October 2010

Some of the kids from the Akha Youth Development Center.

Settling In...
We have been back in Chiang Rai four months now, and we’re finally feeling settled in. It’s hard to express how thankful we are to be returning to a community of close friends here, as well as to have the continued support of loved ones back at home. Upon returning, we were unsure of the responses we would receive coming back without Olive, but we’ve been grateful for the kindness people have shown to us. It has also created a space where people seem more comfortable sharing their own stories of grief and loss—stories they had never shared with us before. We are both continuing with Thai language study, as well as starting to study Akha. Beyond this, Rusty has been focusing his energy on continuing to develop, “The House of Weaving Dreams” project in Chiang Rai. He has been helping 25 students find jobs and internships in town, brainstorming small business ventures, and maintaining the postcard business that he started last year with the kids. He has also recently started teaching English three mornings a week at a Thai government school. I have been splitting my time between volunteering at a local government clinic, teaching English to the foundation staff, and continuing to run the AYDC (Akha Youth Development Center) child sponsorship program. We are getting closer to C h r i s t m a s wh i ch w i l l m e a n traveling to 13 different Akha villages for Christmas services and mobile clinics, as well as eating more pork than you can wrap your mind around. We covet your prayers as we make decisions regarding our time commitment here, as well as for our marriage with all the changes we have been through over the last year.

-In July, Luka helped with the first ever digital recording of the bible in Akha. Many Akha in Southeast Asia are illiterate, so even though the bible has already been translated into their language, they cannot study the bible on their own, outside of church. This will be a tool to reach out to the Akha living in Thailand, Burma, Laos, and the 1.5 million unreached Akha living in China. -In October, Rusty attended “Timothy Leadership Training” through Christian Reformed World Missions in Cambodia with another Akha staff member from our foundation. They will also be attending another training in Burma 4-6 months from now, with hopes to eventually host the training here in Chiang Rai.

A Life Well Lived.
Luka’s father, Abo Tsa, passed away on October 26th. Over these past few months, it was beautiful to watch the way their family cared for him, and especially in his final days. Every time we visited the hospital, there was a family member massaging his legs, fanning him, or wiping the sweat off his forehead. The day before he died, Luka’s family took him back to the village to die in the comfort of his own home. His words became fewer and fewer, mostly asking God to please take him home to heaven, pleading for the suffering to be over. He said to Rusty the day he was leaving the hospital that he thinks he “will be able to hold Olive in heaven today.” Apee Pae (Luka's mother) sang songs in Akha while weeping; she was going to say good-bye to her best friend, her husband of 58 years. They married when she was 16 he was 19—two Akha orphans, migrating from Burma to


Thailand, became the first Akha Christians in Thailand. Through their conversion, we see the spread of Christianity among the Akha in Thailand. Every day over the last few weeks, as he felt death drawing nearer, his daughter asked him if he had seen heaven yet, and every day until the day he died, he disappointedly said no. In Abo Tsa's final hour, the reality of heaven came so near. He said he saw the hand of Jesus reaching out to him...then an angel. His breathing slowed, thunder crashed through the sky, rain started pouring, and his spirit left his body to join Jesus and Olive in heaven. A humble orphan from Burma, who strove to walk “the Jesus way," has now heard the words, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."

“If I find in myself a desire to which no experience can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” ~C.S. Lewis

Abo Tsa & Apee Pae

We are very grateful for your support. Thank-you for joining with us in our work here in Chiang Rai.

Our Contact Info% %


Support Info.
YWAM L.A. 11141 Osborne Street Lake View Terrace, CA 91342 *Make your check payable to YWAM L.A. Do not write our name on the check, but simply place a note in the envelope indicating that your gift is for us.

e-mail: rustylynette@mac.com blog: http://rustylynette.blogspot.com Snail Mail: Rusty and Lynette Polinder P.O. Box 66, A. Muang Chiang Rai 57000 Thailand

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