Dear Brethren,

Report of Mission Trip to Kathmandu BP Church, Nepal

6 October 2014 (Mon): Day 1

I left for Nepal on Monday 6 October 2014 to Kathmandu city by SilkAir. The flight was a direct flight of 4½ hours. It was a trip by faith in God as I know the heavy responsibility and many duties I had in teaching the Word of God. If God will not go with me and help me, I simply cannot do anything at all. I went with Rev Sychen in this trip. Rev Sychen is a Nepalese who graduated from FEBC. He served as the pastor for the Nepalese Church in Singapore and Malaysia. In Kathmandu BP Church, preacher Rajan is in-charge who is also a graduate of FEBC. Although each of us can bring 30kg for check-in luggage, we found that we were over-weight as we brought many things to give to the Church members including craft material to be used for the VBS. Thank God for His help that we managed to repack and increase our handcarry weight to bring everything to Nepal. Praise God to arrive safely at Kathmandu city airport. The visa and immigration clearance went smoothly despite many luggages and a big box that we brought along.

From the airport we went directly to the Church in which preacher Rajan and his family live in. It is a rented premises for his family of 4 with a room and a kitchen. The Church uses a hall of about 25 square meters which can sit at most 30 adults. In Nepal, members sit on the carpeted floor in the Church hall. After unloading many stuff in the Church premises and discussion with preacher Rajan for the next 3 days’ programme, Rev Sychen and I left to stay in a guesthouse of about 15min taxi drive away in the tourist district. Thank God we managed to find a guesthouse that costs us US$20 a night which is relatively clean and safe. I prepared my lessons in the night and the Lord gave me a good night rest.

7 October 2014 (Tue): Day 2

This is the first day of the Vacation Bible School (VBS) for the children. Thank God for about 42 children who came. Most of them are unbelievers who live nearby the Church. A few came in the VBS last year but majority is first timer. Preacher Rajan was my interpreter. I taught the children English Bible songs. Each day they learned 3 to 4 new songs. Without a guitarist, it is harder to sing to the right tune and note. The Lord helped me as singing is not my gift. After the song session, it was message time. I taught on the life of David with one message per day in this 3-day VBS. By God’s grace, this is how we run each mission trip for the year to use the same message theme. It helps as I have taught the life of David in earlier mission trips to Myanmar, Vietnam and Nias.

For the 3 messages on David, I taught on David the Shepherd Boy, David the Soldier and David the King. I emphasised a lot on salvation. In the first message, the children can see a believer in David and an unbeliever in Saul. After the message, we asked for those who want to believe in Jesus as their Saviour. Many raised their hands and we prayed the sinner’s prayer together. The Lord knows the heart of these children and I pray they are genuine in their heart to the Lord. After the message, we had our first memory verse. It was a challenge to the children as they are not familiar in learning the Bible verses. Nevertheless, many tried to memorise. We had craft session then and each craft is a reinforcement of the message. Thank God for the Singaporean brethren who helped me to prepare all the craft materials for the 3 days of the VBS. The children really enjoyed the craft session. We had games and then ended with songs. The VBS started at 9am and ended at 12noon. Lunch was served for the children and then they left for home.

I learned to acquire the taste of Nepalese food which is my lunch and dinner for the next 3 days. It is quite nice and tasty actually. With a short break, we began the Adults Bible seminar at 1.30pm. About 30 adults came. This was meant for the Church members to deepen their knowledge of God’s Word. There are 6 sessions with 2 preaching sessions per day. Each preaching is about 1 hour 15min. Preacher Rajan interpreted for me for 5 sessions and the 6th session was interpreted by Rev Sychen who also led in the Q&A session for the first 2 days after the messages. The Lord granted me the grace and strength to preach His Word to teach the 13 chapters in the Book of Nehemiah for the 3 days. Applications were made to their Christian lives to challenge them to pray and trust in God. Kathmandu BP Church must also rise up like the days of Nehemiah to build their walls to be strong in the Lord.

The Adults Bible seminar ended around 5.15pm and we had dinner fellowship. Rev Sychen and I left for our guesthouse. Thank God for a fruitful day though it was very exhausting for me. Back in the guesthouse, I have to prepare for the following day’s lessons. Again it was a good night rest and in fact every night I slept very well till the morning.

8 October 2014 (Wed): Day 3

I was a little disappointed that fewer children about 32 came for the VBS. I was told some children were forbidden to come due to parental objection who must have realized this is a Christian programme. Thank God for another spiritually fulfilling day for the VBS with the children happily learning God’s Word and singing the Gospel songs. I also did a worksheet of English word search from the 2 messages that they learned. Surprisingly the children tried very hard though they hardly can speak English. Thank God many prayed for their salvation in day 2 of the VBS. My heart is always encouraged to see souls saved calling upon Jesus as their Saviour.

In the afternoon, we had the Adults Bible seminar. I can see that they have better understanding of God’s Word and appreciate the Book of Nehemiah better. In fact, some shared that before the Bible seminar, they did not understand this Book of Nehemiah and thought that there is no application for them at all. Thank the Lord for speaking to their hearts. After the Adults Bible seminar and dinner, Rev Sychen and I went to visit a Church member. His wife has not been regular in Church worship and we wanted to encourage her. I cannot speak Nepalese but I believe my presence and smile can bring some encouragement to the family.

9 October 2014 (Thur): Day 4

This was the last day of the VBS. We prayed for more children to come. The Lord answered our prayers to bring more than 50 children. The entire Church hall was packed. I challenged the children to seek forgiveness in Christ alone just like David when he sinned and repented. Thank God for many who indicated their decision to believe in Jesus Christ. We had a quiz towards the end of the VBS between the boys and girls. The children enjoyed the quiz through the different marks depending on the gift box they picked. The Lord is good that there was power supply at that time. In Nepal, electricity is cut off for a few hours each day and the timing can change. Throughout the 3 day VBS when I need the electricity in using the projector for the songs and other activities, the Lord always ensures there is electricity supply. We ended the VBS with a group photo together and the gifts given to the children. The best 3 most behaved students in the VBS also received their prizes.

The Adults Bible seminar ended with a challenge to watch and pray with the warning in the last chapter of Nehemiah in which the people broke their 4 promises to God after Nehemiah left them for a few years. The Adults also had a group photo together with t-shirts given to them. Nepal is a very poor country with poor road conditions and dusty places. The Lord has mercy on these people to save them.

10 October 2014 (Fri): Day 5

As there is a need to look for a bigger premises for the Church, we spent this day to recce for places for the Church. Preacher Rajan and a Church leader each has a motorcycle. Rev Sychen and I took the 2 motorcycles as pillion drivers. We spend a few hours traveling to different places as well as see existing Church premises to understand how Churches are built in Nepal. Thank God for safety on the road as it is very bumpy and dangerous as the same narrow road is filled with cars, motorcycles, bicycles, people as well as animals at the same time. We met with a Church member to have lunch and had dinner in the home of another Church member. Thank God for good fellowship with them.

11 October 2014 (Sat): Day 6

The weekend in Nepal is a Saturday. Hence the main worship service was held on Saturday at 11am. I preached from John 14:1-3 to exhort the members to know our hope is in our Home in Heaven and not on earth. In this worship service, preacher Rajan’s daughter Janice was baptized by Rev Sychen. The Lord’s Supper was also served. This is rare for the Church as they do not have any ordained minister who can conduct the Lord’s Supper for them. Thank God for Kathmandu BP Church which stands as a witness for God in a land full of idolatry and superstitions. Many Churches in Nepal are Charismatic Churches and they do not teach the truth of God’s Word. The Church had packet lunch together after the worship ended at 1pm. I invited the men leaders of the Church for a farewell dinner together and we ate at a Korean restaurant. 6 of us had good fellowship over dinner.

12 October 2014 (Sun): Day 7

Today I departed back to Singapore. Rev Sychen departed one day later on Monday. Kathmandu BP Church had a Sunday service at 11am and Rev Sychen preached. I could not attend as I needed to reach the airport before 11am. Thank God for safe and early arrival at the airport. I had my personal worship with the Lord at the airport by listening to a message on my HP and praying to the Lord. It is the Lord’s Day and I wanted to spend the day remembering the Lord. Thank God for safe journey home in the flight. I was very exhausted in the week of service for the Lord and slept almost the whole flight journey in the plane.

All praise and thanks to the Lord for helping me in this one week mission trip to Nepal. Indeed the joy of the Lord is my strength (Nehemiah 8:10b).

Elder John Leong