Val McLoughlin

Prayer Letter/Ministry Update

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Dear Friends, April 2020
As everyone is saying, these days we are living in are so strange. The whole world is experiencing the impact of the coronavirus and so we all adapt as we can. Some countries are ahead of others in time spent in lockdown, but we are all living in the same world in these crazy times!

Cultural Tidbits
Everyone knows about April Fool’s Day, but many believe that it originated in France in the 16th century with the calendar change. New Year’s Day moved from April 1st to Jan 1st and those who kept to celebrating April 1 as the first day of the year were seen as “April fools.” Here, people will tape a paper fish to someone’s back and then when they find out about the fish on their back, the prankster yells, “Poisson d’avril!” (pronounced pwa-sew-dav-reel) It means April fish.

Work
Since my work is all online anyway, nothing has changed for me. The only change I have made is where I do my work and now that is from home all the time. I do go to the office to get mail and print stuff and general things like that about once a week, but other than that, I’ve brought my computer screen home and we’ve extended our table to the full length to accommodate two children (on the weeks we have them) and one adult (Mally works on the couch with his computer, but sometimes joins us at the table).

Language
Before the virus hit, I would go into Paris each week to meet Corinne, my French tutor. Now, we have switched to Skype each week at the same time and it works great. I am the only student she has now that we are in lockdown as most of her students get together with her just to talk and have coffee in Paris. She looks forward to our time together each week as we learn about the French revolution! A few weeks ago, we were meeting on Good Friday and she asked me to “tell her a story.” Why do we “celebrate” good Friday? What a great question! I’m so glad she asked! We had a short, but sweet discussion about Jesus and why he died on the cross! Thanks for praying for her. Please continue!

Various
On March 17, 2020, France went into lockdown because of the coronavirus. All schools were closed and kids went to online schooling. All restaurants and stores were closed. Only grocery stores, pharmacies and doctor’s offices are open. We have just entered our seventh week of staying at home all the time. We are a bit stricter here as we can only go out for specific reasons like getting groceries, going to the doctor, walking a dog, getting exercise (though this can only be as far as 1 km-less than a mile- from your home and no more than one hour), going to work if you can’t work from home and assisting older people or children. For those with alternating custody of children (which is our case), we are able to go back and forth with the kids as per normal as they stay with us one week and with their mom the other week. When we go out, we must have a paper with us stating the reason for being out and it must be signed and dated along with the time. All parks and forests are closed and police are out patrolling. If you are found in violation of anything, you will be fined. The fines can be as high as 200 euros and usually not less than 135 euros.

I’m sure you’ve heard stories of wonderful things happening during this confinement period that otherwise would not have happened and there is no shortage of stories like those with us. Let me share a few with you. The first week we had the kids during the confinement, we had the kids’ mom up at our house a lot. It was her 50th birthday that first weekend and, of course, her plans to go out with her friends were cancelled. We decorated the house, put pictures up on the wall of her through her life, made dinner and a birthday brownie cake in the shape of the number 50 and had gifts wrapped up for her. When she walked in the house and saw the pictures up on the wall, she started crying. She was so touched and said this was the best birthday ever! We had her over for dinner other times and then the week after, she invited us for dinner when we took the kids back to her house and she asked Mally to pray for the meal! She has never done that so it was surprising and encouraging. The day after that, she asked if I would come color her hair as her hairdresser is no longer available to her. She told me I did a better job than her hairdresser. So, we are seeing wonderful things happen whereas if life were “normal,” we would not see that at all.

We live in a gated area, a park with a number of buildings in it. There are some musical people here who have been getting together – in a socially distant way – who practice and have asked Mally to play the drums in their small group. They gave a socially distant concert in the middle of our park on Saturday night! We are getting to know our neighbors in a way that we wouldn’t if life were “normal!” We praise God for these opportunities.

Just a few notes to follow up from my last letter…
-Continue to pray for our church as we long for the Lord to do his work in the lives of his people.
-Mally’s ordination service scheduled for early April was postponed.
-Our prayer retreat in February went well as did my time working in the office purging files!
-We are SO thankful that we followed the Lord’s leading in going to Ireland to see Mally’s dad. Our trip there was really good and we were able to spend some excellent one-on-one time with his dad as well as time with the family and his dad together. We were expecting him to be worse than what we found him to be and were thankful that he was doing well. TWO days after we returned to France, we got word that because of the coronavirus, they locked down the nursing home he was in and no one has been able to go in to visit family there so we praise God for his perfect timing! Since then, we have heard that two people in the home have contracted the virus, but as far as we know, no one has died from it and Mally’s dad is still healthy.

Across the globe, Alliance international workers remain in over 60 countries, following local government protocols and restricting unnecessary travel. Some workers in high-risk categories for COVID-19 have relocated to where medical access is more readily available. As things are constantly changing, we remain in close contact with our regional leaders. Please pray for discernment, for protection, and for a new openness to the gospel.

Our office in Colorado is physically closed, but it remains open and functional from everyone’s remote locations. We are in our Great Commission Fund giving season and this year it looks a little different! Check out our site online at https://cmalliance.org/give/. We have had a donor come forward in this time to give a matching donation to the first $250,000! We are already at over $170,00! Thank you to all who have given already. I love watching God work in times like these in finances AND people’s lives!

Thanks and thank you also for your support in prayer and financially. You are appreciated!
Valary
9 rue Racine
78220 Viroflay
France

Email: rivergirl007@hotmail.com
Note: Please send postal mail address changes to Lynn Mullenix, 2631 W. Lawrence St., Appleton, WI, 54914.
For email address changes, please send them to me at rivergirl007@hotmail.com. If you receive this letter through the postal service but would like to receive it by email, let me know!
Phone (from the States): 011-33-9-81-69-89-50

Ways you can give:

1. To the Great Commission Fund of the C&MA
2. “Valary McLoughlin-outfit fund”
3. “Valary McLoughlin – work”

These tax-deductible gifts can be made payable to “The C&MA” designated to one of the funds above and sent to: The C&MA, 8595 Explorer Dr., Colorado Springs, CO 80920.

Great Commission Fund (written on the memo line) This is where my monthly allowance comes from as well as the monthly allowances for all C&MA workers.

Outfit Funds. Each field maintains an outfit list that defines what items a worker may need to live and carry out ministry on that field such as items for the home, clothes, etc.

Work Specials. These are funds designated for the work of an international worker. Work Specials may be used for any activity, project, or equipment related to the worker's ministry such as a prayer letter or prayer cards.
Personal Gifts These funds go to the worker for their own personal use. In such cases the C&MA is prohibited by law from issuing tax-deductible receipts. Workers may use personal gifts in any way they choose.

Prayer Requests/Answers to Prayer

Prayer Requests
1.What an opportunity we have with our neighbors at this time! Continue to pray for their salvation and that now more than ever, they would see the love of Jesus in us.
2.Pray that the leaders of our church would be able to reach out to our congregation in these times in a way that would be encouraging and helpful. We want Jesus glorified in everything.
3.Thank the Lord that I’m still able to meet with Corinne. Pray for good conversations specifically about the things of the Lord.
4.Pray that the Lord would be drawing the kids’ mom closer to Him and that He would make Himself known to her.

Germany

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Updated: April 29, 2020

Children's Names
Status
Field Assignment
Country of Service
Germany
Address
9 rue Racine
78220 Viroflay,
FRANCE

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