Monday, January 22, 2018

January 2018 Update

"2017 Poindi, 2018 Raandi" means "2017 is gone; come 2018" in the Telugu language spoken at HOPE. For those who donated to RHM in 2017, you should have received, or should be receiving your 2017 donation receipt soon. If you haven't received it within the next week or two, please inform me.

Wow, what a busy time it's been here over the last month or so! Christmas, thankfully, is always a busy time for both the HOPE and Morning Star ministries. There's lots of ministry to believers, children and unbelievers, as well as distributing gifts to them to demonstrate the love of Christ in a tangible way. Scroll down the page to see some photos of gifts which were given to various groups. Thanks to all the donors who had a part in our 2017 Christmas programs!

Three prayer requests:
1. Pray for our HOPE boy Gopi (10), who broke his arm a couple of days ago, apparently having a bicycle accident. Poor kid, he was REALLY in pain, with a lot of swelling to go along with it. The doctors set his arm in place (it was way out of joint), and now have him in a cast. Pray for the protection of the children in both the HOPE and MS girls homes, for the HOPE boys, and the children in our HOPE School. By His grace, we haven't had any broken bones in either girls' home, and no big mishaps in the school. But our boys have had a few fractures, with this possibly being the first actual bones which have been broken.

2. Pray for the staffs of both HOPE and the Morning Star. Lord willing, I should be shifting to our boys home property within the next few weeks. Already we have had need for at least one more Godly helper at HOPE, who hears the call of GOD to work with children, but who really has His love for them as well. Seems to be tough to find, even in the Body of Christ! The Morning Star has been having some internal struggles with division and strife, so also greatly need your prayers.

3. Pray for new donors!!!!!

As I shared with you last month, here's a couple of more links in case you're interested:
1. I've combined the RHM Facebook page with my personal page (a lack of time to try and maintain 2 pages). The name of the page is RHM/Dan .
2. Probably very few of you are aware of the different ministries and needs which the Lord is using RHM to help with. The following link will open up a PDF file which gives a basic overview of what we're involved in: RHM Overview 
Thanks always for your love, prayers and support. Scroll down for much more info via the photos and captions. Bless you!

Dan, RHM
"Pure religion and undefiled in the sight of our GOD and Father is this: to visit the orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the
world." James 1:27 

Above: Pastors who come to the Morning Star once a month for a seminar and fellowship, very happy after receiving new coats and some extra cash for their families or ministries. A big thanks to the donor who is sponsoring this pastors' fellowship! 
Above: Although mostly younger women (ages 35 to 50, but some older), they all are widows whose husbands were killed or died because of persecution. I hope the Lord has healed many of their hearts, and here they are rejoicing for the new blankets they received for Christmas. They also received some clothes via the Morning Star. 
Above: These are widows (5 of them, their husbands died because of persecution; the other was already a widow, and her only son was killed) from a different area, standing with MS pastors after receiving some Christmas gift. 
Above: Other widows, elderly and handicapped poor from the village of Katapadi, receiving some gift at Christmas time. Their Morning Star pastor is at the far right. 
Above: 25 precious girls from the Morning Star Girls Home, wearing some new clothes they received at Christmas time. Most of them also came into the home as a result of their family somehow being affected by persecution. 
Above: Praise the Lord that RHM has also had the blessed opportunity to be a channel of funds for some families whose Christian fathers/husbands are in prison. These are some of the wives after receiving blankets, clothes and cash at Christmas. 
Above: These are the 15 pastors affiliated with the Morning Star, doing ministry in at least that many villages, most of them poor tribal villages. What a BLESSING to be able to be a part of assisting these humble men! 
Above: MS pastors Ajit (left), his father Diwakar, and Jereha (with microphone) lighting candles for a birthday cake during the December pastors meeting. Many places have the tradition of having a birthday cake during the recognition of our Lord's birth. 
Above: They don't get much cuter than these, HOPE girls Anusha (left) and Aksha, both 7 years old. 
Above: Brother Alan from Nashville is sharing a story with the HOPE girls, Sister Buelah translating. Alan and his brother Steve visited HOPE in early December. 
Above: A little HOPE School boy sharing a memory Scripture during the school Christmas program, HOPE elders and a pastor in the background. 
Above: Brother Emmanuel, who does ministry with our HOPE widows in the Manna Program, along with HOPE boys with their new Christmas clothes. Gopi, whom I mentioned above has broken his arm, is the tallest boy next to Emmanuel. 
Above: Hope girls ranging from kindergarten to 4th grade, along with Jean Joy in the back (17 years old). All are happy with new Christmas clothes. 
Above: Standing next to our HOPE night watchman, Ganga Raju, and (from left) our cooks Nirmala and Vijaya Rani, our precious elderly who live in HOPE, Subbamma and Kotamma, and our Aunty Deenamma, who helps with the girls. 

Sunday, December 31, 2017

December 2017 Newsletter

Above: HOPE's 12 year old girl Sudha Rani is praying before a good crowd of children and adults who attended our Christmas Program in the village of Krupa Colony. 
Dear RHM Friends,
"I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; from where shall my help come?" Psalms 121:1
"To You I lift up my eyes, O You who are enthroned in the heavens!" Psalms 123:1 

Sometimes our eyes are on the wrong things: on the problem, on the sickness, on the words of man, on the lack, on the wrong that's been done, whatever. When our eyes are on the wrong thing, our peace and hope fly out the window. This year has largely been a year of financial and spiritual struggles. But if that's where our meditation is, what does it accomplish? Does worrying, fearing or complaining bring about better results? Not likely. We need to lift up our eyes, away from the circumstance, and cry to the One who is faithful. Hallelujah! 
Please check out the December Newsletter, mainly covering two topics: 1. the blessing of the Lord that has come about via the HOPE Christmas programs, and also His financial blessing in providing for everything we had envisioned for ministry during this Christmas season.
2. An appeal for end-of-the-year giving. With only 4 days remaining in 2017, it looks pretty bleak compared to previous years. Last year, there was a precious outpouring of donations during December, over $39,000 given only in that month (a lot for this small ministry to the poor). This December, up to today (28th), almost $14,000 has been given.

Praise GOD for the $14,000! But do you notice a little gap between last year and this year? If the Lord touches your heart to help boost those figures, it will be a great blessing for this ministry as we head into 2018. End of the year giving often helps strengthen the financial position of ministries, as they sometimes (as we have this year) experience some very lean seasons of giving. 

Thanks always for your prayers and support. Bless you.
Dan, RHM 

December 2017 Update

Dear RHM Friends,
In their fields at night, the shepherds "were terribly frightened. But the angel said to them, 'Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people." Luke 2:9-10 I especially like the part about this good news being "to ALL the people"! Not just a select few, but "GOD so loved THE WORLD" (John 3:16), "desires ALL men to be saved" (1 Timothy 2:4), and is "not wishing for ANY to perish but for ALL to come to repentance" (2 Peter 3:9). Sounds like GOOD NEWS to me!

An update on Sravanthi and Spandana, 2 girls we recently raised funds for: Sravanthi's marriage date is not firmly set, but we think it might be in January or February. Spandana has started her teachers training course, and it looks like the money you gave will be sufficient. Praise the Lord for our generous donors!

CHRISTMAS: Money has began coming in for all the 2017 Christmas activities via RHM, for which we are very thankful. We still need at least $3,000 more to meet all our goals. Included in the November newsletter, here again is a condensed list of what the Lord has placed on our hearts for this season:
1. Providing gifts for the HOPE and Morning Star children (59 girls, 10 boys) and staff. This usually means clothes, as that seems to be the most wanted item here in this culture.
2. This year, because we’re not able to have clothes ready by Christmas, we’re planning to purchase small gifts for about 200 kids who come to our Christmas programs from 7 different villages.
3. Regardless of funds, we feel compelled to give a new dress to each of our 130 or so Manna Program elderly and handicapped.
4. Providing snacks and paying other small expenses for all of the Christmas programs connected with HOPE: one for the home, one for the school, and programs in 5 villages (the school has about 230 children total).
5. Giving small Christmas bonuses for our HOPE home and school staffs, and for Morning Star staff. Last year, based on available funds, we gave a total of about $1,450 for 27 staff members, nearly $54 for each one. Not much by American standards, but most things are cheaper here, and they were happy.

A reminder about our GIRLS HOME PROJECT, currently raising funds for a new HOPE Girls Home. The project also includes another 1/4 acre of land, a chapel, dining hall and kitchen. Please pray, and give as He leads you. Click here to learn more about the project.

A couple of more links in case you're interested:
1. I've combined the RHM Facebook page with my personal page (a lack of time to try and maintain 2 pages). The name of the page is RHM/Dan.
2. Probably very few of you are aware of the different ministries and needs which the Lord is using RHM to help with. The following link will open up a PDF file which gives a basic overview of what we're involved in: RHM Overview 
Many larger ministries will make appeals daily for funds for their various needs and projects. We will try to control ourselves and keep it down to only one email every several days for the rest of this month. Respond only as He leads you, and know that whatever you give, very little goes for overhead; the great majority goes to touching lives in JESUS' Name. No one on the admin side of RHM (including myself) receives any salary. I receive only what people donate specifically for my behalf, but occasionally I may take from general funds if that support is not enough. The Lord is always faithful! For those interested in seeing our 2016 financial records, click here for the Financial Accountability page of our website.

Thanks always for your love, prayers and support. Scroll down for much more info via the photos and captions. Bless you!

Dan, RHM
 

Above: Jean Joy (blue dress) and other HOPE girls are leading action songs during aSunday School in the tribal village of Nandayapalem. Most of the village children who attend are part of Hindu families. This village will probably be the first of 5 different Christmas programs in villages this year, starting this next Friday (15th). 
Above: Our 2nd HOPE Christmas program is scheduled for next Sunday, the 17th, in this village church in Chinthayapalem. This village is where our Boys Home and Widows Home is located, and is the only one of the 7 villages that we're doing children's ministry in which has its own Sunday School. Here, Sadha (16) is giving opportunity to village girl Lavanya to sing, Jean Joy on the drums. 
Above: These little ones (not sure which are boys or girls) are from the village of Krupa Colony, where we're planning to have our 3rd Christmas program on the 22nd of this month (a Friday). Sharing the schedule for those who might pray for these meetings. 
Above: Because of having 3 village programs, our home program, and HOPE School Christmas program from the 15th to 25th, we're planning to have a couple of other meetings after Christmas Day. The 4th program is scheduled for the 27th in this village church in Reddipalem. Many of the children who attend the children's meetings here are also from Hindu homes, most all the people in this village living in huts. 
Above: A typical "Sunday School" class in the villages, here in Nandayapalem in early November. HOPE girls are sitting on the right and playing the drum, with Suvarna (13) leading songs. The 3 other girls singing are village girls. 
Above: HOPE boys singing during last year's Christmas program in the tribal village of Kondu Botlavaripalem. Because most of the villagers were gone much of 2017 working in other places, we did very few Sunday Schools in this village. So we're not having a Christmas program here this year, but inviting them to join us in nearby Nandayapalem. 
Above: These also are Kondu Botlavaripalem children doing an action song during last year's Christmas program, with Jean Joy leading. 
Above: Seventh grader Jahnavi is honoring our friend Steve (visiting from the Chicago area, USA) during a HOPE School morning assembly this last week. Happy to have Steve and his brother visit us for a couple of days. Our principal, Brother Isaac, is at left. 
Above: This is Steve's brother, Alan (from Nashville, USA), getting honored with a garland by another 7th grader, Sindhu. 
Above: Morning assembly in the HOPE School (upstairs from the HOPE Girls Home, which is downstairs). Sister Buelah ("Mommy") is sharing a few words about Brothers Alan and Steve. There's at least 70 or 80 more children to the left of these children, a total of about 230 in our HOPE School at this time. 
Above: Pastors gathered together for the monthly Pastors Seminar at the Morning Star. Very happy about how the Lord is using these meetings to help encourage pastors. 
Above: Precious HOPE boys on Chandu's 12th birthday (boy on left) in September. 
Above: Happy HOPE girls with Mommy. 
Above: Sravani (10) and Mary (12) showing their crosses and box which they painted during a recent painting project in HOPE. These 2 girls have very nice behavior.