The Collins Family
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Dear and good friends,
Greetings to you from springy North Carolina. Nancy and I have been busy since we last touched base with you. Our biggest news is that our bundle of grandchildren has grown to six with the birth of Jolene Joy Collins to Isaac and Elizabeth. She was born on April 21 and weighed in at 8 pounds even and 20 1/2 inches long. Among the details is that she sports her Grandpa Collins’ hair. Elizabeth and JoJo are both fine.
Our other big event was a trip that Nancy and I took back to Guatemala, and to the village where we worked, and where the kids grew up.
Here are a few prayer requests for us:
1. Our youngest child (and only son), Isaac, and his wife Elizabeth gave birth to Jolene Joy on April 21. Please pray for “JoJo,” their first child, and that health and joy would abound. They are also in the middle of selling their home and moving to a new one. Missionary kids like to stay busy.
2. Wes is headed back to Peru on May 25 to help train Latino missionary candidates in skills related to Bible translation and linguistics. This block of classes will last two months.Pray for Wes and the students as they all learn new things.
1. CILTA students began linguistics classes in mid-March. Clases will continue until almost Christmas. It is quite a slog for both students and profs. May God give our ten students vision and success as they train for cross-cultural ministry.
2. Praise the Lord that there is funding and local leadership for the Old Testament translation project among the Central Mam, the same Mam language variant where Wes and Nancy worked on the New Testament. Pray for good progress and a real understanding of the heart of Scripture as the team works together.
1. From the 24-28 of March there will be a “Literacy Olympics” in Comitancillo, where Mam young people and children will compete in their Bible reading and memorizing skills, along with lots of Bible drama and music. They will also learn how to download the Mam New Testament to their smart phones. Indeed, the times, they are a changin’. Pray for strong participation and that the Mam would be encouraged in the value and beauty of their language. Wes and Nancy hope to participate as well.
Here are a few prayer requests for February.
1. Wes and Nancy will be visiting several college campuses in early February to talk to students about remaining needs for Bible translation ministry around the world. Pray that the Lord of the harvest would call and send workers into His work.
Here’s a look at what we’ve been up to.
May 2017 be filled with pleasant surprises and special blessings from God.
Wes and Nancy
1. The most-recent cohort of CILTA students has graduated. Pray for them as they return to their ministries with new skills and / or as they relate to missionary sending agencies to work in translation and literacy around the world. May their new skills serve them well.
1. Missionaries often have missionary kids. These are sometimes called “third-culture” kids, because they are different from their parents’ culture as well as from the “ministry’ culture where they live. They are often gifted in many ways, but they can also struggle to understand how they fit. Pray for missionary kids—that they would lean on Jesus, "safe and secure from all alarms.” Thanks much to those who have prayed for the Collins children (now believing adults) and for all Parkside MK’s.
2. Pray for the success of two projects going on in Guatemala in the Collins’ absence. First is a church-based literacy project where hundreds—especially women— are learning to read Mam, their native language. Second is an Old Testament translation project, which is close to 60% completed. The translation committee includes four indigenous leaders plus Wycliffe consultants who work with the Mam translators via the internet.
1. The Collins’ colleague, Byron, has a Mam-language radio program that is promoting the distribution of 1100 copies of the Mam New Testament tied together with Mam literacy classes. Pray that the churches holding classes would be significantly blessed by people coming to understand the Scriptures in their heart language.
2. Wes just returned from two months of classes in Lima,Peru, helping to train 17 Latino missionary candidates in linguistic skills needed to engage for the Gospel people from other languages and cultures. Students are in class until mid-December. Pray that they finish well.
1. Lima, Peru. CILTA (International course for linguistics, translation and literacy),students finish up their first block of second-semester courses on October 9. Pray that they finish well and stay motivated for the overall purpose of their training, which is to be equipped to engage people from other cultures with the Gospel.
2. We are evaluating how to make the training of Latino missionaries more helpful as people graduate from CILTA and go on to field work—language learning, translation, literacy. Pray for Wes as he helps establish a new course to debut early next year.