September 16, 2023
Hello Grace Vineyard and Friends of Grace!
I’m writing this email from Vista this week (not from Africa, like last week). Our little team of Traci Blagg, Alyssa Schoonmaker, and me, arrived in the U.S. on Wednesday morning after something like 30 hours of traveling! We spent about 2 weeks in Zambia. It’s a long way, and lots of time in airplanes, but so worth it to go! I think you like pictures, so I’ll share a few (and I’ll try not to get carried away with too many!).
Here’s some of the beautiful Breath of Heaven kids on the playground structure.
Here’s Alyssa with some of her new friends from Breath of Heaven
Here’s Traci with a couple more of these amazing orphans who are so full of joy and gratitude from Breath of Heaven.
Here’s Traci delivering the ultrasound machine that we brought with us to the Hope Medical Clinic. This machine will open up many new opportunities to serve the people of Lusaka.
Here’s Alyssa working with a young patient at Hope Medical Clinic. Alyssa finished her schooling and got her Physician’s Assistant License 3 days before we left, so her first patients as a P.A. were Zambians. How cool is that?!
Here’s Robert driving Katongo, Mika, and me to the airport for our flight to Ndola where I taught at the Vineyard School of Ministry. It was a really great blessing to be able to take Katongo – pastor of Breath of Heaven Worship Center and Village Father – and my son Mika with me.
This is me teaching at the School of Ministry. I think we had about 30 students, and they were very engaged. Our class times were filled with dynamic discussion of many issues involved in leading ministries (especially churches).
Here’s me with some of my now dear friends from the Ndola Vineyard. I met them last year when I spoke at the Zambia Vineyard National Conference, and we’ve stayed in touch this last year. After the conference last year, these guys became (using the national director’s language) an unstoppable brush fire. They together started a ministry to evangelize on college campuses, and it has been going really great this whole year. We had many special times of ministry together while I was in Ndola.
Hopefully that wasn’t too many pictures for an email!
Thank you for all your prayers and support. They all really want us to come back next year, and I hope we can do that with some more of you coming with us. Begin praying to see if you feel a nudge to go to Africa with me in 2024!
Ohst Family Update
Most of you know by now that while I was in Zambia, my dad had a heart attack and entered heaven. Here’s a photo of him last November on his 90th birthday, pictured here with some of his grandchildren who helped him blow out 90 candles. He was the kindest man of I’ve ever met and an inspiration to many people. He had a great sense of humor and was always ready to serve people. It was his tendency to work with all his strength that probably is what triggered this final heart attack. He finished his race with grace and peace. His last words were “I love you,” to his wife of 32 years as he tenderly squeezed her hand in their final goodbye. Minutes later he was with the Lord.
We just want to say thank you to all who have been showing your love to us with cards and flowers and food and prayers. At times like these, the body of Christ really shines! I so love being in our Grace Vineyard family with you. Your support is carrying us well. Kim and I are spending a lot of time caring for mom in dad’s place. Her current state makes it unsafe for her to be alone. In the next month or two she’ll be moving to live with her daughter in Colorado.
Christian Twombly This Sunday!
With all that’s required of me in dealing with my dad’s death and being the executor for his estate, I knew I wouldn’t have enough time and energy to preach this Sunday, so I asked Christian Twombly to bring the message. His title is “Know Your Part”. Sometimes we cast ourselves in a role that we were never intended to be in. Who are we and what is the part we are meant to be in? Christian will take a look at what the Bible has to say about these questions and more. It should be a very encouraging and inspiring morning!
Daughters of Destiny Women’s Retreat
We’ll be hosting our Daughters of Destiny Women’s Retreat at Pine Valley October 20-22. Our Speaker is Dianne Leman and I’m very excited to see what the Lord will be depositing in our ladies through her teaching. She co-pastored a Vineyard church with her husband for over 40 years and has been a part of the Vineyard USA executive team. The cost will be $230 for private bath lodge rooms, $210 for shared bath lodge rooms and $180 for dorm rooms. If you pay online www.gracevcf.org or in person, please note that it’s for the women’s retreat. Please email email@example.com or text Kim Ohst at 760.519.4558 to let her know what type of room you are reserving. We have limited availability.
Tuesday Night Women’s Holy Spirit Study
Beginning Tuesday, September 26th 6:30-8:30 pm at Daria and Brandi’s house (3248 Roberta Lane, Oceanside), Debby Gidley will be leading this 6 session video study titled “When God’s Spirit Moves”. There will be a sign up in the lobby. Contact Debby for more info: 760.637.9286
Monday Night Chosen Season 2 Zoom Study
Robin Spillman will be leading this study Monday nights 6:45-8:30pm as we watch the Chosen Season 2 together and discuss it via Zoom. Please email me firstname.lastname@example.org or sign up in the church lobby if you plan to attend. Study begins September 18th. For more information, contact Robin at 760.583.3677.
And with that I’ll close this week’s update. I hope you can all join us at Grace Vineyard at 9:30am tomorrow morning. If you can’t be there in person, you can join us online with Zoom using this info: Zoom Meeting ID 153 112 432, Passcode 684814. You may also join us on Facebook Live at facebook.com/gracevcf.
Blessings and love to each of you,
Tithes and Offerings Online
THANKS for taking ownership in the life and ministry of Grace Vineyard! And thanks to all of you who are stepping into a lifestyle of generosity with your tithes and offerings. It really does take all of us doing our part with the income God has entrusted to us for His church. If you’d like to give your tithe or offering online, click the donate button below.