Beyond our borders in Papua New Guinea

Some years ago I was blessed to visit in Hewa and get to know the 2 families who worked among them: Jonathan & Susan Kopf and Keith & Angie Copley. Back about 2004 another missionary (Leah Kneviel) and I helped them set up their literacy program as Leah introduced me to the joys of that ministry.

Through the trials and hardships those missionaries faced through the intervening years, the Gospel has been presented, a church established, and ongoing discipleship is being carried on among the Hewa people who have placed their trust in Christ. Jonathan Kopf has also worked to translate Old Testament portions and the whole New Testament for this people group. Back during my Tribal Resource ministry days in Wewak PNG, I had the privilege of compiling and printing the ever-growing portions of his translated materials. The final one was a particular challenge as the number of pages barely fit in our largest spiral ring binding materials!

The Kopfs latest update is joyful news for the missionaries and the Hewa people! With faithful perseverance the Hewa New Testament is now completely translated, the final check with translation consultant Jason Stuart is done, and the entire New Testament is in the process of being readied for printing!

Susan Kopf recently posted this update on the translation:

This week after many years (first check in 2003, picture above), our team completed the last check of the Hewa New Testament!!! We praise the Lord that this project is now finished! Thank you to Jason Stuart for being there for 20 years checking the translation verse by verse for accuracy. Thank you Levi Lenz for joining the checking team. Thank you Angie Copley for all the content checking you did for so many years! We love you Copley family and are blessed to have traveled this road together since the year 2000.

Please pray for Jonathan as he works on the final details that need to be completed before printing the New Testament. Pray for the Hewa believers as they read His Word and grow in their understanding of Him.

There’s much else to pray for among the Hewa people. The missionaries have pursued training for many of their local friends for carrying on meeting the medical needs of their community.

Several Hewan women are trained as midwives to help especially with complicated births.

They have a well-functioning local school now, too, in one of the villages, with National teachers continuing the work of educating the children in “reading & ‘riting & ‘rithmatic.” Lots we can pray about with them, isn’t there!

Meanwhile, back in SEMO

Thanks to your prayers, things are indeed progressing to see my 74-year-old sister Faith and her family (2 daughters and 1 grandson) move here to Missouri! Many miracles need to happen for this to become reality but as we pray, we will see God at work on her behalf! It would be ideal if they could be here by the end of July when our Kansas and Indiana branches of the clan will be converging in SEMO for a few days.

My 3 brothers and I were all together for a couple of days and we made a call to Faith and family. This was the first time we had gotten to talk at length with Faith’s grandson, 8-½-year-old Julian. I know I’m a boasting great-aunt but this kid is SMART!!! He knows the states and most of their capital cities. He knows the countries of Europe and their flags, far outshining me in world geography! Learning to do a travel itinerary is yet to come, though. When asked if he knows which states he’ll be crossing when they leave California and come to Missouri he plotted a “see the USA” tour, then said we’ll have to make a U-turn in West Virginia! There will be fun days ahead as they all join the ranks here!

Could I ask you to Please, PLEASE, PLEASE !!! be praying with us specifically for:

1. My sister to realize when God would have her FINALLY retire from work so that she can concentrate on the details of moving. The sooner the better, but there are the monthly mortgage payments yet to consider.

2. For her to get her federal and state income taxes done. She says she’ll be able to quit working after her taxes are filed. This is always a stressful time for her too, compiling all the necessary documents and finding someone reliable to do the paperwork for her.

3. A reliable company that will buy her house as is within the short time frame we will be working with. If anyone knows of a trustworthy company that works out of the San Fran / Oakland / east bay area of CA please let us know!!!! At the moment we’re flying blind on that count!

4. That the payment for her house will cover the rest of her mortgage. A bit extra to buy a car when she gets to MO would be SOOOOOOOO helpful too as we won’t be bringing her current vehicle with 240,000+ miles on it!

5. For enrollment of Julian in a Christian school here in town – and friends for Julian when he arrives.

6. For all involved to be willing to scale down so that we can transport all they need to bring, but not try to move all some would like to bring – which would involve at least 2 trips back & forth CA ➔ MO. We really cannot do that! Most are willing to pare back – for one it is much harder, though.

7. The details of the move: U-Haul??? Pod??? Muscle men to load the cargo. Etc., etc., etc.

8. Timing of the move. I will probably drive to CA about 3-4 weeks before their departure date and stay to help finalize the exodus and them escort them back.

My thanks to you for praying with us for this family endeavor. I came home nearly 4 years ago thinking it would be imminent. We are at long last seeing God at work beginning to bring this about, and are trusting that bringing Faith to live with me will give her some hope of an easier rest of her days. As we pray, God hears and He delights to answer, often in ways beyond our wildest hopes and dreams.

Because Christ came and is coming again,
We have ………. HOPE !!!!
Hope Sharp – retired NTMPNG