Liberia Dream, From Grace Lutheran
Like Cold Water to a Thirsty Soul is Good News from a Far Country
There are many ways of doing outreach in the world. One method that has been on the increase among Christians is by a congregation initiating work. In the CLC this has been happening also. Here is a report on such from Pastor Hein. His new member Alvin wrote, “Just two years after becoming a full fledged member of Grace Lutheran/CLC USA, thoughts are now directed at my Natal, Liberia where by God’s Grace, Grace would be expanded.” Read the report and let the joy well up. You can also see a You Tube presentation.
In March of 2010, Alvin Jask made contact with Grace Lutheran Church in Fridley, MN. He received instruction in God’s Word, became a baptized child of God, and in August he professed his Christian faith and his agreement with the teachings found in God’s holy Word. He has had a fervent desire since that time to share the Good News of his Savior, Jesus Christ, with the people in his homeland of Liberia. He believes that the fields of God’s harvest are white and plentiful for the Holy Spirit to do His work. While he has lived in the United States for the past few years, this past summer Alvin returned to Liberia for a visit there. Grace had collected items for various needs that Alvin had identified for some of his people back home. Some of these included items that he desired to collect for children to use in his dream of having a Christian Day School. These items were shipped in barrels to Liberia. But Alvin personally flew to Liberia in order to ensure that the contents of the barrels arrived to the people and location he intended. The people there were immensely grateful for these gifts of love. Alvin currently owns a four acre tract of property in the remote but developing area of Bopolu, Liberia. He has already started construction of a building in which to house his dream of having a Christian Day School there. He believes the area is well-suited for this since many young couples live in poverty there and end up with many children. Most of the major construction of the building is already complete. Details on the inside of the building are yet to be finished, things like painting, floors, and bathrooms. In addition landscaping is being completed in order build a working relationship with the local government. By having his current property in good order and keeping it well-maintained, Alvin believes that he will be able to add to it as the local government owns six acres of property adjacent to his and they often grant more property to good owners as a way to encourage further development. Brush is being cleared and palm trees are being planted in order to mark his current property lines. Alvin plans to make other trips to Liberia in order to monitor progress on the building and to prevent people from taking financial advantage of his resources. He currently has invested about $15,000 of his own money in this project. The next step is to train his niece, Naomi, to be a Christian Day School teacher. Naomi is handicapped, having her leg recently amputated due to illness. It is Alvin’s hope that she can fly to the United States and learn about the daily operation of a school from our Christian Day School staff at Grace. She would also receive instruction from Pastor Hein during this time. With the instruction and tools she would receive, she would then return to Liberia to teach at the school. Alvin plans on starting with a limited number of younger grades and then adding grades as the school gets more and more established. Alvin has a number of connections in the capital city of Monrovia. He had formerly served as a public spokesperson for the Liberian police. He is friends with the current president of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and has many other political and business acquaintances who have helped him with some of his goals to improve conditions in Liberia. Alvin has very limited eyesight and is considered legally blind, having lost much of his eyesight during the turmoil of civil war. He is highly motivated to provide help to others with limited eyesight and other limiting handicap situations. He has been working at Apple in the Twin Cities, and has established strong ties there with his work ethic and his ability to help others learn how technology can help them. Alvin is using his abilities to set up a computer business in Liberia and to help train those who have limited eyesight. In addition, he is working with the government and universities in Liberia to see what programs can be put in place to help blind people like himself, programs like those he personally utilized in the United States to get stability in his life and to be able to become more independent with his daily living. This work, too, has been having an impact on his mission opportunities in Liberia.
During his recent trip to Liberia, Alvin took some video in which he shares his dream of having a Christian Day School there:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCfICoQqUQM&feature=youtube_gdata_player
Praise the Lord.