1for1 how building partnerships built permanent homes for the llanos family, patricia, the ‘angels’ & more compassion | pages 8/9 aftermath a lifestyle after the storm, then after the relief efforts — what’s next? 2014 mission trip | page 7 why ﬂy around the world when there are so many needs here? serving globally | page 5 montana on a mission’s 2014 annual report livinghope volume 1, issue 1 2014 volume 1, issue 12014
january 2014 mission trip
a mission to listen, learn our vision statement: montana on a mission (mom) exists to encourage people to live out the love of jesus christ by coming alongside impoverished or marginalized people aroundtheworldtoimprove their physical condition and ultimately impact their spiritual lives. we believe in creating and supporting a lifestyle of service that has the momentum to create ripple effect in our homes, churches, community, state, nation and world! a few months ago my term as chairman of montana on a mission came to an end. i have cherished those people that i have come in contact with; from the board members that i have served along- side to donors who have so graciously contributed to the programs that mom has sponsored but perhaps most of all, those who we have had the privilege of serving during my tenure. my time with mom has brought about changes to the way i live and the way i think about people outside my own economic strata. along the trail, i have met some amazing individuals and communities who have enriched my life incredibly. for example, i realize that the amount of faith required to live hand-to- mouth, without 401k’s, without savings accounts, even without knowing where tomorrow’s food will come from, makes my faith appear as a wisp of smoke. i am reading a book commissioned by the world bank in 2000. the book “voic- es of the poor,” is revolutionary in that it is the first of its kind to interview, on a wide scale, people who are materially poor. the authors interviewed more than 60,000 people from ukraine to africa, from south america to asia. although many studies have been implemented quantifying the economic and political statistics of poverty, few have investigat- ed the psychological stress and emotion- al anxiety that the poor experience. a general theme emerged from the in- terviews that is best expressed by a poor woman in moldova in eastern europe who made this statement: “poverty is pain; it feels like a disease. it attacks a person not only materially but also mor- ally. it eats away one’s dignity and drives one into total despair.” poverty alleviation efforts often focus on the deficiencies of assets and income of poor people. subsequently, remedia- tion of such deficits involves the giving of funds and materials to those in need: acts of charity. however, acts of charity, if practiced without recognizing that the recipient’s self-worth is already com- promised is likely to further violate their dignity; charity becomes toxic. to say that we have not made mistakes in this area would be less than honest. however, one of the things that i find most encouraging about montana on a mission is that, rather than acting on impulse, we are becoming more adept at listening to the “voices of the poor.” i pray that we continue to listen. tom lutke “poverty is pain; it feels like a disease. it attacks a person not only materially but also morally. it eats away one’s dignity and drives one into total despair.” — voices of the poor
all donations to montana on a mission are tax deductible as a 501(c)3. office expenses: $1,731... only 2.3%! office expenses include wire transfer fees, tax fees, credit card fees, advertising & shipping expenses. in the philippines: what your generosity did in 2014: the tiny island of bohol, philippines has been a montana on a mission focus since its inception in 1996. that long-standing history in the area allowed mom to respond swiftly and effectively when the incredible earthquake hit in late 2013. in 2014, mom funds provided: $28,322 = provided shelter & homes for 104 families after the earthquake $8,351 = provided college or trade education for 15 secondary scholars $5,700 = provided wheelchairs, hearing aids, medical attention and more under “compassion,” leyte church assistance & mission support $4,500 = fed 40 malnourished children a healthy lunch every school day $1,000 = purchased toothpaste, toothbrushes, bandages and other basic medical supplies for the november 2014 health clinic. in india: montana on a mission has been working with pastor samuel karuninithi since 2006 to part- ner with his living word church in bridge city, texas to support missionary work in india. this partnership arose after pastor samuel’s texas church was destroyed by hurricane katrina. a mom team helped rebuild their church, and a lasting friendship began. in 2014, mom funds provided these resources to india mission outreach: $4,572 = madurai pastor support, provides a small stipend per month and professional growth for around 40 pastors. $1,949 = madurai orphanage support. donations received in 2014: $75,815 | gifts distributed in 2014: $57,625 ready to distribute at the start of 2015 to complete projects began in 2014: $18,510.
why do we ﬂy? that’s a question mom supporters often ask. indeed, there are an overwhelming number of needs all around -- people in our own communities, states, nation -- who are hungry, hurting or in need of a little more love. shouldn’t we focus more at home? we say ‘yes’ to all of the above. encouraging a lifestyle of service has a ripple effect, and sometimes it takes a big splash to get started. time and again, we see individuals whose hearts are broken to the plight of strangers around the globe become intensely more sensitive to the needs around them on a daily basis. this story is just one example of that transformation. giving and serving around the world is just a start... or for some, it’s the culmination of a lifetime of this style of living. wherever you are in your service journey, mom wants to be there to help encourage you to share the love. there are so many needs in our own backyard... why go around the world? this story veers from the philippine focus to a “rabbit trail” in montana. my husband, tom and i have experi- enced several team mission trips to bohol, philippines representing mon- tana on a mission. these were times of some fear, excitement, relaxation and definitely faith-building. our desire was to be the love of god in tangible ways to people less fortunate than we are in the united states. we came away from these times with new friendships and perspectives we never could have imagined! we enjoyed helping with improvements to homes, schools, safer water, sharing and worshiping god together with the filipinos. we would return to montana exhausted but exhilarated. now what, lord? you have given us the privilege of step- ping out of our comfortable lives and coming alongside people from another culture in a third world country. you have opened our eyes and changed our hearts through these experiences. we really felt an emptiness inside and began asking god for an opportunity to become involved in something similar right here in our own area. there must be something in montana, lord. people have needs right here as well as across the ocean in the philippines. in 2008, we stopped for gas in lame deer, mont., on the northern cheyenne reservation. getting out of the car, so much of the town reminded us of the poverty and struggles of the people we had seen in the philippines. same sce- nario….but right here in montana within driving distance of our own home. about six months later, we learned of a non-profit organization going to the northern cheyenne reservation in southeast montana to help with small, home improvement projects. we were excited and signed up quickly to join in this effort. it was an awesome experi- ence involving more than 400 youth from across the united states, youth group leaders and chaperones. we ate and slept at the st. labre mission in ash- land, mont. the group painted houses, built decks and wheelchair ramps. all the while, our organizations’ hope was to reflect and share the love of god with those we were helping. again, we returned home grateful and tired. we had experienced some of the native american culture; a group of people right here in montana who god loves also. much prayer continued for people on the reservation. could they be helped more, lord? we discovered the leaders of various churches/denominations on the reser- vation were organized as the northern cheyenne ministerial association. we contacted them and a relationship soon began that circled around the need for a community thrift store. to make a long story short, the every- thing beautiful thrift store has been in operation since may of 2012 and has been supported very well by the local communities on the reservation. it is located in a small building in lame deer. the manager is a northern cheyenne woman who relies on volunteer help. the ncma have purchased property and plan to build a larger building eventually. we thank god for using our involve- ment with montana on a mission as a springboard to allow us to participate in a vision that became a reality for the people on the northern cheyenne reservation of montana. let’s keep our eyes open for “rabbit trails.” —deb lutke
january: in january, a mission team of 17 montanans traveled to bo- hol for a 10-day journey of building -- building homes, build- ing relationships, building faith. the team set up a house pro- duction center in the loboc community center to teach and learn with filipino workers and create a template that would allow more than 100 homes to be quickly and efficiently built and erected in the communities after the devastating octo- ber 2013 earthquake. with new tools donated by mom sup- porters and templates built by volunteers, the production center was building up to five homes each day! with the tools and template in place, building continued on the 100 homes through the month of february. livelihoods were also destroyed in the earthquake, and providing employment helped many families in need with consistant work. erick’s family was the recipient of one of the completed houses during the january mission trip. he volunteered to jump right in and help the work crew on not only his house, but others in the barrio as well. here, he’s using a machete to smooth the bamboo that will be laid for his family’s flooring. erick began work as a full-time member of the crew after volunteering in his own community. he had been out of work since the earthquake, and this was an opportunity for him to support his family and help those around him. the big timber evangelical church experienced a little bit of the philippines march 26 for the open house and celebration of the completion of mom’s 100 homes for 100 families campaign! we shared the sights, sounds and tastes of the philippines with more than 150 guests and shared the stories of how your gifts directly and powerfully impact those in need. montana on a mission’s year in review | a look back through 2014 february: the work continues to rebuild bohol march: 100 homes. 100 families. 100 reasons to celebrate. (a thank you to our community)
• filipino home building 101• tools & materials •new pneumatic tools to speed production• •raw, native coconut wood• •amakan - woven bamboo matting• •strips of bamboo for flooring and paneling• assembly at loboc gym 1) raw coconut wood delivery 2) allow coconut wood to “cure” for at least one week 3) cut good boards to size 4) arrange framing in jigs 5) cover frame with amakan 6) secure with bamboo 7) frame truss & windows 8) stack in complete house kits, ready for delivery! delivery time six wall panels + three truss frames + four window frames + two doors + one roll of bamboo + corrugated tin roofing + support beams + perlins + floor framing = one home helping in a time of great need we were already planning a trip to the philippines when an earthquake changed the focus of our trip. bohol experienced a massive earthquake on the morning of october 15. since then thousands of aftershocks have continued to shake things up. more than 15,000 homes were totally destroyed and another 73,000 structures were damaged in the earthquake. at least 2 of our team members will head to sagbayan, the epicenter location, on monday. as the philippines worked to recover from the earthquake, typhoon haiyan hit the philippines on nov. 8 devastat- ing another huge swath of the country. 6,200 dead have been found and more than 1,000 are still missing. a majority of the damage is to leyte and the surround- ing areas. we have some connections to leyte and are working on getting over some of our team members there some- time next week. there are 17 of us on this particular trip and i can already tell its been rewarding for us to be here. seeing the work in real time and meeting the people does some- thing to a person. there is something about shaking hands with people who have lost their home that changes you. a few of our team members shared how rewarding it was working with one par- ticular family whose home was affected by the earthquake. our team was able to lay the home, which had been on stilts, onto the ground and for the first time in three months the family slept in their home. in the next few days the fam- ily will receive a transitional home and possibly the material to fix their existing home. they are elated to say the least. none of this would be possible of course without the help of hundreds and hundreds of donors back home. since, october tens of thousands of dollars were raised making it possible for us to build 100 transitional homes and help thousands of people. unfortunately, most giving dries up within 60 days of a disaster and yet the need here is going to last years. we would like to build 1,000 homes, a drop in a bucket compared to the 15,000 homes that were destroyed. this doesn’t even count the 70,000 homes destroyed by typhoon haiyan. the only way we can help is with thou- sands of donors praying and giving what might seem like small gifts. this is obviously a god sized project. there is no way our small nonprofit can generate the funds and energy to help when the needs are so tremendous. but god can. please continue to pray for the philip- pines and for the work we are doing. also consider getting involved by pray- ing, giving funds, and possibly even join- ing a work team. god bless, pastor bryan baker (blog posted jan. 11, 2014, at www.montanaonamission.org)
marife’s story school lunch program leads to compassion outreach love in 2012, a missions team was introduced to the young women we now know and love as “the angels” — analyn and angelyn. these sweet girls have severe cerebral palsy; their physical condition had left them confined to the floor of their home for most of their 20 years, often alone while their mother and father work to support them and their siblings. our hearts broke for them, and our family of supporters responded. less than a year later, analyn and angelyn were lifted into new, custom- built wheelchairs. these simple tools became material means to mobility, freedom and a new life. that initial visit to balilihan led down many more muddy filipino roads, introducing us to others with physical ailments who have been ministered to with wheelchairs and when appropriate, homes, to enhance their physical living conditions. compassion projects but whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of god abide in him? little chil- dren, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth. 1 john 3:17-18 on the last day of a two week mission trip to the philippines this fall, a school lunch sponsor took a bag of rice to young pricela’s house. after hearing her sister was ill, we asked about her health. pricela took us to check on marife. we were shocked to find marife laying on the floor, a limp, emaciated 15-year-old girl, her legs covered in dark spots. we returned to the house with just enough time to pack the last of our things and say goodbye before leaving for the airport. the images of marife and her family played through our minds during the two days of travel. we prayed about the situation and decided to do whatever we could to help. marife was taken to see a doctor thanks to mom manager laarni. there she was diagnosed with systemic lupus ery- thematosus (sle) and given a prescription for an antibiotic. the prescription was never filled because the family couldn’t afford the $8 that the pills would cost. several expensive hospital stays, blood transfusions and doctor visits later, she is finally on a path to recovery! families who live in poverty have few choices when it comes to healthcare. by the grace of god, mom became aware of this situ- ation and has generous donors who are committed to meeting this need for marife. very often there is no medical care or it comes too little too late, as families are forced to choose between their immediate needs and seeing a doctor. marife’s entire hospital stay (12 days) including medications, food, supplies and daily trans- portation for her family totaled only a little over $800! there are so many people in need, just think of the amazing things that can be done when we make even small financial gifts! on the cover: michelle, age 15, with her mother merly and fcf youth group member monette, in her first wheelchair, specially designed to fit her needs and grant mobility.
april: siblings move in to their new home in balilihan the three adult, disabled siblings; victor, essencio and urbana, whom we met in 2013, moved in to their new home, which was built by mom along with a seattle organization, “one for one.” one for one offers real estate clients the opportunity to build a house in the philippines as they are building new construction in the seattle area. “god did wonderful and amaz- ing things all throughout the ﬁve-day camp. i met new friends who are believers in christ and i met new pastors... we were all blessed and revived and would like to attend next year if given the opportunity.” “i’m so thankful that i have join the youth camp. and now i’m trying my best to be a good example to the other youth, and now i am encourage to read the bible every day. i really thank god and all the moral support and all the prayers.” —marlon “to those who are supporting us, i pray that you will continue your generosity because your help is not in vain.” —jayann thanks so much faithful mom supporters! you are making a huge difference in the futures of these amazing kids! may:in may mom sponsored about 20 youth from the loboc, bohol area, including many of our own “fcfl linkers” youth group, to a christian youth camp in ubay. the camp theme was “focus jesus.” each letter of the word focus stands for faith, obedience and commitment will unite us to serve jesus. here’s what some of the youth had to say about their experience:
while students here in the u.s. are eagerly looking forward to summer break, children on the other side of the world are gearing up to start the new school year. mom’s school lunch program at calunasan sur elementary is in the start of its third year. it has seen a wonderful amount of support and is continuing to improve and grow! the parents of the enrolled students must agree to help with the preparation, cooking and cleanup of the meal, as well as bringing firewood for the cooking fire. after a few months on the program teachers reportedthatthesestudentsweremoreattentive, engaged in classroom activity and doing better in their schoolwork. all students in the program had a marked weight gain. sponsorship provides malnourished students with a healthy nutritious meal at school. this meal may be the only healthy meal the child gets on a given day. the children also benefit greatly knowing that they have someone who cares about their wellbeing and are willing to commit to helping them learn and grow! because of your generous support mom is now feeding 50 children each school day! june:school lunch program expands to serve 50 elementary students in its second year! in january of 2013 while we were enjoying a deli- cious lunch lovingly prepared by the teachers of calunasan sur elementary school in loboc, bohol philippines, i asked a question about the students who were out on the playground for lunch break. i asked if the students were all having their lunch now? the answer i got back was shocking and changed my life forever. the teachers informed me that not all of the stu- dents had food. some go home and search their barrio for anyone who would give them something to eat. i couldn’t believe what i was hearing! these children are in school from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., ﬁve days a week. the climate is hot and humid, they are so young and the school day is long. the food i was eating at the time stuck in my throat and i was choking back the tears. i didn’t want to upset the teachers after they had spent their own money to prepare such a beautiful lunch for us, but in my heart i knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that something had to be done. i asked the lord to show me what to do and he re- ally did. when the new school year started in june of 2013 so did the new “school lunch program” at the elementary school. the teachers choose 40 children whom they assessed were underweight for their age. the students are now given a nutritious lunch ﬁve days a week. the meal usually consists of meat, vegetables, fruit and rice - always rice for a filipino - every meal! parents who have children in the lunch program volunteer to prepare, cook and serve the food. this meal may be the only healthy meal he or she may have all day. without caring donors and sponsors this program would not be in existence. saying thank you does not seem enough, but if you could see the faces of these beautiful children enjoying their food i think you’d be choking back tears too. come and join us on a mission trip to bohol. it will change your life forever! —ellen freed
christmas stars made by students hang outside a classroom at calunasan sur elementary
the loboc river winds through the jungles of bohol
16 students currently enrolled in higher education through generous mom supporters montana on a mission has developed several educational initiatives, focused on giving young people the power of knowledge, skills and empowerment that will engage them back in their communities so they may work toward the betterment of the lives of themselves and those around them. this value has been shown over and over again in the success stories of these remarkable young people. in 2014, a mission team got to see that in action when we visited the dumagan family. rodel, now 25, was one of the mission’s first scholarship recipients. he completed his studies at cristal-e college, where he learned the trade of being a seaman. rodel is now a cargo boat captain. his family’s home in calunasan sur is decorated with gifts and mementos from ports around the world where rodel has docked, but his greatest gift home was being able to support his brother, charlie, through seaman school, too. charlie has now completed his education, and is supporting brother rigel’s college work. when rigel becomes a seaman, he has pledged to work to send their sister rosemarie to college as well. “i’m happy my children are studying like their brother rodel,” their mother, pacita told us. “rodel was a scholarship recipient; now he sees happiness. so then he makes sure his sister and brothers go to school and find happiness, too.” during last years’ drought, the well at the orphanage mom sponsors in madurai, india went dry. the orphanage workers care for about 30 kids, with mom’s support. it is overseen by pastor samuel karunanithi, a native of india and pastor of living word church in texas. the well drillers started drilling and had reached 375 feet with- out reaching water. they called pastor samuel to ask if they should quit or continue to drill. pastor samuel prayed for the well and while they were still on the phone, the drillers hit the spring and got water! we serve a great and mighty god! now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in christ jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! amen. ephesians 3:20-21 august:new website launched! our blogsite got a new look! the website has been streamlined and given a face lift. the image-based site is easier to navigate and we can now accept donations directly through the website. mom supporters can also sign up for automated monthly giving. july: new well at madurai, india orphanage focus on education, empowerment www.montanaonamission.org
work began on the construction of a very special home for a very special lady. patricia is now 72 years old and was born without legs. she has made it through life with a beautiful smile on her face to this point because she focuses on one thing…gratitude! that’s it! she always can find the blessing in a situation and we feel so blessed to have been led to her, in order to serve her, love her and learn from her. patricia now has a home of her very own for the first time in her life. the home was thoughtfully constructed and each aspect was custom made just for her. the windows are much lower than that of an average home. her sink and counter tops are at 18 inches, even her bed and furniture were sized just for her. what a wonderful thing it is that this amazing woman can live out her senior years in a safe, comfortable home! montana on a mission registered with amazon smile this fall! amazonsmile is a simple and au- tomatic way to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you! just type “smile.amazon.com” in your web browser, and it will lead you through selecting a charitable organization to support when you make regular amazon.com purchases. after that, every eligible purchase made on amazonsmile will result in a donation of 0.5%. october: broke ground on patricia’s new home september support montana on a mission while you shop!
mission trip november 2014 ateam of 12 volunteers took off from seattle to fly to bohol, philippines in early november on a mission to love and care for our friends. the major projects included: • cleaning and moving the library and all of the books that had been damaged by termites. • building a home for our 72 year-old friend patricia, who was born without legs and has never had her own home. • began painting the transi- tional homes, which were built after the earthquake last year, with a protective coating. • organized several showings of “the jesus film” • trained and equipped semi- nary students so they would be able to continue showing “the jesus film”
ever wonder about going on a mission trip, but hesitate because, well, you're not a "missionary?" ya, we've all been there too -- the good news is, we're all just normal people, with a desire to serve other normal people, and watch god work in astonishing ways. we'd love for you to join us on the next trip. on an unbelievable arctic day in melville, more than 30 brave souls came out to show their support of mom programs. the second running of the four mile cow country stampede was one for the record books! ten below zero with snow and wind – less than ideal running conditions! we all enjoyed warming up with a hot meal and hot drinks after the run at bill’s place. more than $4,000 was raised to support mom programs through the event! november, con’t cow country stampede plows ahead ever noticed mom upside down is wow? wow, indeed! at the end of the year, a total of 365 individual donations had been made to mom. the gifts you share, the prayers you pray, the love you show in jesus’ name makes an impact every day, all year long. december: what a year 2014 has been for mom and all those who its programs impact. thank you, thank you, thank you!!
response: a real responsibility & even greater joy my first experience with montana on a mission came in 2008 after visiting with a man who had just returned from a trip to the philippines with mom. listening to his experiences really triggered a spark in me to learn more about the organization; who they serve and why. my husband josh and i attended a meeting for any- one interested in learning more about the next trip. we talked it over and both felt the prompting to go. we arranged for care for our children, home, critters and ranch and took off with a group of eight others to spend our 10th anniversary on a mission trip in the philippines! who’d have thought! what an experience. we spent 10 days painting, building, wiring, photographing, writing and mak- ing new friends. learning about how the locals live, what they struggle with and what brings them joy. there were so many obvious needs but most people had a peaceful contentment and quiet joy about them. they are able to focus on life’s im- portant moments and don’t struggle with all of the distractions that we allow in our lives. as most mission trip participants find, we felt edu- cated and blessed by them far more than what we could give. our lives were forever changed! i can’t help but imagine the holy spirit thinking, “yes! you’re finally getting it!” this precipitated a new outlook on every part of our lives and we both developed a closer relationship to god that continues to grow daily. we came home and continued to serve with the motivation of shar- ing the love and message of jesus in our commu- nity and beyond. i have since been on two more trips to the philip- pines with mom and my heart continues to open and fill. i can more clearly hear god’s call to serve. he has shown me that we are not here only for rais- ing our families and enjoying life. we have been given a purpose by god, which is to serve christ with the full commitment of our lives. he charged us to be his hands and feet. james 1:22 tells us to “not just be hearers of the word but to do what it says.” (emphasis mine) one of the purposes of montana on a mission is to provide people the opportunity to develop a “life- style of service.” once you go on a trip with mon- tana on a mission your heart will be cracked open and forever changed. (don’t worry, this is a good thing!) the experience will certainly sharpen your focus in seeing needs and desiring to serve in your own community and everywhere you go. our job as christians is to offer our service to god and to be available and willing to do what he asks. the gos- pel is about salvation but it is also about compas- sion, freedom, healing and love. it was hard for josh and i to rearrange all that we had to in order to go on that first trip. it was incon- venient and a little scary. it would have been so much easier to stay home and play it safe, but we would have missed so much! thank god we didn’t ‘play it safe.’ i pray that if you feel the nudge to find out more that you too will say “yes!” it’s been so exciting to see how our community has gathered around and answered the call to help with generous donations of time, money and resources. thank you for all you have already given! as the new chairman of montana on a mission i look forward to continuing to serve and partner with those in need, working alongside them as i share with them and they share with me. as an organiza- tion we will continue to seek god’s will for our time and resources and remain faithful stewards of all he entrusts to our care. — mery donald, 2015 mom board chair from everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked. luke 12:48
no matter where in the world you live water is the body’s most basic need. women and children in kenya spend untold hours hauling water for their families. they share the water holes with wildlife and livestock and the water they bring home is unsafe for drinking. montana on a mission’s first clean water project was in the philippines in 2004. it was a huge success, bringing clean water right to the villagers’ homes. our most recent project is among the maasai people of kenya. several springs in one community have been developed providing over 38 thousand litres of clean water each day. the burden of water collection often means children must stay home to help and cannot attend school. you can help provide clean water, protecting whole communities from disease and increasing opportunities for the women and children who spend much of their day collecting water for their households.
saturday november 28, 2015 10:00am register at: racemontana.com homeward bound m.o.m. is staying in montana this summer and serving big timber and our surrounding areas. we hope to mobilize 100 people to serve locally during the month of august. like our facebook page for more info facebook.com/montanaonamission august 12 - 23, 2015 saturday november 28, 201510:00am
save the date wednesday june 24, 2015 6-8pm bill’s place - melville, mt wednesday june 24, 20156-8pm
thank you. your gifts. your support. your prayers. it all equals a whole lot of just what our world needs most: love www.montanaonamission.org po box 696 | big timber, mt | 59011 email@example.com www.facebook.com/montanaonamission