Askins in Asia: June 2017 Newsletter

Our Nearest Neighbors

June has come and gone. May was filled with travels; I spent June working from Hong Kong and being there for my family. So, the focus of this month’s newsletter is the mission field in my own home. My article discusses how tempting it can be to neglect this mission field, why it’s necessary, and how we are evangelizing our nearest neighbors. Eliza’s article, “June For Father” talks about the joys and struggles of being mom in the pew while dad preaches. 

As always, please distribute and share this newsletter however you can. If you have any questions or would like me to cover a particular topic in the newsletter, send me an email. I’d love to answer your questions. 

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We are also looking for opportunities to connect with congregations through video chats. We have done a number of presentations by video chat with supporting congregations. Typically, we arrange the presentation during the Sunday School hour, however, we can certainly present at other times as well. If your congregation is interested, please let me know. 

We finished this fiscal year without significantly increasing the deficit on our account. We still have a significant debt from the previous year, however, and we hope to erase that debt this year. If you’d like to know how you can help us. Or just click the "Support the Askins" button below. :-) 

Thank you for your prayers and support. 

In Christ,
— Pr. Askins



Askins in Asia: May Newsletter

Confessing Christ in Foreign Lands


Over the last month, I traveled to several countries in Asia to support the teaching of the Book of Concord. Everywhere we went, pastors and lay people gobbled up the teaching of the Lutheran faith and asked for more. I enjoyed the privilege and opportunity to support these souls hungering for pure spiritual food. 

Also during May, a number of friends came and spent time with our family. Eliza discusses how encouraging and helpful their support has been for our family. 

Thank you for supporting us. As we near the end of the fiscal year, we still need additional support to make our end-of-the-year fiscal goals. Please prayerfully consider joining our Mission Sender network using the prayer card attached to this newsletter. 


Please also prayerfully consider speaking to your congregation about supporting us as a Together in Mission (TIM) congregation. I often do presentations via video chats with congregations across the United States. Please do not hesitate to send me a note if your congregation might be interested in hearing and seeing about our work from the mission field. 

Thank you again, and God’s peace be with you. 

In Christ, 
—the Askins

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Askins in Asia: April Newsletter

Thank You for Walking With Us

Thank you for walking with us on this journey. Because of your support, I have seen and supported Christ’s work throughout Asia. 

In this newsletter, I provide an honest update about our support network, the joys and the challenges. We have a strong network, and yet, we still have work to do. Even though we have not significantly overspent the donations we have received, we still do not have enough support to completely fulfill the budget needs, and we’re carrying a deficit from the previous year on our account. See the newsletter for more details. For opportunities to offer support, see the “Give Now” section below. 

During our time here, Eliza started a bookclub for home school children. She talks about it in her article this month. As usual, there are pictures and the prayer card at the end. Please keep Eliza and the children in your prayers as I will be traveling from May 8–28 to five different countries in the region. 

Pastors and church secretaries, please print the newsletter and share it with the congregation. If you have any questions or would like more information, please reply to this email. 

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As always, thank you for your support. 

In Christ, 
Rev. Roy S. Askins


An Opportunity


We'd like to start sending paper mailings to congregations. At this point, we have a volunteer who is willing to stuff and mail the newsletters. At this point, we're looking for someone who could print color copies and pass them along to be stuffed and mailed. If you would be willing, please reply to this email and let me know. Thank you!


Walk with Us

Please consider partnering with the LCMS to support our work. As we draw near to the end of the fiscal year, now is a particularly important time for us as we are a bit behind on support, and we have a deficit from last year. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to send me a note. 

Thank you for your support. 

Supporting our Partners

At the conference in the Philippines

At the conference in the Philippines

Supporting our Partners

God's blessings be with you this Lent. 

Last month, I traveled to the Philippines to assist with a regional consultation. The Lutheran Church in the Philippines and other churches throughout Southeast Asia gathered together to discuss the best ways to proclaim the Gospel. It became clear to me how much our role as missionaries is not so much direct proclamation of the Gospel, but providing tools and means for our partner churches to reach out into their own communities most effectively. 

Over the last few months, we have also started learning Mandarin. In her article, Eliza discusses how even though learning a language can make us feel like fools, God does not see us a fools but redeemed and forgiven children. 

AND, in case you missed is, there's a link below for a video I did with the kiddos earlier this month. Enjoy. 

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As always, thank you for your support. 

In Christ, 
— The Askins


Walk with us in this adventure. Use the button below to go straight to the LCMS website and support our work. Thank you. 



Lumps of Life

— by Eliza

Sometimes there are bumps in the road and lumps in your life.

Raising children brings around plenty of mysterious bumps, bangs, and bruises. Some of those require ice others a bandaid while many go unnoticed and untreated because life just keeps going.

Many times the care of the bump is conditional of the audience and surroundings. Do we want to stop playing, do we want to wait at the doctor's office, do we want to give up our time doing something else to check the bumps and lumps? 

Not usually.

But sometimes we need to stop. We need to cry a little to clear out the eyes and release the adrenaline. We need a kiss to end the sting. We need a bandaid for out of sight out of mind.

And every once and awhile we need the doctor for a cream, stitches, or more thorough investigation.

Thanks to the great physician for providing care for the bumps and lumps of life. He knows there will be plenty whether they are physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual. But in Him there is rest and peace.

Askins in Asia: February Newsletter

Lion Rock

Lion Rock

February, The Short Month

As Eliza noted in her article, February is the short month. And it got past me. The newsletter is a few days late, but it's finally here. It has taken so long because I've been working on a project to help NSM missionaries raise awareness of their work. Thus, my article is about the NSM model and what it means. Keep your eyes peeled for more soon. 

Pastors and secretaries, as always, please print the newsletter and post it in the narthex. If you have any shut-ins, please also consider taking a copy to them. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to send me a note. 

Thank you for all your prayers and support. 

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Sincerely,
—The Askins


Use the button below to send financial support directly through the LCMS.org website. Otherwise, the newsletter provides more information as well. 

Blood is Thicker than Water

— by Eliza

You’ve heard it said before that blood is thicker than water.

This saying reminds us of the bond we have with our blood family. We don’t choose family; those individuals are chosen for us. They are a gift from the Lord that cannot be given back. We learn from our grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles, siblings, and cousins. We are also protected and supported by them.

We said good bye to those teachers and guides when moving to the mission field. Despite the water separating us, the blood still binds us, and we communicate in various ways.

But we have been further blessed in the field by water that binds us with another family.

The family of Christ supports and teaches us here in its own way as well as filling the voids. It is through the baptismal waters and even the gracious blood of Christ that we have the gift of an even larger family. Our children have grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins here in this place.

No they are not blood relatives, but they are blood-and-water relatives.

We are fortunate that other missionaries come through Hong Kong regularly. Those people have opened their arms to our children. They’ve sat at our supper table listening to chatter about the latest read or newest lego creation. Those people have read a picture book or listened to a blooming reader on the comfort of our couch. They’ve kept watch as we all maneuver public transit or settle in the chairs of the sanctuary. They’ve sung the hymns of our church boldly with little voices.

And for all these things my children beam with joy when any of them visits because it is family gathering together united in the blood and water of the Lamb.

Because yes, Christ’s blood is thicker than water.

When Dad Travels

— by Eliza

Dad travels monthly. Sometimes it is a long weekend and other times it is as much as 2 weeks.

It is not easy to say good bye. It is not easy to wait for his return. But, we are learning with each trip the lessons God would have us learn in this our vocation as missionary family.

We are not alone.

We are blessed to live in a building with other missionaries. We are blessed to have additional missionaries in the city. We have also made friends in the area. There is help with childcare, meals, and more.

Plus, we are learning to have a different routine when Dad is gone. We are also learning to be a support system for each other. Big sister and big brother help little sister and little brother. 

Mother learns flexibility and then teaches that as well as school to her children.

And when Dad returns we have so much to tell about the places, people, and projects we’ve studied and visited.

It’s not easy, but it is also teaching each of us that our Lord Jesus is holding us in His arms. He is traveling with Dad and He is staying home with us.

We are His. He has called us to this life and He is giving us our daily bread.


Askins in Asia: January Newsletter

Epiphany Edition

In this newsletter, Pr. Askins speaks briefly on Christ's Transfiguration. Then he covers the events of the last year. The long and short of it: Christ has enabled him to serve in this way through you who have chosen to support the LCMS in this work. So, thank you. 

Eliza shares some reflections on the Chinese new year and what the new year has in store for us as a family. 

Pastors and secretaries, please print off copies of the newsletter to put into the narthex and share with your members. We greatly appreciate it. 

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Prayer Card: Click here

Thank you again for your support. Please let us know if you have any questions. 

Blessed Epiphany, 

— The Askins



Askins in Asia: December Newsletter

The Church's Mission

In this newsletter, Pr. Askins discusses the mission of the church, to preserve the Means of Grace pure and unadulterated. The Holy Spirit works through these means; He preserves the church with them and calls the elect into the church with them. 

Eliza talks about how our plans are not God's plans, but that God does have a plan for us. It might include having a child in Hong Kong, but He has a plan and provides for us. Finally, Pr. Askins provides a quick update on what has been happening around the Askins' household for the last few months. 

Pastors and Secretaries, please print off copies of the newsletter for your shut-ins or anyone who would like a copy. We would greatly appreciate it if you could post the newsletters in your narthex as well. 

For all of our other supporters, please keep us in your prayers. Consider sharing our newsletter with fellow church members. We also included our updated prayer card. Please share it and consider asking others to join you in supporting Christ's work through us. 

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Prayer Card: Click here

Thank you again for your support. Please let us know if you have any questions. 

Blessed Christmas, 

— The Askins



Askins in Asia: October Newsletter

The conjunction of Halloween and All Saint's Day gives the church an opportunity to confess the central teaching of the Reformation: that we are justified freely by God's grace on account of Christ's sake through faith. In other words, we have been transformed from goblins and ghouls into forgiven, holy, pure saints in the eyes of God. Read Pr. Askins's article for more. 

As we learn to live in Hong Kong, we've had to learn how to adjust to crowds and how they act differently here than in the United States. Eliza shares some of her experiences in her article about crowds. 

Finally, check out our prayers and special announcements. 

To download the newsletter:

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Pastors and church secretaries, please print copies to put in your narthex. If at all possible, please include them in your monthly newsletters. 

Also, if anyone has any questions, feel free to send me an email or use the form below. We really enjoy hearing from all y'all. 

Thank you for walking with us. 

—the Askins


Walk with us in the journey of proclaiming Christ in Asia. You can join us as a Together in Mission Congregation or as individual or family Mission Sender. For more information, reply to this email. Or click "Give Now" link above.



Have any questions? Anything you'd like to hear about? Send us a note. 

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Name

Askins in Asia: September Newsletter

The Duties of an Evangelical Synod 

The opportunities that Lutheran parochial schools provide for the education of Christ's little ones cannot be overestimated. I had a wonderful opportunity to see some of this work firsthand.

Please read the newsletter below for more details.

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Pastors and secretaries, please print off a copy for your narthex and to distribute to the people of God you serve. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. We love hearing from you. 

The fourth and final page this month is our prayer card. If you would like to partner with the LCMS to support our work, you can use the prayer card to do so. Your support is greatly appreciated.  

In Christ,

—the Askins


We are still working to fill up our supporter base. If you can walk with us through one-time or recurring gifts, please use the "Give Now" button below.

Thank you to everyone who has already supported us and those who continue to support Christ's work in Asia through us.


Askins in Asia: August Newsletter

Baptized into Your Name, Most Holy

Over the last month, I saw the work of Christ first hand. It was a difficult and yet remarkable story. Right now, I can't identify the country I visited or the people I met, but I can tell you that Christ worked through His chosen means of Word and Sacrament to call, gather, enlighten, and sanctify His people. 

Please read the newsletter below for more details.

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Pastors and secretaries, please print off a copy for your narthex and to distribute to the people of God you serve. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. We love hearing from you. 

The fourth and final page this month is our prayer card. If you would like to partner with the LCMS to support our work, you can use the prayer card to do so. Your support is greatly appreciated.  

In Christ,

—the Askins


If you'd like to partner with the LCMS to support our work in Asia, please use the button below. Thank you for your support.

Askins in Asia: July Newsletter

Beautiful Lake Toba in Indonesia.

Beautiful Lake Toba in Indonesia.

Lutheranism in Indonesia


The last month brought many blessings. One of these blessings was the opportunity to see the work of the Indonesian Christian Lutheran Church (GKLI). Despite living in a predominantly Muslim country where the temptation is often to be simply a generic Christian, the GKLI proudly clings to Scriptures and the Lutheran Confessions. 

Please read the newsletter below for more details.

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Pastors and secretaries, please print off a copy for your narthex and to distribute to the people of God you serve. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. We love hearing from you. 

Someone also suggested adding a fourth page to the newsletter to overcome the fourth blank page when printing the newsletter. I planned to do that this time but realized that I must change the template to accomplish it. So, being short I time, I postponed that change until next time. 

Thank you for your prayers and support. 

—the Askins



Live Video Newsletter

Mark Your Calendars!

On July 28th, at 8:00 PM CST, the Askins in Asia will host their first ever, Live Video newsletter. We will spend the first half hour talking about life in Hong Kong. The second half of the hour will be open for questions from the group. 

We are limited to 50 guests at this point. So, if you'd like to attend, please register using the button below. At the same time, please only register if you're certain you can attend. 

Please contact us with any questions (roy.askins@lcmsintl.org). We look forward to seeing you soon. 

—the Askins


Penpals Podcast 03: Ezekiel's Bearded Dog

So, Ezekiel has asked for a bearded dog more times than I can count. I don't know for certain if we'll get one, but here's the third episode of the Penpals podcast where he talks about it. 

In today's episode, we thank Lord of Life Lutheran Church, Plano, TX for partnering with us to share the work of Christ and Him crucified for the sins of the world. To learn more about Lord of Life, visit their website: http://planolutheran.com/

If you or your congregation might be interested in supporting Christ's work in Asia, please visit our Partner With Us page for more information. 

We are always taking questions. If your children would like to participate, please fill out the form below. If you give us your child's first name and the state in which you live, we'll announce it on the air. 

Thank you for making time to listen. 


Name *
Name
Your child's first name.
The state in which you live.

Penpals Podcast 02: Ronan on Missionary Chapel

Today Ronan discusses missionary chapel. You can tell he's been studying his catechism as well. 

Please listen or download. Feel free to share this with anyone who might be interested. If your children would like to participate and ask questions, please fill out the form below. We will answer them as soon as we can. 

A huge thank you to this week's Together in Mission Congregation, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Fairview/Allen, Texas. For more information, visit their website: http://www.immanuelfairview-allen.org/

If you or your congregation would like to become a partner and support Christ's work in Asia, please visit our Partner With Us page. 

 


Name *
Name
Please only put your child's first name, so that we can give due credit on the podcast. If you prefer not to leave your child's name, simply write "Anonymous."
Please give us the name of the state in which you live. So, we'll say, "This question is from Joe in Texas."

Penpal Podcast 01: Mathias and the Yellow House Mystery

In the inaugural issue of the Askins in Asia Penpal Podcast, Mathias talks about the book he just finished reading, The Yellow House Mystery

SPOILER ALERT. I think Mathias gives away part of the book. :-)

Please stay tuned for more Penpal podcasts. Initially, we plan to release a couple episodes a week, but will eventually settle into a weekly podcast from the children. 

If your children would like to participate, please fill out the form below, and we will get to them as soon as we can. 

Thank you to Faith Lutheran Church, Plano, TX for walking with us in sharing Christ in Asia. You can find out more about Faith, hear sermons, and learn about their classical school on their website: http://faithplano.org/. Thank you for supporting us. 

If you or your congregation would like to sponsor our work, please visit the Partner With Us tab for more information. 


Name *
Name
Please include your child's first name so we can give due credit. Otherwise, write "Anonymous" in the box.
Please tell us what state you live in so we can announce something to the effect of, "This question is from Joe in Texas."

Askins in Asia June

A June to Remember

Greetings in the Lord Jesus Christ. The June issue of Askins in Asia is hot off the . . . um . . . presses, I guess. Well, get it while you can—whenever you want, from these links here: 

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Pastors and secretaries, please print off a copy for your narthex and to distribute to the people of God you serve. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. We love hearing from you. 

Thank you for your prayers and support. 

—the Askins