A letter from Debbie Chase on home assignment from Malawi
Warm greetings and blessings to all!
Love remains in my heart as I share with you the surprising and sad news that I will not be returning to Malawi when I complete my Interpretation Assignment at the end of August. The reason for this is unclear. Nonetheless, it is the decision of the host church here in Malawi. However, what is important is not my presence but an enduring partnership with our sisters and brothers here in Malawi. We are the one body of Christ and we desperately need each other. Daily we see that our world is being torn apart by differences. But it is our differences that will guide us into fullness of life if we remain united.
My friends, I love the people of Malawi, and I have been greatly blessed by the gift and honor of serving closely with our sisters and brothers in Malawi these past 13 years. Teaching at the college has been enriching and fulfilling. The work of training ministers to lead and guide the people into the way that leads to abundant life is essential and never more so than now when the trend throughout the world is to be broken and divided.
My work in my current position continues through Interpretation Assignment and your ongoing encouragement and support are greatly appreciated. Our colleagues of PC(USA) World Mission at the Presbyterian Center in Louisville and in the field in Zambia and in Malawi, as always, accompany me. Your accompaniment is also needed and will be greatly appreciated. Just as you have shared this journey from the very beginning, may the journey continue in the same way as you join with us in prayer to discern God’s call for the future and to rededicate our lives (our time, talents and resources) to the way that makes for peace and life for all!
You are an important part of this ministry. Thank you from the bottom of my heart that your prayers and love and gifts flow forth abundantly through joy and sorrow, good times and challenging times. May it always be so! May this ministry continue through love that “bears all things, hopes all things, and endures all things”! “Love never ends!” (I Corinthians 13:7-8 NRSV).
Let us rejoice in the reality that God is truly with us to give us new life—abundant life—that will come only as we persevere in love and unity. For it is through unity that blessing is to be found (Psalm 133).
I remain with you in the one Spirit of our Lord as I have bidden farewell to friends in Malawi, shared the Christmas holiday with family in Wisconsin, and settled into my home base in Tulsa, Okla., ready to begin my time with all of you in the New Year. I look forward to being with you as I travel from state to state and church to church to share about Malawi, and I will keep you updated as plans for my future ministry unfold.
Grace and Peace,
The 2013 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer & Study, p. 117
Read more about Debbie Chase's ministry