Raleigh North
Gideon Newsletter

January 2002

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. . . behold, now is the accepted time; now is the day of salvation.

(2 Cor. 6: 2b—Gideon Scripture Memory Course no. 28)


A Happy and Blessed New Year!

[New Year's cartoon.]


New Year’s Resolutions


1. Share Jesus with someone today!

Give them a witness and a PWT.

2. Pray fervently each day for lost souls.

3. Resolve to save one dollar a day for 100 days until April 26.

Then give it to the State Convention Faith Fund (goal $225,000).

The 100 Day Countdown begins Jan 17 (See January Tar Heel Gideon).

4. If you haven't already, resolve to pay your dues today.


Regional Training Seminars Scheduled

[Seminar cartoon.]

There is a new emphasis on the Memorial Bible and Church Assignment programs. Recently, revolutionary changes have been made to both programs. They will be passed on in comprehensive training seminars across the state. The basic idea is to impact local camp performance so that more funds will be supplied to place more Scriptures so that more lost souls will be won to our Lord Jesus Christ. For more details, see January’s Tar Heel Gideon (p.5) or the November and December issues of The Information Bulletin online (www.Gideons.org).


The following are strongly urged to attend one of the following seminars: Camp Presidents, Camp Church Assignment Chairmen, Camp Memorial Bible Chairmen, Camp Membership Chairmen, Camp Auxiliary Presidents, Area Directors, Area MBPA’s and CAPA’s, and State Cabinet Officers.


·        Statesville (January 12)—Western Avenue Baptist Church

·        Fayetteville (January 26)—Prince Charles Hotel

·        Durham (February 9)—Berea Baptist Church, 5011 Fayetteville Road (544-7151)

·        Greenville (February 23)—Hilton Hotel


All seminars begin at 9:00 AM and end at 12:00 Noon with lunch provided for you at no charge! To sign up, contact Ray Cooksey at 919-847-0521.


Camp Meeting January 15:

God’s Work in the Auxiliary

[Auxiliary logo]

Our next camp dinner meeting will be held at Embassy Suites, 4700 Creedmoor Road, at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday, January 15. Don’t miss this time of food, fellowship and inspiration. For the first time ever, the Auxiliary will be in charge of the Gideon program. They will discuss their purpose, what they do, and what’s new in the Auxiliary. And there may be a few surprises in store!


If you made a commitment to be at our last meeting but couldn’t attend we were still charged for the meal. Please consider offering your meal cost ($15 per person) to the camp fund c/o Gideons International, PO Box 33635, Raleigh, NC 27636.


One-on-One Meeting Coming up:

Bring a new Gideon!

The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few; Pray ye therefore the

Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.

(Matthew 9:37b-38)

[Men shaking hands.]

Our purpose as an association is to win others for the Lord Jesus Christ. Until the Lord returns, there will always be a harvest, and there will always be a need to pray for laborers. Now is the time to search out prospective members, invite them to a meeting, and encourage them to join the ministry. When we pray for new members and then by faith seek and find those the Lord would send, we are in effect winning more people to Christ. 

Our camp’s One-on-One New Member Meeting is scheduled for February 19, 2002. Our speakers will be Mike Steiner (Gideon State Vice-president) and Juanita Vickers (Area 8 Auxiliary Memorial Bible Program Assistant). Please invite a prospective Gideon and let Membership chairman Cliff Merrill (844-1418) know right away that he is coming. Cliff will write him a confirming letter of invitation.


PRAY FOR: Victor Goncharenko,

in serious auto accident with multiple injuries.

[Victor Goncharenko.]

Many of you have met the lively and ebullient Russian Gideon, Victor Goncharenko, now the Eastern Europe Field Representative. Meeting him is like a “brush with greatness,” because he truly is a great Gideon, indeed historic. It was Victor and the Lord who stepped forward out of the fallen USSR in 1989 to claim Russia for the Gideons and the Lord.


Since 1989, the Gideon ministry, spearheaded mostly by Victor, has been organized in eleven independent countries, which were formerly a part of the old Soviet Republic. The combined populations of these countries total more that 252 million souls. Many of them have never read or even seen a copy of God’s Word. Today in these countries there are 228 Gideon Camps, 3,355 Gideons and 1,603 Auxiliary members. As of October 31, 2001, over 64 million Scriptures have been distributed (January 2000 Information Bulletin)!


But now Victor needs your prayers more than ever.


Last Sunday, January 6, Dimitry Mustafin, President of the Moscow Gideon Camp reported that Victor was on his “ordinary trip in Belorussia visiting camps, organizing new Gideons and sharing his Christian fire with new workers.” On Saturday morning, December 15, they were driving in the car with Belorussian Gideon leader Eugene Gutman along the dangerous snowy road in the countryside, about 50 kilometers from Minsk, Belarussia. Dimitry says “They clashed with a big bus that was going in the opposite direction, and than another car that was going after them clashed them very strongly.” Victor suffered most of all.


They would have frozen to death quickly, but help arrived very soon—very unexpectedly—before anybody could call for help. Miraculously there appeared an ambulance. It was going to another accident but the ambulance team already knew that the other people were all dead. So they decided to help the people that were still alive—the people that they met “by a lucky chance” on the road.


To make a long story short, they had to cut the car to get the men out. It took a long time. They took them to a small country hospital. The diagnosis was bad for Eugene Gutman: his hipbones were badly broken. The diagnosis was extremely bad for Victor: “he got bad cranium brain trauma, his ribs were broken, his lungs were injured, both tubular bones of his shins were broken and he started to swell very rapidly.” After two days, Victor’s wife Liudmila and son Igor finally caught up with him. Victor was badly swollen, did not recognize his wife and was very sick. They took him to the city hospital in Minsk. Other Gideons arrived, including Jaakko Telsi from Finland, who suggested they take Victor from Minsk to the hospital in Helsinki for adequate treatment in a good hospital.


As the hospital attendants loaded Victor on the stretcher, his face winced with terrible pain. Dimitry told them, “Please, be careful, do not make sharp movements, he has head injuries.” Victor heard him and somehow smiled and said, “What do you want from them? Probably they are not Christians yet. If they would be Christians they behaved themselves another way.” Here was Victor, suffering very much from any sharp movement, very close to death, but still dreaming about bringing these hospital attendants to the Lord!


Pray for the doctors that they may have wisdom and insight and pray for Ludmilla and the remainder of the family.

[Man paying dues cartoon.]



A Wonderful way to Say “I Love You”

With Living Memorial Bibles

Show the new Memorial Bible Video in your church soon—in Sunday School or at a church dinner. People that prefer to send Bibles continue to send flowers because they don’t know how to send Bibles. Show them how! New “In Memory,” “In Recognition” and “Thinking of You” cards are now available. Contact Memorial Bible Chairman Garland Tucker at 785-0404. Garland says: “Don’t you forget how to use the Memorial Bible Plan. Send someone a card today!” 


In Memory:  John Tillman "J.T." Trevathan, 64, president of the Tarboro camp, went to be with the Lord on December 18, 2001. He was owner and operator of J.T. Construction Co. in Macclesfield, NC. J.T. was killed around 10 a.m. when an attempt to blow up a beaver dam went wrong. According to an article by Buck Young in the Rocky Mount Telegram, Edgecombe County Sheriff James Knight said, “Trevathan put three or four sticks of dynamite, six to eight inches apart, in the beaver dam. He ran wires about 150 feet from the dam to a detonator battery and was behind a backhoe and tree when he set the dynamite off. A piece of flying log from the explosion hit him in the back of the head killing him.” Knight characterized the accident as "very unusual," and looking at the scene of the accident one would have thought Trevathan “was well protected.”

J.T. was a deacon in Edgewood Baptist Church in Crisp, and trustee of Macclesfield Volunteer Fire Department. "Mr. Trevathan worked with the Sheriff's Department ministering to the inmates," Knight said. "He also worked with The Gideons International giving out Bibles." His long time business associate and friend, Ronald Wooten, said, "If he knew of a child that was deprived, he made sure that child got something. If your house caught fire, he was there to help."

Memorial gifts may be made to The Gideons International, P.O. Box 15, Tarboro, N.C. 27886.


Church Assignments

Church Assignment Chairman Doug Schmidt reports total church receipts (as of January 4) of $5,354 towards our goal of $14,000. This includes an additional donation from Providence Baptist Church, for which we praise God. Please pray that the new Comprehensive Church Relations initiative will show us more ways to build stronger relationships with pastors.


As a reminder, you may want to line up a church service on Rally Sunday, May 5, when many Gideon speakers will be attending the State Convention here. The convention goal is 100 local area church services that day. How long has it been since a speaker was at your church? Contact Doug at home (782-5311) or work (781-0304).


Pray for Richard Justice, who will be giving a Gideon report at Six Forks Baptist Church on January 27.


Butner Prison Ministry

Prison Chairman Tom Wallace reports that the Butner Bible class was cancelled Friday night, January 4, because of adverse weather. Plans are for the class to move back into the “big” room now that Ramadan is over.

[Prisoners' Christmas card]Prisoners'
Christmas card
to the Gideons

The big room is normally used by Muslims during Ramadan because it gives them room to spread out their rugs and to pray on their knees. Plans are to start on the book of Matthew this week. If you feel led to this ministry, call Tom Wallace at 919-782-0903. PRAY for this ministry and the prisoners.


It has been sort of a custom for “graduating” class members to share their thoughts just before their release from prison. Recently, Jerry said, “I was not very biblicly oriented before I came to prison, but I more or less turned my heart over to the Lord. I had lots of problems, including more charges pending. But the Lord removed all of them. I also have a Christian wife who stuck with me and is waiting for me when I get out. I praise the Lord for what He has done with my life and give Him all the glory.” He also said that this Bible study was helpful to him.  


Dwayne, a very large man, was supposed to be incarcerated for eight more years. He tried to get things squared away but couldn’t even get a hearing. When he first began attending the Bible class, he was somewhat bitter. Over time, he became very supportive of the Bible class and joined in class discussions. Gradually, the bitterness went away and he became reconciled to his situation. He prayed constantly. Suddenly, he got the hearing and the eight year potential went away. “It happened so quick,” he said, “that I was amazed.” Perhaps the Bible study had something to do with it—perhaps not—but there was a change in Dwayne as a result of the Lord working in his life.


Jail Ministry

Wake County Jail inmates Michael and Jerome signed the back of their New Testaments and received Jesus Christ as their Lord as they prayed with Gideon Ray Cooksey—a nice birthday present for Christ. Many other men were very remorseful to be away from their families on this Christmas Eve eve, Sunday, December 23, and asked for prayer.


That evening, Ray, along with Frank and Dot Rawley, Malcolm Hawkins, Charlie Rabb, Gary Pendleton and Cliff Merrill, gave out 119 PWTs, 32 Lady’s PWTs and 38 Spanish New Testaments. This visit seemed to allow our Gideons to spend more time witnessing one-on-one with the residents. A special evening was enjoyed by all as they shared the good news of Christ.


Counselors Needed in Burlington

According to Area 8 Director Ray Cooksey, Burlington kicks off its New Member Plan with a dinner in February. Counselors are needed. As counselor, you will sit at a table with 1-3 prospects and lead them through a membership flip chart presentation. Prior to the dinner, you will receive all materials and training in what to say, what to do, and how to do it at the table during the meeting. Contact Ray at 919-847-0521.


Continue to pray for Richard Justice and Juanita Vickers, new member training leaders for the Roxboro camp. Richard is busy training the 11 new members.


MEPS Recruits Need You!

[Recruit cartoon]

A need for backup volunteers exists at the MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Station). Gideons are needed to present Service Testaments to new recruits and to witness for Christ. What do you do? Offer free copies of God’s Word to new recruits while expressing prayers and appreciation for their service to our country. (Read “U.S.A. Military Distribution Guidelines” in your Gideon Guide Book.) Working hours are terrific—7:30-8:00 a.m. on weekdays only. Call Carl Nanney at 876-1973.


Saturday Morning Prayer

Join the Gideons and Auxiliary at 7:30 Saturday morning at the Sheraton Four Points Hotel in Crabtree for Scripture reading and prayer. Stay for a great time of fellowship and breakfast! Ladies, please call Nadine Kay at 870-9266 if you plan to attend. Also, please come to the monthly meetings with your husband.


Camp Calendar

Jan 12:


State Convention planning meeting—10-12 noon, N. Ral. Church of the Nazarene

Jan 15:

Camp meeting—Function of Auxiliary (Ladies present the program.)

Feb 19:


Camp meeting—One-on-One Meeting. Speakers: NC Gideon Vice-

president Mike Steiner and Area 8 Auxiliary MBPA Juanita Vickers. 

Mar 2:


State Convention planning meeting—10-12 noon, N. Ral. Church of the Nazarene

Mar 19:

Camp meeting—State Convention planning

Apr 6:


State Convention planning meeting—10-12 noon, N. Ral. Church of the Nazarene

Apr 16:

Camp meeting—Camp elections

Apr 21-27

Bible Blitz—Chicago. Contact Ivan Dremann at 815-379-2380

May 2-5:

State Convention—Raleigh

May 21:

Camp meeting—State Convention returns

Jul 23-28:

103rd Gideon International Convention, Louisville, Kentucky


Respectfully submitted,

Pat Simpson, Newsletter Editor

(919-877-0434 or e-mail PatSimpsonBooks@cs.com)

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