Archive for the ‘Lessons by Martha’ category

Kildonan, Guyana

March 1, 2020

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Saturday, February 29, 2020, the World Evangelism & Media Team was with the Kildonan Church of Christ in Guyana, South America. Several area congregations were represented, and as before, Martha addressed the ladies and the male team members spoke to the combined group as well as separately to the men present. This was our final workshop for 2020 in Guyana; Martha and I have been in Guyana for 30 days. Our team of Frederick Darrell, Nigel Milo, Martha Rushmore and Louis Rushmore provided edification for brethren from all 10 regions of Guyana. We hope that our efforts will contribute to the future appointment of elders and deacons, congregations striving for a greater degree of fiscal participation in their presence and labors for our Lord, a move toward a greater role in self-edification and less reliance on foreign teachers, a greater and sustained evangelistic zeal even in the absence of missionaries on the ground with them, and heightened pursuit of modesty and moral purity. Always, Martha and I are likely more encouraged than those to whom we go, hoping to encourage them. Plans are already underway for the 2021 nationwide workshop in Guyana.

Mabaruma

February 28, 2020

Frederick Darrel

Wednesday, February 26, the World Evangelism & Media team flew from Ogle in metropolitan Georgetown to Mabaruma. That evening, brethren Frederick Darrell and Nigel Milo preached in a crusade or a Gospel meeting for the Church of Christ at Hosororo on a high hill above Mabaruma. The meetinghouse was full of members and their children.

Thursday, the team spoke to a gathering of several congregations in the church building at Hosororo. Nearly every bench was filled. Some brethren had traveled several miles by boat before finishing their trek by land. Brethren Frederick Darrell, Nigel Milo and I addressed brothers and sisters on the theme “If Not Now, When?” Martha spoke to the ladies.

Friday, the team flew back to Ogle. Martha and I did a little shopping in Georgetown as well as walked the ocean side of the seawall so my wife could collect some more sea glass. Leaving Georgetown, we paused at Hope Children’s Home, before continuing our journey to New Amsterdam, where we were to lodge once more in preparation for our final workshop of 2020 in Guyana, South America.

Enmore Church of Christ

February 24, 2020

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Our venue today for this year’s World Evangelism & Media Workshop was with the Enmore (Guyana, South America) Church of Christ; these brethren were gracious enough to host again in 2020. Many congregations were represented, some of which traveling far to be present. The auditorium was full. Martha Rushmore spoke to the sisters in Christ, while Frederick Darrel, Nigel Milo and I (Louis Rushmore) spoke to brothers and sisters or for one session to the men present.

A large contingent of members from the Amelia’s Ward Church of Christ in Linden were present—three vans full. Burnham Drive and Blueberry Hill churches of Christ from Linden were represented, too.

I have difficulty understanding Guyanese Creole, but I presumed that since we’re all supposed to be speaking English, Guyanese brethren could understand me better than I understand them when they converse with each other. Today, a sister in Christ informed me that this is the first year over the years I have been going to Guyana that she understood my English. She wasn’t sure whether I was speaking more clearly or if she had become accustomed to my speech.

It appears that all in attendance were please to be there and were edified. I know I was happy to be present, and I was edified also. After a long day, traveling to the venue, returning to Linden and approximately six hours of program, we were all tired. A stop at the mall along the way home was a welcome interlude.

Paramakatoi Children’s Class

February 23, 2020

Wednesday, February 19 was a big day for the village of Paramakatoi. The first lady of Guyana was to visit. She was campaigning for her husband to be reelected for president. She was also dedicating the new water system for this jungle mountain community. There was preparation made for her coming all week and maybe the week before. There were hammers and saws going all day and evening long. Bleachers, stands for concessions and a large platform for the first lady and other government officials were built. There was a stand for the band and the emcee to play music until 2:00 a.m. for three days and nights.

On the same day, I had a very big surprise. About 200 or so elementary school children and their teachers came to the church building to entertain us. They were supposed to quote memory verses and sing for us; they program was supposed to take about 15 minutes. Well, I guess things got a little mixed up. Great for me! Louis came to me about 5-minutes before things were to start and asked me if I could teach the children a lesson. Sure, I can. He asked me how long my lesson would last. I said about 30 minutes.

This is how things proceeded. Brother Nigel led the children in two songs; Louis said a prayer, and then it was my turn. All the men left and had their own class on the porch of a neighboring shop. I introduced myself to the class and started the lesson. One of the men came in and told me about the memory verses. So, I had the children volunteer to say their memory verses. They did a great job!

I started my lesson on “Hear No Evil, See No Evil and Speak No Evil.” I had three children come up and help me. I told them that they were monkey helpers because the hear no evil, see no evil and speak no evil were monkeys. (I have two sets at our home in Florida. One set has monkeys and the other has frogs.) They covered the ears, eyes and mouths. Then the whole class did the same thing. I tried to involve them all. Some got restless, but for the most part, the children did well.

Teaching the children has been the highlight of our work in Guyana so far this year. Another children’s class was in Monkey Mountain last year. When I finished, I had about 30 from age 1 to about age 11. I love the children here in Guyana. They want and give attention to Louis and me—maybe because we are white. They are all so loveable. ~ Martha Rushmore

Camping in the Mountains of Guyana, South America

February 22, 2020

Always before when our team went to Paramakatoi, we were able to lodge in the Amerindian guesthouse there, and over the years, its amenities have been upgraded. This time, however, government officials, who had come for the dedication of a water system, trumped our plan to reside in the guesthouse once more. Consequently, we camped in the classroom of the church building. Martha and I occupied one tent, while brother Nigel Milo slept in a pup tent. Brother Frederick Darrel slumbered nightly in a hammock. On the plus side, we didn’t have to walk to the meetinghouse—since we were already in it! The downside, though, was bucket and cup bathing in the shed for the ATV and using an outhouse.

We flew into Paramakatoi on a small twin-prop plane, and after five days flew out on a larger single-prop airplane. The flight to Paramakatoi in the mountains from Ogle on the coast was direct, but the return trip made stops at Monkey Mountain (a gravel airstrip) and Mahdia.

Martha and I were certainly out of our comfort zone, and our arthritis distinctly worked against us. I also battle low blood pressure.

The mountain village of Paramakatoi is the only place to which we go in Guyana where we get cold. Sweat clothes for sleeping at night and jackets at least in the morning are a must. We even bought a couple of blankets while there—extremely thin but unexpectedly almost too warm.

All four of us taught while visiting the Paramakatoi Church of Christ. Frederick Darrel, Nigel Milo and I took turns day and night, and Martha taught a couple hundred children and their teachers who graced us with their presence one morning.

A few excitements occurred during our time in Paramakatoi. Guyana’s First Lady officially commissioned a new solar-powered water system. Since it is nearly election time, her husband’s political party and the opposing political party were well represented in the crowded soccer field. Venders sold their wares and the music loudly blasted the village until 2 a.m. daily. The whole affair resembled a small county fair. There were more aircraft coming and going in one day than would usually arrive and depart over several months.

Near the conclusion of our time in Paramakatoi, we presented to attendees new Bibles. On our way out of Paramakatoi, we were able to give a preacher and his wife a ride to Monkey Mountain—saving them an 8-hour hike up and down serious hills; the plane was already going that way, so we quickly added them to our passenger manifest.

We believe that we edified brethren from the two congregations which assembled for our workshop. In addition, we encouraged them and commended them as well for their continued evangelistic outreach into distant villages. This little church, which hosted our program, in the edge and on the fringe of an otherwise busy world is self-supporting. Through their own initiative and ambition the congregation launched out with the Gospel comparable to the commendable achievements with the Gospel of the church at Thessalonica (1 Thessalonians 1:8). This little family of God meets three days a week for worship and devotionals to praise God and fortify itself.

Martha and I fawn over the little ones. Little girls especially are drawn to Martha, and I enjoy playing with the children, too.

It was a hard outing for us, and we exhausted all the clothes we brought to Guyana. We were delighted to shower and rest in a bed once more. I hadn’t shaved for a week!

Richmond over the Essequibo

February 16, 2020

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Saturday, February 15 found the World Evangelism & Media Team conducting a workshop in the meetinghouse of the Richmond Church of Christ across the Essequibo River in Guyana, South America. Several congregations were represented, and we also had visitors from the Flatwoods Church of Christ in Kentucky, USA. Members of one of the local congregations attending traveled 65 miles by boat before continuing their journey on land so they could be a part of the workshop. The church building overflowed into the outside front of the structure. We trust that we glorified God and contributed to the edification of all who were present. We know that we were encouraged and built up.

The night before, we lodged in a hotel in Parika. Unfortunately, Martha took another tumble (her 9th major fall since we married three years ago). Besides hurting generally and literally from head to toe, she sustained a nasty abrasion on her upper thigh. Few of us got much sleep that night, what little night there was before 3:30 a.m. when we arose and made ready for our departure in the still dark of night.

Beyond appreciating anymore the fast, uncomfortable body-beating water taxis, we traveled as pedestrian passengers aboard a car ferry to make the 20-mile crossing of the Essequibo River to Supernaam. Then, we took a taxi to Richmond, some 30 minutes or so beyond the river port.

This side of the biggest river among big rivers in Guyana, brethren always heartily support our get-togethers for fellowship and study of God’s Word. Many talented, longtime preachers, their families and additional members grace us with their presence each year. Lord willing, we look forward to mingling with these saints next year, too.

2020 Guyana Workshops

February 11, 2020

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Each year for several years, I have been traveling to Guyana, South America once or twice a year to conduct workshops and Gospel meetings across this nation. Guyanese preachers and I together major in edification of our brethren (1 Corinthians 3:6) and minor in evangelism (Mark 16:15-16). Edification is crucial for personal, congregational and brotherhood maturity among foreign nationals for them to participate in a meaningful way in growing the Lord’s church internally and externally among them. In earlier years, my late wife Bonnie accompanied me here and taught ladies and children. Since 2017, my wife Martha and I continue to labor in this ministry together and alongside Guyanese preachers.

The workshop theme this year is, “If Not Now, When?” The corresponding topics address laying the groundwork for and progressing toward the appointment of elders and deacons in the churches throughout the country, encouraging brethren to assume congregational responsibility for their finances, preparing more fully to rely primarily on themselves for their own edification, and analyzing and implementing methods for the churches of Christ throughout Guyana to accept a greater role in evangelizing their own country. Happily, many congregations are already actively working towards these goals, and so far, the lessons have been well received.

Out time here is from January 31 through March 2. We have completed programs in Lethem near the Brazilian border and in Port Kaituma near the border with Venezuela. At the latter location, we had two venues—one in the town and one along the bank of a canal to the Kaituma River. Tomorrow, we leave our base in Linden for two more workshops, like the sites two which we’ve already traveled, distant from each other and in opposite directions.

Wednesday and Thursday, we will lodge in New Amsterdam; Thursday we have a workshop hosted by the Cotton Tree Church of Christ. Friday night, we will lodge at the other end of the coast in Parika. Saturday, we have a workshop scheduled for Richmond across the 20-mile-wide Essequibo River; that evening, we will make the several hours’ drive back to Linden.

In the weeks ahead if our Lord permits, we will have programs near Georgetown the capital, Paramakatoi in the mountains near Brazil, outside Mabaruma near Venezuela and Kildonan once more in the southern coastal area.

This year we minimized the amount of clothes and foodstuffs and maximized the number of Bibles, books and tracts in our luggage. This year, too, I’m taking fewer pictures than in prior years (as well as in the Asian countries to which I go); it’s a matter of been there—saw that before. The more I come here or go to be with brethren in Asia, it is like going home, not to say that I don’t appreciate our home in America. Martha and I solicit your prayers and encourage your participation with us.

We are most fortunate to be coworkers with brother Nigel Milo, his wife Jasmine and son Zab. This year, my additional Guyanese co-speaker is brother Frederick Darrel, preacher for the Kitty Church of Christ in Georgetown. Together, we aim to glorify God, edify brethren and reach lost sous with the Gospel of Christ.

Robert’s Bush

March 4, 2017

96-dpi-4x6-roberts-bush-3Friday, March 3 was spent in earnest labors on the next Rushmore Newsletter, the February edition of Gospel Gazette Online (yes, I’m late) and a forthcoming issue of The Voice of Truth International. I finalized the efforts of Rebecca (back in the States), Martha and me on the Rushmore Newsletter, and I sent it digitally to a printing company in Michigan. Subsequently, I sent our newsletter information over the Internet to over 700 persons, some of whom responded almost immediately with congratulations on our marriage, which took place on New Year’s Day this year.

96-dpi-4x6-roberts-bush-1I also prepared and sent the next color postcard to be printed by the same firm. One side of the card shows Martha and me in a flat-bottomed boat, wearing ponchos in a pouring rain, with the tide out and experiencing difficulty getting to shore; the back of the postcard contains information about our mission work.

96-dpi-4x6-roberts-bush-2Saturday, March 4 marked the final 2017 Annual World Evangelism Guyana Nationwide Workshop for this year. It was hosted by the Robert’s Bush Church of Christ. It assembles about an hour from our base in Linden. That was Martha and my 16th seminar this year and over the past six weeks.

96-dpi-4x6-roberts-bush-4Several congregations were represented. Nigel Milo, Martha and I, as at other locations, taught all those present. Brother Milo and I took turns teaching the combined classes as well as classes for the men. Martha taught the ladies classes.

Though this year’s workshops throughout Guyana have just ended, we are already anticipating next year when we will do it all again, Lord willing. Martha has turned out to be a natural, consistently placing the teaching of the Word of God above what is unfamiliar and challenging to her in the surroundings and backdrop of an overseas destination. I think that brethren we encountered have benefitted from the effort of all three of us. However, we are edified and uplifted as much or more than anyone we have visited in Guyana. In any case, to God be the glory!

Lima Sands

February 26, 2017

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-4Friday February 24, throughout the day, I worked relentlessly on The Voice of Truth International, volume 92. Though I much prefer working with the alphabet over working with numbers, immersed in proofing and layout all day non-stop, nevertheless, leads to extreme dreariness. It was a relief of sorts that evening when Nigel Milo, Martha and I boarded the Toyota and headed toward our next World Evangelism Nationwide Guyana Workshop. At Georgetown, we took a left to cross the Demerara Harbour Bridge. Guyanese know what rivers are, and the Demerara is a good specimen of a real “river”—one and a quarter miles wide. The bridge spanning the Demerara River is a floating (i.e., anchored on barges) toll bridge with a peaked portion to permit small watercraft to cross beneath it and an additional retractable section to grant passage to larger river traffic (e.g., freighters).

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-11On the other side and not far from crossing the river, we proceeded to lodge at a “resort hotel” in preparation for continuation in the early morning (just a few hours later) onward toward Lima Sands, Guyana on the other side of mammoth Essequibo River—20 miles wide at its mouth!

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-9Friday night was a restless one for Martha and me as we made use of the modest accommodations (hot water not included). Noisy roomers adjacent our quarters and light leaks over the wall between the two rooms, from the hallway and above the curtains only contributed to our anxiousness as we awaited our 3:30 a.m. alarm to rouse us in anticipation of our 4 a.m. departure.

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-7Saturday, Brother Nigel drove the remaining 30 minutes or so to Parika, a river port on the eastern bank of the Essequibo River. By 5:10 a.m., we were aboard a car ferry as pedestrians and on our way for the approximately one hour transit across the big river, weaving through a sprinkling of islands. After disembarking and selecting a taxi, we headed over an hour away to Lima Sands, reachable for the last many minutes with extreme care over a muddy, rutty, gouged and grooved sand road.

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-6Doubtless, daily rains hampered travel for all attendees. Eventually, the little church building literally overflowed with Christian brothers and sisters. People were seated on the porch and in the yard, too! Attendance by several congregations swelled the attendance to over 100.

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-16Nigel, Martha and I presented lessons; Martha spoke to the ladies for the last hour. The program was punctuated with a lunch and snacks also. Brethren appreciated the program and look forward to repeating it next year, Lord willing, at a sister church in the area.

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-14Making a few stops along the way, we retraced our path back to Linden. We arrived, completely exhausted, about 8:30 p.m.

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-15Sunday back in Linden, we worshipped once more with the Amelia’s Ward Church of Christ. Again, I taught the morning Bible class in the auditorium, and then, I preached during the evening worship assembly.

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-13Saturday we completed 14 of the 16 scheduled programs at the various venues. Two more sites this week will complete the nationwide workshop for 2017. However, there remain some locations on which we are waiting to hear back about even more seminars before Martha and I return to the USA on March 9.

96-dpi-4x6-lima-sands-12There is no better “tired” than being tired for the Lord and in His service. Personally, I’m planning on resting when I’m dead!

Wednesday & Thursday Seminars

February 23, 2017

96-dpi-4x6-enmore-5Wednesday, February 22 Martha Lynn and I didn’t leave the Nigel and Jasmine Milo domicile until 5 p.m. Dutifully throughout the day, I worked at proofing and finishing the layout for Volume 92 of The Voice of Truth International. Volume 90 was distributed not long ago, and Volume 91 is at the printers presently; recently, we switched print production from Hong Kong, China to India.

96-dpi-4x6-enmore-4At the last moment and even a little beyond the appointed time, Martha and I sauntered from the Milo residence to the lot away to the meetinghouse for the Amelia’s Ward Church of Christ. The Annual World Evangelism Nationwide Guyana Workshop began about half an hour after the scheduled hour—right on time! Brother Nigel and I each spoke to the assembly in the auditorium, and then he and I took turns speaking to the men, while Martha addressed the ladies. The ladies in attendance, per usual, outnumbered the men. As often is the case, seminar attendees were treated to a meal by the hosting congregation.

96-dpi-4x6-enmore-3Thursday, we three moved the seminar to the Georgetown, Guyana, South America venue of the Enmore Church of Christ and Hope Children’s Home. Rain, rain, rain! Upon arrival in the capital city, we drove through seriously flooded streets. When we arrived at the facilities of the Enmore congregation and children’s home, we met a cleanup crew of adults and children as they rid the building of flood waters. An hour or so behind time to begin, but understandably so, once more, we three spoke in the traveling seminars.

96-dpi-4x6-enmore-6Afterward and taking advantage of a reprieve from the showers, we crossed over the seawall protecting Georgetown from the Atlantic Ocean. We walked a sandy beach strewn with water washed glass, shells and Hindu diyas (floating votives). Martha headed straight to the water, holding her skirt hem and wading ankle deep in the beige water.

96-dpi-4x6-enmore-7By the time we made a couple of stops and traveled back to Linden, I was worn out and the day was spent. Tomorrow, we will resume office duties, and I will work on The Voice of Truth International and Gospel Gazette Online. Our next workshop venue will be across the Essequibo River—requiring a very early morning departure if we wait until Saturday and expend the entire day before returning to Linden. Martha and I are still “honeymooning” in Guyana, so to speak—having the time of our lives in service of our Lord. May God be glorified and our fellows be edified!