With this newsletter, we hope to bring you up to date about the work of Far Corners Ministry (FCM) since our last newsletter sent out in December.
Latest Trip to India
On February 16th I returned to Northeast India with two pastors who had taught there on a previous mission trip. Our first stop was Gangtok, Sikkim, where we spent one day doing sessions at Victory Christian Fellowship with 40 leaders present. We also had an opportunity to visit with pastor Tseten Lepcha and see the great work he and his wife Shila are doing with the Chinlap Lee Boys Home. Basically, they are providing a loving Christian environment for twenty very needy boys that they have taken into their own home. While in Gangtok, I met with area pastors and leaders, and a committee was formed to help organize a city-wide leadership training conference – probably for early 2011.
As mentioned in our last newsletter, the main purpose of this trip was to bring pastoral and leadership training opportunities to greater numbers of nationals in the rural areas. Shakti, our regional coordinator, had done his usual excellent job of arranging for training sessions in three different villages in the north eastern part of the state of West Bengal. As we spent two days in each location, we were blessed by the eagerness of the nationals, their willingness to learn, and the richness of our fellowship together. In Dubashri we had 120 participants; in Mendabari 112 were registered, but 150 attended; and in Damenpur we shared with 30 leaders. Along with the desire for more pastoral training, many nationals spoke to us about other needs. They mentioned the areas of youth and Sunday school leader training; health topics such as malaria prevention, drug addiction recovery, AIDS, family health; literary and ESL. According to Shakti, one of the biggest needs in this region is reconciliation. We had not been totally aware of this situation, but there were some who were dealing with division and strife. Over the days spent at the training sessions, pastors who were reluctant to fellowship were now talking to each other. It was said to Shakti that FCM had been a healing agent to bring many pastors and churches into fellowship.
Activity Here In Canada
I am continuing to enjoy the combined ministry of pastoral work at First Baptist Church, Hammonds Plains, and overseas work with Far Corners Ministry. Since the beginning of 2010, along with our recent trip to India, I’ve had many other opportunities to speak of FCM. In January, the Missions Committee of Whyte Ridge Baptist Church brought me to Winnipeg, to help form their vision for a mission trip to India. I have spoken at 4 Maritime churches, 1 mission conference, met with another church missions committee, and spoken with approximately 10 pastors about ministry in India. It has been very encouraging to see the amount of interest and support continue to grow.
I am working with members of the Board of Directors, and with Shakti, to finalize our plans for an organized curriculum that will best serve the national pastoral leadership of West Bengal and Sikkim. We also hope to very soon have definite plans for assisting with the expansion and/or construction of small churches in some of those same areas. God seems to be steadily leading in these areas, and we want to proceed in a way that will ensure that we are under His guidance.
I will be leading the next mission trip November 4 – 20, 2010. A team of 13 – 15 will be going from Whyte Ridge Baptist Church in Winnipeg to do a variety of types of ministry. We are also starting to look ahead at February 2011 as a chance to take a team from Atlantic Canada for a variety of purposes. We may be able to schedule this around the Nova Scotia school break which is going to be for two weeks in February due to the Canada Games. This would give an opportunity to those such as school teachers who haven’t been able to participate in the past.
About our website! We apologize for the delays in getting this up and running. Over the coming weeks there will be content posted to farcornersministry.com – so do check it out. Please feel free to get in touch with me if you have any questions, concerns, or want to explore future ministry opportunities. Financially, God has continued to provide through His people. Remember this ministry as we look to the future and strive to accomplish what God calls us to. There are so many needs that we can meet as we have funds to do so. Thank you so much for your ongoing prayer and financial support as we strive to faithfully represent Christ in the “far corners”!
In Christ’s Service,
Rev. Dr. Shant Manuel
Executive Director, Far Corners Ministry
CRA #812210615 RR0001