Missionary Update: The Tates on Furlough from Kenya [January 2014]

The Tate Family has served the Lord in Kitale, Kenya since January 2008. Their main ministry is indigenous church planting.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As I’m writing this the new year has just begun. We have flipped from 2013 to 2014 and, just like that, 2013 is gone, filed away forever. In this update let me recap 2013 and give tentative plans for 2014.

Recap of 2013:
2013 turned out to be a good year and a difficult year at the same time. The difficulties came in facing the normal hardships of being missionaries. This includes long periods of time away from our home country and living in our host country. Maintaining close relationship with God can also be difficult given these circumstances. But 2013 brought many blessings as well. Throughout the year we saw advances in the ministry and the kingdom of God. We saw Shangalamwe Baptist Church organized, members baptized and a Kenyan elder appointed to oversee the work. We saw other groups come together for worship and Bible study only to see many of these groups falter and stall. However, we learned much from the failure of these groups and why they were never able to mature and ultimately be organized into New Testament Baptist churches. In addition, we watched as our friend and student, Titus, began starting groups on his own that came together to hear the gospel and learn from the Word of God. He started many groups, saw many Kenyan people being saved, was able to organize some of those groups into Baptist churches and baptized many. Sometimes we think that the work is progressing slowly (and it is) but when we look back we praise God for the many things he has accomplished. Then, finally, at the end of August of this past year we returned back to the States for our time of furlough and reporting to the churches of the work we have been doing in Kenya.

Plans for 2014:
Since no one can predict or control the future, these plans and hopes for this year are strictly tentative. We place 2014 into the hands of our Sovereign and loving, Heavenly Father and entrust what we do to Him. That being said, here’s what 2014 might look like. Early this year, in early January, we will take Emily, our firstborn, to Virginia to begin attending Patrick Henry College. This is a major event in the lives of the Tate family as I have written before. In just a couple of days our family dynamic changes dramatically. This event is lying heavy on my heart and on the hearts of the whole family. Then, in March, we return to Kenya. Again, this is all in the hands of God, but we do have return tickets already and barring some emergency we will be back in Kenya in March. The only other major event that I can foresee is that if Amy is accepted and there is an opening, she will probably be attending Rift Valley Academy starting in August. This is the same boarding school outside of Nairobi that Emily attended throughout her high school years. And, of course, in between all of these major events will be the work of the ministry. Our plans include renting a small Kenyan house in order to use for training of men to do the gospel ministry. From this house we will train, model, teach, assist, watch and lead faithful Christian men to reach their own people with the saving message of Christ and to start, organize and oversee New Testament Baptist churches. I would also like to see this house used as some kind of charitable outreach center that would could be used to help Kenya people with the many difficulties they face each and every day. There are many logistics to work out concerning these plans. May God’s will be done in our lives, in our family and in our ministries.

Until next month, beloved.
May God’s peace and joy be with you.

For the glory of God in East Africa,
Roger & Julie Tate (and Emily, Amy, & Josiah)

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