June 05, 2023
“Thank you, thank you for the great spiritual impact you’ve had on our community, in our region and in fact, on our family as well.”
A pastor spontaneously stood during a Pastors’ Appreciation Dinner at the Eastern State (NSW) Gideon Convention to take the microphone and give heartfelt encouragement and thanks to The Gideons. Two years of preparation in church and pastor relations were reflected in the God-glorifying outcomes shared during the pastors’ appreciation event.
The Snowy Mountains is a vast area of international mission opportunity – 3 million visitors per year and over 10,000 accommodation rooms. Yet seasonal factors and the private ownership structure, with agent brokers acting as intermediaries for accommodation owners, makes it a challenging area for Gideon work.
The former Cooma and Bega Gideon camps (local groups) closed over 20 years ago, with Canberra South camp taking responsibility for this territory. They joined with Canberra North camp in preparing for the comprehensive Snowy Blitz, to cover every area from Bombala to Khancoban and beyond. Over 300 individual properties were contacted and visited.
We are so thankful to the 36 Gideon members from across Eastern State who became nine Blitz teams. What a great time of ministry it was. Praise the Lord for the many testimonies received from individual personal witnessing and incidental contacts as over 2000 Scriptures were distributed in accommodation, aged care facilities, hospitals, medical and allied health facilities. All schools permitted presentations to students during the Blitz week – some, such as Bombala High, were open to us for the first time in many years. The child of the pastor mentioned earlier had received her own Gideon Testament that week. Prayer walks were also held in the Cooma and Jindabyne communities.
Church presentations on the Sunday shared the outcomes and testimonies of the Snowy Blitz with the Christian community of the area, and identified numerous prospective members who will be followed up as we seek to re-establish a Gideon camp in this area.
However, there’s still work to be done – there are still great opportunities and needs in the Snowy Mountains region and in our own backyards.