Many of SonSet Solutions’ international ministry partners, using sophisticated electronic equipment, are at risk of equipment damage due to unreliable electrical power. Imagine the frustration experienced by a Christian radio station or a mission hospital when their expensive equipment is destroyed in an instant by something so esoteric as the electricity coming from their outlets. Is the problem with their provider, with how they set up their facility, or due to the way their neighbor is using power next door?
During the summer of 2019, two interns, Maury Funez and Michael Dubisz, began the development of a solution – a low cost power quality monitor. This device will help visualize the abstract electrical power quality by measuring and recording specific properties of the electricity at a ministry location. This data will then be transmitted via the Internet to the team of engineers at SonSet Solutions. They, like a team of doctors, can examine the symptoms, write up a diagnosis, and prescribe a treatment in the form of an affordable power quality solution tailored to a specific partner’s need. The power quality monitor is in the functional prototype phase, and plans are under way for their deployment. Soon they will be helping ministries overcome their electrical power quality problems, effectively increasing their reach into local communities.
Joseph was born into a very religious family in the country of Burkina Faso. His parents first belonged to the Muslim faith and later became Catholics. As a result, Joseph remembers practicing many religious rituals. “They gave me bells to wear on my wrists to be strong for the fight. With bells I could beat 50 people around me.”
Joseph studied his Bible and learned many verses. He often visited an evangelical church and talked to a pastor who would pray for his sick grandmother.
One day, a friend from college invited him to an evangelistic campaign. It was there that he felt the call of God on his life. The pastor proclaimed, “God is calling you!” Joseph said, “I stood up, and the pastor prayed for me.” Continue reading
If it weren’t bad enough being hospitalized, having to go without food would be detrimental during a patient’s recovery process. Like many hospitals in Africa, Pioneer Christian Hospital in the Republic of Congo had no way to feed its patients. Family members were responsible to make sure their loved one was fed during their hospital stay, but not all patients had someone who could take on this responsibility. In an area with thousands of refugees and people afflicted with leprosy and HIV/AIDS, many patients are on their own.
Candice Scatliff, a nutritionist from SonSet Solutions, and others were burdened by this plight. In 2017, as a temporary solution, Candice worked with donors to provide North-American-derived dehydrated food bags to feed the hospital’s patients. This was monumental, as it was the first time the hospital fed its patients in its ten years of operation. Continue reading
That was my first thought when a colleague approached me about helping a radio ministry in the country of Burundi.
The radio ministry is called Radio Voix d’Espoir (Radio Voice of Hope) and is located on the campus of Hope Africa University in Bujumbura, Burundi. Located in Central Africa, Burundi is surrounded by Rwanda, Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, covering an area about the size of Hawaii.
My task was to install new computer systems, do some training and evaluate their current studio and equipment needs.
Located on the third floor of the academic building, Radio Voix d’Espoir provides Christian programming 18 hours a day to their listeners. Continue reading
Traditionally, when ministries approach SonSet Solutions, it is for help building a Christian FM radio station with a range of about 10-15 miles. The installation averages about $20,000, and several staff are needed to operate it. SonSet Solutions is working on a radically different concept to help ministries and churches reach the lost in their immediate neighborhood.
We are developing a small, modular Wi-Fi system to “broadcast” Christian content up to about 100 yards, depending on the terrain. It will be a portable, self-contained unit that can be placed on the rooftop of a church, for example, and provide a variety of content to nearby cell-phone users 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The content can be tailored to the needs and interests of the micro-community that the church wants to reach.
It all costs less than $500 and doesn’t require any full-time staff to operate it. Because it is not a real FM radio station, there are no government applications, red tape or delays to deal with. It could be purchased, installed and broadcasting all in the same day helping our ministry partners more efficiently and effectively reach their immediate communities with the Good News of Jesus Christ!
Sometimes we think, “I have so little to offer that I don’t see how I could ever be used by the Lord.” Such was the case for Mike Axman, a 22-year-old high-school dropout and introvert, with a radio hobby who had just found Christ. Mike felt a strong calling for evangelism . . . but how could he do that?
While at a loss for a plan, the Lord showed him missionary radio. “That’s it! I can get the Good News to the world by joining a missionary radio ministry!” The Lord provided him with further education. Afterwards, he had a role in the operation and installation of high-power radio stations in the orient.
Later, mission agency HCJB World Radio invited Mike to work with a team in Elkhart, Indiana, to develop a 500-kW shortwave radio transmitter capable of overpowering Russian jamming efforts. He later worked with the development of nine 100-kW shortwave transmitters which were deployed internationally.
Christians in former communist nations wanted to start their own FM radio stations but shipping was not reliable. Continue reading
Divine Appointments – We praise the Lord for divine appointments! In the past two weeks we have seen ministry workers from Ghana, Peru, and South Sudan visit SonSet Solutions to explore ways that we might collaborate in the gospel.
Workers for the Harvest – The opportunities for Kingdom service are great. More workers are urgently needed. Pray for the following staff needs to be filled at SonSet Solutions: Human Resources Assistant, College Liaison, Story Teller and Events Coordinator
SonSet® Radios for the Amazon – A recent report from Radio Logos in the northern Amazon region of Peru shared that they urgently need more SonSet radios. Thanks to the gifts of generous financial partners, we are now preparing to send another 1,200 units.
Campaign Success – Nov 1, 2019 marks the beginning of our 2019 year-end funding campaign. Pray that the Lord will lead many of His people to give generously to the work that He is doing around the world through SonSet Solutions and our ministry partners.
Valuable Training – Praise the Lord that three of our staff were able to attend a valuable leaders training conference where 150 like-minded ministry organizations were represented. Pray that new ministry partnerships will result from these important connections.
Raising Awareness – Praise the Lord for the opportunity that Tim and Becky Yazel had to represent the ministry of SonSet Solutions at a large church conference in the Detroit area. Pray that the Lord will use these contacts to further His work around the world.
Yes, being a Christian and a techie can be perfectly normal and purposeful in ministry. It is possible to share both profound spiritual conversations and technical discussions. The International Conference on Computing and Mission (ICCM) is the place where people can go to meet other Christian technologists who are striving to advance Jesus’ Great Commission by using their skills.
Understanding the joys and realities that come with combining technical things and ministry allows for networking and sharing the “latest and greatest” ideas and experiences within our rapidly changing world. For example, the “What’s Hot/What’s Not” session is an opportunity to share both practical advice and common struggles. What are you buying? What are you NOT buying? What are you getting rid of? What about anti-virus and malware?
Our own Dr. Leon Amstutz led a session this year discussing electronic equipment power protection and grounding practices. This issue is particularly important in developing countries where electrical power surges can destroy expensive, sensitive equipment. Sharing ideas, observations, and know-how provides an avenue for more effective use of technology, bringing the gospel to every nation.
“I don’t really like retirement parties, because I don’t want this to be about me. My desire is to bring glory to God,” expressed John Wineman at a recent retirement party. Bringing glory to God is what he has done in his 12 years of faithful service with SonSet Solutions.
John and his wife, Carol Ann, were saved at age 30, and it was always their desire to serve God. They considered ministering in India, but their pastor cautioned against it. It would take years to learn the language and a lifetime to learn the culture. “Look for a position that will leverage the skills you have,” he advised.
John’s expertise was in problem solving, team coordination, mentoring, and teaching, skills he gained through his work with two technical powerhouses: Continue reading