Spoke to Sanjoy, our Senior Worker in India this morning to discuss the itinerary for when Tracey and I go over on the 21st October til 8th November ‘18. This will be my 30th time, wowza!. We usually go with a team but we think God had other plans this time.
Sanjoy is a true brother. I just worked out that we’ve been friends for 24 years. I first met him at the YMCA in Ranaghat, next door to where our Stepping Stones Mission Centre now is. It has been an amazing journey since that day. We learned to dream big dreams together and trusted God for the impossible. We now have an amazing purpose built centre with staff and team facilities. At the centre is our treasure, the two children’s homes Bethel and Bethany that are now full of boys and girls that have found safety and a loving family environment there.
Our conversation over the phone was really encouraging. I’ve posted the itinerary here for those of you who would like to pray for us while we are out there –
22/10/18 – Arrive Kolkata 0850. Settle in. Meet family, staff and children.
23/10/18 – A.M. Practice for Birthday Celebration with children. P.M. Trustees Meeting.
24/10/18 – A.M. Practice for Birthday Celebration and arts and crafts with children.
P.M. Village outreach with teaching, worship and prayer.
25/10/18 – A.M. Practice for Birthday Celebration and arts and crafts with children.
P.M. Village Outreach with teaching, worship and prayer.
26/10/18 – 10A.M. til 3P.M. Children’s Birthday Celebration. 500+ Guests.
4P.M. Meeting with children’s family and guardians.
27/10/18 – A.M. Blood Donation Camp.
Eve. Staff Training.
28/10/18 – A.M. Bethel Community Church (Elim) Inauguration. P.M. Church Lunch.
29/10/18 – A.M. Train Journey to Dumka, Jarkhand State. Staying with Bishop Arfan.
We will be visiting some of our children’s villages, meeting old friends and
hopefully meeting some new ones.
30/10/18 – Same
31/10/18 – A.M. Same. P.M. Train Journey back to ‘Base Camp’, Ranaghat, West Bengal.
01/11/18 – Bethel Boys day out to Nico Theme Park, Kolkata.
02/11/18 – A.M. House Visits for prayer etc.
Eve Family Home Fellowship at Sanjoys with extended family.
03/11/18 – A.M. Waiting on God and Prayer with B.C.C. (Bethel Community Church (Elim))
Eve. B.C.C Leaders Meeting.
04/11/18 – 9 A.M. til 3 P.M. Womens Conference @ B.C.C
5 P.M. Church Service @ B.C.C.
05/11/18 – Bethany Girls day out to Nico Theme Park, Kolkata.
06/11/18 – A.M. Farewells to Children, Staff and Friends. Travel to Kolkata. Spend the whole day with Debu and Maria at Hope India Ministries.
07/11/18 – Depart Kolkata 0350, Arriving Manchester 1500 (Same Day)
As you’ll see we are going to be quite busy but we are sure to get lots of time quality time with our children and our friends in the villages that we have come to love like our own family.
During our trip we are planning to take all our children to Nico Park (a poor relative of Alton Towers) in Kolkata which the kids will love. It has been more than 2 years since we took them all out on a trip of this kind, so I know that they will be extremely excited and looking forward to going. The plan is to take the Bethel Boys and staff one day and the girls and their staff another day, that’s about 80 people! It will be amazing! We will have to hire 5 jeeps per trip which is cheaper than hiring a bus.
The children’s birthday on the 26th October is always wonderful but this year there will be more children than ever. At the moment we have 32 boys and 31 girls. The kids are doing the whole programme and every one will be included. Happy Cake Day! Can’t wait. The kids will get to meet any family or guardians that come for the celebration.
Our trip is going to be action packed with lots of meetings with colleagues, trustees, staff and church leaders.
Tracey is particularly excited about the Women’s Conference on the 4th Nov. Last years was awesome and the ladies were very encouraged, many sharing testimonies in the church of how God had empowered and inspired them to commit their lives to Him fully for the first time.
Our trip to Dumka in Jarkhand is very exciting for all of us. We are anticipating possibilities for future ministry in this area will come about as a result of this trip. That’s all I can say.