October 2016 Prayer Letter

October 2016 Prayer Letter

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September/October 2016

            The Kuwaa Mission would like to thank our many supporters – individuals, couples, families and congregations for your prayers and financial contributions.  We would like to take this opportunity to suggest other ways you can assist the Kuwaa Mission and the Kuwaa people.

            We are so grateful for the efforts of those who represent the Kuwaa Mission to their congregations.  Congregational representatives tell the story of the Kuwaa Mission to their fellow members and encourage special offerings and events to raise money for specific projects such as a well or children’s bible school.  If you would like to help us with this, please contact our board member Karen Voris at Karen.Voris@kuwaamission.org   As a congregational representative, you could inform your members of these other ways to help:

            If you have insurance through Thrivent, you can help the Kuwaa people by choosing the Kuwaa Mission for their Thrivent Choice dollars program.  Thrivent has provided over 300 million dollars to charities since 2010.  Go to this website: https://www.thrivent.com/making-a-difference/living-generously/thrivent-choice/ and choose the “Kuwaa Mission” to help us receive these funds through Thrivent.

           Another opportunity to assist the Kuwaa Mission is every time you do your online shopping with Amazon.   For eligible purchases, the Kuwaa Mission receives .05% of your payment.  You order through smile.amazon.com – same products and prices  – but we get a small portion as a donation from Amazon.  For more information, and to register the Kuwaa Mission as your charity, please go to this website: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/aw/ch/about

Our “Kondesu Clinic” that we constructed two years ago is fully functional and supported by the Liberian Ministry of Health.  Due to funding problems from the national ministry, as is typical of all Liberian Ministries from the national government, the clinic does not receive supplies and medicines as frequently as needed.  Please help us buy supplies and medicines in Liberia to take to the clinic please mark your gift “Clinic Supplies”.  Our website: www.kuwaamission.org has all the information as to where to send your support.   Thank you!

          We covet your prayers!  Please pray for the Kuwaa Mission  – that our work with the Kuwaa people continues in Liberia with safe travel and sufficient travel funding.  Please pray for healing for Rev. Richard Thompson, a founding member of the Kuwaa Mission.  Please pray for the Kuwaa people and all the citizens of Liberia that they continue to be free of Ebola and that they receive increased resources for clean water and medical care.  Please pray that the Living Water, Jesus Christ, is accepted into their lives and hearts.

            We thank God for you – for your heartfelt prayers and generous support.

            Jenny Cosgrove for the Kuwaa Mission

 Your contributions to The Kuwaa Mission are tax-deductible.  We are a 501c3 non-profit organization.  Our Tax ID number is 27-5458111

Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458 www.bethanyslidell.org

 

How much do you like your coffee?

While I really enjoy my cup of coffee in the morning I can honestly say I have never bought a cup at one of the many drive thru coffee shops.  They seem to sprout like rabbits, especially here in Anchorage, AK.  Therefore I can also say that I don’t really know how much one costs.  I am willing to bet that many people buy more than one per day.

Assuming that one costs $2.00 (and I bet it’s more than that) buying one cup a day for just the normal work week the cost is $10.  Projecting that over a 50 week year (I’ll give you a break for vacation) you’ve spent $500 just for coffee!!  We have well over 100 individual donors and if everyone spent that much for coffee the cost would be $50,000!! Just think how many people could have life saving clean water for $50,000.

Historically over the past 7 years a typical well for us to install in remote tropical Liberia is in the vicinity of $9000 depending on transportation which is our single largest expense.  The population of most of the villages we are working in is in the 500-700 range.  $50,000 would then give life giving water via nearly 6 wells to an average of 600 people per town or a total of 3,600 people.  For just one year this is 1,314,000 servings of clean potable, and palatable, water.  Or just over $0.03 per serving.  WHAT IS YOUR WATER BILL??

I’m not asking you give up your coffee but I do ask you to consider how far your donation to providing clean water goes.  We have NO overhead, all our income goes directly to supporting our programs in Liberia.  Please prayerfully consider making a donation to help us provide this life saving water.

Thank you,

Stan Olsen

CEO Kuwaa Mission

Thank You to WaterHope!

The Kuwaa Mission just received word that we have been approved by Water Hope to receive a grant to install three wells this year.  This is great news and the first grant that we have been approved for.  Water Hope is an organization that not only funds work done by other NGO’s but also does their own work internationally providing safe drinking water.

We are very proud and thankful for this grant and hope to partner with Water Hope in years to come.  Please check out their website at www.waterhope.org.

Greetings From Liberia!

On Saturday, October 8, there is an opportunity for the world-wide Lutheran church.  The Mission EinWelt (Mission One World) of the German church is sponsoring a virtual church gathering featuring Lutheran leaders from all over the world.

The Lutheran Church in Liberia is one of two churches from the continent of Africa who are presenting at this event. The event runs all day and can be accessed on the internet.

From the Lutheran Church in Liberia,  participants will be Rev. D. Jensen Seyenkulo,  Bishop of the LCL;  Rev. Xaster Yarkpazuo,  Pastor of St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, Monrovia (where I serve as Associate Pastor),  and Rev. Oretha Miller Davis, Senior Pastor of the St. Matthew’s Lutheran Parish,  Monrovia.

I invite you to get a group together and participate in this event—-or participate in it yourself.  It promises to be a great worship experience and a chance to learn and engage with Lutherans from other contexts.

Here is the website.  It will tell you what time the events of the virtual church festival are happening in your area of the world.

www.churchfestival.org

Blessings on your work–and on your weekend!

Rev. Linda Johnson Seyenkulo
ELCA Missionary
Curriculum Developer/Trainer
Louis T. Bowers Lay Leaders and Ministers Training Center
Associate Pastor, St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church
Totota,Liberia and Monrovia, Liberia

August 2016 Prayer Letter

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August 2016

As the summer draws to a close we at the Kuwaa Mission hope that you had an enjoyable summer and were able to spend some quality family time and enjoy God’s great outdoors.

The Board of the Kuwaa Mission greatly appreciates all the support that we have received over the past year.  July marked the beginning of a new fiscal year for us and as a result of matching funds from employers we start this year on a very sound fiscal footing.  As you consider your financial gifts to the Kuwaa Mission please check with your employer to see if they have matching funds program.  We are a 501c3 organization with the IRS and can provide you, or your employer, with any information required.  This program makes a huge difference in the amount of work we are able to do to serve the Kuwaa people.

I also ask each of you to consider being a “Mission Member” in your congregation.  As a “Mission Member” we ask you to carry the Kuwaa Mission program directly and frequently to your congregation by speaking about the work we have accomplished, our financial needs, and the programming we have planned for upcoming seasons.  We will provide you with brochures, videos, fundraising ideas and all the prayer support one could ask for.  We do receive good congregational support from congregations across the US but we need to increase this support base.  While we realize that much of our individual support comes through the local congregation we also have a line item in our budget for “congregational support” and we are looking to increase our financial support here as well.  As a “Mission Member” we also ask you to visit other congregations in your geographical area and spread the word about the Kuwaa Mission.  There are many congregations that have a mission program, or would like to start one, and just need a bit of direction.  Every new congregation that supports our work is a valuable member of our team.  Please contact our congregational coordinator: Karen Voris at kvoris@kuwaamission.org and we will work with you to serve the Kuwaa people.

Many, if not most, of you receiving this newsletter use “Facebook”.  Please consider passing on the work of the Kuwaa Mission to your “friends”.  The Kuwaa Mission website receives many “hits” and the more “hits” we receive the more support we will receive, both financial and prayer support.

This coming work season in Liberia I will be travelling into the Kuwaa area with the Bishop of the Lutheran Church in Liberia, Rev. Dr. Daniel Jensen Seyenkulo, and meeting with the Kuwaa tribal leaders and the local commissioner to thank them for the support we have been given and to work with them to increase the support base with the people.  Rev. Seyenkulo is one of the founders of the Kuwaa Mission and it is through our excellent relationship with the Lutheran Church in Liberia (LCL) that we have been able to reach out to so many Liberians.  Bishop Seyenkulo thanked me today for all the support we have been able to provide to the Kuwaa people working with and through the LCL. It is because of people like you that we have accomplished so much.

 Thank you again for your support and please contact Karen Voris for additional information on how you can become a “Mission Member”.

Stan Olsen, CEO Kuwaa Mission

 Your contributions to The Kuwaa Mission are tax-deductible.  We are a 501c3 non-profit organization.  Our Tax ID number is 27-5458111

Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458 www.bethanyslidell.org

 

July 2016 Prayer Letter

July 2016 Prayer Letter

 

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July 2016

THE KUWAA MISSION – KIDS4KUWAA PROJECT

Fall will soon be upon us and many Sunday Schools and Christian Schools will be selecting some of the missions that they will pray for and support this coming school year. If you are looking for a children’s mission project, Kids4Kuwaa in Liberia would be an excellent choice to consider and pray about. They need our prayers and support.

Consider that half the children in Liberia die before they reach the age of 10. Many die due to childhood and tropical diseases along with malnutrition. Children must pay to go to school and they must have uniforms or they cannot attend. They need school supplies. Their desks are often just wooden planks. Kuwaa children live in remote villages. Only a very few are on the motor road so there is limited schooling and even more limited medical facilities and help.

These factors are currently being addressed by the Kuwaa Mission. We and our supporters have built a clinic in Kondesu which is staffed by a nurse that attended nursing school with our scholarship help. We currently have helped to build and repair bridges that allow for easier transportation by motor bike or by foot to the farthest villages. We are currently seeking information from the Dept of Education in Liberia so that we can assist the teachers to get better training with workshops we can provide.

Kids4Kuwaa was the idea of a young Lutheran girl in Alaska who had a heart for these very children. She collected “noisy” offerings in her church services in little tin pails. Since then the Kuwaa Mission has promoted Kids4Kuwaa within Sunday Schools and Christian Schools.The Liberian children deserve to live longer, be healthy, and a quality education. They are the future leaders of the Lutheran church and Liberia.

To assist you with this project, we have a children’s Liberian Coloring book for you to photocopy and colorful bookmarks for the children.  Please contact us if you would like to have any or both of these items for your mission project this coming school year.

Diane Stelling

dstelling@kuwaamission.org

Kuwaa Mission Board Member

 Your contributions to The Kuwaa Mission are tax-deductible.  We are a 501c3 non-profit organization.  Our Tax ID number is 27-5458111

Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458 www.bethanyslidell.org

 

May 2016 Prayer Letter

May 2016 Prayer Letter

 

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May 2016

Give thanks to God for his Holy Son, Jesus Christ, for he has risen. Risen, indeed!

I was very excited to be invited to Lutheran Church of the Pines in Waveland, MS (pastor Brock Cain) on April 10, 2016. It was a very wonderful opportunity to share the Kuwaa Mission story with the Sunday morning Bible Study classes that consisted of all ages. They were very interested about the life and needs of the Kuwaa people in Liberia, West Africa.   The members were pleasantly surprised to learn that a member of their church, Rev. Dick Thompson, was one of the founders of the Kuwaa Mission seven years ago, and actually lived among the Kuwaa people for 10 years, translating the New Testament into their language.. After the presentation, the Sunday School was excited to learn what their church could do for the Kuwaa people.

We were invited to a wonderful dinner hosted by Dick & Shirley Holterman at their beautiful home, The discussion continued about what their church could do for the Kuwaa people. We talked about funding for clean water wells, education, health, roads, bridges and volunteers. But most of all the need for prayers and spiritual guidance for the Kuwaa Mission and the Kuwaa People. Thank you so much for the invitation to introduce the Kuwaa Mission to the Lutheran Church of the Pines. My husband Eddie and I thank you all for your Southern hospitality.  ?
I also had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Terry King, a representative of Thrivent Financial, who is eager to list the Kuwaa Mission with Choice Dollars, a Thrivent Financial charity site. If you are a Thrivent member and receive this newsletter, please ask your local rep. what you can do financially for the KM. If you are not a Thrivent member, please know that anyone can join Thrivent! Check out their website.
?I have personally served on the KM Board of Directors for several years now, and it is time for my term to end. I have served on the board as the Event Coordinator. I can truly say it has been a great journey serving the Lord and working with the generous and humble fellow board members. The Kuwaa Mission is looking for volunteers.
Please visit the Kuwaa website for more information on how you can serve.

May the Lord richly bless you all.

Lolitha Shepard

 Your contributions to The Kuwaa Mission are tax-deductible.  We are a 501c3 non-profit organization.  Our Tax ID number is 27-5458111

Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

PDF version

MS Word version

Unsubscribe – Edit your subscription

The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458 www.bethanyslidell.org

 

March Prayer Letter-2016

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March 2016

We greet each other in many ways, such as: The Lord be with you. And also with you. Good morning.

The typical Kuwaa greeting is: Mu wuhnee nu veh?  Kajeh Ngala deh.   

The translation is: How was your sleeping place? Thank God.

The greeting tells us a lot about the Kuwaa People.

They thank God that they woke up this morning. Sometimes, they’ll say, “Thank God for life.”

Last night, I slept on a pillow top mattress in a climate controlled room. I had to go to the bathroom in the night, and it was not uncomfortable. It was only a few steps from the bed, also climate controlled.  I sat restfully and after flushing, I won’t have to worry about that waste again. My cats sleep on the bed with me, in places of their choosing. They are well cared for -plenty to eat, clean water to drink, a clean bathroom of their own, and vaccines to keep them healthy.  I don’t have their teeth cleaned, as some pet-owners do, because they don’t enjoy traveling to the vet. I once even saw a dog with braces at the vet. His teeth were so crooked it was hard for him to eat. That’s a very special dog.  An American dog.  Oh, the opulent lives we live as Americans. And yet, we find things to complain about.

So, how was your sleeping place?  Did any rats run across your bed in the night? Did they eat your ground peas stored in the roof- the fruits of your hard labor that you planned to carry through the jungle for 2 days to the market?  Did the wind take your roof off?  Did the rain come through the roof? Did everyone in your household wake up alive?  If you woke up this morning, then you can thank God.

Sometimes people ask me what I learn from trips to the Kuwaa Chiefdom. There are many lessons.  First, I learn gratitude.  I thank God for waking me up this morning. I’m thankful for my cozy sleeping place.  I’m thankful for the health and safety of my family members.  I also learn that if I “Let go and let God”, things will work out better for me than if I try to control my life. I listen to God’s calling and try to do His will.  God provides what we need, if not everything that we want. I learn humility. Relationships are so much more valuable than things. I learn that with God, all things are possible.  I do not claim credit for the things God has done.  To God be the glory.  Our God is a mighty God!

My experiences in the Kuwaa Chiefdom also bring questions to mind.  Why is it that people who have so little in the way of material possessions put a high value on their relationship with God?  Why are they thankful for their very lives?  On the other hand, why do people with so much material wealth lack the spirituality that is much more valuable than all those burdensome things?

I can feel the presence of the Holy Spirit when worshiping with the Liberians, whether in a half hour daily Chapel service at the Lutheran Church in Liberia in Monrovia, a 3 hour New Year’s celebration at a beautiful church, or in a mud hut with a thatched roof.  For wherever two or more are gathered in My name, I am there. His presence is felt.

I believe that the Kuwaa people live closer to God than we do.  They say that America is the second heaven. And yet, they live much closer to God than we do.  They must listen to Him for their very survival. They live only by God’s grace. And still they are thankful. For life.

Go in peace, serve the Lord.

THANKS BE TO GOD!!!

 By Cindy Bye

 Your contributions to The Kuwaa Mission are tax-deductible.  We are a 501c3 non-profit organization.  Our Tax ID number is 27-5458111

Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

PDF Version and MS Word versions of this letter

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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458 www.bethanyslidell.org

 

Jan-Feb 2016 Prayer Letter

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Happy New Year 2016

Happy New Year, on behalf of the Kuwaa people of Liberia, West Africa.  As we look forward to 2016 we ask for your continued prayers and financial support as our work continues in Liberia.  

Romans 12:4-5
“For as in one body we have many members, and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another.”  

At the end of January, Cindy Ellis Bye once again traveled to Liberia.  During her time there they hope to accomplish many things.  Repairs will be made to old wells in Kondesu, Goleta, Kalata and Kpaulazu, and a new well will be completed in Goleta.  We  ask for your continued prayers for her while she is there and for the people of Liberia, especially our brothers and sisters in Christ among the Kuwaa.

The Kuwaa Mission is a 501c3 charity, your donations are fully tax deductible and don’t forget  to ask your employer about matching donations.  Our Tax ID number is 27-5458111

Ways to become involved as individuals or with your congregation:

Mission Possible Club – Congregations or groups pledge to pray regularly for the Mission and financially support it.
 
Kids4Kuwaa – Children get involved in prayer and financial support for the Mission and the Kuwaa people.  They support  the Mission by school and Sunday School offerings and fund raisers.

$12 Klub 4 Kuwaa – A program to get 1,000 people to give at least $1 a month.

Coffee Clatch 4 Kuwaa – An opportunity for women and women’s groups to get involved.

 Your contributions to The Kuwaa Mission are tax-deductible.  We are a 501c3 non-profit organization.

Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

PDF and MS Word versions

Unsubscribe – Edit your subscription

The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458

www.bethanyslidell.org

 

Merry Christmas 2015

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Christmas 2015

On behalf of the Kuwaa people of Liberia, West Africa, we wish you all a most Blessed Merry Christmas  2015  and  Happy New Year 2016.

The Kuwaa Christians celebrate Christmas much as we do. They observe Advent in their churches and many of their houses will have simple Christmas decorations. The women will dress up in their finest lappa garments. The children learn Christmas carols in school along with the Christmas story. There will be  church services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Often they will have a community feast on Christmas Day, sharing the food as we do with our church pot lucks.

Thank you so much  for your continued prayers and financial support of the Kuwaa Mission as we share the Word made flesh, Jesus Christ, with our Kuwaa brothers and sisters in Christ. In 2016 we will be doing the following: digging a new well, conducting VBS classes, offering sanitation training, assisting local evangelists, supplying medications for the recently completed medical clinic in Kondesu, and building a number of bridges sorely needed for the access to the clinic and access between the villages. Please keep our busy 2016 work program in your thoughts and prayers throughout the year. We will be providing you with frequent up-dates as the work progresses.

Yours in Christ for the Kuwaa,

Ed and Diane Stelling, former missionaries to the Kuwaa with Lutheran Bible Translators, 1973-1979.

 Your contributions to The Kuwaa Mission are tax-deductible.  We are a 501c3 non-profit organization.

Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

PDF Version and MS Word versions of this letter

Unsubscribe – Edit your subscription

The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458 www.bethanyslidell.org