SOWER Ministry Newsletter April 2022
Dear Friends,
Ah, Sweet April. 
Spring has officially arrived (although if you are in the Midwest you might not believe it!) and the roadsides and gardens are starting to come alive! From the crocus poking up through the snow to the wild flowers that brighten the median strips to the desert in bloom in the West, there is renewal in the air! While spring is bursting out, SOWERs are busy serving! This month 109 SOWER couples are serving at 50 different projects! We give God all the praise and glory for every board painted and nail driven!
Everywhere we look there is new life bursting out - a constant and true reminder of the New Life we have in Christ. As believers, we celebrate our Lord's Resurrection and his perfect gift of Life Eternal each and every day. But this month we share in a time of special reflection - Resurrection Sunday. My prayer is that you will indeed be renewed as you embrace the wonder of the Resurrection!  

He is Risen! He is Risen Indeed!!!

May He get all the Praise and Glory!
Stephanie Conrad #2509  
A Servant's Testimony
Anne Stromberg #3756
Serving with the SOWER ministry at Pusch Ridge Christian Academy (PRCA) (AZ-393) this February was an uplifting and gratifying privilege. We served with fellow SOWERs Ralph and Lella Bledsoe (#3723). Our RVs were parked in the school’s parking lot at the foot of the Pusch Ridge which is part of the Santa Catalina Mountains in Tucson, AZ. A spectacular view greeted us each morning as the sun rose over the ridge.
This K-12 private school reflects all that education can be. Watching how the students interact with each other and with their teachers is what I imagine all parents hope for their children’s educational and social development. I can’t help but ponder how our country would be different if every child could experience what this school offers.
This institution’s commitment to developing men and women of faith and character is remarkable. Biblical teaching is woven into the curriculum and the culture of this school. PRCA clearly expresses its vision for each student through the “portrait of a PRCA graduate.” This portrait articulates five character traits that are cultivated in each student: a Virtuous Steward, a Courageous Christian, a Justice Seeker, a Truth Seeker and a Servant Leader. Sports are an important element of PRCA as well, challenging students to be disciplined and to grow physically and spiritually.
Serving as SOWERs at the PRCA filled us to overflowing with gratitude and with greater hope for the future, knowing that PRCA graduates will make this world a better place. We hope to return in the future!

Blessings to you, fellow SOWERs!
Steve & Anne Stromberg #3756
Spreading the Word
Meredith & Carol Nering #3100 and Wayne & Gail Fieler #3187 represented SOWERs last month at the FMCA Rally held in Tucson, AZ. They passed out over 300 SOWER brochures and had several responses for applications. Inquiries about the type of work we do and where were most of the questions they received.
We are always looking for SOWERs to man these booths. It only takes a couple with enthusiasm about serving our Lord around our country. At these Rallies you hear comments like “I wish we had heard about this type of organization 15 years ago”. Christians are looking for ways to combine service with travel. It’s fun to sell your “product”. Pray for our next group that will be attending the Escapades Rally in Lebanon, TN in July. If you are close by, go by the booth and encourage them. Gail Fieler #3187
Underserved Project Update
The office has put together an updated list of ministries that have received six or fewer SOWER couples in the last 24 months. Check the PLS to see where you can serve or contact the office to get any clarification about these underserved projects.

HELPFUL HINT: When you get up at 3 a.m. be careful not to bump your key fob. A beeping horn makes it hard for fellow SOWERs to sleep.
Lynn Rinehart #3809
Area Rep Needs
A SOWER Area Representative (AR) is a vital part of our ministry. The Project Committee (Vice President and two others) works with the ARs to stay connected to our various ministries. Essentially, the ARs are the 'boots on the ground' for the ministry, mainly checking on existing projects periodically and taking a look at prospective projects.
Here is our current need -

Southern CA
CA - 145 Grace Fellowship & Cherry Valley Brethren
CA - 461 Father's Heart Ranch
CA - 481 Coachella Valley Rescue Mission
CA - 500 Forest Homes Millcreek Canyon

Please contact Dick Howard for more information!

I want to give praises to our Area Representatives. As a result of adding more ARs and decreasing the area of coverage, the ARs have made physical visits to almost 70% of the projects. They have also decreased the number of projects that have not been contacted in the last 3 years to 11. I just want to thank all the new AR's for stepping forward and "old" AR's for a task well done.
Dick Howard
The Texas Round-up Wrap-up
The Collators
The Staplers
While the remnants of Covid-19 and the price of fuel may have diminished the numbers at the Texas Round-up, what we lacked in quantity we made up for in quality! Once again ALERT provided exceptional accommodations and meals along with a great facility for fellowship and community. We were able to help out with a service project collating the Gospel of John and Romans to be sent worldwide. There were five couples at this rally who had worked less than six projects and one of them had not even begun their first! We had wonderful times of fellowship and this reunion was just a small glimpse of what's in store for us at next year's 40th Anniversary Rally!
Gary & Stephanie Conrad #2509
Let us not forsake gathering together....
2022 Western Wound Up
September 19-22, 2022
Aldersgate Camp and Retreat Center, OR-320 Turner, Oregon

SOWERs Intentionally Following
Jesus Christ

Costs include 4 days/3 nights will be as follows (includes 2 lunches and 1 dinner):
Full hook ups - $75 or $25/night
Dry Camping - $50
Lodging - $30 per night
2 additional dinners available at $10 per person per dinner
Monies (cash) will be taken at Rally
Registration: contact Matt & Golden Phillips at or 720-323-2155
Get on up!
The Oregon Rally (aka Western Wound-up) is a great opportunity to meet new SOWERs and hear from seasoned SOWERs about their favorite projects. Get the facts on being a Group Leader, Area Representative and/or a Sponsor. Come compete with games, fellowship with others and just relax with your friends. Reminisce on God’s goodness and encourage one another.
 “Get on Up” and register for the Oregon 2022 Rally today!
Save the Date!!!
**Seminars ** Entertainment**
**Project Hosts**Fellowship**Games**
The 40th Anniversary Rally Committee is waiting to hear from you!
Contact any of us with suggestions for making this a celebration to remember!
Mike & Jackie Barber #3601
Gary & Stephanie Conrad #2509
Wayne & Gail Fieler #3187
Dwayne & Margaret Gearhard #3263
Ron & Reenie Maynor #3738
Carol Nering #3100
Gary Smith #3627
Wes & Carolyn Strausser #3369
Nelda Thompson #3445
Dick & Billie Mondello #3923
Sermon on the Mount (OK-555) is one of the newest members of our SOWER ministry family! Located in Anadarko, OK, SOWERS will be helping with the construction of a new hospitality center and other projects on the ranch. They are asking for five (5) SOWER couples in Apr, May, Sept, Oct and November.
Ethnos Canada (ON-554) is our newest Canadian Project. This ministry helps local churches mobilize, equip, and coordinate missionaries to the thousands of unreached people groups. They are located in Durham, Ontario. For 2022, they are asking for two (2) SOWER couples in August.
For over 70 years, Elim Lodge (ON-556) has been a place of rest, relaxation and spiritual development for all who walk its grounds. Located on Pigeon Lake in Lakehurst, Ontario, Elim is another new Canadian project. They are asking for two (2) SOWER couples in October and November to help with cottage construction and other year end chores.
Looking for more information about these new Canadian projects? Check out the latest edition of the Canada East Newsletter for more details and other words of encouragement!
Wondering when you can sign up for 2023 projects?
The 2023 project months will be open for sign-ups starting with the publication of the June-July SOWERGRAM and PLS. So if you're checking online, watch for them starting May 27th.
Seen recently on Facebook
Thank you, Dennis, for sharing about not only the work SOWERs were able to do, but also about the inspiring work done at the Gospel Rescue Mission (AZ-487).
Have you stopped by our Facebook Group lately? Please use caution and respect when posting. This is a PRIVATE group (only members can see posts and add posts), but it is still good Facebook etiquette to get permission before you post someone's picture. Thanks!

If you're a member of Facebook, but haven't joined the SOWER Group, click on the icon to join the family! Just enter your member number in the question, and the Administrator will approve you.
Since the SOWER Facebook group is a ‘private’ group, we try to limit our members to folks that are SOWER members or project hosts, and couples that are interested in joining our ministry.

If you invite other interested folks to join the group, they will still need to answer the membership question. Thanks!
Thank you to everyone who has given our SOWER Facebook Page a "Like". We're over 1400 "likes"! If you haven't already given it your thumbs-up,  head over there now! It's a great way to spread the word about our ministry. 
While the SOWER Facebook Group is for sharing SOWER stories (and is something that you join), the SOWER Facebook Page is where the ministry shares information and works to generate interest in our ministry (and is something that you 'like').
Don't forget to check out your favorite ministries on Facebook. Many of our partner ministry locations have a Facebook page, and it's a great way to stay up to date on the places you love to serve!

Clicking on the lilacs above will take you to the Members Page, the April/May
SOWERGRAM and the latest updates to our Project Listings
(updated weekly).

If you have any questions,
please contact the SOWER Office  
Nomination Deadline for SOWER Trustee has been extended to April 30th.
Group Picture this month - the March 2022 group serving at Camp Baldwin (AL-420) L-R: Bill & Barb Kray #3620, GL's Wendell & Diane Ramaker #3411, Ralph & Lynn Wacker (second project) #3865, Russ & Candy White #3817, and Don & MaryLou Musser #3115. Photo by Diane Ramaker

Header Photo -All the beautiful SOWERs at the 2022 Texas Round-up!

Dear Sam & Sally,
This past winter we worked several projects where other volunteer groups were also serving. I have to confess it wasn’t always easy. Since so many of our projects need all the help they can get, what can we do to make our joint efforts more effective and God honoring?
Wants to play well with others

Dear Playing with Others -
What a great question! It’s true that many of our projects request help from multiple volunteer groups, and each of those groups will have their own set of guidelines and regulations. And personalities. I asked a “seasoned SOWER” who has worked with many different groups over the years for some insightful wisdom:

Every group has a different mode of operating, which affects dynamics. SOWERs compared to some groups have more rules and shorter working hours. (I personally like the feeling of structured guidelines, and the host projects know what to expect from us.) 
I've heard sad, even bad reports of unhappy situations: feeling like being treated as second-class volunteers; unfriendly cliques, territorial, denominational; seemingly suspicious of one another, even hurtful comments about hours worked. 
I've also observed positive interactions: another group immediately invited us to a fish fry and made an intentional effort for us to get to know each other. We in turn invited them to our game nights. A host addressed avoiding disunity, and our joint devotions focused us on the same goals. Even when groups were given separate work assignments, eventually some individuals ended up working together. I observed there was more unity when we got to know each other personally.  
My conclusions: Keep focused on the goal of serving and honoring Christ as specialized, unique parts of the Body of Christ working together and edifying one another. Be flexible and serve humbly! Remember, God put us there for a purpose – to serve and to grow. Intentionally work toward Christian unity and building new friendships by showing genuine interest in others. (Little gifts and notes were unexpected, appreciated bright spots.) And let us always try to bring honor to the name SOWER as true, Christ-like servants of God.

Thank you for these words of wisdom! "Let us always try to bring honor to the name SOWER as true, Christ-like servants of God." Amen!

Serving Him with you,
Sam & Sally

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