Saturday, December 12, 2009

Thanksgiving Dinner 2009

Grace and Peace be yours in abundance to you who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours…

First we’ll share a few ways that Grace and Peace have abounded in our lives:
Sharon had the follow-up visit with the surgeon on Nov. 11th but had to wait an additional week for the complete pathology report. She has DCIS (ductile cancer in situ) which is not invasive and the tumor was small, 7mm. This is all good news as far as cancer goes. She is still doing therapy stretching exercises with her right arm to combat the effects of the surgery. The next step is an appointment with an oncologist on Dec. 22 to determine what further treatment will be recommended.

Thanksgiving gave us a week to be with Melissa and some time with Sharon’s side of the family near Charlottesville, Va. This is final exam week for our daughter, Melissa who finishes her 1st semester at James Madison University and has adjusted nicely. Heather is in Hopewell, Va. with grandparents, working as part time church secretary for West End Presbyterian Church while preparing to leave in February to teach English as a second language in Seoul, Korea.

Getting better acquainted with brothers and sisters in Christ at both Occoquan Bible Church and Capitol Hill Baptist Church has been a priority. Besides having people in our home, we participated in a 7:00 am Tuesday morning class on counseling entitled, “How People Change”. We attend a home group which has been reviewing the book, Respectable Sins. The Sunday School class is studying I and II Peter. Besides this, we listen to lectures from a course called Islam Through Christian and Muslim Eyes. Sharon read the book by Orson Wells, Homage to Catalonia in which the author makes the observation back in 1936 that Spain seemed to be the most atheistic European country. We both helped out at the 2 evangelistic Christmas Teas offered at CHBC. Together with the Muhas we have been developing brochures and info packets to distribute to our supporters. Peter and Scott are also contacting new churches to see if they would be interested in pursuing church planting in Madrid. We are so grateful for the input of everyone who gives us ideas and helps to push our info technology ability to higher levels! We are trying to blog and twitter to help the younger generations keep track of us.

The hand of God is evident as events take place to prepare for the Muhas and McMillans to begin working in Spain. 5.84 million people live in the greater metropolitan area of Madrid, the 3rd largest city in Europe. Las Tablas is a new housing development on the northern side of Madrid comprised of various nationalities. Already a Friday evening get together has been established by a few local believers who gather with interested guests for a study through the book of Mark.
About 100 people attended the recently held marriage seminar. We communicate back and forth on issues relating to doctrine and practice as well as personal matters, to begin the process of team building since we have not worked together before.
The following is an excerpt from a church planter already working in a different area of Madrid:
“There were about 75 present (at the Thanksgiving dinner), a little less than half non-Christian, including multiple nationalities. At one table of 8, there were 6 different ones! That´s indicative of the reality of immigration in Europe that is changing the cultural landscape, and the way ‘church’ is done in Spain.”

As we prepare to serve the Lord in a new church plant in Spain one of the challenges we face is the need for additional financial support. Our monthly financial need for Spain is $8090 a month. That amount includes; salary, insurances, transportation, ministry expenses, retirement, and other services. We do not have a guaranteed salary with TEAM, just the amount that comes in through those who partner with us. Our present monthly income is an average of $4075, which means that we are at 50% of the level we need to leave for Spain in June of 2010. Please be in prayer with us as we contact those churches and families who will want to invest in the church plant in Madrid, Spain. With the additional medical expenses we have been stretched more than usual. When we move to South Carolina in January we will look for part-time jobs to offset recent expenses. We anticipate grace and peace to abound in our hearts as we follow and trust the Lord.

Another move is approaching: #19. We love everywhere we go, but it hurts to leave from wherever we are at present!
New address as of January 5th: 137 Haywain Drive Chapin, SC 29036

One last thing before we close:
Do you get excited when you hear amazing stories about what God is doing at the four corners of the earth? Here is an opportunity to lock arms with others, join in His work and really make a difference: For the first 100 days of 2010, TEAM is challenging everyone to join in a campaign called Everyone One Hundred. From January through early April, you’ll get weekly emails with great information and important prayer requests from around the world. Your prayers are vital! Plus, you can join in the effort even further by giving financially, if God puts that on your heart. There is no obligation, and it’s easy to sign up at A 100 day challenge…we are going to do it – come join us! By the way, if you don’t use the Internet, you can also sign up by calling TEAM at 800-343-3144.

Joyfully in Christ,
Peter & Sharon McMillan

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