Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year!
It is so exciting to be able to come to you at the end of this year and give you a report. What a year it has been. As many of you know, we have been in the States on furlough since June. It has been a good furlough, and we have traveled many miles, visited many churches, attended conferences, and enjoyed some much-needed time with family. God, as always, has been faithful all along the way.
First off, we want to take this time to thank you for being so faithful to us. We can say, without a doubt, that we have the best prayer warriors and supporters. Many of you have been with us for many years and some only a short time, but you have been so faithful. That means so much to us and honestly overwhelms us. Because of your faithfulness to stand with us, we have seen many wonderful things happen in the work in East Africa. We can only fit so much in one letter so we will give you a few highlights.
We have been involved in many projects in the past few years. Several of them have been major projects in five countries of the Eastern/Sub-Saharan Africa Region. A few of the main ones are the Philip and Gailya List Conference Centre in Nairobi, the IPHC Headquarters and Bible School in Ethiopia, and the Headquarters in Burundi. Along with these are many smaller projects. God has been faithful.
1. The List Conference Centre - Philip worked in Africa for 51 years, and Gailya is retiring this year after 60 years as an IPHC Missionary. We have finished the main building at the centre in Nairobi, Kenya, on a piece of land Philip bought in the 1980s. This centre will host the local IPHC church, serve as the National Offices of the Kenya IPHC national leadership, be a training centre for pastors, and serve as a school for children. It is a two-story building, and the main building is finished. We now want to build a proper school building with classrooms for the kids as the school grows.
2. The IPHC Headquarters & Bible School in Ethiopia – We are about 60% along the way to finishing the Headquarters building in Addis Ababa, and we are about 75% to finishing the Bible school building in Dilla. The Headquarters building in Addis is the largest by far I have ever endeavored. The government required us to build it four stories minimum because our property is located in the capital city.
As I said earlier, these are just a few projects of the many we are working on. We are still putting roofs on churches and helping with other Bible school buildings. If you would like to help us with either of these projects or want information on other building works we are doing, please email me at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Building the Kingdom
What we are even more excited about is that the Kingdom of God is growing in our regions. I haven’t received reports for 2021, but in 2020, even with fighting all the Covid protocols, we added more than 50 new churches in our regions. Additionally, almost all our conferences have reported new conversions, new church members, and new churches.
Along with this, we have had new opportunities to begin to go into a new country in our region and open IPHC work there. Because of the nature of this country, I can’t mention the name publicly, but we trust this will be a new open door for us. On one of our trips into this place, the young minister who is helping me was able to carry some personal Bible players in the language of the targeted people. He was able to pass them out. I have included a picture of a group of ladies. One is an older lady, who, for the first time in her life, is hearing the Words of Life. Romans 10:14 – Faith comes by hearing the Word of God.
Through the help of People to People, the IPHC Covid Relief Fund, and our other supporters, we have also been able to assist our leadership, churches, schools, and orphanages with tens of thousands of dollars, food, and medicine during the Covid pandemic.
Again, we want to thank you for being such a blessing to us and the people we serve in Eastern/Sub-Saharan Africa. Please feel free to contact me if you want more information on any of the projects or outreaches we have mentioned. We hope to return to Africa in Early 2022. It has been great being with our family, and they are all doing so well.
Joshua, Allison, Alice, and Kepler gave us exciting news a few months ago. They are expecting baby number three, who will be born in March. The new baby is a girl, so we will now have three boys and two girls! We know that Alice and Kepler will be wonderful big siblings to her. Jessica and Luke continue to serve at Upward Church (IPHC) in Hendersonville, NC, and Gavin and Jayce are growing. Janene is itinerating for her next missions posting in Wales, United Kingdom. She would appreciate your prayers as she raises up her own support base.
Note From Sharon:
I do not often write in our newsletters but asked Ron if I could please share just a little this time. It has been my joy and honor to serve in Women’s Ministries in Africa all these years beside my wonderful mother, Gailya List. She has been a great source of knowledge, wisdom, and spiritual mentorship in my life and also in the lives of many, many others.
I have always understood that I share “Mum” with many other wonderful men and women that God is ministering to through her. Mom has pushed us all to go deeper in God and to not allow the devil to cause us to back down or give up. Her famous line is, “Well, if an excuse is all you need to not attend church or not serve the Lord, then the devil will sure make sure you have one.” When she would ask us to do something for the Lord like teach a Sunday School class or be a leader in Women’s Ministries, and we tried to say that we couldn't, she would say, “Well, God can, and He wants to do it through you! Just say 'yes' to God and get busy. He will help you!” Mom has sown many seeds for the gospel and Kingdom of God during her time in Africa. These seeds are bearing much fruit and will continue to bear fruit for generations to come.
Thank you, Mom, for all you have taught me. I am truly rich. Rich in an inheritance of perseverance and sacrifice that you and Dad paid to do the will of God in serving the wonderful people of Africa. I speak along with thousands of others that we love you and will miss you beyond words. But you have taught us well, and we will continue to follow the Lord and be available for His service to see souls saved and lives changed for the glory of God. We will continue the vision of “Injili na Mbele!” Forward with the gospel!
I love you, Mom
P.S. We still need you to be busy interceding for us as we “plow on.”
Ron & Sharon