September 2012 Update
Larry & Sallie Fogle (2001)
REPORT ON LARRY’S PEP MINISTRY TRIP TO LIBERIA JULY 21 – AUGUST 13
(Pictures already posted on Facebook – find us at PastoralEnrichmentProgram)
Short-term missionaries Darrell and Donna Guenter are filling in for Mark and Nancy Sheppard in Monrovia during their furlough, and therefore served as our hosts for this trip. They served us in so many ways to provide for us and make us comfortable.
My team-teacher on this trip was Miss Sherry Segal, a former BMM missionary who started her ministry in LIBERIA then worked with Sallie and me in ZAMBIA. There she was an invaluable help in the establishment of the new Bible Institute we opened and directed. Her most recent years have been spent working in American higher education, mostly in Christian colleges.
Longing to visit “her people” in LIBERIA again, Sherry asked if she might accompany us on one of our teaching trips there. When the African leaders heard of her interest they offered her an enthusiastic invitation because of her expertise in Christian education.
When we made the arrangements for Sherry to team-teach with me on this trip, the plan was that Sallie would accompany us. In the end, however, we did not have enough money to buy tickets for both me and for Sallie. But by that time the plans for the trip were well established. You can be sure that under these unusual circumstances we worked closely with our missionaries and national church association leaders in LIBERIA, making ourselves accountable to them so as to guard our personal testimonies and the work of the Lord. They viewed the precautions we took as more than sufficient to allay any concerns.
Sherry and I shared the teaching time at Jake Memorial Baptist College in Monrovia during our first two weeks in LIBERIA. She taught a total of 16 class hours on “School Administration and Methodology.” I arrived with Darrell at noon with a bit of lunch for the students, then after lunch started my class. I taught a total of 24 hours on “Discipleship,” an in-depth course on the essentials of the Christian life, what it really means to follow Christ.
While our primary students were the thirteen enrolled in the four-year Bible College, people from our Baptist churches in the area were invited to audit the classes if they wanted. The previous three times I have taught in Monrovia there has been increasing interest each time. Sherry’s subject, however, attracted more interest than ever before because quite a few of our churches there have private schools, and it has been so many years since they have received any qualified training to help these schools. So we ended up with fifty students in her morning class, and thirty-five in my afternoon class!
Each Saturday was a free day, giving us time to grade papers and calculate grades, do laundry, catch up on emails, work on pictures we had taken on the trip, and study or write.
On Sundays we usually split up, with the Guenters delivering us to churches where we had been invited to serve that day. One Sunday morning, however, we all traveled thirty minutes together to a small church, about a year old, that the Guenters had been trying to encourage. Although we were on paved road to within a half-mile of the church, a continuing heavy rain made it almost impossible for us to get to the church by vehicle due to the deep mud-holes on the dirt road leading to the church. The option was to park the vehicle and slog through the mud on foot through the pouring rain, so we were all thankful the vehicle managed to make it through! Sherry taught the children’s SS class. I taught a combined adult SS class, then followed up by preaching from the very next verses for the morning service. The church prepared a delicious African meal of “rice and soup” for dinner. This broth-less “soup” was chopped collard greens intended to give flavor to the rice. Some of the greens were cooked with fish and some with chicken.
That happened to be the Sunday that, in the afternoon, Darrell drove us three hours to the conference site in Buchanan and got us settled in before returning to Monrovia the next morning because of other responsibilities. Two Liberian pastors accompanied me all week and stayed with me in my room in the guesthouse. Darrell came back on Friday morning to take us back to Monrovia.
At the Training Conference for FIBA (Faith Independent Baptist Association) Sherry taught a seminar titled “Teaching in the Church”, and I taught a seminar on “God’s Spectacular Church” from Acts 8-10. We each taught three hours a day Monday through Thursday, and two hours each on Friday, a total of fourteen hours each. Then I also preached at each evening service Monday through Thursday, a series of four messages. However, while all our teaching in the Bible College in Monrovia was done directly in English, in this conference we had to divide our teaching time with a translator. Many attendees were villagers without the same amount of English ability as in the Monrovia area, so everything was translated into the Bassa language.
When we got back to Monrovia on Friday evening, after nearly a week without any contact, I was glad to again have access to email and talk to Sallie by Skype. This was my 35th overseas PEP ministry trip but it was the first trip Sallie and I were both set up with Skype so we could talk together! As long as I was in the capital, she called me at 4 pm VA time – which was 8 pm Liberian time. It was so nice to hear her voice every day! But the internet in Monrovia was so slow we quickly discovered video calls wouldn’t work. Most days I could hear her fine, but my voice was weak and garbled the way she heard it. She said one day she heard maybe one syllable in four, and had to guess at what my subject was. That was frustrating until I learned how to use the SMS box to send an instant message to tell her what I was trying to say. But other days we could both hear each other well.
That last Saturday was another free day. Then after speaking twice more on Sunday morning, Darrell took us back to the airport for our flights home.
WHAT’S COMING UP?
Aug 19 am Immanuel Bible Ch, Springfield VA
Aug 19 pm Mt Carmel Reg Bapt Ch, Luray VA
Aug 22 am PEP presentation for seniors, Shenandoah Bapt Ch, Roanoke VA
Aug 26 First Bapt Ch, Prosperity SC
Aug 31 – Sep 11 PEP ministry trip to ISLAND #2
Sep 16 Available for meetings
Sept 23 am Bethesda Bapt Ch, Brownsburg IN
Sept 23 pm Granger Bapt Ch, Granger IN
Oct 3-23 PEP ministry trip to INDIA (with team-teacher Pastor Scott Williquette)
– with both our wives accompanying us
Oct 28 Missions Conf, West Cannon Bapt Ch, Belmont MI
Nov 4 am Grace Bapt Ch, Cambridge OH
Nov 7-11 Missions Conf, Shenandoah Bapt Ch, Roanoke VA
Nov 16 – Dec 3 PEP ministry trip to JAMAICA
Dec 9 Available for meetings
Dec 16 Granger Bapt Ch, Granger IN
PRAISE THE LORD WITH US
1. For the answer to prayer about the expenses for our PEP trip to INDIA Oct 3-23. We were able to buy our tickets in time!
2. For God’s blessing on Larry’s recent PEP ministry trip to LIBERIA. Statistics: 22 days in the country, 82 hours of speaking, 73 decisions of various kinds.
PRAY WITH US
1. For God’s blessing on Larry’s upcoming PEP ministry trip to ISLAND #2 Aug 31 – Sept 11.
2. For our meetings in US churches this fall, and for the scheduling of more meetings for 2013.
Larry and Sallie
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