Ireland Visit

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“Can you believe it’s been 12 years since we came to AFM for our orientation week?” we commented to Lorance and Joan Johnson as we sat in their living room in Ireland. “We very nearly didn’t come as Lynette and Stephen were ill with high fevers and hallucinating. It was hard for me as a mother to leave my children when they were so unwell, but I remembered what had happened with your children and how you got on the plane, even when they had high temperatures and were hallucinating. I remembered you telling me that as soon as the plane was airborne, their fevers stopped.”

“That’s true,” responded Lorance and Joan. “My, that does seem a long time ago.”

“I remembered you talking about spiritual warfare and how you felt that Satan was trying to stop you from going to Africa.” We reminisced for a while longer.

Lorance is now the district pastor in two of the regions where AFM has Irish projects. With his prior work as an AFM field director for Africa, he has a good understanding of AFM’s approach to missions, so it is great to be able to continue our partnership in the gospel.

We were in Ireland in connection with the transition of the project in Waterford. Patrick and Bridget Dysert were retiring in the States, and the new Irish Project missionaries, Stephen and Anna Burke, were taking the reins. While there, we met a Texan pastor and his wife who had brought some of their church members to assist the Cork congregation with some health expos at the church and in a nearby shopping mall. The Murphy family, who are serving in County Cork, were also able to assist with the health expo, and Graham took the opportunity to have a checkup and received advice about things he could do to optimize his own health.

Many people were grateful for the opportunity to pause during their shopping to have their health assessed. A large number gave their contact details and expressed interest in attending future seminars. Some were suspicious and wondered why a church would offer such a service. Andy Murphy was able to dialog with these people and help them to understand the reasons behind offering Irish people a chance to improve their health. Please pray for the follow-up to these contacts.

As we speak and visit with all our missionaries, we recognize that there is spiritual warfare taking place everywhere, and we covet your prayers for ourselves and the missionaries we serve. As we reflect on all the experiences we’ve had as field directors during the past decade, we are grateful that we have not allowed Satan to be victorious in the challenges he has brought to us. We are thankful that, because of Jesus, our final victory is assured.

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