Sept 2023 Newsletter
FROM SENIOR LEADER SCOT POPE:
Today we are remembering with gratitude all of our friends whom we love dearly and so greatly love us and dearly love the work of God He had given us to do. You who have stood by us and continue to do so—praying for us and for those to whom we are sent. Encouraging us, and partnering with us in prayer, in so many helps, and financially (going all the way back to my first return to India after many decades in 2006). Today we would like to encourage you, as the Word says: “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent?” Romans 10: 14-15 “For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.” (Hebrews 6:10) “…knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 15:58 What a great privilege it is for all of us to be permitted and sent to labor finding His gems, some of whom you read about in this newsletter. Your labor is bearing great fruit. All you have sown in the Spirit and what you have sacrificed in the financial realm, will continue to bear fruit and will be multiplied back to you and to many across the seas and in the US! Thank you for joining hands with us. With love and gratitude, Scot Pope, Senior Leader
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June to Now,
Patricia continued in India into June wrapping up discipleship til the fall. The heat caused so many problems yet there were salvations and healings. Hema, who is now starting her 5th year of law school, stayed close by Patricia’s side at the base. Hindu’s coming to help with the maintenance of the base gave their lives to Jesus as Savior and Lord – their whole family sought out a church near their residence and began attending and learning more about this Wonderful Savior and King. A new young couple came, sensing the Lord’s call to leave their professions (an Indian businessman and his wife, a pharmacist in the government hospital (where we minister!) and they joined our training for ministry. Such sweet days we had.
We returned from India in June. Scot returned early for medical treatment for a second degree burn. After treatment in India he got immediately worse and was advised to come home to the US for antibiotics. He went from the airport straight to the ER. The ER doctor said it should heal in 6 or so weeks, but he should see wound care. But four days later, he was healed – see the photos! Thank you, Jesus for your provision to healing us!
Above: Hema at Law School (in middle)
In the USA. we have been staying in North Carolina, engaging with a lovely local church of faithful believers. We have also been doing some ministry, even worship services and evangelism at the local mall with the permission of a business there. As we all know, the need in the US is huge. Homelessness, alcohol, drugs violence, fatherlessness. We see so few reach out as we have been led of the Holy Spirit to do, beyond food and blankets and an arms-length pray. We encourage every American believer, use wisdom and be led by the Holy Spirit, but hear His voice which will often, we are certain, tell us all to selflessly risk our well-being or pride, and where you are welcomed to do so, literally embrace people in such need as if you had found your long lost child. We are preaching to ourselves to maintain that heart in the US. We have never been in fear in these situations in India. We are called to be wise but to be fearless and selfless even in upfront and personal ways to show the love He is offering to all men.
Here is an example of what God can do
when we obey in this way:
In India, one day we and a young man we were discipling at our base, Vijay Ransomed, came upon a street beggar we did not know, - his fingers and toes mostly lost to leprosy, open sores on his legs, covered only in a short and a piece of fabric wrapped around his waste. He sat at the main intersection of the shopping district streets – bustling with the convergence of six roads, 12 or more lanes full of rickshaws, cars and many people walking. The bright colors seemed to meld like an Indian village dance. We had stopped our autorickshaw outside a sundries and were climbing the stairs to rush inside. We were on a mission to reach the government hospital burn ward before visiting hours were over with a small gift for the birthday of a 13 year old girl who had just suffered amputation of limbs after a horrific fire. I rushed by the man, as he asked for alms, I am sorry to say. But Vijay hesitated and said “Madam, shouldn’t we offer to pray for this man?” I said, “Yes, Vijay, you are right, we should pray for him.” Vijay and Scot laid hands on the lepers shoulders and I stood and prayed. But the Lord said to me, “If you will lay your hands on his bare legs, I will heal him.” I knew it was the Lord. My head clamored at my heart momentarily words like: ‘A woman cannot barely touch a man here in public much less on bare skin; he had open sores, we could cause a riot, we’ll be late, and more. These thoughts only confirmed to me that God had spoken, and I knew He will always do what He says He will. To the shock of all, I obeyed, covering his open sores with my palms and casting out the spirit of infirmity and of death, and declaring healing in the Name of Jesus by whose stripes we were healed. Immediately, the man jumped up, threw his crutches and began shouting with joy as a crowd gathered... “Vijay, what is he saying?” “He is shouting: ‘They gave me no money, only prayer to Jesus, look at me!’” Interpretation – ‘They did not pay me – Jesus truly healed me!’
As many of you know, India closed its doors to nearly all foreigners and we were only able to return to India Summer 2022. It was with total reliance on the Lord – what would we do after the pandemic’s disasterly effect? Without rehashing that, we saw the Lord open a new season in South India for us. Our street ministry continued despite new and bizarre persecution – 1st time we have been threatened on the streets by Hindus. One time, as we are looking to see beggars saved, a blind beggar saved us! One day we walked along one of the widest city streets as we usually do. This is called Beach Road as it parallels the beach, the Bay of Bengal, for miles through our city. Our base is just off this road. We got to know it because since 2010 this is where a huge number of beggars, homeless, and prostitutes ‘dwell’. While some have huts or lean-to homes in some faraway place, begging in the city is the most lucrative. Nightly the street lights up with tiny stands selling tea, corn roasted over coal, and “budgies’ – a popular street food. One of our former beggars even has a successful business there selling roast delicacies and is able to even educate her children without our help! But the beach is also where the beggars sleep in the intense midmorning to afternoon sun, on the pavement to avoid the hot sand. It is where we met all the beggar children we have taken in. It is our custom to walk miles at the times the beggars are there, ministering to them, praying and seeing many healed physically. But we also walk and pray on this road, its 4 mile paved length running north of our base, often after early morning worship on our rooftop before the heat becomes too much for the instruments – and us. So as we walked, far now from the beggars’ sleeping place, a Hare Krishna approached us with literature. He was not from our city, and well dressed in the Hare Krishna garb. Scot thanked him and immediately began to tell him in the love of God his own full knowledge of their beliefs and what he was missing………But immediately two men dressed as wealthy businessmen appeared. You never see men dressed like that here, and usually it means they are politicians or Central Intelligence. Now Scot was speaking but they began yelling at Patricia. They scared the Hare Krishna away as these angry men shouted in my face (Patricia) - “Why do you talk about this Jesus? Why? Tell me one thing this Jesus ever did for the people. HE did nothing. Tell me one thing.” I replied, “Well, he healed the sick and raised the dead, saved those who call on Him from hell, and is responsible for at least 95% of the charitable works in the world!” They were now enraged, in my face closer than comfortable, demanding my full name and country, my phone number. Though Scot raised his voice to demand they leave they continued screaming and causing quite the scene. Suddenly a beggar approaches, and on his arm is a blind beggar woman. Quite astoundingly – because they never approach men like these as they could be beaten for their shadow falling on high caste men – yes even today. The little lady somehow got in front of me and asked for prayer. Without a thought and with the yelling continuing, I laid hands on her and began to pray. I wish we had a video --- well because I touched her- I actually touched a beggar in her rags- the two men went into a shock of fear and ran -- I mean ran! We have not seen them again, but they saw the Gospel that day that this beggar whom God had already saved, saved us.
Love to Pray for & Share About
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