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

Click here for printable copy

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)

New Things

Featured

NEW OPPORTUNITIES

MABT Students at WorldView India.
James & Toree Overton oversee these students in the Master of Arts in Bible Translation course at WorldView India.

Lena and I had a wonderful trip to minister again at WorldView India in January. James and Toree Overton do a wonderful job leading and teaching the Bible translation students at the college. It was a joy to share how to use Chronological Bible Storying as a tool in church planting simultaneously with translating the Scriptures. These students come from around India and Myanmar, and are a delight to work with. We praise the Lord for all the opportunities to speak in church, chapel, small groups, and one-to-one. Pray with us that the Lord will continue to raise up faithful ministers of the Gospel in this needy area of the world!

NEW NURSES

The clinic at Kunai Health Centre has been extremely busy the last several months. The nurses and our national staff are doing a great job ministering to the physical and spiritual needs of our Kamea people. Next week we will be in Lae city for our medicine and supply buy, and there we will be meeting two incoming nurses: Chelsea Moorman and Danya Counts. Chels was with us for 2017-2018, and this is Danya’s first time.

On cool mornings, patients prefer to sit out in the sun on the grass.

Pray for them and the team on the ground as they continue to treat patients, and as they labor in discipleship and evangelism.

NEW SCRIPTURE USES

Since we began translating the New Testament into Kamea almost five years ago, we have labored to find ways to make it accessible to our people. Pastor Ben has taught the church directly from the newly translated text, and Sarah and Laura-Lee have used it in literacy classes. We have produced videos of the Life of Christ using the Kamea New Testament, and these are shown daily at the clinic as well as distributed on mobile phones. Now the nurses have begun using the Kamea New Testament portions to do discipleship with the young ladies in the church. They said that the girls are really excited to hear and to read the Word in their own heart language!

NEW VISION

Lena and I believe our next step is to move to Port Moresby and to partner with our son Matt, his family, and the ministry of Capital City Baptist Church. We have always felt welcome there, and the Lord has given us sweet friendships among those believers. We can continue the Bible translation project and keep giving logistical support to Kunai Health Centre, as well as orienting new missionaries as they arrive, plus all of the many ministry opportunities in that growing city.

Capital City Baptist Church Campus, 9 February 2019

The move will involve building a place to live and obtaining a vehicle, and we are sure our great God will take care of those details in His way and in His time. As you remember us and these ministries (Kunai and Port Moresby) in prayer, could you also pray for Lena? It looks as though she may need surgery on her neck again, perhaps later this year.

How blessed we are to be such privileged children of the King! He lets us work for Him among His people in many places, He lets us see His power in transformed lives, and He blesses us with His presence, His Word, His grace, and His love. And then He gently reminds us, “Freely ye have received—freely give.” May we all be busy about giving that same good news of the Gospel that He so freely gave to us. The world, near and far, is waiting…


All glory to Christ,

John & Lena Allen

2 Thessalonians 3:1

Enjoy a few photos of our visit to India. The Gospel is being preached in that great land, but there is so much more to do!

Enjoying a visit with our good friends, Dr. Babu Varghese and his family.
Neena, Lena,and Jessie; we are blessed to know such faithful believers.
Several thousand attended the five-day preaching convention while we were there. Over 200 made professions of faith.
Feeding the multitude at convention is no easy task!