With living in view of the One whose “eyes go to and fro throughout the earth to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him,” greetings again from the Cross Over Global crowd of caretakers for His kingdom come.
Since our last update of June 2015 that showed you the site of the new Ewaso Ngiro Worship Center / KCOM (Kenya Christian Outreach Ministries) Bible School, the pace has picked up considerably with $80k added to the project from one donor! With receiving a finishing cost estimate of $15-$20k to complete the work, COGO sent another $3,000 to close the gap further. For your optical perusing pleasure…
On a personal note to all of you who have wondered about our overseas travels this current year, we have been restrained by events occurring here on the home-front. With our fifth and final child departing the nest for marriage in June of 2014, we then experienced my mother’s departure to be with the Lord in March of this year following an illness that suddenly began in January. Since then, Elese and I have been assisting in the care of both my father, who is 89 years young, and my sister. With all grace abounding, we are all well.
After 30 years of pastoring and with no thought of returning to it, the Lord surprisingly made a clear path of leading and confirming for us to take on another church! A door of invitation opened to us through a gracious company of brethren in Painted Post, NY. With receiving this pastorate, we have been given ‘carte blanche’ freedom to carry on our mission work and also continue to preach out at churches upon request. We began in September with this precious group called, Twin Tiers Christian Church, where the manifest presence of the Lord had preceded our coming and thankfully persists. We are taking the low road to hold the Lord high, esteeming our weakness to be the very ground of His strength in our midst. There has been healing(s) and growth, but our vision for the house is focused simply on making and keeping it a place where He can come! All our resourcefulness cannot compare to the goods from His presence.
Our communication and view of the progress with the field in Ewaso Ngiro, Kenya have kept our juices stirred in anticipation of another ministry trip there in 2016. The open doors into Bulgaria and beyond await the nod of His will to be done. We look to take those steps, but one at a time, and by the voice behind us that says, “This is the way, walk ye in it.” Meanwhile, you are in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. We encourage you to His whereabouts with you since it is where His freedom (liberation) is found to be lived!
Yours in Christ Jesus, D & E
Greetings to all those whose grasp has not exceeded their reach. In cooperation with the rest of our Cross Over Outreach-ers, Elese and I thought to invite you to wet your whistle, especially if this past, long, cold winter has been a Valley of Dry Bones for you. Our spring having fully sprung into summer’s outset, we encourage you to take a moment to peruse these various testimonies as water for your dry ground.
With having purchased land a few years back to build a church/Bible school among the Maasai people of Ewaso Ngiro, Kenya, that fenced-in turf is now broken ground with walls going up. In addition, a long awaited well has just been drilled at more than 500’ deep. Plenty of water is the cheer! We are elated to our dear brother, Pastor Jackson Kenanda, who has been heading up this vision under the support and assistance of WOMF (World Outreach Ministry Foundation) and COGO. Our thanks go out to so many of you who continue to sow into this labor through prayer and giving. Above all, we give praise to God knowing that “…we are not sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God.” Behold what is marvelous in our eyes!
Aside from these encouraging pictures above, please double-click on the below link, then click “open” to hear the wonderful sound of water from this well. Along with this water being shared with the locals and their livestock, comes the gospel message of “living water” from our African brethren building to reach this community and far beyond.
Let There Be Water
Concerning the recent earthquakes in Nepal: A missionary friend of ours, Charles Sessoms, his wife, Yonhui, and daughter, Grace, are working alongside Christian nationals to bring relief to multitudes with food (primarily rice), medical supplies, tents, cooking supplies, Bibles, tracts, etc. Below are some pictures of the devastation and work going on north of the capital city, Kathmandu, in mountainous regions where communities have lost many lives and 80-90% of their housing.
We have known Charles since the 1980’s and by staying in touch with his ministry over the last couple years, we were blessed to send a quick contribution from COGO of $1500. Of course, their need remains great and your support is yet welcomed. Please make your checks out to COGO, writing “Nepal Relief” in the memo. Also, please keep in prayer this precious family and the many others who are carrying the testimony of the gospel to those affected by this calamity.
Finally, Elese and I would like to mention we have a ways to go before the Maasai people of Ewaso Ngiro, Kenya will be able to fully rejoice in the personal benefit of being trained at the Bible school. We still have a price tag of $10-15,000 to acquire a pump, generator, and tower with cistern for the well. No donation is too small - $10 will buy a bag of much-needed cement! Please, consider helping the cause by sending a gift either by check, or for your convenience, PayPal is on our website below. Be sure to memo your donation as M“Kenya Project.”
From the beginning of COGO in 2000, we remain true to our vision in assisting the vision of nationals with making certain 100% of monies given and earmarked for a particular project, go straight to that project. As always, we are available and more than glad to come to your church, home group, etc… to share our vision, ministry and heart for the Lord and His labor. Feel free to contact us through the below email address or phone # and especially take the time to check out our website where much more can be found. Until next time, stay tuned and we’ll keep you in the loop. Blessings from above…
Kept of Him,
David & Elese Cosgrove
Warm and heartfelt Christmas greetings to our Northern majority and Southern minority followers! Before snow flies again for most of us, my wife and I thought to twist your ear with an encapsulated version of our year’s worth of ground and airborne ministry ventures.
Aside from our weekly teaching ministry as “COGO” that meets in Big Flats, NY, Elese and I have had the privilege and joy of ministering out at some of our local churches in Elmira, NY. Both Faith Temple Community Church and Living Word Free Evangelical have been a great blessing to us. The ministries have allowed us to break bread with their saints time-and-time again while contributing to our overseas work. Christian Hope Center in Corning, NY who has supported our efforts in Kenya and Bulgaria for years continues to receive brethren we work with. Ron and Shirley DeVore of World Outreach Ministry Foundation based in Uganda, Africa were one of those ministries welcomed this year for the third time. Of course, we’d be totally remiss if we didn’t mention the gracious weekends spent at Agape Fellowship in Christ near Harrisburg, PA where pastor after pastor have welcomed us with open arms.
In April, Don Capwell from Fredericksburg, VA and I hooked up in Amsterdam going through to Bulgaria via Romania. Over our 10-day stay, we ministered nine times in four churches and were especially blessed to experience an extraordinary sense of the Lord’s presence in one church bordering on outright revival. This outbreak of God was due to a youth group of some 20+ young people who had been in daily fast and prayer for two months. They refused to break the fast when time had lapsed as they were seeing their own personal breakthroughs with God. What a challenge to us all!
July arrived with another COGO departure to Kenya. Our traveling comrades for years, Geoff and Tess Pollack, oversaw a team of six going through to Maasailand in Ewaso Ngiro, where property we purchased was fenced off for future construction of a church/Bible school. The team’s two-week stay was full with ministry from early morning till late night doing house-to-house visits, crusades, and revival meetings. Thirty-some people received Christ while others rededicated themselves to the Lord.
The Pollacks’ gracious overseeing of the team allowed Elese and me some travelling liberties. For the first time, we did ministry in and around Nairobi answering an invitation by Cornerstone Christian Church. Little did we know that this stay with Brother Joseph Mutua Muindi would put us on TBN-TV with an extensive interview and three half hour teaching sessions for his show Building for the Future. We later traveled 1 ½ hours to Maasailand South visiting various pastors with their churches, hearing incredible testimonies of their lives, ministries, and visions they have received from the Lord. All were quite the Book of Acts storylines.
We then joined the team in Ewaso Ngiro for a week before continuing onto Migori, Kenya. This was our first visit in seven years after finishing the MSOMI Training Center building, COGO’s first project, begun in 2000. It was wonderful to spend the week catching up with Bishop John and Pamela Okinda who rolled out the red carpet for our return. Unknowingly, we came at the time of their Holy Spirit “Fire Convention” which kept us busy ministering daily with profound testimonies.
Besides reconnecting with many of our Migori friends, our main focus was to view the MSOMI Training Center completed. The contributions of many of you built this extraordinary building that is in full use by the church and community. As a result, several other massive structures have been built on our original 2 ¼ acres: an orphanage/primary school for over 200 children, a private Christian Teachers College of 250 enrollees, the Migori Worship Center which seats 700, and a lecture hall with large bathroom facilities.
One of the great take-a-ways from our visit to Migori was realizing a labor when born of God is never in vain and the years will prove the long term and far reaching effect of seed sown in good soil. Many graduates from the Theological School introduced themselves to us telling the effect our work had upon their lives. Two local pastors testified that the sizable expansion of their ministries was directly related to words I had shared over their lives years ago. One is in the finishing stage of building a 1,200-seat cathedral. The other has gone from overseeing one church to multiple churches with more set to be opened. You can’t imagine the encouragement this was to Elese and me as we by faith continue on.
Above any of these accomplishments, those who know us know we seek the testimony of God’s beginning and finishing touch in each and every work. What is built of God in the hearts of men will remain when all else perishes… We continue to seek His will with further opportunities presenting themselves to minister in Turkey, Greece, Romania, and Pakistan. Consider being a part in our present labors in Bulgaria and Ewaso Ngiro, Kenya. Teams will be forming for this coming year 2015. Please remember us in your prayers and contributions for furthering the kingdom against the day of His coming. Blessings to you all from the abundant supply of His riches in glory!
In His Keeping,
David & Elese Cosgrove
After Lot was gone, the Lord said to Abram, “Look as far as you can see in every direction, for I am going to give it all to you and your descendants. And I am going to give you so many descendants that, like dust, they can’t be counted! Hike in all directions and explore the new possessions I am giving you” (Gen.13:14-17 Living Bible).
We all hike in the direction of our own dreams, passions, and realistic pursuits, but when we concede them to the Lord, our eyes can then be lifted up to what God has in view that far surpasses the frame of our thinking and strength to acquire them.
Alike many of you, my brethren, we have forsaken our own future in faith of the Lord’s fulfillments with our lives and have enjoyed the spread He has lifted our eyes to. We have hiked lands east to west and north to south so as to be a part of the Lord’s reclamation of the lost from the Fall. Of course, we are speaking of “descendants” or people and we continue to have doors opening to us to further the gospel in these places.
Pakistan is a new door of invitation that is being backed by the Lord’s confirmations for our going. In the meantime, we are coordinating with our brethren in Pakistan to make this leading a reality. The primary request on the ground there for now is to have Bibles in the Urdu language. Crusades being held by our brother Imran Fazal are bringing a harvest incurring this need. At $7 a Bible, consider giving a donation.
At this time, we are also making arrangements for a team to return to Ewaso Ngiro, Kenya in August. Some of the foremost brethren of our WOMF co-laborers (World Outreach Ministry Foundation) were in Ewaso Ngiro this February clearing the land survey and doing an investigation on drilling a bore hole for water. All this is in view of beginning the construction on the new church/Bible school. Elese and I will be ministering in Nairobi at the outset of this trip, then spending a week with the team in Ewaso Ngiro, and off to Uganda to join another team traveling into Burundi for crusades and teaching.
Concerning our work in Bulgaria, we are looking to move ahead with the second half of the communication vision Niki Markov has been carrying with setting up the country’s first Christian Radio Station. The building to house the station is already there, but needing a roof that is estimated at $8-$10,000. Don Capwell and I will be leaving April 10th till the 21st to collaborate on the future of that work while ministering from Palm Sunday through Easter Sunday.
Here at home, we continue to have fruitful COGO gatherings on Tuesday evenings at the Big Flats Community Center. On March 18th (this upcoming Tuesday), we have Brother Joseph Mutua Muindi ministering, accompanied by Brother Jake Luffy, a former pastor and teacher at Pinecrest Bible Training Center. Joseph has been a traveling companion with Jake ministering in many countries together for years. Jake first heard Joseph speak in 1992 at the Nairobi, Kenya Stadium alongside Paul Yonggi Cho from South Korea (pastor of the largest church in the world). Joseph is a Bishop over some 60+ churches in Kenya, Tanzania, and Congo. Many of these he has either pioneered or pastored. Elese and I were assured by Brother Jake that all attending will not be disappointed! You’ll not want to miss this meeting.
We encourage those of you who have received and been blessed by our updates, blogs, Facebook entries, etc., to pray about becoming seriously involved with us on some level of the Kingdom being furthered. We know each one has his or her place in the harvest and for those who have not found that place, or are in transition from one field to another, please consider COGO.
If any of you haven't checked out our blogs lately, we've had two new ones added. Use the below Tumblr address and you're there. Also, we've had a complete updated facelift on our Cross Over Global Outreach website that is worth seeing as well. That address is below too. Have at them.
David & Elese Cosgrove
Cross Over Global Outreach
We’re back and barely dustless, but restless for more of the same to come. Our team of seven that left Christmas Day for Ewaso Ngiro, Kenya is safely back on USA turf with the fresh excitement of what was accomplished and what is before us to further the kingdom in this remote area. Most of you are aware that we are ministering among the Maasai tribe of Kenya on the fringe of the Maasai Mara Game Reserve where it’s not an oddity to encounter wild animals almost anywhere near our neighborhood. We’re that close.
We ministered at a Maasai home group gathering where the hostess shared that a month or so before we arrived they had an elephant break into their compound to get water from their supply. Our cook, Ezekiel, left our living quarters one evening mentioning the need to get home soon because of the “chui” or the cheetah. This fastest animal on legs can reach a speed of 70-miles an hour which makes him a formidable predator you do not want to face, especially after dark. Ezekiel, carrying a hefty club with a metal ring on the end called a “rungu”, made off at dusk with our prayers following him home. Yes, he survived without incident. There are many other stories beyond belief, but the greatest marvel is that these people, the Maasai, who have remained largely opposed to and even unreached by the gospel in measure, are flocking to Christ in groves.
Geoff Pollack and I, who have been longtime mission partners, were taken by a couple of the African pastors on motorcycles (called boda-bodas) 1 ½ hours out into desolate, arid prairie lands to minister to a new church beginning among the Maasai. Stopping along the way to take a break at a waterhole, we had four Maasai cross an enormous range where they graze their livestock just to meet us. In short order, Geoff led two of them to the Lord. One of those who did not receive the Lord requested the pastors to come preach to his family on another day. This type of response is not unusual. Harvest is in the air there. And yes, we did finally reach the Maasai church that was just beginning, but not before preaching to another group that we were told was that church. Oops! That’s a first and wow, what an antsy crowd to minister to. Yup, there’s nothing like sharing the wrong message with the wrong crowd while expecting a right response. Welcome to the front! Regardless, Christ was preached!
|The wrong group
||the right group
The diversity of our team allowed us to divide and minister in several churches at a time, let alone neighborhoods, a medical center, and even one of the local schools. Coupled with our former trip in May of 2012, this longer trip has given us some serious in-roads to the people of the community at large (both urban and rural) where relationships are being established for the future work of the Lord here. Our team that had many day-to-day opportunities to minister in the neighborhoods of Ewaso Ngiro saw numerous people turn over their lives to the Lord Jesus with receiving the Holy Spirit. The testimonies were wonderfully heart-breaking at times. Given the quantity of those coming to the Lord, we encouraged Pastor Kenanda to utilize some of the funds we’ve set aside for the future church-Bible school, to build a larger temporary structure to house the many he cannot now fit in his present church building. Construction begins soon!
An error made on the original location of the land sold to Pastor Kenanda for the church-Bible school looked like a potential setback. However, after meeting with the land surveyor, the problem was rectified with the surveyor providing a new property closer to the main tarmac which offers better visibility and easier access for municipal power hook-ups. It’s great how a perceivable mistake can end up an inconceivable blessing when God is authorizing your labor!
As a final note, our team’s daily gathering for prayer at the 7am hour was an incredible feeding time in the Holy Spirit. The thoughts and words the team faithfully brought forth as they were quickened of God set the course for our needed perspective, pace, and peace in the work we had ahead. Our separate messages ministered in different meetings were amazingly in the same vein as though we had collaborated on what we’d be teaching. God’s faithfulness in confirming us in word, deed, sign, and wonder has certainly fueled our hearts for our days in this field to come. Stay with us for the next stage
of our building in this vision. A bore-hole to be drilled for water is next, followed by the footers and foundation being poured. Many brethren in the Ewaso Ngiro community are already expressing their desire to attend and have every benefit of this future Church/Bible School. For those of you who are serious about prayer, please agree with us for the provisions needed to bring this vision to fulfillment. Many thanks and blessings to all you co-laborers of this harvest!
His for the Uttermost Parts…Dave & Elese
Pre-hibernation greetings to all you Northern survivalists that are trying to hold on to the last memories of warmth and sunshine before we all go mole for the winter. Those of you in less dampening-to-the-spirit climates, we request you to pray for us in our hour of need. Not really. Actually, Elese and I included in a team of seven are once again headed for the Narok region of Kenya come Christmas Day. We will be staying on for approximately a month to set up housing for additional teams coming in through 2013 to assist the first and further phases of the Narok Project.
Though a month may be a very limited time frame in accomplishing much work in Africa, our hope is to see the bore hole dug for the future water supply of the church/Bible school. The construction of fencing-off the property and setting up a tower with cistern are also a part of what we hope to be doing. Beyond this, with having several ministers on board with us, we trust our host, Pastor Jackson Kenanda, to spread us out to teach in other area churches while having as much personal outreach to the local Maasai people of Ewaso Nyiro, as possible.
Our hearts that are brimming over with the joy of being sent by God to this people are also set for impact through the power of the Holy Spirit who works signs, wonders, and miracles in confirmation of His word. The Ugandan crusade team that joined us in Ewaso Nyiro back in May had told us, “With as many crusades as we have done in many places, this was the first crusade that we saw miracles manifested.” We are standing on this premise of mighty works begun there to see His further glory come to this people. Please agree with us in prayer as we prepare to go. For further information on this work, please go to our website at: www.crossoverglobal.com and click “Kenya Project” then read the “Narok Project”.
On another note, but same theme song of living in “the out” from Jerusalem to Judea to Samaria and to the uttermost parts, we recently had Rev. Pat Capwell with us from the Philippines. COGO was glad to share her on Sunday, 10/28, with Westlake Community Fellowship in Horseheads, NY. “Tita Pat”, as she is endearingly called in the Philippines or “Aunt Pat” is a graduate from Pinecrest Bible Training Center in upstate NY and has labored in many countries of the world bringing the gospel through the instruments of education, farming, trade skills, etc. The word she brought us concerning “distractions” was loaded with some very convicting goads of truth that would stiff any pew-sitter or spectator in the art of doing church. We look forward to having her again when she is stateside.
Last off, with continuing to find favor among the churches to minister, Elese and I would like to thank you all for the support we have received toward our labor both overseas and through the weekly COGO meetings. We treasure your fellowship, friendship, giftings, and comradery in the harvest. Be blessed in Jesus! “…bound in the bundle of the living with the Lord our God…”
David & Elese
From ours to yours - Here we are again wanting to keep you in the cross-hairs of what we are aimed at for future fulfillments. Elese and I felt that the below letter we just received from Bro. Ron DeVore and his wife, Shirley, would give you all an excellent illustration of their (WOMF’s) work in Africa at large. We felt it would also provide some of the particulars of what a mission trip entails. With the below WOMF Update highlighting our Cross Over Global team, we emboldened some of the text to draw your attention to our participation with the DeVores, the Ugandan team, and predominantly, the Maasai people of the Mara region in Kenya. God-willing you will be able to recognize the gap COGO presently seeks to fill in meeting the vision of our brother, Pastor Jackson Kenanda with WOMF.
We are not only excited about this mandate we have from the Lord, but are in hot pursuit of a return trip into this region for a longer stay. With looking to be very much a part of the initial ground breaking on the site we purchased for this work, we are awaiting a “GO” from the front to come and be fruitful in both the physical labor of this church-Bible school and the spiritual ministry further needed in evangelizing and discipling this people. As we may have mentioned before, the work is meant to be a ministry-base into all of Kenya.
Please consider our appeal to those of you in the Body of Christ and beyond. It is the same as it has been to us from the Lord, “Come over and help us” (Acts16:9). Our co-laboring here with WOMF is helping to see this work accomplished in short order. Again, all financial contributions ear-marked as “The Narok Project,” will be completely applied to that project. Send to: Cross Over Global Outreach, PO Box 272, Elmira, NY 14902. Now, have at it and enjoy Papa Ron’s letter…
Greetings to all of our great Partners in Mission,
Shirley and I have been occupied in Uganda and Kenya as well as hosting a number of teams with some wonderful results. We are so glad we have partners such as you to assist us in reaching into some far corners, to those whom we may have missed in times gone by. One of our highlights would have to be our breaking into a new area of Kenya working together with a great team (COGO) from New York. This team was made up of individuals just like you or me, with a great passion to reach those largely unreached areas.
The challenge I could see in this particular outreach was this area was an area of land that had been largely unreached, made up of the tribal people of the land of the Maasai Mara. Now I must say they were not unreached in the sense of never having a shred of the gospel taken to them, but in fact they were people largely untouched as to actually hearing the Christian Gospel; it might be said they had heard but never listened. Our job
was to start with these people in a crusade and move them a bit daily in the direction of finally actually hearing what they were now listening to; the Gospel of Jesus.
So let me back up a little bit to show how these experiences do actually happen. First we put together a team of persons from our own Uganda, Africa home base. These are part of a larger team of about 30 members. Each can preach or sing or pray for the sick and demon possessed or whatever the need is. We choose a portion of this team and usually take along our techies who can run the generator to give us power for 5 days of ministry; they also keep food available and get water.
Then, this well equipped team goes out of the base in the early morning to the site of where the crusade will be set in place .Our people go out into the remote area and go from house to house sharing the gospel with the families in their own homes. After a long morning of this practice the team then travels back to the home base where they are fed, then back into the bus to the site where we had worked all morning and we launch the crusade. This crusade lasts for some hours and when ended we finally show portions of the Great Jesus Video in their own language. The team then comes back to the base and has their evening meal. After a brief rest they return to our assembly area and launch a full course Revival where the people crowd into the small building we have rented and we preach the word with the power of God being manifested every evening.
This whole experience happened over about 4 days with many being born again. They will add to our new church which we had launched upon the new, young pastor’s graduation from our bible school back in Uganda. This pastor, Brother Jackson Kenanda, had been there for about two years of early work by himself with some early converts and is now ready to be officially launched. Can you imagine the total impact on this small tribal community deep in the heart land of the Maasai Mara? We even performed the wedding for this young pastor, an act which demonstrated to the villagers that this pastor was here to stay.
Now where do you come into this great picture of success in church planting? A highlight for Shirley, myself, and the whole team came about when a group in New York (COGO) responded to my request to join with us in this crusade. They flew all the way from New York to our site about 150 miles from the capitol of Kenya to join us for the whole experience. What a great time we had; we are so glad this team came with us and then took on a personal drive to remain with us as participating Partners in Mission. Today they have sent to us funds to launch the first phase of a brand-new church and they are doing all they can to help us finish this great project.
So one can see that with our Partners in Mission it makes it possible to build and launch more and more churches located way out and beyond the normal areas, into the areas where the gospel is so in demand. In a few days we shall open up our annual Leadership Conference and during the week of meetings, praise, prayer and teaching we shall see another new batch of our churches ordained and launched. All of this is easily accomplished with you, our Partners in Mission, working with us in doing the actual launching as you have heard about, and standing with us in all the many functions God has called us to do. Are you ready for this? I have shared what it takes to launch a program of construction to plant a church but it also does take funds! Our projects here are so cost effective that it seems a shame to waste any time at all.
Can you Partners help us carry a bigger picture then ever? So much we are prepared to do but funds are a bit dragging right now as summer ends and families are getting ready for school there in the USA and we know this is a challenge to all of us. Can we work together? We are looking at asking many of you to dive in with us. Remember that saying we used to have when we were kids preparing to go swimming, “Come on in; the water is fine?" Well, we have found it so and long to see you in the water with us……………………..
Until we meet again, we ask God to bless you real good!
Ron and Shirley DeVore
President and Founders
World Outreach Ministry Foundation
|We had a 4 day crusade to reach the people of the Maasai Mara in Kenya and help launch our new church, Pastor Jackson is a graduate of our Bible College in Uganda.
||This is the building they are currently having church in, but we have just received funds to launch the first phase of a new church building! Please join with us to finish this work.
Now, to you partners of COGO: This present mission has already been launched by both our having been on the ground and having provided a first-fruits of finance to see the project get off the ground. Those of us who have been there have returned carrying our clusters of fruit. Like Caleb coming from the Valley of Eshcol (Cluster) we declare to you all, “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it” (Num.13:23,24,30).
Thank you ever so much for your prayers which have been the backbone of all that has been and continues to be accomplished through this ministry. Blessings to you according to His riches in glory!
In His Hands,
Dave & Elese
Dear COGO Co-laborers,
This is it now. We have the initial financial breakdown from Pastor Jackson Kenanda and Papa Ron DeVore for the “Narok Project.” If you’ve been keeping up with our COGO updates, this is for the building of a church facility in Ewaso Nyiro in south-central Kenya. It will be the home for the church body, a Bible school, and the base of KCOM (Kenya Christian Outreach Ministries). KCOM is Kenya’s specific branch of Ron & Shirley DeVore’s mission organization WOMF (World Outreach Ministry Foundation). Through divine connection, Elese and I have recently begun doing some ministry with Ron & Shirley who have twenty-five years of tried and proven mission experience in ten countries. They have specifically invited us into this new field in Kenya and we have by faith taken up the cause!
As you know, in May a COGO team of ten put their feet on the land which we had purchased earlier this spring. It is good ground in a prime development area set aside for housing and a market center, not far from the main road leading into the city of Narok with close access to electricity. In addition, there’s opportunity to purchase adjoining property in the future. We estimate this entire building project will cost $50,000. Dear brethren, we’re ready for Phase I of the Narok Project!
Phase I is everything necessary before the actual construction of the facility can take place. This includes the property fencing, drilling water, and building the water tower. Here’s the breakdown as we have it:
FENCING – wire mesh with an iron gate
70 posts @ $3.00 = $210
Chain ring - 8 rolls @ $65 = $520
Barbed wire – 4 rolls @ $70ea. = $280
Binding wire - 10kg @ $2.00per kg. = $20
U-nails - 5kg @ $3.00per kg. = $15
Digging 70 holes = $20
Labor = $270
Total = $1335
BUILDING THE WATER TOWER/TANK = $5000
DRILLING THE WATER
Geologist: He will take a ground survey, measure the water level, issue the certificate = $1000
Engineer: He will do the actual drilling based on the geologist’s report. Therefore, this estimated cost is yet to be made.
TOTAL PHASE I - With the information we have at this point, we estimate: $10,000USD.
As you can see, these are manageable financial chunks. (Maybe some of you would like to take a bite!?) As stated, we will not know the final drilling cost until we receive the geological report. But, we trust this estimate will make the final Phase I cost no more than $10,000 USD.
Now, we’re ready to talk turkey to you folks. This is where the rubber meets the road to build in the Kingdom of God. Elese and I are here to tell you that our labor on this ground will provide ministry to affect the entire country of Kenya . We have seen the harvest in Kenya and the fields are white and ready! We invite you to invest in this Project with us – this is not about sowing, but reaping! In Matthew 6:19-21, Jesus commands us to “lay up treasures in heaven.” This passage of scripture was a theme song of George Muller, who had a tremendous work in England caring for thousands of orphans during the 1800’s. He was a firm believer that:
"Just as people put one sum after another in an earthly bank and it’s recorded to their credit to be used afterward, so is every penny used for the Lord’s sake, given in the love of Christ to the poor or anyway spent in the work of God. He marks it down in the book of remembrance. He considers it as laid up in heaven. The money is not lost, it cannot be lost; it is laid up in the bank of heaven where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. It is absolutely secure."
So, here is an opportunity to lay up treasures in heaven and earn the best interest imaginable! We could go on and on sharing about this project and the integrity of those we are co-laboring with, but we want to leave you with these few, specific thoughts and details concerning this new venture. If you would like to donate, our COGO address is: PO Box 272, Elmira, NY, 14902 . All monies designated for the Narok Project will go 100% into this project. More information can be found on our website where PayPal is also available for your convenience (unfortunately, PayPal will take a small percentage).
Thank you all for your time, prayers, and considerations with these matters.
"I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work” -John 9:4.
In His Hands,
Pastor Dave & Elese Cosgrove
Summer 2012 salutations to all you stateside sun-soakers, lake-lovers, garden-growers, or whatever else you may be. COGO is back on the grid! Our team of ten recently returned from the Narok region of Kenya, or more specifically, a community called Ewaso Ngiro (meaning “red water”). A week-long crusade in this predominantly Maasai town of barely 1000 souls saw a significant number of people give their lives to the Lord Jesus Christ daily. This was not only the results of the crusade, but our daily street and house-to-house witnessing. Evening revival meetings brought sound teachings to the existing infant church there called Ewaso Ngiro Worship Centre.
The pastor of this new work, Jackson Kenanda, is a graduate from the Yesu Akwagala Bible College in Uganda, founded by Brother Ron DeVore, who is affectionately known as “Papa Ron”. In mid-May our COGO team of ten joined Papa Ron and Shirley DeVore’s Ugandan team of twelve to advance the fledgling church. This church is presently meeting in a very small rented building. They will eventually move to the plot of ground COGO purchased in April 2012 where the new church facility to be built will house both their growing congregation and a Bible school. This work will be the base for World Outreach Ministry Fellowship (WOMF) to reach the furthest parts of Kenya. COGO’s present co-laboring with the DeVores has been a divine orchestration of relationship(s) to see the Kingdom’s advancement in Kenya. With looking to raise monies for this estimated $50,000 project over the next year, we are also hoping to put people on the ground there to assist Pastor Kenanda with his ministry and the construction to come. Any and all contributions toward this work are welcomed with great appreciation. COGO’s policy remains the same from its inception - all checks designated to our projects go 100% into that project. The memo name for this project is “Narok Project”.
On another note, Elese and I would like to mention that the teamwork and effect of this trip was beyond all expectation. From the first day of our arrival in Nairobi, our 7am time of prayer and fellowship in the Word was accompanied by an unprecedented anointing of God that carried the Lord’s thoughts and intentions for the days that followed. Dreams, visions, quickening of the scriptures, words of knowledge, etc. were the real food of our stay in Kenya. The outcome of this was the Lord showing His limitless power through us by simply being willing vessels to act according to His leading. One young girl received her sight and another her hearing when prayed for. A man with a painful arm injury was healed immediately and two days later gave his life to Jesus. No doubt, the Lord is no respecter of persons! A gal with a twisted hip, hobbling with a metal crutch was healed instantly from her pain and found straightened two days later in our last Sunday’s church service. We give God the glory for the great things He has done and invite you to use the link here:
Cross Over Global on Facebook
Some of the correspondence that followed us home from Pastor Kenanda, our Ugandan team leader, Iryn, and Papa Ron DeVore were of great encouragement to the COGO team. Our sharing these (below) is not with the thought or intent of receiving any glory to ourselves. We seek only to magnify the Lord for the sufficiency He is able to provide for anyone who would trust Him and step out to become the men and women we were meant to be. We are all meant to pass from one glorious revealing of heavenly realities to another and it is not by remaining sedentary, but by being daring enough to be led by His voice. There is nothing He calls us to, that He Himself has not already gone before us in, so “Let us cross over to the other side” (Mk.4:35). Remember, in Him we live, move and have our BE-ing… David & Elese
“…the team that came from Uganda and States for the crusade and revivals…may the Lord bless them so richly and let everyone feel that every service rendered was so crucial and without it we could not make it. Thanks once again. We saw God at work. He healed the deaf, saved, and His presence was so real. Men and Women of God, thanks for such sacrifice and God bless you. The time you spent with us left us a changed people and we will never be the same. After the team left, people are asking about them. Some are giving their lives to God. The place did not remain the same….” - Pastor Jackson Kenanda
“Am writing to thank you and the Cross Over Global Outreach team for being part of the Kenya mission. It was such a privilege for the Ugandan team to minister with you all. We are praying that another door opens for us to serve the Lord together as one team. Hope you all got home safely. We were blessed and may God bless all of you in return. Please send my love to that praying team and tell them no chain prayers in the night for now!” - Blessings and greetings to your family, Iryn
“Hello mighty warriors! Well we had the time of our life and that is for sure. We feel like this was one of the best teams we have worked with and are so pumped to be a part of you all….” – Ron & Shirley DeVore
Hello One and All,
We are blessed to mess with you again by issuing you this month’s COGO update. Our starting point in March was with Ron & Shirley DeVore from World Outreach Ministries joining us for a week. Their ministry here throughout the week was wonderful. Many people were affected by the Lord in various ways. Some were not only touched by Ron and Shirley’s words, but by the very temperament they addressed everyone. Many people felt challenged to enter the Lord’s rest where every provision of God is available, present now and faith-accessible for us to be a people unmoved by circumstances and the behavior of others, while maintaining integrity before the Lord. The prevailing sense was to be complete in God so as to reach all the Lord intends with our lives. A phrase once shared with me by a dear pastor-friend comes to mind: “The test is rest!”
The whole of that week netted on a financial scale nearly $10,000 for the DeVores work. This included $5000 needed to buy the land for the church to be built in Narok, Kenya. A team of ten of us will be traveling in May to do crusades and assist the initial growth of this work. Blessings to all of you who so generously contributed to the cause of Christ in reaching these “uttermost parts.” Further blessings to Christian Hope Center for graciously receiving the ministry of the DeVores. CD’s are available from the awesome service there on Sunday. Contact us.
Moving on to the Philippines, our dear Bulgarian brother, Blago shared an amazing story. He is just settling into his labor these last two months under the ministry of Pat Capwell at IFL. Here is an excerpt from his email:
“…I want to share testimony with you about one accident that happens to me and I want to encourage you because our Lord is great and amazing and His mercy is never ending. 4 days ago I was working in the garden. While I was walking there in the grass I feel that something bite me, but in the same moment somebody calling me, and I just look around for who is the one who called me. So later after that when I already know who was the person calling me, I just look at my foot and I see there is two holes and little blood and something liquid like water. First time I was thinking, oh maybe it's not snake, maybe it's frog or lizard, so I just sit down and suck the "poison". I start praying and praying because I was kind of afraid to tell anybody about what happened, that there is snake that bite me. So I didn't do anything for about 3 days and was fine. Everything was like a normal day. But yesterday I already was dizzy and I feel pain in the place where the snake bites me. I calling one of the ladies who is a nurse here in the ministry so she just see it. She says it's really poisonous snake; she cut off some of the skin around it that was already dead skin, she put on medicines and we go to hospital. The doctors were excited that 3 days nothing happens with me and I’m still alive, because they also were 100% that it is snake bite. They just gave me 3 injections and this time I become more dizzy and weak and tired. Today is fourth day and I’m still alive and I thank the Lord, because snake bites me but He protects me from death. I'm thankful because our God is not sending me here to die, He sending me here to serve him. I remember about Paul when he was on the Island called Malta, while he was gathering the bushes one snake bite his hand and he just shake the hand till the snake fall. So nothing happens with Paul also, because the Lord protects him. The devil will try to stop you but God is He who will protect you and I’m so thankful to the Lord that he protects my life and I’m still alive and I can share this testimony with you. The snake that bites me is a cobra snake and it's big for the way of biting and the distance of the holes. They say that it is a big cobra….Great is our Lord.”
To say the least, we are thrilled to have had the Lord connect us with Blago while in Bulgaria last year. It has been an honor for COGO to assist sending him to the field considering his faith and vision for meeting God’s call on his life. His heart for the many in the Philippines is already affecting the specific few the Lord has given him.
On that same thought, I’d like to encourage those of you who feel your labor is limited in its reach when you have a heart for many. A critical note to consider is, first and foremost, you need fellowship with the Lord Himself to know what He is up to in your life. The particular, specific thing you hear or recognize from the Lord is what will produce the greatest outcome. COGO is not a large organization, but we’ve been very attentive to the Lord’s voice to recognize the divine connections He has for us. By responding to these connections supportively, resourcefully, distinctly, no matter their appearance or measure to our natural eye, we have seen entire nations touched. As Christians, we can sow much by responding to the great need before us and then end up disillusioned with it coming to little or we can be moved by our fellowship with God toward the one thing He gives us and see it come to much. Elese and I have chosen the latter approach and we continue to find God’s approval and our boundaries being enlarged. Our COGO base is growing to meet more fields at their invitation.
Last July, the night before ministering in a church in Russe, Bulgaria, Elese and I were discussing how we felt it overwhelming enough to be working in one or two countries at the same time. We didn’t know if we would want the responsibility for more fields than this. Interestingly, the next day, the pastor of the Russe church, who is considered a clear, prophetic voice to that country, brought a specific word from the Lord to us, saying, “I have many fields for you, if you want them, not just one or two!” This brother knew nothing about us or our conversation from the night before. To hear the Lord say this made our hearts leap at the challenge, knowing that His grace would handle what we saw as overwhelming. The only response we now have is, “Yes, Lord!”
We have also seen Niki Markov’s ministry grow exponentially from the early days of his humble beginnings. In 2006 COGO purchased a larger printing press for his Eagle Publishing House and financially supported the upward construction of that building. At that time he had a modest number of distributors for the mature Christian literature he was printing. However, the publishing house has now acquired over 350 distributors, printing more than 150 titles of quality ministry books. This has pressed Niki far beyond his own region of Silitra to ministering throughout Bulgaria, into Romania, Nepal, Kenya, and more recently, in Thailand he has joined with some 50 brethren from 23 third world nations of Asia and the Middle East. These opportunities are making for many more open doors to reach further into the world, but it all begins in the simplicity of a divine connection birthed from fellowship with the Lord.
I exhort you to stay the course of His call on you and as Oswald Chambers states, “Never let your grasp exceed your reach.” Stay tuned for more in the way of our Global Cross Over-sss!
Dave & Elese Cross-grove
AKA – Lois & Clark or is that…Lewis and Clark?
Greetings to you all! Elese and I want to put out an invitation for the upcoming COGO meeting on Tuesday, February 28 at 6pm with Ron and Shirley DeVore from Uganda via Washington State. We’ll be meeting in the Great Room of the Big Flats Community Center, 476 Maple Ave., Big Flats, NY.
PLEASE, mark this on your calendars now, if you have an interest in missions or the testimony of God to the uttermost parts. We have promoted the COGO meetings as not just Cross Over Global Outreach, but also, COME and GO as you are able. Well, this is one of those meetings that you will definitely want to COME!
Ron & Shirley DeVore will also be ministering at Christian Hope Center Church in Painted Post (22 John St.) on Sunday, March 4, 2012. The service begins at 10:30 am.
Ron and Shirley DeVore, married 57 plus years, began their ministry in the early 1960s serving as youth pastors in their local church, becoming associate pastors in the 1970s, and serving on the pastoral staff for the next several years.
In 1987, called by God through their church, the DeVores traveled to Uganda, Africa, landing there just 15 months after the end of more than 20 years of civil war. They were sent to assist a young Ugandan student, on summer leave from Bible College in Seattle, WA, to see how the church could help the Ugandan, Steve Mayanja, plant the first ever Evangelical church in his village.
Now, more than twenty four years later, the ministry has blossomed into 150 plus churches in Uganda, three in the neighboring nation of Sudan, one in Kenya amongst the Masai tribe, three in the Congo and two in Rwanda.
Further, working together with their many team members both Western and African, they have now founded eight schools, two Bible colleges, minister in sixty plus prisons with hundreds and even thousands being born again annually through the work of their full time prison staff, provide full time care for more than four hundred orphans through their Feed His Lambs Program, and are presently building more new church and school buildings.
Recently they have completed a new bush type 24-bed clinic in Sudan; this clinic is a true life saving institution located in the midst of a hurting people suffering from the ravages of more than twenty year of civil war.
Their medical team cares for over two hundred leprosy victims annually while their clinics treat more than twelve thousand sick, wounded and diseased victims annually.
A new African children’s village is almost completed and is becoming the home of 100 orphans being housed in 10 new homes designed to be a model village showing the way to a healthier life for suffering Africans.
A Baby Home designed for 48 new born and abandoned babies is under construction and scheduled to be completed in 2012. Phase one is completed and we house and love 10 such babies.
Recently Ron and Shirley have opened a ministry to the eleven Unreached Mongolian Hill tribes in the forbidden mountains of Bangladesh. A people untouched with the gospel for centuries but now being reached with their teams of born again believers from those very tribes. Many are coming to Jesus and the work has just begun.
Your continued prayers for the DeVores and team as they plunge head on into the many challenges and opportunities will be so appreciated.
To put this in the proper perspective the DeVores know it is all the Grace of God that produces whatever success they have had and it is all about “reaching the lost what ‘ere the cost.”
Looking forward to having many of you join us. Blessings to all!
Graced in Him,
Pastor Dave & Elese
: Christmas Greetings to all. With heading into the holy-days we thought it a fashionable gift to pass along to those of you who contributed to the building of the MSOMI Training Center, the below pictures of the final product. Now, to get the full effect of our 8-year labor from the ground up, go online to our website at www.crossoverglobal.com; click on “Kenya Project” and ride the slide show from beginning to the end you now see. These photos sent us by Pastor John Okinda have been a heart-rending joy and blessing, knowing that they reveal more than a building to many of us who have been behind the scenes. To us and those who believed our message, it was a God-given vision conceived in the heart of a man, confirmed with signs and wonders, imparted to others by the Holy Spirit, and fulfilled through the divine enablement of grace. Wherein, we declare all glory, honor, power and praise to the King of Glory!
The movie, Field of Dreams has an interesting statement made by the character, Ray Kinsella, (actor, Kevin Costner) concerning his close-encounter directive of the God-kind. The quote is: “There comes a time when all the cosmic tumblers have clicked into place and the universe opens itself up for a few seconds to show you what is possible.” Knowing this was a natural man’s evaluation of “time and opportunity happening to all men,” it is a very real matter to those who have learned the way of the Lord of the Universe. Opportunities from God are revealed to us that exceed the bounds of our strength, numbers, skill, or swiftness. If we simply act in faith of the divine orders, we reap the benefit of both experiencing the Lord and having the testimony of His glory fulfilled “in earth as it is in heaven.” This training center is but one of those COGO endeavors.
: With saying this, we’d like to revive your hearts again to the vision of our Bulgarian brother Blago, who is looking to return to the Philippines in January to fulfill the missionary call of God on his life for that people in a permanent way. Here’s an encouraging note from Pastor Niki Markov:
We had a monthly meeting with the pastors from the area and Pastor Emil asked all the churches in our area to raise some money for Blago's trip. I shared with the pastors about our trip to the Philippines and that this is the Lord's doing. Last night I ministered in Pastor Peter's church in Aidemir and tommorow he will give me $100 towards Blago's trip, all the churches will get involved which makes my heart rejoice that the time has come when Bulgaria will send missionaries. I think and pray all the churches from the area will be able to raise at least $500 USD.
With lacking just a small amount of the $1800 needed to send Blago, please consider sealing our brother’s trip with a contribution today earmarked “Blago Trip.” This is his time and opportunity with a wonderful door opened to him to show what is possible.
: To assist folks wanting to contribute to COGO, we have recently incorporated PayPal onto our website. Please feel free to access it for your convenience. We have nonprofit clearance so there is only a small percentage removed from your donation for its use. Otherwise, checks can still be made payable to “COGO” and sent to PO Box 272, Elmira, NY 14902.
: With coming up on the 2012 New Year, our concentration will begin to focus entirely on acquiring the ground needed for the church facility in Narok. The evangelistic efforts we cited from our November COGO update for this coming May will undoubtedly bring a harvest requiring a gathering place. That ground to be bought remains a $5000 venture we feel the Holy Spirit challenging us to meet. Again, please prayerfully consider being a part with us. Eight years ago, a week-long crusade we were involved with in the city of Awendo, brought forth a harvest of some 800 people. The immediate need was for a facility to house such a crowd. The lack thereof was only able to contain a small percentage of them. God willing, many found their way into other churches of the community. Our heart is with giving these brethren the ground to meet the harvest.
: As a last note, back in July of this year, Elese and I began mid-week COGO meetings here in the Horseheads, NY area. This came at the request of brethren that were looking for further teaching that was aimed at, what we refer to as, “The Out.” This is simply discipleship-type teaching preparing and provoking brethren to answer the call of God on their lives whether stateside or internationally. It is meant to motivate us out from the comfortable, familiar, and secure to the furthest reaches the Lord has predestined us for “...in Jerusalem, to Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth." We would like to extend an invitation to anyone interested in attending these meetings, while making it clear that we are not a church, but a resource to the church at large. We do, however, have brethren that relate exclusively to us and our overseas mission outreaches to support our mandate of assisting the God-given vision of nationals. Contact us at email@example.com for the specifics of dates, time, and place for the COGO meetings.
Until we meet again. Have a great Christmas and thank you for your abiding friendship, prayers, and support in meeting together the Lord’s request to “Go into all the world and make disciples.”
God bless us all, everyone!...Dancer & Prancer Cosgrove.
(Ok, ok…Dave & Elese)
Special Fall Greetings to all of you from the multi-colored fallen-leaf state of New York. With turning a page on seasons that come and go, we’d like to turn your attention from the past update mentioning our brethren laboring in the Philippines to their return and our upcoming labor of 2012 in the Narok area of Kenya.
: The trip was a huge success and Don, Niki, and Blago have returned to their respective home countries with God-stories to tell. The collective offering Don brought to his Aunt Pat’s ministry (IFL) had a surprising twist to it. All the funding for the completion of the school building was already provided, but the Dept of Education had visited and said a proper school library was needed or else (!) they would not be able to continue running the school after December. It turns out that the money Don brought was what was needed for this library (which was purchased from another school being closed). The guys were part of moving, cleaning, and sorting that library. Their week also included medical missions, flood relief, village housing inspections, and plenty of spiritual ministry. Don Capwell gives a great day-to-day journal write-up of the details of their trip with many photos on: isaiah58.shutterfly.com
. We encourage you to check it.
Blago, Don, Niki with Filipino brethren
Two other significant results of this trip were as follows: First, Pastor Niki Markov contacted us upon returning to Bulgaria to say that he felt moved by the Holy Spirit to put together a team of 5-6 men from the local churches to go back to the Philippines in 2012 and assist the construction of a church facility there. This mission trip “would be a first, but not the last” for these Bulgarian brothers from Silistra! Secondly, the trip for Blago was his inundation to a future of living and serving in the Philippines. He is planning on leaving Bulgaria at the outset (January)
of 2012 to work with Pat Capwell’s ministry at IFL long-term. The cost of sending and planting him there for a year is approximately $1800 which we are looking to raise immediately. We encourage any of you that are seeking heavenly ground to sow into - do it with this brother!
The primary purpose of this May 2012 trip is to support a church planting in a region that is renowned for hosting a sizable population of the Masai people. These shepherding people, recognized by their red tunics, staffs, beads, stretched earlobes with shaved heads, generally reside on the fringe of the Masai Mara game reserve where in times past Masai men sealed their manhood by killing a lion. Are there any men out there hearing me? I thought not!
Our invitation to be a part of a week-long crusade includes door-to-door ministry, prison and school visitation, along with daily foundational teaching of new converts. The week will conclude with Pastor Jackson Kenenda’s wedding! This wonderful undertaking has a specific, essential, ground-floor need that Elese and I have felt to take on as COGO. That is, purchasing the ground-floor or the land necessary for the church building.
The cost of the property is $5000. Please consider being a part in helping establish this outreach vision and work. Again, all contributions can be sent directly to Cross Over Global Outreach, PO Box 272, Elmira, NY 14902.
Blessings to all of you who continue to co-labor with us in prayer, service, and financial support as we reach the uttermost parts.
“The Lord supply all your need according to His riches in glory.”
In His Hands,
Ragged-y Andy & Ragged-y Ann Cosgrove
(a.k.a. Dave & Elese)
It’s been a full summer this year with two back-to-back overseas trips. Now, finding ourselves home from Uganda, we’re eager to retrace some of our steps for any of you bored with other forms of entertainment. This will be short enough for any ADD folks too, so hang in there and read on:
Elese and I along with other guest speakers from California, Washington, and Florida ministered in two conference locations running simultaneously on different levels of the same mountainside in the capital city of Kampala, Uganda. A company of some 1500-2000 believers (ranging from students, adults, to pastors) gathered at various scheduled times and places to be instructed in the word. When we weren’t ministering, we took time to hear and encourage our fellow guest ministers. The comradery and support of one another only added to the richness of the word and presence of the Holy Spirit among us. The close of the conference was an ordination service for 40-50 pastors followed by the guest ministry praying over every one of the 5-600 folks attending!
We made some outstanding divine connections, the most significant one with Ron and Shirley DeVore (75 years young) who both invited and hosted us in their guest house there in Kampala. What an awesome place to be broken in to Africa. It's likeness to a Spanish hacienda with arches, courtyard, palms, verandas, and a multitude of guestrooms was hugely accommodating. Stationed at the top of the mountain, it overlooks not only the city and the surrounding hills, but the Bible College, church, and the Bethany Baby House being built. Other locations have their orphan facilities, primary and secondary schools, Hannah’s House (a place for at-risk women), and more than 120 affiliated churches.
In our estimation, the DeVores would be considered apostles, though they take no titles. They have traveled extensively around the world laying down their lives for the gospel. Our last few days with them were spent sitting and listening in awe of the history God has been allowed to forge in their lives. It was like hearing a script from the Book of Acts; full of the leadings, signs, wonders, and miracles of God. We were extremely honored to be with such humble servants. Their organization, World Outreach Ministry Foundation (http://womf.org/), which was founded on the same vision as COGO, is well-developed to handle the purchase of foreign properties, establish churches, entertain teams for missions, etc. With feeling the stamp of heaven on our relationship, we will be working more closely with them in the future.
In fact, Elese and I were requested to return next May to join these brethren in Narok, Kenya where a new work is beginning with a young pastor, Jackson Kenenda, a graduate of their Bible College. We will join the Ugandan team of brethren (possibly with a USA team of our own!) to be part of a week-long crusade, which includes door-to-door ministry, prison and school visitation, along with daily foundational teaching of new converts. The week will culminate with Jackson’s wedding!
In our August 2011 update is a detailed report of COGO’s Bulgaria mission trip. It included a request to raise airfare for Blago Genchev, a precious Bulgarian brother with a profound testimony and call to the Philippine Islands. This would enable him to accompany Niki Markov and our brother Don Capwell there this October. We want to report and rejoice that the monies were sent and God miraculously blessed and multiplied them like the five loaves and two fish. Not just Blago’s ticket was bought, but Niki who thought he’d be staying behind due to insufficient funds, bought his, too! Here’s Blago’s personal thank you:
Hello! Greetings in the Loving name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour!
I really don’t know what to say now; I really can’t stop the tears. Last night when I read your e-mail I just started crying and crying. The whole night I didn’t sleep. I just stayed before God and I cried at his throne and I give him thanks. Even now after one day in work, I can’t stop my tears when I write this e-mail. I want to say one big THANK YOU DAVE, ELESE, and to the team COGO. THANK YOU BROTHERS AND SISTERS. YOU ARE REALLY BIG BLESSING FOR ME AND MY LIFE. I want to give all of you my hugs now. Thank you all for your open hearts to help me with the finances. I pray for you there and I thank God for you and what you do. Know that my e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org. All of you who want, can write me and I also can inform you what happens with my missionary trip and with my serving. Also feel free to send me your prayer requests and I will pray for you. I will be so happy someday to see you and hug you all. I’m really thankful and I will never forget this.
Don Capwell’s Aunt Pat has a 25-year worldwide ministry based in the Philippines where the guys are converging for this trip. Don is currently raising funds for the construction of one of her high schools. COGO would like to help send an offering with him. Check out this link
and please, consider giving a generous gift in the next three weeks earmarked for the Philippines (use our letterhead address).
As always, we so appreciate all of you who have continued to be co-laborers with us in the Lord’s harvest from nation to nation. Your prayers and financial support have contributed in transforming numerous lives while furthering the kingdom of God. Thank you, thank you, and thank you.
Blessings to all of you……..Dave and Elese
Zdrasti! (Bulgarian Greetings),
With the course completed, Bulgaria is only temporarily in our rear view mirror. Having returned from two weeks in Silistra, Bulgaria, the hearts of team members are full with the happenings we had on the ground. The focus of pouring a pad in front of Pastor Emil Nedelchev’s “New Generation Church” was more a success than could be expected. This pad, as we formerly mentioned, will provide the surface for recreation such as basketball and an outdoor café for evangelism. Upon arriving, we were on the job within a day or so working alongside a couple Bulgarians hired to oversee the pour. With assisting the dig, framing, and pour of two truckloads of concrete to complete the pad, the Bulgarian who headed up the job was so impressed with our flanking labor to his that he cut the original cost substantially. This made for leftover monies that bought the church a refrigerator! Our own Paul Russo, who has been in construction for some 34 years, bore the brunt of much of our team’s labor. Geoff Pollack and I applauded our beast-of-burden-brother with offering our own measure of work to his. I held a shovel …and the water!
The church facility is a 150-year-old synagogue that still has the Hebrew lettering on its face. The front court yard where the pour was made is beautifully shaded with a stylish wooden fence that now encloses this white concrete pad. By week’s end, the church held an outdoor barbeque to christen the ground, inviting brethren and locals to be a part. A great time of fellowship was had by all.
Apart from Silistra, which was our base for doing ministry, we had the opportunity to minister out in other major cities such as Varna on the Black Sea, Rousse, and also one of the gypsy villages. Each opportunity had wonderful results with the word finding its mark and prayers being met by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. We, of course, glorify the Lord for showing Himself to be “the God of the living and not the dead.” On another note, our wives, Crissie, Tess, and Elese, had some serious input with the church in teaching English on four evenings. Their interaction with quite a number of excited-to-learn Bulgarians, ranging from 8 to 80 years old, had the profound effect of knitting their hearts to this body of believers. With so many relationships kindled among the saints of Silistra, we look forward to future trips.
We’d be remiss if we left out a unique acquaintance we made with a 22-year-old brother from Dobrich, named Blago, who was simply visiting the church in Silistra. Our meeting him had the definite fragrance of God all over it. He began to share with us about the call of God on his life and his serving the Lord as a youth leader with his church. He has been mocked, pelted with stones, and driven out from areas where he had led other brethren to show works of love toward the unsaved. Following these harrassings, they would return to the same people that rejected them, helping to dig and plant their gardens, etc… till they asked of the hope that was in them. Salvations were imminent. Beyond this, Blago shared of the Lord hounding him on five occasions with the same dream calling him to the Philippines and more specifically, the Davao region in the southern islands of the Philippines. Our brother Don Capwell and Niki Markov are headed there in October and have felt to include Blago in their trip. COGO would like to raise the support for our brother, Blago, to make the trip with our brethren (approx. $1100). From the time we had with this young brother and the testimony of the Lord that has followed his pursuit of the Lord, we feel confident that the soil of this life is rich for sowing into it. Please consider contributing to the cause of seeing this brother through. (Also, keep us Cosgroves in your prayers as we will be leaving for Uganda Aug. 18th.)
In Him, Dave & Elese
Greetings and good to be back online with you all.
For those of you who have thought we’ve been Lost in America, it’s not true; we knew where we were all the time! So, read on:
Last April I spent several weeks traveling through Kenya, Tanzania, and Burundi meeting with missionary families and hearing the testimonies of the gospel’s reach through their lives and regions. My specific destiny was to reach Bujumbura in Burundi where only five years ago these people finally emerged from fifteen years of civil war. What has followed has been nothing short of a revival saturating this small country known as “the Heart of Africa.” The denomination I connected with (FECABU) grew from 38 to 486 churches in this very short time frame and many of their congregations exceed a thousand people! While there, I had the wonderful privilege of ministering in two of these churches where the presence of the Lord was unimaginable - “…joy unspeakable and full of glory” is the only way I can describe it.
The outcome of these travels has provided several open doors to Cross Over Global Outreach (COGO) for future ministry. Following a lengthy interview with the FECABU overseers of Burundi’s five regions, a red carpet of welcome was rolled out to us for bringing ministry among them. To say the least, we are excited at the prospect of serving this people in time to come.
While in Mombasa, Kenya, I had the pleasure of meeting Ron and Shirley DeVore, from Tacoma, Washington who share the same vision as COGO – “assisting the God-given vision of nationals.” Their organization called, World Outreach Ministry Foundation, is presently working in ten countries. They are “coincidentally” laboring on one project in Lolgorian, Kenya with African brethren we have known personally from our time spent in Migori, Kenya. My fellowship with the DeVores led to an invite to come to Kampala, Uganda this August and speak at a large pastors’ conference they host every year. We have an additional invitation starting a few days later back in our African hometown of Migori, Kenya, where we look forward to seeing brethren we shared years with while constructing the MSOMI (Migori School of Ministry International) facility.
Over Easter, our Bulgarian brother, Pastor Niki Markov and his pastor, Emil Nedelchev, spent a week in our home while ministering among the Glad Tidings’ congregation. Niki and Emil will be preparing the ground for a team of us coming in July to pour a concrete pad for an outdoor café and recreational area. This is an extremely viable form of evangelistic outreach to the local community. Some of the team will also be revamping the sound system in their church with equipment donated and soon-to-be-shipped from GT. Of course, spiritual ministry will abound!
The cost for the work at hand in Bulgaria will be approximately $1500. We would appreciate your prayers for this trip and any contribution you can make to meet the financial need. These projects will give our brethren a leg up to reach their community of some 100,000 people in Silistra, Bulgaria. For any contribution with request, we would like to send you a brand new 5-track EP from the worship band, Oceans and Vessels (our son, Jay, is the bass player). Check out their website and music at: www.oceansandvessels.com
. With advance thanks, blessings to you all…
Dave and Elese Cosgrove…………… or is that Cos-global?!
Here we are again, finally breaking the silence of a year past to let you know that we are not MIA. The year has been filled with change, stamping us with the scriptural truth that “many are the plans of a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” Our plans to lead another team to Migori this past February were overthrown with the tribal hostilities that arose from the presidential elections in Kenya. The volatile conditions through the beginning of 2008 resulted in over one thousand people perishing and multiple thousands displaced from their homes. These effects reached even into Migori where the MSOMITrainingCenter is located. A clip from Pastor John Okinda’s letter conveys one specific scene: “This morning we received 400 people from NAKURU and NAIVASHA, it was a scene you wish to forget quickly but you cannot. The people were narrating how they saw their wives, husbands and children killed. They brought with them 12 orphans who lost both their parents. These people had not eaten for days. People were wailing in Migori in a way that shocked everyone.”
With the violence subsiding by summer, Pastor John Okinda again set course to finish the TrainingCenter building. The estimate was $12,633 to paint the exterior, install all remaining windows, and purchase the cement necessary to finish the floors throughout the two stories. These funds would not have been available were it not for the cancellation of our February trip. Therefore, COGO was able to send all the monies to finalize the MSOMI building! This is an awesome achievement made possible by our AWESOME GOD and the faithfulness of all you supporters, especially those of you who have been with us since 2000!
John’s remarks after an assessment of the TrainingCenter were: “This will bring the whole amount used to build this 2 storey building to Kshs.24,867,459 = in USD $414,458. We received these figures from the bank valuers who were here last month. We might have not used all these monies, but it is good to know the value of the work done so far in this great building! This is to say our Good Lord has provided. It is so amazing to see this happening here in Migori only in the last 7 years and mind you this does not include the pre-school and orphanage buildings.I must thank you for your commitment and making sure that the vision is accomplished. This is a great undertaking.It is my prayer that you and COGO will not withdraw from the Ministry in Migori and Kenya. I trust that we shall continue to work together for many years to come and your input will always be needed as we continue to work in this very vision. On my part, I promise to remain true to the vision and work everything in the fear of Him who gave us the vision; this is our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus. Now that the building is behind us, we now embark on the main agenda: training, training and training of ministers and any others whom the Lord will enable us to benefit.”
Now on the Bulgarian front, COGO sent $5000 in July to help complete the third floor of the Eagle Publishing House in Silistra, Bulgaria. This amount included roofing, flooring, doors, and windows, making room for what was coming. God’s increase is voiced by Pastor Niki Markov: “The publishing ministry is growing, and the printing shop is very busy. The Lord is blessing us with new responsibilities and work. We are expecting 2 big orders to print in Bulgarian 100,000 New Testaments and 10,000 Bibles for high schools and colleges. Without the new addition of the building that would be impossible.” The seed sent from this publishing house has opened many doors of ministry for Niki to carry the word of God throughout the whole of Bulgaria and even into Romania.
Though the year 2008 has been one of Elese and I being constrained to ministering spiritually in our stateside field, we look forward to again “cross over” to our brethren on foreign soil here in 2009. Invitations to Tanzania, Kenya, Haiti, etc. are prayerfully being considered. Again, we thank all of you who have supported us in prayer and finances as we have sought to touch the nations by His specific leading. May God cause all of us to know His will and prosper in fulfilling it throughout this year.
Dave & Elese “Construction-grove” …..You know who!
Here we are before another Christmas and close to the inauguration of another year in serving the purposes of our Lord. It has been a while since our last communiqué of April 2007 which gave you a glimpse of our February trip into Migori, Kenya composed of twelve brave souls. Many of the team had never been overseas before, and after a mere two weeks, they will all tell you of the special place in their hearts Kenya now holds. A lot has transpired since then and in the next few paragraphs we hope to catch you up on some of those happenings
In May, the first graduating class of MSOMI (Migori School of Ministry International) emerged in anticipation of their service to the Body of Christ. These students, most of whom were functioning as pastors already, have been faithful to complete the intensive three year program in biblical studies. Dr. Richard Forde (former president of Pinecrest Bible Training Center), his wife Joan, and author and Bible teacher, Penny Smith were guests of honor at the ceremony with Dr. Forde himself giving the commencement speech. These are his observations of the event: “The air was charged with excitement. Families came from distant places by trucks and buses to celebrate with their graduating pastors, sons, and daughters. I have never experienced such exuberance at any graduation. It was wonderful.” This is truly a dream, a vision come to life!
Now back to the continuing construction: In the weeks before and after graduation the outside plastering of the entire Training Center was completed! This was no small task as it was more than 15,000 square feet of work! However, a larger task was presented to us by gifted engineer, Rev. Scott Lowmaster, who accompanied us on our February trip. So, we now have before us a Three Phase Project to upgrade the present electrical, water, and septic system to adequately service all the campus facilities.
For those of you asking, “What campus facilities?”: What began in the year 2001 as simply building a 330 foot two-story training center on 2.25 acres is now an extensive campus that includes a 175 foot two-story orphanage, an eight hundred seat church, and a canning building. These additional structures built over the last couple years reflect an added burden that Bishop Okinda has in caring for his people. They came into being through the resources and support of other American and Canadian churches where John has invitation to speak.
With that being known, this October Elese and I were asked to go to Ohio for an historic first meeting with many of these churches hosted by Rev. Ron Silver. Even Bishop John Okinda himself was able to attend, as he was stateside at the time. This collective gathering of some sixteen people representing seven churches from three states and two countries became a consolidated effort for financing the Three Phase task mentioned above. More specifically, we will be installing an 800 Amp, 3 Phase electrical system, drilling a four hundred foot well and installing a multiple pump water distribution system utilizing various storage tanks, and installing a proper septic system. A small utility building will also be built to house the pump system, electrical panel, as well as various items to serve the entire complex. The total cost, estimated near $50,000, is being shared among us all, as the entire campus will benefit from this project, no matter what our personal project interest is. Lord willing, this coming February 2008 COGO will again land another team on Kenyan soil. This time we will oversee the initiation and completion of this campus project along with tackling further work specifically on the Training Center.
So, there you have the year in a nutshell – or should we say in a chestnut shell “…roasting on an open fire…?!” Anyone wanting to contribute to the Three Phase Project, please, send your donation to our COGO address with a note mentioning your desire. This is a large task, but “many hands make light work” and “in Him all things are possible”. Once again thank you all for your prayers and contributions for COGO and our personal family. May God bless you abundantly this holiday season and throughout the coming year.
Cheerily in Him,
Mr. and Mrs. Jack Frost Nipping
(David & Elese Cosgrove)
We’re excited to drop you this line concerning the events of our first return Kenya trip in over three years! Our team of twelve, representing three churches, took to the air on February 15th for a two-week hitch. From the get go, after a grueling two-day travel time in van, car, plane and bus, we hit the circuit preaching route doing crusades for seven nights straight in various parts of Migori Town. Of course, we had the great joy of seeing many respond to the call of Christ. Saturday we hosted an all-day all-out children and women’s conference. The following week, we paired up and scattered throughout the region for evening homegroups.
Our days were filled with several of our team assisting fundis (skilled masons) mortaring the inside face of the 330-foot Migori School of Ministry International (MSOMI). This was rigorous work of lifting, sifting, shoveling, throwing and mixing sand, water, cement and brick. At the same time, others lent a hand teaching primary school children within the MSOMI building, while a couple of us were continually bargaining for construction goods at the local Indian hardware store. One of our crew is a nurse who was able to work at a Migori hospital alongside the local medical staff and a visiting Australian doctor. One afternoon she headed two hours away into the bush to labor at a temporary clinic. On our final workday, we all painted the face of the MSOMI front office.
Our financial backing for the trip was significant and such a blessing since it allowed us to take care of all the labor and supplies (which included many doors and windows) for both weeks on the ground. Since we left Kenya over four weeks ago, funds have continued to come in and the work has moved to the outside face of the building. Seeing the roof and these other critical areas of the training center come to completion has been an inexpressible thrill. More than this, the first class of MSOMI ministers trained here will be graduating next month!
The last night of our stay in Migori our team was lavishly honored at a feast where we had the privilege of hearing the testimony of a local witch doctor that is now a student at MSOMI. Over a year ago he had been passing by our building in route to a village to kill a man. He carried his charms in a bag along with certain dismembered body parts that would be used in divinations for his victim’s demise. He had done this successfully for years. As he passed by he heard the prayers of the students within and felt compelled to enter and surrender his life to the Lord. His entrance startled the students who knew who he was. While expressing his need to be saved, he emptied his bag of charms on the ground where they immediately burst into flames. This sent the students into a scramble to contact Bishop John Okinda who was not there at that time. John promptly came and directed this man to a saving knowledge of Christ. He was filled with the Holy Spirit. His family’s salvation followed and his home was then purged of all the paraphernalia he had used for his sorceries. The national newspaper even picked up this story and billed it for a number of days.
Bishop Okinda stressed to me, “If for nothing else, this man’s salvation has made MSOMI worth building”. He will graduate next year.
Again, Elese and I want to express our great appreciation to all of you that have blessed us and the particular fields we are touching for Jesus Christ. To Him be all the glory and honor for enabling us by His grace to know His will and answer it! Stay tuned for more… and let us hear from you in the meantime!
The Caucasian Kenyans…Daudi & Elese “Calamity Jane” Cosgrove
PS: We are so thankful to the Lord for His divine protection. Four days after we returned from this trip, not even having caught our breath, I developed severe abdominal pains that proved to be appendicitis. I can’t imagine what may have been my scenario if we were still in Kenya or traveling at that time. -David
Testimony is always a good starting point for any share time. So it seemed good to us to convey what the Lord has recently done for our dear Bulgarian brethren who previously inhabited a third floor room in an obscure area of the city of Silistra. Their prayers that have been aimed at securing a vacant theatre in the city’s center square were met last month with the door opening for them to rent this 620-seat facility. The visibility to their community of over 55,000 will certainly be unmistakable when their evangelistic fervor and heart for disciples shows itself from this God-given platform. Happy hunting, brethren!
Bulgaria is barely off the heels of our late April trip where we hear Eagle Publishing House is soaring and sending its literature throughout Bulgaria and even into Romania. We now are setting our gaze again upon Kenya. In the last few weeks we were able to send over $8000 to Bishop John Okinda who is overseeing the completion of the Training Center’s roof as we speak:
“Am happy to report to you that the work has been going on very well, the masons have been laying bricks, some steel on the verandah, and pouring the verandah beam and finishing few pillars. I have made all the orders for the timber and the pre-painted iron sheets and by next week they shall deliver the same, am so happy to see this work on roofing in its final lap, thank you so much.”
At the same time, we have a group of ten or more brethren preparing for a February trip into Kenya to do finishing work on the Center and other projects in progress there. There will also be ample opportunity for all other ministry gifts and talents to touch this work.
“Am planning a leaders conference here and both you and Pastor Scott will be ministering and any other on your team, in this I know you had mentioned kids ministry, builders are also coming? Can we build a village church? or a community projects like schools? Please kindly fill me in if you can, I wanted you to meet with the bible school students since we are closing in two day's time. I wanted to ask them to come back when you guys are here so that you may be able to teach for at least a week.” - Bishop John Okinda
Finally, with returning to Kenya for the first time in 3 years, we are hoping to be present with more than the strength of our physical and spiritual labor. Supplies are needed to plaster and paint walls. Beds, blankets, desks, etc, are all needed for the Center to really be what it is meant to be. Please consider before the Lord, giving a generous contribution to this work that is already touching a number of countries. Even more than this is the touch it will have on generations to come. As servants and stewards with you in this vision, Elese and I will take in all finances that are sent before our February departure and apply it to the work while there.
To all of you who have given so faithfully, diversely, and extravagantly, may you be blessed in ways that can only be defined as from “the riches of His glory.” Please let us hear from you. Ubarikiwe Na Bwana! (May God bless you!)
Kwaheri and Merry Christmas!
Dave & Elese Clausgrove
Hello everyone! This is a summer greeting from the lost and found family files of the Cross Over Cosgroves. Those of you who have been thinking to use forensics to find us, forget it! We have been down and out with our computer for more than a month. Our screen going black was only the beginning of woes that left us way out of touch with all of you. However, we are back with our pieced together PC and talking turkey.
With a sense of change in the seasons beginning some months ago, our nose in the wind found the Lord leading us out from the gracious housing provision we have enjoyed for five years with the Cook family. Mike and Jackie Cook, who have such a heart for the Lord, His Kingdom and missions, have provided us shelter, hospitality and support beyond measure. They have so freely assisted us in being able to carry on the transactions we have had in over three countries. Sincerely, their reward is with the Lord as one that we could never repay. Blessings to you for all you’ve done for the cause of Christ and us.
With saying all of this, our family has landed an above ground home in the Big Flats area of New York near the regional airport! Much updating and construction has only recently allowed us to move in, but we are excited at the prospect of its use and the new season the Lord has us in.
On the field side of things, our Bulgarian brethren are making ground with having used the monies we raised to purchase the printing press, extend the building outward for its placement and upward as a temporary second floor, four-room apartment. This apartment will be living quarters for visiting ministries until it is converted into the original intention meant for it - a Christian radio station. We have also just finished editing our camera work from the April-May Bulgarian trip (thanks to my son, Jay). Its DVD formatting will be completed soon for your viewing as well. Just write us requesting this 8-minute clip of testimony, thanksgiving and time well spent there.
To close out, Elese and I want to thank those of you who have continued to support us even through our more recent migration and computer glitch. We have not dropped the ball and are even looking tentatively into a team-trip to Kenya in January to see the roof finished on the Training Center. In my latest email from Bishop John Okinda:
“The good news is that the Bible college is going on now with new students coming in for their first year, and our senior class is graduating in May next year! I will be so happy if we can finish the roof and start the general finishing. Thank you for your wonderful concern. Please consider being our guest speaker in our first graduation! Please pray about it, it will be wonderful if you can make it. Thank you.” Bishop John Okinda
With every intent to keep up with you sooner than this last time,
Your belated brethren, Dave & Elese Cosgrove
Back at you with being back with you from Bulgaria! Our team time together on the ground in Silistra was wonderful. Apart from watching the Danube River overflowing its banks, breaking its 111-year record, we all experienced a different level to the flow of the Lord, which connected us more personally to our Bulgarian brethren. We had many confirming words before we left that the greatest impact would not be from big meetings or preachings, but in a relational, less obvious way. Our intermingling on an individual level would have a solidifying effect like cement being strategically placed with a trowel between stones or a digging below the frost line to form a solid foundation.
After a grueling 29-hour trip from Corning, NY to Silistra, Bulgaria, our eight-man team was broken up into four separate housing situations. Some of us were placed with Bulgarian brethren that spoke little to no English! That fearful barrier, for even seasoned travelers, became just one avenue for lasting relationships to be formed. Through creative personal exchanges, the Holy Spirit communicated beyond earthly words resulting in many tearful good-byes. Our espousal in assisting this Bulgarian vision has made for a marriage that is more than just our labor together.
One extremely noteworthy service among the many we did, was an evangelistic meeting in an outlying village. It had been announced in advance and was held in an old communist hall. Lots of lively worship music was played and then two short evangelistic words were interwoven before an invitation was given to receive Christ. All forty-five villagers who came out raised their hands to be born-again! A new church was birthed that evening and a faithful brother from the church in Silistra was consigned to this new work.
Our original hope to do construction work on the publishing house never materialized. Red tape would only allow us to dig the foundation and then we were told the flood conditions had made the soil too wet to work. BUT, the printing press was purchased and transported from Sofia while we were there. It is a 3000-pound beauty that took nine men four hours to just move from the truck some twenty feet into the publishing house! The press is three times the size of the former one and will be able to do colors, book covers, large posters, raised print and much more.
Last off, Pastor Niki Markov sends his most grateful appreciations to all those who have contributed to the Bulgarian Project in prayer and finance. His most recent email says:
It was a great blessing for all of us to have you. We look forward to seeing you back to Bulgaria. Things here are well, the Danube River got lower by one foot. The church is well. This week we will print in color on the new printing press. Please, say HI to everyone for us. May God bless you and keep you. Because of HIM: Niki
Ciao (“Chow” – Bulgarian Good-bye!) Boris and Natasha Cosgrovkov
The long awaited is a reality! This Thursday, April 13th, is take-off time for Bulgaria. Tickets are purchased, plans are set and all is in motion for a team of eight of us to join our Bulgarian brethren. The first leg of construction will commence on the Eagle Publishing House in Silistra where the new printing press will be installed. The eventual Christian radio station will follow this labor on the same ground. We are thrilled to be a part of the ministry going on there and GREATLY appreciate the contributions given by many of you to make this work possible. Over $8000 has come in for the construction and the new press. This will see the first-leg of this communications vision through to completion. At the same time, we are looking forward to having both Palm and Easter Sunday in Bulgaria (they use the orthodox church calendar – one week after ours) and providing something of the spiritual nourishment in keeping with those days.
For any of you unacquainted with Bulgaria, here’s some history from WEC International: From 1947-1989 Bulgaria had been under severe communist rule with Christians being imprisoned, killed and persecuted continually. In 1990 a multi-party democracy was instituted, however, there has been a see-saw struggle for power since then between Democrats and Socialists (ex-Communist Party) and only since 1997 has genuine democratic reform taken place.
Over the years, some Orthodox Church leaders have orchestrated dangerous media campaigns against non-Orthodox, and particularly Evangelicals. Accusations of cannibalism, extremism, links with crime and destruction of culture have been made with no rebuttal allowed. This led to violence by neo-Nazi gangs and government restrictions placed on non-Orthodox religious groups. Over 240 organizations have thus been banned. This has slowed open evangelism, but, drawn many evangelicals together building trust between the major Christian bodies. At the same time, the Orthodox Church has fractured into three denominations over political and leadership power struggles. Its corruption, compromise, and cycle of schism have also created an increased openness among many for a personal relationship with Christ.
In the overall, the pressures of the 1990’s have caused an accelerated growth and maturity among evangelical denominations. However, the Church still remains in need of a clear vision for multiplying churches and plurality of leadership where networking and loving communications would displace the former tendency toward dictatorial central leadership that oppresses. Pray for the Church of Bulgaria that is poised to play a significant part in the reconstruction of the country where 50% live below the poverty line, abortions exceed the number of births, and hope for the future is rare. Pray for us as we go in His graces to play our own part with our Bulgarian brethren. Blessings.
Your Cross-Cultural Brethren, Boris & Natasha Cosgrove (A.K.A. Dave & Elese)
“Since November I have been working on putting up the roof of the first half of the Training Center. I have good news, the first half is done with blue Iron sheets, am left with a small debt on Iron sheets and timber amounting to US$ 1800. To do this half it cost me US$ 7,260.
This is good news, for I now only have a half of the building to finish the entire roof, then I will only be concerned about fittings, furnishings and other necessary finishings. God is so good to me! I want to thank you for your support. May the Lord richly bless you. Thank God yet again for His Goodness!”
Yours in Him, Bishop John Okinda
This is not an illusion! We are shifting gears. The long awaited roof of the Migori School of Ministry International (MSOMI) is half up and begging for completion. If you’ve wearied in well doing over these rafters, take a deep breath on this recent excerpt and give us another faith-bent exhale toward the last lap. Also, if John’s $1800 debt comes to mind under the Lord’s inspiration, checks may still be sent to COGO (at the above) address earmarked “Kenya Roof”.
At the same time, the Bulgarian front is in full swing as well. The below letter gives you a gist of the advance being made there to house Eagle Publishing’s new printing press and the eventual Christian radio station. Alongside of their efforts, from our side of the tracks, we have been preparing some new missionary recruits for an April touchdown in Bulgaria. Our hope in the Lord is that this trip will actually materialize, since a recent opportunity to take a team into Haiti was postponed. The US State Department travelers’ advisory shows Haiti to presently have the highest kidnappings (ten per day) in the western hemisphere. Bulgaria is now a prayerful diversion that has the “welcome” of Pastor Yanko.
“I am sorry for not replying to you right away, but I was very busy and did not check my emails. I have all the permissions to start building the first floor. I paid over $1700 USD to start the project. In order to build the first floor it will cost about $4000 USD for materials. It will be over 100 square meters. We are well and the church is well. I am also a student of English and Bulgarian philosophy right now. We had begun a Bible school in our church some time ago so I have been teaching every Tuesday evening from 6-8 p.m. Over 25 people are coming. Pastor Yanko said that you are more than welcome to come (14 -24 of April). At that time there will be no other missionaries here. On 17 th of January Rossi gave birth to a baby girl. Her name is Moriah. We are very happy and blessed. The Lord is faithful as always.”
Because of HIM – Niki Markov
Once again, Elese and I would like to express our appreciation to you all for coming alongside these precious overseas brethren and us. We are hearing prophetically that 2006 will be a year of great shiftings and restructuring within God’s Kingdom and His promised fruitfulness becoming realized and seen. Amen! We have a real sense for that ourselves with more coming!
With “Getting to Know You”, Anna & The King (A great flick that stripped his gears!) a.k.a. Dave & Elese Cosgrove
Well, this wintry writing is coming to all of you on the tail of two weeks of home hospitalities we recently spent with Pastor Allan Udoma and Bishop John & Pamela Okinda from Kenya. Interestingly, these brethren who both come from Migori, Kenya showed up at our home separately and consecutively, one week after the other from October 31st to November 14th.
Pastor Udoma, who previously was the assistant to Bishop Okinda, is now the senior pastor of Migori PEFA Church in Migori, Kenya. His coming to the USA was on the gracious invite of an American anesthesiologist in Alabama who recognized Allan’s anointed teaching gift while involved with the building of an orphanage on the outskirts of Migori. Allan’s coming was a miraculous surprise to us. We know how difficult it is to for Kenyans to obtain an American visa, let alone have the money needed to come here. Detroit airport obviously felt the same since their security personnel held Pastor Udoma and a traveling companion beyond their connecting flight time for traveling with only $3.00 between the two of them! Suspiciously God! Pastor Allan’s limited stay and ministry to us was a courtesy lend by our dear southern brother who brought him Stateside to raise awareness and funding for the Mirindi orphanage. We were immensely blessed and pray for the same blessing to be upon his work with the orphans in Kenya.
Bishop John and Pamela Okinda’s visit was highlighted by a COGO reception at the home of Dorothy Owen. Elese and I were elated to see such a great turn out of supporters for COGO and the Kenya Project. Under Dorothy’s anointing, the food served was close to a third-heaven experience. In three and a half hours of fellowship, everyone had the opportunity to either meet the Okindas for the first time or become reacquainted after their two-year absence from our part of the world. John’s ministry on Sunday morning at Glad Tidings was wonderfully anointed and brought in another $1000 to add to the $3000 stored against constructing the roof of the Training Center in Kenya. Only $11,000 to go… The below letter is an excerpt of John’s just prior to his coming.
“The Lord has been so good to Pamela and I, the churches, and the community developments of which I am part. My heart has been so heavy over our project on the ground not finished; the two- story Training Center. This is where we started to train church ministers across the region. As I write we are just in recess for a few weeks before the students return. In two years we have 50 students bringing them from both Kenya and Tanzania. My humble cry to the Lord is for Him to provide me with US $15,000 to finish the entire roofing work! This will provide more facility for expanding the training over here. Going on in the same building is a Children's pre-school; this is where we are giving quality education to the less privileged. I have been praying to visit at least 3 churches to fundraise for these projects, am writing to ask you to continue to pray with me over the project.”
This sincere assessment of the project in Kenya needs a last stretch effort that will make the complete Center operational. If any of you or the churches you are affiliated with could assist in answering the financial closure of this project with even a one-time offering, we would be exceedingly grateful. Elese and I would certainly be more than glad to come and share the weight and reach of this vision that is functioning, but not finished.
We remain in pursuit of foundation monies that will aid the supplies needed inside the Training Center. We have acquired a new contact on the ground in Kenya that we hope will visit Bishop Okinda and view the Project site. T’s are crossed, i’s dotted from our side, but in the final analysis, all is in the Lord’s hands urged by our prayers. We appreciate your prayers, too!
Holiday cheers to all of you and God bless you for your continued generous support!
Clark (a.k.a.“Sparky”) & Ellen Griswold Cosgrove
Well, here’s knowing you again with a COGO recap of our September-October 2005 developments. We trust our being out of your mail-sight (site) hasn’t put us out of your mind as well. Anyway, give us a read and try not to go dyslexic on us even if we are a little “backwoods”, or is that…“backwards”?!
August peaked at its close with Elese and I having a wonderful time in Montreal, Quebec ministering at a conference of Africans from Kenya, Burundi, Congo, Rwanda and Tanzania. The worship team was “Krystal” (www.krystal.com), three brothers who are former refugees from Congo. They brought the presence of the Lord in with a fury. This made it easy to bring the Word and see the Lord’s faithfulness thereafter draw men to Himself. We believe the lives touched in Montreal will bear fruit to His glory.
The three brothers mentioned were hardly alone in their testimony of escape from the tyranny of Congo’s government some five years ago. We had the privilege of fellowship with many others attending the conference that lost loved ones in their flight from Rwanda and Burundi. Their history, humility, and commitment toward the Lord stunned our own faith. There is a higher dream to be realized than the American dream brethren, ay? Live the right one!
September had us posted here doing local ministry, one being the annual ACTS (Area Christians Together in Service) Breakfast. There was a good crowd of brethren that came together with eight to ten congregations represented. Elese and I were blessed to be able to share our vision, progress made over the last four years, and some personal storylines regarding family and our close encounters of the God-kind. Thanks ACTS, for both the invite and support of COGO!
With all that has been going forward, our push in late September for a designated trip to Bulgaria in early October was backlogged thrice. Glad Tidings Christian Life Church (where we serve) asked for us to hold our Bulgaria trip until after October 19th to meet with Pastor Lucien Almanord from Haiti. (Plans are now in the works for us to take a local GT team into Haiti come early ’06). We then were delayed again as we heard from Pastor Allan Udoma and Bishop John Okinda of Migori, Kenya. They both lead separate churches from the two far ends of Migori and are both requesting to see us in the States between mid-October and mid-November! John, who is at the helm of the Training Center Project in Kenya, will be staying with Elese and I from Nov. 10-14th and ministering at Glad Tidings, Sunday, Nov. 13th. Pastor Allan’s arrival date is still undetermined. A COGO reception with John Okinda will be held at Dorothy Owen’s home on Friday Nov. 11th starting at 6:30pm for all supporters. Please check out the invitation.
Needless to say, there is no time left in 2005 for a Bulgaria trip since the high airfare holiday season will be upon us. November 20th we have another date with Agape Fellowship in Harrisburg, PA. So, it seems this fall the foreign field decided to come to us instead and we are divinely de-railed at this time for traveling! “O the ways of God that are above knowing.” However, all is never lost, forgotten, or mis-directed in the Lord. A recent email from Niki Markov in Bulgaria conveyed this message:
Hello Pastor Dave. It was good to hear from you. You can come at any time. Pastor Yanko and I will be to a leaders conference 4-6 of October and after that we will be here. So any dates after that are good. Pastor Yanko said to pack your luggage for 5 years to stay here and if you like it you can stay 10 more years. Well, God bless you and keep you and look forward to seeing you soon. … Niki
These guys are either funny or scary, ay? Our consolation is, “To everything there is a time and a season and…He has made everything beautiful in its time.” Thanks for these few moments together. We love and appreciate all of you. Stay in touch.
Back to our future… Dave and Elese McFly
Greetings everyone! Here we are again with some overseas assessments from our stateside seating. Don’t be concerned, these seats are still ringside and “our grasp has not exceeded our reach” as Oswald Chambers would say. God is moving and so are we.
Since we last spoke to you in March, Elese and I enjoyed the Lord’s favor taking us to an African church in Boston. The worship was in Swahili and I again had to revert to segmented thinking to speak through an interpreter. The congregation was comprised of some wonderful saints from Tanzania, Kenya and Congo. Of course, we found ourselves pleasantly disoriented and needed to sporadically look out the window to be certain we were still in the States. Having received the finest of hospitalities and an extravagant offering to add to the Kenya Project, we also seemed to have regained our African status. Pastor Jared Mlongecha wrote us a very flattering report:
“I was so amazed in the way that you connect with Africans!!! You deserve to be called true “African albinos". Our people here felt that you are one of them. I have no doubt in my spirit that you will soon be going back to Africa. I'm now starting to feel that God has connected us together for a reason. We are planning for you to come for a longer trip. I hope you will take time out of your busy schedule so that you may come and share the burden you have with the other African churches in Boston.”
Following this trip, we were contacted by Bishop John Okinda (of the Migori Worship Center in Kenya) who had suddenly come to the USA at the request and fare of a church in Ohio. Geoff and Theresa Pollack along with Elese and I met with John in Salisbury Center, NY where we exchanged some good fellowship over the progress of the Migori School of Ministry International (MSOMI – means “learned one” in Swahili). We encapsulated John’s sharing on tape for a further video update while acquiring some onsite photos from him. At the same time, COGO was able to give Bishop John Okinda nearly $2000 toward the Kenya Project. The pastors who began classes in September ’04 at MSOMI are finishing their 1st year and moving ahead, while a 2nd group will be simultaneously starting up – all in spite of the unfinished facility.
MSOMI (spliced pic)
Just recently we also heard from Pastor Paul Vasilets, president of the Rivne Spiritual Seminary and Academy in the Ukraine. A previously frozen account that hindered a past money transfer of ours was just defrosted! COGO was finally able to successfully send to the Ukraine approximately $2600 to purchase 2-3 mission facilities.
Elese and I want to extend our deepest appreciation to those of you who have stuck by us in prayer and financial support to see God’s Kingdom increase in these countries and beyond. Right now, we are only $1500 away from the purchase price of the printing press needed for the Eagle Publishing House in Silistra, Bulgaria; $1200 more will meet the cost of the radio broadcasting kit. And back to MSOMI, we continue to believe the Lord for the increase of support that will put the roof on it and windows, doors, plumbing, plaster, and lighting in it. We are always looking for our own windows and doors of opportunity to share these visions and network with the Body of Christ. Please consider making one of these works and us, a part of your outreach. Help us go the distance with finishing the last round.
-The Sugar Ray Cosgroves