Marc Mailloux's Blog


May 2016
May 23, 2016, 5:51 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

“Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations…” Deut. 32:7

Dear friends,

It was stifling hot in Lomé, Togo, a small West African country (pop.5 million)  sandwiched between Ghana and Benin)  where I arrived on April 22 for the second part of a church history course we’d started last year and had to abandon at the 14th century for lack of time…

I stayed at the Wycliffe mission center again this year which is equipped with fans which do little more than agitate the humid air.  So even after the long flight (via N.Y. and Ghana), sleep eluded me, and I considered that insomnia might be God’s way of encouraging my otherwise tepid prayer life…

Fortunately, there was a weekend to recover before the start of the course at the ACDI (“Alliance Chrétienne pour le Développement Intérgral”) center on Monday with a group of 15 pastors who arrived mostly on motorbikes from various parts of the country.  These intrepid brothers slept on the hard tile floor on the balcony adjacent to the classroom as they do several times each year when they come to the capital for classes.  That’s motivation.

There’s an irony—not lost on these African students—about studying church history, with its early  center of action in western Europe where the Faith has all but disappeared in the 21st century.  The church was basically non-existent in sub-Saharan Africa until the 19th century and now the center of Christendom is probably closer to Nairobi than to London.  Go figure.

Still, Africans and others do well to learn from the 4th century Arian controversy with Athanasius’ heroic efforts to defend orthodoxy;  from the Pelagian heresy with its challenge to the quintessential doctrine of original sin; from the heroic efforts of the likes of Wycliffe, Hus and Tyandale to get the Bible into the hands of the people in their native language; from the struggles of Martin Luther and his rediscovery of the doctrines of grace leading to the Reformation;  and especially from the origin of so-called liberalism with its anti-supernatural presuppositions which disparage the verbal bridge across the chasm from the infinite God to finite man, then pretends to cross the gulf as if the bridge were still there! That’s more magic than theology. One can only pray that these lessons from the past might serve as a warning for our African brethren lest they repeat the same mistakes we’ve made in the West.

 

The way home from Togo included a two-hour stop in Niamey, Niger followed by a shivering  9 hour layover at the chilly CDG airport in Paris; then finally a 9.5 hour flight to Miami squeezed in between two “Sumo wrestlers” in a seat that would leave no extra room for an anorexic fashion model.  How I envy anyone who can sleep on a plane!

Back in S. Florida, we’re finishing-up the academic year with the Haitian Bible school and continuing our Sunday PM radio spots on the Haitian radio—a minimal effort yielding disproportionate returns in feedback from the listeners… Aline maintains that radio is the most cost-effective part of our ministry.  She’s probably right.

My wife’s unofficial counselling ministry continues to develop amongst her casual gym contacts usually leading to prolonged evangelistic meals chez Mailloux where the blood sugar runs high and the conversation runs deep… If we learned anything from Martin Luther (via Francis Schaeffer) it was never to underestimate the influence of gastronomy on the soul. How gracious of the Lord to allow us to combine the agreeable with the useful…

Our summer plans include a few sermons to prepare for our annual stint filling-in for a vacationing French pastor of the Eglise Réformée Evangélique of Anduze  (in the Languedoc region) which providentially allows us to interact with Aline’s family, our son Calix, and a host of friends and acquaintances including the small, mostly elderly group of believers in the church. Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, we’ll have numerous French copies of Dr. Kennedy’s apologetic volume “Pourquoi je crois” to distribute.   May they serve to strengthen the feeble churches—tiny oases in Europe’s spiritual desert!

Aline’s aging parents are ailing and we probably won’t see her dad again which matters not so long as all are present and accounted for around the table of the Lamb at the Celestial Feast (Rev.19:9). It’s our most pressing concern—indeed the only imperative—that those we love and those elect whom Providence puts on our path be there on the Great Day.

Marc+Aline

 

Praise: 1-for the completion of another academic year with the local Haitian Bible school.                                         2-F our continued health and the Lord’s provision for our ministry.                                                                           3-For the encouraging receptiveness of our African and Haitian students.

Supplication: 1- For continued health and provision for our work.                                                                               2-For the spiritual welfare of our entire family, especially our sons.

3-For a blessed ministry in France (June 25-July 26).

 

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