Tenth Fiji Report

I have been in Suva since Saturday afternoon.  On Sunday I met with the Dean of the Anglican Cathedral and we talked about the state of the church in Fiji.  Unfortunately much that plagues the church in the U.S. is also present here as well.  But this man is an evangelical Christian and a man of prayer.  I’ll meet with him and some of his staff this coming Thursday at noon for prayer and to discuss opportunities for TUtP to minister in gatherings of clergy during future visits.

On Monday I met with the Viti Resource Landowners Association (VRLA) at Ratu Osea’s house.  This is the group with whom we are cooperating in our beekeeping and agricultural projects.  I brought them up to date on the outcome of our clinics in the Lomawai region.  I also let them know the impact the California draught was having on our ability to bring over our beekeeping team.  They need to know the potential difficulties we will be facing should the drought continue.

Seniloli is a member of the VRLA and so I had opportunity to meet with her and go with her to the Hibiscus Festival at Albert Park in Suva to visit the women’s craft fare.  Over the past two years I have been working with some business students from Azusa Pacific University who want to be involved in helping indigenous people develop better income in their skill areas.  Seniloli is a much respected older woman who teaches traditional craft to younger Fijian women and tries to assist them in design and marketing.  Last year I brought about $500 worth of items from some of her students for the APU students to sell.  We are attempting to establish ongoing relationships between students and crafters to build their income and to help them manage their businesses more successfully.

This morning I had breakfast with Peter Schulz.  Peter and his wife are from New Zealand.  I first met them in 2007.  Peter conducts the only prison ministry in Fiji and has had a great deal of success since TUtP brought Freedom in Christ staff in 2009 to do training sessions in Suva.  The impact of the FIC training transformed the prison ministry and the results have been phenomenal.  Peter was telling me how many Muslim and Hindu men have come to Jesus in prison as a result of this ongoing ministry.  He has been challenged by the authorities to begin to minister to men more directly after they are released from prison, so I am connecting him with some folks in Suva who can forward his ministry goals.  I will also make contact with the FIC team in the States to come back and take the program to the next level of effectiveness.

My schedule for the remaining days in Suva is rapidly filling and I’m not likely to be able to meet with everyone I would like to.  That’s the case most of the time.  I have yet to reach Dr. Joe Koriovuata and Dr. Eric, but hope they will be able to return calls soon.  Elections are coming in Fiji  within 30 days, and I’m quite certain their plates are very full as they are Deputy Secretary for Social Services and Deputy Secretary of Health.  Still, it would be great to see them again during this trip.

Please continue to pray.  I very much depend upon your sustaining intercession.

Thanks and Blessings!