BIMI

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Volume 12, Issue 1 SPRING 2012 FRUIT THAT REMAINS by Jeff Alverson One of the great joys of ministry is to see others come out of your ministry and go on in the Lord’s service. Jesus called it fruit that remains in John 15:16 when He said, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain.” What a joy to be able to preach in the pulpits of my “preacher boys” who were saved and called to preach under my ministry! This is especially a blessing when it is in your own family. My daughter surrendered her life to Christ as a young teenager and promised God she would marry a preacher. She kept herself pure, waited and God did, indeed, give her a preacher husband, who is now pastoring a church in Louisville, Kentucky. My son surrendered to preach in November 2010. He is preaching his first missions conference this month. What a blessed joy it is for me to hear him preach the Word of God! In our Military Ministry here at BIMI, we have several “father/son or daughter” combinations serving in different parts of the world. Gary and Karen Craft are serving in Germany. Karen’s father and mother, the Van Dynes, are serving as fill-ins. Rusty and Karen Pilalas are in Heidelberg, Germany. Jessie Pilalas is on deputation raising support to go to Japan. His wife, Lynne, is the daughter of Ed and Edelyne Navato serving the Yokosuka Baptist Church in Japan. Tom and Dottie Lancaster have pastored the Rhein River Baptist Church in Mannheim, Germany, for almost 20 years. Their son, Mark, and his wife, Julie, recently started a new church in Wiesbaden, Germany. I have asked them to write brief articles about their ministries. I hope you will enjoy and pray for them. LANCASTER FAMILIES IN GERMANY Dr. James Kennard, Director Dr. Jeff Alverson, Assistant Director Al Sligh, Assistant Editor I became a Christian in 1963 while serving in the United States Marine Corp. Dottie and I had just married and therefore, all of our married life we have had a love for the military. We have been in Germany serving the Lord and the U.S. military through Rhein River Baptist Church for the last twenty years. Before coming to Germany, I had started and pastored a church in South Carolina for nearly ten years and then started and pastored a church in Memphis, Tennessee, for nearly twelve years. We began a very fruitful outreach for the military at the church in Memphis and really began to develop a burden for reaching the military. We saw many marines and sailors Dottie and Tom Lancaster saved and several surrendered to full-time Christian service. But in 1991, as a result of a phone call from our dear friend, Brother Jeff Alverson, God presented us with the need and the opportunity to take the Gospel to our troops stationed in the Mannheim, Germany, area. We did not realize when we came to Germany what a spiritual gold mine this ministry would be. We have seen many hundreds of soldiers and their families saved in these twenty years and numbers of people follow the Lord in full-time Christian service as pastors, missionaries and Christian educators. God has truly poured out His blessings upon us—more than we could have ever imagined. But one of our greatest blessings has been to see our son, Mark, and daughter, Dawn, and their families also serving the Lord. And it is of particular blessing to Dottie and me to see our son, Mark, and his family serving the Lord in military missions here in Germany. Mark pastors a military church in Wiesbaden, Germany, that has been birthed out of Rhein River Baptist Church. From all indications it appears that Mark and Julie have the same great, effectual open door that Dottie and I have enjoyed for these many years. What a blessing to serve God and those who serve our country!