Category: Sending
June 13, 2017 by Kelly Samson

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Relevant,

Thank you for your prayers for and financial investment into Safe Haven Orphanage. God is using your sacrificial generosity and prayers to make a huge impact in the lives of the children and staff at Safe Haven! Check out this month’s update…

 

Last month’s Global Impact Sunday

 

On Sunday, May 21st, we celebrated the work that God has been doing in and through Relevant in the lives of Karen people through the Global Impact ministry and looked ahead to where we believe God is leading us in the next year. In case you missed it, check out the 2017 Global Impact Update video we shared here.

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Foster/Social Care Worker Certification

 

Over the past several months, Tasanee and Safe Haven have been going through a process for Safe Haven to be a registered “foster care house”. As Tasanee explains it, among other benefits, this designation would enable Safe Haven to continue to be home to and support children living at the orphanage who are over age 18 and who are still going to school in the local village. In May, Tasanee completed the Community Social Development Volunteer training, which is a big step forward in the credentialing process for Safe Haven to become a “foster house”!

 

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(Above: Tasanee pictured second from the right)

 

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(Tasanee’s certificate for completion of the Community Social Development Volunteer training course)

 

Screen printing

 

A couple months ago, some of the children went for training to learn how to screen print as a source of income during their break from school. Here is one of the kids at work and one of their completed products!

 

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Learning English

Recently, Safe Haven hosted a volunteer teacher who spent time teaching all of the Safe Haven staff English. Many of those at Safe Haven hope to continuing learning more and more English.

 

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Umbrellas!

It is officially rainy season in Thailand. Now that the rain has begun to fall, the kids needed umbrellas. Because of the generosity of Relevant and other sponsors, each child received an umbrella!

 

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Birthday Celebration

 

Safe Haven had a special birthday celebration for the children, including a nice meal enjoyed by all.

 

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Prayer Requests

 

Pray for Tasanee and Safe Haven and the ongoing foster care registration process. Praise God that Tasanee was able to complete and pass the examination for the community social development volunteer training. Pray for God’s favor as Safe Haven continues the foster care registration process, which will allow Safe Haven to help more and more children. Pray that through this, Safe Haven’s impact for Jesus in Thailand and Burma will be expanded.

 

Pray for the health, safety, and well-being of all those at Safe Haven and in Thailand/Burma throughout rainy season. Pray for God’s protection in Thailand and Burma during this time of year, when dangerous and sometimes devastating floods occur.

 

- Pray for the children at Safe Haven. Pray that God continues to provide for them in every way they need…for their basic needs of food, clothing, and shelter, for their physical health, education, and most importantly for their spiritual growth, that each child will come to put their faith in Jesus by asking Him to be the Forgiver of their sins and Leader of their life.

 

 

 

2 Corinthians 9:8 (NLT) “And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.”

 

 

 

May 15, 2017 by Relevant

 

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Thank you for your ongoing prayers for and financial investment into Safe Haven Orphanage. Through this year’s Safe Haven sponsorship and 212 commitments, Relevant will be able to provide for over half of Safe Haven’s annual budget!

 

BACK TO SCHOOL!

 

Today, the kids at Safe Haven headed back for the start of a new school year! In Thailand, the school year begins in May and ends in March. Check out photos below of the kids heading back to school photos and the new school uniforms Safe Haven was able to purchase for the children, with the help of our financial support.

 

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school uniforms

 

CELEBRATING “BIG MOM”

 

Tasanee shared ,“My life is for the children. I always remember these words that one of the kids told me, ‘Big Mom, I am very lucky that I have you, Big Mom. If I didn’t have you, Big Mom, I don’t know how my life would be.’”

 

She went on to say “My work is hard and difficult sometimes, but I have to keep going to take care of these children. I would love to thank you for your donations and support. Because of your love and kindness, the children are growing one by one. I’m thankful that we can continue to work together to help the children grow up, have a good future, and then the children can help other people as they have been helped.”

 

Happy Mother’s Day to Tasanee (Big Mom), a wonderful and amazing mom to all of the children at Safe Haven!

 

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UPDATE ON TASANEE’S MOM

 

Last month, Tasanee’s mom mother was sick and in the hospital. We’ve been praying for her healing, after she required surgery to remove gallstones. Tasanee asked to pass along this message: “Send my big love and many, many thanks to all of Relevant Community Church for praying for my mom. Now, she is better. In just a few days, the doctors will take out the last tubes.”

 

 

OUTDOOR WORK

 

Rainy season is just around the corner. With that being the case, Tasanee, the kids, and staff at Safe Haven have been busy. This month, they’ve been working hard to plant some of the seasonal vegetables, as well as preparing for annual flooding expected once rainy season hits by building sandbag barriers.

 

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PRAYER REQUESTS

 

Pray for the children as they head back to school. That they will be able to understand their schoolwork and lessons, learn, focus, be diligent in their studies, and be a light for Jesus at their schools.

 

Pray for Tasanee. Praise God for the amazing “Big Mom” she is to all of the children at Safe Haven and all that she does for them. Pray that God will sustain her and give her wisdom, strength, patience, and perseverance for each day as she cares for the children and fulfills her role as director of Safe Haven.

 

Pray for the health, safety, and wellbeing of all those at Safe Haven and in Thailand/Burma throughout rainy season. With rainy season often comes flooding, which can be potentially dangerous and devastating to some areas of Thailand and Burma. Pray for God’s protection over these nations and people as rainy season begins this month and runs through late September. Pray for Tasanee’s mom continued recovery from surgery.

 

 

Zechariah 2:5 “And I myself will be a wall of fire around it,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will be its glory within.’”

 

April 27, 2017 by Relevant

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Relevant,

Thank you for your prayerful and financial support of Safe Haven Orphanage! God is truly using your sacrificial generosity and prayers to make a huge impact in the lives of the children and staff at Safe Haven! Check out this month’s update!

 

 

A Video Message and Note From Tasanee

 

View a special video message to Relevant from Safe Haven Orphanage’s founder, Tasanee, played at this past Sunday’s gathering, here:

 

We also received a note from Tasanee that we’d like to share with you…

 

I would love to thank you very much for your love and your kindness. I am so happy that I have met the good people at Relevant Community Church. Since you visit and support the orphanage, the children and I have a better life, good food, and a good education. Safe Haven Orphanage can now help the children develop more life skills and musical skills too. The children are singing and playing the guitar and trying to learn more music. With Relevant’s support, Safe Haven is able to help children and families [in the nearby village] who need help. The children are growing up, and every year Safe Haven gets more and more children. It makes me so happy and appreciative to be able to help children. I have had bad back pain for nearly a month. Even though I’m in so much pain right now, it’s not stopping me from helping the children. God called me to give my life to help children, and now God has sent you to help me. Now, I’m able to save more children’s lives. Send my big hug and my big thanks to everyone. May God bless you always.

 

Lots of love,

Tasanee

 

 

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Tasanee with some of the kids practicing singing and playing instruments

 

Onto the next grade!

 

At the end of March, the kids at Safe Haven completed another year in school. Several grades at the local primary school had special graduation celebrations for the kids advancing to the next grade. Check out the pictures below!

 

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Learning New Skills

 

The kids at Safe Haven are currently on “holiday” from school until the end of May. Relevant’s financial support has made it possible for Tasanee to send some of the children to Mae Sot to learn how to manually screen print t-shirts. Learning these skills allows the children an opportunity to have a job to make money.

 

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Leapfrogging to reading English

 

On Relevant’s most recent trip to Safe Haven, Walter brought a Leapfrog reader for the kids to use to learn how to read English. Check out a picture of Wakim reading a book with the LeapReader!

 

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Safe Haven Sponsorship Renewal

 

As a reminder, April is Safe Haven sponsorship month at Relevant. You can sign up to begin or renew your sponsorship by filling out the attached form (below). The sign-up deadline is THIS Sunday, April 30th. Completed forms can be dropped off at the Safe Haven table in the back of the room this Sunday or submitted electronically to Cory Nelson, Relevant’s Impact Director, at cory.nelson@relevantcommunity.org.

 

Safe Haven Sponsorship Form

(Note: The link above will take you to a new page. Click the same link as above again to be redirected to the fillable and printable form.)

 

 

Prayer Requests

 

 

Pray for Tasanee. Tasanee has had episodes of low back pain and sciatica in the past and has been in a lot of pain with this again for the past month. She was recently able to get an injection for her back and received treatment from a massage therapist. Pray for healing for her back and leg pain and for wisdom, strength, and endurance as she takes care of the children and fulfills all of her leadership responsibilities as director of Safe Haven.

 

Pray for the children while they are on summer break. That they may enjoy time being together, be refreshed and ready to begin a new school year next month, continue learning new skills to enable them to work, and that God will keep them healthy in this very hot season in Thailand before rainy season begins.

 

 

Jeremiah 30:17a “‘But I will restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the LORD.”

 

March 25, 2017 by Kelly Samson

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Relevant, GREAT JOB continuing to financially and prayerfully invest in Safe Haven Orphanage! The five of us who just returned home from Safe Haven can tell you firsthand that your financial support and prayers are truly making a difference in the lives of orphan children on the other side of the world. It’s truly amazing to see God’s hands at work in the partnership He has brought about in connecting our local church smack dab in the middle of the USA with an orphanage half a world away in rural Thailand. Never underestimate what our God can do when we pray, listen, and respond with obedient, sacrificial, and generous hearts!

 

Trip Recap

 

From March 3-12, Justin Wissink, Matt Paddack, Steve Hultgren, Walter Alecio, and I traveled to Safe Haven to teach music, provide instruments, and spend time with Tasanee and the Safe Haven kids. God showed up and moved powerfully during our time to and from Thailand!

 

Because of the financial support of many from Relevant, our friends, and family, our team was able to purchase guitars, a keyboard, cajon, djembe, and conga drums, and other percussion instruments for the children to learn to play. We enjoyed sharing the gift of music and worshipping together with the kids both in Karen and English each morning and evening while at Safe Haven. It was truly a blessing to teach how to play instruments and songs and to see the kids learn new musical skills and pass along what they learned amongst one another!

 

What an amazing opportunity it was to connect with Tasanee, the other staff, and kids at Safe Haven, to continue to grow and build our partnership with one another. I’m excited about what the future holds for Relevant and Safe Haven together. We look forward to sharing pictures, videos, and more about our trip in the coming weeks…stay tuned!

 

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Team at Safe Haven (L to R: Matt Paddack, Steve Hultgren, Kelly Samson, Justin Wissink, Walter Alecio)

 

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Walter

 

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Matt

 

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Steve

 

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Justin

 

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Kelly

 

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Some of the older boys playing guitar and cajons together

 

Sunday’s turning 2!

 

Over the past couple years, many of the Safe Haven updates have included prayer requests for “baby” Sunday. This month, Sunday will be celebrating his second birthday. The youngest of the kids at Safe Haven right now, Sunday was abandoned as a premature infant. He has faced many medical scares, including complications with asthma, in his young life. Thanks to God’s hand of healing and the medical care he has been able to receive because of Relevant’s generosity, Sunday is now a thriving, healthy, happy, playful, adventurous almost-two-year-old!

 

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Planting and Outdoor Work

 

Nikhom, one of Tasanee’s multi-talented staff, teaching how to use the hand tractor Relevant purchased for Safe Haven a few years ago.

 

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Another day, Nikhom spent time with some of the older boys sweeping leaves around the orphanage to prevent fires, which are common in Thailand during this hot, dry time of year. The children at Safe Haven learn responsibility and life skills to prepare them for becoming independent adults and parents someday.

 

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Prayer Requests

 

  • Pray for Tasanee as she serves as the director of the orphanage each day. Pray for wisdom in the many decisions and often difficult circumstances and situations she encounters. Pray for strength, perseverance, and patience as balances her role as director of Safe Haven and the huge responsibility of being “mom” to the 48 kids currently under her care.
  • Many of the kids are currently on a two-week break from school. Pray for a refreshing and enjoyable time away from school and a strong finish to the school year for each of the children.
  • Upon returning from Safe Haven, Tasanee shared that one of the older boys was injured when he was involved in a motorbike accident with one of his school friends. The boy from Safe Haven suffered a shoulder injury, and his friend injured his leg and had to undergo surgery that will keep him hospitalized for several weeks. Pray for healing for both boys, and for wisdom for the doctors who will be re-examining the boy from Safe Haven’s shoulder this week.

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REMINDER!!!

 

April is Safe Haven Sponsorship month. For those who currently support Safe Haven, if you included your Safe Haven sponsorship in your 212 commitment, we want to thank you for your continued support of the Safe Haven Orphanage. If you did NOT include your Safe Haven sponsorship in your 212 commitment—or if you want to go above and beyond—or if you’ve never before been a part of Relevant’s Safe Haven sponsorship but would like to start, you can sign up for a new year of Safe Haven sponsorship starting Sunday, April 2nd.

February 14, 2017 by Kelly Samson

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Check out this month’s Safe Haven update, which includes a letter from Tasanee, updates, pictures, and prayer requests!

 

 

Letter from Tasanee

 

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We recently received the following letter from Tasanee (I cleaned up her English a bit)…

Dear Relevant Community Church,

 

Thank you very much for your kindness. I send my big love and special thanks to all of Relevant Community Church, who always supports Safe Haven Orphanage and the children around this area. Your caring supports the Safe Haven Orphanage with good food, good health, good education, and your donations are helping everything at the orphanage. You are making a great difference in the lives of Safe Haven children and the children around this area. Because of your love and kindness in supporting Safe Haven, I can help children and save children’s lives. I am so happy that I can do this, and I know you are happy with me also. I think our partnership is God’s plan, as you financially support Safe Haven and help me be able to help the children.

 

Some of the children have a health card that lasts for a year at the hospital, and the cards expired so I had to renew them. Without your support, I would not be able to renew the health cards. [The health cards help save a lot of money. For children 0-7 years old, the health cards costs $10/year, and for children 7-18 years old, health cards cost $60/year. When children get sick and have to go to the hospital, Safe Haven only has to pay $0.85 for the medical care received and/or hospital stay. Without the health card, Safe Haven could be looking at $1000+ medical bills for each child’s doctor visit or hospital stay.]

 

[Relevant financially supports Safe Haven throughout the year by sending funds donated through the Safe Haven Sponsorship every few months.] Your most recent donation arrived at Christmas time. Safe Haven children had a nice Christmas party, and the kids were very happy exchanging presents. The children say that they are very lucky to have good people like you who love them, give to them, and support their futures. They say that if they weren’t at Safe Haven, they don’t know how their lives would be going. We had fun and happiness at Christmas time. I want you to know you are like the kids’ angel sending a donation when you did, at just the right time. If we had not received your donation when we did, we would not have been able to celebrate Christmas with a party like we did. All the kids send a big “thank you” to Relevant Community Church. We hope you are all having a good 2017.

 

In 2016, all the children ended the year healthy and no children got sick except for Sunday, But he is now 19 months old and doing so much better, and the doctors say he doesn’t have asthma anymore. Because Relevant Community Church and his Safe Haven family has been praying for him, and you’ve also been praying for all the Safe Haven children, God has heard our prayers and we are all healthy at Safe Haven Orphanage.

 

Thank you for everything you do for me. You are my friends that I am honored to have in my life. You are making the kids at Safe Haven’s life beautiful. Thank you very much for remembering us in your prayers. We remember you in our prayers every morning and every night. May the God of hope fill you with good health and happiness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, may you abound in hope.

 

Wishing you all the best…that 2017 brings you good health and happiness. May God bless and guide you always.

 

Warm Regards,

Tasanee

 

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Photos from Safe Haven’s Christmas celebration

 

New Chairs for Safe Haven Chapel

 

Tasanee shared that they were able to purchase new chairs for the chapel/meeting room with some of the funds given through the Safe Haven sponsorship. The children use the chapel for their twice daily prayer and worship times.

 

 

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Burma Team’s Visit to Safe Haven

 

During their trip to Burma, Ronnie Rothe, Cory Nelson, and Tyler McCarty had the opportunity to stop by and visit Tasanee and the kids at Safe Haven. Check out the pictures below from their time at Safe Haven.

 

 

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Prayer Requests

Please pray for…

  • The children and staff at Safe Haven…for God’s continued provision for their daily needs and their continued health, safety, and well-being.
  • Safe Haven Trip in March: From March 3-12, five members of Relevant’s worship team (Justin Wissink, Kelly Samson, Matt Paddack, Steve Hultgren, and Walter Alecio) will be traveling to Safe Haven to teach music, provide instruments, and spend time with Tasanee and the Safe Haven kids.
    • Pray that through our time together, the children and staff at Safe Haven feel uplifted, supported, and filled with a renewed sense of hope and trust in our Mighty God. Pray that God will give us sensitivity to how we can best bless, encourage, and love them well.
    • Pray for wisdom, direction, and clarity as we explore future opportunities for Relevant to walk alongside and continue to partner with Safe Haven to see God’s mission advanced and His Kingdom come here on earth.
    • Pray for protection from the enemy and for safety in our travels.
    • Pray for God’s will to be done in and through us.

 

Romans 15:13 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

January 16, 2017 by Relevant

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Thank you for continuing to financially support and pray for the children and staff at Safe Haven Orphanage and Learning Center. Your prayers and sacrificial giving are blessing Safe Haven right now and are making a long-term difference in the lives of many orphan children, their leaders, and their local community. Check out this month’s update for the latest happenings, pictures, and prayer requests from Safe Haven!

 

Children’s Day Event

 

The children at Safe Haven enjoyed a special Children’s Day event with lunch, sweet treats, games, prizes, and lots of fun!

 

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Holiday Gardening

 

The children spent part of their holiday time off from school working to clean up one of their gardens!

 

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Graduation!

 

Two girls who grew up at Safe Haven graduated, after completing their school studies away from the orphanage. In order to further their education beyond 9th grade, students must continue their education in a larger city, such as Mae Sot or Chiang Mai. The girls returned to Safe Haven in December to celebrate their graduation with their Safe Haven family. What a special time for them and Tasanee (“Big Mum”)!

 

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Prayer Requests and Praise Reports

 

Please pray and praise God for…

  • The children at Safe Haven…for their health, safety, and well-being. Praise God for His provision in the lives of the two young women who completed higher education and graduated! May their example motivate the younger kids at Safe Haven to be focused and diligent in their studies, in order to provide more opportunities for their futures. Most importantly, let’s pray that each child at Safe Haven will come to know and put their faith in Jesus, be transformed by Him, and bring transformation to the world around them.
  • Tasanee and the other staff at Safe Haven…that they will feel and experience God’s love and presence deeply among them and be encouraged in their work with the children.
  • Safe Haven Trip in March: Praise God for the opportunity the team recently had to connect with a local Karen worship team to assist in preparation for sharing music with the children at Safe Haven! Pray for God’s continued guidance in the planning and preparation for the trip.
  • Burma Trip: Relevant is focused on globally and locally impacting the Karen people from Burma. For years, Relevant has been wanting to get into and send teams to Burma, but this simply hasn’t been possible. In the past few months, we’ve seen some doors open to make this possible. At the end of this month, Ronnie Rothe, Cory Nelson, and Tyler McCarty will be traveling to Burma to connect with a church plant (outside of Hpa, the capital of Karen state) about a possible partnership. Praise God for this potential opportunity to help Karen people directly through Christ-following Karen people, and pray for wisdom, direction, clarity, courage, and protection for the team traveling to Burma.

 

Joshua 1:9 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

 

 

January 10, 2017 by Relevant

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On Sunday, we celebrated Transformation Sunday. At Relevant, we pause 3 times a year to recognize some of the transforming work God has done in people’s lives, within Relevant, and through Relevant over the past trimester. It was awesome to look back over the past 4 months and celebrate the transforming work God is doing in people’s lives and within our church. Here’s a recap.

 

Raising the Heat

 

Nothing good – and no transformation – happens when we live lukewarm. BUT when we raise the temperature of our lives and our faith to boiling point, God does transforming work. Over the past trimester, the temperature was raised within our church in many ways. Below are just a few!

 

The Temperature Was Raised On Our…

 

1. Financial Generosity

Generosity is so important because generosity generates transformation in our lives, church, and the world through us. In the past trimester, we launched the 212 initiative – a two-year generosity initiative and an opportunity for every person at Relevant to “turn up the heat” of their generosity and their commitment to Relevant’s mission of transformation. About 500 people made 212 commitments and we committed to raising a total of $4.3 million, surpassing our God-sized goal of $3.8M! The coolest thing is what God did in so many lives and marriages as we went before Him to ask what He would have us do financially.

 

One of the main initiatives the money is going toward over the next 2 years is The Relevant Center. We’re so excited about The Relevant Center, as it will…

  • Provide a gathering place for our church to meet AND be a place our community can use throughout week.
  • Help us grow the ministries of Relevant AND be tool to impact our community by helping us meet the needs of our community.
  • Be a tool to help us reach more people for Jesus and make disciples of Jesus.
  • Be a catalyst to reach people far from Jesus and the church and see their lives transformed by Jesus through Relevant.

The money committed in the 212 initiative makes The Relevant Center possible. WHEN? Our December 4th offering, which we called the “First Big Give“, totaled $370,000. This will allow us to move forward with the building process and break ground on The Relevant Center later this year, with plans to occupy The Relevant Center by Christmas 2018. PRAISE GOD!

 

2. Commitment to “Invest and Invite”

As followers of Christ, Jesus has called us to reach people people far from Him by INVESTING in them, through sharing the love in Jesus in how we speak and act toward them. At Relevant, we’re always challenging people to INVITE those they’re investing in, into Relevant to hear the gospel. There is nothing more important than investing and inviting, because it’s ultimately about inviting people into a relationship with Jesus! The temperature was raised in this area last trimester. Because of Relevant’s “Investing and Inviting”, we saw more than 20 people put their faith in Jesus in the past 4 months!

 

Christmastime is a special time that people, many of whom are not already part of a church or interested in God, spiritual things, or being part of a church, are more open to God and the church. Leading up to Christmas Eve, we encouraged everyone at Relevant to be intentionally about inviting and bringing people in their lives with them to our Christmas Eve gatherings. Because of Relevant’s commitment to investing in and inviting others, over 1100 people had the opportunity to hear the Gospel message at our Christmas Eve gatherings. PRAISE GOD!

 

3. Global Impact with the Karen people

Our global impact initiatives are focused on Karen people from Burma. We do everything to impact the Karen community with Jesus’ love in word and deed– bringing long-term transformation to their communities both here locally, with over 6000 Karen refugees in Omaha, and globally in Thailand and Burma.

 

Our main initiative globally with the Karen people up to this point has been through Safe Haven Orphanage on the Thai side of the Thai/Burma border. Last trimester, we began organizing the next trip to Safe Haven, which will be taking place this March. On the last trip to Safe Haven, Tasanee oversees the orphanage shared her desire for musical training and instruments for the children to help them grow in leading their own daily worship times. We have the awesome opportunity of being able to send 5 members of our worship team to Safe Haven to share the Gospel and love of Jesus through providing musical training and interacting with the children and staff.

 

For years, we’ve been wanting to get into Burma, into Karen State. Up until recently, this hasn’t been possible. However, in the past several months, we’ve seen God open some doors to make this possible, including our contacts in Thailand and Burma, connecting us with a church plant in Burma. This church plant, located just outside of capital city of Karen State, Hpa-An, is a people committed to meeting the needs of and sharing the Gospel with their Karen brothers and sisters. At the end of this month, a team of three will be making Relevant’s first trip into Burma to connect with this church plant in Burma about a possible partnership. We’re excited to see where God leads and for an opportunity to help the Karen people directly, through Christ-following Karen people. PRAISE GOD!

 

 

Baptisms

 

One of the things we always celebrate on Transformation Sunday is transformation through baptism. On Sunday, we had the opportunity to celebrate 15 people who have put their faith in Jesus by asking Him to be the Forgiver of their sins and Leader of their lives. The following people publicly proclaimed their faith in Jesus through baptism…

  • Natalie Aksyonov
  • Millie Bautch
  • Riley Beltran
  • Jimmy George
  • Solomon George
  • Will Grisham
  • Amy Houck
  • Scott Houck
  • Shayli Houck
  • Cassi Krepela
  • Cruz McCarty
  • Rigley Renbarger
  • Zoe Sullivan
  • Andrew VanHoozer
  • Jake Wolfe

 

Transformation Stories

 

We always want to hear from as many about transformation and what God has been doing in people’s lives and our church in order to praise God together. In December, we set up a video Story Booth, along with inviting people to send in their stories to answer the question of, “What have you seen God doing in your life or our church recently?” Here are some of the responses we received (~4.5 min):

 

 

 

It is humbling to see the transforming work that God is doing in our church! To Him be the Glory!

 

November 19, 2016 by Relevant

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Relevant..thank you for your financial support and prayers for the Safe Haven Orphanage and Learning Center in Thailand. Your sacrificial giving and prayers are making a HUGE difference in the lives of many orphan children! Check out this month’s update for a letter from Tasanee, as well as the latest happenings, pictures, and prayer requests from Safe Haven.

 

 

Serving Their Community

 

Tasanee and some of the children served water and orange juice to the villagers in their community were celebrating the Kathina Ceremony, a Buddhist celebration. Buddhism is the predominant religion in Thailand. A kind expression of generosity, love, and support for their local community.

 

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Some of the older kids also had an opportunity to enjoy some soccer as part of the ceremony festival.

 

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Planting

 

Always hard at work…here are a couple of kids at the Learning Center planting long beans and peanuts.

 

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Dictionaries

 

The children at Safe Haven recently received their own dictionaries…and look how excited they are!

 

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Artwork

 

Recently, the kids at Safe Haven had an opportunity to put their creative abilities to work. Check out some of their artwork below!

 

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Letter from Tasanee

 

Dear Relevant Community Church,

 

   I would love to thank you very much for your extremely generous donations to Safe Haven Orphanage.  Supporting us during this difficult time is just another of many kindnesses you’ve shown us throughout the years.

 

 

   On October 25, there was a lot of rain in the Tha Song Yang area. Many villages were flooded and some houses went to the river. Some who know of Safe Haven Orphanage called me and asked for help. The next day, on October 26, 2016, in the Tha Song Yang area, there was fighting on the Burma side.  Some of the families (from the Burma side) crossed the river looking for safety.

 

  Because of rainy season, people here have had a problem when they need to go to the hospital, because the road was broken and so they couldn’t travel by car and had to travel by boat instead. One boat carrying 9 people was sinking, and 5 people passed away on the boat. One of them was a lady on her way to the hospital to give birth. The next day, her husband killed himself. That couple had 3 children who survived. Another lady and her daughter also passed away on the boat. The boat driver also killed himself, because he felt responsible that many people died on the boat. So they asked me to go and give counseling to those who survived on the boat, which I did.

 

   The government gave rice to the villages affected by flooding and other organizations have provided necessities for the families. We at Safe Haven have provided rice, blankets, and mosquito nets to help those affected by the flooding, as well as those who had to leave their villages (due to the fighting in Burma) to try to find a safe place to live. Safe Haven Orphanage is a small organization, but we’re doing what we can for children and families in need of help. Right now we are also trying to repair the house for the kids who lost both of their parents (in the boat) to stay with their grandfather.

 

 

   I would love to send my big thanks to Relevant Community Church. Because of your donations, Safe Haven Orphanage kids can grow up, go to school, have good health and hope for their future. And we can help other people who really need help. Relevant Community Church is my angel…when the children here need help, you provide for us so I can help them, along with allowing us to help others who really need it.

 

   Luke 6:38 “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Safe Haven gets much from you, and we will give to children who need help too.

 

 

   You are a good friend to me. I do the one thing I can…remembering you all in our prayers every day. May God bless you and guide you.

 

Kind Regards,

Tasanee

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These are the 3 children who lost their parents in the boat

 

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Some of the blankets and supplies Tasanee provided to the displaced villagers

 

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Tasanee on the boat, where she provided counsel to some of the individuals who survived boating problems

 

Prayer Requests

 

Please pray for…

  • Tasanee…what a year she has had, with the death of one of the children earlier in the year and many of her own health problems, with blood pressure issues, back pain, and other illnesses. She has been having bad back and leg pain.Pray for God’s sustaining power, peace, encouragement, comfort, and for physical healing for her to enable her to care for the children and staff He has put in her care.
  • The children and staff at Safe Haven…for their health, safety, and well-being. That the children will be focused and diligent in their studies and get a good education that will provide them with opportunities for their futures. That each child and adult at Safe Haven will come to know and put their faith in Jesus, be transformed by Him, and bring transformation to the world around them.
  • The families displaced from their homes in Thailand due to flooding, as well as the families who had to leave their villages in Burma to flee for safety from the fighting. For physical and spiritual provision.
  • The three children who lost both their parents in the sinking boat. That their grandfather’s home will be repaired to allow them a safe place to live, and that these children will come to know the love of their heavenly Father.
  • Tasanee recently has had 2 babies brought to her. One came to her with his mother, after the baby’s father passed away. Then two weeks ago, a second baby was born. This baby’s mother passed away during birth. As a result of the mom dying, the father doesn’t want to look after the baby, so the baby’s aunt has taken him in. Tasanee provided formula for both babies to the baby’s mom and the other baby’s aunt. Pray for the health of these babies and for the mom and aunt caring for them.
  • For one of the little children, New, who had to have an operation this week and is staying in the hospital.
  • God’s direction, wisdom, and guidance for the planning of Relevant’s March 2017 trip to Safe Haven.
  • God’s blessing upon the local village of Tha Song Yang (where Safe Haven is located) and for God to continue use Safe Haven to powerfully impact and influence their local community.

Jeremiah 29:7 “Seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you…Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”

October 27, 2016 by Relevant

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Check out this month’s update for the latest happenings at Safe Haven!

 

Kids Back Home

 

Safe Haven recently celebrated the birthday of one of Tasanee’s daughters. As you can see, the kids are back together again at Safe Haven after the younger children were taken to nearby Mae Sot last month during the peak of fighting in Burma.

 

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Update on Sunday

 

When baby Sunday was born prematurely, the doctors gave him a 50/50 chance of survival. Now, 18 months later, with lots of love and care from “Big Mum” (the kids’ name for Tasanee) and all his brothers and sisters, Sunday is a super healthy, active and happy little boy. Praise God!

 

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Goin’ Bananas

 

In conjunction with a company in Bangkok, Tasanee and the kids started a new income generating project at Safe Haven…growing bananas!

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Tasanee and some of the older girls preparing the banana plants for planting

 

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Tasanee checking up on this year’s banana plants

 

Working Hard

 

The kids at the Learning Center have been busy working the land…check out some pictures below!

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Prayer Requests

 

Please pray for…

  • The health, safety, and well-being of the children and staff at Safe Haven Orphanage and Learning Center.
  • Success with the banana ‘crops’ for Safe Haven’s new partnership with a Bangkok company to generate additional income for the Orphanage.
  • Peace in Burma and God’s protection and provision for the Karen people affected by military conflicts in Karen state.
  • God’s direction, wisdom, and guidance for the planning underway for Relevant’s March 2017 trip to Safe Haven.

2 Corinthians 9:13 “Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else.”

October 18, 2016 by Relevant

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Last Saturday, October 15th, volunteers from Relevant headed out to north Omaha for our Global Impact GO! Project. Here is a recap from our Impact Coach, Cory Nelson.

 

Our goal was to provide an opportunity to engage the body of Relevant to serve the local Karen refugee community at Pine Park apartments. While a lot of what we did was to meet physical needs we also wanted to engage the Karen relationally.

 

Over fifty adults and kids from Relevant showed up to serve. We had different teams serving throughout the property. These teams built a bench and mulched the playground area, cleaned up the grounds to provide more garden space, cleaned apartment hallways, offered free clothes and shoes through a clothing drive and played games and did crafts with the children.

 

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The event was a huge success and had a lot of impact. We saw people from Relevant serving together and connecting relationally with each other. We provided a safe place for Karen parents to sit and watch their kids play on the playground that we built last year. Relevant’s Youth United students lead the garden cleanup. They were able to clear more space for gardens next year and filled a dump truck full of weeds. The Karen were very excited to have more garden space for next year.

 

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Teams of 4-5 people cleaned up inside the apartment buildings alongside the Karen. While there was a language barrier, it was still fun for them to work together. All the clothing that had been collected during Relevant’s “Second Sunday” clothing drives this year was given out to the Karen for free. This helped provide clothes and shoes for families that can’t afford to buy new clothes. One of the biggest impacts we made was with the kids. I saw kids from Relevant playing with Karen kids, making Captain America shields and animal masks, playing tag, throwing frisbees and having fun just being kids.

 

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After all the projects were completed we served lunch for all the volunteers from Relevant and the Karen who lived at the apartment complex. The food was from Salween Thai, which is owned by a local Karen man, and was a big hit with everyone. It was really cool to see everyone sitting together eating lunch after a fun day of serving.

 

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Thank you to all who participated! If you’re interested in helping serve Karen refugees in the future, we have a Restoring Dignity project coming up on Sat. Nov. 5th. We’ll help restore the home of a Karen refugee family. Learn more and sign up here.

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