A Letter From Mike

Mike Duggins, Director of Ministry Development with Campus Crusade For Christ International, wrote a thank you to those who provide financial support.  In the Fall newsletter he wrote:

Thank you for making a powerful difference in the lives of children through your partnership with Cru and our GAiN ministry.  I just returned from a trip to Africa where I helped our team meet pressing physical needs.  Meeting those needs opened a door to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with hurting people.

Over and over we talked with people who had experienced the love of Christ.  That love was expressed by local Christian volunteers who distribute the aid you helped provide.

As people experienced the love of local Christians, they desired to know the God whom these believers serve.  You will be glad to know that many of those receiving aid also came to faith in Christ.

You really are making a difference through your partnership with us.

Thank you and God Bless you!



December 25, 2012 at 1:50 pm Leave a comment

“Left For Dead”

“Left For Dead” is the title of an article in the Fall 2012 newsletter from Campus Crusade For Christ International.  This is Danford’s story:

To this day, nobody knows for sure how Danford ended up in a garbage dump on the outskirts of his city in Africa.  Police suspect that he was born to a prostitute and abandoned in the rubble.

In a country where the unemployment rate is over 90%, women are desperate to provide for their families and are willing to do anything to make money.  Many have become trapped in prostitution, enslaved in a life of constant danger.  Children born into this life are often abandoned.

Into this nightmare, a beautiful baby boy was born.  When he arrived at the Danai Children’s Home he was given a name: Danford.  Danford’s story isn’t unique.

Thousands of children are orphaned and abandoned each month.  Recent estimates suggest that about 400 million children live on the streets around the globe.  They struggle for survival, scraping a living from dumps like the one where Danford was found.  They rarely eat enough, and what they do eat does little to provide the nutrients their growing bodies need.  Clean water is scarce and death and disease are common.

After Danford was rescued from the garbage heap, he was brought to the Danai Children’s Home.  Still a young child, his life was fragile.  At Danai, Danford was fed daily, cared for with regular medical attention, and showered with love.  A life that once seemed doomed to end far too soon has instead blossomed into something beautiful and full of life.  Today, Danford is a smiling, young boy.

According to his caregivers, he gets excited every day when he hears the plates being arranged in the kitchen.  Lunch is his favorite meal, and his favorite food is the fortified rice that GAiN provides to thousands of children every day.  Even more important: Danford now has the opportunity to hear about Jesus Christ and respond to His message of hope.

Through our support of Campus Crusades For Christ we are blessed to be a part of giving love, hope and help to those in need and lead them into a relationship with Jesus.

December 19, 2012 at 2:22 am Leave a comment

Bricks To Gravel

FARMS International’s latest newsletter reports to Tomoka Christian Church on ministering to the Christian community in many remote parts of this world.  “God has orchestrated amazing opportunities for this ministry to reach out to Christians in challenging areas … ”

In the remote areas that FARMS International is working they tell us that the church is growing and call it “nothing less than a miracle.”

“Missionaries, native evangelists, teachers and development workers have made great sacrifices to equip and encourage believers and God truly is adding to his church daily.”

Using funds from FARMS International, families are able to make a living from their projects and feed other communities.  For example, some projects include a fish farm and market; planting ginger; raising and selling pigs and cows.    One young man started a pineapple garden and has harvested his first crop.  He cares for over 1500 plants.  These families are faithful tithers and one is a pastor.  Others have used funds to start a lab and dispensary, and to buy a microscope and supplies.    A village store has been started by another family and they have enough income to provide for the family needs.   Banana plantations and mango orchards are other ways FARMS International funds have been used to help families to help themselves.  Turmeric is also grown.  The orange spice is used in Asia to flavor curries and is very profitable for growing.

In areas where gravel is not a usual commodity, bricks are processed to create gravel.

The newsletter tells us, “This is only possible because of your love and support.  As a result, your life is blessed by the prayers of those you  help.  Yes, they really do pray for us!  Furthermore, as God uses FARMS to grow churches and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ in these difficult areas of the world, we are hastening the return of our Lord.”

November 22, 2012 at 4:18 pm Leave a comment

Greetings From Albania

Genci Cesula partners with Tomoka Christian Church through the Slavic Gospel Association in Loves Park, IL.  In his church in Albania he has been serving as senior pastor since this past May.  He writes in his latest newsletter, “Dear brothers & sisters, partners in the gospel, greetings in the name of our Lord.  We are doing well by God’s grace.  Our kids are back to school and they are enjoying it.  Arta (Genci’s wife) has started her language lessons.  I continue to serve at the church as pastor, with more responsibilities.”

He reports that they are encouraged by God’s work in their church.  They are starting small groups after their sermons to discuss applying the message to their daily lives.  “This is an opportunity for believers to have fellowship together around God’s word.  We are also encouraged how people in general are growing, especially the young.  We as leadership are discipling a number of believers and Arta is discipling a number of girls.”

In his update on their outreach ministry he tells of an American dentist expressing a desire to return to his church.  The dentist worked for 4 days from 10:00 in the morning until 9:00 at night, and he treated approximately 30 people each day.  He was assisted by several Albanian dentists.  During this time, they were “encouraged that some of our believers helped in  reaching the people who came and shared the gospel with a number of them.”

Arta wrote on the children’s ministry,  “The place where our church has been meeting for the last two years is part of a big apartment building where about 100 families live.  “There were 24-45 children attending from the neighborhood.  This year we used the Answers in Genesis curriculum.  The children really enjoyed learning about God’s creation, God’s point of view and God’s way of salvation.  Some of the parents really appreciated the program.”

Genci and Arta end their newsletter with their prayer requests:

“Please pray that the transition of the church to Albanian leadership will go well.

Please pray that God will reveal His will where he wants the church to be and provide for this great need.

Please pray for the leadership of Grace that will lead by example.

Please continue to pray for the salvation of our parents and relatives.

Please continue to pray for our low support level.”

November 20, 2012 at 2:59 am Leave a comment

We’re on the move!

The Tomoka Missions Blog has a new home on the web here: www.missions.tomoka.cc. Please adjust your browser bookmarks if that is how you got here.

If you subscribed via e-mail you can relax and do nothing — you’ll continue to receive e-mails as new information is added to the Tomoka Missions Blog.


May 25, 2012 at 3:03 pm Leave a comment

Direct From Kenya

Tomoka Christian Church has heard from Jordan and Lee Anne Johnson who work with our partners in ministry at AfricaHope in Kenya.  They are excited over the wonderful things God is doing for their ministry.  Here is a part of their report.

Greetings from Kenya!  It is always surprising how quickly time seems to pass.  This year, we start our tenth year with New Mission Systems International and one and a half years ago, we left the United States to begin our second term of ministry with AfricaHope.  As we look back over the last few years, we marvel at the ways God has lead us in ministry, matured us and constantly renewed us with his love and grace.

The longer we serve overseas, the more we relish the Gospel of Christ.  In the midst of drought, famine and proverty, God is active and the joy of Christ is able to fill people’s lives in a way nothing else can.  We are thankful that God continues to call us to proclaim this message through our lives and ministry with AfricaHope!

Here is a brief glimpse of AfricaHope’s ministry in 2011:

*Training and encouragement for the leaders of 11 young village churches

*Completion of two major water projects providing water for over 4,000 people.

*Provision of scholarships and discipleship for 42 orphans and vulnerable children.

*Restocking for 150 families who lost all of their livestock during the last drought.

*Capacity building and support for the caregivers of over 100 orphans.

*Ongoing development partnership with three local grade schools

All glory be to our God and Father!  This coming year we pray that he will do this and more according to His purpose and plan.

Thank you again for your support!  Blessings to you all from Kenya!

May 12, 2012 at 4:13 pm Leave a comment

Give God The Glory

One of the missions Tomoka Christion supports is Bible League International.  Have you ever wondered, “What can one person do?”  Listen to the results of one person at a time added together many times over:

With help from friends like you in 2011, Bible League International provided more than 2 million Bibles and New Testaments to more than a quarter of a million national Christians in more than 55 countries around the world.  These Christians, members of local churches and other ministry partners, helped people to understand God’s Word by leading Bible studies.  They used the Bibles and Bible study materials you provided to help people meet Jesus Christ and place their faith in Him.

In 2011, Bible League International trained 276,106 national Christians to share God’s Word.  Join with them in giving God the glory as you look at the ministry accomplishments these believers reported by His grace and through your faithful support of our ministry.

People Completing A Bible Study:  2,551,143

Bible Study Groups:  221,660

New Church Members/Baptisms:  380,541

New Churches Established:  2,210

You helped to make this kind of impact possible!  Thank you!

With the aid of technology, God’s Word has no boundaries.  Also from Bible League International:

Thank you for your gift to provide Digital Bible Libraries.  You’re helping to remove barriers to providing God’s Word to people who want, especially those who can’t afford it or who are at risk of persecution if found with a Bible.

Digital Scriptures offer an efficient and inexpensive way to provide God’s Word and Bible study materials to Christians with limited access.  Ministry partners in several highly sensitive countries are already getting them into underground church networks.  The built-in security features mean that believers will be far less at risk than if they had printed Christian materials.

Thank you for your support of this cutting-edge technology.  Because of it, many will understand God’s salvation is for them!

May 8, 2012 at 1:27 am Leave a comment

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Tomoka Christian Church

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