Frances Blog

Welcome to Frances Blog page.

Here you will find updates and progress report posts related to Frances Swaray mission in Liberia. 

Newsletter – August 2019

By Michael Allsop | Aug 22, 2019 |

Newsletter – August 2019

Reflection from Frances

Learning to love how God loves….I am learning to love the person in front of me regardless of my own pre conceived ideas or notions. Despite sometimes the noticeable differences in culture, traditions, values or norms. Regardless of my own fears or insecurities that can rise out of all those differences. And at the same time I am learning to love myself, the way God made me and not resent, despise or dislike those things that God has created on purpose because it is for a purpose. We are all uniquely created.

What is really our notion of mission? Sometimes I think it can be more about our journey rather than those God has called you to serve. Why do I say this? I say this because he continually turns me upside down and inside out. Asking me to take leaps of faith when I can’t see were my feet are going to land. He continually takes away those things I love until I am empty so He can fill me with his treasures.

Perhaps an unexpected treasure from God is the courage. Sometimes it is not always comfortable, or seen. Sometimes it is just the courage to keep persisting, keep pressing on, keep focusing, and sometimes simply placing one foot in front of the other.

God’s Wonderful Treasures

Donegal Presbyterian Church TKT
  • Love and support in a barren place
  • Peace in the midst of an unstable environment
  • Contentment with the little
  • Deep joy at the innovativeness of others
  • Faithfulness from the prayer

A BIG THANK YOU!

Climbing the Heights and Riding the Lows

We want to say a big thank you to Jim and Margaret Morrow who organized a fundraiser for us this year and those in our Donegal family and community who supported them through giving generously and accompanying him on the mountain climbs.

It was aptly named ‘Climbing the heights and riding the lows’ a real reflection of life. They conquered three mountains on a journey that took them from County Kerry back home to County Donegal. A massive €5,740.45 euro was raised and a real blessing to our work in Liberia.

Climbing the Heights and riding the lows

Update from Liberia

Before I left we had facilitated an all day workshop on wholeness and personal development for Liberian leaders who are the partner organisations of ‘Kvinna till Kvinna’ an organization that work with vulnerable and disadvantaged women.

We had also started facilitating workshops for our local clinic staff on spiritual, physical and emotional health. When I return I will focus on mental health with them and in the meantime Momo is going to do a Trauma Healing Group with them. Momo has been leading the work of The Koinonia Trust since January as President and he has not just embraced the vision but continues to embrace new ideas and has been a huge support to me.

The Koinonia Trust Newsletter The Koinonia Trust Newsletter

He is working hard developing the education project for young people and the study and reading classes will be commencing in September. At the moment he is preparing the training week for the four graduates who will be supervising the classes. We are grateful to The Irish Embassy/Irish Aid who is supporting this project.

Frances Prayer Points

  • Pray for those who we engage with, that we love them as God loves them and that they would be strengthened in their spiritual walk with God. For those who do not have a relationship with God that they would come to know Him in a personal way. Pray that we will be givers of grace and that we will look for the beauty in the ashes.
  • Continue to pray for Momo as he leads the work that God would strengthen him, guide him and give him wisdom.
  • Pray for Liberia it is unsettled and unstable in some areas that is causing additional suffering to an already hurting nation. Pray that a righteous army of God would rise up and stand in the gap for the nation. That there would be Godly heart and mind transformations from the community right up to the government.
  • Pray for me as I advocate for The Koinonia Trust and the work that it is doing. Pray God will open doors and I find favor with God and man.
  • Pray for the students that will come for the study classes that we will be able to share the love of Christ with them.
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Newsletter – 17th May

By Michael Allsop | May 17, 2019 |

Newsletter from Momo B. Kinnie

New Community

We are settling well into our new community. We have met some of the local community to discuss who the community leaders are and if there is anything we can do as an organization to support them. The suggestion has come back that once they are organised they would like to be trained in leadership skills and community development. At the moment we have been able to facilitate ongoing workshops in our local clinic within our community. This has been a great opportunity and is a gateway into our local area.

Trauma Healing Groups

  • We have been facilitating trauma healing groups and to date seventy five (75) people have completed sessions of the trauma healing program in various areas in Liberia.
  • We have a trauma healing group ongoing in the compound we are living in.
Koinonia Trust Trauma Healing Groups

Personal Development Workshops

These workshops are aimed at building personal capacity and focused on increasing knowledge regarding the aspects of health, how they are interlinked and the impact they have on us; spiritual/emotional/mental/physical and social. We have been developing these workshops based on observations and needs. Before we can expect behavior change there is the need of transformation in hearts and minds. This is going to take time.

Our latest project

We have been busy making two blackboards and it has been so impressive what these young men are able to do with the few resources they have.

Koinonia Trust Liberia Koinonia Trust Liberia

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Frances Update 14th April

By Michael Allsop | Apr 14, 2019 |

Blessed are those who trust in the Lord…. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they go right on producing delicious fruit.”- Jeremiah 17:7-8

Frances Blog - Update

I continue to learn to trust God in every situation and circumstance.  I want to be this tree that no matter what storm or gust of wind blows on me I stand strong because my roots are firmly imbedded in God. I desire that I continue to produce fruit because of an unshakeable faith and trust in Him.

Today I thank God for reminding me of this verse and as I mediate upon it may it be food not only for my soul but a testimony of my life

 

Last night I arrived in Ganta in Nimba and I rejoice in the cooler climate.  Each day this week I will be facilitating trauma healing groups. A group of women in the morning and a group of men in the afternoon. Please pray for those who will be participating that they would find relieve for their hearts and rest from the burdens they have been carrying.

Please do pray for Momo as he is also out.  His church has an Easter conference and he is further North and in the bush. He will also be facilitating a Trauma healing group for leaders each day.  Pray that God will set the captives free and heal the brokenhearted.

Please pray for those we left behind in the compound that God will keep them safe while we are out.

Thank you for your love, devotion and prayers

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Newsletter – 8th March

By Michael Allsop | Mar 8, 2019 |

Dearest Brothers and Sisters

Greetings from sunny Liberia. I give thanks to God for His continued blessing to us here. I have settled well back into Liberian culture and it is getting much easier each time. We really praise God for our new home and I brought an extra suitcase full of bits and pieces to help create a cosy and comfortable place of refuge for us. I am happy that I did for we are all happy and blessed to enjoy the comforts and luxuries of pictures and decorations for the walls. These things are not too common here in most people’s homes.

Here the priority is putting food on the table and sending children to school. Every day is a struggle for the majority of people to do just those basic things. I see people selling their small bits and pieces sitting in the sun till early evening just to provide for their children. Every evening around 5.30pm when the sun starts to go down we go for a walk and I buy my fruit from several of the women I am getting to know. My heart is truly moved as I watch them work so hard just to make sure their children have an opportunity to learn to become someone tomorrow.

Several of the neighbors came and helped us to paint and move our furniture in. It was a joy to be blessed by their kindness and generosity. We moved everything from the houses by Kekeh a tricycle I am so sorry I did not take any photos for indeed it was a miracle in itself. I was too busy unpacking the suitcases for them to refill!!!!

Frances Blog - The Koinonia Trust Compound Front Yard Frances Blog - The Koinonia Trust Back Yard Frances Blog - The Koinonia Trust Intended Offices and Pastoral Care Room

I have been reading in Ephesians 4 verses 1-3 were Paul reminds us of how we should walk.

I was challenged as I read it and took out the dictionary to examine the key words.

Humility…  that we are to think of others more and ourselves less,

Gentle…  to be kind,  mild mannered and tender.

Patience…. To have the capacity to accept delays, trouble or suffering without getting angry or upset.   To bear….  to carry and support each other in love,

Eager…. keen and enthusiastic

As we maintain unity. It is indeed a challenge to walk in this way worthy of our calling which each of us have but this is what we are commanded to do.

Thank you for all the prayers we know God is working in wonderful ways.

You can read Frances updated Pray Requests by clicking here.

 

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Newsletter – 6th February

By Michael Allsop | Feb 9, 2019 |

Philippians ch 4:14

“I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”

God has consistently reminded me that it is by faith and not sight we are called. By faith Abram left the familiar, his family, his home and journeyed to the unknown in order for his descendants to receive their inheritance. It was by faith Noah build the first boat ever and in the middle of a desert.  Surely too these men had many unanswered questions. Noah, like Abram, simply obeyed. Thanks to him the human race still exists today and his boat design is still deemed to be the best design for to survive a storm. These men are an inspiration to me as I continue to step out in faith.

Last year was challenging with many storms and many things to learn however God proved His faithfulness. We have a God who is faithful and I have learnt that as we keep our eyes focused on Him, He brings us through. As I trust Him regardless of the circumstances He supplies me with a peace that transcends all understanding.

This year as I return God reminds me that in His strength I can do all things. I remind you also no matter what you are facing, the pain you are going through or the anxiety you have if you release them to God and trust Him He can take those burdens and give you peace instead.

Frances Blog Trauma Healing Frances Newsletter Frances Newsletter

Answers to Prayer in 2018

  • We thank God for all the wonderful things that He did last year, the locals who were trained as apprentice Trauma Healing Facilitators, and the children who attended the camp, those who were helped with their education or social enterprise. Those who were supported through mentoring or training workshops.
  • We thank God for His provision enabling me to go back as a volunteer and to support the work that has started
  • We give thanks to God for continuing to open the doors of opportunity to minister in Liberia
  • We thank God for the new compound were we will live and have our work base

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