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Our Thanks for all your contributions….

On October 27, 2013 at our church 150th anniversary, the mission trip to Bangladesh and India was launched.

Following the announcement, many projects were launched and carried out right until the day that the team left for Bangladesh and India, a total of $9,899.48 were collected.

The first project initiated was the sales of orchids and through the generosity of Peter and Sharon Yeo, a total of $1,280 were raised.  Thanks to Elizabeth, Amanda, Kylie, Donna and LeeLee for the time spent picking and selling. These sales occurred in November 2013 and October 2014.  The Global Mission Team and the trip participants would like to thank Peter and Sharon Yeo for their generous contribution of orchids from their nurseries.

Another project that help us raised funds was due to natural disaster.  One of the oak tree in the church compound fell during a heavy storm and the idea of using that for firewood was thought of.  This raised us a total of $1,531.  Thanks would have to be recorded to Chris and Mike for the idea and the following volunteers like Bradley, Estella, Melanie, Anthony, Tony, Alan, Pricilla, Wendy, Peter, Chris and Mike for their work in cutting the wood into firewood size.  Of course, we have to record a special thanks to Maurice Roos for travelling all the way with his wood splitter to help with the project.

When the restoration work started on 98 and 100 Chester St, there was an opportunity to use the bricks from the two buildings which were dated back to 1890s, and this raised a total of $1,690.  We would like to thank the following volunteers like Bradley & Priscilla Nicholson, Peter Robinson, Anthony Paterson, Andrew Meek, Patricia and Reg, Barbara, Estella, Julie, Joesph, Caitlan, Amanda, Alan, Chris and Mike for taking their time off their Saturday mornings to clean the bricks for sale.  We also like to thank Elizabeth and Wendy for providing refreshments at the morning tea breaks.

We also had contribution from Andrew and Nicola Rowanoski, that in their celebration of Andrew’s 50th birthday, they offered Julie the job of catering, so Julie along with Elizabeth and a few others arranged the food, and the income became a fundraiser for the Bangladesh and India Trip fundraising account.

During the year, we also had contribution of free range eggs for sales donated by Maurice and Osri Roos and this raised a total of $184.70.  Our thanks to the Roos for their contributions.

The GMT and trip participants would also like to thank Mike organising and co-ordinate the Dinner for 6 projects that raised $1,030.  Thank you to those who hosted meals: Estella, Mike, Julie and Chris, Keith and Elizabeth, and for those who went along.

Our thanks also goes to Mike Crudge, who organised the Comedy and Cake night with Peter Majendie that raised $725.71  Thank you Pete for giving us your performing arts skills!  Thanks also to Julie who arranged supper for the night, and her helpers: Elizabeth, Estella, Pricilla and others.

Our highlight for the fundraising must have been the Quiz Night, which Julie Chamberlain had helped to put together that topped our funds by $2,131.99.  Our heartfelt thanks to Julie for bringing this to fruition with the help of the following people like Chris Walker who was the magnificnat Quiz Master from Ilam Baptist.  Our thanks also goes to the many people who have provided prizes for the Quiz Night.

Beside the various projects and events that we have had during the year, there were also many others who have contributed by having other smaller activities such as the jam sale that contributed $21 to the fund raising and the Morning tea Philippa Gordon put on that added $95.40 to our trip funds.

There have also been others, who have not been involved in the various fund raising projects but have chosen to contribute their giving directly to the Bangladesh / India funds via donations and this accounted for $855.30.

We know that in acknowledging the many contributions by the various individuals, we may have missed some people in our acknowledgement and we offer our sincere apologies.

However, above all, we would like to thank our God and Sovereign King, who provided us this opportunity to work together as a church on this fundraising project.  The God that calls our beloved sister, from years ago, Hopestill Pillow to the shores of India to serve in that community, which we now have the privilege to understand a little more about God’s work among these people.

Summary of funds raised

A R’s birthday               $   370.76

Brick Sale                      $1,690.00

Comedy & Cake           $   725.71

Dinner for 6                  $1,030.00

Donations                     $   855.80

Eggs sale                       $   184.70

Firewood sale               $1,531.00

Jam Sale                        $     21.00

Morning Tea                 $     95.40

Orchid Sale                   $1,280.00

Quiz Night                    $2,115.11

Total Amount            $9.899.48

Following the finalisation of the trip accounts, an amount of $1470.48 would be given to two projects equally in India and Bangladesh.

The projects are:-

1.  Purchase of looms in India – $735.24

2. Support of village pastors’ training in Bangladesh – $735.24

Another story from calcata

What do your kids look at on the church walls?

I grew up at Oxford Terrace what did I look at. No pictures of Jesus, no stories on stained glass windows, no childrens SS work, noBible verses.

Instead there was a huge board with those who died in WW1 and 2 and amoung the smaller ones a plaque to a missionary sent from our church 1890, about. Hopestill Pillow went out to India, then one country to the area of Bramanbaria in  the present Bangladesh. She went alone on a long boat trip not expecting to come back for 5 years, She worked with another single woman from Dunedin doing work with women and children in the villages.

She never made it home only to Kolkata where she died in hospital.

We stood by her grave. Would we be willing tto go, no medicine, no rapid escape plan.

A seed falls into the ground and dies but then brings forth much fruit.

What will the fruit be?

Wendy

Terrafirma Kiwistyle

Wendy and I, along with Anthony and Rachel, have arrived back in kiwiland.

The flight went well with no hickups going through immigration & customs. Though sleep was a challenge.

First impressions of kiwiland.

No seething crowds of people pishing and shoving to get anywhere.

The roads are orderly and well mannered.

No vehicles blaring horns trying to force there way through traffic.

Atruck stoppong at the pedestrian cross and waiting for us to cross.

Being able to read the signs without any difficulty.

Kiora mata.

Wendy demanding me to communicate out loud!!!

Fresh, salt sea air on the breeze

No smog or haze to the horizon.

In case you may think that we did not like Bungladesh or India, it is not true. We throughly enjoyed ourselves, and enjoyed the great diffences. It has been an exhilarating experience.

Now we have a small flight to Christchurch – only 1 1/2 hours – then Melanie, the children, the dogs, and our own bed tonight.

I also feel a lightness in my spirit…

Then back to work on Monday, such joys and delights!!!!?

Thank you one and all for praying for us.

Shalom,

Peter & Wendy

Last afternoon in India

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This afternoon we sat on the rooftop of the building The Loyal Workshop is located in (look them up on Facebook).

Sarah & Paul chatted with us about what’s it’s been like for a young family coming to Kolkata 3 years ago, and the vision they have for this new Freedom Business and the transformation it is already having in the lives of some women from the nearby red light district.

Their new and emerging product line is very different to that of Freeset, and their launch date is only a week or two away.

We’ve meet some really inspiring people over these past few weeks. Our NZ Baptist workers in India & Bangladesh are doing amazing stuff.

Day 7 in India

This morning, we visited the Love Calcutta Arts (LCA), a business unit that produces stationery such as journal book, memo pads, greeting cards and even baby blankets.

In the afternoon, we visited one of the new business unit that produces leather bags, wallets and belts.  This is a fairly new business that have got 4 women doing 3 months part time training, 3 months full time training and are now doing full time work at The Loyal Workshop.

With today’s last two businesses visits, we came to the end of the Bangladesh / India trip where we have spent the last two weeks learning more about God and his work among some of His people, who have been exploited and abused.

As we conclude this journey during this advent season, we need to reflect on what God has been showing us for the past couple of weeks.  I am also reminded of the sermon by the Rev Gus Walker of Carey Baptist Church on Sunday, where he reminded us about our responds to the Christ child at Christmas.

Walking the streets of Kolata

Hi friends

Some sìghts we have seen

At the water pumps people washing themselves and their washing

Washing hanging to dry

Men getting a hair xcut or shave

People sleeping wrappeď in a blanket

selling from a street sidè shop or a table on the fooþpath

Shoe cleaners and menders

Families of chiildren sitting cllose on a mat

A row òf motor engines

Fruit stalls

Men chatting

Old womeen begging

Crippled people begging

Making up food in huge wocks

Homes for some huddleď on a mat

Tents

People sweeping

Men standing as guards àt doorways or at gated drivewàys

Anď its always noisy horñs go all the time

For many thier life is spent on the foot path

Another comment, our laundry men said he has a family 700km away he will see àfter working for à year.

Off today to see other bunisses where the outcasts can find work, a decent wage, and bè treated well

We take so much for granteď

Peter has been sick but is much better, i am fine

Wendy

Day 6 in India

The day started with breakfast but we nearly lost Bradley this morning.  It seemed he was in the toilet when we came out of the room and forgot to check if there was anyone left.  In the end, we managed to let him out.

We took 3 taxis to Carey Baptist church but we learned later that Rachel had quite an adventure on the way to church.

We attended service at Carey Baptist church and the pastor preached on the Christmas Story but entitled it as ‘Just 10 Kimometers’.  After service, we had a cup of tea and mingle with the people in the church.  We had a chat with the pastor and learn a little about what the church are doing in the community,

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We returned back to BMS guesthouse for a rest before we head out to the cemetery, which was a short walk from the guesthouse.  Along the way, we had some history lesson from Peter, one of the kiwi who had stayed in the area for a while.

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IMG_6565Click the picture to view a video of Hopestill Pillow’s Eulogy.

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Click the picture to view a video of Peter’s reading from The Baptist

IMAG0444  Click the picture to view a video of Mike’s reading of Hebrews

We returned back to the guesthouse for lunch and a little rest before we headed out to Mother Teresa’s House as they are only opened from 3.00 pm – 6.00 pm in the afternoon.

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There was a soldier..

Some of you may remember this Socttish song from many years ago.

As I was salking down the long foodpath to fins Hopestill’s grave this song came to my mind.

there was a soldier, a Scottish soldier, who wandered far away, and soldiered far away…. but those hillsides are not the hills of home.

sopestill was soldier of reknown in this land.

I was walking through the grave yard I was aware beginning to weep. It was a powerful emotion. Here in the middle of Kolkoto was this quiet place. The noise of the traffic seemed far away. Just the ever present black crows giving out their raucus cries.

Here in this place there a plot of land that will forever be the home of a  courageouss, and intrepid, kiwi lass.

It is a quiet place filled with graves from two centuries ago up until this century. It is a Chrsitian cemetary. You will nò doubt see photos. Some of it is over grown, and the graves are not looked after. We had a kiwi guide with us took to a far  corner of the graveyard, where, nesstled under a  large green tree was Hopestill’s grave. Hidden in the far lefthand courner of the graveyard. Much the worse for ware. But our kiwi guide has arranged for a local to do some maintenance of it. It gladened my heart to hear that.

Mike read from Hebrews 11, and added Hopestills name to the list of saints who looked for a city whose maker and sustainer was God.

Then our kiwi friend told us about her life at OTBC and the work she did here in West Begal. The places we had been to last week, and we witnessed the ongoin work thaf she, and others,  carved out in this land.

I have been deeply touched by this time, and we have video of the time. Some from Simon, and some from myself.

We then took a little time to pray, not for Hopestill, as such, but rather the  next generation who will follow and continue the amazing work that is happening here.

The words from Matt 25 about thd tallents and the feeding, clothing, etc., came to my mind. After the others left I spoke them out, “Well done thou good a d faith servant… enter into the joy of thd Lord”,

It’a hard to imagine we will on a plane leaving here very late tomorrow night. I feel like I could stay here and do “Prayer Walks” and never come to an end.

The needs here seem so great, and the labourers so few – Matt 9:39 on, pray for the Lord of the harvest to send more labourers…

Off course Jesus in John 17 says we are friends now, not servants or slaves…. This changes our approach. We are “fellow-labourers together with God” in the harvesr (some where in Corinthians).

I’ve had a case of the trotts today, but I’m ok, everyone has gone out to tea, whike I’m here doing my blogg.

As I was leaving the graveyard I spied a squirrel on one of the graves. What does that mean???

It will be good to get home and see so many of you. The challenge is then, “What does one say??”.

If we seem to have a farawy look in our eyes it is not to do with you, rather, I suspect we will be thinking of how to convey the spirit of these two lands with words.

Be patient with us, the ‘virus of missions’ is not one you and heal with a pill or potion. Rather only by doing it.

Some years ago I said to the Lord that I do not need to overseas ever again, I had been there, done that, but somehow the “virus” will not go away…. What does one do about Fiji? Let alone Bungladesh and nòw India.

We will see.

The Lord of Glory bless you and keep you…Numbers 6…

Shalom,

Peter &Wendy, or is it, Wendy & Peter