Prayer and Praise Summary from the Burlesons (details below):
- Praise that Becky’s mom was able to move back into her home in Dallas last month!
- Praise that the Lord provided funds so that we could purchase our tickets!
- Pray for safe travels as we return to PNG in June. Pray for the kids during this transition.
- Pray for Neil’s transition into a new ministry.
- Pray for laborers to reach the lost in PNG. Pray especially for support personnel (teachers, pilots, mechanics, accountants, etc.
We are grateful to God that he has once again directed our paths such that we are able to return to ministry in Papua New Guinea in June! Thank you for standing with us during this extended home assignment these past two years. We are also happy to report that Becky’s mom (Ann) has moved back into her house in Dallas after spending most of the last year with us. We are grateful for the sacrifices our extended family is making so that we can return to our ministry in PNG. Thank you for praying for us during this time.
Another item of good news: God has provided for our plane tickets and other moving expenses! These have been purchased and our departure date is in June. Please pray for us as we pack up and get ready for another move. Pray especially for the kids during our time of transition. Michael will be a HS senior next year and has many decisions to make about his college plans. The girls are looking forward to 8th (Cara) and 9th (Katie) grades at Numonohi Christian Academy. Remaining here in the USA, Ben and Andrew are looking forward to being roommates next year at Texas A&M as they continue their undergrad studies.
Becky will continue to teach Spanish in the high school when we return, but Neil will be moving into a new ministry (see below). Please pray for teachers for the coming years at NCA. We are facing a number of shortages next school year. Some of the elementary grades may need to close and some high school classes may have to be taught via correspondence. Recently, the school released an outstanding video highlighting the need for teachers at NCA and how they play a vital part in the church planting effort. See it at vimeo.com/115151866
Your prayers are a critical piece of your partnership in this ministry! Please, please never underestimate what God can do when you all stand in the GAP on our behalf, and on behalf of the work HE is doing in PNG.
Ministry Change for Neil
We mentioned in our last letter that the PNG field had asked Neil to consider moving out of the school and into a new ministry. Although this was a very difficult decision, after much thought and prayer Neil has agreed to this and is very excited about the direction God is leading us.
Starting in July, Neil will be the Director of Personnel for the PNG field. The Department of Personnel is divided into Member Services (keeping our missionaries in good standing with the government, citizen employment and training, new candidates, etc.) and Member Care (helping to maintain the overall spiritual and emotional health of our missionaries as they serve). As Director of Personnel, Neil will oversee this department and work alongside the other directors on the Field Leadership Team. Your prayers for him during this leadership transition are much appreciated!
PNG Fast Facts
Because we have a number of new readers, we would like to give you some fast facts on Papua New Guinea and NTM’s work there:
- Location: Just north of Australia in the South Pacific
- Population: 6.5 million
- Language: Over 800 distinct languages
- NTM works: 42 current, 21 established
- NTM personnel in PNG: 367 adult missionaries
- NTM NT Translations completed: 30, including 3 in just the past several months
We have been reading reports from the PNG field of exciting things happening in recent days. As mentioned above, several NT translations have been completed and printed. The chronological Bible teaching is beginning among the Tangguat people this month…and this is being done by teachers from the Inapang church: one PNG church taking the Gospel to a neighboring language group! We could go on and on; in fact, prepare to receive more updates of what God is doing among the peoples of PNG in the weeks and months to come. Your partnership with us is a key part of the Gospel going to this “uttermost part” of the earth. We are privileged to have you standing with us.
Because HE Lives,
Neil and Becky Burleson
Ben, Andrew, Michael, Katie & Cara