Alise and Mark Juanes will serve at the House of Love and House of Blessing in Chiang Mai, Thailand. These ministries were established by IM missionary Kim Brown to serve tribal women and children coping with problems caused by AIDS, disabilities and migration from their rural villages to urban slums. Working through longtime IM partners Integrated Ministries for the Ethnic Minorities Foundation and the Thailand Karen Baptist Convention, Alise and Mark’s ministry will focus on the discipleship and spiritual development of children and staff, administrative responsibilities and community development.
They write – When we were first endorsed by IM last year, we went through a Bible study on the book of Philippians with a focus on the relationship between Paul and the church at Philippi. Paul lays out that a missionary’s relationship with the church has a subtle but important distinction: it is about “partnership with” rather than “support of.” We have very much taken that concept to heart as we have been meeting with churches and individuals these past two years. We want all of you to be with us on this journey: we are the ones physically moving to Thailand but all of you who are praying, financially giving, and staying connected are partnering in what God is doing in Thailand.
At our home church, Crosswalk Community Church in Sunnyvale, the mission statement is “Connecting People to Jesus and to Each Other” and that statement seems to perfectly encapsulate a large part of how we see our role in Thailand. In Thailand, through discipleship and spiritual formation, people are connected to Jesus and become more like Him. Through several different forms of communication, people get connected with each other across the globe. During the days of the early church, the Roman system of roads helped Paul and other missionaries communicate more effectively with churches. Today we have the internet and the many forms of communication it allows: websites, e-mails, videos, etc.
One piece of feedback we have received quite often is that people want to hear back from Global Servants and stay connected. Looking back at Philippians 4:15, Paul says that partnership is giving and receiving. This is why communication is so important. Moving to Thailand is just a piece of partnership with all of you; sharing what God is doing so everyone can stay engaged is essential to the overall health of the ministry. …
We have been on the road a lot these past few months. … It has been great to experience so many different aspects and parts of America.
Last week we returned home from a trip through Northern California and Oregon where we connected with several churches, individuals, and even former Global Servants to Thailand. This past Sunday we spoke at a Iu Mien church. The Iu-Mien is a Hilltribe in Asia and many of the people at the church have lived in, or have family members in, Thailand. Every time we showed a picture of a Hilltribe person from our trip, we would see many smiles and hear “Akha!” or “Lahu!” After we spoke we were asked to kneel and the pastoral team and board members laid hands on us and prayed. Connecting with new churches and people has definitely been one of the best parts of these first two years of global service with IM.
Read their full journal at https://internationalministries.org/connecting-people/