The Warren Family
Greetings in the Name of the Lord,
In the month of July, I flew over to the road system to help out at His Servants Bible Camp, up in the mountains North of Palmer, Alaska, during the teen camp. A saved teenager from our church also attended the teen camp, and gave a public testimony for the first time, as well as participating in several song specials with other teens. It is exciting to see young saved people grow in the Lord!
People are starting to come back to church, having gotten used to Corona Virus to some extent, and our 4th of July cookout had the largest gathering since the Covid19 became a thing. Pray for people to not give in to fear during these unsettling times.
We believe our family had Corona Virus, as we were all sick with flu like symptoms, and lost our sense of taste and smell. God was good, and we came out fine on the other side. We cancelled church till we were all better, and then resumed life as normal. Thank God our taste and smell came back! I couldn’t imagine going my whole life without these two senses, going without them for a short time made me more thankful than ever for things like these we take for granted! I believe many lost people succumb to fear when they contract Covid, having witnessed this first hand: what a blessing being a Christian and knowing my life is in God’s hands, I will not die until he allows it, and if I do I go to heaven, and so can live in peace during my time here on earth, come what may. Not being stressed out when you are sick definitely helps you heal faster. I gave my family to God when I got married and had children, and trust Him with them, even if He decides to take them from me. We have decided as a family not to miss out on the blessings in life from God by giving in to fear of a virus, which is a good thing, as due to Rebecca’s father having heart surgery, Jubal getting shot, going to youth camp for the younger kids and then again for teen camp, and for working on the church boat, we have traveled more this year than any other since we moved to Saint Mary’s.
Halfway through the month of August, I flew over to the road system to begin working on the church boat, desiring to get it ready for starting our own youth camp next summer. I had put it on the barge in July to ship it to the road system, and hid my GPS in the plywood console so I could get the barge’s route from Saint Mary’s to Nenana, roughly 900 miles on the Yukon and Tanana Rivers. I figured having the barges route on my GPS to follow back when I drove the boat back down the rivers to Saint Mary’s would be a great help, as the barge knows the deepest channels, and would keep me from wasting time looking for deep water where the rivers braid out and become shallow, or even worse, grounding the boat.
John Pinnix, with Remote Alaska Missions, picked up the boat in Nenana when the barge arrived at the road system, and hauled it to a friend’s house in the mountains North of Palmer. The Tuttle family let me use their spacious garage to work on the boat, put me up in their motorhome, and cooked delicious meals for me and others who volunteered to work on the boat. Two of my brothers, Jed and Luke, flew up from Florida to help weld on the boat, and another young man named Brandon, from Oregon, helped out as well. A brother in the Lord named Gary Feaster, who owns a welding fabrication and supply shop, sold us material at his cost, let us use his metal shears and break, and gave much advice on how to do things, saving much time and money. Bible Baptist Church of Fairbanks let us use a church van for the duration of the stay there.
The lion’s share of the work was done at the Tuttle’s house, with Tracy Tuttle ramrodding the project, and Rose Tuttle boosting morale with home cooked meals. I learned the fundamentals of welding aluminium, got to fellowship with my two brothers, and many other Christians, I cannot properly convey how thankful I am to everyone who helped on this project!
After over two weeks of working on the boat cabin to keep everyone, especially small children and womenfolk, dry during drives to youth camp and other villages to minister, it was done. A few days into September, Brother Pinnix hauled the church boat back to Nenana, and after a good night’s rest, my brothers and I launched the boat down the Tanana River. One reason for driving it down the river was to save money, as the barge company charges quite a lot to ship vehicles on the barge, and another reason was also to give us an opportunity to minister to folks from villages along the way. Many of the villages were shut down to nonresidents due to the Corona Virus, and by the end of the trip only I was only able to give Gospel tracts and minister to some men from the villages of Tanana and Galena that I met at The Yukon River Lodge, a business that primarily lodges boat and bush plane travelers, but that also sells fuel.
We left the road system with 235 gallons of gas, and after 350 river miles topped of with 81 gallons at The Yukon River Lodge, and went 550 more miles down the Yukon from there, arriving at Saint Mary’s on the 9th of September, safe and sound: we had no mechanical trouble with the boat, didn’t get grounded on a gravel bar, and had no bear trouble, thank God! It rained for four days straight, but because of the newly constructed cabin on the boat, we didn’t get wet, which was a huge blessing, as the temperature fluctuated from the 50’s to the 30’s. We thank everyone who gave towards this need, from shipping the barge upstream to the road system, to helping buy parts and materials, helping with logistics to get from point a to point b, helping buy fuel, giving advice, providing meals, but most of all, for praying. We are looking forward to starting up the youth camp next summer, please pray for wisdom and funds as we begin preparing for this new chapter of our ministry here in the bush village of Saint Mary’s.
In September, we were able to start holding church services in Pitka’s Point again, in a person’s house. We are still unable to hold services in the village hall, due to Corona Virus restrictions, but are praising God for the family that allows us to have them in their home.
I had some issues with my heart in September, having chest and arm pains, shortness of breath, low blood pressure, and had to stop what I was doing and sit down for several hours on the edge of the tundra, where I was helping some friends pack their moose they had harvested back to the boat (Winter is coming, better be prepared!). It took almost a week to get back to normal from this episode. My heart had begun giving me trouble this summer when I was trying to level the church building by myself, as no work crews have been able to come out to help due to Corona Virus restrictions, and the two young men who were coming to church and helped out no longer come. I have been extremely busy this summer since then, and after arriving back home from the boat trip, helped several families pack their moose to the boat to put it up for winter, and the moose packing was the tipping point for my heart. It has stopped before when I was 19, and doctors have not been able to figure out why my heart has acted up in the past, and whether or not I should go to the doctor about this, as I do not want to rack up hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical expenses, only to be told at the end of it all that no one knows why I’m having trouble. Please pray for healing and wisdom as to what course to take.
The raping of women and children has increased since December of 2019, please pray for wisdom as Rebecca and I counsel and witness to the victims and the rapists. People are sinning and hurting themselves and others, please pray for souls to be saved, and specifically for one family to be freed from a sin that has plagued their family for generations, causing the men and boys to become hard hearted, and the women and children to lose faith in everything, even God. Pray God will keep dealing with hearts.
Once again, we wanted to bring to your attention that we have recently changed our ministry email address and phone number, and my new cell number is 907-438-6446, and the new email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Christ, Israel J. Warren
The Warrens Cell: 907-438-6446 Email: email@example.com Mailing Address: PO Box 143 Saint Mary’s, AK 99658
Sending Church: Ind. Bap. Church of Anchorage, 1801 E. 68th Ave, Anchorage, AK 99507 Phone: 907-562-3004
Support Address: Faith Baptist Church c/o M.A.J.D. (include missionary’s name in note on check) PO Box 329 Cropwell, AL 35054 Phone: 205-365-3165
NOTE: Please send any personal correspondence, such as cards and letters, directly to our PO Box. Thank you!