2010 Newsletter from Ron and Moya, Albany, Western Australia

Moya & I send loving greetings to each of you who will receive this report.  We pray that our Lord is prospering you all as you reach out with His love in your efforts to lead others to Christ.

It has been a long time since last we wrote, but you have not been out of our minds.  During the past 9-months I have struggled with some health problems and since entering into partial retirement and becoming, (what is referred to here in Australia, as an "Old-Age-Pensioner"),  the last few months have been as full in our Christian ministry, if not fuller than previous years.  As some of you are aware, the South Coast Church here in Albany is comprised of mainly senior Christians and a great many pastoral needs have arisen during the past six months that have taken up a lot of our time.

We, like most congregations here in Australia, are extremely short of able-bodied workers.  But with our Lord’s help, everything has been attended to and everyone cared for, as much as we are able.

REMOTE RURAL MISSION TRIP:  From August 9, through September 16, 2009, Moya & myself traveled almost 5,000 miles in our car and house-trailer for 37-days, as we visited with men and women living in remote areas of mid-west Western Australia.  These were people who had made contact with the South Coast Church through our Media Outreach which uses radio messages, our website www.discoveringabetterlife.org.au and various newspapers throughout the mid-west of Western Australia.

As we traveled, Moya & I were able to provide spiritual encouragement to numerous people and distributed many pieces of literature, as well as Biblical messages we have recorded on CD’s.  All in all, it was a most rewarding and encouraging time and we look forward to making a similar journey from the end of June through to mid August this year, if our Lord so wills.

Australia is an extremely agnostic, irreligious nation and our Evangelistic Media Outreach, , continues to play an increasingly important role in the mission field of the 21st Century.
By using the Internet, Website, and Radio we are able to communicate with people in many homes in Western Australia, as well as other places throughout the world and we are able to help meet their spiritual needs by referring them to Christians in their local church community.  Many people who are isolated geographically, economically, socially or physically find great comfort in the electronic media.  This applies equally to our fellow saints in Christ and to those who do not yet know Him.  


It is a sad fact, that most people in Australia have no genuine relationship with Jesus, our Lord, but the South Coast church is of the strong conviction that our Media Ministry must continue to be a high priority or the impact of the message of hope and salvation in Jesus will be lost to many people in our society (Romans 10:13-15).

VALUABLE ENCOURAGEMENT FROM THE MALAGA CHURCH:

The Malaga Church of Christ, which is located in the city of Perth, (250 miles north of Albany), have included the South Coast Church in their calendar for four visits this year.  Groups of  between 10-15 members, (accompanied by one or two of their Church elders), will travel down to Albany and stay 2-nights and 3-days over the weekends during March, May, August, and November.  On each of the Saturday’s they are here, we shall enjoy a devotional time together, along with a fellowship meal.  On each of the Sunday’s prior to their returning to Perth, their men will lead our morning worship service.  This past weekend, (March 6-7), we were privileged to have 14 brethren from Malaga visit and worship with us.  It was indeed a wonderful time of fellowship and mutual encouragement for us all.

We are most grateful to God for the encouragement we receive from our Malaga brethren on these very special occasions!   

MANY DEATHS: During the past six-months, Moya & myself have grieved the deaths and attended the funeral services of 12-friends and family members. I have personally conducted four of those funeral services.

DEATH of SAM SAMPSON:  In the early afternoon on February 4th, a true pioneer of our Lord’s Church here in Western Australia, our dearly loved brother-in-Christ, Samuel Arthur Sampson (known to many of you who will read this report), died peacefully and went home to be with his much-loved Saviour.  On Friday, February 13, I was privileged to conduct his funeral service, during which we celebrated his wonderful life.

Sam Sampson was the father of my late wife (Fay).  Therefore, he was my father-in-law, Grandpa to our four-children and Great-Grandpa to our 12-grandchildren.  He was also the beloved brother-in-Christ of Moya and myself, along with a multitude of brethren throughout this wonderful world.

Sam Sampson was 102 ½ -years-old when he died.  He had served his Lord faithfully, ever since he and his late wife Emma first put on Christ during a George Bailey Campaign at Embleton on September 26, 1966.   Since becoming a Christian, Sam has been such an inspiration to many brethren in his steadfast love for our Lord and His Church during the past forty-five years.

Following their baptism into Christ, Sam & Emma became a part of the nucleus of foundation members to begin the City Beach congregation.  In 1972 they moved from City Beach to become one of the families involved in the establishment of the Darling Range congregation.

In 1979 they moved to Albany & established the South Coast church of Christ in their home until the numbers became so great they couldn't all fit in their lounge-room, so a building was hired for worship services.  Sam was leading in all capacities, prayer, song leading, Sermons, Our Lord's Supper & any other need at this time.   For a shy farming gentleman this was a huge happening, it just goes to show how real the Lord became to Sam & Emma, they never looked back.

Prior to his baptism into Christ in 1966, Sam Sampson came from a Rural background and had limited education opportunities. Sam & Emma owned their own wheat and sheep farm at Beaufort River, 160-miles south of Perth.  They also operated their own Bulldozing business, clearing farming properties and building earth dams etc.  Everything Sam did he did well, even his dams were a work of art. Their bull-dozing work took them to various parts of Western Australia, living in their house-trailer & a big low loader to move the dozer.

When their days work was done, they took every opportunity to study the Bible with people, using the Jule L. Miller and Texas H. Stevens Visualized Bible Study Series. Which was outstanding, considering they were such shy folk... but as we know, with the Lord's help nothing is impossible!

Sam & Emma often travelled up North of Western Australia for the winters, when it was too wet to build dams.  Wherever they stayed in Trailer Parks, they took advantage of every opportunity to share their great love of the Lord and up until recent years, Sam served in the church's leadership in every capacity.

Sam was a strong gentle man, with a big smile, who was always willing to sit down & discuss spiritual things. He was a humble, warm, embracing and accepting man, who was ever ready to lend a helping hand to others and his home was always open to brethren and friends.  Sam made a difference in people's lives, as evidenced in a tribute from John Wood, which I have attached to this newsletter.

Very sadly, mid 1994, Sam’s beloved wife of 62-years died.    Throughout their married life Emma’s health was not strong.   In those last months when Emma could no longer be at home, Sam visited the nursing home she was living in every day.

August 2002, Sam Sampson, (at the age of 95), remarried to a lovely Christian sister, Irene and they enjoyed over 7-years together, prior to his death on February 4th.

When we stop to think about the fact that Sam Sampson was 59 years of age when he put on Christ in baptism and has since then been involved in the establishment and development of three different congregations of our Lord's church here in Western Australia, that truly is an encouragement to all of us who have been privileged to be associated with him.  Prior to his death at 102 ½ years-of-age, our dear brother Sam was the most senior of all New Testament Christians here in Western Australia, possibly Australia!  

Brethren it could be truthfully said of Sam Sampson, that he was a Farmer, Bull Dozer Driver -- who loved Jesus and became a faithful preacher of the gospel of Christ.  So, from one who planted grain and shepherded sheep on a farm, he became a planter of God's word and a shepherd of some of God's sheep and the lives of many people are spiritually richer because of the faithful service he rendered our Lord.  --  PRAISE GOD!

As we conclude our newsletter to some very special people in our lives, Moya & I want you to know we are so grateful to God for your love and prayers!

With much love,

Ron & Moya
Ephesians 3:20-21

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