was the guest speaker. Two hundred and
twenty people met for worship in the Historical Museum.
At 1:15, the youth group, directed by Ellen Walker, staged a drama
production written by Brian Simmons, titled "Forgive Our Sins."
Ellen comments, "The theme of this play is important and is something that
has been looked down on in Albanian culture. The 'honorable' thing to do
was, in earlier years, to revenge the wrongs done to you and your loved
ones. The roots of these customs run deep, and years of tradition can't be
uprooted in a day, a month, or a year, or maybe even in a decade. We have
seen that drama can touch hearts in a way that
preaching never can."
Bledi Valca, Lloyd, Nastar
Sterjo, Ervin Ballabani
Lloyd Campbell writes, "Five
young men of the Tirana congregation meet with me on Saturday morning for a
class on Biblical preaching. The congregation encourages these young men to
preach on Sunday evenings where they can make practical application of what
they have learned.
4th Annual Missionary Conference
On March 1920, Bill Morgan led the fourth annual missionary conference in
Tirana. Fifty-five people attendedincluding 26 American and British
missionaries and 29 Albanian church leaders from Albania and Kosova. It was
the largest gathering of its kind to date.
Alfred Zikė writes, "It was so great to hear about the Lord's work in many
cities and villages all over the country. As I was listening to the reports
that missionaries brought, my memory went back to the hot summer of 1992. In
that summer, on July 10th, started a big campaign of evangelizing Albania.
On August 2nd, the first congregation was established in Tirana.
"I am a witness of that time. As
many others, I started studying English as well as Bible each day from
Monday till Friday. I am grateful to God for my first Bible teacher, Yvonne
Davis, a precious lady, who planted the Word in my heart.
"I cannot forget, too, our special day on July 21st, 1993, Diana's and my
birthday in the Lord. "It passed 10 years, and the church in Albania grew
amazingly through God's blessings upon missionary efforts and WEI in Tirana,
Vlorė, Orikum, Durrės, Elbasan, Fier, Korēė, Lushnja, Shkodėr, and beyond
Albanian borders in Prizren, Kosova.
"Praise the Lord! Praise His name!"
Opportunity Knocks in Ghana
Church leaders in Ghana have written to us about a tremendous opportunity
for spreading the Good News in West Africa.
Outside of Accra, the capital city, there is a Liberian refugee camp. In a
single day, the Ghana church leaders signed up 185 WEI students, and they
say they can easily sign up 1,000 more. But they need teaching materials.
The Ghana leaders want to teach the refugees themselves so they can follow
up on them immediately.
The problem is this: they don't have the funds for ordering WEI materials.
Neither can WEI afford to supply the materials free of charge and mail them
to Africa. We're skating on thin ice as it is.
We need at least $5,000 in order to supply the Ghana preachers with the
materials they need. Who will join hands with us in this evangelistic
May God Bless You
We are eternally grateful to you, our friends and fellow workers, who give
and give and give to the cause of Christ through WEI. Thank you from the
depths of our hearts. We love you.
At the same time, we are praying that God will raise up new partners in
world evangelism. Red ink is beginning to flow again.
Put WEI in your church budget. Take up a special contribution. Send a check
out of your mission contingency fund. Help us make disciples of all the
nations. Together, with the help of God, we can spread the Good News to the
ends of the earth.
---Dick and Maudine Ady