The Cape Times GEORGE, SOUTH AFRICA The Laughrens, Pete, Fran & Denzil Winter 2013 -- Volume 23, No. 4 A Letter from Mark Tuttle, Forwarding Agent for Pete and FranDear Friends and Supporters, decision to reallocate their mission funds in 2010. The ability As many of you know by now, Pete, Fran and Denzil to manage through this until they could get back to the stateshave made the decision to return from South Africa and begin is both a testament to Pete and Fran’s frugal nature and abilitya new ministry here in the U.S. I personally have served on to manage the financial aspects of the ministry as well as yourmany mission related ministries and have seen how many loyal support.different missions are run both financially and spiritually. I can I want to personally thank you for making my job astell you with a high level of confidence that rarely do you see forwarding agent so easy over the years. Not having to worrya mission run with more integrity from a financial and spiritual about where Pete & Fran’s next paycheck will come from hasperspective. been a blessing to both Pete & Fran as well as myself. Please The level of trust Pete & Fran gained from the leaders consider this one time special gift and let’s work together tothey trained and worked with in South Africa is a testament help Pete & Fran finish well!to their own relationship with Jesus and the gifts and talentsGod provided them. From a financial perspective, and as a All for Jesus,finance guy myself, I can tell you the records Pete kept wereamazing for a non-accountant. You have supported a mostworthy ministry. Mark Mark Tuttle One thing that we as a family discuss with our kids Forwarding Agent, Outreach Internationaland now even with our parents is finishing well. Pete & 4325 Bluff Pointe, Clarkston, MI 48348Fran established and ran the race very well because of your 248-978-6229prayerful financial support. I would now ask that we help themfinish this first phase of their ministry here on earth just as well. Pete recently sent an email requesting help throughMay 2013 as they establish themselves here in the U.S. But Furlough Travels 2012what he didn’t tell you is that most of their belongings are still Greetings from Hampton, Ga. When we arrived in thein South Africa. It has been their plan all along to get settled U.S. to start our furlough in February of 2012, we then wrotesomewhere and then have their belongings shipped to the that we would be located in Georgia and then travel from ourU.S. They have settled near Hampton, Ga and now need to base there. That is what has happened and since that timeget their household goods sent to them. In South Africa, before we have been on the road to our supporting churches andthey left, they sold and/or gave away all but three pieces of individuals. We are very thankful for safe travel and for alltheir furniture but have other personal items to ship as well. of you that we have seen in our travels. The following is a Those of you who have moved before know that moving recollection of where we have been.household goods cross-country is not cheap. Pete and Fran In March of last year, after visiting Fran’s folks in Missourineed to get theirs across an ocean. Based on prior experience, after our arrival stateside, we spoke at Ferguson Christianwe believe this will cost approximately $10,000. We ask that Church in Ferguson Missouri. Stacy Garner, who led manyyou consider a one time special gift to help Pete and Fran internships to South Africa, is the preacher there and it wascover the cost of this move. good to be with him and his family again. We also saw Kevin As it always seems in ministry, funds are tight and Pete and Debbie Leahy on that trip and are thankful for the time withand Fran do not have the funds to move their belongings them. Soon after that, I spoke at North Boulevard Christianthemselves. In fact, over the past few years Pete & Fran Church in Amory, Mississippi, and shared a Wednesdayhave had to skip a paycheck or parts thereof periodically evening with them.due to a lack of funds. The reason for funds becoming so Denzil and I went to Johnson City, Tennessee, in June andtight was primarily a result of one of the supporting churches helped with the Vacation Bible School at Lone Oak Christian
church. We also spoke at Dewey Christian Church in Mountain City,Tennessee, after visiting with friends in Boone, N.C. Denzil stayed inJonesborough, Tennessee, for two more weeks as I came back to Georgiabefore traveling to Missouri to pick up Fran who had been tending to herfolks after her father’s heart surgery (see report of family later in this letter).After picking her up, we drove to Blacklick, Ohio, outside of Columbusand spoke at Eastpointe Christian Church for their morning services. Leaving there, we stopped and saw friends in Parkersburg, WestVirginia, on our way to another Vacation Bible School in Jonesborough,Tennessee. We spent a week there and had a good time with old friendsas this is the church where we worked before we sent to South Africa in1985. The next week saw us participating in a Vacation Bible School inTucker, Georgia. After three days at home, we then left on our longest Thank you to all of you from Berea Christiantrip of the year and headed north to Pennsylvania, Canada and New York.The first Sunday of that trip saw us at Derr’s Christian Church in Derrs, Church and McDonough Christian Church whoPa. We left there and spent the next two weeks in Ottawa, Montreal, and helped us move our stateside belongings intoother parts of Quebec visiting relatives before heading back to Painted our house in Hampton, Georgia to begin ourPost, New York, where we spent the weekend with Twin Tiers Christian furlough.Church. We then went back to Toronto, and after spending a few daysthere visiting more relatives, we went to the Detroit area to spend timewith our forwarding agents, Mark and Annette Tuttle. They have beensuch an important part of the work in South Africa, and we could neversay thank-you enough to them for all of their contributions. It was goodto see them for an extended period of time in our travels. After leaving the Tuttles, we spent two nights outside Chicago withmore cousins and got a great tour of the big city. At the end of that week,we went to southern Illinois and spoke at West Long Prairie Christianchurch just outside Mt Vernon. Our final part of the trip was to headback to Georgia after covering 4000 miles over five weeks. It was goodto report to many places and see so many people who care about thework in South Africa. Niagara Falls is always great to see. After being home for two weeks, we then headed west to Texas.We visited long time college friends, Brian and Twila Bierman in theHouston area for the weekend. Leaving there on Monday, we went northto the Dallas/Fort Worth area and spent time with our sister in law, TeriHamilton, before going to Longview Texas for the weekend. It was goodto spend time with the Bledsoe family who have been a “second” familyfor Fran since her high school days in Bedford, Texas. We arrived backin Georgia on the 25th of September, two weeks after we left. The next day I flew to California and spent the next five nights inUplands with Jeff and Robin Vines. Leaving there I flew north to GrassValley to spend a week with my mother, Flo Blackmarr, and my sister, LisaAndrews, and her family. As usual, it is always good to be with family. After arriving back in Georgia, we were here for 10 days beforegoing back to Tennessee to speak at Westside in Jonesborough. Wewere scheduled for the next weekend at Lone Oak Christian Church It was good to visit with cousins,for their faith promise and between times we spent time with friends in Kimba MacLean . . .Mountain City and Boone N.C. We really must thank the Edmistens inJonesborough and Effie Giles in Johnson City for accommodations in . . . and Blair Laughren whileboth places. After the weekend at Lone Oak, we took Denzil by Johnson in Ontario in AugustUniversity in Knoxville so that he could see the school that he wants toattend when he goes to college. After all, it was a great place to getFran and I together, and he found the place as beautiful as we did manyyears ago. Five days after we arrived back in Georgia, we got word that weneeded to be in Missouri to help with Fran’s folks and we spent threeweeks of November there. At the end of November, we drove to St. Louiswhere Fran and Denzil flew to Dallas and took care of our sister in lawTeri’s grandfather for two weeks. I spoke at Ferguson Christian Churchthat Sunday and after spending a night in Mt. Vernon, Illinois, on the wayhome, I arrived back in Georgia. The first Sunday of December saw me speaking in Newnan,Georgia, at First Christian Church. Six days later, I drove to Orlando and2
In our travels we got to see . . . San Francisco . . . the moon rise over the Bay Bridge in San Francisco . . . and the Chicago shoreline.In our travels we were able to witness “the chang-ing of the guard” at the Canadian parliament.met Fran and Denzil who flew from Dallas and we spent thenext six days at Disney World compliments of the Daughertyfamily from McDonough Christian Church. (It was a greatholiday there, and Andy and Terri, we thank-you so much forthe accommodations!!). Our last trip of the year took place two days after we got parents who live in California and Missouri. We felt like weback from Orlando. We flew to California to spend Christmas were needed stateside . It seemed like a good time to leavewith family, and we were there for 11 nights. One of the the South Africa work in the hands of the South Africa people.highlights of the trip was a day trip to San Francisco to see They are carrying on well. We miss them dearly, but life goesthe city and we truly enjoyed the day. Thanks, Mark and Lisa, on. This transition has been difficult, but with God’s help wefor that wonderful day. will carry on. We are looking for work in the Atlanta area, but As you can see, furlough travels take us a lot of places nothing has materialized yet. Please pray for us as we pursueand cover a lot of miles. But with supporting churches far and this new chapter in our lives. It has been challenging, but wewide, it takes a lot of time. It was truly a pleasure to visit with know that the Lord will take care of us in His time.everyone, everywhere we went. Our traveling for long tripsended on the 28th of December, but we are still visiting andspeaking locally, trying to see everyone who has supported thework in South Africa for many, many years. We thank-you foryour hospitality wherever we were. It has been a great year Report on Parentsreporting on the work of 27 years, and we are thankful for your In our travels, many of you have asked us about ourpartnership in it. parents. (This is Fran writing): A week after we got moved into our house in Hampton Ga., my Dad, Al Hamilton, had to haveFuture Plans emergency heart surgery for a prolapsed valve. So while my sister and her husband, Sonja and Dale Hawkins, were at We have been telling supporters and supporting churches the hospital in Columbia, Missouri, with dad, I stayed with myof our plans in person as we travel, but in case you have not mom, Annette, from April to July 2012. To me it was obviousheard, we are not returning to South Africa. We made the that we arrived stateside just in time! Dad has recovered welldecision before we left South Africa for several reasons. First from the surgery, but he has extensive lung damage and willof all, Denzil is getting ready for college, and we have witnessed be on oxygen and Prednisone (steroid) for a very long timefirst hand the problems with children being sent stateside from to come, if not for good.the field by themselves. We have seen fellow missionaries My mother, Annette Hamilton, has also had a difficultsend their children stateside and sometimes things did not turn time. Due to her breaking her back twice in the last couple ofout well. We only have one son and did not want to have the years, and vertigo, she has now come to the point where shechance to make that mistake. needs full time care. The other reason for our not returning is the frailty of our In December of 2012 Dad and Mom decided to move into 3
Mission Services Non Profit Org. Outreach 2004 E. Magnolia Ave. U.S. Postage Paid Knoxville, TN Knoxville, TN 37917 Permit #374 International Return Service Requested Addresses: Pete & Fran Laughren Phone: (678) 818-8106 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Forwarding Agents: Mark & Annette Tuttle 4325 Bluff Pointe Clarkston, MI 48348 Phone: (248) 978-6229a very nice assisted living facility in Shelbina,MO. The facility is close enough to Sonja and PrayersDale that they can check on them daily. Two * Please pray for the Christians in South Africa who are living in everweeks after moving into the facility, Mom fell increasing difficulties.again and broke her hip. She is recovering well * Please pray for our job situation and that God would use us where He seesafter a partial hip replacement. They both need fit.to have constant care/help. While we wouldlike to be the caregivers, it is not practical or * Please continue to pray for our parents in their situations.doable for any of us girls (daughters) on a fulltime basis. Mom and Dad are very comfortableand happy at the assisted living facility, and it Praisesworks for all of us. * We are very thankful for God’s provision during our furlough year of 2012. Pete’s * Mark and Annette have been great forwarding agents and we are thankfulMom (Flo for their service to the work in South Africa.Blackmarr) is * Denzil is doing great in school and should gradute in June.in an assistedliving facility in * We are very thankful for all of the support that has sustained us in thisGrass Valley transition. You will never know how much we appreciate it. Thanks!California. * Thanks must go to all of the people who have accommodated us as weAlthough have traveled this year. We really appreciate your kindness.Alzheimer’s isprogressing,physically Etc.she is doing * We are thankful for the contributions towards getting our belongings shippedwell and she stateside, but we are still about $6,000 short of getting it paid and shipped.is being wellc a r e d f o r. * Denzil now has part time employment and is doing well. He works forLisa, Pete’s Pete’s Mom, Flo Blackmarr, “Panda Express.” He also has his driver’s license. (Yikes!)sister lives is doing well in California * The churches in South Africa are continuing the Vacation Bible School inw i t h i n 1 0 under the watchful eye of Graaff-Reinet and for that we are very thankful.m i l e s a n d Lisa. Thanks, Lisa, for all • We are still available to come and speak and report on the work in Southv i s i t s w i t h that you do. Africa should you so desire. We would love to come and share what theher often and Lord has done in that part of the world. Let us know.takes great care of her in her situation. OverallFlo is doing well and we are very thankful that • We are sorry that it has been a year since our last newsletter from Missionshe is being very well looked after. Services, but finances have not permitted us to publish one until now. We For both sides of the family, Pete and I try appreciate you understanding. Thanks!to see them as often as we can, and we talk • We are settled in Hampton, GA, and our address here is: P.O. Box 206,to them frequently. We are thankful that both Hampton, GA 30228. Our telephone numbers are: 770-946-3033 andsides of the family are being well looked after. 678-818-8006.Please remember them all in your prayers. Thanks for everything!