July 2023 Austria, Cuba, Iran, Israel, Ukraine, UK
The group in Vienna continue to meet and Brother Eliya informs: "Hello dear brother. Here we found new friends. Sometimes we meet on Saturdays and sometimes on Saturdays. Because of the hot weather, we usually place it in the afternoons." CUBA
A good number of Hispanic brethren, many of them only fairly recently baptized themselves, joined together to witness the online baptism of IDAYAMI GARCIA in Cuba, another app user and the fruit of brother Pedro's ceaseless work of teaching and witness. All of course a manifestation of the Lord's ceaseless work for so many people, worldwide and in so many different situations. Our sister baptized herself in a carefully constructed pool as you can just about make out from the photos. IRAN
We baptized brother Hamza a year ago, online in Iran. He explains his recent silence and asks for our prayers- all very sobering:
"I was arrested a year ago on charges of promoting the word of God. I had a bad mark against me and was charged with leaving Islam. I suffered a lot. I endured for a year. But God's word was with me. May God touch all Iranian men and purify them and guide them in the way of God. With my wife and daughter... we are under strict control. May God, our God, in the dear name of Christ Jesus, help all the believers as well as the misguided... and grant me wisdom and blessings and money so that I can live peacefully. Please pray for me... May God bless me from heaven . May the Holy Spirit open the wisdom and word of God to me. May we live in Iran in the blessings and abundance of God. May the limitations be bearable for me. Brother, thank you for your service in the way of our Lord Jesus Christ. Brother, I follow you on YouTube. My brother, I am waiting for your prayers. Brother, please pray for me in private".
Mark & Lisa, Evia & Duncan have had a super busy time here. As ever, it is networking which is the key. The two brothers baptized earlier this year work on a farm but go to agricultural college one day a week, where they meet many other migrant workers who are also studying. Many have found their experience in Israel disappointing, they are made to work long hours, sleeping in poor conditions with many others in bunk beds in metal containers, hot in Summer and cold in Winter, without any personal space... and have much of their salary taken as payment for this accommodation. Far from home... many start to think about God, and the things of His word. For they are slogging away at work... in the land of the Bible, the land of the Lord Jesus. Only free on Sabbath, when there is no public transport in Israel, they are unable to attend any church. And so, our brothers have found fertile ground for the true Gospel as they meet each week at college with those experiencing all this. We were able to go to the college- such an opportunity for networking the gospel to interested people:
We spent some days travelling around various farms meeting our brethren and their contacts- in temperatures above 40 C. Despite a car smash we were able to baptize HELLEN and CHARITY in their extended lunchbreak, seeing they had to work the Sabbath [Saturday] we planned the baptisms:
Saturday being Sabbath was a very intense day, gathering everyone together from their various farms for the great day of the baptisms. We drove around the farms transporting folks to the baptismal place where the river Jordan meets the sea of Galilee. As the distances were significant, those transported first had to wait some time for the others. So, we took over a cafe and then a KFC for this. And indeed, there was true fellowship. Our brethren are already meeting together on WhatsApp and once / month in person as best they can. It's just amazing, that in farms near the 1st Century fishing villages where the Lord first preached, there are now migrant workers who are baptized and devoted to Him and His Kingdom. And so, the baptisms were not without so much effort on earth, which was all the same only a tiny reflection of all the Lord's work in these lives from before the foundation of the world until now: NEPHELINE, FRANCINE, BRIDGET, GERTRUDE, PRINCE, FOSTER, CHARITY, HELEN, KONDWANI, COMFORT, MATTHEW and STEVEN. The heat was intense, the towels on the head were to shield from the heat:
It was clear from chats before and afterwards that these people were truly appreciative of the things of our Lord Jesus and His Kingdom. They had come to this decision from His hand in their lives, bringing them to Israel, to hard and difficult work situations, isolation on farms without transport... and they responded to those nudges from the Lord by coming to Him in spirit and truth.
Here they are with their new NEV Bibles:
We did no tourism, didn't go anywhere near Jerusalem, just drove up mount Tabor as we were passing by it, and Mark offers some spiritual insights about what happened there in the time of Deborah and Barak at https://youtu.be/_26rpTXo3nw
Appreciate your prayers this week as we work in Ukraine, seeking to assist our brothers and sisters in the very difficult situation there.
We were so happy to baptize JUREK [Jerzy], one of several Polish speakers who attend our meetings at Lunchtime Church- although he speaks fluent English. You can see him here with Karin [originally from Sweden] and Ivan, originally from Italy. All united together in the saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus, here in South London.
Given the huge success of the recent alcohol free garden party, we're planning another for Saturday 9 September, God willing. This will be at the Heaster home in Croydon. We sure could do with someone just taking on the catering. We have the offer of a large barbeque. Would anyone like to come forward and take this on?
- For those recently baptized
- For all those suffering in the heatwaves, especially those living without air con [the poor seem the worst affected by climate change]
- For brother Hamza and all under Islamic extremist persecution
- For our difficult work in Ukraine this week
With love from your brothers and sisters of Carelinks