The Western District Welcomes You!

Thank you for visiting the Western District Foreign Mission's Department blog. Our intent is to provide you, the pastors, ministers, and saints of the Western District and the United Pentecostal Church International as well as our friends who would like to visit a place to be informed of events happening in our district and to share their thoughts concerning missions with us. We appreciate you taking the time to look over our site, to read the different posts, and last but not least to share your thoughts.


Missionaries traveling in our district:

May 2012

~Dwane Abernathy - Belize, Central America
~Robert McFarland - Israel/Palestine

June 2012

~Robert McFarland - Israel/Palestine, Middle East
~Jason Long - Nicaragua, Central America

July 2012

~Crystal Reece - Tonga, South Pacific
~John Hemus - United Kingdom, Europe

August 2012

~Crystal Reece - Tonga, South Pacific
~Cynthia White - Jordan, Middle East


Saturday, December 31, 2011

~It's New Year's Eve - Celebrate


We are at the end of the road in 2011 with only a few hours left before beginning the trek into a New Year...

...thanking God for all He has done in 2011.

Expecting GREATER things from God in 2012!

Ephesians 3:19-21

19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,

21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.

The BEST is yet to come...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

~Merry Christmas from the WD FMD

"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a savior, which is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:11

Merry Christmas!

WD Foreign Missions Board:
Michael Hanks
John Thomas
Jerry Powell
Don Demyan
Clayton Brown
Morgan Underwood

~Merry Christmas from the David Bernard Family

Friday, December 23, 2011

~Merry Christmas from the Suppan family - Austria

Dear friends and family,

We would like to extend our warmest 
Christmas Greetings to you and your loved
ones, and hope you will be able to spend 
many enjoyable hours with those close to 

The Suppan Family,

Bernhard & Shelley, Joshua & Lela, Savannah

The Christmas Story as told by Luke

In those days it occurred that a decree went
out from Caesar Augustus that the whole 
Roman empire should be registered. This was
the first enrollment, and it was made when 
Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all the
people were going to be registered, each to 
his own city or town. And Joseph also went up
from Galilee from the town of Nazareth to 
Judea, to the town of David, which is called 
Bethlehem, because he was of the house and 
family of David, To be enrolled with Mary, his 
espoused (married) wife, who was about to 
become a mother. And while they were there,
the time came for her delivery, And she gave
birth to her Son, her Firstborn; and she 
wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid 
Him in a manger, because there was no room
or place for them in the inn.

And in that vicinity there were shepherds 
living [out under the open sky] in the field
watching [in shifts] over their flock by night.
And behold, an angel of the Lord stood by 
them, and the glory of the Lord flashed and 
shone all about them, and they were terribly
frightened. But the angel said to them, Do not
be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of
a great joy which will come to all the people.
For to you is born this day in the town of David
a Savior, Who is Christ (the Messiah) the Lord!
And this will be a sign for you [by which you 
will recognize Him]: you will find [after search-
ing] a Baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and
lying in a manger. Then suddenly there appear-
ed with the angel an army of the troops of 
heaven (a heavenly knighthood), praising God 
and saying, Glory to God in the highest 
[heaven], and on earth peace among men with
whom He is well pleased [men of goodwill, of 
His favor]. When the angels went away from 
them into heaven, the shepherds said one to 
another, Let us go over to Bethlehem and see 
this thing (saying) that has come to pass, 
which the Lord has made known to us. So they
went with haste and [by searching] found Mary
and Joseph, and the Baby lying in a manger
And when they saw it, they made known what
had been told them concerning this Child, And
all who heard it were astounded and marveled
at what the shepherds told them. But Mary was
keeping within herself all these things (say-
ings), weighing and pondering them in her 
heart. And the shepherds returned, glorify-
ing and praising God for all the things they 
had heard and seen, just as it had been told

Luke 2:1-20 (Amplified Bible)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

~URGENT Appeal for the Philippines - Please HELP!

DECEMBER 22, 2011 · 10:04 PM

Urgent Appeal for The Philippines

Please continue to pray for the people in the Philippines. Flooding caused by the recent Typhoon has caused massive destruction. Flood waters rushing through towns seem to wash away everything in its path.  Thousands are without food, water and shelter. Bodies line the streets waiting to be identified. The stench of death is all around. Those who survived are now cold, exhausted and terrified. The next few days will be critical. In the aftermath of such a crisis, hunger and disease caused by stagnant water and tainted supplies will be two main areas of  concern. In a country where approximately 30% of the population live below the poverty level the loss of homes, food and income will cause further devastation to these families.

You can help those in need by visiting and donating to our General Fund! Your donations will be sent to help those in the greatest need. To those in need no gift is too small.  You can also mail your donations to our office: 3333-1 Rue Royale, St. Charles, MO 63301. Thank you for your prayers and support. We will continue to post updates as they become available.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

~CSI - An URGENT Appeal for HELP!

Compassion Services International
We are appealing to anyone that can donate to help those affected by Typhoon Washi!

Typhoon Washi has devastated the Southern Philippines. The violent storm slammed ashore on Mindanao island this past weekend while its residents slept. The storm sent torrents of water and mud through the villages. The hardest hit areas were Iligan and Cagayan de Oro City. Flood waters washed away entire houses while the families were still inside. One such area located in Iligran that is between two rivers had 70% of its homes washed away. Reports have come in that more than 1000 people have perished. Hundreds of people drowned in flash flooding while others perished in sudden landslides, which reportedly engulfed entire villages.This storm has affected more than 300,000 people. Rescue efforts are still underway to search for the hundreds that are still missing.

We have received word from those on the ground that the people affected are in need of food, water and clothing. You can help by making a donation so that financial help can be sent to supply these most basic necessities. Financial donations are the quickest way to get help to the area. At this time of year while we celebrate the greatest gift we have been given please consider giving to help those who have lost so much. Please keep the people of the Philippines in your prayers. The rebuilding process will be a long road.

To make a donation please visit our homepage at Donations can also be sent directly to our office: 3333-1 Rue Royale, St. Charles, MO 63301.

Click the picture below to donate now

Compassion Services International
A non-profit organization to help the hurting around the globe 

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

~Urgent Need in the Country of Turkey


Recent earthquakes in Turkey have caused severe devastationMore than 2,260 buildings in Van and the vicinity were damaged or destroyed. There have been hundreds of confirmed deaths and thousands of injuries. Tens of thousands appear to be homeless as many families have had to evacuate their current homes to seek safety.  We are urging everyone who can, to donate to Compassion Services International’s General Fund so that  we can send financial support to Turkey. We have been notified by those on the ground of several families that have lost everythingThese families have had to relocate and are now in the process of rebuilding their lives by finding a permanent residence and new jobs. Together, we can help them in the interim by providing  funds for transportation and temporary housingThank you in advance for helping those in need and for helping to fulfill Matthew 25:40 and James 1:27. May God’s blessings be upon  you this Christmas season as you give.  You can donate now to our General Fund by visiting our  homepage, You can also mail your donation to our office: 3333-1 Rue Royale, St. Charles, MO 63301.

~'Washi all Away' by Missionary Kelley Dibble

Washi all Away

'Twas the weekend before Christmas
And all through the town
No one believed the Weather Man's frown

"The typhoon will come
It is on its way"
But no one believed
One word he did say

You've likely read the report(s) by now. I haven't yet. We were on Guam Island when like a thief in the night tropical storm Washi struck the island of Mindanao (not Luzon where we reside).

"Did you hear about the typhoon that struck Cagayan de Oro?"

Mindanao? I thought. On Mindanao? I thought they never get typhoons or tropical storms. But it was gravely true.

For three days they were warned. It won't affect us down here, they yawned, slapping the snooze button as they turned over on their mats. No one prepared, no one believed, no had one listened.

In a recent report by our district presbyter of Northern Mindanao is line after line of horrifying news. Most are five words divided by a comma. To you and I "house destroyed, all belongings damaged" are ink on paper, images on a screen. Just another report.

Iligan City (pronounced ill ee GONE)

Ramirez family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Caputol family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Gatin family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Bangcon Family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Maglasang family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Siarot family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Cadampog family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Apalla family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
L. Apalla family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Tutor family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
G. Tutor family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
A. Tutor family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Saa family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Actub family: belongings/clothes damaged
Canoy family: some belongings damaged
Abelardo family: belongings damaged
Englatiera family: clothes soaked with mud
Cobillo family: clothes/belongings soaked with mud

We don't see the faces,
nor feel the mud,
can't smell the mold
or hear the heartbreak.

The report concludes with:

Cagayan de Oro City (pronounced cah guy ON day OH row)
Rullida family: house destroyed, all belongings damaged
Quidet family: clothes/belongings soaked with mud

The church and parsonage were flooded and some belongings are damaged. We presently have no electricity.

The church has donated P7,000 for food assistance to those affected. Some of the brethren donated rice and canned goods.

If anyone is interested in helping, it is desperately needed and greatly appreciated. . . .

Silent night, holy night
All is calm, all is . . .


We hope to either go or send funds to help. That's the least we can do! Thank you for your prayers for these precious people.

- from the Blog written by Sis. Kelley Dibble, missionary to the Philippines and South Pacific.

Used with permission of the author.

*Note! Picture added by editor of this blog.

Monday, December 19, 2011

~More Information on Tropical Cyclone Washi/Philippines

Washi – known in the Philippines as Sendong – brought flooding and mudslides that resulted in over 650 deaths and 800 still missing.
Tropical Storm Washi was the 27th tropical system to develop in the western Pacific typhoon season. It ultimately brought extreme flooding and mudslides that resulted in over 650 deaths with nearly 800 people still missing across the southern Philippines.

Washi formed on December 13, 2011 as tropical depression 27W. Washi formed in the north Pacific ocean and strengthened into a strong tropical storm with maximum sustained winds around 65 miles per hour. Washi intensified prior to making landfall in the Philippines on December 15, 2011. Heavy rain increased in the system, and Washi brought torrential rains and mudslides to the Philippines.
Tropical Storm Washi actually has two names. Storms that develop in each basin, such as the western Pacific and the Atlantic, are given names after reaching a minimum strength of 39 mph or higher. Each basin has a six year list that is used to name the storms. However, some countries choose to name the storms themselves. The Philippines actually named this storm Sendong. It is important to note that the media will reference Sendong as “Washi”, which is the official name of the storm in the western Pacific. For less confusion, we will call this storm “Washi” for the remainder of this post.
Washi’s convection increased, which meant thunderstorms and heavier rain bands were increasing in the system. An increase in convection on satellite from a tropical cyclone typically shows an intensifying storm. The storm moved over the mountainous regions of the Philippines on Mindanao Island, producing nonstop rain for at least 12 hours across the region. The heavy rains ran down the mountain side causing trees to become uprooted and cars being overturned in many areas. The Red Cross in the Philippines report that at least 346 died in Cagayan de Oro and 206 in Iligan. The death toll has already reached over 650 deaths, and that number is projected to increase as many isolated villages affected by Washi have not been assisted due to the overwhelmed disaster relief personnel in other regions of the country. There could be some families completely washed out and perished. 
- for more very interesting information on development of this storm click on 'Read More' below.

~Photos of Devastation in Southern Philippines

A picture is worth a thousand words...

Please keep the Southern Philippine Islands in your prayers.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

~Tropical Storm Ravages Southern Philippines

Residents rescued following flash floods
As a storm that killed more than 650 in the southern Philippines raged outside the store where she works, Amor Limbago worriedly called home to check on her parents, but their cellphones just kept ringing and later went dead.

Limbago, 21, rushed home as soon as the flash floods receded and confirmed her worst fear: Her parents and seven other relatives were gone, swept away from their hut by the river. They had eagerly planned a small Christmas dinner in that hut just days earlier.

"I returned and saw that our house was completely gone," a weeping Limbago told The Associated Press from Cagayan de Oro city. "There was nothing but mud all over and knee-deep floodwaters."
Tropical Storm Washi blew away Sunday after devastating a wide swath of the mountainous region on Mindanao island, which is unaccustomed to major storms.

Most of the victims were asleep Friday night when flash floods cascaded down mountain slopes with logs and uprooted trees, swelling rivers and killing at least 652 people. The late-season tropical storm turned the worst-hit coastal cities of Cagayan de Oro and nearby Iligan into muddy wastelands filled with overturned cars and broken trees.

Most of the dead were children and women, Philippine Red Cross Secretary General Gwendolyn Pang said. At least 808 others were still missing, mostly in the two cities, she said.

Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and top military officials flew to Cagayan de Oro and Iligan to help oversee search-and-rescue efforts and deal with thousands of displaced villagers. Among the items urgently needed are coffins and body bags, said Benito Ramos, who heads the government's disaster-response agency.

"It's overwhelming. We didn't expect these many dead," said Ramos, adding that authorities were continuing to find bodies floating at sea.

Although the disaster-prone Philippines is lashed by about 20 typhoons and storms annually, the devastation shocked many, coming close to Christmas -- the predominantly Roman Catholic nation's most-awaited time for family reunions. Army officials in the south said they canceled Christmas parties and would donate the food to homeless survivors.

Limbago said she and her mother, Jean, 50, and father Amancio, 63, planned to have a simple Christmas dinner of spaghetti. Those plans had evaporated Sunday as she and surviving relatives checked crowded morgues, hospitals and evacuation centers for any sign of her missing parents.
Others lost homes and belongings but were happy to have survived.

Edmund Rubio, a 44-year-old engineer, said he, his wife and two children scrambled to the second floor of their house in Iligan city as floodwaters engulfed the first floor, destroying his TV set and other appliances and washing away his car and motorcycle.

Amid the panic, he heard a loud pounding on his door as neighbors living in nearby one-story houses pleaded with him to allow them up to his second floor. He said he brought 30 neighbors to the safety of his house, which later shook when a huge floating log slammed into it.

"It's the most important thing, that all of us will still be together this Christmas," Rubio told the AP.

About a block away from Rubio's house, rescuers used a backhoe and shovels to search for 19 people in the muddy ruins of a two-story house that collapsed when it was hit by a massive log. They dug out 11 bodies from the site Saturday, witnesses said.

Army officers reported unidentified bodies piled up in morgues in Cagayan de Oro, where electricity was restored in some areas, although the city of more than 500,000 people remained without tap water.

At least 346 died in Cagayan de Oro and 206 in Iligan, the Red Cross said. The death toll was expected to rise because many isolated villages still had not been reached by overwhelmed disaster-response personnel.

"Our fear is there may have been whole families that perished so there's nobody to report what happened," Pang said.

Both Iligan, a bustling industrial center about 485 miles southeast of Manila, and Cagayan de Oro were filled with scenes of destruction and desperation.

A lone worker gingerly embalmed scores of bodies laid side by side in an Iligan city funeral parlor. Outside the embalming room, seven white coffins were placed in a corridor, surrounded by weeping relatives.

"Many mothers, fathers were walking from one funeral parlor to another, looking for their children," said army Maj. Eugenio Osias, who led a rescue effort in Cagayan de Oro.

Ramos attributed the high casualties "partly to the complacency of people because they are not in the usual path of storms" despite warnings by officials that one was approaching.

In just 12 hours, Washi dumped more than a month of average rain on Mindanao.

Thousands of soldiers and hundreds of local police, reservists, coast guard officers and civilian volunteers were mobilized for rescue efforts, but were hampered by flooded-out roads and lack of electricity. Rescuers in boats rushed offshore to save people swept out to sea.

- from

Thursday, December 15, 2011

~Merry Christmas from Gary/Kristi Landaw - Puerto Rico


Merry Christmas to you and yours.

This past year we have been blessed to be able to not only pastor a
church in Puerto Rico but also have been working to see new areas 
hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have been planting the word of 
God and watering with prayer and believing God for a wonderful 
Harvest soon. As recent as last night we had an outdoor service in 
Santurce where we had several new visitors. It is so exciting working
for Jesus!

Trinidad and Tobago is reaching out into new areas also as the lead-
ers and saints are reaching out to the areas of Scarborough Tobago 
and Arima, Trinidad. This year we have seen a good harvest of souls
and anticipate an even greater harvest in 2012. Though we do not 
live in Trinidad we have been there quite frequently preaching, teaching
and giving direction to the church.

It has been a wonderful year to work in the Kingdom of God. We
have seen souls saved, people healed, and delivered. It is such a 
blessing to be able to be ambassadors of Jesus Christ.

God has also blessed us to be able to see all of our children during
the year. Amy is working in Spain as an English teacher and also
is an AIM worker in Madrid. Joseph and Cassandra were on a very
short deputation and return to Trinidad for a few months and then
in July 2012 pick up their deputation travels again. Melisa and 
Jordan are involved in the church they attend in Martinsville. This
year we will all be able to spend Christmas together and for that
we are very thankful.

Thank you for your prayers and support. We do hope you
continue to fervently pray for us
. We really need to see a break-
through in these new areas of labor
. In Jesus name strongholds
will be broken

God bless you.

Gary and Kristi Landaw
Missionaries with UPCI
Ways to communicate with us:
Phone 787.993.1540 Facebook:GaryKristiLandaw Twitter:GaryLandaw

Monday, December 12, 2011

~We're Back - Michael and Christine McKinnies/AIMers to Latvia

Panoramic Riga
New Friendship
alex and olja
Alexandra is looking forward to building a frienship with Olja. A sweet young lady she met through AIMer, Rachel Zehm.
Riga Worship Team
Worship team
Alexandra has joined the Worship Team for Hall Church. Here she is singing the song "Here I Am To Worship" in Latvian. The woman on the keyboard is Vineta, a Latvian national and member of the Church in Riga.
Red Cross Ministry
mark at red cross
Missionary Mark Shutes and interpreter are ministering to a group of men at the local Red Cross.
A Blessing!
constance at red cross
Konstance, a faithful member of the Church in Riga, has been a great blessing as an interpreter to Missionary Mark Shutes and myself for the Red Cross Ministry. She is a wonderful young lady. We enjoy seeing how God is using her and working in her life.
Follow Us!
Like us on FacebookFollow us on Twitter
Join Our Mailing List
Partners in Missions
For monthly pledges and one -time offerings call Pat Morgan at World Evangelism Center with our Global Missions Division #13297.
For one-time offerings you may also click one of the Paypal links below.

10 25 50 100 250 500
Mail to
Michael McKinnies
c/o Evelyn Curry
32817 56th Ave.
Paw Paw, MI 49079
We're Back!
We have finally arrived back in 
Riga, Latvia! We would like to 
offer a great big THANK YOU
to all of our Partners in Missions,
to those that have been with us 
since the beginning of this journey
and to those who have recently 
come aboard. We would not be 
here without your prayers and 
financial support. We will forever
be grateful for you help in making
an impact in the nation of Latvia 
for the Kingdom of God. 
Remember to cover our family 
in prayer as well as the work here
in Latvia. May God continue to 
bless you as you sacrifice to give.

Thank You to Pastor Pickard for 
allowing me to be a part of the 
Ontario Missions Conference. I 
would also like to thank all the 
Pastors and Churches who allow-
ed me and my family to share
our burden and vision for 
missions in Latvia while we were
in the StatesA SPECIAL 'Thank
You' to Bro. Vic and Sis. Ginger
for sponsoring the Project for 
Alexandra and Preston. They 
each now have their own real bed
with an attached desk and shelf 
unit for homeschooling. This 
personalized space in a shared
room means a lot to them.
We had the honor of celebrating 
Thanksgiving with many wonder-
ful people, who we count not 
only as friends but also as 'family.'  
We were blessed to share this 
day with Nathan and Kaylana 
Miller and Family (American's 
residing/working in Latvia), Tony
and Shasta Miller and Family 
(Missionaries to Lithuania), Nate
and Ingunn Turner and Family 
(Missionaries to Estonia), Cilija
(AIM from Norway to Estonia), 
Rachel Zehm (AIM to Latvia) 
and of course Missionaries Mark
and Robin Shutes. We all enjoyed
a fabulous turkey dinner with all 
the trimmings and a fantastic time 
of fellowship and games! Almost 
felt like 'home.'
Praise Reports from
        Team Latvia
Souls for the Kingdom
We are so excited about what
God is doing! There have been
a total of 17 baptized in Jesus
Name and 12 have been filled 
with the gift of the Holy Ghost
We are part of an awesome 
team in Latvia and we have an
awesome group of Partners In 
Missions supporting us both in
prayer and in finances. More 
importantly, we serve an awe-
some God! To God be the Glory!

Miraculous Healing
While we were in the United 
States a young couple was 
brought to the house church in the
Kengarags Region of Riga. They
were in desperate need of a 
miracle in their lives. This was an 
unmarried couple who were 
expecting the birth of their first 
child in a couple of months. The 
couple explained their devastating
situation. The young woman had 
tested positive for HIV and there
was a fear that the child would 
have it as well.