As many of you know, we have been working amongst the Nenet people in Northern Siberia for a couple years with a deep desire that a Calvary Chapel would be planted in that area. We were praying for the Lord to raise up someone willing to go to the Arctic Circle and share Christ amongst these unreached peoples on a full-time basis. Well around November I got an email from a Calvary Chapel missionary serving in Kyrgystan, David Markey (I just so happened to know some of his family), and he knew Russian, and had been praying for the Nenet peoples since going to the Bible College in Hungary! We set up a time to meet at the Calvary Chapel Missions Conference out in California in January. After that he came to visit with our missionaries working there in Siberia out in Philly a week later, and this past month actually visited Yamal to pray about working in that area full time! So I’m really excited about what the Lord is going to do there and I’m excited about the Markey family moving there – below is their latest newsletter where they write about the decision to move to Siberia. I would encourage you guys to be praying for them, and if the Lord leads you, to consider financially supporting them in this move.
Here is the latest news from my trip to Yamal (Siberia). We have a lot to share with you about how the Lord is leading. Thank you for partnering with us in this journey!
I arrived back in Bishkek on the 13th, and since then Deborah and I have had the opportunity to talk and pray together about future plans. The Lord has made it very clear that He is calling us to Yamal, literally translated “End of the World”.
It has been four and a half years since God laid it on our hearts to pray for the people groups that live in Yamal, which is in northern Siberia in the Arctic Circle. In God’s perfect timing I was able to take a trip to see first-‐hand the needs that are there.
Highlights of My Trip
- ·∙ I was able to share a train compartment for 58 hours with six Nenets (the people group we have been praying for that live in Yamal) and share the gospel with them.
- ·∙ I got to know the local pastor (Anatoli), as well as the Nenets pastor (Peter) in the church in Salekhard. They are both very excited about us coming, and they are willing/able to help us with all the necessary documents. What an answer to prayer!
- ·∙ I had the opportunity to travel to several cities with Pasha and Igor, two guys from Calvary Chapel Philly, and their band.
- ·∙ I attended a “Reindeer festival” close to a town named Oksarka.
- ·∙ I took a 3-‐day trip to the tundra on a snowmobile, where I got to fully experience the life of nomadic
Although we have had a burden for the people of this area for a long time, I did not know if we were being called to Yamal. Not knowing what to expect, I went to check it out. When I arrived in Yamal I was very well received. I stayed at a church in Salekhard called “Good News” where the pastor and congregation are very focused on reaching out. Not only did they welcome me with open arms, but also encouraged me to come with my family.
In Yamal as I got to experience different opportunities to reach out to the lost, I was able to see the needs of this area. The greatest need that I saw was for more churches to be planted. Even though many missionaries come, very few stay. Those people who accept the gospel then slowly go back into their old way of life because they have no discipleship.
As I traveled around the region of Yamal and spoke to various believers, I learned of a city named Oksarka. Oksarka, as far as I know, has no church. It is located in a strategically good place from which I could travel to many of the other towns that have a great need for church plants.
Over and over again, we have felt the Lord give us very specific leading and encouragement from Him regarding the Nenets people and the Yamal area. We now feel like we are supposed to be obedient and just go while the door is open!
We are planning to move to the town of Oksarka as soon as the Lord makes a way! Our visas for Kyrgyzstan expire June 6th. We are not sure if we should try and go before they expire, or if we should get a 3-‐month extension and be in Bishkek through the summer and for the church conference in August. Our first major prayer request is wisdom regarding the timing of when we should move!
Oksarka is surrounded by several other large towns that are also in need of churches. It is a 40-‐minute drive east of Salekhard, the bigger city in which I stayed while visiting. Please pray for vision for us as we plan to live in Oksarka and plant a church there. We would also like to reach out to the other towns located close by.
It is more expensive to live in this part of the world than here in Bishkek (mainly because the supplies have to be brought in from the South by train). Food, rent and utilities will be a little more than double the cost every month of what we currently receive in support. Our other main prayer request is financial provision-‐-‐for the move, as well as our monthly support.
At this moment, we are waiting for the Lord to show us His timing and provision to enable us to move. We are ready whenever He says go!
In summary, here are our specific prayer requests:
·∙ For the Lord to reveal His timing for this move
·∙ Financial provision for the cost of moving, as well as our monthly support
·∙ Vision for the ministry that will begin there
·∙ Salvation of the Nenets people!
·∙ For the peace that passes all understanding, to guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. We are excited about this next phase, yet at the same time, sad, as we prepare to say goodbye to family, friends, and the ministry team that we have had the privilege of being a part of over the past 3 years.
Please let us know if you have any questions/thoughts about this update.
Thank you so much for your prayers. We are so blessed by the support group the Lord has given us. In our next letter, we will share with you how the Lord is miraculously providing a team to go with us and also give you more information about the Nenets people.
David, Deborah, Abigail and Selah
Horizon Christian Fellowship
7702 Indian Lake Road
Indianapolis, Indiana 46236
Checks made out to: Horizon Christian Fellowship
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