This update is a series of short updates on what God is doing through us. You’ll find a short report, and prayer requests, under each section.
As March draws closer, we are now solidly into the ‘core’ of the semester. “The grind” of the academic calendar is starting to take its toll on many, bringing problems to the surface. God has given me a number of opportunities to counsel students going through relational challenges. These included thorny dating issues, and some tension on one of our campus leadership teams. By God’s grace, all of these situations are heading in the right direction!
Campus leadership team transitions are also taking place. This has already occurred at PCOM, and will happen at Drexel in early April. Please pray that God provides momentum at PCOM after a slower start, and that God gives us wisdom in selecting excellent leaders at Drexel.
In a previous email, we mentioned our hope that a physician friend of ours would be coming to the area so that we could continue expanding our ministry. In God’s wisdom, our friend will complete the next stage of his training in New York, rather than Philadelphia. We view this as God’s wisdom, though, and already we’ve seen signs from believing physicians at Penn (where we had hoped to expand) that they are increasingly ready to step up and do more with the students. Please pray for this effort, and one of our council members, Dr. Jim Kirkpatrick, as he provides leadership.
Pray also for an interfaith forum taking place at Drexel on March 25th. Our speaker for the evening will be Dr. Paul Tripp, so please pray that God helps him present the gospel in a compelling and relevant way. Pray also that the believing students follow-up with their peers, and that believing students from other campuses come out. My hope is that each of our five medical campuses will get excited and do something similar in the 2010-11 academic year.
The Lord blessed us with a phenomenal December, and we met our budget for the year! THANKS SO VERY MUCH to all of you who contributed, and especially to those who were able to give something extra. God has also blessed us with $650 in new monthly support since January 1st.
Please keep praying for new monthly partners, and contacts, as we continue progressing toward full-funding.
This summer, our family is praying about several missions opportunities, both involving students from Philadelphia. The two primary opportunities are the Summer Medical Institutes (SMI) in Texas (7/3-31) and Philadelphia (6/12-26). While we have been to the project in Texas before, the Philadelphia site is beginning again as a pilot project that we hope to expand in future years. (I have enjoyed serving on its planning team). At this time, we believe that SMI Texas would be the best option for our family since we would be able to live onsite with the students for an entire month, whereas the Philadelphia project is shorter, and its housing cannot accommodate us. However, the financial cost (approx. $7,000) for SMI Texas is significant, and it would take time away from our summer support-raising efforts, so please keep this matter closely in prayer. We know that, however God leads, we will be blessed.
On that note, we consider ourselves blessed to have each one of you on our support team, regardless of the role God has led you to play. Please know that we are deeply thankful for you!
Bryan & Sharon Stoudt