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Henki Boonaerfs

John McDonald
2213 Dawn Avenue

feu fs'Mercier Iadn 135

Maas mechelen

Granite City, Illinois





Mary Esth*


John Mark

James Matthew

Vol. VI No. 1

Jan. - Mar.

We have good news that really should wait for

the May - August newsletter, but THIS CAN'T wait!
We'll trust God to provide more news for the future correspondence.
GOOD NEWS!! Happy Day!


"He that goes forth and weeps, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoic
ing, bringing his sheaves with him." Psalm 126.6 and the song "Bringing in the Sheaves" based on
this verse have taken on new meaning for us.
Having written of the German Bible studies with Karl and Marga Krones in our last newsletter,
the news should still be somewhat fresh in your minds! We, including several of the Maas mechelen
church folks not only helped Krones find a home near here, but also helped them move from Whopertal,
Germany; took up two offerings to help them financially until work could be secured; provided some
groceries and canned goods; and loaned a bicycle until their car could be repaired, after helping
find a jobl Henki continued holding weekly Bible studies with them all this time, and they faithfully

attended church services; while we all hoped and prayed they would see that our "deeds were as good
as our doctrine," as someone has said. Oh! that they would be convinced of accepting His way,
which we had all chosen.

Then April 15 Henki came home from a study with the news that they had decided to accept

Christ, and be immersed the following Sunday. What rejoicing, and what an appropriate way to
celebrate the resurrection of Christ on Resurrection (Easter) Sunday! So, the Good News was spread,
and there was a joint service in Genk for the Happy Day! It had been over two years since there had
been any added to the church in Maas mechelen so there was good reason for such gladness.
The joys of Easter didn't stop there, Karl and Marga invited us and several others of the
church to join them for Easter dinner. Though nothing was actually mentioned, we were made to
think of how Lydta "constrained" and "besought" Paul and his companions to stay at her home if they
judged her to be faithful to the Lord. (Acts. 15-16) Especially in a land where there aren't church
pot-luck dinners, and seldom do folks invite each other over for a meal, it seemed a sign of Krones'
happiness in belonging to the family of God.

An Easter egg hunt at Ma and Pa Bopnaerts' is how we brought the day to a close. Some
adults helped the kids eat the eggs found, and we had good fellowship with several Christians from
Genk and Maas mechelen churches over pie and coffee! It was surely a day to remember, from the
early morning hours until the sun had set! (+ )

Easter Monday (also a Holiday in Belgium, called Passover Sunday and Monday holiday) was
also spent in a special way. The non-instrumental churches in Holland usually have a special joint
meeting to which Belgian Christians have also been invited. This year we rented a bus (with Wadek
- our accordion player-driving, as he is a 'professional bus driver' and was able to make arrange
ments with his boss for a bus for us) and made the trip to Den Haag with about 28 folks from the Genk

and Maas mechelen churches. It was good to share with a large group for preaching services, panel
discussion, classes, refreshments and fellowship. It was (+) a rather long trip just for one day, but
it was well worth being with brothers and sisters in Christ for the day, getting to know each other a
little bit better!

(+) See 'Bits 'n Pieces 'o News" for another big event of the dayl


Bits 'n Pieces 'o News

- A Financial Statement has been prepared, and will be sent to those who have made donations in
1975. Anyone else desiring to see this, or know more of the income and expenses of Boonaerts in
Belgium, please write McDonalds at the Forwarding Address, included in the letter head,

- Just before leaving for church Easter Sunday morjilng Dennis (Messimer) phoned to share the GOOD
NEWS of the birth of their second daughter, Sharoi^ Dianne. She was born earlier that morning in

front of the hospital, in the car - - something vve always thought should only happen in the movies! I

Linda and her new daughter are doing fine, and H^ndi (Sharon's two year old sister) has already
pulled the buggy over to be sure her baby was all riijhtl I Messimers continue working with the
church on the Air Force Base in Kleine Brogel, anq with the new church in Houtehalen-East near

Genk. Services have not as yet begun in "their" tjown, as they are still trying to make contacts, as
well as get their home remodeled to be able to use for services in the future. Please be praying for

- Henki has been spending much of his time in Genk, He finds it much more conducive for study
in the quiet church, that is also centrally heated. He's not interrupted so often by visitors and the

children as at home, so will probably continue thisj commuting several times a week until we are able
to build extra room and can have a study-office hero at home,

- The Saturday Bible Study classes, that were starteiJ in preparation for preacher training continued
to completion. There had been sickness and other interruptions this spring so several classes had to
be cancelled. They continued a few weeks longer to make up for the lost time. Interest seemed

to dwindle for awhile, but class was back to its usudi 7 to 8 students before completion time. Such
concentrated, long-term studies are a new concept among churches in Belgium, so prayers are needed
for the success of these lessons for leadership in the churches!
- Narration to be used with filmstrips for showing in home Bible studies has also been keeping Henki
busy. These need to be made into both German and Flemish (Dutch, or Netherlands) so it is double
work trying to find someone with a good reading voi ce, and who has time for this extra work. It
was greatly through use ot tilmstrips that Karl~^n^ arga were able to visualize teachings while they
learned of the New Testament church and God's pi 1 for salvation. They have already proven useful,
so we hope the time spent preparing them will be ^ essed as others may come to know of Christ and
His way of life.

BELGIUM FOR CHRIST is written by Mary Esther ^onaerts; edited, printed, and mailed by John and
Eileen McDonald. It is distributed to inform and encourage support of the work being done in Belgium
for Christ by the Henki Boonaerts family. All funds made payable to Pontoon Beach Church of Christ,
designated to Boonaerts work are tax deductable.

Pontoon Beach Church of Christ

4039 Pontoon Road

Non-Profit Org,
U.S. Postage

Granite City, Illinois 62040

1.8<;: Paid
Permit No. 237

Mission Services

Box 177

Kempton, Indo ^049



John McDonald

2213 Dawn Avenue


Granite City, I]]lnois





Melvin & Louella Roller

Route 1, Box 92
Bumettsville, Indiana


Henki Boonaerts
Louis Mercierlaan 135

Maiy Esther

John Mark



James Matthew


1976 t



Mother used to say one of the hardest things she found in being a missionary in India was
having to turn her kitchen over to a hired cook, and other household taks to the ayah and other
hired help. I never could understand how that would be hard. Subconsciously, I tried to prepare
myself for the adjustment, always thinking I would return to India as a missionary. After we got
married, and I was still taking classes, we were working to pay our way through College, and we
had our first child I longed to try it out and see if it were as hard as mother used to say I As the
years went by I got used to and almost enjoyed, peeling potatoes, scrubbing floors and the other
duties of mother and wife. Then Maria came to stay with us. I could almost instantly understand
what mother meant! Maria was always asking for something to do. Something to keep her busy. I
had quite a time finding things I could give up to let her do. Somehow, we seem to get so wrapped
up in our work that we think we can do everything better ourselves. Besides, I felt, I must keep
enough chores for the boys to help them learn responsibility, feel secure and approved.
Being the only girl in a family with three brothers I always hoped for a sister. Finally, I
consoled myself with the hope that I could have my own sister when I got married. But the Lord
had other plans for us, and we have two sons. I wouldn't trade them for the world, but somewhere
down deep inside I still longed for that '' sister"! Then Maria came to live with us. We called her

our daughter, but at age 88 she is our sjster-in-Christ. She was immersed into His family while

the congregation was still meeting in Boorsem. Her family could not accept her "turning her coat
around", as the expression goes in Belgium of one who changes "religion", since she found no
other family to take her in, we decided to do our best, and have been blessed.
Several years ago I anticipated the arrival of a friend of mine to come from the States to help
in our mission work. Excited plans were made to and out tracts, and witness as two Christian
ladies together. (Most of the members.of the Maasmechelen church are elderly widows or young

teenage boys, so companionship of my age and sex were lacking). This didn't work out and, of
course, I was disappointed. I couldn't understand how it could be God's will. Then one of the
young men married, and I hoped to find in his bride the companionship I longed for and needed.
This, however, was also not the case. Several years went by, and we moved to our present home
in Eisden, Maasmechelen and still no one to fill that emptiness. Then Maria moved to live with
us. In a strange way, not at all as I thought, she has been able to fill that emptiness. She, too, is

an elderly widow, but young at heart, and willing to learn and share her new found life in Christ.
We are able to make several visits together to other women, some who she knew before she
became a Christian, and we read and study the Scriptures together. She never learned to read, so
is very "demanding" on my time. Often she asks me to stop from my business to rest awhile and
read something spiritual for her. Obviously it has been a great time for spiritual growth for us

Yes, God answers prayers often in such strange ways, and in his own time plan. Sometimes
by answering one prayer, several others are answered at the same time. This has certainly been
the case with the coming of Maria to live with us. We have a "built in babysitter" so Henki and I

t Please note the year of this issue AND the last should read 1976! Our praise to our "new
correspondence agents" in having only made this one mistake, that we know of, in preparing
their first newsletter for us! As you see, we have gotten behind in correspondence, so hope in the
next few months to get caught up, in one way or another. Please be praying for this situation, and
be helpfully patient. A kind Christian thanks from us all.

Non-profit Organization
U.S. Postage

Medaryville Christian Church

Box 140, South Jefferson Street
Medaryville, Indiana


MedaiyvHle, Indiana
Permit #4

U.S.A. 47957

H/H BiU McGilveiy

Box 177

Keisptony Xnd 46049


BELGIUM FOR CHRIST is written by Mary

Esther Boonaerts; edited, printed, and mailed

by the Melvin Rollers. It is distributed to inform

and encourage support of the work being done in
Belgium for Christ by the Henki Boonaerts
family. All funds made payable to Pontoon
Beach Church of Christ, designated to Boonaerts
work, are tax deductable.


GERING visiting her sister Lena (2

years older) last summer in Nijmwegen, Nether

lands. Maria came to live with us a few months

are occasionally able to go calling together, to do some of the mission work as a team instead of
always one or the other, while someone stayed with the children. She has been giving tracts,
church papers and New Testaments around to many in our neighborhood; something we had long
hoped to "get to someday". She has all the time in the world for this and lives having something
to keep her busy as well as the opportunity to share her Christ. When the weather doesn't permit
outside walking, working in the garden, etc., she occupies herself with dishwashing, mending,
(something which always seemed to stack up as I never seem to find time for that, though I'd

rather sew than cook any day. Cooking has to be done, and mend, somehow, could just wait),
mopping the steps, cleaning and peeling vegetables and being an active, loving member of a
family with playful boys. Of course, there are enough odd jobs for the boys. Some of these we
rotate or all pitch in to get done. But everyone seems to have adjusted well to our new family life.
Since she is officially registered in the town hall as living with us, we are making appropriate
additions in our building addition by making an extra bedroom with the kitchen-garage complex
now that Maria has come to live with us!!








emptied their savings container one

day to see how much they could give
to help with our new building. Es
pecially John Mark has shown
concern for having space enough to
hold Bible studies in our home so

more people can learn about Jesus


and he lets us know about it In his

own way! Sometimes children in

their innocence and determination
can be a lesson to us adults.




2 6


In preparing this last number of the 1976 news, we will deviate a little to wrap up loose
ends, to cover a few bits of news that otherwise have not been reported. We hope in this way to

help catch up on the over due newsletters, trying to get the 1977 news on the way.
The GOOD NEWS that couldn't wait in our first 1976 letter, had an upsetting sentence

we'd like to clarify some here. That sentence read, "It had been OVER two years since there had
been any added to the church in Maasmechelen, so there was good reason for such gladness."
Unfortunately, this is one discouragement faced by most workers for His kingdom in Europe, we
have discovered. Comparing notes with work in Germany, Italy and neighboring countries, we
see, sometimes, waits of nine years before immersions take place. Then in ones and two, not tens
and hundreds. This is not a sign of defeat or inactivity but of the "rocky ground needing much
cultivating" found in many European countries.

Giving an over all idea of the work being done in the Limburg province surrounding
Maasmechelen, Genk and Houthalen-East,"we wantio include this report. By way of introduction

to your new brothers and sisters in Christ, we list the names of those immersed since our return in
1974 or just before. Since they are not directly results of our work, or included in our present
efforts, we probably won't mention them again, except as they become involved in our immediate
evangelistic/nurturing labors. We hope you will uphold them before Our Father. The interchange
between the three congregations is such that we often share trials and joys so mutual spiritual
maturity is being reached as we live scattered, members of the same family in God.
Those added have been Karl and Margriet Jacubka (husband and wife, other so indicated

by h-w); Lena Vreven; Eva Boonaerts (youngest daughter of Boonaerts family); Anita Melatso;
Dennie and Roza Cartuyvels (h-w); Alfons and Caroline Boelen (h-w); Benjamin Boonaerts (last
of Boonaerts family to become Christian!); Freddy and Chantal Rothiers (brother and sister);
Patricia Jacubka (daughter of above h-w); Margriet van den Berg; Antoina Presotto; Rozine
Presotto (wife immersed several months later); -Lucia and Flip Kortzorg (immersed before

married); Frankie Kortzorg; Marcus and Greta Van Laeken (immersed before married); and
Lydia Jacobs. (These are listed more or less in order of their immersion in the three year time
One last bit of news that has to do with the three congregations is a report of our two day

discipleship conference held in 1976. We met in the largest of the three meeting places, the Genk
"mother church's" building complex for a blessed time of worship and fellowship. A Saturday
evening meeting, followed by an all day Sunday affair including the morning Lord's supper, noon
meal, informal discussion-interchange period; evening Bar-B-Que and closing service. Possibly
the highlight was putting into practice what we learned concerning discipleship/following. The
combined collection was sent for the work of Mary Esther's parents, William and Jean Roland, in
India. We rejoiced in this time of sharing and look forward to something similar in September,


May 10,1977, marked the official beginning of our building addition. We had the blueprint
made in 1974-75, so were required to at least begin the building within two years for the plan to
remain valid. Several hinderances kept us from beginning last year. We are greatly REJOICING
in being able to announce we have begun this year!!
The official beginning entailed raking away gravel from the proposed site, receiving

delivery of the cement blocks and bricks for building and staking out the foundation poles during


area where the kitchen, garage, and

bedroom are being staked out. Following
newsletters will hopefully carry more

pictures and articles of the progress of

our home-building.

Our back lawn has a nice blanket of grass

where the boys can play with their friends

and we can sit under our pussy-willow
tree on hot summer days. We also enjoy a
lawn in front of the house with several

flowers and a vegetable garden further

behind the house and proposesd addition.

the week of May tenth. It was an exciting time and everything seemed to go so fast at first!! Now
it seems everything is dragging and it has become a time and patience consuming process. At the
time of writing, the walls are ALMOST high enough to put on the roof. We are just hoping and
praying to be able to have everthing dry for the winter, even if it means only plastic sheeting for
windows and no plaster on the inside walls!!
Of course with the building there are many extra expenses, so we have had to make a
revision of our budget. Considering the building expenses as a raise in the cost of rent, we will be

needing $120.00 more monthly, there are several other added expenses with the increase in the
cost of insurance and the average increase in the general cost of living. There has also been an
apparent decrease in our donations so we are required to pay U.S. Social Security, AND it's
equivalent in Belgium as well, which is a development of this (1977) year. Any extra gifts to help

in any of these areas (if you want to designate, please so indicate on the gift, otherwise they will
be used as we need) would be greatly appreciated. For detailed information, contact Boonaerts at
the Belgian address or Rollers according to the addresses on the letterhead.
We hope enough extra support will be received within the next few months so that Henki
will not have to supplement our income again by having to return to the coal mine or look for some
other job. We covet your prayers and help in any way possible, knowing that as we work together
for His kingdom, the bonds of love are strengthened.

BELGIUM FOR CHRIST is written by Mary Esther Boonaerts; edited, printed and mailed by
the Melvin Rollers. It is distributed to inform and encourage support of the work being done in
Belgium for Christ by the Henki Boonaerts family. All funds made payable to Pontoon Beach
Church of Christ, designated to Boonaerts work, are tax deductable.

A QUICK SNAP after work but before

showers while Henki (center standing)

still worked in the Eisden mine from

1974-76. The work itself isn't too bad, as

far as Henki is concerned; but two full-

time jobs is TOO MUCH for anyone, we

hope you'll all agree. Please help keep
the support coming sufficiently to keep us