Holiday Happenings

Awana Wrap-Up  With  the school year coming to an end in December, our first year of Awana also came to a close.  Many many thanks to Crown Valley Community Church in Acton, California!! Their summer Vacation Bible School raised funds for us and we were able to give each Awana participant a backpack filled with school supplies for the upcoming new school year which begins mid-January.

Getting ready to deliver the surprise backpacks to the Awana children

Getting ready to deliver the surprise backpacks to the Awana children

With their new backpacks, the Awana kids are ready for the new school year!

With their new backpacks, the Awana kids are ready for the new school year!

The children worked diligently to  memorize scripture and Gospel truths, earning their Awana bucks for the end-of–the–year Awana Store.  We are confident that as the children take in God’s Word, our faithful Lord will cause the spiritual growth in their lives from the seeds that are planted- all for their good and His glory.  Please pray for us as we will gear up for Year Two of Awana at the end of January!

Ready for Awana Store!

Ready for Awana Store!

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One last Awana Games!

Andre and Randy for one last Awana Game!

We are so thankful for our Awana volunteer crew who showed up week after week to share the Gospel with the kids of Sunnyside Primary!!

We are so thankful for our Awana volunteer crew who showed up week after week to share the Gospel with the kids of Sunnyside Primary!!

Thanksgiving  In Christ there is always so much for which to give thanks and one of the things we are grateful for is that we had the blessing of celebrating our beloved American holiday even though we are on the other side of the world.  Turkey is a bit difficult to hunt down, and the one we were able to acquire was more like a large chicken than the 15+ pound variety we are accustom to, but with all the other traditional fixings we had our fill of feasting and fellowship with our church family.

Thanksgiving Celebration!

Thanksgiving Celebration!

Church Facility Since its beginnings, Living Hope Church has had a prayer and passion to reach the densely populated area of Sunnyside, Pretoria for the cause of Christ.  Many of our church members originate from several of the surrounding African nations including: Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi. Living Hope is a church “on mission” and has a goal to train and equip its members to take the gospel wherever the Lord may lead including back to their home countries for the purpose of spreading the transforming power of the gospel for Africa. God is causing this goal to quickly become realized through Mission Malawi as we stand with Pastor Newton as he makes preparations to move his family back to Malawi early next year.

From Living Hope Church’s website:

“God is on a mission and every member of His family is a missionary.  We want to pursue growth the early church way, primarily through people becoming believers.  Specifically we want to follow a multi-faceted approach to evangelism: building relationships, sharing the gospel, demonstrating the transforming power of the gospel in our everyday lives and introducing people to the church community.”

The church began humbly as a Bible Study in a small flat.  As God graciously granted growth, the church then moved to Pastor Josh and Marda Mack’s home.  To be centrally located and close to the members of the church, the church then moved to meeting under a tent for a year and finally, for the last three years to its present location.  We rent a room on a Sunday afternoon for two hours from a Lutheran church/seminary, and although we have been thankful for this facility, it has not been ideal for several reasons:

  • Meeting time is currently 1:30-3:00.  For many reasons, the afternoon is not the most favorable time for a church service.
  • The distance from Sunnyside. Our current location is just outside the area that many of our church members live. Many of them walk to church and take up to one hour get there.
  • We are renting one room for two hours on a Sunday with no real possibility for a Children’s Ministry or a place for mother’s to enjoy the service without their young babies becoming a distraction to the service.  Currently, both of these ministries take place out doors.
    Sunday School!
    Sunday School!
    Currently LHC's "Mother's Room" is outdoors on blankets where the mommies try to listen to the sermon through an outdoor speakers.

    Currently LHC’s “Mother’s Room” is outdoors on blankets where the mommies try to listen to the sermon through an outdoor speakers.

Mama and baby out on the grass listening to the sermon.

Mama and baby out on the grass listening to the sermon.

For four years since Living Hope Church began, we have prayed and then have also asked others to pray for a facility that would meet the goals of the church and the needs of our church family.  Recently, we have consider various options from purchasing a home that could be converted to a church building to purchasing an entire flat building to serve a variety of ministry opportunities.  Even more recently, the entire floor of retail/office complex became available for rent right in the heart of Sunnyside.  We are quite excited about this possibility, but because this location is so ideal,  it is also in very high demand.  We are praying for God’s will and provision…

As we continue to pursue options for a church building, we asks that you would please join us.  Please pray for God’s wisdom and direction concerning the future of Living Hope Church.

Additions to the Clark Family!  No–it is not what you may be thinking…For three weeks during the holiday season, the Muphamuzi Baby Home will be closed in order to give the caregivers extended time with their families and to take care of needed renovations. So for those three weeks, this sweet baby girl has joined our family!  Please pray for this adorable, precious little one.  That God would graciously provide a family for her that and loves her points her to Christ.  For now, we are blessed to care for this holiday season!

Our sweet little one for the next three weeks!

Our sweet little one for the next three weeks!

And our other addition, Sam, the mini-schnauzer.  So fun!!  Needless to say, our house is quite lively at the moment!

Sam - the newest Clark!

Sam – the newest Clark!

As another Christmas quickly approaches, it is our prayer for us and you that we will NEVER grow tired of this season’s glorious message –  Immanuel  – God came to be with us to do what we could not do for ourselves:  Save us from ourselves and from sin and death that we may have eternal hope and peace in Him.  May this truth now and in the new year cause joy to abundantly overflow and drive you into a deeper love and worship for King Jesus!

“…come and behold Him, borne the King of angels.

O, come let us adore Him

O, come let us adore Him,

O, come let us adore Him,

Christ, the Lord! “

May you have a blessed Christmas and joy-filled New Year!  We love you and are thankful for you!

May you have a blessed Christmas and joy-filled New Year! We love you and are thankful for you!

4 thoughts on “Holiday Happenings

  1. Your words, stories, and photos make me smile. Thank you Clarks, for your diligence in serving our Lord …. and keeping up your blog! Our Love to you all, Tanya and the Champagne Crew
    Holy is The Lord God Almighty!

  2. Clarks,

    Thanks for the update, I love hearing how God is working in your lives!
    I commit to pray for the ideal (In God’s eyes) location for the Church.

    Love you guys,

    Matt and Marie Doan

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