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Sunset picture taken at Hlane Game Reserve, Swaziland, Africa.

Third Quarter Update 2019

Hello Friends and Family!

Greetings from Swaziland! We hope you all are doing well and enjoying the fall season.
 
The last couple months have been action packed. We had long time friends from the States visit us for two weeks at the end of June. We have known Kate and Faith for many years and it was an honor and a privilege to have them come and visit us, and share with them what the Lord has been doing in us and through us over the past 13 years in Swaziland!
 
Shortly after Kate and Faith left, we had our dear friends, Fred and Kathy come for a visit as well. We always look forward to our ministry times together, and this year was something new and different. More details and pictures are below.
 
Also included in this update are three new church plants, a graduation with Pastor Zama's church, and finally, the awesome and exciting news that Shelly is moving back to Swaziland in October!!!!!
 
We are so excited at all the amazing things the Lord is doing. We love sharing with you and giving you a glimpse of how the Lord is moving and changing lives in Swaziland.
 
Enjoy the pictures ... enjoy the stories .... be blessed ..... and finally, thank you for partnering with us in bringing the life changing gospel of Jesus Christ to the nation of Swaziland!
Sending you love from Africa,
Rand
y and Karen

Visitors from the States!

Our long time friends Kate and her daughter Faith, came for a visit in June. Our time spent together was great! Everyday was filled with people, ministry, praying, eating, challenges, and of course a debrief at the end of each day to talk about the days events.

We ministered at churches & shared testimonies about God's goodness in our lives; spent the day at a CarePoint and butchered 10 live chickens and fed about 100 children; visited a pre-school and accompanied the class on the longest field trip in the world; visited a homestead and gave food to a needy family and prayed for them to see God's supernatural care and provision in new and unexpected ways; helped at a "Family Fun Day" in a new community that we have recently planted a church in; and spent an overnight at Hlane Game Reserve admiring God's beautiful creation!
Above is a picture from Hlane Game Reserve when we took a game drive through the park. It is remarkable being able to drive through the park and see all the wild animals in their habitat, and being able to get up close and personal with nature! Definitely a memorable experience!

Home Visit with Breath of Life Church

The pictures above are from a home visit we did with Breath of Life Church.  We planted this church with Pastor Thabiso Nxumalo in July 2017. Earlier this year, bad rains came and destroyed the house of one of his church members. The home was a make shift home made out of stick and mud, old tin sheets and various other building materials. So the church decided to help build the family a house. It has been remarkable to see how the church has worked together to bless this family who was in desperate need of shelter. The most remarkable part is 90 percent of the church is unemployed, so each one has given what he or she is able to. Some have given a door, or a window frame, some gave wood for the roof, and some are offering their manual labor to build the house. To see them give from the little that they have is life changing. This day on our visit, we were able to take some food to the family because the father hasn't been able to find employment, and the mother works part time doing laundry for people in her community. It was such a blessing to be able to partner with Breath of Life Church and bring what we had, to bless this family.

Lunch with Pastor Gladys

The picture below is from a wonderful chicken lunch that we had with Pastor Gladys "under the tree". (We literally sat outside, under this tree and ate our lunch!) We planted a church with Gladys earlier this year and we met to talk about how the Lord has been growing the church. She has been taking some of the people in her church through our 14 discipleship lessons, to help them get grounded in their faith in the Lord Jesus.

CarePoint Visit & Chicken Day

We also visited a CarePoint that friends of ours Moses and Lindiwe started years ago. The Lord is using them in so many ways. This CarePoint, is just that ..... a point of care for the children in their community. They teach preschool Monday thru Friday mornings to help the little ones get ready for big school. They feed children in the community that are really struggling. The children are able to come and eat a hot nutritious meal after school, Monday thru Friday. Along with food, they are also fed the Word of God through Bible Clubs on a weekly basis. Moses and Lindiwe have a heart for the orphan and have also opened a girls home and currently have 14 girls under their care. Amazing!!!
Finally, Moses is also a pastor and we have worked with him over the years, teaching and training his leadership team as well as members in his church. Recently, we have planted another church with him in the Montsholo area ...... see the pictures below. We love to partner with people like Moses and Lindiwe, who have the heart of Father God and are making a difference in the lives of so many people here in Swaziland.
 
The beautiful picture above is one of the little boys in pre-school. Below are pictures from "chicken day", making the 10 live chickens into a delicious chicken stew, then serving the kids this very special lunch!!
 

Nelson's Pre-School & Field Trip

In the last update we shared about Nelson's heart for the Lord and how he is making disciples through ISOM and even with young children, by establishing a Christian preschool using the ACE (Accelerated Christian Education) curriculum. Pictured below is Kate and Faith meeting with Pastor Nelson. This particular afternoon, he shared  with them what the Lord has done in his life over the years. He also shared with them his dream to expand the Christian school each year by adding a new grade, so the children can continue to grow up with an excellent Christ centered education.
Another one of our days was spent with Pastor Nelson's pre-school class, going on the longest field trip in the world!!!! I really didn't think we would be able to do what we did ...... here is the flow of events for the day:
READY .... SET .... GO!
  • Leave pre-school at 8:30am with 17  four and five year olds, two teachers, Kate, Faith, Randy and I!
  • First stop, VOC radio station. The kids were live on the 'Voice of the Church" radio station, reciting bible verses and answering questions.
  • Second stop, to the airport to see planes & helicopters and have a tour of the airport.
  • Third stop, the fire station. The kids even got to climb up into the giant fire truck!
  • Fourth stop, Mlilwane Game Reserve where they had a guided tour around the park and saw many wild animals.
  • Fifth and final stop ...... KFC, Kentucky Fried Chicken for each child!
  • 4:30 pm , return back to school where the parents were waiting to pick up their children.
It was such a fun filled, unforgettable, action packed day. We slept great that night from exhaustion, I'm sure the kids did too. In fact, some of the little ones fell a sleep in the van on the way home from the field trip because it was nap time for many of them!
"VOC" Voice of the Church radio station, where the kids were on the air LIVE, reciting bible verses and answering questions about school.
Our second stop was the King Mswati III International Airport where the kids were able to have a tour of the airport and sit in one of the military helicopter.
Third stop was the fire station where the kids were able to learn about fire safety, and climb up into the very big fire truck.
Fourth stop was Mlilwane Game Reserve, where the children went on a real 'safari' and saw wild animals.
Here is another picture from the fire station where the children were able to see the fire truck shooting water very far to put out an imaginary fire.
 
Our fifth and final stop was KFC ...... forgot to get a picture of the kids eating their chicken. :-) It was finger licken good!!!
This video is classic!!!!    Randy is reviewing with Nelson's pre-schoolers age 4 & 5
the "5 senses!" ... enjoy!

Ministering at Pastor Danda's Church

We had the opportunity to minister with Pastor Danda on a couple different occasions. She is pastoring the church in Emaplazini that we planted in February of 2019. On Saturday, we came to the birthday party that she had for her grandchildren, and the entire community ended up coming. The kids played games, ran foot races, there was a cook out, and of course no birthday celebration is complete unless you have a birthday cake!
 
Included in the picture on the left, are two community members who were so appreciative for Pastor Danda and the work she is doing in the community. Her presence and the church has been a light in this community, and the amount of drinking and crime has actual decreased since February. Please continue to pray for Pastor Danda, that she will continue to reach more people with the gospel in this community.

Family Fun Day -Montsholo Church Plant

"Family Fun Day" in the Montsholo community was in the heart of Pastor Moses and his wife Lindiwe's, months ago. They wanted to plant a church and reach out to a new community with the gospel of Jesus Christ. In this geographical area, there are no born again churches.  The primary religion practiced is Cultural religion which involves  ancestor worship. 
 
Their plan was to go into the community and have a family fun day and get to know the people, and let them get to know Moses and Lindiwe. Someone donated a jumping castle, someone else donated the use of a tent, there was face painting, games to play, soccer matches, and of course plenty of food to eat.

Then 6 weeks later the tent was pitched and the church was started!

Church Plant in Montsholo

This is a neighboring church plant to one that we did last year in Mahabedla. Pastor Moses Kunene we have known for a very long time and have run schools at his main church in Hholoshini. We have experienced great resistance in the Montsholo area because it is a central point in the country for witchcraft.  Currently there are about 13 people that meet each week for church. Please continue to pray for this church, that the light of the gospel will continue to spread.

Church Plant in Khula

Samson Mavuso is the pastor of this new church plant. He has a heart for reaching people with the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. During the two week crusade, 10 men got born again out of the 'Jerichos.' The Jericho's are one of the sects of religion in Swaziland, that are steeped in witchcraft and demon worship. He currently has about 20 people meeting in his home for church each week!

Church Plant in Mnyokane

The church plant in Mnyokane we where we partnered with Pastor Tsela. In the picture above, there are two men in the center of the photo in grayish shirts, they are BOTH Pastor Tsela ... father and son! The older Tsela on the left, Bernard Tsela, we trained in our first ISOM class in 2010. Now his son Bheki Tsela, is also a Pastor and has planted a church in Mnyokane. Many people responded to the invitation of the Gospel and accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior. The church has grown quickly and there are 50 people that are going through the 14 Lesson Discipleship Course.

Pastor Zama Dlamini - Graduation


We have been working along side Pastor Zama and his churches for several years now. We began by training some of his leaders for 2 years. Then his leaders started training others. In this recent graduation, many of the students who have completed the 14 lesson Discipleship Course, were older teens and young adults.

Pastor Zama continues to focus on this group of young people to make "Disciples of Christ". Why?  Because these are the future leaders of Swaziland. As this generation takes a stand for Jesus and walks in obedience to His Word, the future looks bright and full of hope.

Please continue to pray for these young adults, that they stay strong in the Lord, that they walk in holiness and the callings that the Lord has for each one of them.

More Friends from the States!

We had a wonderful visit with our dear friends from the States, Fred and Kathy. These two have such a heart for the Lord and Swaziland. They have been coming to Swaziland for over 10 years. They always make time for us in their busy ministry schedule, to be a blessing to us and encourage us! We always walk away refreshed!
This particular evening, we had dinner with the Young Life leaders from Swaziland, Mozambigue, South Africa, and the United States.
The days event consisted of visiting Tfutjana Mount Resort and Restuarant, where we climbed the mountain (which was very high!!!!), then had a delicious lunch afterwards.
We had a great day with the Swaziland Young Life leaders. A day where the leaders were poured into, explored mountains and caves, had great food, lots of fun and a short encouraging message!

Shelly is moving back to Swaziland!

Finally ...... we are so excited to share the news that Shelly will be moving back to Swaziland in October!!!!!
Earlier this year, Shelly came to Swaziland for a visit. Before she left for Swaziland, a number of the ministries she was involved in were coming to a close.  So the timing was actually really good, to be away for a month. When she returned to England, she was fasting and praying and asking the Lord for clarity on what He had next for her.

She  was asking the Lord for clarity and vision going forward, and what were the next steps He had for her.  In what areas did he want her to invest her time, energy and resources?  The more time she spent with Him, the more clear He made it, that it was time for her to return to Swaziland and continue doing missions here.

He
hasn’t told her exactly what she will be doing here, but she knows for sure that moving here is the next step. She arrives next month in early October! She will take some time settle in to a very different culture from what she has been living in in the UK, and will continue to ask the Lord how and where He wants her ministering.

One thing the Lord did speak specifically to Shelly about was completing a 2 week training course called "The Nikanor Project" before returning to Swaziland.

“Nikanor” is a Greek word from the New Testament which means “he who overcomes or is victorious.”  The training is focused on effectively equipping believers for real and sustained victory, and in turn, to help others do the same.

They specialize in training those who are serving, or are called to serve in a variety of areas such as:

  • Leadership, Mentoring and Discipleship
  • Counseling & Member Care
  • Debriefing and Restoration Work
  • Conflict Resolution and Group Work
Upon completion of her training, she will have additional skills to help the body of Christ to walk as overcomers on a consistent basis.

Prayer Requests:

  • Pray for Shelly as she transitions back to Swaziland. Moving across continents can be a bit overwhelming at times given everything that needs to be done.
  • Pray for Shelly as she seeks direction from the Lord and the specific ministry he has for her once she is in Swaziland.
  • Pray for Randy and I as we identify pastors to partner with in planting churches.
  • Pray for the all church plants and their respective pastors, that each one would continue to seek the Lord and walk in obedience to His Word and that they care for the flock that the Lord has entrusted to them.
  • Pray also for the ISOM students, that they would grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, and put into practice what they are learning.
Thank you for praying for the Lord's work here in Eswatini!
Love, Randy and Karen
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