April 20, 2010
Dear family and friends,
We hope that your Easter was a time filled with blessings and hope of New Life in Christ. We were able to able to take part in a homeschooler’s retreat for the weekend. It was a wonderful time of spending time with God, with family, and with other homeschooling families. Most of these families are in Okinawa because of the military. We could all encourage and help one another despite some families that had one parent deployed.
Well, our big news is that after 9 years in Japan, we have made the very difficult decision to relocate. Okinawa has been our home for the past 7 years and many major events occurred here:
- The birth of both of our daughters (Emi, now 5, and Mika, now 3).
- The salvation of both Debe’s mom and sister.
- We assisted with 2 new church plants that are now healthy self sufficient churches.
- We have met too many to count wonderful Christians – both Japanese and foreigners.
So you can see why it was such a difficult decision to leave here. We are really going to miss the many friends and family we have made here. At the same time we are excited about the new opportunities that God has given us in… Portugal! If you are surprised, so were we…
We have really been seeking God’s leading lately as we have desired to focus on ministry full time. While God had provided for our needs through support and a teaching job, we really felt led to do more ministry. We tried a few “doors” here in Japan as well as South Korea and Taiwan, but those doors remained closed. We figured we were to stay in Okinawa—at least for the time being.
Isn’t it true that God often acts or speaks when you are not expecting it? A church in Portugal was looking for a missionary couple that could come and minister. They felt we were what they were looking for and asked us to pray about coming. As we prayed and communicated with Portugal, it became clear to both us and the church there that we were being led to go.
As we started researching about Portugal, we were surprised to learn that less than 2% of the Portuguese people consider themselves “Evangelical Christians.”
We will be working with the International Christian Church in the city of Cascais, just west of Lisbon.
This church ministers in three important areas:
1. To English speakers living in the Cascais area of Portugal through church services in English.
There is also a service in Portuguese on Sunday afternoons.
2. To English speaking students through the International Christian School of Cascais, which is held in the church building.
3. To the incarcerated through Prison Ministry.
Our ministry will be primarily in the school; Debe will be teaching 1st and 2nd grade, while Dan will teach the 7th and 8th grade students. We will also be involved with church ministry; possibly with the youth.
We plan on leaving Okinawa for Portugal this July, in preparation for school on September 1st.
As we begin this new adventure—this new ministry in Portugal, would you please join with us in praying:
- For our Visas to be approved in a timely manner; they have been quite strict recently in Europe regarding missionary visas.
- For the International Christian Church of Cascais, where we will be ministering. Pray that we will help to shine the true light of Jesus into the empty hearts there.
- For the International Christian School of Cascais, a ministry of the church. Although a Christian school, most of the students are not Christian.
- For our financial support; in addition to a stipend, we depend on support for expenses. We are praying that we will reach 100%; we are currently at 86%.
- For several "one-time" support gifts to assist with relocation and set-up fees to get to Portugal.
Incidentally, we have joined with a different Mission Agency, RCE International
(http://www.rce-international.org/), so support should be sent to a new address:
Checks should now be sent to:
PO Box 4528
Wheaton, IL 60189
Please note: checks need to be made out to “RCE International” to receive a tax deductable receipt. Please do not write our name, but write “#1907”, which is our account #.
Thank you for your support over the years and as we step out in faith in this new venture.
May God richly bless you,
Dan & Debe Pallmann (and Emi & Mika)
School/Church Website: http://www.icsc.pt/