Serve the World

SayingYes2Love means reaching out into the world in as many ways as possible. We truly seek to make disciples of all people and share with them the love of Christ. We have had our lives changed because of Him, and we want to share that with the world. There are several ways we seek to make a difference in the world. One of those ways is by sending our people into the world to say Yes2Love. 

From the Blog

Brad & Gail Pontius Visit Kurdistan
May 18, 2017
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Kurdistan is a region in Northern Iraq with limited self-governance. The Kurdistan Regional Government or the KRG includes the larger cities of Mosul on the Tigris River and Erbil to the East. Mosul is the ancient city of Nineveh.  The Kurds are proud decedents of the Medes, spread over Turkey, Syria, Iran and Iraq. 

Throughout the history the Kurds have pushed back against the Turks, Arabs and the Persians to establish an independent state - but have always been defeated. Most recently the Iraqi Kurds were victims of genocide by chemical weapons unleashed on them by Saddam Husain in 1988 killing over 5,000 with poison gas.

In their struggle for independence, they have grown a strong sense of empathy for the oppressed. They are now hosting over two million displaced people from the occupation of the Islamic State in their region and beyond.

During Easter, we visited several Christian villages that had been occupied by ISIS. Some houses were flattened by mortars and air strikes.  Centrally located churches were used as ISIS headquarters, sniper towers and shooting galleries.  Graffiti disrespected the cross and our faith.  Books and musical instruments were burned.  Hatred and violence hung in the air.

The village of Telleskof had over 7000 inhabitants before ISIS arrived.  In the middle of the night, fleeing members of the neighboring village warned them that ISIS was moving quickly in their direction.  They grabbed what they could and ran for their lives.  Fortunately, the Christians of Tellesckof escaped with few casualties. 

We were able to survey some of the damage around Telleskof and visit with a few of the 400 brave residents who have returned. They know that it will be a long time until the village establishes a “new normal” – but they are thankful to be there to help make that happen.  They couldn’t stop praising their neighbors from Batnia who fled a fierce attack to warn Telleskof that ISIS was coming – saving their lives.

The majority of the villagers of Telleskof are living in IDP camps. They left their productive land, their properties and their family savings in the houses that ISIS occupied.  Their lives had been very much like ours in middle class America.  It’s been 3 years now, and they are still living day to day in tent cities with hope of returning someday.

Resettlement priorities begin with clean water, electric power and medical care. This village of Telleskof is the place where our funds were used restore water lines and a back-up generator for the medical clinic. Phase 2 of our project is to dig a well to provide clean water for the village.

We hope to continue to help the Telleskof community - maybe even go there to help rebuild homes, clean up rubble and patch bullet holes. We have been given a God-shaped opportunity to come along side these Christian brothers and sisters – to assist them during their time of need.

Please keep the people of Kurdistan in your prayers. And ask God what role you can play in their resettlement.  And if you’re interested, stay tuned for a more thorough report on our time in Kurdistan – coming soon.

From the Blog

The Empowered to Connect simulcast was a success!
Apr 19, 2017
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This experience brought together individuals, as well as two couples from southern Indiana who are considering foster care, are currently fostering children or have adopted children. Participants came from different walks of life, have children from infant to adult, and have experienced the power of God's love as he works within our families. 

We received encouragement and instruction from researchers and therapists who practice Truth Based Relational Intervention strategies to help parents effectively connect with and raise up children who have come from hard places (i.e., abuse, neglect, etc.). It can be so easy to see a child act out or respond in a way that is inappropriate and draw the conclusion that he is expressing willful disobedience. We learned through this training to consider a different perspective:  the child is living in survival mode, responding the only way he knows how.  This shift allows you to see the hurt and the need being expressed that your love, God's love through you, can offer the child alternatives.

Please pray for our ministry and for God's direction as we seek outreach opportunities such as this simulcast to support families. 

Julia Rademacher
On Target – Adoption & Foster Care

From the Blog

Child Rescue
Apr 04, 2017
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The Pourhouse Café According to UNICEF, and estimated 150 million children world wide are engaged in child labor. Millions are sold into slavery with the promise of a better life. CICM is committed to "buying children back" and providing opportunity for them to live a purposeful life in Central India. PHC is proud to be partners with CICM. Thank you for your support

From the Blog

Site visit to Agua Viva-Guatemala Update
Jan 17, 2017
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Sherwood Oaks has had a partnership with Agua Viva Children’s Home in Guatemala since 2003.  The partnership has provided opportunity for many from Sherwood Oaks to get to know and sponsor children who live at the home or go to the school.  We have also helped with many work projects that have helped AV with necessary enhancements to their property – from building a school for 300 village children, to digging trenches for bio drains to reroute animal waste as fertilizer – to paving the streets of the ‘colonia’ next to the home.  Every year high school and university students travel to Agua Viva to experience life outside of the USA for the first time.  The children, the staff, the teachers, and especially the cooks at Agua Viva create a positive environment to learn about life outside of our ‘comfort zone’ at home.  Many smiles and tears have been shared there – and many hearts touched through serving.

“The purpose of life is not to be happy.  It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” RW Emerson





From the Blog

Kurdistan Christian Assistance
Oct 16, 2016
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Sherwood Oaks is collecting financial donations through December to assist Christian families in Kurdistan, Northern Iraq who have been displaced by the ISIS invasion.

These brothers and sisters were suddenly forced from their properties by ISIS, leaving their houses and all possessions behind. They have relocated in temporary camps for Internally Displaced People from the Plains of Nineveh. They are thankful to be alive, but struggling to survive.

We have been asked by the Kurdistan Ministry of Christian Affairs to help 125,000 Christian families with the purchase of generators, fuel, cooling units, Quonset huts to use as school rooms and medical clinics, as well as long-term medications for diabetes and hypertension.

What a great alternative Christmas gift from your family that will make a difference in the lives of many who are suffering.

Please check at the kiosk in the foyer for a brochure and giving form to designate your donations. You can also give online at the link below, select 'Kurdistan' in the pull down box.  
The goal is $30,000. We will keep you informed on our progress!

Donate Now

Join us on a future mission trip:

Fam Camp on the Rez

Sherwood Oaks is proud to sponsor over 35 missionaries and mission organizations around the world.

Meet Our Mission Partners

 

Brad Pontius

Local & Global Outreachoffice: 812.334.0206, x214

Nancy Barrow

Involvement Systems Manageroffice: 812.334.0206, x212

Norma Landgraff

Global Outreach Assistant/Iglesia Hispana Coordinator.office: 812.334.0206 x254

Connie Phares

Involvement and Outreach Assistantoffice: 812.334.0206 x 254


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