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** November 2000 **
From Orville and Edith Jenkins

See other articles, photos and activities on the Jenkins Millennium Culture Centre.

Where are We?
Look up Cyprus on the map.  Cyprus is not far from Syria and Turkey, in the "upper right" (northeastern) corner of the Mediterranean Sea.  We are close to Lebanon and Israel, and a bit farther from Amman, Jordan, a popular business connection from Nicosia.

Though some people think Cyprus is a Greek Island, we are 600 miles from Greece, and Cyprus has never been part of Greece, other than being a territory of the Macedonian Empire of Philip and Alexander, then Greek Egypt of the Ptolemies, which fell to the Romans in the first century BC.  Cyprus is prominent in the "First Missionary Tour" of Saul and Barnabas (Book of Acts), after they were sent out by the Antioch Church.

We periodically update our information on Cyprus in our web site.

Our latest set of Cyprus photos, Cyprus Onsite, includes family members in historical locations.

Mediterranean Weather
We were relieved when it started raining in late September, soothing our parched land a bit.  In August we were sweltering here at sea level with the swirling clouds of the Mediterranean, tantalizing us with high humidity that was ever kept from precipitating! It cooled down the last week of August to the 35-38 range (95-100 F).  Fires continued in Cyprus and the Greek islands, destroying many homes in Corfu.  Fires turned to floods in September and October.

Temperatures cooled down to the low 30s (upper 80s to low 90s F).  Winter settled in for a while in October, then it got warm again.  We had temperatures in the 70s (F) again in November!

August in Cyprus is a "dead month."  Many businesses close down completely, from one week to one month.  People head for the beaches and the mountains, less than an hour either way from Nicosia.  Some go to Europe.  Many Europeans come here.

Our congregation, New Life International Church, had our annual one-day retreat for worship and fellowship in the Troodos Mountains.  The pine forest air was invigorating (aromatherapy!) and meditative!

Cyprus Road Rally 2000
Cyprus was recently host for the first world championship road rally competition to be held here.  The Cyprus Road Rally began in the 1950s, when there were still only a few cars on the road.  In the 1970s the Cyprus Rally became an international event.  Rally 2000 was the first NIA approved World Championship Rally.  It was interesting to learn that the winner of the rally in 1976 was Kenyan Asian Shekar Mehta, whom we saw compete every year in our previous home of Kenya.

What is a People Group?
Today the church in mission focuses on people groups rather than countries, giving a more realistic picture of the state of the Kingdom.  This better recognizes the cultural integrity and identity of human groupings in their ethno-linguistic identity, fostering understanding and communication.

However, the people groups concept is not new, but is found in ancient Old Testament and New Testament perspectives.  The Greek word ethnos, commonly translated nation, people or tribe, refers to ethnic groups or language groups, not the political "nation state" we have become familiar with in recent history.

Cross-cultural communication of Good News focuses not on the program or method, but the people.  Actually God is the focus, but that focus leads us immediately to the peoples he loves and is calling, through us his church and his children as the instruments.  All peoples have a right to join us around the Throne, adding their songs in their own musical styles and languages to our own, enriching our common experience of faith!

Read further about the concept of people groups in Orville's article.

Who are the Peoples?
In August our database of peoples was updated with hundreds of changes, updates, deletions and additions, which Orville had made over months of extensive research.  More extensive details were uncovered in Orville's subsequent review on the Kurdish cluster.

He has been asked to become the research editor of a worldwide database called the Registry of Peoples.

The Kurdish peoples consist of about 15,000,000 individuals who speak 11 distinct languages, related to Persian.  They live primarily in Iran, Iraq, Turkey and surrounding countries, but several million live in European countries.  The Kurds have existed at least since the ancient Median-Persian times.

A recent extensive review of the Kurdish peoples revealed a clearer relationship between the languages, people names, places where they live and the various Muslim sects involved across the ethnic lines.

See Orville's report on the Kurdish peoples.

In September Orville spent 10 days in the UK.  He led the strategy leader training on Worldview Investigation and Research for Strategy.  He also visited the library of the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, a school of the University of London.

In October two research interns joined us, for individual training and experience in research.  One will be with us until April 2001.

Media Specialists Program
Due to recent personnel changes, we are now the only management personnel with our communication company here.  This included accepting mentorship for 4 young media specialists, here on two-year assignments.  Others come periodically from other countries for a shorter period of research and media work.

Two of the personnel with us are producers for the Jesus film.  Based on the Gospel of Luke, this film has become the most-watched movie in history, produced in more languages than any other, and being prepared in more languages every month.

The production team travel to various countries to record sound tracks in various new languages, working with local contacts and sometimes primitive situations to produce quality sound tracks which can be dubbed into the film.

Sunday 12 November was the World Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church, observed by churches in 130 countries of the world.  Some members of our New Life International Church in Nicosia work in the surrounding region, among peoples who are persecuted, discriminated against, physically tortured, sometimes even killed, because they insist on worshipping God as he is revealed in Jesus.  Their Christian testimony is a threat to the government or society where they live.

Sources indicate that over 150,000 Christians die every year, simply because they are Christians.  About 200 million live in countries where they suffer.

For more information on the persecuted Christians of the world, see the following sources:
The Persecuted Church
Christian Solidarity International

Worldview and Research
Underlying all our research and media training is the worldview of the various peoples (people groups).  We deal with oral culture concepts, as most peoples of the world are not literate and abstract in the western sense, but oral and relational in culture and learning style.

Early cultural experiences set the basic patterns for understanding the world around us, and for dealing with later experiences.  Significant shared experiences with our closest society -- family and beyond -- become the basis of worldview and the social patterns for living.  This is why cultures and worldviews are different -- different families,  communities, ethnic groups, peoples have different sets of experiences, and thus view the world differently.

Their language and history are components of this set of experience, as well as their religious experience.  Thus we try to discover these deep concepts through worldview investigation to understand the peoples of the world and how they communicate, to learn how to relate and communicate the good news to them.

Read more on worldview and experience at our web site.

Orthodox Sunday School -- "All Things are Possible"
While having a late night supper with our neighbours on their front veranda (a common Cypriot summer practice), we got into a discussion about Sunday school and Bible study in the Orthodox Church.

The discovery that they use this familiar term came when we admired the napkin holder, which bore a scripture passage in old Greek script.  The son, about 12 or 13, mentioned he had won this in his Sunday school class.

They explained that not all the classes were on Sunday.  I saw that the word on the inscription was Chatechismos, the equivalent of "Catechism Class."  So we asked if this was just for the youth preparing for adult membership.  (I had already learned that they have simplified the Confirmation process, just handling it at the Baptism, which is at a few weeks to a few months old!)

The daughter answered they have Sunday School and Bible study classes for all ages!  The verse on the napkin holder was Phil 1:13, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" -- in the "ORIGINAL Greek"!

Read more about the Greek Orthodox Church.

See our family photos

Read further about Cyprus and the Eastern (Greek) Orthodox Church on our Millennium Culture Centre.

November 2000                            ==  Cyprus Sentinel  == First circulated on email 15 November 2000
First Posted 28 February 2000
Last edited 23 June 2012

Copyright © 2000, 2001 Orville Boyd Jenkins

Permission granted for free download and transmission for personal or educational use.  Please give credit and link back.  Other rights reserved.
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