Greetings in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! We write to you excitedly from Batticaloa, Sri Lanka! We have made it to the town of Mylambapaly, where the Vocational Training Centre is being built.
We have been traveling from city to city as we have been tending important tasks for the construction of the Centre. Therefore, we send our utmost apologies for some of the delays of our reports because of the lack of a Wi-Fi connection. Nonetheless, we are enjoying the process of journaling, being attentive in every meeting, jotting down changes, and inputting ideas for new things to come.
Since the peak of the pandemic in this nation, construction workers have been placed a bit behind in their schedule because of the country-wide lockdowns. Now that there is a steady incline of openings for workers, we can meet with our head construction workers and finalize very important groundwork finishing that will expedite our Training Centre construction.
From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for your continued prayers in this regard. We ask that you keep this in your prayers because once the tiling and furniture implementation, a great phase of the building will be finished. For this to be done smoothly and on time, we need the status of the country to be open. Manufacturing and product distribution heavily depend on the steady opening of all companies that deal with interior design.
Since cases are rising in the country, we need to pray that there will be divine protection over the nation, and it will not undergo another lockdown. If so, this will impact the process of construction. We pray that there will be no hindrances, so that the building will be constructed, and we can launch it soon for students to be cultivated into disciples! Below are some photographs of the work being done. We had the opportunity to meet with our head engineer, construction workers, a representative from Lanka Tiles to set in motion the interior/exterior works that need to be done.
The middle, top row picture is of Diva – our head engineer who has been working efficiently on the Training Centre. Even amidst this lockdown, Diva has been in constant contact with Pastor Vincent, ensuring that the goal and target of the Training Centre is met in accordance with the agenda and vision of the Church. Pastor Justin, from Hope City, said this so thoroughly in his sermon to us regarding the Mission work – God’s delays are not His denial.
This is true in relation to the progress of the Centre. We might have expected a specific due date but surrounding circumstances have pushed it thus far. All we know is that God has an agenda, and this is all according to His time and plan. Who would have thought that two of His missionaries would get the opportunity to be involved in this work process?
We will carry these stories, these experiences, this foundation with us. These will be testimonies for the incoming students who will learn from these milestones. It is our job to look at what our leaders do and how they build—transferring that to the next generation. We are excited to see God working through each vessel.
We had the opportunity to dissect and plan each room—assigning measurements for furniture, determine the placement of tiles and specific furniture, detail the organization of interior designing. We are enthusiastic about this stage in our construction because once this is finalized with the construction workers, the execution will be propelled in a timely manner.
The man you see on your right, top row, is Mani. Mani is our watchman. For the last 22 months, he has faithfully watched over the day/night construction work of the Training Centre. God has a unique way of connecting time and places, and people. Mani was a familiar face in the childhood of Pastor Vincent. At the age of 8, Pastor Vincent was growing up in the streets of Batticaloa, learning how to ride his bike. In that timespan, Mani was the friendly neighborhood watchman. Almost, 45 years later, the two have reunited. It was not a pre-planned moment, but a moment of God’s sprinkle of familial love to place them at crossroads again. It was a joyous moment for our Pastor to learn that this was the same man that watched a little boy grow up, to now watching over the massive vision of God placed in that boy’s heart. God has a way of pulling things together.
My eyes were tearing when I saw this sweet, old man, open the gates for us to enter the Centre. Maybe you’re reading this, and you might question the relevancy. But, when I saw his smile, his passion about the honor of guarding the Centre, his excitement to see young people enter those gates, his dream of living there—I was touched.
All I could think of was the number of young people who will find a father in him or the young people he might find sons and daughters in. This is another aspect of the Training Centre– a place of love and family. A place where the love and unity of the Holy Spirit will greet people even right at the gates. This is what Blessing Hands Mission stands for – a home for the young and the old, for the preacher and for the cook, for the son and for the daughter.
We cannot wait to update you on more of the work that goes on in the coming days. We want to share portfolios on the young people we have crossed paths with and are excited to be a part of the Training Centre. God is moving, God is choosing, God is electing, God is connecting.
Sincerely, Blessing Hands Mission Team