Friday, July 3, 2015

We are going to Lesotho, Africa!



July 2, 2015
Dear Family and Friends,
                This time last year, Michael had just returned from his mission trip to Botswana, Africa. In the midst of the hardest year of our life together, God provided the opportunity for Michael to serve on a mission team in Africa. That mission trip felt like God whispering to us that He was still there, He was still faithful, and He still knew the desires of our hearts. When we weren’t sure what the future held, God provided a ray of hope reminding us that He keeps his promises.

Michael with his translator, Kago, in Botswana
                Now, a year later, we’ve turned a corner and continue to see how God keeps his promises. He has been amazingly gracious to us. After an extended period of unemployment, Michael is settling in well to the job he’s always wanted at Mississippi State University. The boys are a little older and sleeping through the night (amen!). We’ve grown individually and as a couple in ways that don’t happen unless you are stretched and forced to trust only in God. Looking at how faithful God has been to us, we are encouraged to remain faithful to His call to serve others and spread His name to the ends of the earth.
Parker (2) and Thomas (4)
                While Michael was in Botswana last year, he was able to visit an orphan care center sponsored by ReclaimedProject—a not-for-profit started by local friends in Starkville, MS. He was excited to get to see for himself a ministry we have been supporting financially and through prayer. This fall from September 12-20, we have the opportunity to go and serve alongside the Reclaimed Project team in Lesotho, Africa as they work to get two new orphan care centers established.
Michael and the children at the orphan care center in Botswana
                Like Botswana, the AIDS crisis has left many children without parents in Lesotho. These children have physical, emotional, academic, and spiritual needs that would go unmet without the ministry of these orphan care centers. What’s so beautiful about this ministry is that the centers are run primarily by women from local churches who make and sell handicrafts to support themselves and the ministry. Reclaimed Project teams go in and teach the women how to set up and run the care centers.
                We are excited to follow God and serve in Lesotho, but we cannot do it without your support. As always we covet your prayers. Please pray for:

  • The Reclaimed Teams already on the ground and those that will join them long term in August—for emotional and spiritual strength and health.
  • Our team as we prepare to go and serve together as well as while we are on the ground in Lesotho—for health and unity as we work together.
  • Thomas and Parker as mom and dad leave for an extended period of time.

  •  Most importantly, the people and children we will encounter in Lesotho—that God would begin even now to prepare their hearts and ours for the time we will spend together.

Additionally, if you are able, we also need financial gifts. The trip will cost approximately $4,800 total for both of us. Donations can be made online by clicking here or mailed to this address:

                                  Pinelake Church
                            Attention: Missions Assistant
                            6071 HWY 25
                            Brandon, MS 39047
        
  
**Please write “Michael and Mary Beth Ketchum—Lesotho” on your check so that it’s applied in the proper place.**

We sincerely appreciate both your prayer and financial support. We look forward to sharing about God’s work in Lesotho when we return!

Grateful,

Michael and Mary Beth Ketchum

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