Thursday, May 1, 2014

Our New Building is Almost Ready!

Hey Everyone!

Well, as you know, we are eagerly anticipating moving into our new building. All that needs to happen for us to “gain occupancy” is for the fire sprinkler system to be tested and for the facility to pass it’s final inspection. If everything goes well we will be able to have our first worship service on May 18th.
There is really no way that I can think of to adequately thank all of you who helped with this process by giving financially, praying faithfully, and volunteering to work on the building. Our general contractor, Dan Schillperoort, says he believes volunteers have saved us about $200,000 in labor! I also struggle to express how excited our church family is about having a church “home” of our own.
In addition to having worship each week, we will use the new facility for weekly youth group meetings, weekly discipleship groups, various children’s ministry events, outreach events, sports camps, etc. Eventually, we hope to have a school, summer day camp, and more!
Maybe the most exciting part of all of this is the fact that the teenagers in our youth group have a strong sense of “ownership” their new church building because they have invested many, many hours (along with some “blood, sweat, and tears”) in the renovations of the building. Over the last two summers 55 teenagers from White Swan put in 100 hours per summer per student toward work on the building, working on homes of elders and single moms, and helping our teams and staff host Kid’s Clubs in the tribal housing projects. All of us on staff are thrilled with the desire that the students have to minister to their own community and to be involved in meaningful opportunities to serve. These young leaders are learning that they can share the love and truth of Christ even now.
We would love for you to come visit us on a Sunday whenever you have an opportunity. Mark May 18th on your calendar if you’d like to be at our first service. We’ll let you know asap if there is a problem that prevents us from meeting that week. We plan on having a “Dedication Service” three or four weeks after the first service at which you would, of course, be welcome. We also hope to have a “Grand Opening” in July with a bbq, games, etc. and a “Family Field Day” in the fall.
Thanks again for your partnership, for all of your prayers, and for your love for us and for His Kingdom. God bless you and yours. We hope to see you soon!

In Him!

Chris Granberry


Our Youth Group with the Sacred Road Float at the Harrah, WA Fall Parade

One of the actors in the Bible story/skit at Kid's Club

A little friend who stole my heart at the Adam's View Kid's Club

Yaanibaah and Ann Marie in Totus Park

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

A Kid's Club Story

Some little girls stole my heart in March. When I drove up on the first day of Kid's Club an eight year old named Chalea came running to greet me. We ran around some, played on the swings, did the craft, and blew some bubbles. Then I asked if she’d like to sit down and read a children’s Bible together. She said “yes”. Pretty soon some more girls came over to listen to the stories we were reading. None of the girls seemed very familiar with any of the most common stories. At the end of the day I gave each of the girls a children’s Bible to keep. They were beaming as we said our “see ya laters”.

The next day at the beginning of Kids Club, Chalea came running to me with a huge smile on her face. She couldn’t wait to tell me that she had read 115 pages in her new Bible on her own! All she wanted to do, in the midst of all of the fun activities at Kids Club, was find a quiet place to sit and read with me again. Please pray for Chalea and all the other children in Totus Park and Adams View. Pray that the Lord will give all of them a hunger for Him and for His Word like little Chalea’s. Pray that He would protect them, provide for them, bless them, draw them to Himself, fill them with His Spirit, and use them to transform this community for its good and His glory.

Please pray to that all the funds would come in to finish out the work on the new building and that this facility would be a “spring board” or a “launch pad” for even better things for the community of White Swan. To give click here.

-Chris Granberry

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Easter Service

Hello Everyone!

As many of you know, this is a very exciting time in the life of this ministry. Almost nine years ago the Granberry family moved here with the desire to see the Lord establish a church in the town of White Swan. Over the years a lot has changed. More families and individuals have joined our full time team, hundreds of people have come on one week teams to love and serve, thousands of believers have prayed faithfully and invested generously (including you!). We've also hosted over 400 Bible Studies in the longhouse for hundreds of people from the community. Hundreds move have attended the annual Christmas feast (sometimes 450 at a time). We have also had the joy of baptizing 75 people of all ages! All along the vision and the goal has remained the same: to see a healthy church established in White Swan. Well, on Easter Sunday, April 8th, we had our first official Sunday Worship Service! It took almost 9 years (I predicted it would take at least 12). We gathered in the longhouse for a meal at 6:30, then had worship and concluded with a baptism service.


Everyone loved the meal that the "Hope Fellowship" ladies made for us. The worship service went really well too. About 160 folks came and four were baptized! I was particularly struck by the singing (which resonated through the longhouse) and so many smiling faces. Another great moment was when a friend of ours, Bob, surprised us by singing a song about the resurrection before he prayed during the service. Also, it was really special to listen as Thomas, one of our teenagers, volunteered to read the account of the resurrection from the gospel of John. I had the joy of baptizing a five month old little girl named Ekko. She stole my heart with her big, chubby cheeks, black hair, and "huckleberry" eyes. I also got to baptize two brothers who are about 6 and 8 years old. They were so excited. And finally, a sixteen year old young lady named Amanda, who was beaming! I also had the joy of picking up an elderly couple, Slim and Sally, who had never come to our Bible Study before. They went to a lot of trouble to come because Sally is in a wheelchair and their car is in the shop because the ran into a horse a couple of weeks ago! It was hard for Sally to get in my vehicle, but she made it in. I thought this would be a one time visit to our church but at the end of the night, Slim and Sally were all smiles and said they would start coming every week! They also asked me about baptizing their great granddaughter, Sally Ann.

Please pray that all of the 140 (or so) folks who have been coming to Tuesday Night Bible Study will make the transition to coming to church on Sundays and that they will truly take "ownership" and recognize that this is "their" church. Pray too that many would "be added to our number". Pray that the Lord would raise up local leaders and that we would have many opportunities to continue to share the Gospel, disciple new believers, and "equip the saints for ministry" here on the rez.

As I said above, it is a very exciting time in the life of the ministry and we hope that you share that same sense of excitement. The Lord is good and He is truly "on the move" here in White Swan. He is drawing many people to Himself and we believe the best is yet to come.

We could not be here without you. Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, for your prayers, love, and generosity. May the Lord "repay" you ten times over.

Come See Us!


Rev. Chris Granberry (for all of us)

Friday, January 6, 2012

(left to right: Davy, Mary, Chris, Beth, Morgan, Ann Marie, Connie, Marisol)


Merry Christmas from the Granberrys!

This year the first verse of “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” has really gotten my attention. It tells us to “rest”, to let nothing “dismay” us, as we “remember” that Jesus has come! I can’t think of a more timely message than that! Can you? It goes on to remind us why He came; to “save us from Satan’s power, when we had gone astray”. The song tells us that these are “tidings of comfort and joy” and truly they are! When you think about it, there are no words that come close to providing the comfort and joy that this message contains. The fact that God has loved us enough to send Jesus to save us from the devil and from ourselves is the best news the human ear could ever hear! In light of these “glad tidings” I hope and pray that you too can rest, remember, and rejoice in the amazing love of God the Father and in the finished work of Jesus on our behalf, this Christmas. May the Lord bless you and yours richly this Christmas and throughout this year. ~Chris


As a worksite leader, I was put in charge of roofing the house of Rainbow (7) and Adora (5) on the first team week of the summer. Two of their cousins, Odessa (5) and Sharyce (3), live just across the street. On the third team week I was overseeing the roofing of the house next door to Rainbow and Adora’s. Both of these weeks have had a big impact on me. I was shown again and again the effect that so many people have on the children where we work. These four girls have been my special buddies for a long time. It was fun for them to watch me as I worked on these roofs. Each morning they would be roused by the banging of hammers on the roof and know that we had arrived. I would watch as they slowly came outside to observe us as we were pounding away. It became routine to hear them call my name, one after another. They would shout, “Beth!” (Adora and Sharyce had trouble saying my name and it sounded more like, “Bess”) Watching, as I turned to wave, they would grow silent. I started to call them my sheep because when they yelled my name it sounded more like little lambs crying “baaaa”. Gathering at a window, they would share a little pair of red binoculars, with Toy Story characters on both sides, to get a better view. Every two or three minutes I would have to come back into view and reassure that I was there to watch them play on a small and beat up set of swings or chase each other around the dirt yard. All I needed to do was simply stand on the edge of the roof, smiling, waving, and ever so often answering their calls. Just by doing such a small thing, I was able to love on these four girls in a meaningful way. Every time I heard my name I was filled with pride and delight, not because they were so good at swinging or running, but because they were “my girls”. Near the end of the summer, Rainbow and Adora’s dad was released from prison and they moved away to live with him again. Odessa and Sharyce were often not at home and I couldn’t see any of my girls. The longing and need I felt to embrace them reminded me of how much Christ wants to embrace us as his children and the delight He has in us. When you think about it, that’s why he came. He came to be with us, to cleanse us, and to delight in us! ~Beth (16)


I think Christmas is amazing because that is when Jesus was born! It is wonderful that Jesus was born because without Him we wouldn’t be alive! He is awesome. He has brought us all together. If I didn’t know the Granberrys we wouldn’t be a family. I’m excited this year because I get to spend time with my new family (especially my new cousins) as we all gather around. When I think about Jesus being born I’m glad that the shepherds and kings and angels came to see Him. I’m glad that they brought Him gifts, sang new songs to Him, worshiped Him and told everyone about Him! We should be like them too if we love Him! ~Connie (9)


“Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will to men.’” (Luke 2:13-14) I wonder what it was like for the shepherds that night. Getting to hear a choir of Angels, singing praises to God. One minute they’re listening to the bleating of the lambs and the chirping of crickets, the next they’re witnessing the most extraordinary vocal performance of all time. For the last year or so, I have been leading praise and worship for our “baby church”. My favorite part about this time is getting to watch the children. As soon as my guitar is out, there are at least five kids following me around. Once I’m sitting down, they all gather at my feet to watch me. Listening to the kids sing gives me goose bumps. I love the looks on their faces as they watch me play. Not all of them know the words to the songs, most of them can’t even read along, but they love watching and listening as everyone else sings. It fills me with hope. Most of the children knew nothing of Jesus nine years ago, and now they’re singing praises to Him. It says in Revelation, that “every tribe, every tongue, and every nation” will be gathered around the throne. We will cast our crowns at His feet and join the Heavenly Host in singing praises to Him. I look forward to the day when many of “our kids” will sit at Christ’s feet, eyes and hearts fixed on Him, singing with the same angels who sang before the shepherds. ~Ann Marie (18)


“Yet I am not alone, for the Father is with me.” John 16:32

Our first summer on the reservation I followed my dad as he got pictures and put together a simple slideshow for the teams to take home to share with their family and friends. I wanted to take part in taking the pictures or putting everything together. In a few years the slideshows began to include video clips and became less like a slideshow. Interns took on the job of putting together ten to fifteen minute videos and I helped collect video clips and a few pictures. I loved helping but always wanted to learn how to put everything together. A little less than two years ago I finally got the job. Having taken part in the photography and watching past interns and staff members work on it all on the computer I knew how to do everything. When I first got the job I thought I would still take part in the painting and especially the roofing on the worksites and tried to do what I could while still managing to get the footage I needed. Ann Marie and Marisol helped a lot by taking pictures, but as I tried to do it all I realized I wouldn’t be able to finish the videos on time and get to work with everyone. This last summer I focused only on making videos. Taking pictures and videos. Working on the video. Playing with “my” kids at Totus Park. Taking pictures and videos. Working on the video. Go to sleep early in the morning then wake up and start again. I felt alone. For about seven years I had gotten to know the teams, worked with the teams, interns, and my family, and gotten to hang out with my siblings. In getting the position I had wanted I had been separated from everyone around me as I spent time in the office trailer editing pictures. I have needed constant reminder that God is with me. In making videos the last two summers I have been given the chance to view everything that happens in one week and have seen that God is moving and working in unexpected ways through the people in White Swan and Warm Springs, which is a miracle few get to witness but is brought by the prayers of many and the incredible love of our Sovereign Lord. ~Morgan (15)


This year I was sent many places, such as Warm Springs, White Swan, and a three month furlough. I spent most of the summer in Warm Springs in charge of taking photos and making video that Morgan needed. It was a great learning experience for me, and I enjoyed it a lot. By the end of the summer, the children at kids club in Warm Springs all knew my name and would want to play with me. This was really special. Two of the five weeks of the summer I was in Yakima and I worked on the roofs and went to both Adams View and Totus Park housing projects for kids club. I enjoyed playing with multiple children in Yakima this summer each I can’t wait to see them when I return. This fall my whole family was sent on a furlough. It has been such a blessing. I have gone to six national parks and have gotten to spend two months in Florida. It has been a great rest for our family. So, I have been sent many places lately. All of which have been a huge blessing. All of this then makes me consider where Jesus was sent. Not so he could be blessed, but so that we could. He was sent to earth, from his comfortable, heavenly home, so we could be with him forever. The Lord of the universe was placed in a feeding trough, as a baby in rags, so that we could live forever. That is what I consider when I think about Christmas in relation to my past year. – Davy (13)


This summer I was on the roof with Beth all summer except the week that I went to Warm Springs for the first time. What was supposed to be a two-day visit ended up being the whole week. It was great to see the different ways God has spread his gospel through Sacred Road. My first day I was there I could not wait to go to kids club. When I arrived a little girl came up to me and played with me all day in the sprinklers and blowing bubbles. I never saw her again but when I was playing with she told me some of the Bible stories she had heard and how she loved hanging out with the previous teams that had come. I think until then I had forgotten how much the kids are processing about the word of God and remembering it even weeks later. When I became a small group leader at the end of the summer I got to see more of the kids on the Yakama Reservation. We were talking about Jesus’ life from his birth through the time where he raised Lazarus from the dead. Another great time this year when I got to see the word of God spreading is when we went to First Baptist Church in Dothan, Alabama. The Sunday we were there the whole service was about missions and how you can help. They showed us videos of people working with the people in Guatemala, Jamaica, and right in their hometown, Dothan. Just seeing other peoples mission work and how the lives of people have been changed through Christians all over the world. This is what God has called us to do in the Great Commission. “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Which is why Jesus came into the world. So I hope your Christmas is full of joy and the spreading of Gods Word. ~Marisol (14)


At the manger, those who were strangers became family and just like today, “ those who were far off have been brought near.” (Eph 2:13). How astounding it is that a simple couple from Nazareth, rough shepherds, educated wise men, and hosts of angels were all brought near to the newborn Savior that first Christmas. It makes me smile to see myself as part of this odd assortment of folks. It reminds me of my favorite Christmas memory. I was 13 or 14 when my family celebrated our first Christmas as a Christian family. This change caused some dissension among our extended family and we had no one to celebrate Christmas with that year. My parents did something unusual and invited others, who would have been alone on Christmas, to join us for dinner that year. We greeted our newborn Savior and strangers in our home that day and I was forever changed. After all, it is what Jesus would have done and the sort of thing he did do. After a sabbatical rest, I too am looking forward again to opening the doors of our home to our Savior and strangers. My parents’ example that “first” Christmas in the Murphy house has become a pattern for the Granberry family, as we share our joy of being brought near! ~Mary

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A story from Tuesday night


by: Joshua Tsavatewa
Children's Ministry Director

When ‘the troublemaker’ climbed out the van, I immediately thought, “Oh boy. I’ve to keep an eye on him and he’ll be going home soon.” ‘The troublemaker’ doesn’t usually come to Bible Study and when he does, he winds up going home early. He hadn’t been around since April, and he was sent home three of the four weeks he came. I didn’t expect much from him and kept an eye on him, waiting for him to throw rocks, hit a kid, knock stuff over, or cause mayhem. And, it never happened. He played well, ate supper, colored, sang, and eventually joined my small group.

Throughout the whole time with the children, ‘the troublemaker’ was exemplary. I ask my boys questions from the lesson, and it got to the point where I said, “Ok, this question is for everyone else,” because ‘the troublemaker’ was answering every single one and I didn’t get to hear from the others. As the evening progressed, I asked the kids, “What’s something that we learn about Jesus?” And he pipes up, “He heals us!” When we did the craft, ‘the troublemaker’ painted a big heart on his page, so I asked if he knew what a heart represented and he did. I asked him, “Who do you love?” And he answered, “I love Jesus.”

It’s amazing how God works in the hearts of the children. Even those we don’t see for months. How He convicts us of our lack of faith. How He shows us what He’s doing in the lives of these kids. I don’t know what the future holds for this kid, but when he left he asked me, “Can I be your helper next week?” My heart welled up with tears and I told him: “Yes, you did a great job tonight, and I’m looking forward to next week.”

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fantastic Summer Update from Our Youth Director, Chuck Clevenger

Dear Friends and Family

There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears. – Philippians 1:6 (The Message)

We (the Clevengers) have just finished our third summer of ministry here on the Reservation and it was a wonderful time of growth in the youth group. There are more stories than I could possibly share in an email so I have included links to our blog with stories and pictures from the summer. Thanks to all of you for your prayers, support and encouragement that make our life and ministry on the Yakama Reservation possible.

I want to tell you about the fifth and last closing ceremonies we had at the end of the last team week. “Say so” is always a powerful end to every team week - we ask everyone if they saw God do something during the week to say so. The idea is based on our responsibility and privilege as believers to witness and then testify to the work of our Savior.

This summer saw Chis Granberry baptize 11 of the kids in the youth group as well as fifteen of them work side by side with the summer church teams - roofing homes, improving the new church building and playing with kids in Totus Park. A number of them were there at closing ceremonies that last Friday as well, and you could sense the power of God’s Holy Spirit as they testified publicly and privately to the way they, themselves, had seen God changing their hearts and minds. Closing ceremonies can sometimes be a very emotional experience but I have never felt as proud of our youth leadership as I did that night. I thank God for each of them and for the summer he gave us all.

I’ve spent a lot of time since that night, filled with wonder, thinking about it and trying to remember how it all happened. I’ve written about several key events during the summer and included links below:

Summer Roof Number 2 - The second team week started in the middle of June after the school year had ended so it gave me an opportunity to take some of the guys from my D-Group to the work site with me … (more)

Promotion Monday - At the very beginning of the summer we had an ice cream party to celebrate our rising sixth graders graduating from the children’s ministry in the youth group … (more)

Camp High Rock - The week of Camp High Rock - the week of July 4th - coincided with a team week this summer, so we could only send Heather and myself with the high school junior counselors to camp … (more)

A Week in Warm Springs - I spent the fourth team week in Warm Springs with Eric. I had hoped to take my whole D-Group with me for the week but in the ten days leading up everyone but Eric had to cancel … (more)

Skateland Trip 3 - Sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand words - or at least several hundred. We took the youth group to Skateland in mid July. It was one of our biggest outing yet with 54 of us on the rink … (more)

Family:

All of the Clevengers are gearing up for Fall after a two-week break at the end of the Summer. It was a sweet time of rest and for us to have a long spell of quality time with each other.

Asha will start third grade next week which doesn’t seem to be possible. Her teacher is the pastor at one of the churches we work with on the Reservation so we are thankful that we have a friend in her classroom.

Isaac was moved to a toddler bed a week ago. Neena and I braced ourselves for a long night of him being able to get out of bed on his own, but he never did. The downside - he won’t get up in the morning without one of us getting him. So our mornings usually begin with him calling us over and over again from bed until someone comes.

Prayers and Praises:

We praise God for the arrival of Bill and Tina Yarbrough and their four daughters to the Sacred Road Team. Bill will be working as mercy ministry coordinator and has already built a bed for one of the children in his first week here.

As great as the summer was, it felt like it came to a screeching halt in August as we learned about two deaths in our Hope Fellowship family. One was a nine-year-old boy who was killed in a car accident in the closed area of the Reservation. We had just played kickball together the week before, He had been a big part of our Kid’s Club Bible skits and a regular attender on Tuesday nights. Please pray for his family and his little sister.

The father of three of the kids in the youth group died last week after recently being diagnosed with cancer in the stomach. The family had recently moved next to the Longhouse where he was working as the groundskeeper. He was always very kind to me when we showed up at the Longhouse to decorate for the Christmas feast and various interactions in the community. In a recent talk with Chris, he confessed a saving faith in Jesus and asked Chris to perform a wedding ceremony for him and the kids’ mom. They were married just a couple of weeks before his passing. Please pray for his family, especially his daughter, who has spent a lot of time with Chris and Mary this summer.

With the frenzy of summer behind us, I have more time to devote to support raising. Please join me in prayer that others might be as excited as you about what God is doing in the hearts of teenagers in White Swan and be moved to give generously so that we can continue to grow this ministry that means so much to us.

Thank you again and may God Bless you a hundredfold,

In Him, By Him, For Him

Chuck, Neena, Asha and Isaac

Address:
The Clevengers (for mail)
155 Kamiakin Avenue
Wapato, Washington 98951
Phone: 509-388-3669

Support:
Sacred Road Ministries
22116 SE 51st Place
Issaquah, WA 98029-9221

Links:
http://www.rustlings.com - Clevenger blog
http://www.sacredroadministries.com
http://sacredroadyakama.blogspot.com/
http://www.youtube.com/user/SacredRoad - videos

An Excellent August Update from Heather German


Hello Family and Friends,
As I reflect over the summer on all of the joys and the sorrows I am reminded of a verse in 1 Peter 5:7 which says, "Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you." With all the people that come and go in the summer months sometimes it is hard to know what to do with all of the memories- the good and the bad. What a comfort it is to know that the Lord is our friend who bears all our anxieties and cares.
It hardly seems possible that our twelve week summer program has come to an end. We had a very eventful summer. 19 houses were roofed here in Yakama, several hundred kids were loved on and heard the gospel both in Yakama and in Warm Springs, Oregon, and 29 people were baptised. Most of the baptisms were of children and youth who regularly attend our Tuesday night Bible study. Also, we had five full teams serve on the Warm Springs Reservation as well as on the Yakama Reservation. To watch videos of the teams and baptism services visit you tube.
I enjoyed spending more time with several of the girls from our youth group. We spent several weeks this summer building and priming 21 picnic tables for our new church facility. It was fun to learn how to use the power tools with them and to share a feeling of accomplishment. I enjoyed seeing how proud they were of their own work. To read more about the tables and to see a picture visit my blog here.
I was also able to spend a week at summer camp with our youth director, Chuck Clevenger. Camp High Rock is the work of four churches coming together to serve kids 4th though 8th grade. This year there were about 80 kids. The high schoolers worked as junior counselors. We had about 10 of our youth who worked as junior counselors. They did an amazing job of serving the kids by helping them with their crafts, leading small groups based on the Bible lessons, and helping serve and clean up all of the meals. Chuck and I led the evening Bible lessons and we were able to use the youth to help us retell the stories to the kids. To watch a video of camp click here.
Also, I was able to spend a week with one of our youth, Felicia, serving with a team down in Warm Springs. It was good to watch Felicia serve Native America not only on her home reservation, but also on another reservation. We worked with the tribe on several projects which included: painting planters in their community garden, painting and posting house markers for the fire department, and cleaning the community center. It was good to see our youth group find their role in the church this summer through working with the teams here in Yakama, helping at Camp High Rock, and serving down on the Warm Springs Reservation.
As a team we continue to taste the pain and sadness in the community. A couple of weeks ago a 9 year old boy, Sonny (pictured above), who has been a part of kids club in Totus Park and has attended Tuesday night Bible study off and on was killed in a car accident. It is hard to know why the Lord would take Sonny at this time in his life, but we know the Lord is good and just. Pray for his family, especially his younger sister sissy who has also been a part of kid's club and Bible study. Pray that we would have good interactions with his family over the coming months.
I just received word today that the recent caretaker of the Long house, Jesse Gomez, past away. He was diagnosed with untreatable stomach cancer at the beginning of the summer. His wife Leah, one of his three daughters Thelma, and two of his three sons, Sam and Manny, have been a part of our Bible study. Chris Granberry had a few chances to talk to Jesse before he passed away and he did confess Jesus as his Savior. Pray for his family as they go through the several day funeral process. Pray for comfort and strength for them over the coming months and that they would cast there sorrows onto Jesus.
I continue to be so thankful to be living and working and the Yakama Reservation. Thank you for all of your prayers and support for me and for the community of White Swan.
Heather German
PO Box 218
Harrah, WA- 98933