I just wanted to share with you this BIG THANK YOU for our October Celebration that we received from Pastor Alcy…
We would like to extent our gratitude to the Marchiano team and all the sponsors that are giving towards the work of God in South Africa.
It is because of your generosity that disadvantaged and orphaned children are fed, clothed, and are also equipped for learning.
Our hearts are deeply touched by your commitment and in the way that you reach out to us.
The teachings that you shared with our South African young people will help guide them into making the right choices in their lives.
Pastor Alcy Tivane
We at ZoeForKids would like to thank Pastor Alcy for all the hospitality shown to us on our visit. We count it an honor to serve these needy children to the glory of God, along side the wonderful saints in Flames Ministries.
Thank you, Pastor Alcy, for allowing us to participate in the great work that God is doing through your missions in South Africa!!!
October 2015! This was my 40th trip to South Africa since my first one, in May 2003.
…but for me the most exciting part was to see the street ministry in Oukasie.
Our VERY FIRST ‘kiddies crusade’ took place in Oukasie in December 2003… and throughout the years, we’ve done lots of street ministry there. BUT, on recent visits, we seldom did any work with the kids there. It has been a prayer of mine to see our team do some real work with the kiddies in Oukasie again!
I was OVERJOYED when our plans came together on this visit to have an after school activity time for the Oukasie kiddies as they walked home. During our activity time… and the message from Pastor Kenny we had more than 700 KIDDIES… all having fun… and hearing the gospel.
Thanks for your prayers!
We praise Jesus for what He did during the week!!!
The whole week was AMAZING as we watched God put together all the pieces to serve Him with our individual gifts and personalities! I love all the people I met, and hugged over a thousand!
I never want to forget the worship and am so grateful to be able to listen to the awesome CD of the South African worship.
They LOVED Allison’s Choice! The small groups of teens and young people, which we had the privilege to lead, was such a blessing… as they yearned to talk about the topic and discuss how to be strong to abstain in the first place.
I loved sharing my testimonies of answered prayers to the women on Sunday morning, and one of my fondest memories was when Sasi said, “Mamamoruti, I didn’t know God really answered prayers until I heard you, so thank you for sharing… because I’m going to start praying more now.”
I loved the pastors, the church families, Lorraine, Maggie, Miemie and John, school children, the shut-ins, the high school students, the park children, the squatters (a Muslim even played my keyboard there).
None of the opportunities we had would be possible if Bruce hadn’t started a ministry there.
The team jelled like we had been best friends all our lives. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!!!!
What a TRIP!!!! I don’t know that I had any expectations of what our mission trip to South Africa would look like, but I was fully confident that the Lord had His plan for each moment, and He did!
He let me see the hearts of so many people. People He loves so much and cares for… in ways I could never care for them. Our trip included a huge variety, from working with multiple age groups to getting accustom to traditions and culture that was different from mine. Pastor Alcy and the Flames Church have a huge heart for people to come to Christ and express that through many ministries, including feeding children. I was blessed by their intentional, genuine love expressed through the multiple ways they served others.
The young adults and teens that saw Alison’s Choice were full of questions and had a hunger to learn more of God’s plan… as well as wanting to be disciple… and involved in our small discussion group. They were very transparent in our discussions.
The children we ministered to were hungry for food and attention. They were very good listeners to God’s Word, as we shared lessons with them.
I guess if I were forced to sum up what I learned of significance on our trip… it would be that we are much more alike than we are different. We ALL have the need to be loved… the desire to have someone pay attention and make us feel important and valuable… and we ALL need our Lord Jesus and the grace He extends to us each and every day.
Finally, our team was FANTASTIC!!! Each member had their gifts and each was a willing servant to help with anything that was needed.
My wife Donna was great with music, working with the children, and speaking to the ladies as well as serving in multiple ways.
Sharon had so much good advice and experience that really helped prepare us daily. Her continued relationship with the people was obviously important to them.
Kurt, he is the most kind and considerate man I’ve met in a long time. He was so encouraging in words and actions… a living picture of Christ. He also has a great ability to interact with the kids, wonderful!
Patrick had a huge heart for capturing the moment through his pictures. He did struggle with illness but made our team so much better by being with us.
Sally, oh Sally… Her heart for this ministry is written all over her very being… so genuine and passionate… never an obstacle that can’t be overcome. She had the trip very organized and structured in a way that we could accomplish so many things. A true blessing!!
So many thoughts… so many possibilities. I thank Bruce for the opportunity to share in a piece of his world of ministry and appreciate his answer to the “call” God laid on his heart for South Africa.
“Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think” Ephesians 3:20
I cannot put into words the mighty work that God has done in our October trip to South Africa!
It is hard to explain or pick out the “best moment of all”… for ALL the moments combined into a week of amazing outreach… each day just as good or better than the day before. We thought we would do something different and let each team member speak for themselves about how they thought our week with our orphans in Majakaneng went… time with Flames church …. and time spent in several villages and schools reaching those in need of some love…
But, first… the rundown..
we had our first outreach with our 260+ orphans from the Majakaneng school… where we have our daily feeding program. All 260+ kids scampered onto the buses and came to the ‘tent church’ of Elandstrand. There… thanks to all of you!!!… they gleefully received backpacks… filled with school supplies and personal cards; handmade dresses… with our love sewn in every stitch… and food… and the Good News of the gospel!
we had an outreach for all of Flames youth and young adults… we showed Bruce’s brand new movie “Alison’s Choice” and then broke into discussion groups. This was topped off with a scrumptious meal and a message by Pastor Kenny. It was an amazing day, filled with active participation by OVER 200 youth!
we were privileged to meet with all of the Flames Churches that gathered at a village church in Mabaloka. There, the messages that each team member gave were INCREDIBLE and so was the reception of the people who heard….
we went and prayed for the shut-in’s! It was an all day event—traveling from one village to another… visiting shut-in’s… hearing their needs and praying with them….
we had our FIRST ever… Ministry in the Park of Oukasie—one of the most crime riddled villages in the area.
We had our Flames youth and pastors with us who went to the streets to gather kids for our outreach… and they came back with OVER 700 CHILDREN!
We had games, music, Bible stories… and a powerful salvation message at the end for all of them!
All children received T-shirts–donated by YOU, our supporters!
It was one of the first times we had done this and our Lord was merciful… the need was great… and there was a great outpouring of love to all. One little one came back to me with a big hug and said, “Thank you for coming to us!” … Oh, how that touched my heart, a jewel of heaven, touched by love…
we went to a high school that has been aggressively attacked by Satanists!
There we shared time and the gospel with the entire school.. Then, we went and had an outreach in a squatter camp where the poor and destitute came and heard the gospel and embraced the outpouring of love….
Our day ended Majakaneng school, spending time with our orphans… we played games… shared Bible stories… sang songs.. .
… a few faces got painted… and kids were giggling all over the school yard!
That’s MY rundown… each team member will be sharing a bit from their own perspective! … So many stories to tell and how God brings individuals together at points of need can be shared, for sure…
Thank YOU… for all the love, prayers and support you have given… Thank YOU for everything you gave and letting us be your ambassadors.
Our kids in the feeding program are doing SOOO WELL! Not one copper-topped head in our bunch! Nutrition needs are being met and we rejoice that we are able to bring that to these destitute children who have nothing! … Thank you for making our ministry possible!!!
Hi Sally and ZoeForKids friends,
It’s such a blessing to see how God uses people to do His work for Him! I used to just drag along and watch how you do things… and just “sponge” everything you do, into my brain, for “one day”!
Having your team in our country [South Africa] is truly from Heaven! We are trying to carry on with the seeds that you plant every time you are here, and we are so blessed to see the fruits!
Last week, Saturday, we gathered a few kiddies and I told them I want to teach them a song. I started singing ‘Do you know my Jesus’, then, a few voices carried on…’Deep deep, down down…’
We saw kiddies with familiar T-shirts that were handed out by the team, and that brought tears to my eyes… In my mind I saw Sharon with hundreds of little kiddies gathered around her feet… listening to her stories… pressing forward to get a kiss… and getting thrown by a ‘sweetie’.
Then there was Sally with the teens… hanging on to every word… listening to her teachings and illustrations of God’s wonderful love… playing all kinds of games… even with the little babies ( I don’t know where she gets the energy from).
Pastor Kenny, when he speaks to the children and adults, they keep quiet and take every word in… such powerful messages…
And then sweet, dear Donna! She has this beautiful ‘heavenly instrument’! Every time she plays, and people hear it… EVERYBODY just starts to smile and sings along…it’s like a magic tool that makes people happy!
Patrick, dear Patrick… always so friendly, running around with his camera. I admire his energy, and then he also gives powerful messages!
Then Kurt… he has so much love inside his heart for the kiddies. I wonder if the guy has a private life, because He just puts EVERYTHING into the kiddies…and when he starts laughing, the whole Brits community starts laughing… it’s just so contagious!
When these people team up and start working together, you can feel the Holy Spirit working through them! They don’t have to say much… everything just falls into His great plan!
I love you guys!!!
Greetings from Patrick!
As most may know, I’m one of “Sister Sally’s” mission team that has the honor and privilege of traveling to South Africa. Our mission is to in some small measure bring hope, love, encouragement and caring to our Flames Christian Family Church, and the precious orphans in the surrounding very poor villages. My task… beside an occasional “preaching,” and loving on the kids as they swarm me, wanting their picture taken… is to document our trips in video and photography. Have you ever smiled so much your face hurts? Well, that’s what the little ones do for me!
John 12:15-17… as Jesus told Peter: “… feed my lambs, care for my sheep – feed my sheep”.
This was Jesus’ commission to Peter… and we today should do the same.
This year’s trip, as you will read from Sally and others… was an AWESOME success. Well, that is… for everyone but yours truly. You see, the second night of our trip, I got violently ill, resulting in my being taken to a local hospital ER three days later. Let it be known – traveling with a MORE than qualified “Nurse” (… won’t mention any names, but her initials are SALLY HERMAN) has its benefits! I was well cared for.
Even though I was very sick and in tremendous abdominal pain, I got unbelievably BLESSED by our Flames Church family! Their love and caring for me… was something to behold. You see, on the night that Sally determined I needed immediate medical care, I entered the hospital ER waiting room, with two people assisting me as I could barely walk… only to see many of my beloved Flames family. They were there to greet me… and to pray for me.
I’m NOT ashamed to say… I broke down and cried, buckets… especially when I noticed my dear young brother in Christ, Tshepo… whom had gone out of his way to come and see me. Sally told me later… I had the whole room crying… including the hospital staff attending to me. Wow!!!
This much love… from people I see only once a year… there just aren’t words to adequately convey how I felt, and the love I have for them. My heart and soul goes out to these people. They not only accept us, they LOVE when we come to serve them… in some small way.
God has blessed me with my Flames Church family… I love them so much!!!
May God bless you and yours!
Ye ‘ol Irishman… Patrick.
Hello Sally and the ZoeForKids Family,
I just want to share some of my thoughts on my trip to South Africa.
It was one of the most amazing trips that I have been on. To see Christ at work in His body of believers in Flames Church is a sight to behold. I was honored to be on such a gifted team and to be doing many different jobs for the local church.
We worked with orphans in giving clothing, school supplies, school backpacks.
We ministered to high school and college age students in sharing the film “Allison’s Choice” and the breaking into groups to share and discuss this amazing movie. That fostered so many comments and questions in these young adults’ minds and hearts. This was a highlight because it got to the core of where a lot of these young people struggle with in their lives and in the lives of family and friends.
It was also a joy to share what Jesus wanted me to share with the men of Flames Church on Sunday. It followed nicely what Pastor Ken had shared earlier to the rest of the congregation. Jesus gets all the glory for what He did through the activities, sharing, prayers, and discussions with the people that He brought into our lives there.
We were well taken care of by the Flames church and their Pastoral staff and the staff at the guest house. It was all due to the fact that there were several hundred others who were praying for us and praying against the evil one, who would have enjoyed us not being able to serve and pray for so many in a short amount of time.
Thank you all for being on our team back on the home front… praying that Jesus Christ would be honored and glorified to so many. It is because of you that we were able to share Christ and Him Crucified to the glory of God.
May Christ richly bless you!
… discussing what would be the best way to bless our orphans this coming fall.
(OK, I will tell them… She says, “Hi!”)
We talked about our ZoeForKids orphans in Majakaneng… how adorable and courageous they are… oh, those smiles and giggles are infectious. Zoelle laughed and laughed…reminding me how much our little ones have grown in the last five years that we have served them… and how new little ones have joined the ranks in the lower grades.
Then it came to us…
…That’s a lot of growing, and a lot of wear and tear under the bridge.
…with the Lord’s leading and YOUR generosity, we want to bless each of our 300 orphans with STUFFED backpacks… chock full with all sorts of back to school goodies. To do that, we would need to collect $20.00 per child. The reason we want to collect funds instead of physical backpacks, like we did in 2011, is to avoid having to explain that the 300 stuffed backpacks are ‘carry on luggage’ and then have to ‘pray them through’ South African customs!!!
So we ask you to please prayerfully consider going to the DONATE page on zoeforkids.com and making a donation to cover one or more backpacks.
If you can’t afford a backpack… donate whatever you can and we will put it toward their essentials like pens and paper.
If you can’t afford to donate… we still covet your prayers!!!
Zoelle and I… and all our orphans appreciate you sooo much and the many blessings that the Lord rains down because of you.
I’m happy to announce, that I WILL BE keeping up the tradition of HAND CARRYING pillowcase dresses to our little girls… and to some of our ‘not so little’ girls!!
A great friend and ZoeForKids supporter, Deyanne Koster, participates in a wonderful sewing ministry through her church, Cedarhome Baptist Church in Stanwood, Washington. The ministry’s name is called ‘Jackie’s Laughter’… it continues the mission of a dear saint named Jackie who went home to be with the Lord in 2012. (https://www.facebook.com/Jackies.laughter12?fref=ts)
WELL… for months and months, Deyanne and her friends have been busily sewing BEAUTIFUL dresses for our little orphan gals. Sooo… at the end of September all those wonderful dresses will be arriving at my door.
Heh, heh… Zoelle just said we were going to have a “DRESSAPALOOZA” in the garage. Oh, how she loves sitting on top of all those neatly stuffed duffle bags!!!
So, please join Zoelle and I in saying a big “THANK YOU” to the wonderful, talented, generous, and loving ladies at Jackie’s Laughter. There are going to be so many wee hearts swollen with joy… going happily back to school in their brand new summer dresses… each stitch made with love. I will take lots of pictures so we can all share the joy.
I plan on taking groups of kids from Majakaneng Village for equine therapy at a nearby equine therapy ranch. The owner is a wonderful Christian sister. Her healing ministry that blesses both children and horses, is so close to my heart… I cannot tell you how excited I am.
Keep our wee ones in your prayers… not only for our October visit, but every day. Our orphans need and appreciate your intercession on their behalf… for all of their daily needs, their blessings, their protection, their love comes from our Father and through YOU. Thank you for all that you do, and for partnering with us!!!!
Back to lazy summer nap time…
Our May 2015 trip to South Africa is in the books!
I can’t tell you what a blessing our trip was!!!! It was amazing…. thanks for the prayers… because with God’s blessing and guidance it was a big success! I can’t thank you enough for praying and loving these kids from afar! May God bless all who devoted time, resources, and prayer to this week of outreach! It really was TRULY amazing…. If I haven’t said it before (haha!)… THANK YOU SOOOOO MUCH!!!!
Because of God and YOU, many people… many different GROUPS of people have been blessed… not only our kids at the Majakaneng School… but the teens, the babies and the ‘gogos’ at Flames Christian Church as well. I want to send a special thanks to all the “surrogate” mom’s and dad’s out there… for without your prayers, labor, and financial support… NONE OF THIS would have been possible. Thank you all… I love you all!!! Thank you for allowing me to be the instrument of the Lord’s blessing , through YOUR generosity and faithfulness… sometimes I feel guilty, because I am the one who gets to see the joy and thankfulness in the eyes of those YOU have blessed… What a privilege to represent you!!!
May is a hard month for me, because it is the month that we said ‘goodbye’ to Pastor Martin. While we thank God for the comforting knowledge that Pastor Martin is yet alive and in the presence of the Lord, for those of us who he left behind… our hearts cry out because of his absence and the feeling that he was called to be with the Lord “too soon”. We don’t understand why he was taken in the prime of his life, BUT, his family and his ministries continue to honor the Lord and Pastor Martin… living out his legacy… working to fulfill his vision for the churches he planted and the children of South Africa who he LOVED!
So, join me as I retell the South African adventures WE (ALL ZoeForKids supporters and team members… and me) had…
Sharon and I arrived safely in South Africa and were greeted by Pastor Alcy (Pastor Martin’s wife)!!!!
What a faithful, energized, and talented woman of God!
ALSO, being a woman of FINE TASTE, she did her hair style today… just like mine!!!
The entire congregation of Flames Christian Church sends their greetings to all ZoeForKids supporters… yes, it would be appropriate to wave back at this point… They love you as much as you love them!!
Over 200 of the Flames Youth teens gathered for an amazing day of teaching and worship. What an amazing group of young people!!!
I presented a teaching about Eleazar and seeking the will of God in your life…
(Link to my notes: THE BEST LOVE STORY EVER)
Eleazar, a ‘type’ of the Holy Spirit, was commissioned by Abraham to go find a bride (Rebekah) and bring her home to his son and her groom, Isaac.
I challenged them to make a contract of God… asked them to give God a ‘blank check’… to give God permission to write the details of their lives from this day forward. Would YOU sign a blank document before you know what the details are? …. Most of us wouldn’t. But would you if you knew the author was God? Do you trust Him enough to surrender the pages of your life and let HIM write the story?
Here is the contract I asked them to sign…
I called them to realize that they could step out in faith, as Eleazar did, and allow God to direct each step… and live a life with eternal importance. We talked about Gideon, and how he asked God to reveal His will by using a ‘fleece’. Do you want God’s Will even before He shows it to you? Do you trust Him enough to turn over every blank page of your life, so HE can fill it?
And step out they did… there was a line out the door
The girls signed…
The boys signed…
… I witnessed their signatures…
YES, the ALL signed!!! They ALL affirmed their commitment to let God have His way in their lives. 200 lives newly committed to seeking out and walking in the will of God!!!
It was answered prayer… would YOU sign it?
My ZoeForKids teammate and colleague from Marchiano Ministries, Sharon Puterbaugh gave a wonderful message on Christian living from Romans 12 that the teens just LOVED.
She impressed upon them that the Body of Christ cannot work effectively and efficiently unless every organ… every appendage… every CELL is alive, awake, and doing its job. Where there is ‘sickness’ or malfunction… the whole Body suffers.
We also had a street outreach in the village of Oukassie. Lots of kids came out to hear the gospel as Sharon fascinated them with her bubbles and sleight of hand presentations.
Many of our talented ZFK supporters not only hand knit and crocheted hats for our orphans… they also made wee ones for the infants and toddlers at Flames Church. Yes, there are orphans in the Church family who are being raised by grannies, aunts and uncles. Also, given the sexual child abuse and the irresponsible nature of young men in their culture, it is not surprising that there are also unwed mothers in the church. Thank you ladies for caring for ‘the least of these’… the babies!!! Warm hats for the babies of Flames!!! Those little gifts were so needed and so loved!
This precious little guy is about 6 months! This is his granny watching over him…
She told me that all her grandchildren were blessed by a ‘sangoma’… the local village witch doctor… except this one….. This little guy was blessed by Pastor Alcy Tivane!!! …that is why he is twice the size of other babies his age!!! LOL!!!
I spoke to the gogo’s about the power of a woman to save a household… it was a teaching on Abigail. Here are my notes: THE POWER OF A WOMAN TO SAVE A HOUSEHOLD The thought of “me” speaking to gogos about powerful women…LOL… they are the embodiment of POWERFUL WOMEN!!!
When we visited in the fall of 2014, we took pictures of each of these dear ladies. On this trip we presented each of them with their personal portrait… They LOVED them!!!
Sharon presented them with rice tote bags made in Cambodia and letters written by her ‘Rosebud’ friends.
SUCH beautiful women of God! SUCH a blessing to the Church and our kids.
The weather in South Africa is beginning to turn cold… winter is fast approaching, officially arriving June 21!!! It gets rather cold in the shacks, down to 30 at times… and in the classrooms!
We visited our ZFK orphans at Majakaneng Primary School to distribute warmth – – coats, hats, gloves… and LOVE. Pastor Alcy joined our visit… and was swamped by loving little ones…
Our ZFK supporters donated enough money to purchase 250 coats IN SA… YES, this time I didn’t have to lug 20 huge duffle bags… AND they match their school uniforms. Do you know, this will be the FIRST COAT some of these children have ever had?
I did however, personally ‘escort’ some of the handmade and/or purchased hats, scarves, and gloves that YOU sent to me for this trip!!! Sharon carried over 200 hats handmade by her sisters in her Church.
Thank you all who have blessed our kids with the gift of winter warmth!!!! Our vulnerable ones have been blessed beyond their dreams!
Here are some photos of our little ‘fashionistas’ modeling … and LOVING…their new winter best:
What is all the commotion?
This is what it is like to read a story to over 100 of our kids all at once!!!!!!
Some of the emotions our orphans have to face is loneliness and abandonment. The book we are reading is The Invisible String. It is a story about two children who run to their mother during a scary storm, she comforts them by telling them about the Invisible String, which connects people who love each other no matter where they are and it means that they are never alone. ZoeForKids wants each of these dear ones to know that they are never alone… Jesus is ALWAYS with them… and there are many people all over the world, especially their ZoeForKids friends… who love them and pray for them.
AND WHAT’S A PARTY WITHOUT GOOD GRUB?
Here are our beautiful and talented cooks in action… having just carried their HUGE caldrons in from the outdoor kitchen!!!!
Fatima is our ZoeForKids head cook who personally makes sure ALL the orphans are fed and makes sure the food is blessed before they eat. She is so faithful. Serving these children is truly her passion.
You see… she, too, was an orphan herself and knows their lives ‘from the inside’… she WILL NOT let anyone on HER watch suffer like she did….
The deputy of the school took control over the excited kiddy chaos and made sure that no one ate until they prayed and gave thanks!
They had TRIED to wait patiently… with various degrees of success…
Thanks to YOU and your prayerful generosity, you funded not only this mini-party, but you have funded the entire ZoeForKids Feeding Program.
This program provides our orphans with two nutritious meals a day, AND provides our most at-risk orphans with much coveted take home ‘dinner’meals, and school break meals!!!
These two little brothers are bringing treasure back to their bare-cupboard shack.
This is the face of ‘success’…. a face of hope and health…awaiting his extra meal before leaving school…. This face is an example of what a little bit more food does for a child. He glows!
No child should EVER have to worry about not getting enough to eat at home… and eliminating this worry from the mind of EVERY CHILD is one of ZFK’s key missions.
This picture says it all!!! After we fed all our at-risk children, this little guy came back to the kitchen to lick out the pans… he didn’t want one drop to escape him…
I don’t have words to describe what this does to my heart… Lord, have mercy on our babies!!!
Thank YOU for the success of our winter outerwear distribution drive… especially those of you who worked your knitting needles and crochet hooks into a frenzy! There are 250 little orphans who will be much warmer this winter… all because of YOU and YOUR LOVE.
Thank you all for the support of our feeding program…
thank you for improving health,
thank you for less empty rumbling in tummies…
it’s all because of your faithful giving and the labor of faithful saints like Fatima.
Someday soon, Jesus is going to come for His own. When that happens we are ALL going to stand in His presence… along with Pastor Martin and ALL our kids… After worshipping Him together, lets plan a HUGE ZoeForKids Hug Fest!!! I can’t wait to personally meet each one of you who have prayed, given and watched over our little ones … who faithfully continue to support the feeding program; covering the costs of the shipments from Tender Mercies and the wages of our African cooks.
YOU and YOUR PRAYERS are so critical to our mission… I depend on you… the kids depend on you … now, we need to work toward building an indoor kitchen.
Would you please pray with us that God would move the hearts of landowners, village officials, contractors, wholesale or retail kitchen suppliers, and donors so that we can bless the orphans of Majakaneng with an enclosed, efficient, sanitary, indoor kitchen???
We have a vision… we need God to make a way, if it is in His Will. Also, pray that we are able to discern His Will, step by step…
… we may have to invest in a ‘fleece’ like Gideon did!!!
Go to our new Kitchen Project Video:
After my big “Congo Adventure”, I’m going to be preparing to visit our wee ones in South Africa in May. YES, I am also going to be meeting with people about planning the kitchen…
BUT… as our kids will soon be entering the winter season… I was ALSO thinking… (boy, are we ALL in trouble!!! HAHA!!)… maybe we should do a fundraiser so that I can locally buy coats for our orphans when I get to SA… (that way I wouldn’t have to hand carry them all!!!)
Pray about it, please!!! I’m figuring it would cost about $10 per coat… what do you think? Is anybody up to this challenge? Do you think we could do this by May?
I could hand carry donated hats, mittens, and scarves, if you find any end of season sales or want to put your knitting needles to good use… but I think collecting the funds for warm coats will be most important. If you are with me on this… go to the DONATE menu option above… AND CLICK IT!!! You will be able to donate any amount though Paypal, or get the information you would need to send a check.
May God bless each of you as we seek to bless these fragile little ones with warm winter coats.
Also… let’s pray their winter is NOTHING LIKE the one we’ve had in the northern hemisphere… I hear our Zoe friends Bev and Betty have spotted polar bears moving onto the glaciers that are still on their lawns!!! HAHA!
THANK YOU for considering participating in this fundraiser. – – Sal
Please redouble your prayers for our little ones in Majakaneng.
Their village is experiencing violence and decreased government assistance causing riots and such… We don’t know all the details yet, but we will let you know when we know more! Thank you in advance for your love, care and prayers of support. Our little ones… these vulnerable sweet children need to be fed and they need to be surrounded by angels to keep them safe from all evil. By your prayers… the prayers of the saints of God, to the King of the Universe… we CAN help feed them and protect them.
Dearest Heavenly Father, send Your angels to surround our children in South Africa… with their swords raised, protect them from the evil that surrounds and threatens them. Send your angels to cover and guide the delivery of the shipments and distribution of food. You are our Rock and our Protector… our strong Fortress. Our faith is in You alone, oh Lord. We commit our ZoeKids to Your personal care. We pray this in the name of Jesus, our Savior and Protector of our souls. AMEN!
You may be thinking…
“Why do you do what you do?”
“Why are your supporters so moved and motivated?”
Please watch this AWESOME video. This is why:
(This wonderful video is from the YouTube post of Eric Ludy of the Ellerslie Mission Society and is called “Depraved Indifference”)
It is still early in the year, so I haven’t collected my thoughts on what we should do for our 2015 collection drives and projects. (Who am I kidding, you all know how busy I have been globe trotting for little ones all over the world and getting my house back to pre-storm working order!!!) But it’s time to get planning (almost) for our Zoe Kids.
Here is what we need to do this year….
1. “SA Winter” Collection Drive (for delivery in May): Do you have any ideas??? Let’s hear them! … some ZFK supporters have told me they are working on scarves and hats.
2. In 2015, we want to kick off our Majakaneng Kitchen Project for the school. Please pray for us as we start planning, financing, and figuring out how we are going to bring this vision into a reality for our kids. I especially need the Holy Spirit to show me how to get started and how to do this well.
3. For our “SA Summer” Collection Drive (for Christmas delivery) we have been blessed with a surprise gift for the girls in the schools in Majakaneng and Maboloka (see more below). We still have to come up with ideas on what to do for the boys.
Let me introduce you to the, soon to be internationally famous and well-loved Cedarhome Seamstresses!!
HERE THEY ARE….
THESE beautiful, talented, and compassionate ladies are from Stanwood WA. They attend the Cedarhome Baptist Church and VOLUNTEERED to craft 300 beautiful dresses for our little ZFK gals… all to be distributed in October!!! I am… all of ZFK is… so blessed by their surprise gift. I didn’t even ask… God is at work through them and is providing for our wee girls in AMAZING ways!!
Just look at those adorable dresses!!! They bring tears to my eyes! There are going to be many grateful little orphans in October… not only from our new school of orphans in Maboloka, who didn’t participate in our last dress drive, but also from those in Majakaneng who have grown out of… or worn out… their old dresses. I can see the broad little smiles and the tears already!
Here is their fabric table… just waiting to be crafted… transformed… into 300 AMAZING summer dresses for our ZFK young ladies. It humbles me to know that they chose to do this out of their own passion for our kids and the leading of the Lord we serve!!! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! I love you all!
Zoe For Kids supporters are the best! You are all so full of the Lord’s compassion for ‘the least of these’… His vulnerable, orphaned children in South Africa.
I promise to get back to you soon with some firm plans for our collections and projects. I love you all sooooo much!
Good day my wonderful sister! I keep missing you day by day! The girls are great and your kids in Majakaneng are well… I visited them in the previous week.
The church is well, and send their love to you! We thank God for you each day!
I saw the pictures on the Zoe website… they’re amazing! I’m not sure if you would like me to print pictures for the gogo’s or maybe you’ll do that when you come to South Africa, you will let me know.
We really thank God for your good work and we highly honor and appreciate you, Sally! I will be taking a few days to rest in the following week… I really need it!
I wish you all the very best this festive season. We continue to pray for your safety and may you have a joyous New Year. Amen!
Pastor Alcy Tivane
My two small nieces asked their mother this question while making name tags to personalize packages of new shoes for a new group of orphans ZoeForKids “adopted” this year. Each of the 163 orphans from Maboloka, South Africa got a new pair of shoes—in their correct size, with a beautiful name tag colored by the little hands of these wee missionaries… While coloring, they offered up big prayers along with their mother, as they gathered around their kitchen table in Illinois. Is this missionary work? You bet!!!!
Every time we allow the love of God to flow through us, and bless someone else… we are doing missionary work. Whether it be at home, in the office, in school or church… shopping or stuck in traffic—we have the opportunity to do missionary work. Whether it be a small prayer or a kind word… giving up our place in line… or patiently listening to a long-winded stranger—we are doing missionary work. The key to allowing the love of God to flow through us IS DENYING SELF… what Paul called the ‘flesh’ (Gal 5:16-25)… in order to build up or bless another person.
Though some would call it ‘sacrifice’… I hate to use that word!!! I really don’t think denying our natural tendencies is a sacrifice to God… NO!… it is our “reasonable service” (Romans 12:1). If you always get back more than you give up, have you really sacrificed at all? Simply put, our eternal reward ALWAYS outweighs our temporal ‘sacrifice’. And isn’t that why we are here? We are not here to build our personal kingdom—but, we are here to prepare the way for Jesus’ Kingdom… THAT is true missionary work.
In October, we took our first ZoeForKids “team trip” to South Africa to minister to our Majakaneng orphans… serve our newest group of orphans in Maboloka… to hold a youth event for the teens of Flames Christian Church… AND, last but not least, to minister to the Gogo’s and that church family.
I have to admit there had been long months of planning, raising funds, and fasting prior to our leaving! I am ashamed to say it, but… I was so nervous about this! If things didn’t go right… it could have been a disaster! I am doubling my shame to say, I worried a lot. Praise God, my worrying was in vain. God had a plan… it wasn’t exactly the same as mine… it was BETTER!! He fulfilled His plan in a far grander way than I could have possibly ever dreamed.
300 of our kids from Majakaneng excitedly gathered in the Flames Christian tent for an all day Christmas event that included… lessons about Jesus, music, dancing, team building games, a huge meal (prepared by the Gogo’s) and the presentation of the Wildlife Bible StoryTellers and cards … FROM YOU, their best friends and supporters!!
The event started on a more somber note than the usual. Just a week earlier, we had lost 3 of our kids in auto crash caused by a drunk driver… making a total of 6 KIDS LOST in less than 3 months time! Our children in this crash had burned to death. At the funeral, before our arrival, the principle told me that our kids refused to.. or, more accurately stated… COULD NOT sing. I know this much… for an African child not to sing… you know they were dealing with some serious heart pain!
I am happy to tell you by day’s end… in our little tent covered by the prayers of the Gogo’s and prayers from all of you, we had our kids back to singing, laughing and dancing with joy radiating from their faces that could have only been placed there by Jesus!! Jesus had started a great healing inside our tent that day… and we were invited to be in the middle of it!
I believe if this was all that we did that week, it would have been more than enough!! But, as hard as it might be to top a day like this… our gracious God did! The next event we had was for the youth of all the churches in each zone of the Flames Christian Family. Each youth was encouraged to bring someone new. We had over 250 youth—50+ new faces!!
The topic of the day was … ALL IN!
Are you ALL IN? And, if you aren’t… what is keeping you from being ALL IN? It was the question of the day!
Message after message from each team member concentrated on being ALL IN! Each topic linked to the … next by no coincidence or chance! We had “planned” to coordinate the messages… BUT, trust me, God worked it out so that it was BEYOND beautiful!
The youth listened, took notes…were given new bibles, THEN came a big pouring out of God’s Spirit!!!!! I stood in awe… by the last message, 30 new youth had raised their hands and surrendered their lives to Jesus. THEY BECAME– ALL IN!
There was joy in heaven as these souls came Home!!!! I can just imagine that the joyful shouts and singing in heaven was so loud that its earthly echo shook loose every binding chain of Satan for miles!
This day ended with worship and sports at the park! …. Not to mention, a huge meal! I didn’t think my smile could get any bigger! I didn’t check it in the mirror but I am sure it was so broad, it could be seen in South Africa and the USA at the same time. I am soooo extremely grateful… I know your prayers had formed this day into being!
Our next event was the Gogo event! On Sunday, we gathered all the churches together. The Gogo’s stayed inside the church of Maboloka and the children, men and boys went outside for some teachings under the trees! The men of our team: Rich, Kurt and Patrick had outdoor services for the men and boys… Sara had the service for the children and Sharon and I had the service for the Gogo’s. It was incredible! I wanted to be in all three places!
The Gogo’s were overjoyed with a service to honor them! They each received a little coin purse—handmade, with a few pieces of treasured SA Rand inside. The lesson was about treasure of heaven—them! They were also given their very own copy of a very special poem written for them by Pastor Brad Hering of River of Life Community Church in the state of Washington! To fully describe the joy, you will have to watch the videos—the Youtube links are at the end of this newsletter! It will SHOW you the joy better than I ever could describe it!!
The day ended with fellowship, a meal and of course, bigger smiles that stretched into the next day!
God had lined up so many blessings—I was feeling guiltier by the minute for ever having a worry! Following God’s lead is so much more exciting when you give Him the worries and through faith… step yourself out of the pilot’s seat. It always turns out best when you switch your prayer from— “Lord, bless our plans”… to… “Lord, show us how to support Your plans!”
The next event was for a new group of orphans in Maboloka who we were introduced to last May. The principal of the school had come and asked for us to help his kids and bless them with shoes. We stepped out in faith, and asked for your support to supply these orphans with “Christmas Shoes” in addition to the funding we needed for the 300 Wildlife Bible Storytellers for Majakaneng… and YOU RESPONDED IN LOVE!!!! We had a shoe needs list by gender and size… and YOU RESPONDED IN LOVE!!!! New shoes in the exact sizes poured in through the summer. THEN the ZoeForKids supporters told us it was important that we share Jesus through the Wildlife Bible Storytellers with the children of Maboloka. So we told you we needed to fund another 163 StoryTellers… and YOU RESPONDED IN LOVE!!!! Have I mentioned how much I love each and every one of you??? I DO!!!!
So we gathered in the Maboloka church. These precious orphans were brought in by bus for an event like we just had with our Majakaneng orphans! As an added surprise, we invited “Yeates”, our guest cheetah, to come for a visit that included a line of pats from the kids… and a few adults… with great trepidation!!! Again, the joy of this event is best described and seen in the YouTube link at the end of this newsletter!
The kids had a full day of activity, they enjoyed a meal… and every pair of shoes with their ‘personalized-in-Illinois’ name tags—FIT! I felt I was watching the hand of God… I came away in the deepest of gratitude. … Never in my history had I ever planned an event where we had the exact amount, the exact sizes and the perfect ‘fit’ for every child. Never.
The last two days we spent at schools in Maboloka and Majakaneng. We participated in the ongoing ZoeForKids sponsored daily feeding program in Majakaneng! We played games in the school yards, prayed at the flag poles, taught in big school assemblies and classes…
However, I received the biggest blessing in Majakaneng!
In some of our kids’ pockets… I saw that they were carrying their Bible StoryTeller audio players! They were eagerly listening to the stories… some out loud… and some with their ear buds! If I EVER had a question about the worth of this big project… the answer was there, right before my eyes! The Word was sprouting in these young, precious hearts!
God answered my question… His Word NEVER returns void—ever!!
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there without watering the earth and making it bear and sprout, and furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; so will My Word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:10-11
To those of you who gave—God multiplied, and CONTINUES to multiply your gift, exponentially! When we gather before His Throne, perhaps then, we will know the true value and impact of the seeds we have planted and watered… seeds of life!!!
During the final days of our trip, we visited the homes of the families who lost children in the car accident, and praying for each one of them. We then visited many home-bound families from the Flames Christian Church. With each home visit, we prayed… and encouraged… and saw God’s healing hand.
I can’t tell you how beautiful it is to just go where He leads!! Life is never boring when you are following His lead. I desire to tell you that I will never worry and stress about ZoeForKids plans ever again… but, being me and fully human, that probably will never happen. However, I do promise you this… after seeing God’s Hand at work in this trip…I will worry, a lot less. (smile)
Is making name tags at a comfortable kitchen table in the USA missionary work? Indeed, it is! Look how far those name tags traveled! Look how far those offered prayers, flew!
What’s in your hand? I believe this is the question He asks each one of us! What is in your hand? We can hang onto it and see what we can do. Or, we can hand it over to Him, and see what God can do… beyond what we could ever hope or dream. That is our choice.
I do have a thought to share with you, though… (of course)
Whatever gifts you are blessed with…
Whatever plan God has placed in your heart…
Whatever God-inspired kind deed or thought…
Whatever resource given for you to use
WHAT YOU DON’T SHARE IS AN OPPORTUNITY LOST FOREVER!!!
What you place into the hands of the living God becomes an eternal keepsake, a memorial to the glory of God….
IF we don’t hold out on God—God will not hold out on us. This trip proved that true in a million ways!!! We want to do amazing things for God, but that isn’t our job… that’s God’s job. Our job is to fully surrender everything that we have and all that we are—to the Lord Jesus Christ. And, if we do our job, God will most definitely do His. I was given a promise and this promise has been fulfilled to a degree I never dreamed possible…
“Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you”
He had done just that.
Thank you for putting yourselves out there—for us. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!! Thank you for placing what was in your hands, your heart and offered in your prayers—into God’s Hands.
He has surely done great things.
My love for each one of you extends to eternity. I love you all so much. Thank you for staying strong for us! We have seen great things!! Enjoy our trip with us by watching the links below!
Love you all and Merry Christmas!
The 1500 students at Majakaneng: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPz9AZBAKhs
Party at Majakaneng: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qcU3OdzZmC4
Party at Maboloka: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48cYOKt3Rcs
Home Visitation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zAX4MpGi_9c&feature=youtu.be
Life Lesson 1- Putting lives in order: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ziVZEzWpAZA
Life Lesson 2- The Oneness of the Family of God: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xohfpjjyIeM
Gogo Tributes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WhGzxTdWTUw
When I went to South Africa this October… I wanted to personally share just how much I have learned in my spiritual life from the examples of mature Christian women!!!
Oh, how I thank our Father for the wisdom I have gained from the lives of these dearest of saints found all over the world… but ESPECIALLY MY DEAR GOGOs IN SOUTH AFRICA! All these mature saints of God are SUCH A BLESSING to me… words can hardly express my gratitude!!! They have taught me the wisdom of seeking out God’s will instead of my own… they have taught me to wait on the Lord for His Best instead of settling for my current longings… they have taught me that God’s true power is manifest when we are in the valley in grief, not on the mountaintop in joy… they have taught me that an effective Christian life is lived always looking upwards and outwards to satisfy the needs of others, and not inward to my own perceived deficiencies and transitory feelings.
Oh, how I love these women… how I love the eternal truths they have shown me… how I thank God every day for bring them AND you, our faithful ZoeForKids supporters, into my life!
Without Him I can do nothing… without you… your wisdom and your prayers… I would not have the supernatural level of strength and encouragement that I NEED to carry on with our work.
Thank You, Father! Thank you, Gogos! Thank you, ZoeForKids supporters! Thank you all for the many and various ways you have blessed my life so together we can bless the hearts of soooo many others!
Join the ZoeForKids Team, featuring Sharon Puterbaugh… once again… as they visit the children of Maboloka.
Watch Sharon demonstrate her prestidigitation skills to teach our kids about God’s ability to heal the divisions among us… and make us into the ONE FAMILY OF GOD!!!
The kids are in awe (I am in awe!) … and the spiritual point made, praise God!
Sharon Puterbaugh is key part of the volunteer staff at Marchiano Ministries. In addition to her innumerable tasks… including fund raising to make the film ‘Alison’s Choice’… she was a vital part of our recent ZoeForKids Team’s October visit to South Africa. Sharon is a former teacher who has been visiting Africa for 11 years, spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Sharon uses various teaching techniques… In this short clip, I think you will smile, as I did, at her “crowd control” technique!!! One… two… three… zip it… simple and IT WORKS!!!
She is known for using slight of hand techniques to intrigue and capture the attention of large crowds of students. While calling what she is doing ‘magic tricks’, she is clear to explain to her audience that this is not the kind of ‘evil magic’ that they see in their culture (which is filled with shamans and spirit worship)… but rather a trick of the eye to make a point.
Join Sharon and the children of Maboloka as they learn and are AMAZED at how God can bring order to their lives…
PS. Their reaction is so precious!!!
Many ZoeForKids supporters KNOW what a wonderful woman Pastor Alcy is… BUT have rarely seen pictures of her.
… Many have heard that she LOVES to sing and worship our Lord… BUT few have heard her.
Our MULTI-TALENTED ZoeForKids Team was able to capture precious moments of Pastor Alcy singing and worshipping with our Gogo’s at their tribute event… actually 30 ‘precious moments’… I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!!!
Sooo, meet Pastor Alcy… the blessed Pastor of Flames Christian Church… as she celebrates the lives of these grandmothers… these dear women who are not only strong pillars in this church but also in the Temple of our God.
How blessed is Flames Christian Church to have so many women and men that are soooo dedicated to our Lord, and sooo dedicated to each other… and the orphans of ZoeForKids?
God is so good!!!
Thank you, Lord for blessing us with this woman of God and her family!!!