Summer is probably our best ministry time here in Northern Ontario. We have much better weather, and people are out and about more than in the colder winter months! God has been truly blessing our efforts this summer. We are thankful for the work He has done!
On July 5th, Kendall was ordained to the gospel ministry. Pastors Leroy Pennell, Archie Norman, Ernest Bauserman, and Earl Jessup were all a part of the ordination council. For several hours Kendall answered questions, and then at 3pm we had a service with our congregation. With 31 people in attendance, our little church building was FULL! Pastor Pennell gave the charge to the congregation and Pastor Norman gave the charge to Kendall. Afterward, we enjoyed a meal and time of fellowship at our home. We are so thankful for everyone that supported us and had a part in the ordination. It was a blessing to know that so many people are praying for us in the ministry here.
Summer Bible Camp
We held a Summer Bible Camp in July in the town of Markstay, about a 1 hour drive from North Bay. One of our families lives in this town and faithfully drives to the services in North Bay every week. As an outreach we held a Summer Bible Camp there, and we had 14 children in attendance! We are so thankful to the Lord to have been able to reach these families. Markstay is a very small town of about 500 people, and it is primarily a Catholic. There's a small Pentecostal church there as well. Most of the families that attended our Camp were of Catholic background. On the last day of Camp we had an awards ceremony. ALL the parents attended, and we had the opportunity to share the Gospel with them during the ceremony and then speak to them individually after! There is a great need in Markstay to reach these families. North Bay is the closest Independent Baptist Church! We are praying for more opportunities in this area, and for more labourers to help us get the Gospel to these people!
Kendall's father, brother-in-law, niece, and sister were all able to come up to North Bay for his ordination. It was a great blessing for them to spend some time with us, and be able to see the work up here. We are so thankful they made the LONG drive from Tennessee to be here!
We continue with the discipleship of three new converts in our congregation. Please pray for these men as we teach them the Scripture. It is so exciting to see them grow in their faith. They have a desire to learn and have already expressed interest in helping in whatever way they can at the church. Several of them have been involved in door to door visiting and other church ministries.
We continue to see visitors on a regular basis. This is a great blessing and it is the Lord's doing! Our church is not in a very visible area, and on top of that, google maps and GPS do not recognize the street we are on! It's truly the Lord bringing these people to our church. We have found our website is a consistent tool in bringing visitors. Often when I ask visitors how they found out about the church, they mention the website. We thank God for providing us with a good website.
We have passed out literally thousands of pieces of literature since Kendall became pastor here! Please pray that God uses these tracts in the lives of people in North Bay. We continue to be faithful witnessing on the streets, going door to door, and inviting people to church. We have also found that personal contact is one of the best ways to bring visitors to church. Many people may get a gospel tract in the mail, but they are more likely to remember and to attend if someone personally hands them an tract and invites them to the service.
One of our great needs as a church is a permanent building or meeting place. Our current lease runs out in December, and we would love to move into something more permanent and stable at that time. However, we need the Lord to open a door to make this possible. Please pray for wisdom, direction, and guidance for Kendall and the men of the church in finding a new meeting place. We want to be sure we are following the Lord's leading in this! Our heart's desire is for a church building, but that is almost an impossibility in this town! However, we know we serve a God of the impossible, and we are simply praying that He does what only He can do!
Thank you to each one praying for us here! God is working in a great way!
Kendall and Jessica