Join NAZ volunteers of all ages in spreading the good news of the Gospel of Jesus across our nation and the world! To connect with someone about U.S. and World Missions at NAZ, email email@example.com.
The U.S. and World Missions Leadership team encourages congregation members to become engaged in mission work and to support current missionaries at Nazareth. Both long-term and short-term opportunities are available, and prayers are always appreciated! (Please note: Some information and photos have been intentionally withheld to ensure the safety and security of our missionaries.)
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Danny and Nel (and their daughters Emma and Lydia) are working among Muslim people in the Middle East. Danny, a native of Cedar Falls who was confirmed at Nazareth, leads youth soccer camps with a strong emphasis on spirituality and godliness. Nel works to encourage a group of women so they can know God loves them and find joy.
- For praise and thanksgiving for Danny's recent trip to India where he was able to partner with and learn from two Indian brothers, sharing Bible lessons about Kingdom growth and God's plan for the nations. May those who accepted Jesus grow in love, faith, and obedience to Him.
- For praise and glory to God for Danny's teaching placement.
- Please continue to pray and lift up praises to God for Nel as she works in a refugee camp to bring the SHINE program to women residing there. May God continue to work through this program to show that He is their hope.
- Pray for God’s Kingdom to reign in peace in that troubled and war torn region, especially with unrest in many countries in the area.
- Please pray that Danny and Nel and their girls stay healthy, even in the midst of some long and hard work days.
Burton and Vonna Adrian begin their mission service this summer. Vonna recently shared: God always has a plan. For us, it was that we would meet, fall in love, and do his kingdom work together. This started when we met two years ago when both of us were at very low points of our lives, struggling with a sudden death and a painful divorce. Meeting a person of faith was very important to both of us. We feel God did not design us to travel this life alone.
Burton and Vonna spent a year getting to know one another, growing in their faith, figuring out what God wanted for them as individuals and as a couple. Burton traveled alone and spent three months in Indonesia last summer, so God could show him where He wanted them to go. Vonna did church planting training while Burton was gone, which opened her life in an all new way regarding going out in mission.
Burton and Vonna married on June 22, 2019 in front of their families, friends, and their All Nation's family. Shortly thereafter, they will travel to the island of Borneo in Indonesia. Burton has become affiliated with a ministry there. They will spend the month of July as a vision for their future at Living Waters Village, which is a K-12 Christian school in the middle of the jungle.
Last fall, while Vonna was back in the classroom finishing her teaching career, Burton started a course in international medicine. His diploma work will enhance his medical degree emphasizing care in impoverished areas. With his course work completed, Burton will be delivering babies, treating malnutrition and infectious diseases in Ghana, Africa, at the Baptist Medical Centre during September and October for his clinical experience. Vonna will be able to travel with him and volunteer at this clinic.
- that God will continue to bless Vonna and Burton as they begin their married life together.
- for a clear vision about their long-term services as they visit Living Waters Village in Borneo.
- that their time in Ghana is a fruitful time of learning for both Burton's medical career and Vonna's volunteer work at the clinic.
- for safe travels throughout the summer and into the fall.
- for solid team-building to occur between Vonna and Burton and all the people they will be working with in mission.
Andrew and Ardria Medlin (and their sons Judah and Josiah and daughter Joanna) serve with World Impact in St. Louis, MO. They work with the urban poor, including immigrant and refugee communities, often using TUMI (The Urban Ministry Institute) resources to help them engage people in learning about Jesus and the Bible. They are also very involved with prison ministry.
- for God's provision, protection, and blessing for the entire Medlin family. May He grant them strength, wisdom, and joy to follow the Spirit's leading.
- that God would raise up more workers for the harvest field among the urban poor in St. Louis.
- that He would use the TUMI sites to prepare those workers to plant and lead strong, healthy churches in their neighborhoods.
- that their work in the jails and prisons would transform lives for the glory of God and the good of His Kingdom.
- for an end to violence in the city and protection for all who are working to bring Christ's light into the darkness there.
Matt and Christine Stone(and their daughters Lori and Alice) are working among Hindu and Muslim people in India. Matt does business consulting, witnessing to the Gospel whenever possible, and Christine engages local women in Bible reading. They are all in the process of language learning and relationship building.
- for peaceful rest in the midst of bad dreams and anxiety that continues off and on to be a struggle for Matt and Christine and the girls.
- with thanksgiving for the mutual blessing to be reading the Bible with a friend. Please pray for protection and Him to speak as we seek Him together.
- with continued praises for several of their friends who have found salvation in Christ Jesus. Pray these new believers would grow in faith and have the courage to share the Good News with family and friends. Pray for God's protection over them.
- for peace and courage for a friend, P, who wants to share what He has done for her with family and friends, but is also not sleeping well and is feeling some fear.
Steve and Bethany Friberg and their family are serving in Tanzania. Steve is a doctor and coordinator for medical clinics (as part of the Health Department of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania) that serve nomadic Maasai people in remote areas. Bethany works with Naapok women who have a small business of creating beadwork to provide a means of supporting themselves and their families.
- Colossians 1:9-14 for the Friberg family and their colleagues.
- for Yohana, a young Maasai evangelis from a remote area, who will be leaving his wife and infant child to begin theological training.
- for the Naapok bead project leaders as they learn and share responsibilities.
- for Steve in his last month in the USA and for Bethany in Ketumbeine.
- for the 12 new physician's assistants who are adjusting to their clinic work.
Jim and Marissa Stamberg are cultivating future church leaders in Alaska, utilizing Jim's training as a missionary pilot and flight instructor.
- that God will raise up an army of Northern Disciple-Makers!
- that God will unite people in deep and profound ways for the mission He has called them to as they participate in Northern Missionary Training in Soldotna, Alaska.
- for the safety of all those who will be traveling hundreds of miles over extremely rugged terrain in the days ahead.
- for the teens participating in the SEND North Teen Retreat.
Josh and Melanie Dilly are directors of Caribbean partnerships with Storyline Missions. The goal of Storyline is to accelerate missions sending from areas of the world that have been reached to the most unreached areas: those in the 10/40 window. The Dillys have five biological children and added two little girls last year through adoption. The Dillys are working with organizations, denominations, and leaders in Haiti, Trinidad & Tobago, Cuba, Antigua & Barbuda, Grenada, Puerto Rico, Guyana, Guadeloupe, and Diaspora churches in New York to strengthen sending from the local church. This summer their family of nine will be spending a month in Cuba developing partnerships. Cuban churches are looking at strategic ways to send a team to North Africa.
- that God would continue to use their work to reach those they serve.
- that God would continue to help each member of their family grow closer to Him and closer together.
Shannon and Lisa Sandquist are serving in Christ's name in Colorado Springs, where they lead the Global Student Program for the Navigators by training young leaders from around the country in ministry and encouraging them to deepen their walk with God and grow in Bible studies. Shannon now serves as the Director of International Mobilization, a pivotal position in sending missionaries to the nations. Part of their ministry is to develop over 40 summer long and short term mission trips that send Navigator students all over the world.
- With thanksgiving for the birth of their grandchild, Isaac.
- For wisdom and discernment as Shannon considers a new Navigators director position.
- That God will meet all the financial needs of their ministry through continued and new ministry partnerships.
- For them and their team as they transition into this new ministry role in Colorado Springs.
- Their work will be fruitful in spreading God’s Word to many.
- They continue to be blessed with financial gifts and supporters so that they can concentrate on the work of serving.
Paul and Jay Mikaelsen are serving with World Mission Prayer League in Caranavi , Bolivia, where they work with Christian broadcasting Radio/Television Caranavi (RTC) to bring the good news of the Gospel to people there.
- for Paul and Jay's safety as they travel.
- for RTC as new equipment is purchased and repairs on old equipment are made.
- for the people of Bolivia as the new president tries to restore peace and unity.
- for upcoming elections in Bolivia.
Matt and Cara returned recently from the Middle East and now live in the eastern United Stated where Matt is a PhD. student, while Cara does mobilization work and works with the local Middle Eastern community.
- that God will change the hearts of those who are resistant to His Word.
- that the local church will continue to be a strong partner with them.
- that their trip to Florida will be fruitful as Cara interviews new candidates who hope to join Pioneers and head out into the world; that the boys will enjoy the kids’ program learning about the nations; and they will have a fun family time together on the Pioneers campus.
- for Cara and the boys as they stay home while Matt goes to the UK for the month of May
- for increased opportunities to meet and relate to international students, especially for a new student from Mauritania who is very lonely
Mark and Maki Wolter have been serving in Japan, where less than 1% of the population knows Christ. They lead Bible studies and do evangelism in their neighborhood.
- for their preaching, teaching, Bible study, and home ministry initiatives.
- for the students they teach and their parents.
- for their neighbors and friends who are still seeking to trust their lives fully to God.
- for people in the communities they serve to stand up and lead for the cause of Christ.
- for direction in regards to how best to invest their time for God's glory.
Matt and Jen Reisetter live in Cedar Falls, where Matt serves as the U.S. Director of The Life Project and The Digital Doorway, global ministry initiatives of Power to Change, which is Canada's arm of Campus Crusade for Christ International
- Matt is working with a Liberian pastor who lives in Waterloo to create a partnership that would result in online mentors in Liberia. Pray that this focus would bear fruit and be a blessing for the Liberian people, both believers and non-believers.
- Facebook sites have been shut down that have been sharing about The Life Project. Please pray that this issue would be resolved and result in even better outcomes than hoped for.
- The Life Project is pursuing partnerships all over the world with the hope that they would translate into spiritually fruitful conversations where people around the world who do not know Jesus Christ would come to know Him, and people who know Him would develop new and stronger relationships with Him – that all would Grow in Christ!
- Pray for more mentors for The Life Project – the goal is 5,000 mentors by 2020, reaching and impacting one million people.
- Regarding fundraising – the goal is to raise $150,000 this year for the Bible Conference. Also, for the Life Project, the fundraising goal is $120,000. Matt knows he has been gifted to help in this area, but he doesn’t always feel comfortable about it. Please pray that the fundraising would go well without too much stress.
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Dr. Neil Williams from Nazareth brought Nazareth’s first medical team to Jamaica in 1990. He wanted to start a tradition of Nazareth members and others personally participating in overseas mission projects. 2017 marks our 28th year of ministering to people in the interior portions of this island nation and our medical mission is called “Hope and Health to Jamaica” or H2Jamaica.
We had 52 participants from Alaska to Massachusetts and everywhere in between with 29 from the Cedar Valley and 13 from Nazareth. Our mission typically occurs the first two weeks in February, this year from February 4 to 16. Over 8 clinic days our three medical teams and two dental teams saw 1,583 individuals. Our construction team installed 17 one-quarter acre irrigation systems for subsistence farmers and built safety rails around a gazebo we constructed last year at “Gift of Hope”, a Roman Catholic residential facility for severely challenged children.
The various teams have many stories to share from our 2017 trip, but one that stands out occurred after our group installed an irrigation system for a lady named Rachel. After each installation, one of our group asks the recipient if we can pray over their field. Hank Wellnitz from Nazareth asked Rachel if she could start out and he would finish the prayer. Rachel started praying the most beautiful prayer, thanking God for the wonder of his creation, the glory of his salvation and various other items of praise. We were all captivated by the Spirit’s presence in her prayer and when she finished after 2 or 3 minutes, Hank simply said, “What can you say after that but “Amen!” We all joined in with a heartfelt “Amen!”
This trip is due, in part, to a large effort by Barb and Bob Ericson. If you're interested in participating in this outreach, contact Barb at (319)493-5039 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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$48,593 was raised in 2013 for a special Medical Mission Project to Tanzania. Praise God for the generosity of so many people! A 40-foot container with an x-ray machine and medical supplies was shipped to Dr. Steve and Bethany Freiberg for use in their clinic.
Project include shipping and installing an x-ray machine, providing medical supplies, helping complete construction of a Tanzania church, renovating nurses’ housing, and providing training for evangelists.
In June 2014, members of Nazareth traveled to Tanzania to assist with the completion of these projects.
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When you purchase a bag of Lutheran World Relief fair-trade coffee, you're doing much more than just buying a delicious beverage. You're contributing to world justice. The Lutheran World Relief Coffee Project ensures that coffee farmers receive a fair price that covers their cost of production and guarantees them a living wage for their labor. To purchase fair-trade coffee, stop by the Coffee Shop in the Family Life Center or the Information Desk in Fellowship Hall on Sunday mornings or visit the church office during the week. Coffee is $7 per bag and tea is $3 per bag.
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The Kits & Quilts team gladly accepts your fabric donations throughout the year. Thread is also welcomed! Throughout the year, the team works together to create a multitude of quilts which will be of comfort to people in need all around the world.
In addition to making quilts, this team also puts together personal care kits, baby care kits and school kits on a regular basis.
All of the Kits and Quilts are distributed worldwide via Lutheran World Relief.
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We serve at two deaf schools in Jamaica over spring break in Kingston and Knockpatrick in partnership with CCCD (Caribbean Christian Centre for the Deaf) and DeafCan Coffee. This trip focuses on Relationships: Relationship with God, Relationships with each other and Relationships with the community.
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In an effort to preserve the dignity of the Maasai women of Tanzania; and to open their lives for emotional, physical and spiritual redemption, Nazareth facilitates the sale of their beautifully hand-crafted, beaded jewelry.
As a result of a partnership with Ketumbeine Lutheran Church in Tanzania, the Naapok Bead Project has given these women the opportunity to make and sell their amazing beadwork, an art form their people have long valued, in order to empower them to alleviate their struggles with extreme poverty and neglect.
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In June 2016 and June 2017, Nazareth was blessed to receive a visit from Jackson Kaguri, the Founder and Executive Director of the Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project. The mission of the project is to work on behalf of HIV/AIDS orphans in rural Uganda to end systemic deprivation, poverty, and hunger through a holistic approach to community development, education, and healthcare. Mr. Kaguri shared his powerful story with congregation members and with all of the children in attendance at VBS.
A viewing of the award-winning documentary film about His life, "Cornerstone", will be shown in Bethel Hall on Saturday, June 17, at 7:00 p.m. This viewing is open to the public. Mr. Kaguri will also speak at both worship services on Sunday, June 18. For more information about Nyaka, go to www.nyakaschool.org.
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Here are some exciting updates about how God has been at work through this ministry:
¨ In 2018, StARS helped over 30,000 people and their families access healthy food, education, mental health services and professional development tools.
¨ 650-750 children a day receive breakfast and lunch through The Children’s Feeding program.
¨ In 2019, StARS education program supports over 4,000 teachers and learners through its Children’s Education program, Preschools, Adult Education program, Education Access and Capacity Building program and Early Childhood Wellbeing program.
¨ 90% of students in the Children’s Education program passed their internal exams.
¨ StARS employs over 280 professionals and experts who provide support ranging from individual medical consultations to language classes to organizational capacity building to cross-sectoral emergency interventions.
¨ 208 volunteers also work part-time and full-time to support the activities of the program, most notably making up the bulk of StARS’ legal teams and providing a range of individual and group support to adult learners in the Adult Education and Education Access and Capacity Building programs.
¨ Given restrictions to services for refugees and ongoing inflation, an increasing number of people approach StARS each day with emergencies.
¨ Throughout the year, an emergency fund supports 428 people, 62 percent of whom were women, in accessing their basic needs through life changing interventions, impacting 631 of their family members.
Learn more about StARS and how you can help at http://stars-egypt.org/.
StARS Update - June 2020
In May, Saint Andrew’s Refugee Services (StARS) surveyed 51 refugee community schools, which collectively educate over 15,000 children from displaced communities. Of those school leaders surveyed, 94 percent report that they have been unable to pay teacher salaries in full since March, and 82 percent report that they are unable to meet their rental costs. Many expressed concerns that they will be unable to weather the economic shock of COVID-19, and may not be able to re-open when restrictions are eased. Refugee community schools play an important role in educating children from displaced populations. At present, refugees from Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Iraq, and other countries (approximately 20 percent of the refugee population) are not entitled to access Egyptian public education. Additionally, many children of nationalities with a right to enter the state education system (Syrians, Sudanese, South Sudanese, and Yemenis) do not attend for reasons including a preference for their own national curricula, documentation barriers to enrolment in public schools, and xenophobia and harassment in the Egyptian system. Until such time as all refugee children have meaningful and safe access to state schools, material support is needed for community schools educating refugee children. We thank Nazareth for their commitment to contribute $75,000.00 to assist with the programs that help many of these students! The implications of Covid-19 are far-reaching, and we are thankful for investment in community schools to ensure that schools can continue to operate beyond the current pandemic. See the full reports here:
Following social distancing requirements while serving refugees.
Women receiving GAP Education packages.
Listen to the StARS Prayer Service from June 19, 2020, here.
Find the English transcript of the service here: