Thursday, February 5, 2009


Just wanted to let everyone know that I made it home safe and sound last night (Wednesday) around 11:00 pm.

You can see more pictures and read Pastor Ude's blog at:

Thanks for all your prayers and support! The Lord is Good!

In Christ,
Pastor Ohlmann

Monday, February 2, 2009

Grueling, Amazing, Humbling, Incredible days in the Himalayas

The past four days have been extremely grueling (for an over weight, out of shape 40 year old anyway) but at the same time some of the most rewarding and incredible days I have ever spent in a foreign mission field. I already know that I will not be able to find the words to fully describe what the Lord has accomplished.

Let me give you the quick summary first…we got up at 3:30 am on Friday morning because we needed to get to a 5:00 am bus in downtown Kathmandu. We finally got on the bus just before 7:00 and we were on the road. Nine hours later we arrived in Dhunche, a small town in the Rawsua district of Nepal that is north and bit west of Kathmandu. This is where we were to meet the young evangelist Dawa Tamang, who is in need of further training. He hopped on the bus and we rode another 2 hours to a small village named Goljung, with nothing more than a small house and a trekker’s lodge that is under construction. The trekking path led north out of this village toward the base camp of Mount Langtang. We went the opposite way on a path that the locals Tamang people use to get to their villages that are scattered across the surrounding mountainsides. We were told that this way to the village was a bit longer but much easier to travel. After a bowl of warm noodle soup (Ramen noodles) we walked, climbed, hiked, etc from 7:00 pm until we arrived at a Tamang village called Nesing. We woke early to an amazing view of Langtang Mountain. With the sun shining on the beautiful snow covered peaks it was a sight to behold. We got cleaned up, ate some chocolates, biscuits, and tea for breakfast and went out to explore the village. Church was supposed to begin at 10:00 am but the tribal people do not function well with schedules. It’s just not part of their way of life. On a typical Saturday (worship day in Nepal) the pastor will start gathering people from their homes around 11:00 am and then when he has enough to begin singing they start. As the others in the village hear the singing they begin to finish up whatever they are working on and then they make their way to the church. On this particular day things really got started around 12:00 noon. We were supposed to hit the trail by 1:30 or 2:00 since it was to be a seven-hour trek back to Dhunche. I didn’t start preaching until after 1:00 pm. Matt followed me with a short devotion rather than a full sermon because of the time. When all was said and done and a meal was served, it was 3:30 pm before we began the long trek back to the city of Dhunche where we would catch the bus back to Kathmandu early Sunday morning. The trek took us on a 2-hour trip down step trails to the bottom of the mountain where we crossed the river on a very high suspension walking bridge. Then it was a 5-hour trek straight up the mountain where we finally (and I mean finally) climbed onto the road that led into Dhunche. After the five-minute walk on the road we checked into a local guesthouse for trekker’s. We woke early and got on the 8:00 am bus for an 8-hour ride back to Kathmandu. That was the quick summary…now let me break it down with a little more detail.

The Bus Ride – I have ridden buses in India before and once before in Nepal but never before have I had an experience like this, mostly because I have never ridden a bus this far before. Early in the morning we simply followed Raju, Rajan, and Soumeet (a young man from the congregation who is able to speak the tribal language) to the appropriate bus. To begin with things were not to crowded. But with each stop, and there were lots of stops, more people and more packages, baggage, and various bags of rice, grain, produce etc were loaded on to the top of the bus and down the middle aisle to the point where there people were literally wedged into the bus, standing and sitting down the center aisle. There was even a large plastic container (about 10 gallons) filled with some sort of raw meat sitting in the middle of the aisle with a lid that did not fit tight. (it did not smell good) The top of the bus was also filled with people and stuff. I counted at least 5 people with their heads hanging out the window or in a bag or in their own caps vomiting throughout the trip. And I could only see the front half of the bus since I was sitting near the middle. The first half of the trip was on a paved, one lane, road straight up into the mountains. Imagine the scariest road you have driven on in the mountains in the U.S. and then take away all the guard rails, make it about a fourth as wide and fill it with constant pot holes and washouts that have been temporarily fixed with gravel and large crushed rock and you come close to picturing the good portions of this road. The first half of the trip took us to the city of Trisuli. After this point the roads got much worse since there was no more pavement. We were originally told that we would be getting off in Dhunche but when we arrived the evangelist Dawa, from Nesing (the Tamang tribal village we were to visit) said it would be better to travel on to a small village named Goljung since the trek from there would be shorter and not as difficult at night.
The Trek to and from the Tamang village of Nesing – It is probably good that I did not know how difficult the trek to Nesing would be or I am quite sure I would not have gone. After only a few hours of sleep, a night of diarrhea, and then an 11-hour bus ride, my body was not in shape to do much of anything, let alone trek into the Himalayan Mountains. By the time I finally realized that this was no place for an over-weight, out-of-shape 40 year old it was too late and I had no other option that to keep plodding along. At one point, my legs were so cramped that I simply fell down and we rested there for about 20 minutes before continuing on. The trek took us four hours and the last hour and a half seemed to be virtually straight up, climbing crude stairs made of rocks and boulders of various size and shape. It is amazing to think that these same trails have been leading the Tamang people from village to village for thousands of years. We walked through several small villages and a Buddhist monastery as we went. I wish it had been daytime so I could have seen everything. I can’t even describe the joy and relief I felt when we walked into the village and I was told that we had made it. But at the same time, I was filled with dread at the thought of making the trek back out the next day after our worship service. Since the bus does not start from the same place where we got off we had to trek back to the bigger city of Dhunche which required a 2 hour trek down one mountain and 5 1/2 hours back up another mountain.

Our trek back to Dhunche began at 3:30 pm rather than 1:00 pm as we had planned. The first two hours were a constant down hill trek, which was very taxing on muscles that seldom get used and also made for some nice blisters on the front of my big toes. When we got near the bottom we stopped at a very small village with just two or three houses and a sort of guesthouse where you could get some boiled water, tea, and biscuits. We stopped there for about 45 minutes. Then it was another 15 minutes to the river. The high bridge that was suspended over the river was a relief because it was level. The next four hours were a steady ascent, sometimes gradual but mostly quite steep again on “stairs” made of various rocks and boulders. Unfortunately, I have a rather large ego that hates to show any kind of weakness, but on this night I had no other choice. While the others were able to keep trekking, my out-of-shape, weak legged, and over-weight body just had to take frequent breaks. My legs went from burning to wobbly to just no feeling at all. It was as if my legs were just moving one small step at a time on sheer will. I began to think that it was just bones and tendons keeping me upright and moving because my muscles were spent. At times I was seriously concerned that my legs would simply give out and I would tumble down the steep mountain. The Lord was there with me through the trek and gave me what I needed. I just kept praying and reciting the 23rd psalm over and over. When we finally climbed up out of the woods and on to the road that would lead us to the city of Dhunche with just five more minutes of walking I was filled with joy and relief. As we walked those last five minutes Rajan and Raju and the other Nepalis came up and patted me on the back congratulating me for making it. They had all been very concerned and even offered to carry me, in some way, if necessary. Physically, I was spent and then suddenly a deep sense of appreciation came over me as I realized that this was not my accomplishment but rather it was the Lord who carried me along. Then I began to realize the extraordinary level of patience and Christian love that these young men had shown to me. This seven hour trek that I had just “endured” typically takes these boys just a few hours to complete and they do it every day, twice a day as they come and go to school in Dhunche. Incredible! It was at the edge of the city where the Lord led me to see that these young men had been much more patient with me than I had with them. I had Raju thank them and explain to them how grateful I was for their concern, patience, and Christian love. They responded that they were so thankful we had come and were glad that I had made the trek so that maybe one day I would be able to come again because they needed so much more teaching from the Bible. Humbling!
These three days were so full of new experiences. I don’t think I will ever forget the beauty of this place high up in the Himalayas and the beautiful view of Langtang Mountain. The people were also incredible. I can’t wait to get online when I get home and learn more about the Tamang people of northern Nepal. As we walked we came across many of the Tamang just doing their daily work of carrying large, or better yet huge, bundles of hay, straw, firewood, etc on their backs. Large portions of the mountain-side have been terraced into farmland and they grow everything from millet, to corn, to rice, to cabbage, onions, potatoes, you name it they seem to grow it in the most difficult of places. And you also see mountain cattle and goats all over the place with short, sturdy, little women driving them up or down the mountain. These people may be short in stature but have strength and endurance that is unbelievable. A grueling day for me is nothing more than a typical day for them.

The Gospel Comes to Nesing – The young man who is working as an evangelist in the Tamang village of Nesing is a pretty incredible story of how God calls, gathers, and enlightens His chosen. Dawa Tamang (of the Tamang tribal people of Nepal) is his name. He was born and raised in the very small, desolate, and secluded village of Nesing. But like many a young man, he thought that the grass must be greener elsewhere. So he headed to Dhunche the largest city in the Rasua area. In Dhunche, Dawa had a bit more education and found a job. It was there in Dhunche where he met a pastor. This pastor had been a friend with the JB Bhitrokoti for many years from the time when they were both converted to Christianity in another part of Nepal. When JB moved to Kathmandu this pastor went to the Rasua area to spread the Gospel. It was there that Dawa first heard the Gospel. He then began to assist this pastor and learned as much as he possibly could about the Bible. As the years went on, the pastor took Dawa with him to Kathmandu several times and it was there that he met the Bhitrokoti family. A few years ago the pastor had some sort of illicit affair with a woman in Dhunche and has since left the area and because of the disgrace of the incident he feels he is no longer welcome to return. It was shortly after this happened that Dawa came to Kathmandu to tell the JB what had happened and to ask for his help in becoming a pastor so he could continue the Gospel ministry in the Rawsua area. A few years ago Dawa decided he needed to return to his home village and share the Gospel there. As he began to spread the Gospel many were called out of the darkness of their local religion that is derived from pre-Buddhist teachings of Tibet where it is assumed that this Tamang tribe migrated from more than a thousand years ago. Dawa’s father (if I;ve got the story straight) is the village elder and when he was converted most of the village followed. I counted roughly 140 in the worship service we were at. As usual, there were far more women and children than men. It was quite interesting to see them all dressed in their very unique tribal clothing and hats. Obviously, their culture is much different than ours. But one thing that was very trying of our patience was their constant chatting while we were preaching. After the worship service Raju made a comment about this and explained that these people just are not civilized like others and they have never been in situations where they are expected to sit and listen. In their culture, when they gather together for something it is too sit and visit and so it is not in their nature to sit quietly and listen. Dawa is working hard to teach them importance of hearing the Word. In time, with patience, I am hopeful that they will find a way to gather for worship in a way that is God pleasing and still fits into their culture. Raju was almost apologetic as he described them as being almost like children who need to be taught to sit and listen. This is just another lesson in the patience that the Lord has shown to all people. We tend to put so much emphasis on the form of worship, as if it were a prerequisite to hearing and believing the Gospel. But here in Nesing, the Lord is calling, gathering, and enlightening His chosen children through the Word alone, inspite of their inability to sit and listen! We can thank and praise the Lord that He is far more patient with us than we are with each other!
Dawa the evangelist has but one request. He wants to learn more so that he can be a better pastor for these people and so he can spread the Gospel elsewhere in the Rawsua area. He could, no doubt, be making a better and far more comfortable living in Dunche or even Kathmandu but he has chosen to live in the small, remote, secluded, and difficult village of Nesing so he can serve the Lord and His people. He lives in a small, one room, house with his parents and helps with the farming work of the village. Raju and his father would like Dawa to be able to come to the pastoral training meetings of the HCLC-Nepal but the distance and travel time is just too great. From Nesing, Dawa would need to walk down and up the mountain to Dhunche and then take an 9-hour bus to Kathmandu and then another 6-hour bus to Chitwan. This would require at least 3-4 days of travel one way. As an alternative to attending the meeting in Chitwan they are hoping they can find a way for Dawa to come just as far as Kathmandu once a month or so and stay for a few days so Raju and JB can give him some personal one-on-one training. Rajan and Raju, and perhaps JB, are also planning to make periodic visits to the Rasua area to offer training for Dawa and encouragement to the Christians there. The round trip costs for Dawa to come to Kathmandu for monthly training is approx. $12.50 at the current exchange rate. This young man is a testament to the Holy Spirit’s work in his life. Dawa is sacrificing so much for the sake of the Gospel and, from an earthly standpoint, is gaining nothing. From an earthly point of view, he would be considered by his peers as one of the lucky ones who has “made it out” of the harsh and burdensome life of the typical mountain villager, and yet he has returned to this very life because he knows how much the Lord loves him and how much the people of his home village need the Lord. Amazing! Please pray for Dawa and the congregation there and pray that the Lord will provide the Biblical and pastoral training that he desires and needs.

I could go on and on with descriptions of the beauty and uniqueness of the Rasua district and the Tamang people but I need to cut this off at some point and with only another ½ an hour of power I need to get this uploaded to the web.

Thank you for your prayers for us, my family, and the spread of the Gospel! The Lord is good and greatly to be praised for all He has done and continues to do for His many children across the world! What a privilege to serve Him!

I will head to the airport tomorrow (Tuesday) around 1:00 pm and will be home in St. Louis on Wednesday night. So, this will be last post until I get home. Thanks for reading!

In Christ,
Pastor Ohlmann

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Overnight in Kathmandu

Back in Kathmandu -- Two days ago we taught another seminar at a congregation in the Chitiwan area. We spent the night in a town near the Chitiwan National Forest that is very near this area. We got up early and took an elephant ride into the jungle and were lucky to see a black rhino, monkeys, and some spotted dear. After a 6 hour ride, we are back in Kathmandu for the night and then an early 5:00 am bus to Dhunche which is near the Tibet border. From Dhunche we will walk 3 hours into the mountains to visit a congregation there. We will teach and preach there on Saturday and then hike back down the mountain to return back to Kathmandu on Sunday. There are a few congregations in this area and several house churches among the tribal peoples. There is an evangelist there who will be attending the pastoral training classes that will be taught by the HCLCN. We will be very close to the Himalayan mountain range.

Power gets cut soon so I had better sign off for now. Thank you for your prayers! You are all in my daily prayers as well.

In Christ,
Pastor Ohlmann

Five Days Later

Power Shortage – It has been four days since we have had Internet access. Or perhaps, it would be more accurate to say that it has been four days since we have had reliable electricity to access the Internet. It is really amazing how far the Internet now reaches. A couple of the towns we have stayed in are (by western standards) very primitive and yet you find an Internet café on virtually every corner. The problem in Nepal right now is the power shortage. The explanation I was given is that after 10+ years of terrorism, political turmoil, and poor leadership from the ousted monarchy the power plants are in such disrepair that many of the turbines are no longer in working condition. On top of that, there has been a drought that has lowered the water table to a point where there is not enough water to move the turbines to generate the enough power to meet the demand. There is hope among the people that all of this is being worked on now that the monarchy has been replaced with a democratic form of government, but they are at the same time skeptical. So what does all of this mean? It means that all non-industrial power grids are shut down for 16 hours a day. In theory, that leaves 8 hours of power a day divided into two periods. The first period is supposed to be from 4-8 am and the second from 4-8 pm. In reality, the power comes on sometime in the early morning and then fluctuates for 3 or 4 hours and the same in the evening. So that is why it has been four days since the last post.

Travel and Mountains – We traveled the long and winding road from Kathmandu to Hetauda on Saturday afternoon. This road takes you over the highest pass south of the Himalayan range. Mt Damon has an observation point from which you can see (on a perfectly clear day) seven of the highest mountain peaks in the world. It was a cloudy day and we were assuming that we wouldn’t be able to see any mountains, (although to us it sure seemed like we were in the mountains already) but then as our vehicle climbed above the clouds and the sun began to shine you could see the mountain peaks. We stopped for 45 minutes or so to climb to the observation point. The sight was beyond anything I could have imagined. Aw inspiring does not do justice to what I saw and felt. I just simply do not have the words to describe the view and beauty of what I tried (unsuccessfully) to take in. Pictures just do not do justice to what God has given our eye the ability to behold. “O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder, consider all the world Thy hands hath made…then sings my soul, My Savior God to Thee, How Great Thou Art, How Great Thou Art!” As I stood their gazing at the mountains, thinking how fortunate I was to have come here on a day when we could see the mountain range, the Bhitrokothi family was apologizing that we came on such a cloudy day. I can’t even imagine how amazing it must look on a clear day. Reluctantly we got back in the jeep and drove the remaining two hours to Hetauda where we gladly checked into our hotel for a good night of sleep.

Seminar Sunday in Hetauda – On Sunday we conducted a one-day seminary in the local congregation. The pastor’s name here in Milan and he is one of the pastors I met back in June. We had over 100 in attendance. We explained what it means to be saved by grace through faith with sermons and Bible studies. At mid-day a meal of rice, chicken curry, and dal (lentils) was served to everyone. The Nepali women really know how to cook. Their food is very similar to Indian food but without as much spice. I really love the food here. You get all the flavor of the spices without the extreme heat that is common in India. Following the seminar the folks stayed around to introduce themselves and to visit with each other.

A Humbling Experience – After most everyone had gone home Pastor JB asked to talk to me privately. He led me to a quiet corner of the church and began to explain to me that Pastor Milan, his family, and one other member of the congregation had been fasting and praying for 21 days in preparation for this seminar. A few months ago when the details and schedule for our trip were confirmed, Raju informed the various congregations and pastors when we would be coming. Pastor Milan marked the date on his calendar and counted back three weeks. He and his wife, daughter, and one member of the congregation have only eaten a small portion of plain rice each day and have spent 1 hour in prayer each of those days specifically praying for our safety, health, our families, congregations, and for the success of the Gospel to be preached in the congregation. Then they all gathered around Matt and I as we sat in a circle in the middle of the church and we prayed together a prayer of thanksgiving for all that God has done for us. I can’t tell you how humbling it is to know personally that a group of people sacrificed so much out of love for the Lord and His people. To think that these folks spent so much time in prayer for my personal safety and the well being of my family and the congregations I serve just takes my breath away. I am getting a little emotional again as I write this. On a morning when I woke up grumbling and complaining about the lack of warm water, the dirty towel I had to share with Matt, and the lack of electricity the Lord brings home to the reality of His love for me and His people through the dedicated service of these four humble Christians. The other thing that is amazing is that no one else in the congregation knew that they had fasted and prayed for these last 21 days and they waited until most everyone was gone before I was told. They asked for nothing in return except that I lead a prayer of thanksgiving to the Lord for the blessings they had received through the Word that was taught and that we come again to teach to and preach. The Lord willing, we will come again. The Lord is good and greatly to be praised!

The Nepali Context – What we take for granted when it comes to theology and doctrine is a precious gift from the Lord that we ought to daily thank Him for. The past two days have been spent with the original 9 pastors of the Himalayan Church of the Lutheran Confession of Nepal (HCLCN) that we met last June in addition to 14 more who have since become interested in learning more about Lutheran theology. Pastor Koenig and I have often talked about the need to be flexible when doing mission work. These past couple of days have proved this to be true. We came prepared to present a thorough introduction to Luther’s catechism but one hour before we were to begin we were told that since there were many new pastors who were going to attend it would be good to go through the CLC Statement of Faith and Purpose (SFP) again. In June we went through this document with the original 9 but at that time it had not yet been translated into Nepali. Since Raju had now finished the translation, it was available for all the pastors to read and study. So we quick dug out the one copy of SFP in English that we could find and quickly began to make notes and prepare to teach and discuss.

The above paragraph didn’t quite go the way I had intended so let me get back to the point.

What we take for granted…Most of us have grown up in the Lutheran church knowing that the Bible teaches that Baptism is a gift from God, it is something He does for us rather than something we do for Him. Such is not the case here. These pastors have never heard of infant baptism before now. As one would expect, they had many questions. What was good to see was that the 9 pastors who we taught months ago were the ones answering the questions posed by the new pastors. They have spent the past six months, just like the Bereans in the book of Acts, comparing the things we taught them back in June with God’s Word and were now explaining the truth of God’s word with boldness and conviction. The problem that they are now facing with infant baptism is that within the Nepali context there is a fear of baptizing anyone under that age of 16 because of former government policies. In the (not so distant) past the Christian church was completely underground in Nepal. It has only been in the past 40 years or so that Christianity has been legal. While it may be legal…it is still not widely accepted and is still persecuted on many levels. When the monarch first declared Nepal a secular nation some 20+ years ago there were regulations that came along with “conversion.” There was a concern that there would be forced conversions so a law was passed that the church was not allowed to baptize anyone against their will. In Nepal, a person may apply for the rights of citizenship at age 16 so the government also decided that no Christian “conversions” could officially take place until the age of 16. Since baptism was considered an act of conversion on the part of the individual, no baptisms took place before the age of 16. In addition to this, the government required that the individual sign a document that declared that he was converting by his own decision and there was no coercion involved. While none of this is required by law any longer there is still a fear among most Christians that the government is still watching everything they are doing and waiting for a reason to persecute them. So it is still the practice of most all congregations to follow this practice of baptism after the age of 16. They now understand that Baptism is God’s gift to sinners and that since children are sinful from birth they too need to receive the benefits of baptism but it will take some time and patience for them to instruct the people and put this into practice. Again, it was wonderful to see the men that we taught last year taking hold to this doctrine and explaining it to the new men.

The Power of the Word – Another example of the Holy Spirit at work came after our lunch break. Before we stopped for lunch I asked if anyone had any questions about anything we had discussed or what they had read on their own in the SFP. One of the new men raised his hand and asked about giving the Lord’s Supper to infants and children. He was wondering if we taught that since infants could be baptized then could they also receive the sacrament? I told him that we would be discussing the Lord's supper later in the day and his question would be answered then. He was satisfied with that and we stopped for lunch. After lunch the man raised his hand and asked to speak. He held up his Bible and then the CLC Adult instruction manual (Shadows and Substance) that has been translated into Nepali as he spoke rather excitedly for quite awhile. I wondered what he was saying. He seemed quit happy to be sharing something with the other men. When he finished, Raju turned to me and told me that he was reporting to the other men that he had found the answer to his own question in “Shadows and Substance” and the Bible. He explained that infants could and should be baptized but that they could not take the Lord’s Supper because they were unable to examine themselves. He went on to explain that as soon as children are taught enough to examine themselves and know what they are receiving they should be accepted to the Lord’s Supper. He then told them that he had learned this in “Shadows and Substance” and then told them where to find the Bible passage in 1 Corinthians. Thank you Lord!

Prayers – As we travel to various congregations we receive lots of varied prayer requests. Not that any one request if of greater importance, but I just don’t have the time to write them all down. My journal has several pages of names and requests. I want to share a couple of them with you and ask you to include these in your own prayers.

Dhau Bahadar – a young man of Tribal descent who came to Kathmandu from a remote tribal region about 180 KMs east of Kathmandu when his wife almost died from an emergency cesarean section delivery of their first and only child. He is currently working in Kathmandu to earn enough money to pay the hospital bills and then they plan to return home. The village he is from has no Christian church. The Lord called him to faith through a mission organization that came to his village and distributed hand-powered radios that are set to receive Gospel broadcasts through out Asia. The radios are given free of charge and have a little hand crank on the side that generates the electricity to power the radio. This young man wants to return to his village and start an HCLCN congregation with the help of Raju and JB.

Masucha – A woman in her mid forties who was brought up in Kashmir as a Muslim. She married a Hindu man against her parent’s wishes and moved to Northern India and then to Kathmandu. She and her husband were converted to Christianity through the Gospel preached by JB. She has become a very strong Christian and member of the congregation and is very supportive of the work of the ministry. She asks that we pray for her family back in Kashmir, that they too may know that love of their Savior.

Maya – A middle-aged woman who was brought to faith about seven months ago. Since that time she has faced many troubles in her life. Her husband has lost his job and they are having financial problems. Her husband is not a Christian and he says that demons have entered their life because she is going to the Christian church. She has also been very sick and the devil is tempting her to return to Hinduism. She also asks for prayers for her two children…Laxshmi—a daughter and Raj Kumar—a son.

Wishing I Could Sleep – If you have made it to the end of this post you are probably wondering how I had time to write all of this with the power and Internet problems. Well…my body has not adjusted to the 12-hour time difference yet and so I have been falling asleep around 8 pm every night and waking up at 3 or 3:30. Fortunately, the power comes on at 4:00 am so I am able to type all of this on my laptop in my hotel room while Matt sleeps so peacefully in the other bed (grumble, grumble…yes I am jealous and coveting Matt’s ability to sleep) and then I copy it to a stick drive and post it to the blog the next time we find an Internet Café. It is now 5:00 am and I am ready to get this day rolling.

Until next time…please continue to pray for our health, safety, and the success of the Gospel message. And please keep Beth and the kids in your prayers. Hannah and Caleb have been sick.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

48hours later

We made it...after being awake for basically 48 hours we arrived in Kathmandu right on time. Our flight from London took about 5 hours longer than expected due to a medical diversion. A passenger dislocated his shoulder lifting his bag into the overhead compartment and started having trouble with his heart and blood pressure. The plane was turned around and we flew 1.5 hours back to Warsaw Poland where the man was taken to the hospital and the plane was re-fueled and de-iced.

After a, much needed, good night of sleep we held our first of many seminars. We taught lessons on the grace of God and how the doctrine of election God's grace in our lives.

Not much to report so far...I was great to see Raju and his father at the airport and to see so many of the familiar faces of my brothers and sisters in Christ at the church today.

The weather is cool and overcast. The temperature was great for sleeping but didn't provide any warm water this morning because their water heater is a big black tank on the roof that needs sunlight to heat to the water. I think I Will try for a shower this evening since the sun has been shining a bit today.

In Christ,
Pastor Ohlmann

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Heading to the Himalayans

On Monday, January 19th I will travel to Kathmandu, Nepal to meet with the pastors of the Himalayan Church of the Lutheran Confession of Nepal (HCLCN). I will be traveling with Missionary Matt Ude who is on his way back to India after spending time with his family over Christmas. Our schedule includes a training seminar in Kathmandu before we head west to Hetauda for a one day seminar and then to the Chitwan valley where we will conduct three days of training with pastors of the HCLCN. Then we return to Kathmandu for a day before we travel to the northern Nepal/Tibet border to meet with former Buddhists who are currently serving the Lord as Christian evangelists. You can see a copy of our schedule at the bottom of this blog along with links to other blogs, websites, and reports.

If you would like to know more about how we got involved with the work of spreading the Gospel in Nepal, please read the report from the 2008 visit. Just cut click here:

I am not sure what kind of Internet access we will have during the trip, but I plan to update this blog as often as possible. Please check back often.

Your prayers for the proclamation of the Gospel and for my family and the congregations I serve in Missouri are greatly appreciated.

In Christ,
Pastor Todd Ohlmann