View this email in your browser

4th Quarter, 2020



To Encourage
To Tie Us Together
To Give Ideas
To Inspire Mission
Hello Native Friends & Friends of Natives!

I am so glad to be in touch with you again. I hope you are well. I pray the following stories will inspire you.

A Confession

Chris Koonooka, our church leader in Gambel on St. Lawrence Island, told me this story. A couple, from the village got Covid while in Anchorage. They quarantined, but not the 2 full weeks. When they came back to Gambel, 19 people, out of a population of 700 got the virus, including Chris, his wife, daughter, and sister.

I responded with, “That’s so awful and selfish that they broke the quarantine and infected so many. So sorry you all are so sick, yet thankful you are progressing each day! I am praying today for the island.”

Here is the note Chris sent back. “In the old Eskimo ways and in the Bible, we’re told not to blame anyone. God our Creator had a reason that we too get the virus; He showed us that He will never leave us nor forsake us. Through the grace of the Almighty God, we have gone through the toughest part…Yes, with much prayers for all the others on the island that got it.”

Boom! I became immediately repentant. “You are right, Chris. I take back even an ounce of blame. No time for that, but to focus on others, which you do well by the way!”

Isn’t it true, friends, that Jesus took our blame, our sin, and our sicknesses upon Himself, giving us healing instead?  John 3:17, Isaiah 53:5. Thank you, Chris.

When There is Loss

About six years ago, our Native friends experienced a horrific situation, here on the Yakama Reservation. A trailer caught fire in the middle of the night and burned to the ground. Tragically, our friends’ daughter, her husband, and their toddler died. Their other grandson, age five, was sleeping in their (the grandparents’) house and they are now raising him. 

Just a month ago, their second daughter and a nephew, with alcohol on their breath, drove through a stop sign, crashed into a fuel truck, and were consumed by fire. They were beautiful young adults, 24 years of age, and had come to the All Nations Center for day camps, Saturday night game nights, and worked for Adventists in their business. Their daughter had a charming 10-month-old girl who is now being raised by our friends. Heart wrenching.

Members took food over to the family and went to the graveside service. Others visited later in the three homes of relatives. A polished stone was given to each cousin of these young people; delphinium plants in lavender blooms were purchased which the grieving family planted in memory and tribute for the youth.

Jesus carries them on His heart today. “Thank you, Lord, for opportunities to comfort and give hope in stunning situations; for being with those who sorrow all around the Northwest and for coming soon to usher in a new day.”

Ministry to Young People

Here are two resources you will be glad to have for your ministry to children and youth: 
Jesus 101 has just launched a new exciting resource for children! features animated videos to help kids discover Jesus in the Bible, a valuable resource for churches, schools, and families. Each 90 second video tells Bible stories in a fun and instructive manner and has a coordinating coloring page that kids can download to color at home.
Listen to the new station on the internet that offers 24-hour Christian programming,   When you come to the site, push the tab, listen to,’ Programs include ‘Your Story Hour,’ ‘Discovery Mountain,’ and ‘Maranatha Praise! Company.’ 

A High Award

I was privileged, in August, to meet Monte Church and Carlos Pardeiro in the Wallowa Mountains for the filming of the story of Chief Joseph. This will be #12 in the New Life Video Project. I found there is a lot of work in preparing for ‘a shoot’ as well as for the shoot itself. Writing the script, putting it into short sequences, collaborating with the producer; then the shoot, in the perfect location, with the right lighting, waiting for trucks or people to go by, getting me educated on holding the light reflecting screen, doing reruns of a scene; then the whole process of editing, which I haven’t seen yet.
All this is to say two things: (1) people were interested in what we were doing and gave us opportunity to share; (2) I experienced joy in seeing excellence. We have a beautiful message couched in a beautiful film scene in Native Country! Amen, thank You Jesus!

A couple of months ago, producer Carlos Pardeiro and story teller Monte Church, submitted a Native New Life video which won the Telly Award, a secular recognition, for excellence! Out of 20,000 entries! The Telly is the highest award in the filming industry.
This is not the first award. The following picture shows some 30+ awards throughout the years for excellence in media and production.
Carlos explains: “The two on the left are Telly Awards, the other one in front of me is an Aurora Award and next to it, on the right, is another Telly. Then comes the Angel Award followed by the crystal square which is a Videographer Award. We also have received four EMMY nominations from NATAS, National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. But beyond any of these recognitions by the industry, we are most proud of ‘The Trophies’ - the precious souls that have come to know the saving grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus!”

Plummer, ID Update

Donations came into our office recently to create an outdoor sign for the new church on the Coeur d’Alene Reservation. The letters are raised, or punched out, to give a 3 dimensional look. Only the letters light up at night.

According to builder Marvin Rogers, only the following items need to be put in place and the building is finished: tile/sink/toilet and shower inside, and a propane tank installed on the outside.  If you know of anyone who might donate some expertise with these, let Marvin know at 208-929-2160.

American Indian & Alaska Native Living

You may be wondering why you haven’t received spring and fall boxes of the healthy lifestyle magazine, American Indian Living. The publishers have decided not to print it, but will release it digitally where it can be read online:   The new name is, American Indian and Alaskan Native Living.

Joys On St. Lawrence Island!

In mid-March, Arctic Mission Adventure volunteer Petu "Chris" Koonooka, elder of the Gambell Seventh-day Adventist Church, started Bible studies with Ina Koonooka, 19, and Ila James, 17. Fear of the COVID-19 pandemic inspired them to study in preparation to be ready for Christ’s return.

Each evening, the four would review two Native New Day lessons in addition to regular Tuesday and Saturday evening meetings. The small group continued to meet during the pandemic. Some Sabbath services would be just have three in attendance because folks were remaining indoors. 

Solomon Koonooka, 23, joined in the studies and also used the Native New Day lessons. As they neared the end of the series, Ina and Ila were convicted by the Holy Spirit and chose to be baptized. Chris reviewed the 28 Fundamental Beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church with Ina and Ila, who were anxious for baptism, and a request was made for the pastor to come to Gambell. However, due to regional travel restrictions resulting from the coronavirus, it was not possible. Continue Reading...
Please send us news from your area to share in next quarter's newsletter!
You may also send your donations to:     
Native Ministries NW     
PO Box 5709 N. 20th   
Ridgefield, WA  98642

 Steve Huey                                Monte Church                         Marella Rudebaugh     
   Director                                 Emeritus Director                  Administrative Assistant
Copyright © 2020 North Pacific Union Conference, All rights reserved.

You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.