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Esther’s Daughters Have Arrived

Moving Mountains

(Jesus said,)

For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”

Matthew 17:20b

It is a delight and joy to announce that Beautiful Savior’s faith in God moved a mountain. Lilean and Lovelyn Ketepa, or “Esther's Daughters” as you may have referred to them, have been reunified with the rest of their Michigan family. This is a mission that Beautiful Savior began in late 2016 and now has come to fruition.

Truly, this would not have been possible without the extraordinary support of our congregation as we stepped out in faith to protect these girls from the threat of human trafficking and bring them to their family in the United States. Having previously served a specialized call to Samaritas, the largest refugee resettlement agency in Michigan, I can attest firsthand to the difficulty of this accomplishment. Since Lilean and Lovelyn are not technically refugees (although they certainly faced dangerous situations), and they are coming from one of the few countries left on the planet not to have signed onto all of the Geneva Convention protocols, this feat is that much more impressive. If faith the size of a mustard seed can move a mountain, Beautiful Savior could move the entire Himalayas. We did this without any direct agency support. We did this, because welcoming the stranger is a central command of our faith (Exodus 23:9, Leviticus 19:33-34, Matthew 25:31-40, Romans 12:13, Hebrews 13:2, etc., etc., etc.). We did this, because we are Beautiful Savior, and we know that Gabriel said to the Mother of our Lord,

“Nothing will be impossible with God”

(Luke 1:37).

An extraordinary team of Beautiful Savior people worked tireless hours and invested extraordinary financial resources ($76,490 as of today) to bring us to this day. It’s not possible in this brief message to name all of those who helped, so I won’t even try, but I would be remiss not to mention the chief champion of this project, Marion Turowski. She steered this mission against frontal winds and helped overcome innumerable crashing waves of legal challenges and diplomatic setbacks that would make most people faint or give up. Marion deserves our gratitude and praise that this day has arrived. Speaking of this day, it happens to be Esther's eldest daughter's birthday. What an honor it is to celebrate her birthday on her and her sister’s first full day in the land of the free and the home of the brave, because this day is about a new birth for them and for their family.

As a practical housekeeping matter, any remaining financial resources in the Esther’s Daughters Fund will be divided in half and sent to educational accounts being established for Lilean and Lovelyn. At a certain point in the near future, Beautiful Savior will no longer receive “Esther’s Daughters” gifts, but will encourage people to support these educational funds instead. We will inform you when that transition date has been decided and how those funds can be supported.

Once again, congratulations. We, the entrepreneurial people of Beautiful Savior, moved a mountain in faith. Let’s continue dreaming and imagining what the next mountain will be.

Gratefully, in Christ’s Service,

Pastor Nik


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