May 2010 Furlough
We are grateful for your prayers for us as we prepared for furlough and your patience in waiting for news. We had good flights to the US, arriving in Los Angeles just before noon April 16. It's been good to be back with our family here in Southern California - though even as I write this I'm bundled up before the fire as we weather through a cold front from Alaska! April 20 at lunchtime it was 44F/7C with a chilling wind, quite the change from the tropical heat spell (90F/32C) we were having in FortalezaJ
Many of you have prayed with us concerning Lydia's housing situation during our furlough. In the end, she is staying in our apartment to care for it and our dog and cat. Nothing worked out as far as a roommate to stay with her, nor for a place for our pets, if she were to live elsewhere. The folk from our church have been very supportive as far as helping out with Lydia's needs while we are gone, for which we are very grateful. There is a great spirit of Christian love among the body there.
Please pray for Lydia as it is a lot of responsibility, but at the same time an opportunity to grow. She has much to keep her busy: her University studies, English classes she is teaching, worship team at church, and an on-line course in Teaching English as a Second Language.
If, after a time alone, it is not working out, Lydia has the option of moving to the apartment of a single lady from church, though the pets and care for the apartment would still be a problem, since our apartment contract goes until February of 2012. God has provided us a very good deal in a spacious apartment for a reasonable rent; however, we have need of $250 more in housing funds to meet the costs. Remember that we had an unusual blessing of renting the house of a fellow missionary for only $200 a month in our last place, thus the increased need. We also will need to raise additional funds for our contribution to ABWE's home office expenses.
Thank you also, for praying concerning the resolution of the details from the car accident Lynda was involved in three weeks before we left. Our car repairs were finally completed the Tuesday after we were in the US, so we're grateful to the friends who cared for that matter for us. Rejoice with us that God graciously provided several special gifts totaling $900 towards the costs of the repairs. We had the opportunity to reach out to the couple on the motorcycle -Cristiane and Paulo, by giving them each a CD of evangelistic music. We visited Cristiane, prayed and read from the Psalms with her. Please continue to pray for their salvation.
Rejoice with us in the Lord's blessings on SIBIMA this first semester of 2010! We have a record attendance of 128 students in the five different programs offered. Both Lydia (in the Saturday worship team class) and Andr (in the missions program) are a part of those numbers. The academic committee was very gracious in giving Jerry a sabbatical this semester to work on his thesis. Next semester they are counting on him teaching Theology of Missions and Pneumatology.
It is so very exciting to see how God is working through our Brazilian brethren involved in the mission, MMM. There have been a number of decisions for Christ through the Bible studies led by our missionary families living in Cape Verde: about 15 young people and 4 adults. They have made contact with a number of immigrants from Guinea Bissau, 11 are involved in a Bible study after their soccer game and five of these in individual studies. One of these men has already trusted Christ. The new single missionary, Eliane, will be moving to Cape Verde the end of May and the first family to go there, Pr. Isaias, will be coming back to Fortaleza on furlough.
Our furlough schedule: We will be in Washington state May through mid-June. Jerry is working hard to get his thesis finished and will need time working through it with his orientor. Please keep praying for him in wise use of his time and balancing responsibilities. Our weekends will be pretty busy as we seek to visit the churches that we have not visited since our last full furlough in 2004-2005. You can access our schedule on our website if you would like to follow our travels. To get a hold of us call our cell: 909-446-9005. God has provided a car for much of our travels through some dear friends, and housing through others.
Mid-June through mid-July we'll be in N. California. We'll be flying back to Pennsylvania July 19-24 for ABWE's Missionary Enrichment conference, then working our way back south. While in S. California, we're staying with our oldest son, Nathan, and family in their new home just 15 minutes from Lynda's parents. That has enabled us to help them out as well. A big concern on our heart is how to care for them as balancing their health needs and driving to multiple doctor appointments has become a burden for Lynda's mom. Please pray for wisdom as we try to decide what can be done and what we should do.
We have tickets to return to Fortaleza on August 12, arriving the next day. We'll need to gear up for a number of exciting happenings that will take place in the next three weeks after our arrival. SIBIMA's semester will already be started, so Jerry will hit the ground running. We'll host good friends Al & Kim Yoder, who will be coming to our city along with three others to teach two tracks of Biblical Counseling. Lynda and Kim will be involved in a ladies retreat. There are plans for the wedding of some good friends of ours as well.
We are grateful for your involvement in what God has been doing in Northeast Brazil, whether it be through your interest in reading our news and praying for us, in special gifts or regular support. We understand that times are hard, but we have seen God provide over and over again for our needs through His people and for this we rejoice and desire to give Him all the glory. Won't you lift up praise to Him with us for His gracious provision?
Grateful for the opportunity to serve Him,
Jerry, Lynda, and Lydia Neuman
US Cell: 909-446-9005
Stateside Address: Address in Brazil:
c/o Nathan Neuman R. Pereira de Miranda, 1155, Apt 304, Bl 2
1670 Lemon Ave. Papicu
Beaumont, CA 92223 60.175-045 Fortaleza, CE, Brasil