Labor of Love: Building Up the Institute for Global Opportunities

Many hands have made light work as the IGo building is now remodeled and in the final stages of preparation for the coming students. The Thai construction workers, who resided in the building while working there, have all moved out. We are now preparing for the final painting before we purchase the equipment needed to begin classes. We have enjoyed several Sunday morning services at the facility already, and with the absence of carpeting and padded seats to deaden the sound, the singing was euphoric.

We were blessed by the loving labor of Raymond & Mary Yoder, a team of alumni from the Sharon Mennonite Bible Institute, the Glenn Martin family and the Bill Hess family who helped with building wardrobes and some painting. We still have quite a bit of furniture to purchase and a kitchen to equip in the coming months.

We thank the Lord for raising up a Thai pastor who has taken a personal interest in helping IGo become legally established in the country. Several years ago Pastor Kiat spent forty days in prayer and fasting to discern the will of God for women in the church. He began teaching his church about the importance of wearing a veiling which produced some tension between him and a few other pastors and missionaries. His enthusiastic and ready assistance has been invaluable, and we ask that you pray for him as he labors to traverse the maze of legal paperwork necessary for IGo’s continued presence in Thailand.

We anticipate the arrival of our first twenty-five students in mid-April. God has answered our prayers for a full enrollment for the first semester. The students are coming from Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Ohio, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Chiang Mai. They also represent nine different Anabaptist conferences and fellowships. We indeed feel blessed to journey with these potential missionary staff in the year ahead, and want to encourage any more interested students to come for the second semester which begins this summer in August .

Recently our staff attended the annual conference of the Global Tribes Outreach personnel. The days were filled with relaxation, fellowship and spiritual challenge. Anabaptist missionaries from India, Mongolia, Laos, China, Bangladesh and Thailand expressed their support of the IGo training program and we hope to send students to many of these locations in the months to come. We will be organizing close to twenty-five missionary trips for the students in the last eight months of this year. For this we will need a lot of organization and prayers!

The remaining days before IGo commences will be very busy for our staff as lesson plans need final development. Aside from study there are a lot of loose ends to be finished up at our facility, so we are very grateful for the time we have before the arrival of our first semester students. We covet your prayers as we move into the final preparation period.

By Val Yoder, IGo Administrator (I Witness News/Spring 2007)

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