Sunday, 19 December 2010

Lots of News

Hello,

Sorry for the long delay between messages. The last few weeks have been a blur. We were able to get the house packed up, cottage furnished and last minute details completed to leave England. We consider the last few weeks to be the most stressful we have had in our 24 year together. There were just a number of situations that came up and the ministry does not stop just because you have other things that need to be done.
We left for London a few hours late and after spending then night, took the Underground into London for a day out. We always try to a go up a day early when we fly out to show the kids something new. We sent some time in the British Museum, rode the London Eye for the first time and saw a few new sights. The next day we flew out for Oklahoma. A few delays later we arrived and have been going ever since. We are trying to get settled as well as do a bit of Christmas shopping but they are not conducive. Enjoyed out first service back in our home church and and it was good to see Austin again. We have all missed him but Deidra was especially excited to be able to see him again.
We pray you have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year. We are excited to see what God has in store for 2011.

Monday, 29 November 2010

We Are Thankful

Hello,

We had a great Thanksgiving weekend. As always, we went to Plymouth on Thursday for late night shopping and Pizza Hut. This has been a family tradition ever since we moved to England and our first oven was too small for a turkey. We have our big meal on Friday and invite everyone we know.They never all show up the same year but this year we had 43 for dinner. We had the Harvey girls from Exeter sing for us and James Dudley also did a solo. This year everyone stayed around talking and we did not adjourn to the house until 9:30PM. 29 came back to the house and the last group left at 11:15PM. We had a few overnight guests and after breakfast Saturday, they headed back home. Saturday night we had 14 over for Matt's 15th birthday party. He had invited some family and friends over to celebrate.
The best thing about the weekend was the postman brought us our passports on Saturday morning and they had our permanent resident visas stamped inside. We are now free to come and go in the UK. What an answer to prayer. Given the drastic reduction in immigration that is being implemented, we are blessed to have this matter settled. So all is a go for our furlough starting Dec 15th. Time to get serious about packing.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Update

Hello,

We had nice services on Sunday. No visitors but everyone was on their place. The funeral on Monday went well. We had a short graveside service and then back to the Guide Hall for a memorial service. We were told to expect about 15-20 at the memorial but 40 showed up. It really meant alot to Jackie to see everyone come for the service. Gave a clear, personal salvation message and it was evident from the expressions I was seeing that this was the first time many had ever heard of salvation by grace.

We heard that a decision was reached on our permanent residence visas today but the source did not say if they were approved or rejected. Guess we will have to wait for the post to come in the next few days to find out.

Most of the things in our house are for sale and so we have a steady stream of people coming by to look at them. Add to this the people coming to look at the house and it can be quite a zoo at times. All part of packing up life for furlough.

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Prayer Needed

Hello,

Quite the busy week. We started clearing the house and deciding what goes and what stays. So far, the kids are in the stay category but that may be because they are big enough to move the sofa. We have three weeks or so before we fly out and have alot to do. Our Thanksgiving dinner is this Friday and we are expecting about 40 this year. We have declared a moratorium on packing until after the dinner and then hit it next week.

We have a few things we would ask you to pray about:

We are still waiting for our permanent visa applications to be processed. This means they have our passports and without passports, there will be no flying on the 15th.

The days are short for our foster child to find a home before we leave. We would love to see him get saved and placed in a Christian home but that would certainly take a miracle from God.

Pray for Andrea as she has alot on her plate with the move, school, Brownies and planning for next year. She not only needs to plan what books to take back for school this spring but also what books will be needed to start the fall semester while we are in the States.

We have a funeral on Monday and there will be a number of lost people there. This is the first funeral we have done in England and pray it will go well.

Thank you for your prayers and support of our ministry.

Saturday, 13 November 2010

A Ministry Week

Hello,

We read a good statement this week. Someone had mentioned it was hard to do ministry for all the interruptions. An older preacher remarked back that the interruptions were the ministry. Gave us a pause for thought. The ministry is all about people. People have troubles as sparks fly up from a fire as Solomon penned. Despite our desire for the comfort of routine and repetition, we need to be aware that it just is not feasible.

Our week..... a drunk lady at the door needing help, the death of the husband of a lady who attends our services, a reluctant foster child, the continued delay of our permanent visas and return of our passports, the beginning of moving our things to storage and the news our house is being shown to a potential buyer. Yet, God has blessed in these situations and we covet your prayers.

Monday, 8 November 2010

Preperations

Hello,
In 5 weeks, we fly out to the States to start our furlough (if we get our passports back from the British Government). To assist in the turnover of the work to the preachers filling in, our pastor brought them over for a short survey trip. They arrived on Tuesday and we have been going ever since. Getting them up to speed on the area, stores, housing, driving, shopping and all the church activities has kept us hopping. We had a great today at church. Each of the men coming over preached a service and we had a few folks come out that normally do not attend services. The men leave on Monday and we have to get busy getting the house packed and the temporary cottage furnished and equipped for our replacements.
The Dudleys took us all out to eat in Looe today after the morning church. Here are a few pics from Looe.

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Good Sunday

Hello,

Some days are just good days. We have a church fellowship on the 5th Sunday in those months that have them. During the summer we tended to do things outside of church for these activities but with Autumn fully upon us, we decided to go back to an inside meal. We also got a wild hair to have an afternoon service after dinner and be done early for the day. We have enough problems with vandals on Sunday evenings and thought it would be prudent to not be there on Halloween. We had a few ill this morning but most everyone was there and brought food for dinner. We had a good time of fellowship and had two visitors for the afternoon service. The husbands of two ladies that come regularly came for dinner and stayed for the service. One had been to our services before but the other was there for the first time. A short afternoon service and it was home for a good nap. Everyone chipped in to clean up and that was a blessing in itself. Good to see people develop a servants heart.
This week our home pastor is flying over with our two assistant pastors for a visit. The assistants will be filling in for us while we are back on furlough and are coming over to get the lay of the land.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

101........


Hello,

We missed a milestone in the blog's life last week. It was our 100th post. Who knew someone could talk about so little for so long?

The best news from last week was we found a local home for Matt's dog. The dog has been in the kennel since Matt went into care and the time had come for the dog to be re homed. There are few homes willing to take a foster child as well as their dog. The agency responsible for Matt decided Max the dog needed to go. We asked for a week to find a local home so Matt could still go and see his dog and they agreed. Max is now happily roaming a farm near Looe and Matt is going to see him tomorrow. Now we just need to find Matt a permanent home.
We are still waiting for the British Home Office to return our permanent resident applications. Normally, we would have received our visas back by now but it seems to be dragging on. You are not allowed to ring and check on the progress so we can just wait and pray. In all reality, we do not need them until the middle of December for our flight but it would be nice to know what they have decided to do with us.
We are having our 5th Sunday fellowship this week. The morning service will be followed with a proper roast dinner and then we are having an afternoon service. First time for the afternoon service but we thought we would give it a try.

Monday, 18 October 2010

Pictures From Scotland

Swilcan Bridge on the 18th at St Andrews



place where a matyr was burned in St Andrews












Saturday, 16 October 2010

Sure Is Cold In Scotland

Hello,

Hither and yon seems to be our motto lately. After picking up the men in London and returning home, we had a great weekend with Bro Lou Guadagno Jr. and Ben Shutt. Bro Lou sang for us both morning and evening and also preached the morning service. Ben gave his testimony in the evening service and it was a blessing to hear how God has worked in his life. After the service it was off to Scotland for a preachers fellowship. We drove about 4 hours Sunday eve and then finished up with about 7 hours of driving Monday. We did stop at the England/Scotland border to see the remains of Hadrian's Wall. (Pictures will follow)
The meeting was great as usual. Good preaching, singing and fellowship. Folks came from Scotland, England, Ireland and the US for the meeting. A long drive Friday and it was good to be home. Now it is time to get things prepared for furlough.
Our young lad who is living with us is doing well. He still has some adjustments to make but to go from his previous life to living with us has been a HUGE change for him. Please pray that he will get saved before he has to go to a permanent foster home.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Is This the Gossmeyer Hotel?????











Hello,








Got the Crown ladies off to their train Monday and then spent Tuesday ferrying James around to various appointments and errands. Wednesday, Ben and I headed east. I dropped Ben off in Southampton and then drove to Oxford for the Wed evening service. Enjoyed the service with a young couple that have started a work very near to the university. After a bit of Nandos for dinner I headed for Gatwick Airport to spend the night. Picking up two men from the states the next morning, we headed into London before heading home to Cornwall. I am including a few pictures from our day in London because it was bright and sunny. For all the times Kent has been to London, we do not have that many sunny pictures. Friday we showed our guests around our town, did some letterboxing and went to Plymouth for dinner and some sightseeing. Deidra was also having a sleepover that night so we had 4 non Gossmeyers in the house. Sat we celebrated Connie's 94th birthday with a roast dinner and a birthday cake. A trip to Polperro followed and then dinner. Tomorrow we will have a guest speaker in the morning and after the evening service, Kent and the guests will head to Scotland, picking up Bro Harvey in Exeter on the way, for a preacher meeting. Should be a good week.

Monday, 4 October 2010

Where Did The WeeK Go?






Hello,
Not sure what happened to last week. It was just the last Sunday on September and now it is the first Sunday in October. We did find a cottage for the preachers coming over to fill in for us while we are on furlough. We know the owner and think it will work out quite well. We are still amazed our home church is making the sacrifice to send over two families to cover for us. Truly a blessing. Andrea had 3 or so meeting in relation to the young man living with us. The county of Cornwall had a large backlog of children needing foster homes and they do not have a lot of options for him. Despite this, his social worker seems quite determined to get him out of our house for some reason. He is adapting to life at our house quite well and it seems the Gospel is starting to sink in and he has asked a few questions.



We had our annual booth at the Liskeard St Matthew's Fayre this Sat. Biggest crowd we have seen. The Crown College UK sent two young ladies down to help us out with the event and they did great. They jumped in without having to be asked and even surprised us by making breakfast both mornings. Now we wait for the cards to be returned. Good day at church. The ladies sang for us and we had two good services.



We have a pastor from the States flying in on Thursday. Kent will go up and pick him up.

Saturday, 25 September 2010

Permanent Visa

Hello,

In order to live for an extended period in a country foreign to you, it is normally required to obtain permission from the government. Most countries will allow you to visit for up to 6 months but require approval (visa) to stay longer. The United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) requires you to have a temporary visa to enter the country if you intend to stay. After a period of 5 years, you can apply for a permanent visa which entitles you to all the rights of citizenship except voting. We applied after 5 years and were refused on a technicality. So now we have been back in country 5 continuous years we can reapply. We sent our application in on Tuesday and on Thursday, they hit our credit card for the $2,100 fee. That sounds good but they charge the fee whether you are approved or not. We should receive word in a week or two.
Many have asked what happens if we are refused. That depends on the govt. They can ask you to be in country for another set of qualifying years or they can just request you leave. We are just trusting God that His will be done.

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Prayer Letter

Dear Pastor and church,

We appreciate all the emails we received letting us know you are praying for our oldest son, Austin, during his transition to living in the States. Many view a missionary child returning to the States as a homecoming and yet for the majority of them, it is a rude awakening to a culture they are vaguely familiar with. Austin has started school and seems to be adjusting. We continue to covet your prayers for him.
We had a busy summer with several outreach events. The annual Liskeard show in July went well and we were able to hand out several hundred tracts. In August, we once again helped with a youth camp up near London. About 12 churches were represented and there were anywhere from 90-125 people on site depending on the day. Kent preached the evening services and he and Andrea were the camp cooks this year. One lad made a profession and there were a number of other decisions as well. Each year the camp grows and it is a blessing to see God use it to change lives. Pictures and further reports of these events and more can be found on our blog www.cornwallbaptist.blogspot.com .

Work continues on the Olympic project. In just two years, an estimated 2 million people will join the 7 million that already live in London for the Summer Olympics. We want to be there to give them the gospel and we need your help. Please pray about partnering with us in this endeavor and perhaps even spending a week in London helping us distribute the material.

We would also ask for your prayer concerning our permanent visa application. By the time you read this it should be in the decision makers’ hands and we are praying we will be approved this time.

The time has come for us to take a furlough. In the last 8 years we have been in the States 6 months. We would delay this one as well but there are several things that need to be taken care of. We are planning to arrive in the States in December and after a bit of adjustment, start reporting to all those who wish for us to come by. We are blessed to be associated with you folks and look forward to seeing you again. Please let us know if you are interested in having us come by.

Monday, 13 September 2010

New Ground

Hello,

We have entered new territory in our lives. We have taken a young man into our home for a period of time. We have known him for a few years when he would come over to play with the boys but were unaware of the major problems in his home life until recently. We found out he was shuffling from place to place as no one had room or seemingly the time to take care of him. We had a place so we contacted him and he moved in today.Not sure the authorities will leave him with us as we are not "approved" by their agency but we can give him a home atmosphere while he is with us. He was told he would experience the responsibilities and benefits of being a part of our family. He is not saved but has been to church with us a few times. We would ask you to pray for this young man during this difficult time in his life.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Wife Ministry






Hello,






Many times in an effort to win people to Christ on their given field, a missionary can lose sight of the first ministry that God has entrusted him with, his family. It is just as important to minister to your family as it is to others. This is especially important with your wife. Often overlooked is her contribution to the ministry and seldom does she get to fellowship or converse with other Christian woman.



Despite Kent taking Andrea camping for 4 nights while at youth camp and her only having to cook for 100 people three times a day, Andrea did not consider that an adequate anniversary trip. So, Kent took her to France for a few days. Now that sounds pretty wow but France is only 14 miles from England at Dover and about 100 miles across the channel from Plymouth. There is a car ferry that runs back and forth so we caught one Sunday night after church. We spent a few days just wandering about seeing what Brittany had to offer. It was good to hear her laugh and relax a bit. This year was our 24th anniversary.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Out Of Breath!










Hello,
It has been a crazy but good week. The fellowship on Monday was very good and an encouragement. We heard a Welsh, English and Irish speaker. The folks that went with us were quite excited to here British men preaching the same things they hear from us each week. There were about 120 in attendance and Bro Stuart and his folks did a nice job hosting. Then it was a rush back to the house for our holiday bbq with LBC. Had about 15 there and it was nice to have the Dudleys make it. Tuesday, Kent was privileged to be on the presbytery for a man from Nepal. He got saved while in England as a student and has gone back to his country to preach the Gospel. What a blessing to see such a soft surrendered heart. Spent the night there in Poole and then drove back (3 hours) to take James to an appointment. Services Wed night and then Kent and Ben left early Thursday to the London area. There were some chairs to deliver and Kent was wanting to take some Olympic related pictures. They were able to eat at the only non-military Taco Bell in the UK and sat there awhile savoring the flavor of fire sauce. Friday, they took the tube into London and spent the day walking around taking pics. Back late Friday night for what is hoped to be a quiet, pedestrian Saturday.

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Our Week


Hello,

We may have finally recovered from camp. Kent is still complaining he cracked a few ribs on the water slide at camp but Andrea says he is just getting old. We went back up to camp on Friday to pick up Ben who was house sitting and did a few odd jobs on Sat before we headed home. Good day today at church. Had a few back that have been gone. Tomorrow. Monday 30th is a holiday here in Britain. The church in Exeter is having a fellowship so we are heading over for that during the day, back to our house for a food fellowship the evening, Kent is off to Poole for an ordination service Tuesday evening and he is off to London on Thursday and Friday to deliver some chairs and take some pictures of the Olympic Park and other places. Andrea is getting set to start another year of homeschooling and we need to start getting rid of stuff in preparation for furlough. It is not for awhile yet, but this fall already looks to be busy without anything else being added to it.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Saturday, 21 August 2010

A Mile in Their Shoes











Hello,




We are back from camp and praise God for the decisions that were made. We are completely wiped out but making progress through the pile of laundry that currently hides the laundry room floor.




We left for camp a week ago Thursday, the 12th , to help get the grounds ready and to cook for the staff training days. We arrived to fine weather and found the tents already up and things ahead of schedule. We cooked for 25-30 on Thurs-Sat and then headed back to Cornwall for Sunday services and to drop Juan off at the ferry on Sunday afternoon. He had fun the few days we were up at the camp and I think he would have liked to have stayed for the actual camp week. So back home Sat night at 9, eat, laundry, up and going Sunday morning, services, lunch, Juan gone, laundry, store, repack, load trailer and car and drive 4 hours back up to camp.




There were 54 campers this week and approx 30-40 staff and others. There are a number of missionaries who bring their children to camp and stay the week for the fellowship. We would like to expand this side of the week and provide a week of encouragement for those folks. So all in all about 90 people at camp for the week. It was relentless!!! No sooner had you finished cleaning up from one meal and it was past time to prepare for the next. You never realize just how much goes in to preparing that much food and how much planning it takes when you have very limited cooking and storage facilities. Andrea did a stellar job all week and won over many a camper with those homemade brownies. Kent preached the evening services and "cooked" up some concoctions for the kids to try. Ben and Chris were staff this year and did great. They were always asking what else they could do. Davis and Deidra were campers and said the week was good albeit a little cold in the tents at night.




We know of one lad who got saved this week and there were other decisions as well. Youth camp is truly a great ministry and we are grateful for all those who worked so hard to make it what it it.

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Like Another Son





Hello,








We have been hosting Spanish young men for three years and have been blessed to have some very nice lads stay with us. Juan is no exception. He s just like one of the kids. He plays jokes on us and has a great sense of humour. Here are a few pictures of the homeshool sports day and some pictures from London. Kent had occasion to go to London for business and took an extra day to show Juan the capital.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

It's August, It Must Be Time For Youth Camp










Hello,

Whenever August rolls around it is time to get busy about youth camp. Most years there is a building project to complete or crafts to organize. There is always a series of messages to be prepared for services. This year is different. No building project, Andrea is not on crafts duty, we are the camp cooks. So time to organize a menu to feed the hordes. Kent did make a picnic table from some leftover lumber and is preaching each night of camp but this does seem like an easy year by comparison to most years.

Juan is with us for a few more weeks. We took him bike riding on the Camel Trail. It ends at Padstow which is a fishing port on the north coast.








Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Touring With Juan
















Hello,










Whenever we have a Spanish lad with us we make an effort to get out and about and show them a bit of Cornwall. Here are a few photos from the past week.





Friday, 23 July 2010

July Church Outing







Hello,

Where has July gone? We have been having good services but no visitors. Always nice to have faithful folks who come to the services but visitors seem to encourage everyone. It was time for another church outing so we went to the south coast of Cornwall to Trebah Garden. Voted one of the top 80 gardens in the world, it was an enjoyable day out. One special thing about the garden, it has a small beach that was used as an embarkation point for D-day. The concrete poured for the loading of tanks is still there.