“I feel I have gained more than I have given”
“There was so much variety and contrasts each day”
“Its like being on a Senior’s Bible Class Camp”
“Out of their poverty, the Fijians are so generous and friendly”
As the sun sets on this Golden Oldies Mission, our conversations and partnership with the Fijian Churches, people and villages have continued to evolve.
Here is a Summary of some of the Mission highlights:
• Collecting and taking with us 5 sewing machines, medical equipment, 200+ children’s story books, a set of Tyndale Theological Bible Study books, science curriculum books and teacher materials, stationery, and craft materials. Much of these items donated by the wider supporters of the group.
• Provide week-long biblical studies to students and ministers at the Bible College
• Being offered the privilege to preach in several churches
• To sew and complete the first Fijian uniforms for the children at the orphanage
• Teaching crafts from ladies who travelled from throughout Fiji so the skills learnt could be used to start their own small businesses back in their own villages
• Serving and offering nursing training at a community Health Centre
• Visit and encourage prisoners at a Suva Prison
• Be invited guests at the NZ High Commission and talk about the mission work being carried out in Fiji
• To offer pastoral support to clergy and people coming to the Suva Anglican Cathedral
• Teaching science curriculum to high school students during their holidays; and providing teaching support to their teachers
• Visit villages, churches, old peoples home, hospital, high school and squatter settlements to learn about their lives, and encourage them through songs, testimonies, prayer, and conversations with them
Providing financial partnership from the team and supporters fundraising and personal gifts to:
• A small town church to start a prison ministry after the team had pioneered a visit to the Suva prison near their church; and support their church ladies who volunteer at the local maternity hospital, next to where our Nurse Adele was serving
• To support Baden College specialising in second-chance education for students predominately from the surrounding squatter settlements in achieving an education qualification
• Helping two widows in a squatter settlement with the purchase for a water tank for her and her two grandchildren she cares for; and paying for the reconnection of power after the last cyclone to a another widow who is also raising her grandchildren
• Covering the transportation costs to allow the woman to travel to Suva for the craft workshop. Some leaving at 4.30am to attend the day’s sessions
• To provide the first ever commercial washing machine for the Bible College. Washing 30-sets of sheets after we left, as well as all the kitchen and bathroom linen, has up till now all been done by hand, every time guests stay there.
• Support a young lady who volunteers at the College to travel overseas for the first time ever to a youth leadership conference in Tonga in December
So now as the sun sets on this mission, an overriding theme has been, a heartfelt thanks to the people we have met, the level of scarcity of resources they have, and the encouragement we have been able to bring to the people we have visited throughout this mission.
“For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile [Fijian and Kiwi]
–the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for,
“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in?
And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?
And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?
And how can anyone preach unless they are sent?
As it is written:
“How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
Romans 10 v.12-15
On behalf of our 24-member team, aged mainly between 60-80+ years
a big vinaka vitalevu to you all, and thanks be to God.
‘Keep the enthusiasm of your youth
and mix it with the wisdom of your old age’
Graeme and Jane Mitchell
Golden Oldies Mission Leaders