|Personal Greeting - Joe Keim||Elizabeth Update|
|The Bible Club||Adjusting from an Amish Community to English Society|
|Serving the Lord||MAP Has A Need|
|Mount Vernon OH Bible Study||Activity Night|
|Testimonies||From WI to OH|
|Singing and Sharing|
|PO Box 128/575 State Route 250 N, Savannah OH 44874 Office: (419) 962-1515|
|Personal Greeting - Joe Keim|
Please grab a cup of coffee (tea is fine too), and pull up a chair. It’s time again for us to pause and let you know what all the Lord has been doing through the MAP family. As in any other ministry, some pray, some give and some go. Each group is just as important as the other; all are specifically called and properly equipped of God to get the gospel out to Amish people who are still waiting to hear that Jesus Christ alone can give life everlasting.
Several months ago, I walked into a church service in our home town where the pastor was being recognized for his years of service. As I sat in the over crowded sanctuary, a man leaned over my shoulder and handed me a note that said, “Joe, ever since you came to our church 3 years ago, my family prays for you every day.”
Here is another blessing: Just moments ago, as I was writing this newsletter, a man walked into my office and handed me (2) $20 bills for the ministry. Then he said, since 2006, I have prayed for MAP on a regular basis.
Your involvement is priceless! Together,
and with God’s help, we have accomplished
so much! Thank you!
On April 29th, Esther and I made our way to Malone University to load up Rachel’s belongings and move her back home. Her first year of college is over; she will be working part time at our church Day Care, as well as MAP this summer.
Robert and I were very busy during March and April. We traveled 7,700 miles and presented MAP to 16 churches in 6 different states. There are 26 more churches scheduled for the remainder of the year.
Please pray that the Lord will provide
traveling protection, as well as anoint
us with His power and give us a fresh
mind during each presentation.
Bible Study and Prayer Groups
In-between travel time, we continue to do Bible studies and prayer meetings with various groups and individuals in our area. In all, we are mentoring and discipling 25 to 30 former Amish and buggy Mennonites every week. These are all things that we love to do, but as you well know, being around people can be very exhausting.
For the past two months, we have worked diligently, re-vising the book, “Amish: Our Friends, But Are They Fellow Believers?” The booklet is 8.5x11 and has more than 50 pages in color; it is laid out very well and illustrated with photos.
If you, or someone you know, is interested in having us come in and do a 2-hr seminar, please let me know. Our next seminar takes place on June 5th, in Romulus NY.
Elizabeth has gone back to her Amish community in Michigan and is living with her parents again. According to a trusted source, she is coming right along but not yet back to her normal self.
Her neighbor writes: She is looking wonderful. When we got to her place, she was helping her mother and sisters clean house. She is getting stronger everyday and no longer using a walker to get around. Her voice is still very soft but also getting stronger. She goes to physical and speech therapy 2 x a week. She is still very bored and sad to be out of touch with everyone and everything!!!! But she is working very hard to get strong enough to move on. She looked bright, and that makes us very happy to see her looking energized again. She has come a long way....Let's just keep praying that she gets back to where she wants to be.
I think she is counting the days until she is strong enough to leave the Amish again. I don't think it will be long. She is awfully bored, but her mind seems fine. She does remember all of you, and that is good. I took her a few letters that I had for her, from her friends in Ohio. I hope that will bring back even more memories, and yet not make her sad because she is where she is.
|The Bible Club - Rachel Arnold|
The Bible club reaches many people of all different ages across the United States and several other Countries. Through the program, students earn points by completing Bible lessons as well as bonus lessons. When a student reaches a certain amount of points (1000, 2000, 3000, and 4000 etc.…), the student becomes eligible for prizes. That is where I come in. My name is Rachel Arnold, a volunteer at MAP Ministries, and I have been sending prizes to students for a year and a half. I enjoy sending prizes to students who earn points through the Bible Club. God has laid it on my heart to help with this program as well as pray for the individuals who I send prizes too. It always amazes me to see each student get higher and higher in points until they reach the top!
Through MAP, I send prizes twice a month to students who complete a certain point level. For the first level, students earn a New Testament Bible. On average we send out 130 bibles a month. What an amazing thought to know that 130 individuals are getting to read God’s Word all over the United States on a monthly basis. That is 1,560 bibles a year!
A typical day for me at MAP consists of organizing a list of students who earned points for that mailing period. Not all the students on the list receive a prize that time around. I must first organize them into levels and then into age groups. We divide the students into groups such as 0-11 years of age and 12-up. After I organize the list, I make labels, attach them to envelopes, and then I make sure every student gets the right prize and right bonus sheet for their next lessons. Some of the prizes are, Bible bookmarks, balloons, erasers, key chains, ribbons, wallets, coloring books, and much more. On mailing week, I usually send out 187 different prizes. Our biggest month was after Christmas where I sent out over 400 prizes for the month!
Through volunteering at MAP I have been able to meet individuals who devote much of their time to this Ministry but most importantly are devoting their time to Christ. I volunteer to help in the spreading of God’s word. An amazing thought is that the Bible Club could reach individuals in every state in the U.S. Wouldn’t that be amazing?
The Bible Club is an amazing program that spreads the gospel. I am pleased to be part of a ministry that is so faithful in serving God as well as serving others.
“Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer” —Romans 12:12
|Adjusting from an Amish Community to English Society|
The ability to adjust to life outside Amish culture varies greatly from one individual to another and sect as well. That adjustment is hard in itself, not to include the condemnation heaped on those who have left.
The condemnation is not so direct, since you are out of communication from the old community, but you know it's there. Some members will now give you "The look" which is a condemnation in itself.
Huge decisions have to be made as soon as you land on the shores of this alien planet. What about education? Job? Drivers license? Health insurance, since you will not be covered by the old community. Do I need a living will? In case of death, who will bury you? Would you still want an Amish funeral? What church, if any, will you seek? Whose spiritual advice do you trust? Am I simply trading one set of rules for another? What is the proper way to date? (If you're single)
The truth of the matter is, very few are equipped to make any of these critical decisions right away. Up till now all these things were decided for you. If we look stunned for a while, try to understand. We are trying to find our way in an alien world. Your heart pounds within your chest as you try to make sense of all the choices. Did I just do or say something stupid? Different people give different advice. How do I know what to choose?
Just a few thoughts that come to mind as I recall the time of adjustment from years ago
|Serving the Lord - Dolly Robinson|
Portage Community Chapel (PCC) wants to thank MAP for the opportunity to minister with them. It was a blessing to us to mingle and fellowship with your staff and volunteers. As we folded, taped and labeled each of the 2000 newsletters, our hearts were moved for those to whom they were to be mailed. Our pastor's charge to us is "to get on your heart what God has on His heart - the world". This ministry is certainly in step with that and we are privileged to be a part of serving Him together with you and look forward to more opportunities in the days ahead!
Note: We appreciate the PPC group. They travel an hour and a half to get to MAP, and like so many other church groups who help out at MAP, they move large amounts of work in Jesus’ name.
Daniel is the son of am Amish Bishop in Michigan. When I was first connected with him, he was clearly searching for God and purpose in life.
His parents have already made it clear that he is not welcome at home, unless he repents and comes back to stay. He was told if there is a death or wedding in the family, he would not hear about it.
As we often do, we mailed him a package of CDs, a Bible and some Bible study materials. Secondly, we notified a pastor in his area, who will be helping Daniel out with his spiritual and physical needs. At the present time, he is attending a Catholic Church. Let’s pray for Daniel.
|Mount Vernon OH Bible Study - Eli Miller|
|MAP Has A Need|
|As MAP becomes more involved in making booklets, there is a need for us to have our own coil binding machine. After checking around for pricing, we have located the pictured machines for a ministry discounted price. One machine punches the holes and the other puts various sized coils in place. So far, we have always had to borrow someone else's machine, and at this point, we believe that MAP needs to get their own. Should the Lord burden you to get involved in giving to this project, please let us know.|
Hi Joe, Thanks so much for the DVD and CD’s. I very much enjoy them. My husband and I and our seven children left the Amish about 17 years ago, then we just felt we were lost. We just did a lot of partying—now my husband ended up in prison; he has been in there for almost 7 years now. We both turned to the Lord since. But I still have a lot of sad and hard days so I really need a lot of prayer.
Joe Keim, Greetings of Christian love. We are full of praise to God for your work, in the Amish Voice. We say Amen to it all and would really like to help you write more.
We are banned by the Amish, simply because we don’t agree with all their traditions, but want to live a life of common sense.
I would really like to share the common sense to our parents and brothers, but they won’t listen to me. So I think they must have a copy of the Amish Voice too. It’s hard for me to put my thoughts on paper in a sensible way, but I often tried to make some kind of writing to bring out the foolishness of some of their traditions. The one most on my mind is that they think they must dress in their suit and wear their “mutza” even if it’s warm. This style coat got so important; it must be worn even if it’s too warm. I have many writings that I wrote in my notebook. Wish I could share them with you, so you could get it worded in a simple and scriptural way.
I just want to encourage you and help you in any way I can. And please send a March issue of Amish Voice to the following: Thanks and may God bless you and your work.
|Activity Night - Katrina Zgela|
Every other Saturday evening, "Activity Night" takes place at Johnny and Miriam Keim's home near Ashland. They began hosting about three years ago as an outreach of MAP. Activity Night provides an opportunity for fellowship, building friendships and fun. It is also a wholesome environment for young people to have a good time on the weekends. Ping-pong, card games, movies, volleyball, snacks and good fellowship make the evening.
Enjoying the company of friends, old and new, is what defines Activity Night. We are called to refresh each other's spirits, and sometimes all that takes is sitting down together and having some fun. Being a refresher of others is a simple principle. We should all consider how we can practice hospitality, and then act on our ideas. There may be someone you know that needs a place where they can feel welcome and valued. An open door can be the key that opens a heart.
|Singing and Sharing - Joe Keim|
During the past two months, some of the young folks have had opportunities to go with me on ministry trips. As seen in this photo, they sang several songs in PA Dutch and shared their testimonies. They did tremendously well and the churches loved them.
|From WI to OH - Uriah Shetler|
Hi, my name is Uriah Shetler. You may have read about me in previous newsletters. I quit my farm job in Wisconsin, where I had worked for the past three years—the same farm where I heard the gospel and excepted Christ as my Lord and savior! Two days ago, I moved to the Ashland OH. Joe Keim is going to mentor me, as well help prepare me for ministry to the Amish people. I am excited about traveling with Joe and helping him share the need to reach Amish people for Christ. This weekend, we are going to Jersey Shore PA, where, Lord willing, I will be sharing my testimony.
I am still struggling with learning to give all of my life over to God. He showed me again last week that if we only give him a part of us, he can’t use us! He needs all of us.
I'm going for an interview for a farm job this morning! Thank you again for all the prayers on my behalf. —Uriah