Our team has grown a lot over the past few years, adding more young families to the team. During the last 2 years we’ve been blessed by the presence of an experienced teacher, Marilyn Scraver, who’s patience, stick-to-itiveness, and kindness have blown me away. How did she put up with 9 missionary kids of different grade levels and then sign up again for a second year!? I’m sure she’d answer, “It was only by the grace of God,” but I also know she enjoyed the challenge. What an amazing, tenacious lady.
We’re sad to see Marilyn go, but so pleased that she was able to be a part of our children’s lives. Even though our kids participated only two days a week, I could see her enthusiasm rub off onto them and their love for learning grow because of her influence.
Here’s a poem from some of her students:
Aunt Marilyn has lots of energy, even though she’s short.
We don’t mind at all, because she’s a happy sort.
She wears lots of colors, but her favorites are blues.
And when we sometimes lose them, she always finds our shoes.
Bible verses, spelling, she’s taught us many things.
History and reading and flying things with wings.
For clean desks she always gives a treat.
She only does this because she’s very sweet.
She is always honest, and she’s very kind.
People like Aunt Marilyn are very hard to find.
by Leslie & AnnMarie Buczak with the help of Diana Duncan
We received some exciting news last month, that will allow us to conduct the teacher seminars we’ve been planning for the summer months. Tyndale House has approved a grant of $18,000 for teacher training and curriculum development! This is the same grant that we received in 2015 that allowed us to develop Kindergarten Bible curriculum. That’s one of the items needing revision.
A couple years ago, Andrew visited the classroom of a new teacher that had been recently hired by one of our schools and who had never had any training with us. All the student books, textbooks, posters, and charts were sitting in boxes on the floor unused. He had never been trained to use any of those materials so the kids never even saw them. That day served as a reminder that curriculum development and teacher training must go hand in hand. Please pray that we’ll have wisdom to be good stewards of the money God’s provided for the schools and that this summer’s efforts will be effective.
This week, we received some pictures from our teammate, Joan, of a class that was held this week at the Bible Institute in Kara!
This is the view from Joan’s apartment in Kara. The large green roofed building in the back is the orphanage and next to it (hidden from view) is the Bible Institute.
And this week, 7 men have been attending class on that campus!
Honoré (pictured below), an ABWE missionary and Togolese National, is teaching the class. Here, they are focusing specifically on John 20:30-31.
“Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book.But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”
This and last school year, the Lord has blessed us with a wonderful teacher for our missionary kids. Marilyn Scraver invested two years of her heart into our kids. However, in June, she plans to retire. Aunt Marilyn’s time here has allowed us missionary moms to apply ourselves to other work and ministries on our team. We are all prepared to homeschool again next year, but it would cause us to have to minimize what we are able to do for our team.
Would you please pray with us that God might send us another teacher for 1-2 years to teach our elementary aged MKs? Contact us to learn more!
We want to invite you to celebrate Christmas with Hôpital Baptiste Biblique this year! As we enter the Christmas season, our hearts express gratitude to God for the gift of Christ who came to save. Give a gift of physical and spiritual healing to those in Togo. Check out this link to our 2018 Christmas Catalog and see how you can make a difference!
Early Sunday morning, we drove to a small church on top of the mountain. The ABWE leadership is visiting Togo. The vice president, Dave Woodard, is preaching this morning at a mountain church behind Hôpital Baptiste Biblique. He speaks on having a relationship with Jesus. To help illustrate his sermon, he points to a young boy sitting in the front row.
“I don’t know this boy or his name. So, how can I be his friend?” Dave then extends his hand in greeting and asks what the boy’s name is.
The boy replies, “My name is Prosper.”
Dave explains, “I now know Prosper’s name. However, I still don’t really know him. Likewise, many people have heard of the name of Jesus. But they don’t know Him.”
Dave takes a seat next to Prosper. “Now, if I spent some time with Prosper and talked with him, then we could say we are friends.”
Dave goes on to explain that if we want to grow in our relationship with Christ, we need to spend time with Him. To be a follower of God you don’t want to keep your relationship with God a secret. You want to tell others! “If I’m good friends with Prosper, I want to tell others about Prosper!”
Dave walks to the next pew where a young girl was sitting. “Hi, would you like to meet my friend Prosper?”
The girl smiles big as she wiggles in her seat and nods her head.
Dave finishes by saying, “We need to be actively telling others about Jesus and what he did for us on the cross.”
A year ago, Paul Davis was appointed president of ABWE. Since then, he has been traveling the world visiting the different countries where ABWE works. On this trip it was Togo’s turn.
“ABWE’s vision has not changed,” Paul stated during a Sunday night worship service at the missionary guesthouse. “As the new president, the most common question I’m asked is, ‘What is your new vision?’” Paul explained, “Our vision is to fulfill the Great Commission by multiplying leaders, churches, and missions movements among every people.”
ABWE has been around for 90 years. It’s encouraging that the vision has remained the same throughout all 90 years and that the vision still rings true in Togo. During the leadership team’s time in Togo, they were able to experience first-hand the variety of ministries here. The ministries vary from medical and Christian education, to aviation and church planting, and more.
On HBB campus
It was an encouragement to have the leadership team out in Togo, and it was exciting to be able to show off some of the amazing work God is doing through the ministries here. We look forward to them coming back again to see more of the marvelous work that God is doing here in Togo.
The Mallay family served at Hôpital Baptiste Biblique from December 2016-January 2018. When their oldest daughter, Arwen experienced health problems, they returned to the States. She was diagnosed with cancer and has been in treatment since then. The article in the following link was written by Arwen Mallay for the World Medical Mission/Samaritan’s Purse Magazine this summer.
The truth is true whether I like it or not. Whether I know it or not. Whether I believe it or not. But sometimes I’ll say I believe something and I really think I do believe that thing, but when it is tested, I’ll run to what I ACTUALLY believe. . . . Read more by Jessica Miller at Believe it? Or not? — Life Without Borders
The airplane was released from port with some expected difficulty, but arrived at its home hangar on Thursday, December 7th. If you could have been there, you would have felt excitement in the air as everyone from those on the aviation team, to our employees, to missionary kids, to medical personnel from the hospital rejoiced together. It was a great event long anticipated.
The Buczak family
Opening the container
Unloading the plane
Just four days later, our family boarded a jetliner for a time at home for Stephanie’s sister’s wedding. It was a good month home, and we are now back in Togo and already submersed in our regular life and schedule.
Last week, Ryan and Joe, a missionary colleague working in Ghana, were able to put the airplane back together and perform its first run-ups. They also took a trip down to Lome to meet with aviation officials in order to obtain permission to fly in the country. The results of that trip were promising and we hope to be allowed to begin break-in flights later this week or early next week.
Please pray for safety on the first flights, that the airstrip will be smooth and the air clear. Most importantly, please pray that this ministry would be one that honors and glorifies the name of our God; that it would be a tool that magnifies Him alone.