Search
Follow Us Online
Previous News Topics
Thursday
Apr222010

Greater Things Still to be Done

Karen and Darey Jolley, founders of Ambassadors to the Nations. (Click to enlarge)“Would you be willing to radically change your lives for the sake of
My people?”

That was the question the Lord asked Pastors Darey and Karen Jolley twenty years ago. The Jolleys were willing and agreed to follow God’s plan, and as a result, Ambassadors to the Nations (Ambassadors) was founded in 1992. Ambassadors is an international missions ministry based out of the Jolley's home church in Charlotte, North Carolina, Freedom Christian Center, Inc. The focus of their missionary work is on meeting the physical and spiritual needs of the poorest communities in Central America, North America and Cuba through short-term mission projects. The Jolleys have launched Bible colleges in Mexico and Nicaragua, and also established and continue to operate three pre-school/kindergarten programs as well as a first through twelfth grade school in Nicaragua. The ministry has also established churches, medical clinics and community stores in several nations.

All contributions to the Ambassoador's Child Sponsoprship Program are used to support the children's needs. None of the funds are used for administrative costs. (Click to enlarge)Early in their ministry Karen and Darey found sufficient support through fundraising efforts that Freedom Christian Center held on the Ambassadors' behalf. The couple also created a Child Sponsorship Program to help raise support and offset the costs of their missionary efforts. However, it soon became apparent that they would need a major increase in finances to continue meeting the needs of the ministry at the pace it was growing. “We were able to keep up with the costs initially,” explained Karen. “But once we started building new schools and adding new grades, it looked like our growth would out-pace our resources.”The need began to grow beyond the ministry's resources—but God had a plan. (Click to enlarge)

Our heavenly Father is faithful, and as always He had a plan in place to meet the Jolley's growing financial need. Andrew, who is a longtime friend of Freedom Christian Center, approached Darey and Karen at their church’s annual camp meeting, and expressed his desire to help them with their ministry. When it was his turn to speak at the meetings, he called the Jolleys forward to the platform and asked them to share about their missionary work in Central America. They did so and thanks to Andrew’s endorsement, they were able to secure the much needed support.

Darey and a missionary team member minister to school children.
(Click to enlarge)
“Andrew was able to gain more help and support for the kids in five minutes than we could do in a year!” said Darey.

In only a few short months after Andrew's endorsement, Ambassadors to the Nations tripled in size. Today, Andrew continues to speak about the Jolleys and Ambassadors to the Nations, always highlighting their Child Sponsorship Program . This is a program in which a ten dollar a month contribution is made in the name of a sponsored child. The funds help supply food, clothing, water, school supplies, medical needs, and more for the children to whom the
Jolleys minister.

During his 2009 visit to Nicaragua Andrew helped Ambasador's staff member, Pastor Daniel Ortega Reyes (far right) distribute food.
(Click to enlarge)
In addition to speaking on their behalf, Andrew has invited Darey and Karen to travel to his Gospel Truth Seminars and set up an Ambassadors ministry display table. The Jolley's ministry has gained tremendous exposure working with AWM, and Andrew has personally given them thousands of dollars to fuel the building of new schools, churches, and homes for those in Central America and Mexico.

The Jolleys were excited to share with their partners that 2009 was their biggest year in missions to date, “God has proven to us that nothing is impossible with Him,” the Jolleys said. “We declare that greater things are yet to come and greater things are still to be done.”

Ambassadors ministers more than humanitarian aid. Here Karen prays for an elderly woman. (Click to enlarge)The Jolleys are not limited by small thinking. They are currently believing God for: support for a state-side missions office building; new feeding and Bible school programs in Nicaragua; support for a medical clinic in Nicaragua; support to pay for gasoline for their school bus in Nicaragua; Bible College support for Nicaragua and Mexico; funds for a toy mission; support for a nursing home in Mexico; and support for more full-time missionaries.

 

In the video below, Andrew visits with the Jolleys in and explores their ministry efforts in Nicaragua. To learn more about Darey and Karen and the impact they are having, visit the Ambassadors to the Nations website.

Monday
Apr192010

Called to the Mission Field

Sean and Lisa Michaud founders of Kingdom Equippers Ministries International. (Click to enlarge)Sean and Lisa met at a church in Mobile, Alabama. During their very first conversation, they shared with each other their individual calls to the mission field. The two quickly realized that the Lord had a plan for their lives—together. Before stepping into missionary work however, they both sensed God leading them to saturate themselves in His Word. Not knowing what to do next, they made an appointment with their pastor to inquire about how best to prepare for the ministry. Their pastor mentioned a new school that his friend, Andrew Wommack, was starting in Colorado Springs. Despite the fact that neither Sean nor Lisa had ever been to the Springs, or heard of Andrew, excitement stirred in their spirits about attending Bible college, and they knew that this was God’s plan. The first time Sean and Lisa heard Andrew minister was at the opening rally the day before school started, and both were blessed.

Sean and Lisa became Mr. and Mrs. Michaud in 1996, while attending Colorado Bible College (later renamed Charis Bible College). After graduation in 1997, the Michauds, now united in marriage and preparation, answered the call to the mission field—in Russia. A pastor in Ufa, Russia had contacted CBC because he wanted to have a Bible college in his city. CBC-Ufa was opened a short time later, and over 100 students graduated from first year classes the following Spring.

Sean and Lisa opened CBC-Ufa in 1999, and more than 100 students graduated from first year classes the following Spring. (Click to enlarge)Since the establishment of the school in Ufa, the Michauds have moved around ministering in various countries including Lisa's former home, the Caribbean Island of Trinidad. There they helped Lisa’s parents pastor a church for several years. In 2005, Sean and Lisa returned to Russia and not only directed CBC-Ufa, but also began taking students on missionary trips to other Russian villages and cities. Some of these places were without a single church or pastor, so their outreach to other Russian communities was particularly vital. It was during this time that the Michauds founded Kingdom Equippers Ministries International, a ministry whose goal is to train laborers throughout the world to carry out the Great Commission.

Sean (above right) leads a discipleship class in Venezuela. (Click to enlarge)Unfortunately, in 2008, Russia changed their visa laws. Regulations now stipulate that visitors may only stay in Russia for three months at a time, and then they must leave for three months—without exception. Sean and Lisa’s three children, Rachel, Abigail and Jeremiah, were attending Russian schools, and uprooting them every three months would have been very difficult for them. The Michauds knew it was time to leave. Sean recalled asking God to show Him where they would go next. “I sensed the Lord say, 'Africa,'”
Sean said.

However, Africa wasn’t in the Michaud’s immediate future. They returned to Colorado in 2008 for the annual CBC Director’s Meeting. Sean explained to Andrew about having to leave Russia, which led to two opportunities. Andrew suggested that Sean and Lisa move back to the Springs and work for Andrew Wommack Ministries World Outreach and teach at CBC. Andrew also extended an invitation to Sean to travel with him to South Africa in July. After this trip with Andrew, Sean decided it wasn’t yet time to move to Africa, so he took the position with AWM World Outreach and CBC.

Durban, South Africa (above right) is located on the eastern side of the the southern tip of Africa. (Click to enlarge)Again in the summer of 2009, Sean and Lisa traveled with Andrew to Africa where they connected with some ministers from Durban. Sean and Lisa sensed that Durban might be exactly where God was calling them, and one more visit in November confirmed it. “I was able to travel to Durban in November 2009 and was able to minister in quite a few churches. Upon returning to the United States, Lisa and I knew that the Lord was directing us to Durban,” Sean explained.

With their family now settled in Durban, the Michauds have begun leading a Discipleship Evangelism class, and plans are in motion to possibly open a Bible school in June of 2010. As Sean and Lisa faithfully respond to God’s leading, He continues to use them to bring His good news to the world.

The Michaud family, Sean, Lisa, Rachel, Abigail and Jeremiah, missionaries to Durban, South Africa. (Click to enlarge)The Michaud’s have seen God work in amazing and miraculous ways over the years; however, they have also faced many challenges as missionaries. Sean encourages others being called to the mission field with this, “Fear of the unknown causes many people to do nothing. 'Where's the money going to come from?' 'Where am I going to live?' 'How are things going to pan out?' Abraham went out not knowing where he was going (Hebrews 11:8). Abraham went even though he had many unanswered questions. The answers to many questions are on the other side of obedience. We have discovered that God never leads by fear. We had to make the decision not to camp out on our fears and unanswered questions, but camp out on who God is, His faithfulness and what He's put in our heart.”

Ministry pioneers Sean and Lisa Michaud were called to the mission field, and He who calls is faithful (1 Thessalonians 5:24).

Visit the Kingdom Equippers Ministries International website to learn more about the impact the Michaud's ministry is having in Durban, South Africa.

Thursday
Apr152010

Are You Waiting on God?

Yvonne and Grady O'Brien, Directors of Charis Bible College Belfast, Ireland.
(Click to enlarge)
What do you get when you cross a restaurateur from South Bend, Indiana with a professional stylist from Dublin, Ireland? A grand opportunity to watch God's plan unfold...

Grady O'Brien, born in South Bend, was operating a restaurant in Dallas, Texas when he met Yvonne, who was working as an Art Director for Toni & Guy Salons in the same city. The two were married and began their family in the early nineties.

In November of 2000, friends of the O'Briens invited them to a church in Oak Cliff, a community in Dallas, to hear Andrew teach. After Andrew shared his message, the O'Briens had the opportunity to speak with him. During their conversation, Yvonne's Irish roots were mentioned and Andrew recalled seeing amazing signs and wonders during a visit to Dublin. The O'Briens went on to share that they had a desire to minister to the people of Ireland. Andrew's response to their statement radically changed the O'Brien's lives. Andrew looked at them and asked, "Are you waiting on God?" Grady replied, "Yes." Andrew said, "Maybe God is waiting on you." Grady described the moment as if an arrow had pierced his heart, and in that moment he knew that through Andrew's words, God was confirming to him a call to
the ministry.

CBC Belfast, one of Grady's classes (Click to enlarge) Over the course of the following year the family left Dallas, and by faith relocated to Colorado Springs, where the pair enrolled in Charis Bible College (CBC). Grady attended on a full-time basis, while Yvonne home-schooled their three children, and completed the CBC first year Correspondence curriculum.

After Grady completed the two year program the couple met with Andrew to discuss their next step. With the goal of ministering to the people of Ireland still in mind, Andrew suggested that they move to England where Grady could further prepare for his role as a minister by completing a third year apprenticeship through CBC in Coventry, England. Yvonne graduated from CBC and Grady completed his apprentice program in 2004. They were ready to impact
the world!

Part of the experience at any CBC is the required foreign missions trip. Here, Yvonne and several students pray for a woman in a market in Malinalco, Mexico.Intending to open a CBC extension school, the O'Briens, and their four children moved to Galway, located on the western coast of Ireland. They made the most of every ministry opportunity; however, after a year's time they had not seen the response they were looking for as they sought to position the school. Another move was eminent.

In the Spring of 2005 Andrew visited Ireland and held meetings in both Dublin and Belfast. After attending both, it was clear to the O'Briens, that Belfast would be a much better location from which to launch the college. While at the Belfast meeting, Andrew asked Grady and Yvonne if they were sure they wanted to launch a school. After assuring him of their commitment to do so, Andrew announced their intent to open the CBC extension. Two months later the O'Briens moved to Antrim, just north of Belfast and began holding classes. In 2006 they moved into the school's current location within the city limits of Belfast.

Yvonne and students minister to a young boy in Mexico. (Click to enlarge)Now, after answering the Lord's call to ministry, and five years after the launch of CBC Belfast, the O'Briens are beginning to see the fruits of their efforts multiplied. They recently performed their first ordination ceremonies for several of their past graduates (2 Timothy 2:2).

Understanding from first-hand experience how powerful the message of God's unconditional love is, it is exciting for Grady and Yvonne to see the school growing. The college is filling up with students of varying ages and backgrounds, all coming together with a hunger for God's word. There are 19 students currently enrolled in CBC Belfast, and the O'Briens are anticipating that number will double over the course of the coming months.

Not everyone is called to full-time ministry or to open a Bible college like the O'Briens did, but if you find yourself waiting on the Lord, it could be that HE is waiting on you.

To learn more about the O'Briens and their ministry to the people of Ireland, visit the Charis Bible College-Belfast website.