Christian Mission to the Orient

P.O. Box 2363, Joplin, Mo 64803

March, 2015
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I want to share with you some exciting news from our students at Lanna Theological Center.  April has traditionally been the time for Summer Break here in SE Asia.    The Weather is hot and dry with temps exceeding 40 degrees (that's Celsius, about 104 F.)   


April is also the time for the biggest holiday in the region:   New Years!  In this part of the world, New Years is celebrated as the world's largest water fight.  Officially lasting 3-5 days, locally 

it stops everything for two weeks.   The Water festival was traditionally a gentle pouring of water onto the shoulder of someone else with a verbal blessing for a good new year.  


Thai New Year Celebration 

However, it has now become an excuse for a community wide drunk fest with  people throwing buckets of ice and water at whoever comes by.   It is a dangerous time for the youth of this region.  


In response, many Churches try to have youth camps during this week. It is an opportunity to get the youth away from the drinking and focused on spiritual growth. Last week, 3 students came to me about an idea for how to use their summer break.     All three students are from a neighboring location where the church is still persecuted.   Let me share each student's plan.  

Lert & Hin:  A Cross-Cultural Partnership



LTC Students Hin (L) & Lert
Lert is from the Kamu people group in a neighboring country. This group is in the midst of a phenomenal church planting movement.     Recently they have reached out to other language groups in the region.  One of those language groups are H'Mong villages.   As a result, there are two H'Mong students at LTC preparing for ministry.     Hin is one of those students from the  H'Mong outreach.    

 There are seven churches within Lert and Hin's  Network: Six H'Mong churches and the one Khmu church.    Five churches are under persecution and three of those are not allowed to hold any meetings.   Hin's village is one of the three that will not allow the Christians to meet openly and many of the adult Christians from Hin's village will take turns traveling to Lert's village to attend worship services.  The ONLY trained leader in the network is:  LTC Graduate Bao Jua. 


The Christians in these villages are a witness for Christ.  But, it is the Christian youth that really make this story unique.


Hin reported that the there are about 10 youth  who are so committed to Christ that they  refuse to be intimidated by the authorities. They openly meet for worship every Sunday in their home village.  The authorities simply do not know how to respond, so for now their decisions is "They're just kids.. what can it hurt if they hang out together....after all that is what teenagers do.".  


Hin said to me,   "In a few years these youth will be adults and if they remain faithful and excited in their faith, I believe a harvest will happen."


Lert and Hin want to hold a youth camp for the  churches within their Network.  They anticipate about 130 youth and adults will attend the camp.  They plan to have the camp at Lert's church.  Lert has been trying to get work as a day laborer on his free Saturdays to raise the funds for the camp.  He get paid a daily wage of $4 a day and there are only a few Saturdays he has free to work.  Lert and Hin estimate the cost for the week of camp to be about $300. 




LTC first year student Jam 


Jam is a freshman H'Mong student from another region of SE Asia known for its severe persecution of Christia ns. However, Jam said his village is currently experiencing a season of freedom. So, he wants to hold a camp for about 50 leaders from 4 different churches.

 None of these churches have ANY trained leadership.   LTC graduates have gone into the area and held training seminars for those with some level of education.    These local leaders are committed to shepherding the flock as best as they can. But they need more training, more teaching, more support.  


Jam is the first "Timothy" from this region to be sent to LTC for training.   And he is one committed young man!   His desire is for the churches in his area to become strong in their faith.   With just 2 semesters of Bible school under his belt , he wants to do something for his church network.   He is planning a 3 day conference and he will take what he learned at LTC and go teach these Christian leaders.


He anticipates the cost to be $300 to feed everyone for 3 full days.  


Jam teaching during Christmas break 

Lert, Hin, and Jam have no guarantee of receiving an financial support. Their attitude? "That's okay... we are still going to plan on being able to do something. We will use what funds we can save from working and we will teach!"


25,0000 Bricks for the walls....

Making adobe, the old fashioned way
For many summer break is....vacation. Lert, Hin, Jam, however, have planned to spend their summer break applying what they learned in the classroom at LTC to their home churches. We need to train more young people like these three young men and send them out to plant and lead in local congregations. That is why we have embarked on building a larger campus. So that we can train more students! 

Our first building (classroom) is underway. We have all the signatures from the city engineers and are waiting on the signature from the mayor.  In the meantime we have started making our adobe blocks for the walls. (We don't need permits to make blocks)  We need 25,000 blocks for this building.
2,000 blocks

Pray for our electrical situation.  Everything is in place to hook up the electricity.  Poles have been planted, 1,200 meter of heavy duty cable is in our storage, paperwork submitted. We now just wait for the Electrical Authority to come inspect and give us the construction meter.

Also be praying for the last $60,000 needed to complete this building.
Summer Travel Update
David & Sharon Filbeck

David and Sharon will be in the US in April and May. Their son Aaron, and  will be graduating from Central Christian College of the Bible, Moberly MO in May. David & Sharon must also pack up the house they have been renting & put all their belongings in storage. In between all that they will be visiting three churches & raising the last $60,000 for  the new classroom. They will return to Chiang Mai around May 18 to start the next trimester. Both will be teaching courses at Lanna Theological Center as well as overseeing the construction efforts.

Carmen Filbeck 




Carmen Filbeck will be in the US for the summer months (June and July). She is currently booking opportunities to visit with churches and supporters.  


She is also available for VBS and Camps. Schedule a day, weekend, or mission event with Carmen by contacting her at





Community of Blessing Update:  AUGUST 14-23, 2015
January 2015 COB Team

We have a few slots left for the Community of Blessing medical trip August 14-23, 2015. We would like to add at least one more person who has a background in dentistry and/or dental hygiene. BUT that is not a requirement. There is a service for you to do. For more information go to our WEBSITE.


We are grateful for your continued support in helping prepare Christian leaders in Southeast Asia.  You may click here for a Print version of this newsletter.   




The CMO Team 

David & Sharon Filbeck     (Email David and Sharon) 

Ken & Kathy Filbeck          (Email Ken and Kathy)

Carmen Filbeck                 (Email Carmen)