The More Things Change, The More They Stay the Same

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New Normal

All of us continue to adapt to a world that has changed much from what it was even six months ago. I realize that many of you are still under restrictions, yet in PNG we have only had 11 confirmed cases to date, none of them serious (on a side note…everyone is sure that it is here, it’s just that testing is very limited…and any severe cases may have been missed due to the various other sicknesses and diseases that take the lives of our people). As a church, we are able to meet pretty much normally, respecting those who wish to keep a distance.

Members of Capital City Baptist meet outside after services to praise God for His goodness!

New Classes

After a month-long lockdown, we were able to resume classes at Baptist Bible Institute of Port Moresby. We completed our latest 8-week course last week and plan to return to classes (Lord willing!) the first week of August.

Students in class for the “Life of Christ” course at BBIPOM.

New Opportunities

Because of the religious liberty in PNG, doors open up in places you could only dream about in other countries. Among other things we’ve done lately, we were able to go with Pastor Tau and Shalom Baptist to distribute Bibles at the University of PNG Medical School and speak to future doctors, dentists, nurses, and pharmacists. This is something we’ve looked forward to for over a year.

Some of the students at UPNG Medical School who received Bibles and heard a challenge from God’s Word to know the Lord and to serve our people!

New Construction

Lord willing, we hope to begin refurbishing our new home on the campus of Capital City Baptist Church soon. Through a series of “God-moment” connections here in Port Moresby, the Lord provided a used modular house for us, including the excavation work to prepare the site—at no cost to us! It will take a lot of renovation, but we thank the Lord for it, and look forward to the opportunity to use it for His glory!

This is where our refurbished bunkhouse will be located.

Same Great Bible

We have recently finished our draft of John’s Gospel and are working our way through the Book of Revelation. Keep this project in prayer! We are past the half-way point now, and long to see it completed!

Same Glorious Gospel

With all the problems we all see around the world, we must keep in mind that there is only one long-term (might I say, eternal) solution: The saving Gospel of Jesus Christ. From the global pandemic to the gender-based- and sorcery-accusation-related-violence here in PNG to the unbelievable unrest in countries around the globe, the one and only steady hope we have is Jesus Christ.

Same Great Need

Laborers are needed!

1. Pray with us for borders to open so we can get our new nurses for Kunai Health Centre. They are willing and waiting!
2. Pray for our students at BBIPOM that God will raise up laborers among them for His harvest. He is able!

Because He Is,
John & Lena Allen
2 Thessalonians 3:1

Kunai Health Centre:    KunaiHealthCentre.com

Baptist Bible Institute of Port Moresby:  facebook.com/BBIPOM

Here are some more photos to enjoy. Some of these were taken by Pastor Tau Abary and the people of Shalom Baptist Church (used by permission).

First, some of our BBIPOM students!

It is a blessing to teach those who are hungry for the Word and eager to serve the Lord!
Missionary ladies are a special bunch! Lena, Rebecca Florence, Chelsea Moorman, Danya Counts, and Trina Muldoon. All happened to be in town at the same time!
After months in the remote mountains, the expression on Danya’s face as she looks at all that ice cream is priceless. Yes, we got her some ice cream 🙂
A recent sunrise at Kunai–few places are more beautiful than this! (PC: Sarah Glover)

Only God

April 2020

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ONLY GOD
When I wrote our last update in February, none of us had any idea what would soon transpire globally. Never have any of us been forced to say “if the Lord will” as much as we are saying it now, but regardless, our God is doing great things!

ANSWER TO PRAYER
We have two new nurses who are scheduled to come once the borders re-open here in PNG. We can still use more nurses, but we praise the Lord for these two ladies who stepped up to the challenge.

FAITHFUL IN THE FIELD
The team at Kunai are continuing the ministry there. As of this writing we have no active cases of the virus in PNG, but our staff are prepared as much as possible for what may come. There are no ventilators or machines available out there, and no way to fly out critical patients. Therefore, we ask that you pray for the team on the ground, not only for their protection but for their witness.

It may not look like much, but it brought lots of medical and school supplies!

CONTAINER ARRIVED
Our container—filled with supplies that many of you donated—has arrived and cleared customs. At present it is difficult to find flights to transport the materials to our team at Kunai. Pray we can get these medical supplies and school materials up there soon!

BBI POM 1st class

BAPTIST BIBLE INSTITUTE OF PORT MORESBY
We reported in our last letter that our first week of classes went very well. Praise the Lord, the rest of the six-week term went even better! We had 20 registered students and anywhere from 15-25 visitors in attendance for every class. We finished on schedule just before the mandatory shutdown. When we reopen, we have even more students who have registered, and we are looking forward to getting back to classes!

Start of BBI POM classes–with social distancing before it was cool!

Because we wanted to continue teaching our students, we have begun a video series on the BBI POM Facebook page called, “Daily Words.” It is a brief lesson about how to study the Bible for yourself, using the text of Scripture as a reference. It is designed with our students in mind, but since it is in English, we hope others around the world will join us. Lena has also posted videos of most of the live sessions from our first class at either our BBI POM Facebook page or on our BBI POM YouTube channel.

In the uncertainty of these days, may we examine our hearts to see what the Lord may be trying to say to us as a church? Daniel prayed during the Judean exile, repenting for his people’s sins against their holy God (Daniel 9). Have we done the same? The present pandemic, the Australian bush fires, the locust swarms in Africa, the devastating tornadoes in the US—all of these in the last several weeks—can we not at least seek God and ask for His forgiveness, His mercy, and His favor? We who long for the return of the Lord Jesus—can we not admit that these present distresses are at the very least pictures of the birth pangs of judgment to come? And in confessing these things, can we not beg God for an unprecedented outpouring of His Spirit in reaching the world for Jesus Christ?

Thank you all for your faithfulness—and at such a time as this. The resourcefulness of God’s people to BE the church when they cannot assemble as the church has been amazing. May the Lord open doors of witness for us all, and may He do things beyond what we can even ask or think. He is able!

Because He Is,
John & Lena Allen
2 Thessalonians 3:1

Visit our Kunai Health Centre website for information about the clinic at Kotidanga

Some recent photos:

Baptist Bible Institute of Port Moresby

The online services have allowed us to enjoy the preaching of men in Australia, PNG, and the US.

Our God is Able!

OUR GOD IS ABLE!

BAPTIST BIBLE INSTITUTE OF PORT MORESBY

Praise the Lord for the successful first week of classes at BBI POM! We averaged 45 in attendance per session for the first three evenings. Registration for full-time students is set for 17 February.

Our first six-week course covers Creation to Christ, giving our students a biblical foundation of redemption. At present we are meeting at Shalom Baptist Church in the Port Moresby, and we are grateful for their gracious hosting of the classes. Our God is able!

KOTIDANGA BAPTIST ACADEMY

Sarah Glover reports from Kotidanga that she has almost three dozen students in the inaugural classes of KBA. We are so grateful to Jubilee Christian College and Grace Baptist Church in Australia for their help in obtaining materials! The members of Kotidanga Baptist Church have prayed for this for over seven years!

Willie Tapaqueo is the son of Kamea Bible translator, Yali Tapaqueo

Pray for Sarah as she is doing two sessions; a morning session for the young students to learn to read and write, and an afternoon session for the older students (who are attending the local community school) to improve their reading, writing, and math skills. And best of all—Sarah incorporates the Scriptures and the Gospel into her teaching. Our God is able!

KUNAI HEALTH CENTRE—CRITICAL STAFF NEED!

Please take time to read this and to pray with us:

During our recruiting trip at the end of 2019, though we received many supplies for the clinic, and though we saw much fruit in the meetings we were in, we were not able to recruit the nursing staff we need for 2020.

We will be critically short of nurses in the next few months! The last few months we have had five wonderful, capable nurses on staff. Two of those finished their one-year internship last week and returned home; another two will leave at the end of June, leaving only our national nurse Manandi.  Last year the clinic saw over 16,000 patients, and that is too many for three nurses, let alone one.

Dave Armstrong (left–Sarah Glover’s uncle) returned to Port Moresby on a flight with Lauren and Kyle Murphy–our RN couple who just finished an incredible one-year term at Kunai Health Centre. We will miss them!

Because of the time it takes to obtain paperwork for new nurses, as well as the need to give them a minimum of two months’ training before they can begin to take patients on their own, we need commitments from nurses now. If the Lord does not provide nurse interns by March 15, Kunai Health Centre will have to close temporarily beginning July 1, 2020, until such time as we get the staffing we need. We already have one nurse who has surrendered to come; and another, very experienced missionary nurse who is scheduled to come in October—but we need one or two more RNs to commit within the next few weeks.

Is the Lord burdening your heart to serve for one or two years as a nurse intern at Kunai? Do you know an RN who would be interested? Take a look at our new website, www.KunaiHealthCentre.com and learn about the ministry. Then, email  lenaallen@yahoo.com to get more information about this awesome opportunity to serve in missions on the front lines, meeting spiritual and physical needs among a remote people group in the mountains of Papua New Guinea.

And please, everyone, pray! Because—Our God is able!

Because He Is,
John & Lena Allen
2 Thessalonians 3:1

*A note of thanks to Marie Bell and Rachel Beard, who crafted our Kunai Health Centre website—great job!

Click here for a printable copy of the newsletter without the pictures

Thoughts from the Thruway

On the Road

It has been a whirlwind of activity the last few weeks since we arrived in the States. We have had some wonderful meetings with our supporting churches—some of whom we have not seen since we began this journey over 13 years ago! We have also reconnected with friends we haven’t seen in over 40 years (!), and those times have been precious as well.

We have met with many prospective missionaries, including preachers, nurses, educators, and those who have an interest in moving to the foreign fields for “secular” work in order to help churches to be planted. There are so many ways to be involved in reaching the world! Have you asked the Lord what He would have YOU to do?

Great News from Home

Sarah Glover, who has been at Kunai since 2010, is starting a Christian school for our village children in February 2020. This has been a prayer request of our believers at Kotidanga Baptist Church for the last several years, and in just the last few weeks that the Lord has made it possible. Praise the Lord for all the details He has worked it out!

Packing Up

Thank you so much for the incredible response we’ve received from those who have sent supplies and funds for the clinic, the Bible Institute, and for shipping! The Lord always blesses us beyond measure. When we finish up our meetings, we will return to Louisville to pack the container in time to ship it just after the New Year.

Baptist Bible Institute of Port Moresby

Soon we will be back in PNG, and preparations to receive our first intake of students for the new Bible school are already in full swing. We are excited to partner with the pastors of our fellow Baptist churches to train leaders for the future of our city and our nation!

Will you pray with us for the need we have for a venue for the school? At present, some of the city churches have graciously offered to host a block Bible school course at their facilities, but none of them are can serve as a permanent location. We are looking for a place that is easily accessible to students from around the city with a consistent backup power supply. Rent for such a venue in Port Moresby is astronomical and buying land (and putting up a building) is even more out of reach. We are confident that the Lord has the right place—pray with us as we seek to find a place and to raise sufficient funds to obtain it.

And while you are praying—pray with us regarding:

  • The need for nursing staff at Kunai Health Centre for 2020-2021
  • Our health and stamina in the work

Lord willing, the next time you hear from us we will be back in PNG. One of the biggest encouragements we’ve heard lately came from Rex Cobb, our missions’ mentor at BBTI. His words: “Thank you for going back! Many don’t.”

Monument to the Haystack Prayer Meeting

While in Massachusetts, we visited the “Haystack Monument,” which commemorates five Williams College students who began meeting in 1806 to dedicate their lives to the serve in foreign missions. Many believe the American foreign mission movement came from these humble beginnings.* Oh, that we had such a fervor to reach the world in our own day!

David Brainard’s grave in Northampton, Massachusetts. Brainard’s life, immortalized in Jonathan Edwards’ “The Life and Diary of David Brainerd,” [sic] has probably impacted more men and women to give their all to serve the Lord than any other English book.

Thank you all for your heart for the Lord and for us; you are the ones who make it possible for us to return. May God bless you and yours during this holiday season, and may we all have “2020 Vision” in the year to come!

Because He Is,

John & Lena Allen

2 Thessalonians 3:1

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Transitions

TRANSITIONS

Transitions are not always easy. They involve learning new people, new places, and new ways of doing things. There was a day when those things seemed romantic, but now—not so much.

On the other hand, in the last four months we’ve seen the Lord work as we’ve ministered in different places around PNG, India, and Australia. Believers have been helped, unbelievers have been challenged (and some saved!), and we’ve had specific answers to prayer. So all in all, we praise the Lord for His goodness!

…IN THE CLINIC

Since our last letter, we’ve had a lot of transition at Kunai Health Centre. Emma Stout and Marie Bell have returned home to the US after completing their time at Kunai. Chelsea Moorman, Danya Counts, and Kyle & Lauren Murphy have joined the team. We are grateful for each one of them, and only eternity will reveal the full impact they make in the lives of our Kamea people. Fully investing themselves in the medical ministry, they also are acutely involved in Kotidanga Baptist Church and with our people.

Ellie, Marie, Sarah, and Laura-Lee standing with Yaniamo and her family.

Reports from the team include the salvation of Yaniamo, a mom who was medevac’d by helicopter earlier this year. She returned to the village recently, and has since put her faith in Christ.

I never want to forget the great work our PNG national staff does at Kunai. We rarely mention the opposition any of us face on the field—but these faithful believers stand strong and are exemplary in their walk with the Lord, regardless of the troubles they face. Praise the Lord for them!

Using a borrowed big screen to transfer translated text into the Paratext program.

…IN BIBLE TRANSLATION

Checking on the revision of the book of Luke in Kamea resumed today. It was the first book we translated back in 2014, and having learned a lot since then, Pastor Ben and Bro. Yali wanted to work through it again. I’m grateful for Laura-Lee Alford being on the ground at Kunai to walk through the revision and back-translation with these men.

Last month I was able to begin our translation work on the Gospel of John. It is a wonderful book (aren’t they all!) and seeing its truths with fresh eyes is such a blessing!

…IN OUR LIVES

We are thankful for the gifts God gives to men, and even more for those who use their gifts faithfully. Dr. Mitch reviewed Lena’s MRIs and CT scan, and he says she does not need surgery for her neck pain. Dr. Nathan and Dr. Lewis were able to give her increased mobility and some relief from the pain with physical therapy and chiropractic care. We ask that you continue to pray with us for her healing from the constant pain.

In a couple of days we get to drive down the bouncy Highlands Highway to Lae and back for a supply run (3rd trip there in three months). The road is physically rough on Lena, but she needs to hold face-to-face meetings with medical officers there. When we return, amidst our other duties, we will pack up our boxes again as we prepare for our move to Port Moresby later in May. Sarah Glover is out of the village on a break, and we’re glad she’s here to help us.

Watching the Kamea language “Jesus Film” in the rain on the clinic porch.

It certainly isn’t the romantic part of missions, but it is needful nonetheless in order to transition to the ministry the Lord has for us. We are learning that the best way to lighten our own load is to help others carry theirs. God is always in total control, and when we cast our care upon Him, He gives us His yoke. And as we learn of Him, we find that His burden is easy, and His yoke is light.

All glory to Christ,
John & Lena Allen
2 Thessalonians 3:1

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Following are photos of happenings in the last couple of months. (Photo credit to Lena Allen, Marie Bell, Mary Beth Snyder, and historical photo archives)

Beloved Kunai

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Kotidanga Baptist Mission Campus at Kunai, December 2018

Beloved Kunai

Nobody said it was going to be easy.

On December 11th, 2018, we made the most difficult hike of our lives. It wasn’t the four landslides that made our trek so hard; it was the heaviness of leaving behind part of our hearts. Lena and I hiked to the Kanabea airstrip to fly out of our village for the last time as missionaries serving in Kunai.

Lena was able to catch a ride in the Kawasaki with Sam Snyder and Sarah Glover all the way to the top of the mountain, where they had to stop at the first landslide. I hiked up the mountain with only one companion, Andy Niko. Andy is one of our youth who was recently saved at Kotidanga Baptist Church, and he is growing. He stayed about three steps behind me as he watched me cry my way up the mountain. We met Lena and dozens of our friends at the top, and they helped us carry our possessions down the other side of the mountain to the airstrip.

No, it wasn’t supposed to be this hard.

An Unbelievable Month

Landslides had taken out sections of the “road” between the airstrip at Kanabea and Kunai just before we were to return in November, so we determined that we would use a helicopter to shuttle the materials over the mountain. The container that brought all the goods you friends in the USA had donated had just arrived, so we had two airplanes full of supplies, both scheduled to fly the same day. With all the weather issues we have had the last few months, we didn’t want to take a chance on everything being stuck at the airstrip with not enough carriers to bring it over the landslides. We’re grateful to SIL Aviation for flying the supplies in to Kanabea, and to T.J. Eiswald, their chopper pilot, who made quick work of the five shuttle loads of supplies. Three hours from the time the first aircraft took off with its load, everything was at the mission campus. I think that has to be a record for us!

The SIL Helicopter lives up to its “dust-off” moniker

SIL Chopper pilot T.J. Eiswald and Papa John

With on-going health issues, it is no longer prudent for us to continue serving in the remote mountains of Gulf Province, a place we’ve called “home” for almost eleven years. So after returning to Kunai, Lena and I began packing up our things as we started to say good-bye to our fellow believers, friends, and patients. It seemed there was always someone coming by the house to hug and cry with us, letting us know how much they will miss us.

Sarah Returned

A week before we left, Sarah Glover returned to Kunai from her furlough, and everyone was so glad to see her again. She has served our people since mid-2010, and among the many things she does, she has taught so many people to read and write, as well as being responsible for discipling many of our young ladies. Yes, we’re glad she’s back! 

Lena & Sarah Glover

Back-to-Back Big Sundays for Kotidanga Baptist Church

On November 25th Pastor Ben baptized 18 new believers! Our co-worker Sam Snyder also baptized their oldest son, Tommy, on that day. It was certainly a high day for the church! We’re excited for all that we’ve seen God do since Pastor Ben took the work; he has baptized 59 people in less than three years, and he is doing a great job as a pastor. His heart for the people is evident in his loving, uncompromising counsel with couples, families, and individuals. His expository preaching is Spirit-filled and Gospel-saturated, and it evidences a love for God’s Word that drives him into the text. We are so blessed to be able to work with him and his family.

Pastor Ben baptizing Londen Amon

Baptismal candidates on November 25, 2018

December 2nd was Pastor Ben’s first communion service. We did three weeks of teaching on the topic leading up to the big day. It was good for the Kotidanga Baptist family to come together around the table, remembering the death of our Lord Jesus and His sacrifice on our behalf.

December 9th was nothing short of amazing. Pastor Ben had prepared a special “last Sunday” for Lena and me. He invited local people to come, and wow, how many did come! I had the privilege of preaching the Gospel to a church house packed with dozens of visitors, using Paul’s message to the church leaders of Ephesus as my text (Acts 20).

Kotidanga Baptist Church choir

At the close of the service, Pastor Ben gave us envelopes with offerings from the church. One was taken from their missions fund, a total of USD$375 to help pay for our plane flight out of the bush! And the other was USD$125, which was taken up as a special offering that morning, also to help us with resettling expenses! We were not sure whether to laugh or to cry! Gratefulness overflowed from our hearts as we felt a deep humbling in our souls, because we know that these believers gave these gifts out of their poverty. Our Kamea people do not live on $1.00 a day or $2.00 a day—they don’t earn money. They plant gardens and live off what they can grow, and that’s all. There’s no market to sell their crops, as they have no way to get them to town. The money they get is from hiking a full day to another village and bringing 44 pound bags of rice on their shoulders to sell in our village market, earning about $5.50 for their efforts.

Following the service, several community leaders addressed those assembled, thanking the Lord and us for the service we have been blessed to provide (with the help of all of you back home who stand with us!). They all spoke of the ministry of Kunai Health Centre, which the Lord enabled Lena to begin in mid-2008. Some spoke of children and mothers whose lives have been saved; others spoke of the loving care received. A common refrain was that “Lena always showed us love, no matter who we are.” Love is in short supply in this world, and even more so in this remote part of the bush. We’re thankful that the Lord has allowed us to serve here.

Writing a New Chapter

We are grateful for our pastor, Matt Anders, who came to PNG in October to see us and discuss our future ministry options. We all agreed that we could and should continue serving here in PNG. At present we will be living in “town” where we need not be concerned with being isolated from medical help if needed. We plan to keep working on our Kamea New Testament project, plus recruiting as well as training new missionaries and interns as they arrive in PNG. The wonderful team on the ground back at Kunai will handle day-to-day operations of the clinic and other ministries, and we will continue to supply them with logistical support from here. This includes buying food, supplies, medicines, vaccines, baby milk, etc., as well as organizing flights to take it out to Kunai.

We are grateful for you, our supporters, who have stood with us faithfully since we began this journey in 2006. The work at Kunai is continuing, and though we are shifting gears, we are pressing onward to what the Lord has next. There’s plenty to do—open doors are all around us. Pray for us to have wisdom and grace as we minister the Word, and as we continue to seek the Lord’s direction (Psalm 37:3-7).

Our final weeks at Kunai gave us many opportunities to share the Gospel one-to-one with people. The last man who hugged me before I boarded the plane is a notoriously violent troublemaker. He and I sat for a good while on Sunday afternoon as I took him through the Gospel again; at the airstrip he had reddened eyes, and tears were brimming as we hugged. I reminded him of his need to repent and believe in Christ, and he nodded.

There are so many like him, not just here in PNG, but all over the world. Who will go and live among them, investing time and love and life to make the Gospel come alive before their eyes?

Nobody said it was going to be easy. Will you do it?

All glory to Christ,
John & Lena Allen
2 Thessalonians 3:1

Visit these recent posts too:

“The Team at Kunai”

“Our Last Week at Kunai, December 2018”


Here are plenty more photos from this amazing month (special thanks to Marie Bell and Mary Beth Snyder for some amazing photos!):

Watching the baptism from the cliff

Pastor Ben baptizing Setina Leften

Pastor Ben baptizing Jon Amon

There’s Kanabea airstrip on a clear day!

One of the SIL Kodiaks that serves us in the bush

We are grateful for the SIL pilots who have served Kanabea airstrip: Dave Barton, Fran Burgess, Christopher Clark, Josh Eicholtz, Jonathan Federwitz, Steve Geis, Jamie Halverson, Mike Littlefield, Jon Mork, and James Nelson…plus some MAF pilots who have served us over the years, like Richard Ebel, Holger Lasi, Richard Marples, and Remi VanVermeskerken…and let’s not forget our own Tyler Nikkel and Matt Allen!

TB Microscopy Training

April Harper came to teach our Kunai Health Centre staff how to read tuberculosis slides

Tuberculosis is a huge problem in PNG, as in many parts of the world. Kunai Health Centre currently treats over 75 patients for TB. April Harper and two friends came to help KHC staff better identify patients with TB.

Ellie using her new skills to read the TB slides

PNG Post Courier article about the Kunai Health Centre’s “baby milk program”

Some of the landslide damage on our “road”

Another blowout in the “road”–our men had worked hard to repair it, and then it blew out again, even worse

PNG Post Courier article about the landslides that have destroyed the road between Kanabea airstrip and Kunai

But it is still such a beautiful place…

Kunai beauty!

The Team at Kunai

We are so grateful to work with such a wonderful team at Kotidanga Baptist Mission at Kunai. Enjoy the photos!

[Photo credit: Marie Bell, Mary Beth Snyder]

Look at how many hiked over the mountain on December 4th to greet Sarah Glover and to help her carry her bags! It’s a 10-mile round trip, climbing and descending about 1,000 feet.

Sam and Mary Beth Snyder, with their children Tommy, Bethany, and Leland

Sarah Glover

Emma Stout

Laura Lee Alford

Marie Bell

Margaret

Manandi

Jon Mark

Ellie

Linda

Judas

Here are some memorable friends and patients:

Lena with her namesake, Lena Moses and her dad, Moses

David Koneo and his family; their son Eli (in the center) was our first milk baby back in 2009

Clinic kids…whether they come for treatment or immunizations, they hang around to watch the “Jesus Film” as it plays every day on the clinic porch

How many tiny ones we have seen!

Twin one…

…and twin two

No matter how busy the day at Kunai, the staff remembers what is most important…

…the spiritual focus of leading people to Jesus over-arches all that is done at Kunai. All glory to God!

 

 

 

Back in the work!

May 2018 update

Great Opportunities
We have shared the Gospel and stories of God’s goodness with so many in the last five months. While passing through the Middle East, I had the blessing of sharing the Gospel for a good while with a Hindu man while we rode in a small bus filled with Afghanis, Pakistanis, and other nationalities. When in the US we had many chances to preach the Word and to testify of God’s mercy and grace in His work in PNG. Since arriving back in PNG, we’ve already had opportunities to share the Gospel with people great and small. As we get settled back in at Kunai, we look forward to resuming our duties in the clinic and in Bible translation and teaching, all of it with a view of making Christ known even more among our people.

We were the youngest missionaries at this conference! Hard to stack up against Dr. Don Sisk, Margaret Stringer, and Randy & Jeannette Alderman…we felt like newbies! Thanks to Pastor & Mrs. Rusty Smith for the blessing of being in such a conference.

Great Provision
We are thankful for the new interns the Lord gave us as we recruited for missionaries around the US during the last four months. The Lord also touched many to give supplies for Kunai Health Centre, and when it was done, we shipped over half a ton of items for the clinic, plus another 150 pounds of vitamins and medicine we carried back in our suitcases. To God be the glory!

Sorting supplies with Bruno Keller at JAARS (photo credit, Geoff Russell)

Great Co-workers
While we’ve been away, the Kunai team has held a great youth camp with many saved, and brought Good News FM Radio (our new radio station) online. Would you pray for our team as we continue to work together to fulfill the Great Commission among the Kamea?

Co-workers: Sam & Marybeth Snyder, and Sarah Glover;
Clinic staff: Chelsea Moorman, Manandi Dagoino, Ellie Polmek, Jon Mark, Judas Gidion, Linda, and my wife Lena;
Kamea New Testament Translation team: Pastor Ben Samauyo, Yali Tapaqueo, and me;
Our new interns: Emma Stout and Laura Lee Alford, who will join the team over the next couple of months.

Great God
We enjoyed seeing how the Lord is blessing in our son’s work, Capital City Baptist Church in Port Moresby, as we transitioned back through there and did our supply buying. We were able to visit with our dear friends, Pastor Tau & Suzanne Abary, at Shalom Baptist Church. Pastor Tau suffered a severe stroke earlier this year, but by God’s grace he is recovering. Pray that God will heal him completely, and that He will strengthen his family during the long recovery process.

John & Pastor Tau Abary

Great Thanks

Jon Mark said to tell everyone who prayed for him, “THANK YOU!” What a smile!

While we were gone to the US, our son Matt and our friends at Capital City Baptist in Port Moresby took care of our friend from Kunai, Jon Mark. Jon is a worker in our clinic and a faithful member of Kotidanga Baptist Church. He is also completely blind! He has lived in constant pain for the last several years, and earlier this year Matt flew Jon to Port Moresby for his third eye surgery. This time his pain is finally gone! Praise the Lord, and thank you to everyone who has prayed for Jon Mark!

We appreciate all of you for your faithful support of the work here. We were blessed to visit many while we were home, and we thank each of you for being a blessing to us. Special thanks go to our home church, Landmark, for being faithful in preaching of the Word of God and for their God-glorifying music program. It was so refreshing!

All glory to Christ,
John & Lena Allen
2 Thessalonians 3:1

PS…enjoy some extra pictures!

This is a bookshelf in the Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC. Each yellow book represents a language in which the Word of God has not yet been translated. By God’s grace, one day we will see the Kamea language moved out of the yellow book section!

We recently received a donation from the Ukarumpa International School in Papua New Guinea towards the operational expenses of Kunai Health Centre. Thank you all for your generosity to help our people!

Aerial view of the campus of Capital City Baptist Church and South Pacific International Academy in Port Moresby, PNG, where our son Matt and his family serve. The facility is located to the right of center in the middle of the photo.

Our US family at our home church in Louisville, KY.

Providential Meetings

Home for the Holidays
Lena and I made it to the US just before Christmas. It was great to be with family and friends for the holidays before we hit the road during the first week of January. We do have to admit that leaving temperate PNG for the frigid Midwest was an adjustment!

Open Doors
The Lord opened a door for Lena and me to visit the Middle East on our way to the US for our furlough. I had the wonderful opportunity to teach for a couple of weeks in a seminary in Jordan. There were both Jordanians and Egyptians in the class, and it was a blessing and joy to work with them.

I’m grateful for Dr. Ghassan Haddad and the work of Biblical Theological Seminary as they train laborers for the Arab-speaking world. We passed through Dubai on the way to Jordan, and were also blessed to see the work being done there in the United Arab Emirates. The Word of God is not bound!

A couple from the jungle trying to blend into the desert.

Recruiting and Replenishing
The Lord has given us great meetings in January and  February. We have seen the Lord move in hearts as we’ve shared what God is doing in PNG. We’ve seen many long-time friends and met many new ones. God has been truly good to us!

One of our major goals this trip is to recruit nurses for Kunai Health Centre and to recruit teachers to start a school for our Kamea children at Kotidanga. We have met some fine people and have had appointments at Christian colleges to speak to prospects. Praise the Lord, He gave us two new workers for the clinic: Emma Stout, from Franklin Road Baptist Church; and Laura Lee Alford, from our home church. Amen! Pray with us that the Lord will raise up even more missionaries, nurses, and teachers!

Finally, we are looking to ship these specific medical-related supplies (and only these items):

  • ibuprofen (Advil or generic)
  • naproxen (Aleve or generic)
  • band-aids
  • ACE wraps (2”-6”)
  • muscle rub (i.e. Ben-Gay)

If you wish to help by donating these items, please send them before March 31, 2018 to:

John Allen c/o David Allen
1077 Weavers Run
West Point, KY 40177

We plan to pack and ship them in early April, just before we head back to PNG on April 19th. We are thankful for the donations received already. May God richly bless all of you who have given to this cause!

Back Home in PNG
Kotidanga Baptist Church held its first Youth Camp in January. Our good friend Phil Parry was the main speaker, and he, along with Pastor Ben, Matt Allen, Sam Snyder, and a host of others put on a camp like our villages had never seen. 17 young people came to faith in Christ, and many more made life-changing decisions. We thank the Lord for all the work that everyone did to make this happen. So many stories to be told! (Click here to see the video of the camp.)

Crazy games!

Real crazy games!

Biblical preaching!

Thank you all for your faithful prayers and support. We are only able to do what we do because of your faithful prayers and support. May the Lord put credit on your account for your part in His work in PNG!

Serving Him in the Field,
John & Lena

PS: Enjoy some more camp photos!

Bird’s eye view of Kotidanga Youth Camp

Here are some of the people who made the camp happen:

Bro. Phil Parry lead the teaching.

Pastor Ben Samauyo lead the camp for Kotidanga Baptist Church.

Bro. Sam Snyder

Mrs. Ellie Polmek

Our nurse, Miss Chelsea Moorman, with her       friends

Bro. Yali Tapaqueo

Bro. Matt Allen

God is still God!

GOD IS STILL GOD!                                                          click here for printable copy

Hello from Kotidanga Baptist Church in Gulf Province, Papua New Guinea!

BEN’S ORDINATION

We had a packed house at Kotidanga Baptist for Pastor Ben’s ordination.

In January 2017, Kotidanga Baptist Church voted to make Ben Samauyo their pastor. During our recent Pastors’ Workshop, we held Ben’s ordination.

Ben presents his doctrinal statement before his ordination.

It was a great to have Pastor Philip Sorulen from Calvary Baptist in Lae,  Matt Allen from Port Moresby, and my co-worker Sam Snyder  take part in the ordination service. Pastor Philip preached several times while he was with us, and he was a great blessing to our people and to Pastor Ben.

TTMK director and founder of Capital City Baptist in Port Moresby, Matt Allen, and his Kamea translator, Pastor Kevin Samawe

 

BAPTIZING NEW BELIEVERS

At the end of the special meetings, Ben baptized 11 who had been saved in recent months. Thank the Lord for these young converts! 

Jon Mark, one of our most faithful church members, is blind. He works at Kunai Health Centre and he doesn’t let much slow him down! He was one of those who followed the Lord in believer’s baptism in June.

  

BRING ON THE VISITORS

We also had ten visitors from Pensacola Christian College who came to observe the clinic ministry. Nine were nurses or nursing students, and they got to experience a lot while they were here.

PCC visitors pose with the staff of Kunai Health Centre.

During their visit we had a school health check day, with over 600 students coming from villages as far as three hours’ walk away. It certainly was busy! While they proceeded through various stations (vision, hearing, etc.) they also heard the Gospel in groups and in personal witness.

Youth who came for health check day

In addition, June was a record month at the clinic with 2,100 regular patients PLUS the 600 who came for health checks. That’s a lot of patients, and a lot of patience 🙂 Thank the Lord for all the opportunities we had to share the Gospel during those busy clinic days.

 

BETHEL BAPTIST IN LAE

Bethel Baptist Choir

Lena and I recently returned from Lae where I had the privilege to speak for a few days at Bethel Baptist Church. Many responded openly to the preaching of the Word of God, including some who put their faith in Christ.

Singing men from Liberty Baptist in Lae

Visitors came from several different churches around the city, including some students from Lae University of Technology. Special thanks to Pastor Timothy Sogori, his wife Ruth,  and his people for putting the meeting together!

 

BUSY DAYS AHEAD

We had two new nurses join us this week. Chelsea Moorman (from the US) and Manandi Dagoino (from our neighboring village) are now part of the Kunai Health Centre staff. Pray that they orient well and that the Lord will bless their labors for Him.

Thank you for your continued prayers for our people. Several responded to our last post, and we covet your continued fervent prayers for our country, Papua New Guinea. God is still God, and as a friend wrote recently, “our enemy has an expiration date.” Amen!

Serving Him in the Field,

John & Lena Allen
2 Thessalonians 3:1

Enjoy the extra photos!

Ben & Anjuta flew out with us to attend a pastors’ conference.

Many patients are still captivated watching the “Jesus Film” whether in Pidgin or in Kamea.

Ben came to the clinic and shared the Gospel with this young church member whose life was ending. The young man affirmed his faith in Christ alone, and in a short time he passed into eternity. Are you ready if your time were to come today?