Dates:  October 2-15

We have the privilege of again returning to India which is home to Grace Global Partners Timothy and Julie.  This team will serve with them at a children’s home, which cares for over 20 children whose families are unable to care for them. Ministry will include a VBS program, leading devotions, helping with homework, mentoring, teaching songs and playing games with the children.

Updated Wednesday, October 15 (1 of 2)
E-mail from Dave

Here are some personal insights from our team members.  

Kate says: "I am having so much fun here at the Bangalore Living Word Children Home. I enjoy all the kids but got to ride the bus to the river with Kajal. (She was the one that was sick in the hospital last summer.)  Kajal is so sweet. Last year she gave me a flower and I pressed it in my journal – I still have it. We had such a fun time on the bus talking and playing. She is also in my VBS group."   

Gerry says of Mukesh: "He is my mighty dynamo. He is always going 100 miles an hour! He wants to be involved in everything that is going on and has a smile on his face.  While we visited the new land we had to repair the fence where the elephant had walked through. Some of the boys were carrying rocks to reinforce the side of the hill that had eroded away with the rain. It was Mukesh who was carrying big stones about half his size. We told the other boy to clear out of the way so Mukesh would not drop the stone on them.  Mukesh is so eager to learn and help. If you say, “Mukesh, would you …” before your finish he is off running before he know what your want! I consider him my busy beaver, my strong ant. He is a great kid."

Elyse has this to say about Mukesh: "Mukesh is a typical boy and I am learning that little kids everywhere all over the world are the same. He is in my group – the youngest group. He seemed reserved at first but once we started he opened up and liked talking, especially about Jesus. He can be funny and silly but has a sweet spirit and loves being here at the home."  

Dave says: "I have the 3 oldest boys. All 7th grade. We are doing the VBS but also working on principles of being a godly man. Rai is tall and slender but the strongest of them. He has a quiet but sweet spirit. He is very responsible and a great help to Timothy. Hoho is broader in the shoulders but just as quiet and reserved as Rai. He is Timothy’s second right arm. He is a hard worker and very responsible. Both Rai and Hoho do a lot of the group cooking on an open campfire every day. The main thing they will make is a big pot of rice everyday. My third guy is named Lunguandui.  It is hard to spell and pronounce so he changed it to Aduan (add –won). Aduan is also quiet but even more so.  I talked to him about trusting the Lord, and he said one night after Timothy had spoken he went home and asked HIM into his heart and life. I had the privilege of bapti*ing all three of the boys. They are very excited to live for the Lord."    

Sheri shares about Glory: "She is in my group for VBS and has really captured my heart. I see how God has brought her out of great hardship and given her great joy, hope and peace… a true transformation from ashes to beauty." 

Updated Wednesday, October 15 (2 of 2)
E-mail from Dave
Today is our last day but a busy one. Here are some of the things we will do before we leave for Bangalore Airport at 6:30 pm our time tonight.

We started with the kids changing their clothes to more Indian nice clothes. Our ladies put on some of their beautiful dresses and Gerry and I borrowed some things from Timothy. We took a group picture of the kids and each of the team members as well as Timothy and the family.

Elyse had worked out a game of Jeopardy based on our VBS study and the kids had a great time seeing who could answer the most questions. Later we had lunch and afterward we handed out special thank you bags full of all types of goodies and toys. That has kept them busy a several hours. Later we will do some face painting and Dave will teach them how to put on a sling for an injured arm.  

The team will take a couple of hours to pack and get ready and try to leave for the airport around 6:30 pm. Our plane takes off at 11 pm and we have a 5 hour trip to Singapore. We have a 3 hour layover and 6 hour trip to Tokyo, Japan. We get off the plane with all our stuff, go through customs them get back on the same plane for out 11 hour trip to LAX.  

Please pray for safety for our long journey home. Our hearts are full, yet sad that we have to leave. It has been a very productive trip in building relationships with the kids as well as Timothy and Julie.  

Thank you so very much for being our support team and helping make it possible for us to come half way around the world to help Timothy and Julie and all these precious children.   

God Bless, 

 Dave, Gerry, Stephanie, Sheri, Kate and Elyse  

PS. Please join us for the GO Team Celebration on Sunday Oct 26th at 12:15 in the F Modular to hear more about our time in India

Updated Monday, October 13

E-mail from Dave

It has been a wonderful, but busy 3 days for our team. Last Friday was our river day with the children. We left out by 8 am for our two hour trip to the river. It had been raining the last two days so the river was up a little and had a lot of silt in it. We use some little round boats to go to the other side of the river where there was more of a beach area. We set up camp and ate the lunch of rice and curry that we had brought with us. Dave shared a devotion from Phil 1: 29. We had 13 children that wish to be bapti*es. Six had shared their testimony the night before so then the rest of the kids gave their testimony. Then Timothy, Gerry and Dave went out in the water with the 13 children where we took turns bapti*ing them. It was am awesome event. We stood in a semi circle and held our hands together and high in the air to the glory of God. 

Afterward it was a time to play in the water and see who could splash Uncle Dave the most. What they did not know was uncle was an experienced splasher! We had a great day and time together.  We got home late and went right to bed. 

With the other schedule changes Timothy decided to use Saturday to take the team to the city of Mysore to see the ancient palace. It was a 3 hour thrill ride south about 80 or 90 miles through Indian traffic. If you every have played any of the video car race games with weaving in and out and sudden stops for seed bumps (1 or up to 5) you might have a little idea of what our real life Indian ride was like. After the palace we almost had the opportunity to ride and elephant or a camel. But a storm came up quickly and poured rain for about 30-40 minutes. We took shelter at the front of a closed shop that had a small over hang. Afterwards we did a little of street shopping before our 3 hour return trip getting home just before midnight.  

Sunday morning we were able to sleep in a little bit because church was at 10 am. We forgot that there was another Hindu festival going on during the night and the Hindu temple next to the property started blaring music at 6 am to all the neighbors around through their loud speakers. All part of a real exciting Indian experience.

Uncle Dave spoke Sunday morning on lessons from Philippians. After lunch Sheri showed the kids how to draw. Later Sheri, Elyse and Kate went with Timothy and Julie to the store so they could cook us a wonderful spaghetti dinner. Uncle Gerry spoke on the “Be Attitudes” then the ladies made everyone root beer floats. 

It has been a great 3 days for building and strengthening relationship. As well as encouraging one another. 

Soon we hope to send some more in depth insight on how God is using us in the lives of the children. Thanks for being such a special and important part of out team.

Updated Saturday, October 11
The India team sent a 2-part video to give us a taste of their ministry among the children.  Enjoy the smiles and good spirit you will see through the two links below:

Click Here for the first one

Click Here for the second one

Updated Wednesday, October 8
E-mail from Dave
We had not planned on sending a letter tonight, Wednesday October 8th.  This part of India has been in a drought and we have been praying that God will allow it to rain more so the crops on the land will grow. God is answering our prayer and the weather man says it is going to rain 3” in the next 24 hours. So we are putting off our trip to the river at least one day to Friday or maybe even Saturday. Please continue to pray for this trip and activities.  

Tonight we heard 6 of the children share how they came to know the Lord. There were some touching stories of God’s grace and love. Not all the children are ready to take the step of obedience of baptism but many are and we are thrilled to be part of all of this.  

Sheri writes,  "We have been having a great time with the children and love that God has given us this opportunity to return a second time.  Seeing how they have grown over the past year has been such an encouragement.  Just spending time together in our small groups has been so much fun… getting to know them, listening to their testimonies and sharing funny stories.  What a gift to see how God has showered his love on them and given them hope and peace.  Thank you for praying for them and our time together.  God is working in all of our hearts and we are so grateful."      

Again thanks for making it possible for us to serve here in Bangalore.

Updated Tuesday, October 7
E-mail from Dave
Today was our second day of VBS and we had another great day. We are teaching on Moses and his helping God’s people get out of Egypt. Elyse taught on Monday and Dave taught the lesson today. Afterwards we had our small groups. In the afternoon on Monday Dave and Gerry taught on First Aid and showed the kids how to stop small bleeding and put on a band aid and how to stop a larger bleeding wound and bandage it.  Today Elyse gave the kids some tips on how to take care of their dog using Rosie their gentle German Shepherd as guinea pig. We are having a great time with the kid and growing closer to them every day.  

Some of us have been challenged with jet lag but we all are doing well and are healthy. There is a Hindu temple right next to the complex where we are staying and every morning at 6 am they blast their prayers and chants to the surrounding neighbour.  

Thursday we will be taking the children to the river beach area we went last year. It is a beautiful place and the only challenges are the monkeys. Most of the children have trusted the Lord in the last two years so Gerry and Dave will have the privilege to help Timothy baptize them in the river. Please pray for us as we talk with and prepare the children as well as our fun day at the river.  

Now from some team members:  

"Gerry Rod here to say all is going well with the 5 youths in my small group. The Lord continues to amaze me through these kids as they are eager listeners and participants in all activities. The land visiting outing was a blast for all the kids especially this writer."    

From Elyse:  
"Namaste!!! Greetings here from the beautiful city of Bangalore, India. What a privilege it is to be able to serve such a wonderful and Godly family! This is my 2nd overseas GO team trip and I am enjoying my time here! This week we started our vbs with the kids and so far it has gone off wonderfully. I am in charge of the games and some of the teaching times. I teach Sunday school at home, but somehow this is very different and so I was very nervous. I think it is because I want to be able to convey the seriousness of God’s Word and what it really means to impact our lives everyday.  

I have been so convicted over these past few days. Many of these kids have lost everything for their faith or for their parent's faith in Jesus and yet they still find so much to be grateful for. It is a reminder to examine my own heart and make sure I am fully living for the Lord in every area of my life. It is also so wonderful to see the humble and obedient spirits these kids have. I see that they obey right away and do not hesitate. It is a beautiful thing to see. Again, it causes me to examine my heart and my attitudes. Do I truly obey the Lord without hesitation, or do I allow myself to question Him before I obey. Very convicting.    

I am learning so much from these children. I went to New Delhi last year and learned so much from the slum children there and I am learning so much from the children here at the home. We are learning about Moses and the Israelites this year and it has been wonderful to see the kids absorb the lessons about God and who He is, every day.  

We have been doing workshops in the afternoon after VBS and they have been so fun! Yesterday Dave did a workshop on first aid and how to take care of someone who is hurt when they are bleeding or injured. It was very interesting and I learned a lot! The kids had fun practicing putting on the bandages and gauze on each other. Today I did the workshop and it was on dog grooming. I had so much fun teaching the kids about how to take proper care of their pets. We talked all about washing them and clipping the nails. So fun!! They have a gentle German shepherd named Rosie and she was my example for me to practice on! We didn’t end up actually washing her or doing her nails, but we got to put some pet chalk on her and make her colourful. All the kids got to put blue and purple and pink colours on her ears and feet and tail. Afterwards we all decorated different colour bandannas to put on Rosie for fun!

I am so excited to be here and so excited to serve and do whatever needs to be done so that Timothy and Julie are encouraged and so the Lord can be glorified. I also love my team mates. They are all such wonderful and Godly examples and I am learning so much from them as well. Thank you. And Goodnight!!!"    

Thanks so much for your prayers and please keep praying.

Updated Monday, October 6
E-mail from Dave
Our team left LAX Thursday afternoon for Bangalore India.  We flew to Tokyo then on to Singapore for a 3 hours wait then another 5 hours to Bangalore. We were privileged to have the screaming kid on our first flight accompany us all the way. We arrived safely.

On our 2-hours trip from the airport to Timothy and Julie's home the bus blew out a tire and we got to wait for the spare to be fixed and replaced and then we were on our way.  

We arrived tired but excited to see the kids and how they had grown. We slept well and had church Sunday morning. Dave McKean spoke on lessons from Philippians. Later we packed up and went to the land they had purchased last year. Boy it looked different! They had fixed up the two buildings, painted them and put new roof on the buildings. They added a full bath to the caretaker’s house. They had planted chili, eggplants, tomatoes and beans - all growing well considering they also are in a drought time. One exciting thing was an elephant came thought the property on Saturday night so we had to fix the fences. It was a great privilege to see what God has done with the land.  

Tomorrow we start our VBS and our first work shop will be on first aid. Please pray for us to rest well and think clearly as we remain flexible with lessons.

Updated Saturday, October 4
The India team was prayed off the church parking lot on Thursday morning, and arrived in India without incident on Friday, met by Timothy at the airport. Unfortunately, visa complications at the Indian Consulate kept Stephanie from being able to travel with the team.  

They are jumping into their ministry with the kids as they also encourage Tim and Julie.  Thanks for praying for them all this week!