Church of Christ
Mission USA
[printed Nov. 2008 for Oct.]
Dear brethren,                                              
       Greetings. We hope everyone will have a safe and happy Thanksgiving. Ruby has been really sick for the past several days and now I have picked up something. Sandy is trying to avoid me, trying to stay well herself, but it is hard to do in such close quarters. Virginia has moved to Shenandoah to an apartment complex. She has been busy trying to get her new neighbors to come with her to church services. So far she has been able to get one lady to come with her. Last week a very nice lady named Mary Ferrell came with Virginia. She later told Virginia that we were "the friendliest church" she had ever attended. She told Virginia that she wanted to start coming all the time, but unfortunately, she is going to have to go to a nursing home for a few weeks. She had recently had a stroke and her blood pressure had gone very high. We are hoping she will be back with us soon. Please remember her in your prayers. Amy and Peter Ray returned home last Friday from their India mission trip. She was glad that she had gone but awfully glad to get back home. She told Sandy that there is one universal language and that is the language of a smile. She enjoyed seeing the children and talked about their lovely smiles. She enjoyed teaching the ladies classes and the children’s classes. She taught at one seminar that was for the wives of elders and preachers.

      Our 2008 summer grand totals in door knocking: 1,762 doors knocked; 1,685 packets handed out; 364 DVDs; 29 BCCs signed up; 62 refused material; and I drove 3,811 miles. These have had a much better opportunity than if we had not worked in their area. The seed has been sown. The 3 night Gospel Meeting was during bad weather with only 3 visitors from the community. Sandy, I and others here have given out several DVDs not counted in the above number. Material expense for the summer is $1,452.55 spent for: DVDs, tracts, ink and paper for the introduction letter that was put in each packet. The church here at Shenandoah has borne this expense, but will need to be reimbursed for it from the mission fund. The mission fund balance as of 10-30-08 was $12,910. Up to now we have not had to use any of this fund. We have about 60 DVDs left and about 1,000 packets of tracts.

      Roger has not been able to get anything worked out with the brother in Arizona as far as doing any mission work there this winter. It is just as well, since we have not sold the house nor the church building, and we have not raised sufficient support for the mission work. With things the way they are, I think it would be foolish to leave the house unprotected (it is empty) and the church building sitting empty. As I have previously stated, after the loan, closing cost, and realtor’s fees are paid, I am willing to use whatever is left of our house money in the mission work. But if things continue to go as they are, less and less money will be available from the sale of the house because we are having to spend it on interest, etc. In other words, we are going in the hole a little more each month because of the added expenses. When I planned the mission work, I had no way of knowing the economy would get so bad. I never dreamed we would have to drop the price of the house as much as we have and still not have it sold. We will just have to ride these hard times out.

      What I plan to do is door knock in Elkton first (since much less effort has been put forth there), and if there’s time before we are able to leave here, door knock in Shenandoah and/or more across the mountain. With the DVD, we may be able to reach some honest hearted folks. This all fits the mission work plan anyway: I had talked about maybe working with a small congregation in the south in the winter. It turns out I need to stay here at Shenandoah until something gives. The only real difference will be more cost to us in heating than if we were in a more southern state. I have not given up my plan to do the mission work in the counties in other states without the church. But due to circumstances beyond my control I cannot leave Virginia yet. And besides that, there is a great need here in Virginia with 53 counties now without the church. It shouldn’t matter where we are working as long as the need is there, and there is no church in Elkton.

      Brethren, we (myself and the church here) are in serious need of your financial support. It takes money to buy the DVDs, tracts, etc. Brother Leroy Smith has been giving $20 a month and we have used that toward our gas cost. Other than that we have borne the gas expense ourselves of about $700 for the summer. Until the house sells I cannot afford a drop in salary. Please do what you can to help, and pray for our efforts and that we will sell the house soon. We greatly appreciate your contribution to the work and to us personally.

In His Service, Perry & Sandy