The future holds no fear for the child of God resting in His promises and grace. As our family trusts the Lord to continue to lead and direct us, I wanted to lay out the plans we are making for the future. Our goal is to arrive in the Philippines in May 2019 in order to launch Haven of Grace Seminary in June 2019. Our arrival in the Philippines is determined by two controlling factors:
- Birth of Baby Valiante – Lord willing, we will greet our new baby in May 2018. We felt that it would be beneficial for Sarah, the new baby, and the rest of the family to wait to travel overseas until everyone has a chance to get acclimated.
- Filipino School Year – The Filipino summer is April and May with most schools beginning sometime in the month of June. Since the seminary is an educational institution, it makes sense to launch the seminary at the beginning of the school year.
Based on our deputation experience thus far, we are very hopeful to have all of our support raised by May 2019. We have been raising support for only four months and currently stand at 41% of our needed support. Additionally, there are a number of churches that have expressed a desire to support our family who have yet to formally vote on us.
With regard to the seminary, we are already making preparations for the programs we will offer. God has been so good to direct us to godly men who have experience in theological training abroad to offer support and counsel as we lay out everything from our philosophy to the degrees offered. Mark Kittrell, Dr. Curt Lamansky and I recently had an extremely productive planning session to begin constructing a program that will provide the most effective platform to train Filipinos for ministry. To say I am excited would be an understatement!
Looking even further ahead, after we are on the field, we have plans return to the States every April and May. Since these are the summer months in the Philippines, the seminary will not be in session. This will allow us to report back to our supporting churches, and raise any additional support needed without having to be away from the work at the seminary for an entire year every four or five years.
At this time, I want to thank each of you who have prayed for us, as well as those who have sacrificially supported our family over these months. We are confident that Haven of Grace Seminary will be used greatly by God for the furtherance of the Gospel, not just in the Philippines, but all throughout Southeast Asia. We are humbled by the opportunity to equip and train national pastors in the Philippines.