Although Simon and Annika Flanagan are currently on home assignment they are in regular contact with the Mengen church and particularly one of the Bible teachers. The church is doing well as the three Bible teachers teach the church weekly. Pray for two couples whose husbands function as Bible teachers and for the Bible teacher in training. Also pray for another couple where the husband is a trained Bible teacher who has recently returned to serving as a Bible teacher, and a couple where the husband serves the church as a deacon. They feel stretched to their limits while aiming to help, encourage and challenge the church. Shepherding the church is no easy task. Pray for strong marriages, and that God would protect them and their families. Also, pray that their needs would be met.
Since leaving PNG urgently, for family health needs, Simon and Annika have been considering a trip back in the middle of their home assignment time. The main purpose is to encourage the church and particularly the Bible teachers. Departing quickly, meant they missed the last three months of preparing them for their absence. Going back for a short trip would enable Simon to check and write lessons to leave them with for the last half of their time away. Another purpose would be to visit a few villages to see if the door is open for the Gospel to go there upon their return. Pray for wisdom in deciding if, and when, they can build this trip into their home assignment time. Pray for God to open the door and make the trip a reality.
One of their main goals, when they return, is to see some new church plants in Mengen villages that have not heard the Gospel yet. Pray for open doors for the Gospel in new villages and for the thousands of Mengen people yet to hear and understand the Gospel for the first time. Pray for open doors amongst opposition. Simon and Annika have seen, through visits, the desire for the Gospel but people are afraid of community pressure, and because of that, it is hard to gain an entrance into new areas. When some communities were introduced to the Bible in their own language, they eagerly read it, with help, and got a greater understanding of it being God’s message to them. They were full of questions, about life, death, Jesus, and what is taught. Like us all, they need the Gospel and need to learn of a loving Saviour who has paid it all in their place.
Pray that God would work and that they can find a creative way to enter a new area, or that some are brave enough to open that door and give them an invitation in spite of the trouble that might come their way. They expect resistance and persecution, but Simon and Annika believe in the power of the Gospel to save. PLEASE PRAY WITH THEM!