Dear Friends and Supporters,
As I prepared to write this letter, my thoughts were, “What one word describes our ministry best?” I came up with the one word “unique.” Throughout these years I have often stated that SWM is a “unique” ministry. The word “unique” dates back to the 17th century and it is defined as — “used to say that something or someone is unlike anything or anyone else: very special or unusual: belonging to or connected with only one particular thing, place, or person: being the only one of its kind: unlike anything else: different than others.” Please understand that we are not proudly boasting that we are “unique,” but humbly stating that we are “unique” in our unusual God-called ministry.
Many times I jokingly say, “We are not great; it’s just that we do not have any competition.” In all of these years I simply do not know of any other one ministry that does what we do. It seems that there are very few hearing people who minister to Deaf people. It requires learning another language and culture. Also, deaf people are overlooked, not thought of, neglected, or unreached by the majority of churches. There are still many areas where Deaf people cannot attend church because there are no interpreters or deaf leaders. Hearing people have many choices for church, but the Deaf do not. How many deaf churches/ministries are in your area? I have viewed major Christian newspapers with church ads and noticed the absence of “Services Interpreted for the Deaf.” In America the deaf ministry is still a “frontier” ministry, and it is even more so in foreign countries. So SWM is not great; it is just that we are “unique.” We are “unique” because God placed us in this “unique” ministry. It is “His” unique ministry!
SWM is “unique” in that we specialize in deaf ministry. SWM is “unique” in that it is an extension of the local church to teach and train both deaf and hearing people in all areas of the deaf ministry. Most deaf ministries have “lay” people who know Sign Language but do not know how to build ministries. We are “here” to help and serve them.
SWM is “unique” in that it prints Bible literature, free tracts, lessons, manuals, Sign Language materials, and materials to spiritually help deaf and deaf ministries. SWM is “unique” as it produces many videos in voice and signs. SWM is “unique” in that over 1,000 deaf are enrolled in our free Deaf Bible Institute. SWM is unique with a Teaching & Training Bible Institute in voice and signs. SWM is “unique” in its “outreach ministry” (Director: Jim Bracelin) that is reaching and teaching the deaf worldwide via Internet ministries in Signs and Voice. SWM is “unique” as it has the only free Christian newspaper for deaf people and deaf ministries. SWM is unique because it has a Mission Board (Director: Jon Barr) and SWM International (Director: David Bennett). SWM missions now has 14 missionary families “specializing” in reaching the Deaf worldwide – missionaries who know sign language and understand deaf culture. SWM is also “unique” in that each missionary has been called to fulfill the Great Commission, especially to the Deaf world.
SWM is “unique” as most of our supporters and friends also share in our “unique” burden to reach the Deaf for Christ. Many of you do not know sign language, but the Lord has touched your hearts to support and send SWM to go in your place to the Deaf world. Thank you for your support! Many, many Deaf will hear in Heaven because of you. You are You-nique because you have made our ministry possible these many years. SWM is “unique” because it has been faithful to the one calling received in 1966 to “Tell the Deaf more about Jesus.” As Paul was “unique” in his calling to the Gentiles, we also feel we are “unique” in our calling to the Deaf. We have just tried to be faithful to our “unique” calling. We are still amazed that God can use ordinary people to do extraordinary things.
In “His” Name,
Ted Camp, Founder
“Helping Churches Fulfill the Great Commission to the Deaf World”
Countries Our Ministry and Missionaries Have Served
USA/Guam – Mozambique – Canada – Philippines – Bahamas – China – Puerto Rico – Peru – Virgin Islands – Belize – Cuba India – Brazil – South Africa – Romania – Trinidad – Turks & Caicos Islands – St. Lucia Island – St. Kitts Island – Guatemala Mexico – Bolivia – Ukraine – Australia – Gabon – Ghana – Cameroon – Nepal – Haiti and New Zealand
Jon and Diane Barr report very good Fantastic Saturdays in Missouri and Wisconsin. In both, the attendance and the number of deaf people were more than previous years. One salvation decision and many other decisions were made. The Barrs also had meetings in a new deaf church in Ohio and in two hearing churches in West Virginia.
David and Vicki Bennett thank the Lord that revival broke out in a church in Richmond as the Holy Spirit moved after David preached on winning the lost to Jesus Christ. The pastor and several people of the church now have a burden for Deaf people and they have been witnessing for Christ.
Jim and Terry Bracelin thank the Lord for the great time of fellowship and edification at the SWM Missions Retreat in August. They are excited also about the video ministry that is reaching far beyond their physical capabilities. (You can view this on YouTube; search for Jim Bracelin.) Also, Jim continues to have a very fruitful ministry in local prisons.
Allen Snare thanks the Lord that the dizziness he experienced appears to be only from dehydration. The doctor said all the tests showed him to be healthy; he just needs to drink more water!
Paul and Rachel Strosnider had opportunity to report about their ministry to a Deaf church in Georgia. They also give praise for Rhonda’s salvation decision in Junior Church, and for Lamont leading one of his friends to the Lord on videophone!
Bruce and Amanda Stuart praise the Lord for opening doors and working in hearts concerning the need in Gabon. Although they planned to go to Alabama, God re-directed to the St. Louis area. There they had wonderful services, and three new churches promised support! They also presented their ministry in Chattanooga and Gray, Tennessee.
Drew and Melinda Wright are excited that two churches have officially taken them on for support! They also recently found out that baby #3 is a boy. Please pray for continued good health during Melinda’s pregnancy.
Jon and Diane Barr ask your prayers for upcoming fall Fantastic Saturdays in Washington, Ohio, and Virginia. Pray for them also as they present Deaf mission work to students at a Christian college. Also, please pray for the video project “Creation to Christ… for Minimal Language Deaf.” Wisdom is needed for David Bennett as he visually presents the Gospel clearly, Jon as he directs and films it, and others as they edit and produce it.
David and Vicki Bennett ask you to pray for their planned mission trip to Brazil in November. David will preach a prophecy conference in a Deaf church and will teach on spiritual gifts in another church. Donations can be sent to SWM, designated “Bennett – Mission Trip.” Please pray also for Jason and Charity (daughter) Rishel and Eric and Rebekah (daughter) Elrod as they raise missionary support – the Rishels to Burkina-Faso and the Elrods to India.
Jim and Terry Bracelin request prayer for the coming together of all the last-minute details for the Deaf Ladies Retreat in October. Terry and Valley Forge Baptist are hosting the retreat. They also have a Missions Conference (in Pennsylvania) and two Fantastic Saturdays (in Michigan and Pennsylvania) in October.
Reed and Donna Condra request prayer for Donna’s sister, Deb, as her husband recently passed away. Pray also for Deb’s declining health.
Paul and Rachel Strosnider ask prayer for wisdom for buying church property in the next 1-2 years. Pray also for faithful families so the church will become self-supporting.
Bruce and Amanda Stuart are praying for more meetings in October. Please pray for God to lead them to the churches where He would have them present. Pray also for the designer working on their letterhead and brochures, and for the necessary funds ($500) to print them. Donations can be sent to SWM, designated “Stuart – Missions Project.”
Drew and Melinda Wright ask your prayers as they continue moving forward with deputation. Their survey trip to England has been re-scheduled for the spring of 2016. Please pray for open doors of opportunity for that trip and for the additional $3,400 needed. Donations can be made to SWM, designated, “Wright – Missions Trip.”
SWM International is hosting a missions trip to the 2016
Deaf Nation World Expo in Las Vegas next summer. Please pray for wisdom in planning that trip and for those on the team to have a burden for people and the courage to reach out to them with the Gospel.
For IRS and Tax-deductible Purposes
All support or gifts should be made to Silent Word Ministries or SWM. Then designate “For.……….”