Taiwan Times – April 2011

The Taiwan Times
By Mark Wolfram
Reporting on God’s mission in Taiwan
April 2011

5 In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee
Luke 24:5-6

Easter at Salvation Lutheran Church

Happy Easter everyone!  What a wonderful day to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord, showing his triumph over death, sin, and the devil.  As Christians all over the world recall this event, we can all reflect on the forgiveness, new life, and hope given to us through the sacrifice and victory of our Lord Jesus.
At Salvation Lutheran Church, I was especially excited to see many children in worship.  Most of these came from the Saturday Kids’ Camp that is held every Saturday afternoon.  Some of their parents came as well, and many of these parents and children are not Christian.  However, praise God that they came for our Easter activities.  Salvation Church asked the kids to come and sing a song during the service and then participate in an Easter egg hunt after the service.  During the sermon, Pastor showed a cartoon that reviewed Jesus’ birth, life, death, and resurrection, allowing the children to get a full message about who Jesus was and why he came.  Praise God for these visitors, and pray that they would continue to seek to learn more about the living Lord.
Youth Camp

In the end of February the China Evangelical Lutheran Church (CELC) partnered with LCMS World Mission and the American missionaries to hold weekend youth retreat.  The theme of the Youth Camp was “Saved By Grace”, examining how our salvation is a gift from God, not because of our works.  During the Youth Camp, the campers played games, had worship, Bible study, and got to meet some new friends from other parts of Taiwan.
The retreat started on Sunday afternoon February 27, and lasted until lunch the next day.  117 people participated, from 8 Lutheran Churches here in Taiwan.  69 of the attendees were youth from 5th grade through college.
It was a wonderful experience to bring the youth and churches together.  I praise God for how he worked through all of the preparations and activities.  I was especially thankful for the chance to work with and get to know other pastors here in Taiwan.  I pray for God to continue to bless the CELC and the Lutheran Churches throughout the island.
China Service Trip

During the second weekend of April, the Lord blessed me with the opportunity to travel to a village near Kun Ming, China.  For the service trip, I worked with 4 other Taiwan American teachers and a welfare and education agency in China to gather information from the village.  This information will be used to create reports that can help give updates to financial supporters and to guide future projects that may be done in the village.
The focus of my group’s questions was to get feedback on how the villagers were using a previously installed water system, and to get information on their overall health and hygiene.  My primary role was to be an observer of the interviews and to write down notes concerning the people, their homes, and general conditions of the villages.
Most of these people lacked education past an elementary level, and did not understand basic health habits, such as brushing their teeth.  I remember in one of the interviews the lady was asked when she brushed her teeth, and she replied that she did it only when they hurt.
Earlier today, our group met to share final analysis and help each other finish creating the reports.  We will send it back to the organization later this week.
Due to the nature of the trip, we were not able use the trip to evangelize.  However, praise God that the village we went to was Christian.  You could see the love of the Lord in the people’s smiles and the joy they had as they willingly interacted with us and welcomed us into their homes.  Pray for God to help the agency meet the needs of the people, and for these people to share their faith with those who don’t know Christ’s love.
Fundraising and New Teachers

Again, I want to offer praise to God that I am fully funded for another year of service in Taiwan.  I’ll be in Iowa from the last week of June until the last week of July, and if you would be interested in having me come and share about mission work in Taiwan, please contact me.
Second, we are in huge need of new elementary teachers in Taiwan next year.  Currently we only have 2 to teach next year.  We need 2 more teachers to meet our bare minimum staffing needs, and we need up to 6 more to be fully staffed.  Please pray for God to lead more people to Taiwan and if you know of anyone please contact me, and I would be happy to be in communication with anyone who might be interested in serving here next year.
Prayer Time!
  1. Please pray for all of the children, parents, and people who were in church for Easter Sunday.  May God the Holy Spirit work to create faith in them.
  2. Pray for the CELC churches and youth.  May God bless the relationships between churches and help the youth to stay connected to the word of God.
  3. Pray for the people at the village I went to in China.  May God provided them with supplies and education to improve their lives.  Praise God for their faith and may he present opportunities for them to share it with others.
  4. Pray for God to provide more teachers to come and serve in Taiwan.