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This is one of our most special newsletters ever, because after several years of difficulty and reduced activity here at the mission due to lack of staff, we now have all of our regular ministry programs active on a weekly basis again. Everyone is excited to have the regular adult services, Sunday School classes, Bible studies going strong, along with the other teams coming in and working with the youth.
A very special report is concerning our gravestone project. We ordered the three gravestones for our boys graves a couple years ago, and the company we ordered from delayed delivery until now, and we were able to get them set up in the graveyard before the ground froze. After this was done, I experienced a special sense of peace, in that whatever reason there was such a long and terrible spiritual battle over this, it is finally won and God has given a wonderful sense of blessing in the little mission graveyard. After all these years of wanting to see this done, it is such a blessing to see how nice it looks, and the sense of how God will use this as a witness in the years to come of his unforgetable, wonderful works. Several pictures of them are featured below.
This summer, the Hoover family from Edmonton moved into the apartment above the chapel, and with their help we have been able to get all the mission programs running full time, including our adult services, Sunday School, Bible studies, etc. Then, the Arey family, who are originally from Aklavik, Northwest Territories, also moved into the church, and for a while we had two families living in the church. Then the Hoover's moved into a larger home, two miles from here and the Arey's are now living in the church apartment. Our mission is the only Christian ministry operating on the Sunchild and O'Chiese Reserves, and the only ministry able to bring in Christian workers to live and minister here. That is why it has been so important to keep the doors open and the ministry operating through these last several difficult years. Without the mission, the only Christian light would go out. In the times when we have been needed to assist in difficulties here, I have been told this by the people here.
The wonderful Korean group of Churches from Calgary held our summer VBS Bible camp in July. Below are pictures showing much of their ministry. Every evening, for several hours, the team holds a devotional time of each one sharing, and of prayer. This is a very special time, especially for me, with the depth and intensity and emotion everyone puts into it. Because of their prayer and spiritual depth and devotion, every aspect of their ministry is blessed with wonderful effect and annointing. For me the highlight of the week was the testimony of one of the team members who is originally from Nepal. When Marla shared her testimony, she told about her family life growing up, which was complicated by the extreme physical handicap of both of her parents. I can truly say I had never heard such a touching story, and it was the first time she had shared this with the other team members also. It's times like this I feel so priviledged to be able to partake of the ministry and fellowship of many of God's most devoted people from around the world. The Korean team also comes to the Reserve and does follow up youth events here at the mission as often as they can, and the pastor of one of the Korean churches brings his family to visit and fellowship as often as he can also.
Another example of this, was the surprise visit of a group of Believers from Suriname, South America. How they ever ended up here in this remote Reserve is truly a miracle. They are from an extremely remote Amazon jungle tribe called the Wayana. These people live a subsistance life style with no form of money. They have no alcohol, no drugs, or any of the social problems relating to these curses. No schools or stores or jails. They have had the Gospel for about 25 years and run their own church now. In spite of how remote they are, they have a strong burden to reach out to other Indian tribes, even into Canada, and tell them that Indians can be Christians....that Christianity is not just for the White people! And that is what they did when they came to Sunchild! We visited homes, where they shared their testimonies with as many as could be reached in the time they were here. This was just an incredible experience. I can't explain how important and powerful this testimony was to the people here. I had never imagined God would do such a thing for us, as to send us such a special group of Indian people!
I have had to utilize a SSl security encryption certificate on this website, to bring it up to date so it will meet the requirements of the servers and browsers. You may have experienced, in the last year or so, that without the encryption certificate the website would be blocked by your browser, because it is now virtually a requirement if you want your website to be accepted by the security requirements that most browsers have in place now. I wasn't aware of this since this site is just for information only and not for commercial dealings. But nonetheless, browers make no distinction anymore, and refuse to work without SSL. So now this will enable our website to function effectively in the modern technical requirements of today's world. The website address has changed to the secure https link, so the address is now https://arcticoutreach.org.
In our last letter we reported on both furnaces and the water heater in the church not working. I was able to get the water heater working by replacing a vapor safety switch. The problem with the furnaces was a voltage surge took out both control boards, and I was able to replace them so both furnaces are working now. Two furnace men were unable to figure this out, so it is a special answer to prayer.
We are blessed with having two Christian school teachers, one each from Sunchild and O'Chiese attending our adult service on Sunday. They have a crucial place in the lives of the school kids, and it is a heavy burden for them to carry, so they need our prayers. There is an epidemic of suicides on the Native Reserves of astounding proportions. Recently a 10 year old girl took her life on a nearby Reserve. The holiday season is always a time of great suffering here, and it is overwhelming for me as I get called in to help families with the trauma and suffering of the events that happen.
Therefore, it is so important to see God working and answering prayer, or it would just be impossible to carry on. The mission was able to conduct a special ladies retreat this summer which was run by Karen and the Hoover ladies. They were very happy with it's success, and I have a report on this at the end of the pictures on page 4.
I still have a lot of work to do on posting new videos of our news events. This is time consuming work, so I will be working on it here in early December, and if they aren't posted in this letter when you access it, please check back to view them, because it is just like being here to see the videos. God Bless and please keep us in your prayers because the battle is heavy and without prayer support we get run over and it is very difficult.....Rodger Rinker
There are four pages to this letter with many pictures. I have divided it into 4 pages so they will load faster. So you have to follow the links at the bottom to access all 4 pages.
This is a picture of the Korean team that was here last week, posing for a picture in the graveyard.
This is from a different angle, and with me in it.
This is a closeup of Seth's gravestone.
This is a close up of Jesse's gravestone.
This is a close up of baby James gravestone.
This is the team from Suriname, South America, that I wrote about in the news above. The chief of the tribe is Chief Ipomadi in the red shirt, with his wife Melisa. Beside them is Janak with his wife Eleme, and in the back are the missionaries, Marco and Marjolein from the Netherlands.
This is a recent Sunday morning service this month. With the help we have now, we are able to get all of the scheduled services and Bible studies, etc., that we are used to having back on track. Attendance represents both the O'Chiese and Sunchild Reserves. Following the adult service we have Sunday School classes for the youth.
The Arey family are living in the church apartment now. This is Darrel and his two children, Judah and Natanya. His wife Donna is not in this picture. The Arey's are originally from the village of Aklavik, in the Northwest Territories in the Arctic, not far from Old Crow and Fort McPherson.