Missionary Update: John Mark & Judy Hatcher in France [March 2015]

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

March 5, 2015

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We hope this finds you enjoying the Lord’s blessings. You are a blessing to us and the work of the Lord in France.

As mentioned in our last letter, Darrell and Shirley Messer were with us for a few days early in February. We certainly enjoyed visiting with them. Unfortunately, our winter school vacation started just as they arrived and our Sunday meeting was a record low for the last couple of years. Several of our regularly scheduled Bible studies and activities did not take place for the same reason, but the Messers were able to see some of what God is doing here.

Hatchers and Messers in FranceTwo days ago, Judy and I celebrated our 42nd wedding anniversary. It is hard to believe that it was really that long ago. When I was about ten years old, my mother encouraged us in one of our family devotional times to begin praying for the person God wanted us to marry. I began doing this on a regular basis and God certainly answered my prayers. As Christ and the apostle Paul tell us, some people receive the gift of being able to serve the Lord as a single person. I am so grateful for several believers that I know who have committed their lives to the service of God as single people. The Lord created us and knows us intimately. He certainly knew that I would not be very effective alone. I am thankful beyond words for the life and ministry mate God gave me.

Last week we started a new Bible study in the neighboring department. We had intended on starting it two months ago but the host couple lost a newborn child and postponed the first meeting. I had met this couple last November when they arrived in our area with a job transfer. What a wonderful surprise we had for the kick off last Wednesday. Thinking that there would be perhaps 6 individuals present, we were thrilled to have a dozen. This new couple are great recruiters. Judy and I both delightfully await what God will do through this Bible study. Our other Bible studies are going well as are the Sunday meetings.

Dad turns 90 in April and we are planning to be in the US for just a few days to celebrate this event with Dad and the family and also to attend the Spring Missions Conference hosted by Thompson Rd. Baptist Church in Lexington, KY. It has been 6 years since we were last at this conference. I would love to see you there.

We pray that God will meet your needs and use you as His light where you live. Please pray for us.

Proclaiming the Good News in France,
John and Judy Hatcher

John and Judy Hatcher

4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher[at]aol.com

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Missionary Update: The Tates in Kenya [February 2015]

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

February 5, 2015

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Wow!  What an exciting month we’ve had here in Kenya.  It’s been exciting because it has revolved around the visit of Pastor Darrell Messer and his dear wife Shirley.  Just in case you didn’t know, Pastor Messer is one of the directors of BFM, but he also just happens to be my own pastor from my own church back in Bellbrook, Ohio.  When my family moved to Ohio and started attending Emmanuel Baptist Church in Bellbrook back in 1980, Pastor Messer was already the pastor there; he and Shirley have been there ever since then.  So needless to say, these people are very dear to my heart.  They have been trying to get here to Kenya for a few years, but their plans up to now have always been thwarted.  But, they arrived here in Kenya two weeks ago, and now as I write this report we are on the eve of them returning to Nairobi to catch a flight to France where they will visit BFM missionary John Hatcher.

We’ve packed a lot into the past two weeks.  After a couple of days in Nairobi allowing them to catch up from jet-lag and allowing us to worship on Sunday in English, we headed home to Kitale.  Their first morning in Kitale gave them a rude welcome to missionary life in Kenya as I looked at the water tank and, behold, NO WATER!  While Pastor and I scrambled around town trying to jimmy up some way of getting water, I had visions of severe water rationing and what it might look like to our guests if we couldn’t take showers or flush the toilet for two weeks.  Welcome to Kenya, Pastor and Shirley!  Fortunately by early in the afternoon the water supply was flowing again and I could put that worry behind us for a while.  Although the morning plans got trashed because of the lack of water, we were able to tour Kitale in the afternoon – walking through the market with its mounds of second hand clothes, piles of stinking fish, blaring music and stares from the Kenyan people who were not used to seeing that many Americans in one place.  In the days to come we visited some of our Kenyan friends in their homes, and spent a day at In-Step Children’s Home as well as getting to see the ministries we are involved in.  Here are some of our activities for the week:  On Thursday, Pastor and I did some evangelism in town and started up a new Basic Christianity class for which we did get one student to attend.  On Friday we attended one of our classes which one of our students taught.  We have been trying to teach him how to effectively teach the Word of God.  On Saturday we went to a new group that Nathan and I started which meets in the home of Kefa and Matilda.  We had 27 people attend the group that morning where we sang, worshipped God and studied God’s Word together.  Saturday afternoon we went to the prison where Nathan ministers.  We were able to meet his men and hear them sing to us, and then we watched as Nathan taught them from the Word of God.  Sunday found us worshipping with Pastor Kirui at Bethel Baptist Church and then fellowshipping together with the other Kitale missionaries later in the afternoon.  Throughout the week Pastor and I ate lunch at my favorite dive of a restaurant in town, Mama Chiku’s.  I think Pastor has found a new favorite place to eat.  I had a hard time convincing anyone else to join us there though.

Pastor Darrell Messer preaching out in the bush to the Pokot people to the "church under the tree".

Pastor Darrell Messer preaching out in the bush to the Pokot people to the “church under the tree”.

The highlight of the trip for me though, was when Pastor, Josiah and I were able to head up into the Kenyan bush and visit the Pokot people.  The temperatures were oppressive, we slept in tents, ate rice and goat every day, and got filthy from the dust.  But we preached a few times from the Word of God, encouraged the local ministers, met some new people, and showed the Jesus Film a couple of times – the result of which was that a number of people professed faith in Christ.  Pastor was even asked to help a local pastor with some baptisms.  We went to the river, dug out a shallow spot in which the baptisms could take place, and did the baptisms.  Thirty feet away were two dead crocodiles floating in the water.  They had been killed by the locals some time earlier.  It made me keep looking around to see if there were any other critters swimming around that we needed to be aware of.

We love Pastor and Shirley and have thoroughly enjoyed their visit.  We will be sorry to see them go.  Blessings to you both, Pastor and Shirley!

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 & Chloe)

rojuta[at]gmail.com
Visit their blog!

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Missionary Update: The Radfords in Kenya [February 2015]

Nathan and Carrie Radford serve the Lord in Kitale, Kenya. Their main ministries include indigenous church planting, a prison ministry, and a hospital ministry for mothers with premature babies.

February 3, 2015

Dear praying friends,

We thank the Lord that He has brought us through another month, as He has watched over us, and been so faithful. We hope each of you are doing well as you follow and serve the Lord in the United States. This update will give a current report on the ministries here.

Currently, we have visitors from America here. Pastor Darrell Messer and his wife, Mrs. Shirley Messer, from Emmanuel Baptist Church in Bellbrook, Ohio have come to visit here in Kenya and see what the Lord is doing. Pastor Messer has served faithfully as a Baptist Faith Missions board member for many years. They have come to visit the Tate family and also to see some of our ministries, such as the church planting, prison ministry, and hospital ministry. This is their first time in Africa, and we pray that this trip will be informative about the challenges that we face on the mission field, and how to pray for us and the people of Kenya. It has been a joy to have them and please pray for their trip back to America in a few days.

The prison ministry is continuing along well. I just finished teaching on Adam and Eve, and the entrance of sin into the world. I did my best to show the results of sin and how sin separates us from God. We saw through the lesson that we are all sinners, and in need of a Savior. Romans 3:23 says “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” This is foundation teaching for the men to learn and please pray that the Lord would work in their hearts as the Gospel message is presented to them. It has been exciting to see the
men coming faithfully and learning much from the Word of God.

My partner Roger Tate and I have been praying about another area to reach in Kitale with church planting. We both agreed after prayer that a good area to start is called Robinson. There are many people in this area who need to be reached with the Gospel and taught how to follow the Lord. We just started last week with our first lesson, so please pray that the people would continue to come faithfully, and if it would be the Lord’s will, that a church could be started in that area later. We trust the Lord with all these plans and lay them before Him. We can do nothing without Him. Psalm 37:5 says “Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in Him; and he shall bring it to pass.” We are following by faith and trusting the Lord to work in His time and plan.

In family news, the girls are continuing along well. We appreciate your prayers for them for friends their age to play with. This is one of the major challenges here. Also, our daughter Camille has been complaining of stomach aches for several weeks. We went to a good doctor here in Kitale and got her good medicine. I just found out about this doctor a few weeks ago, as he is located in an area that I rarely go to. It is a blessing to know that a good doctor is nearby and able to diagnose well. Anyway, she finished with the medicine and we got her tested at a lab, and her tests came back negative for any parasites or other things. It is challenging here as the medical care is always a challenge, especially with little ones. A fever and chills here could mean different things, and sometimes you have to do your best to look up the symptoms online and try to diagnose yourself. These are just some of the challenges with living here, but we praise the Lord that Camille is doing well now.

That is the current report. Please keep us in your prayers, and thanks again for your cards,
letters, emails, or other forms of encouragement. We love and appreciate all of you.

Serving in Kitale,
Nathan and Carrie Radford
P.O. Box 4150
Kitale, Kenya
East Africa, 30200

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2014 Spring Conference [Wednesday Morning]

BFMSpringConference2014_squareThe final day of the Spring Conference began in an overcast, chilly Lexington at 9:30 Wednesday morning.

John Hatcher, missionary to Brazil, opened the morning session by sharing some of his experiences in ministry and how the Lord has blessed them and then shared some Scripture. “Through many dangers, toils, and snares…’tis grace has brought me safe thus far and grace will lead me home.” 

John 1:1-5, 14; 14:1-2, 36; 1 John 3:1-2-Oh how God loves us.

God will provide and He is still providing.
Romans 12:1-2


Darrell Messer, pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Bellbrook, Ohio, brought the second message from 1 Peter 3, mainly focusing on verse 15.

This is the problem: how involved are we in the day of salvation?
1) Sanctification: “But” goes back to vs. 13-14 which is why we are to set Him apart.
2) Preparation: Be ready. Spend time with God. Know how to answer.
3) Presentation: To give an answer. Get in the Word.
4) Anticipation: A hope that transcends this life. Speak with meekness and fear, not with arrogance.

We don’t witness because of fear of men or because our life doesn’t match our witness. (vs. 16)


Larry Fisher, Pastor of Rosedale Baptist Church in Rosedale, West Virginia delivered the final message before another delicious lunch from 2 Corinthians 6.

“Then” working together with Him. All is nothing without Him. “Without Me you can do nothing.” We are not working to win the battle, the battle is one.

“Succoured” in verse 2 means to go to the aid or lift up. He helps us. He has said “do not receive the grace of God in vain.” This must mean we can receive the grace of God in vain. He has given us the time to work. Now is the accepted time, behold now is the time of salvation. Blind Bartimaeus knew the time was now for him to receive his sight.


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