The Warren Family
May/June/July 2023 Newsletter
Greetings in the Name of the Lord,
As we wound down our furlough, I flew back to Albuquerque, NM, where the truck was being repaired from the thieves trying to steal it, and reunited with Rebecca and the kids. I had flown by myself up to the North West, to keep the meetings I had scheduled in Washington, Idaho, and Oregon. Immediately upon arriving back in New Mexico, Brother Tom Coletta, with Go Ye Missionary Transportation, jumped on replacing the engine in our GMC Yukon, and with him and I working three days, it was finished. I cannot thank him enough for his time and effort, it saved us thousands of dollars, and our vehicle should last for a good many years with the remanufactured engine.
As soon as the truck was good, we hit the road for Alaska, by way of Canada, picking up some more supplies on the way, and going to two more churches in Idaho and Oregon. Rebecca and Kezia’s passports never did arrive, so Jubal and I dropped Rebecca, Kezia, and Nathan off in Spokane, Washington, where they boarded a plane for Anchorage, and headed to the border. There were fires shutting down roads on the East side of the Canadian Rockies, while on the West side of the mountains, floods from heavy rain had bridges and roads washed out. After much prayer, we decided to thread the needle between them. Upon arriving at the Canadian border, we had a little excitement: I discovered Rebecca had put the wrong passport in the paper sleeve marked with my name! She had left Nathan’s, and flown back to Alaska with mine! The guard graciously allowed me to cross over into Canada anyway! Jubal and I took three days to drive through Canada, and were never even slowed down by fires or floods, with some closed roads opening up to travel mere hours before we arrived, due to rains putting out fires, but not flooding the roads! As we pulled up to the Alaskan border, we had a prayer meeting, asking God to grant us favor with the American border guards, as they are quite persnickety about letting American citizens back in without a passport. After being questioned at length, by the grace of God, we were allowed to cross the border into Alaska! God is Good!
Jubal and I continued on to North Pole, Alaska, where we attended church and crated up our supplies for the youth camp and church, in preparation for it to be barged down the Tanana and Yukon Rivers to Saint Mary’s. We carried on from there down to Anchorage, where we met up with the rest of the family, and one day later, I was on a plane by myself headed back to Saint Mary’s, Rebecca and the kids being delayed longer on the road system of Alaska to wrap up loose ends, like selling the cargo trailer to pay for shipping of the crates on the barge, dentist appointments, etcetera.
Hitting the ground in Saint Mary’s, I found the church of God in excellent spiritual health, and cannot thank Michael and Kelly Sutphin enough for the great work they did here while we were gone! The church grew while we were gone, with several people trusting Christ as Saviour, and many saved people giving testimony of the growth they had as Christians under the influence of the Sutphins! Thanks so much!
A Brother in Christ from North Carolina flew up and helped get the remanufactured boat motor we picked up in the Lower 48, trailered up to Alaska, and had barged out to Saint Mary’s on the big church boat, which needed a bigger engine due to the added weight of the cabin we built a few years ago. We took the smaller engine we had removed, and put it on the second church boat we had purchased after last youth camp. We got both boats tuned up and running well in preparation for youth camp, and it was a good thing too, as we had more and heavier gear to haul, as well as more people. With the appropriately sized engines, we used one third less gas per 90-mile round trip, and shaved a full hour off of each round trip, going from 6 ½ hours to 5 ½ hours. With gas at 8.85 per gallon, and time as scarce and precious as always, this was a huge blessing. A big thank you to all those that helped with the boats and cost of fuel.
Back in Anchorage during this time our children were blessed by the opportunity of going to youth camp with our church. This year was Nathan’s first camp and he enjoyed it immensely! And this was Jubal’s first teen camp. Since Rebecca was in town she was able to host 3 teens from our village who flew in for camp. Some of the teens parents even went to a few of the services. Camp is a huge thing for the kids here, allowing them to get away from the harsh realities of their life and really see the goodness of God, our prayer is always that they would fall in love with Jesus and on His strength, be who God wants them to be. That they would see the joys of serving the Lord over the pleasure of the flesh. It was therefore with great rejoicing upon hearing of the salvation of one our teens. Do pray for her as she is now living in Anchorage and will be attending a rough highschool. Also during the time that Rebecca and the kids were in Anchorage she was able to bring many folks to church that had recently moved from our village.
I got busy preparing for youth camp, and with the help of some brothers in Christ from Michigan, Texas, and Georgia, more land was cleared, and bigger tents set up. Thank God for the three bigger tents that were provided by folks from the Lower 48. Rebecca and the children arrived home at the same time the folks from Texas and Georgia showed up. The preparation was over, now came the big week… With the arrival of some brothers and Sisters from Oregon and Bethel, and my wife and kids, we set out for camp. It went extremely well, with mostly saved kids attending. We had 29 total, including adults, up from 23 the year before, and one lost soul received Christ as their Saviour! There was even a mom that came with her children. We taught on Precious Jewels to God, showing how Christ became sin to make us a precious jewel to him, and let the kids grub around in a tub of mud to find some precious stones we mined while on furlough. They then cleaned them, and made jewelry out of them, a picture of Christ adorning himself with his saints. Many kids grew in the Lord with this lesson, realizing that no matter what they did or someone did to them in the past, they are saved now, the stain and guilt of sin is gone, God can use them for his glory! One 18-year young man, after much conviction, and two days of counseling, was saved! Praise God! We used the same theme for our VBS for the younger kids in the village, and had more than 40 kids each day. We were so blessed this year with more kids than ever coming to youth camp and VBS. Vbs bags in mountain…
After camp was over, we began tearing it down. Some believers flew up from Idaho and South Carolina, helped get camp tore down and boated back to Saint Mary’s; we then switched gears to start making the church look better, doing trim work in the church and parsonage. It looks amazing! Trim carpentry is not a gift God gave me: I think I heard the carpenters crying in their beds at night over the mistakes I had previously made that they had to fix. A Brother from Alaska flew over and made a church sign for us, which is a huge blessing. A lot remains yet to do, but the progress made was so encouraging!
Israel J. Warren
The Warrens Cell: 907-438-6446 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org 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!