I thank my God in all my remembrance of you,
always offering prayer with joy in my every prayer for you all,
in view of your participation in the Gospel
from the first day until now (Philippians 1:3-5).
As we review God’s blessings in 2016 and press on into 2017, I have never been more thankful to Him for you, for all of our precious, faithful partners in the ever glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ, for all His wonderful blessings upon the Provosts, the SGA staff, and all of our ministries!
Hundreds of Immanuel’s Child Christmas outreaches are scheduled. Your prayers have sustained us. Your support has made all of our ministries possible. Our Lord has blessed our shared endeavors to advance His Kingdom and glorify Himself.
It was a challenging year for the Provosts. Last June, Louetta had major heart issues, but our Lord provided resolution and her recovery has gone very well. Last September, I also had heart issues and again, our Lord provided resolution. By His grace, my recovery is complete and I am writing, with renewed energy, from cold, snowy Moscow.
Throughout 2016, many thousands have been won to Christ, hundreds of new churches have been planted, more than 1,000 have been trained for ministry leadership, and 7,000 orphans have been reached and discipled.
In Russia, a new “Anti-Missionary Law” allows for banning Gospel proclamation outside the walls of a registered church building. I preached to more than 5,000 servants of Christ at the Baptist National Congress that God’s command to preach the Gospel must always have priority over the state’s attempt to stop them.
Since then, our Lord has led us to launch a massive new initiative to help Russian churches take the Gospel to vast Far East Russia, an unreached area as big as America with only 62 Bible-preaching churches. Taking the Gospel to hundreds of isolated villages requires small airplanes. Our Lord has already given us five airplanes, and eight Russian believers are being trained to fly them. An SGA RMC is planned for Khabarovsk, 12 missionary pastors are ready to be sent, and 334 orphanages are waiting for the Gospel. Antioch Initiative training is being conducted in Yakutsk. We are planning a major pastors conference for January 20-21 in Khabarovsk.
In Ukraine, Irpen Biblical Seminary celebrated 25 years and 1,700 graduates impacting all of Ukraine. The country’s president, Petro Poroshenko—convinced of the positive influence of Protestant churches over the centuries—determined that Ukraine will celebrate the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation throughout 2017 at the highest levels. The Baptists have more than 5,000 Reformation celebration events scheduled.
Please join with us in praise for these most wonderful developments. For all that has been accomplished in 2016, we give glory to our Lord Jesus Christ. He has done it all and is worthy of all our praise.