International Ministries

The Powerful Storm

September 7, 2011 Journal
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Dear Friends,

Greetings to you from the West family in Africa and the U.S.  What a summer!  Sarah, Charliese (our youngest daughter), and I came to the U.S. in July.  We enjoyed a July 4th family reunion in Louisiana with all of our children, “grands”, and my (Charles') mother.  On July 10th, we had a wonderful time (and I had the joy of officiating) at our middle son's wedding in Atlanta, Georgia.  We started August with travel to the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area to meet with staff and colleagues for training at our International Ministries Conference for Missionaries.

On August 6th, Sarah and Charles drove from St. Davids, Pennsylvania to Washington, DC to catch their flight to return to Zambia.  After visits with churches and mission group in the Philadelphia area, I am remaining in the U.S. to share our ministry and mission work with others until I return to the mission field on October 10th.

What timing!  An aftershock from the recent earthquake in Virginia shut down the airport as I was checking in to depart from the Philadelphia airport.  I am on the U.S East Coast, currently in the ABC New Hampshire and Vermont Region, and further visits are set for Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  Groups of our friends and mission-minded supporters are there.  And Hurricane Irene is there also!

To each of you, as part of our Missionary Partnership Network (MPN), we thank you for your ongoing financial support, which is crucial to carry out the ministry and mission work we feel God has called us to.   But we are grateful; not only for your faithful giving, but also for the prayer cover you give us as you continue to lift us up before God's throne.

As I monitor weather and news reports on the progress and path of Hurricane Irene, I have been in prayer and meditation for you and countless others, especially those up and down the East Coast who are in the path of danger or harm from this storm.  Please know that we pray for you, even as we ask your prayers for us.

Please continue to pray for us as we approach the upcoming Presidential election in Zambia.  Zambia has only had four presidents since its independence from British colonial rule in 1964:  President Mr. Kaunda, the late President Mr. Chiluba, the Late President Mr. Manawasa, and the current Acting-President Mr. Banda.  Mr. Banda is one of many candidates running for President in Zambia's September 20th election.

We just received the following "Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens” alert from the U.S. Embassy in Lusaka, Zambia:

August 26, 2011
Political Unrest - Downtown Lusaka
“The U.S. Embassy has received reports that political party cadres have engaged in violent clashes today in downtown Lusaka.  The Embassy's American Center at the COMESA building downtown has closed today. U.S. citizens are strongly urged to avoid the downtown area until the situation calms.    U.S. citizens in Zambia are reminded that there is a potential for violence leading up to and immediately following the elections on September 20, 2011."

There are many and various storms we may face, but none are more powerful than our God!  May God protect and keep you, and speak peace to your heart in the time of trouble.

In His Service,

Charles West

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