Friday, October 3, 2014

September Newsletter 2014


The Summer: 
We arrived home on June17th. We had a great flight. It took us a good two weeks to get settled, and we were cold. The kids left for the Bill Rice Ranch with our church’s youth group the week that we  arrived home. It was quite busy trying to get them ready for camp. We prepared a little while in Ghana to collect some of the things they needed. They loved camp and they came back with great stories from camp and they said the preaching was good too. Our church had “Camp Chippewa” which is a day camp. They have a  water slide, archery; BB guns, climbing wall and so much more. Also there were 2 messages each day at the “Tabernacle.” Joseph and Nehemiah were campers for the week. Naomi and Matthew were group leaders who took the kids to their different activities. I taught the Monday afternoon message and my wife helped out in the nursery. 15 youngsters got Saved by weeks end! To God Be The Glory! After camp we had The Siekbert Family Reunion and all of my brothers and sisters were there. Most of their families made it too, but not all. With many of us being in ministry it is hard for us all to get together at one time. Most of us went to my Dad and Mom’s church, First Baptist Church of Milford, Ohio where we grew up, came to love the Lord, and surrender to His Call in our lives. Our Kid’s started Homeschooling with Abeka August 12th.                                                                                                                                                                       



Brothers & Sisters with Mom & Dad





The Blessings: 
When we got back from Africa we were able to get a nice mini van and housing that is 3 minutes away from our church. My niece, Abi & nephew-in-law, Joey watched our kids and sent us to an expense paid, nice hotel. I think it was a plot that our two teenagers enjoyed and quite honestly Jackie and I enjoyed it too! It was an Enjoyable Blessing to go sporting with my wife for the Evening. “Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest…” Eccl. 9:9-10.                                                                                                                                       
The Meetings
Our meetings have begun. We headed to WV and had a great time with the church folks   there. Sunday evening we headed near home to Stow, OH. We haven’t been to this church since they took us on for support in 2001. The people stayed afterward to talk with us, what a wonderful group of people. We had a  great start! During September and October will be in WV, OH, MI, Upper NY, and PA.                                                                                                                                                                             
The Ghana Report:
Prince had emailed us a couple of times with great news. The first email was that 9 students got saved at West Ridge School! They attended a youth conference where they had to design a tract with other competitions. He said our church placed 2nd. He also attended Esther Norty sister’s funeral last month. A year ago another Baptist church there in Ghana challenged us to a Bible quiz and we came in 1st place. They have asked for a re-match on August 29th on the book of Jude.  There have been no reports on the Ebola break out in Ghana. We thank God. Please pray for our people there.     





Esther N.

Prayer Requests: 
Our Travels; New Meetings & New Support; Church Meetings for Updates in What God’s Doing in Ghana; Mission Conferences; Our Kid’s Schooling; Our Church in Ghana, Cornerstone Biblical Baptist Church – Church Land, Those Ministering; Newly Growing in the Lord there:                   Primary Pastor Prince – watching the flock, Evening Bible Classes, does Bible Studies in my absence; 
Secondary Pastor Koasi - Adult Sunday School, Evening Bible Classes
Kendall – Song Leader, Translator, Sunday School Supervisor;                                                           Kid’s Sunday School & Jr Church Teachers; Benjamin, Celestina, Cecilia, Esther N.;                           Newly Growing Christians: Philip, William, Peter, Robert, Steven, Michael, Jefferson, Ebenezer, Emmanuella, Nicolina, Winifred.                                                                                        


Sunday School Workers

“HIM DECLARE I UNTO YOU,”                                                                                
Bits Of Bread: Be Faithful! Others are watching.                                                                                  It’s A Testimony Of God. It’s an Encouragement to Others! It May Be What Makes the Difference in Someone Else!“Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day,…” – Acts 26:22

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

July 2014 Newsletter

VBS: 
Our theme this year for VBS was “Putting On The Whole Armour of God” My wife and daughter made from poster board a coat of armour for the kids to try on. They also did the crafts for the week. Each day a lesson was taught on a piece of the armour. We had a great week. It rained a little bit on two of the days but the kids still came out. We had to move the kids from the tent to the porch and move the games under the tent, but all went well. We saw 125 kids the first day and ended with 189 by Friday, with 2 professions of salvation, Solomon & Rosemon. 






  
Responsibilities Meeting: 
Before we left Ghana we had a responsibility meeting for all workers in the church. Reminding them of their responsibilities and to continue the work of God in our absence. We are thankful for the Sunday school teachers, song leader, translators and ushers. Please pray for these young folks as they stay faithful in serving our Lord, the church as a whole, and the extended ministries of this local church: West Ridge School,  Weekly Bible Studies in Kojokrom & Anaji. Pray that they’ll stay vigilant and diligent, discerning and perceptive in not fall prey to the Devil! 


    
                                                                     
Reprieve Day: 
After the week of VBS we had a get together at our house. The girls came over early to prepare some chicken, rice and stew. We played volleyball, got out the big 6 ft. ball and had lunch. We finished the day with devotion and had a great time of fellowship with all those who helped with VBS.                                                                                         



Goodbye & Baptism: 
Elizabeth got baptized our last Sunday there in Ghana. Elizabeth has been coming to church with her sister since she started walking. It was good to see her trust Christ and follow in baptism. Elizabeth is 11 years old. After the baptism we all walked back to the church. Naomi and Matthew put together a slide show of pictures from the past 3 years. After that we said our goodbyes with tears we headed home.                            
               
Elizabeth got baptized


Travel: 
Prince rode with us to Accra taking us to the airport. Ghana was playing America for the run up to the World Cup that evening. All through the airport we were giving them a hard time saying that USA will win against Ghana. USA lost to Ghana the last two times we played them for the World Cup. We said goodbye to Prince and Naomi was crying, the ladies were shocked that she was crying, will she be back, why is she crying? We said because he is our Pastor and we love him. Ghanaians don’t show a lot of emotion they maybe sad, but you don’t see them cry often. As we were waiting for our plane, the run up game began. In the first 29 seconds of the game, USA scored the first goal. Wow! Then we realized we have to get on the plane with all of them. Ha! No, it was a good flight and USA did win the victory that night. Please pray for us as we shift gears preparing to go to many of our supporting churches and hopefully, new supporting churches reporting, presenting, updating, teaching, preaching, and traveling on what God has done for us in Ghana.                                                                                                                                          

Bits Of Bread: Please pray for our church in Ghana – CORNERSTONE BIBLICAL BAPTIST CHURCH “But let us, who are of the day, be sober putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.”                                                                                          - I Thessalonians 5:8                                                                       
“HIM DECLARE I UNTO YOU,”                                                        

Matthew J. Siekbert       

Thursday, May 22, 2014

May Newsletter 2014


Conference On Missions: 
Each day of our conference we looked at a need to strengthen our- selves in. Sunday was Going By Faith, “HAVE FAITH IN GOD’S PROMISES”, which was also our theme for the week; Monday was Opening Their Eyes, getting others to see their need of the Savior; Tuesday was Get Your Joshua, personally discipleship of others; and Wednesday was Getting Them The Word Of Jesus, the gospel. Just as Salvation is by Faith, as Christians, our Service to Christ must
be by Faith. 

Salvations: 
Michael, a former West Ridge student, & Jefferson his brother was led to the Lord by Prince. Gifty, at her plumbing store in Anaji along with Foster, her friend, I got to lead to the Lord. 


Michael (right)

Jefferson

Birth/Death: Evelyn, a church member had a baby girl in March. Koasi, one of our Pastors, lost his grandma and they had her funeral. In Ghana funerals are a big event having lots of people, lots of booze, lots of music from Friday to Sunday. The funeral had its witnessing opportunities. 

Evelyn & Jackie & Baby Girl


Pastor Koasi's Grandma's funeral

Message Bearers: 
For March we had Philip bring a message from God’s Word. It was his first time. He is just over six months old in the Lord. It was the Apostle Paul that got saved in Acts 9:6. In a few days and a few verses later in Acts 9:20 he started preaching. Philip is of a humble and meek spirit. He is growing in Biblical knowledge of the Truth. In September just after his salvation he started in our evening classes at church along with becoming a baptized member. At work he often witnesses and tells of salvation, how it is secured forever, and how it is not obtained by works nor kept by works. Ghanaians are very religious with song, church going, and dress at their certain times of “WORSHIP”. They say that they are Believers, Born Again, Trust in Jesus Christ and all of the right surface words, right surface answers, and right surface kindness but after questioning them and seeing their consistent unfaithfulness you hear and see that their true trust is in their dead works.
Joseph our son was our message bearer for April.


Phillip

Joseph

Anniversary & Easter Activities: 
Cornerstone Biblical Baptist Church celebrated 7 years of ministry on April 13th. We had a nice morning service and then a song service in the evening. Easter Sunday we had good services. Easter Monday is a big day here in Ghana. Our church got together with another Independent Baptist Church in the area, to play a game of football (soccer) and we lost 2 to 1. April 24th we showed a film in Kojokrom as an outreach for our Bible study there, we had a good turnout. Many from the church
showed to help and stand behind the ministry their in Kojokrom.

Practicing a week before

                                               


Bible Classes: 
Our 2nd full year of Bible classes at the church all finished up on Thursday. I finished my last exam on Monday. Koasi finished on Tuesday and Prince finished his final yesterday. Our kids finished school on May 2nd. They are glad to have a break. I have some special Bible classes with them in the mornings and that will finish Monday. Jackie is putting them to work cleaning the house and packing. They say, “They wish they still had school”. 

Sweet 16: Our daughter Naomi turned 16 on May 4th. She had some girls over for her birthday. It was a little chaotic having 7 girls in and out of the house. It was a fun time for her. They spent the night on Saturday and went to church with us on Sunday. 


Naomi 16

Esther, Cornelia, Celestina, Little Esther, Naomi, Cecelia, Emanuella

Furlough:
Please be in prayer for our travels and bookings. Don’t forget we will be leaving here for furlough June 16th 2014. Please send any mail to our home church; the address is on the left side of our newsletter along with our email address for contact. We hope to see many of you this furlough!!! I am booking meetings to come and report on what the Lord has done. “HIM DECLARE I UNTO YOU,” 

Bits Of Bread: 
Just as Salvation is by Faith, as Christians our Service to Christ must be by Faith. “Accounting that God was able...”- Hebrews 11:19a 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

March 2014 Newletter


Some Special Topics Taught And Preached
“The Church’s Obligation To Their Pastor”; “The Pastor’s Motivation & Manner To The Church” was January’s topic. In February the topic was Stewardship -“God’s Stewards Must Be Blameless”. March, this month’s topic will be Missions. Please be in prayer for our Conference on Missions next week that our Faith will be increased and that the church will be more burdened and moved to action in “Opening Eyes” and “Finding Their Joshua”.

Message Bearer: 
Joseph, a national in our church brought January’s Message on “Prayer” – In how we should pray. Matthew brought February’s Message on “Assurance”- In ways it comes. By February the
excitement and goals of the New Year for many gets more trying. Our Saturday Prep Class for some have slacked off. I guess that is part of the weeding out process. For those who have remained we have looked at the method of Studying the Bible by Chapter going over Joshua 7. We have broken it down into nature sections. It has been fruitful. I have especially noticed how the Lord responded to Joshua in this surprising and devastating defeat at AI. God said to Joshua in 7:10b-11a, “Get thee up; wherefore liest thou thus upon thy face? Israel hath sinned,...”. To me the Lord was saying to Joshua, sitting here devastated at this defeat is not going to get anything accomplished. Go get the sin problem found out, Cut out the cancerous sin problem, and Get back to the main object and Go Defeat AI. In Joshua 8:1-2 the Lord said to Joshua, “..., Fear not, neither be thou dismayed:...arise, go up to Ai:... do to Ai and her king as thou didst unto Jericho and her king:...” God uses the faithful! 



Joseph


Matthew

Kojokrom Bible Study: 
Be in Prayer for bus route out of Kojokrom. Our goal for Kojokrom is to get our Bible Study there to be faithful to coming to our church in Sekondi on Sundays. Then after we see their faithfulness at coming on Sundays build a bus route for Sundays until we get a good core of people. Then I would love to see us plant a church there in Kojokrom. This is how our church here in Sekondi got its start. Some of the topics that I’ve preached there have been seed thoughts from another missionary in Kumasi, Ghana. The thoughts based on Salvation have been on Adam & Eve; Cain & Abel; Hagar/Ishmael –the bondwomen & Sara/Isaac –the free woman. For the last several weeks we’ve been speaking on Abraham/Isaac –test, trails, types, and pictures. Every few weeks, hands are raised at the end of our services for salvation, challenges, and decisions. God is working! It takes a while for a pearl to form!

Ebenezer  (closest to you) and Emanuella (in green) in church on Sunday from Kojokrom.


Men’s Prayer Fellowship: 

At the Men’s Monthly Prayer Fellowship we had some eggs, bananas, coffee cake and tea. I taught on “Loving God”-“What if I Loved Him Like I Should?” for January’s topic with 14 in attendance. “Finding The Right Lady” was February’s topic with 11 in attendance.

Getting some breakfast

Men Praying

Prayer Requests & General Updates: 
Please pray about our Church Land. We are still waiting on it. The place we have staked out they are still saying it is for us. Property in the Sekondi location is hard to get. This week at West Ridge Schools Elsi brought to me by her friend accepted Christ. Last week WR Schools Bro Prince led Mary to Christ. Our Bible Studies are going good William in Anaji is growing in the Lord. He is faithful to Sunday morning church services and men’s prayer time. He also has been faithfully coming to our Saturday morning John & Romans distributions once a month. 

Pastor Prince dealing with a West Ridge Student (Mary)

Pastor Koasi dealing with a West Ridge Student

Please Pray For Us As We’ll Be Coming Home For Furlough On June 16th. We need a Good running, reliable, traveling mini van & New Support!!! We have lost about 7% of our support by churches that are struggling.

Bits Of Bread: NOTE THE ORDER IN SCRIPTURE:
“...yet he hath opened mine eyes.” “And he said, Lord, I believe.” - John 9:30, 38
“To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.”- Acts 26:18
“If people are to turn from darkeness to light, their eyes must first be opened to see the difference between darkness and light.”- By Don Richardson 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

January 2014 Newsletter

Salvations & Baptisms: 
Emmanuella from our Bible Study in Kojokrom got Saved in December. Albert, Prince’s older brother in Accra the capital, I got to Lead to the Lord in October!!! Peterson & Philip are two men in their mid-twenties that where baptized in November. Peterson has been coming for years but just confirmed his personal trust in Jesus as his Savior during our baptismal classes this past Fall. Philip was Saved at the end of August. Steven who got Saved the Sunday after our Revival in October is our first one to be Baptized this coming Sunday of the New Year.                                                                                            
Pastor Siekbert, Peterson, Pastor Prince, Phillip and Pastor Koasi (Baptism)

Prince leading Emmanuella to the Lord


 Review/Report/Renewal: 
In December we have our yearly planning meeting where we Review the year; Tally up & Give Report on the church finances; & then Renew our Plans for the Coming New Year. As we Reviewed things I looked at 5 individuals that have gotten saved in 2013: Peter, Robert, William, Philip, & Steven. Each One has been baptized (Steven by this Sunday). Each One is growing in the Lord. Peter & Robert of 15 & 14 come to our Bible Studies in Kojokrom. They have also been active in church helping to set up & raise the Sunday school tent & ushering. A testimony was given last night from a church member concerning Robert’s change. This church member was speaking with Robert’s unsaved Father he spoke of his son’s Changed Conduct since coming to our church. With William of about 21 I have Saturday Morning Bible Studies. He is faithfully at Sunday Morning services. Philip of 24 he has been in our schooling for the church on every Monday, Tuesday, & Thursday nights, along with faithfully coming to all church services, then the last to be Baptized this Sunday, Steven of 13. He is also involved with helping set up the Sunday school tent. Each One of these 5 who have gotten Saved, Baptized & Involved in the activities doing their part at the church invite others to the church & have an effective testimony for Christ. Looking into our Financial Report of the year in our Tithe we went about $240.00 over the previous year; In our FPM Giving which we started teaching on 3 years ago this coming March the first year they gave $43.85; this second year to date is $151.54 by March our complete year for FPM Giving we estimate that they will have given $195.12. This might seem like pennies to many, but taking the Average of the previous year, taking in consideration our congregation and taking in consideration that this is Africa where many people are not taught to give or “Expected” to give to missions.The Widow and her 2 mites have done well. This is Exciting news for Cornerstone!!! Biblical Principles Of Missions Work Even In Africa!!! Looking to our Renewal for the New Year, Pray for us in God’s doings. As regular: Church Services; Soul winning & Visitations; Nightly Bible School for the Church with my teaching Monday on “The Church”, Tuesday Koasi teaching on “Little Know Bible Characters, & Thursday Prince teaching on things that are “Sure & Stedfast”; Weekly Bible Studies in Kojokrom & in West Anaji; Saturday Prep Classes with the Men every 2 weeks; & then adding Monthly John & Romans Distributions in Sekondi & Kojokrom; Men’s Special Sunday Morning Prayer Fellowship once month!                                                                                                
December’s Activities & More: 
Christmas week we had a week full of activities. Monday we went Christmas caroling and passed out “Blessing Baskets” to some families. We gave a basket to Robert’s family, then loaded up the van and went to Peter’s house, then Steven’s, Kojokrom Bible Study Family and then to William’s family. We had a great time. Our church has been giving to these baskets since October. Wednesday evening we had a Christmas service. Friday we loaded up the van and headed to Ankobra Beach. We played volleyball, soccer, some played in the water and then we had lunch and a devotion. It was a great Christmas week with our church family.  We held a New Years Eve service at 10:00 PM and prayed in the New Year!! After service we lit off some fireworks, with Shadrick firing one into a window of a house, the room lit up, and someone peaked out, but no one was hurt.

Blessing Basket to Robert's Family

Christmas Caroling

Devotional at Ankobra Beach (Prince)

Celestina and Esther

Lunch Time

 Our Message Bearers of God’s Word for November & December were Peter on “Hope and Joseph on “Sharing Your Testimony”.                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Peter Preaching

Joseph Preaching

BITS OF BREAD:  THOSE WHO HAVE SENT CARDS, GIFT BOXES. OFFERINGS THANK YOU!!!!!                                                                                                                                              
 ~ New Starts Are Often A Result Of The Resolved & Faithful
Like Noah, Joshua, the Second Adam, Jesus!                                                          
…thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things:…”  - Matthew 25:21b