July 4, 2023

Sometimes God Re-directs

Much has happened over the past couple of years!

I was thinking about our blog this morning and realized we never wrapped things up.  So, we'll do that now!

From the time I was just 13 years of age I felt God tugging at my heart towards missions.  In August of 1980 I answered God's call.  I said yes!  Ever since that time I have always thought I would serve as a missionary overseas for my entire life.  That decision determined my steps through my undergraduate studies at Mt Vernon Nazarene University, through medical school at the Medical College of Ohio at Toledo and through my pediatric residency at The Children's Hospital Medical Center of Akron.  It determined who I married! And finally, it determined our steps as a family to our assignment in the highlands of Papua New Guinea.  It has been an amazing adventure and God has been faithful all along the way!  We  have no regrets for the years of service there!  We feel blessed to have had the privilege!

A few years ago we, both Jeff and I, began feeling an increased yearning and need to return to the US in order to be available to our families. We believe God placed that yearning in our hearts and gradually prepared us for this change.  We turned in our letter of resignation as Global Missionaries with the Nazarene Church in January 2022.  We were both excited and heart broken. We were excited to return to the US and be near our family and see what God has for us here and heart broken at the prospect of saying goodbye to our friends, missionary family and home in PNG.  We held tightly, and still do, to the promise that God is always with us and has a plan for us!  He is faithful!

We began our service as missionaries for the Nazarene Church on Jan 1, 2001 and completed our service on Dec 31, 2022 thus a full 22 years.  God has been so faithful!  The adjustment to life in the US has been gradual and is not yet complete.  The process of grieving the loss of our life in and call to PNG isn't over.  But, again, God is faithful!

We each have a vehicle to drive and have begun employment.  We are looking for a house.  We are renewing old acquaintances and making new friends. It's a process and we are constantly reminding ourselves that it takes time and...God is faithful!

Thank you to those who have been praying for us and who have loved and supported us over the years!  None of us are intended to travel this journey alone. We are grateful to each of you and to our Faithful Father for traveling with us!

Please continue to support the work in Papua New Guinea through your prayers and giving! And please remember us in your prayers as the Lord brings us to your minds!


Jeffrey and Susan

May 25, 2021

Back at it in PNG

Back at it in PNG!  Traveling, as anyone who has tried to travel internationally in the past few months, is a challenge!  But, once again, God paved the way and we arrived back safely to our home in the Highlands of PNG on April 20th.  We then were required to quarantine in our home for 14 days.  That was actually much easier than when we last quarantined in our capitol city in a hotel for those required 14 days! So, we have now had time to get into the routine of station life and work at the hospital and, for Jeff, with the various Field related assignments.

Before we move into this next term though, let's recap the past few months since our last blog.  Ya know, this Home Assignment was quite different then the previous 7 we've done. Covid affected most everything for everyone.  We didn't travel nearly as much as we have in the past which had both positive and negative points.  We didn't get to meet as many wonderful Nazarenes as we usually do which is a bit sad.  But we did get to spend more time with our family, helping out where we could and that was a blessing and we are thankful for those times! God knows what each one of needs and when!

We spoke at several nearby churches in February including Calvary Nazarene in Canton, Shepherd's Hill Nazarene in Louisville and the Little Country Church in Waynesburg!  At the Little Country Church they were not yet holding indoor services but instead had a great "little church" where the speaker/leaders stood, protected from the weather, and shared while all the attendees were in their cars picking up the broadcast on the radio!  Everything worked great!  And we were protected from the rain!     

Long age before coming to the field we lived in Bolivar, Ohio and I worked in Dover.  One of things I most enjoyed was getting to know the families I cared for in my practice, particularly those I had an outside connection with such as within the church.  One such young man, he was just a baby when I met him, is Richie.  Richie is all grown up now and married and is on staff at our home church, New Philadelphia Naz.  Richie's talents and passions involve filming, producing and all things related!  And he is good at it!  Anyway, Richie offered his services to record our VIDEO PRESENTATION in order that we could share from a distance with the churches we had scheduled to speak at but due to Covid were not able to travel to.  We thank you again Richie, for your expertise and patience as we recorded several different lengths/versions of our presentation.  If you are reading this blog and you are interested in using any of those versions for yourself personally or in your church please DO NOT HESITATE!  Drop us an email and we will make those available to you.  In these days, getting missionaries to your area may be a bit tricky and we would love to help out in this way!

The recorded presentation allowed us to share with Grace Point Nazarene in Gambrills, MD and on the New England District in March and April.  We also got to visit several churches on our home district, East Ohio, during a March tour and then at Sparta Nazarene in Michigan.

Yes, God is soooo good and soooo faithful!  We have much to be thankful for!  Susan got to have a mother-daughter weekend with Jessica and we had several overnight's at Ethan and Abby's house.  We enjoyed lunch pretty much weekly with Susan's parents and many visits with Jeff's folks as well.  We even got to enjoy our nephew Isaac's senior recital at ONU and have gotten to know our 1 great nephew on the Myers/Lee side of the family!

Myers/Lees at Mansfield, OH carousel.
Isaac's Senior Recital at ONU

Take care, friends!

Again, if you have an interest in our video presentation please let us know! We can provide a link for you.

Jeff and Susan 

February 9, 2021

Update on God's provisions and more

Hey all!!

First and foremost, thank you so much for your prayers on our behalf!  God answered our prayers for safe travel!  We left PNG on the 3rd of December as planned, and arrived in Canton, OH as scheduled...just 55 hrs after we left our home in Kudjip, PNG!! God is good!  God also provided us a car to use through our dear friends, Jim and Kathy!!  So again, thank you for your prayers!

Hard to believe we have already been home for 9 wks and 4 days!  We enjoyed some very special times with family over the holidays and beyond.  Snow for Christmas was a welcome treat, too!! Also, we were able to celebrate Jeff, Susan and Jessica's Birthdays together in person and will celebrate Ethan's this week! We never get tired of being with our family!    

Our deputation trail began on Jan 10th at Troy Church of the Nazarene where our daughter Jessica is on staff.  We had a lovely time there!  And came away with an open invitation to pickleball which we took advantage of the following week!!  Yay!!!

Next we traveled to Winchester, IN where we enjoyed good services and a very nice time getting to know the pastor along with Rosie after the service. Rosie and her mom have put together countless warm baby packets for Nazarene Hospital over the past 8 yrs or so.  What a blessing they have been to so many newborn babies in the highlands in PNG!!  Thanks, Rosie and Louise!

In the evening we had the pleasure of visiting Pastor Max and Leona Downs and our Franklin CON Family in IN.  We had a great time re-uniting with these wonderful friends!

Jan 24th we were at our home church, New Philadelphia CON!  Love being with all of them!  They have been amazing to us over the years in sharing their love and support and we are incredibly thankful! 

Next we made a quick, long trip to Florida the last week of  January and so very much enjoyed time with our Indiana snow bird friends, Mike and Carla and then our long time friends Steve and Lezlie.  Again, God is so good!  These friends are such a source of encouragement to us.  Hopefully, they were able to sense our appreciation and love for them as well!

Finally, yesterday morning we were at Canton Calvary CON not far from where we call home while stateside. We had several family members and long time friends in attendance which is always a treat!  Thank you all for welcoming us!

Please continue to pray for Nazarene Hospital in these days.  We remain short of doctors.  As time away, thru Home Assignment or vacation, is needed it does leave those left behind short-staffed.  Everyone was thrilled to finally be able to get some help into PNG through a short-term volunteer and friend, Dr. James and a new doc planning to stay for the next two years, Dr. Daniel into the country recently. The needs will continue as some of us long termers return and others then take their time away.  Pray for strength of body and mind as we move forward and for continued discernment of God's leading.

Thank you all! Many blessings!

Jeff and Susan

November 21, 2020

Near ready to Fly the Friendly Skies once again!

Wow!  This has been quite a year!  BUT, our God remains faithful!!  Yes?  Forever and always we can count on Him.  

Like many of you our schedule and plans have changed repeatedly throughout the year.  Included in that was a shift in our Home Assignment.  We have just confirmed our flights to the US and Lord willing, we will depart PNG on Dec 3rd (your Dec 2nd evening) and arrive in Canton, OH late on Dec 4th.  We will have the special joy of spending time with family, as much as COVID 19 will allow, thru the end of the month and then begin sharing what God has been doing in PNG with wonderful folks in Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Maryland and on the New England District.  If you have a need or desire for a couple of PNG missionaries to share with your group, drop us a line!  We would love to connect! 

We would love to have you partner with us in praying for several specific needs we have.  Would you do that for us?  There's nothing like knowing your brothers and sisters are going before The Throne on your behalf. AND. God hears our prayers!

Prayer Requests:

1) Flights to and from PNG are few under the world's current conditions.  We were only able to confirm our tickets this morning.  We will be traveling west, the long way around the globe, to get home this time. Please pray that our flights will not be cancelled and that we will safely arrive in the US as per our itinerary.

2) We are in need of a vehicle to drive during this time home. God has always provided this need and we are confidant He has a plan in place even now.  If you think you might be part of His plan in one way or another please let us know. 

3) Pray for us to be sensitive to God's leading in exactly what He would like us to share and how He would like us to share it in the various services we have scheduled.

4) Pray for safety as we travel about to the various churches we have scheduled and for flexibility during this ongoing pandemic.  Pray for wisdom in knowing when we need to make adjustments and for creativity in connecting with churches where face-to-face gathering may not be possible. 

4) The purpose of a Home Assignment is multifaceted.  Our primary goal is to help people in our churches to connect with what God is doing around the world, specifically in PNG for us.  We hope to excite you for missions!  Another goal is to recruit prayer support.  The work and ministry that happens here in PNG through the Nazarene Church all belongs to God!  And God works through your prayers!  Finally, we receive deputation offerings that allow us to continue to do what we believe God has called us to do. Pray for people to be open to how God directs in this important area.

Thank you so much for partnering with us!!

Blessings on all of you!

Jeff and Susan

February 18, 2020

Nazarene College of Nursing

Mogry, he was one of our kids, and a great guy!

One of the blessing these past couple of years has been our involvement with the "Big Brother Big Sister" program that the College of Nursing has as part of their nursing program.  We started out with 5 nursing students and over the last 2 or so years we had some graduate and gained another one or two along the way.   We  have watched Christian movies with them and we have played games with them.   I will say once they understand the game, they are gamers!   They are truly great kids!  

In January the College of Nursing held their annual retreat for the 3rd year students.   The nursing program is a three year program so these kids will be graduating at the end of February.    Susan and I were asked by the Nursing College chaplain, Andrew, if we would come and speak about God's will.  Wow!  That is a serious topic to share with the these kids who are soon graduating.   After praying about it and thinking about it,  I read a couple of books to get my thinking flowing.   One was by John MacArthur and Charles Stanley.  We also included our own personal testimonies on how we came to be missionaries in PNG these past 18 years and the preparation it took to get here.   God spoke to the hearts of these young people who will be going out all across PNG to serve in clinics and hospitals.   Ministering to the sick and hurting and in some cases ministering to those in need of spiritual healing.   We thank our heavenly Father for this opportunity to share with these precious young adults.   Please pray for them as they prepare for their future in nursing that God would use them and protect them as they move out across PNG.

The 3rd years who will graduate at the end of February.

April 19, 2019

Change, change, change

So much has happened since our last post, it's hard to know where to start! I'll try to give a brief synopsis.  And since I like lists, I am going to make one!.
1) The kids that went to Pt. Moresby for heart caths did great!  One of them needs a little different something to fix her defect and will be returning to Moresby on May 6th.  Her name is Neola.  Pray for her and this upcoming procedure. Two kids have traveled to the US for heart surgery.  They both did well!!  More info on that in a another article!  😀
2) Our HA was awesome!  We met so many wonderful people in our travels!  We love the Nazarene Church and it's people!  Thank you all!  We were able to visit God's people in Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Missouri, Alabama, Texas, Florida and California!  Thank you all!!!  We hope that we have been able to ignite or fan the flames of your fire for missions and challenge you to consider what God has for you to do next for and in His Kingdom!

Dr. Steph served in PNG a few years back.

Steph now serves with her husband Andy here!

Our dear friends pastoring in FL

Re-uniting with former PNG missionaries Andy & Judy 

3) We had the wonderful privilege of celebrating Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years with our families for the first time since 2008!!  That was awesome!!
Ma & Pa Myers

Jeff's sister and Mama

Mom & Dad Cummings

Cousins for Christmas dinner

Ohio - winter wonderland!

4) We had amazing times with our kids.  It never feels like enough but we soaked up as much as we could!  We are so very thankful for God's gift to us in the way of our children.  We love them both dearly!  Pray for them as they continue to seek God's will for their lives!

Indians Game in Cleveland!

My most favorite girl in the world, hands down!

5) We got to spend some time with Abby Wagner who is now Ethan's fiancé!  Wow!!  She and Ethan are planning an August wedding!  We were able to meet her family and enjoyed that very much! Abby is a lovely girl and we look forward to future days of getting to know her better!   
The proposal!

6) Jeff, unfortunately, was sick with head cold/sinus infection in the weeks just prior to our departure and it was only after returning to PNG that we recognized some symptoms that were beyond what was consistent with his illness.  We made a trip to Cairns, Australia and found that he experienced a dissection of his internal carotid artery on the right side of his head/neck.   We are extremely thankful for God's hand of protection upon him.  The end result could have been devastating...but it was not!!  PTL!!
7)  We arrived back in PNG just in time to say good-bye to 2 amazing missionary families.  The McCoys retired in January.  We have so enjoyed serving alongside them for the past 18 yrs.  We love them and they are already missed by many.  Then just last month the Dooleys returned to the US, following the direction God has laid on their hearts.  Their departure was expedited as a result of Scott's mother being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.  Scott served as our Hospital Administrator and Gail was involved in hospital ministry as well.  They, too, are missed greatly!  We do thank God for the many years we were able to walk the journey with them here in PNG.
We've served together since their arrival in 2003!

McCoys served in PNG since 1996!

8) With departures there is a necessary shift in responsibilities.  For this reason, I am back in administration serving as Director of Medical Services and very soon will also attempt to cover the position of Hospital Administrator as well while Dr. Erin gets a much needed break on her HA.  Thankfully, we have an amazing national administrative team and together, with the Lord's strength and direction, we will continue to move forward for the Kingdom!
9) We have a new mission family who just arrived for Australia.  Beautiful family with 5 children, 4 boys and one sweet little girl!  Dave is a pediatrician and is joining our staff at Nazarene Hospital.
The Lean Family

Those are most of the big changes!   Some are fun and exciting and others are a bit more challenging but alas, God knows the future and we can and will count on Him to show us the way!
Thank you so much for your continued support through prayer and giving!  God has blessed us by allowing us to be a part of His team and His work here in PNG and you are an important part of the team as well!!  

November 27, 2018

Follow up on our heart patients

Being on the other side of the earth makes it sometimes hard to get info quickly!  With regard to the children that went to Pt Moresby a couple of weeks ago for heart caths I do know that the first 3 caths that were done went well!  The first procedure was done on a little guy named Caleb who had a Patent Ductus Arteriosus.  Everything went well!  Very exciting!!!
The next two patients were both in children who had Tetrology of Fallot, a more complicated heart defect. Both of these children have proven to be good candidates for open heart surgery in the US next year!  Again, extremely exciting!
Please continue to pray for all the children who went to Pt Moresby along with their families.  Thanks to Dr. Kirk's team and all those involved at Pacific International Hospital in Pt Moresby!

When I can get some pics, I'll add them above!

Extremely Thankful!

Fall foliage in PA
Jeff and I are feeling extremely blessed and thankful...for just everything!!
It's hard to believe but our Home Assignment has flown by and before we know it we will be boarding a plane headed back to PNG.  Our time home has been amazing!  We have met many wonderful people in California, Ohio, Indiana, Missouri, Illinois, Alabama and Florida and in a few days we expect the same in Texas!  God's people are awesome and the Nazarene family everywhere we go truly does feel like family! Thank you to all who have made our time in the US very special.  Thank you for your hospitality, love, generosity and prayers!  
Felt right at home in Raytown, MO!
We are just coming away from a wonderful Thanksgiving time with both sides of the family and with both of our kids at our sides as well! The week before Thanksgiving we also had a Cummings family gathering which included most of that part of our tribe, too!  It was great!
Our Thanksgiving weekend was topped off with the privilege of speaking at the Troy Church of the Nazarene where Jessica is on staff!  It was heart warming to see our girl in action as she shared her Pidgin speaking skills in a pre-recorded video spot, sang with the Worship Team, introduced us in the main service and then had us join her Sunday School group where we had another opportunity to connect and share about PNG!  We are very proud of Jessica and the amazing young lady she is!  Her church family has looked after our girl so well for which we are very grateful and thankful! God is good!!
Trussville Hispanic Fair, Alabama

Jessica with worship team at Troy Nazarene
Beautiful in spite of the cold!
Boca Grande Light House

November 12, 2018

Heart procdures in PNG this week!

These are exciting days in PNG!  Please be praying for the 8 children/young adults and their parents who will be flying down from Mt Hagen, the closest commercial airport to Nazarene Hospital, to our capitol city of Pt Moresby where they will undergo heart caths this week!
There are not a lot of options for children in PNG to get help if they are born with or later develop a heart problem that requires intervention beyond medications.  A number of years ago we were privileged to have Dr. Kirk, a pediatric cardiologist from the US, come to our hospital.  Kirk along with a team that he has assembled will be in Pt Moresby this week at the only hospital that has a heart
One of our heart patients!  
He is going to feel so much better 
by the end of the week!  
cath lab.  Six of our patients will have procedures done to cure or improve their heart function and 2 will be further assessed by heart cath to determine whether they will be good candidates for open heart surgery next year.  
Please pray for Neola, Mark, Ashla, Roselyn, Caleb, Wom, Lydia, and Petrick along with Mr. Lash who will travel with the kids and their parents to Pt Moresby and Dr. Kirk, his team from the US and the staff at the hospital in Moresby who will be assisting in many ways in order to make things happen!!

September 25, 2018

New PNG Church Plant

We  just returned from Platue, Nipa over the weekend. [Nazarene] College of Nursing preaching point out reach, has moved into a new place, called Topua. This is the 2nd preaching point, the first church [that NCON] started several years ago will be hand over to [the] Southern Highlands District on the 22nd of this month. This new preaching point is my late wife's uncle's village. The door has opened and 45 souls came for the 2nd service. The first  service was held about two weeks ago and about 25 people attended.  We began to see that this district has potential for the holiness message to be spread as more calls coming from many place.

We see that The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. "Lets Ask the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest field"

W.Kintak -Principle of the Nazarene College of Nursing