Welcome to TaiwanMinistry.org
Dear Pastors, Partners & Praying Friends,
If you have been following our prayer letters, then you know God has been blessing the church plant in Taiwan, Victory Baptist Church, that we started this past March. It is still a very young but growing church. We are excited about all God is doing and will do through this church, and Lord willing, many more to come!
One of the unique differences between ministry in China and Taiwan is not only that I have been granted a missionary visa but we also have the opportunity to purchase a church building. God has now given us the opportunity to purchase a building/land for our church plant, and we want to take advantage of this opportunity.
With this open door before us, we want to boldly walk through it. Our desire is to reach the Taiwanese people and leave a lasting church to preach the gospel. In preparing for this, we are raising funds for the cost of a church building. We are thankful for our partners who support us on a monthly basis and our praying friends, but now we are asking for you to consider a one-time love offering of any amount ($100, $250, $500, $1,000, or more) to help us purchase a church building.
After surveying our area, we are needing to raise around $250,000 to purchase what we need for a church building. The local church here is a giving church and they are saving money every month. The cost might seem high, but we are committed to reaching into these Asian megacities that might seem unreachable. We are reminded our trust isn’t in man, but we are trusting God every step of the way.
The one-time love offering will help go towards purchasing a building for Victory Baptist Church. Will you be willing to give a one-time love offering of however much the Lord leads towards this church building fund? Your one-time gift will help us, Lord willing, secure land and a building for Victory Baptist Church as it is busy evangelizing the lost and discipling believers. Of course, a gift of any amount is greatly appreciated. I pray that you will prayerfully consider partnering with us to see the need for this new church building funded. Will you be an extra blessing to this church with a one-time love offering?
We know that we couldn’t do anything without the help of God’s people. All gifts and love offerings of any amount can be given online, TaiwanMinistry.org, or sent to Vision Baptist Missions, PO Box 442, Alpharetta, GA 30009 with a note in the memo: “Tolson – Victory Building Fund“. Thank you for giving, praying, serving, and being a part of our team. We are especially fond of you! Let us continue pressing forward and keep fighting the good fight. May we strive every day to know Jesus, to be happy in Him, and to make Him known!
In His Joyful Service,
HOW MUCH HAVE WE RAISED SO FAR?
Taiwan Building Fund:
- $32,061 of $250,000
- 12.82% of 100%
“VICTORY BAPTIST CHURCH” BUILDING FUND T-SHIRT
“Victory Baptist Church” Building Fund t-shirt is a fun way to help support the building fund of Victory Baptist Church in Taoyuan, Taiwan. With each shirt purchased, you are donating $10 towards their building fund! The front of the shirt is the church logo and name in traditional Chinese characters and the back is a Bible verse (1 Corinthians 15:57).
CHURCH PLANT UPDATES
JUNE 2021 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Fifteen Months Old
- Last month, as I was writing our prayer letter, there was news that the epidemic situation in Taiwan had entered community transmission. Up to that point, Taiwan had been blessed during this pandemic, with the virus almost being none existent on the island. Unfortunately, that news was true, and a semi-lockdown soon followed with restrictions on churches, schools closing, no in-person dining, and a limit on how many people can meet together inside and out, etc. In fact, it was announced that “Persons who violate the ban on large gatherings and religious activities, or enter venues that are supposed to be closed, will face fines of between NT$60,000 ($2,166) and NT$300,000 ($10,832).”
- This semi-lockdown slowed down hosting more events and doing more evangelism this month. Before the semi-lockdown: we had a successful mother’s day service with serval visitors and a family event afterward; we had just launched a new English corner event for young people; we had a guest preacher from our teammate’s, John Walz, ministry; also, we had just started and seen results from an advertising campaign in the housing complex behind the church. But then everything had to be stopped or moved online, which hasn’t proved to be very fruitful thus far for outreach ministry.
- The church plant quickly pivoted to online for our Sunday morning services. We are thankful that all of our regular attendees have been able to stay connected through this means as we worship, give, pray, preach and fellowship online. Also, my wife and another Sunday school teacher from the church have made Sunday school available to the children by recording a video for them to watch online. On Sunday afternoon, our family took craft supplies and goodies to their apartments for them to do and enjoy. The families then took pictures of their kids doing Sunday school “at home,” which was a huge encouragement. Even though it is not the ideal situation, we are thankful we can still make an impact.
- The church plant slowed down since Chinese New Year in February—many take off work for the holidays, traveling, etc.—and we have taken the opportunity to get many things in order in our own lives. Still, things are starting to pick back up now as we are looking forward to hosting more events and doing more evangelism this month. But as I am writing this prayer letter, there is news that the epidemic situation in Taiwan has entered community transmission. Up to this point, Taiwan has been blessed during this pandemic, with the virus almost being none existent on the island. Please be in prayer for the success of our outreaches and wisdom if the epidemic advances any further.
- On the first Sunday of this month, we had the Adam Walz family with us. Adam filled in for me on Sunday morning as I was out preaching at another Baptist church. Pray for their language studies.
May 2021 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Fourteen Months Old
- Praise the Lord two of the three children who made professions of faith at the Winter Camp in January were baptized on Easter! One of the children was the daughter of the first man baptized in our church plant.
- Praise the Lord that we have seen consistent giving towards the Taiwan Building Fund each month. The church people are humbled by the generosity of others!
- I am consistently studying with two different men. Pray for the Lord’s guidance as they have shown a possible interest in ministry in the future. Also, pray that God will give us young men to train for the ministry. We desired to see multiple churches started and men trained for ministry.
- Many of the church folks have mentioned how they have grown over the past year, and we are excited to see this growth. We desire for this continued growth in the Lord and as they serve outwardly.
APRIL 2021 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Thirteen Months Old
- The first Sunday in March marked our one-year anniversary. Praise the Lord for planted a church in the midst of a pandemic.
- I am currently studying with two different men, one-on-one, who might be interested in ministry in the future. Please be in prayer for them and their families.
MARCH 2021 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Twelve Months Old
February was a slow month for the church plant because of Chinese New Year. Many took off work for the holidays and thus traveling to see and be with family. We were excited to visit families’ homes and have many in our homes as well.
The church is continuing to give to faith promise and supporting four different works.
FEBRUARY 2021 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Eleven Months Old
- Praise the Lord that the church plant is eleven months old. We have seen God do so much in this short amount of time. We started with just our family, and now there is a small local church trying to reach its community and supporting gospel efforts in other places! Pray as we continue to follow up with the many visitors. Also, pray for our official registration with the government to go quickly and smoothly.
- The church collected its first “Missionary Faith Promise Offering” this month, and the monthly amount promised was $392 a month or $4,702 a year! Amen! We currently support three national pastors in China and are looking to take on a national church planter here in Taiwan.
- The church hosted its second “Day Camp” but it was the first time to do so over the winter break. The Victory Winter Day Camp was our best camp yet. There were new and old workers from the church and a missionary family helping out. We had about 23 campers. (We had 30 or so register, but several canceled over concerns from the virus.) And praise the Lord, there were three professions of faith during this week.
- We also had our largest crowd at the church on “Camp Sunday” with around 56 in attendance.
JANUARY 2021 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Ten Months Old
God is moving in our midst! Praise His Holy Name! December was packed with celebration and progress.
- Our Sunday morning average attendance is continuing to increase month-after-month.
- We relaunched our Sunday evening services (previously canceled in June).
- Victory hosted its first baptism and first Lord’s Supper.
- Another soul was saved in my wife’s Bible study group on Tuesday mornings. Lives are being changed and transformed by the gospel.
- For the church, I am preaching and teaching about an average of five times a week right now (Sunday school, Sunday morning service, Sunday night service, Thursday morning discipleship, Thursday night men’s group).
- We had our first missions Sunday, where I taught the church about faith promise. Lord willing, we will be receiving those faith promise cards in January.
- In December, we had 11 first-time visitors.
- The church paid all of its bills and gave $492 to missions and another $533 to their building fund in December for a total of $3,153 to date (in just three months)!
DECEMBER 2020 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Nine Months Old
November was our first “full month” back at the church plant. I was able to preach every week and had a blast doing it! During the week, we also have two small groups (Tuesday and Thursday). I lead a men’s group, and my wife leads a women’s group. Both have been doing very well. Not only that but because several are learning about the gospel for the first time or are new Christians, we have several one-on-one Bible studies to work around their schedule until they get saved or grow in Christ and learn the importance of church attendance. Some saved recently are hoping their work schedules can change in the near future as they learn to adjust their culture to fit a life of following Christ and all that it entails. Pray for these young believers who are learning what it means to follow Christ (some with opposition from family) and for those who are still considering the claims of the gospel.
- This month we also had 10 first-time visitors and a total of around 121 visitors since the church started in March.
- The church paid all of its bills and gave over $527 to their building fund in November for a total of $2,620 to date (in just two months)!
NOVEMBER 2020 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Eight Months Old
On the 11th of October, we were able to fully resume our positions in the church plant and I preached that Sunday morning. It was wonderful to see so many familiar and unfamiliar faces. We are excited about what God is doing in bringing people to our church. Since our return, there have been 5 souls saved at the church! Not only are we seeing souls saved but church attendance and offerings are all trending upward! Also this month, we just launched a fundraising campaign for purchasing a building for the church plant here in Taoyuan, Taiwan. The local church here is a giving church, and they are saving money every month—they have already given $2,093! Will you prayerfully consider getting involved?
OCTOBER 2020 REPORT
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Seven Months Old
Praise the Lord, since we left, it seems beside the many visitors, there has been one new family who has been attending faithfully. We are excited to be able to meet them this month. I am thankful for all the missionaries, national pastors, and pastors in training that were able to preach at the church in our absence. Our three ongoing prayer requests: (1) the salvation of the lost; (2) the discipleship of the saved; (3) a band of young men to train for ministry!
SEPTEMBER 2020 Report
Church Plant Update | The Church Plant Is Six Months Old
In our absence, the Lord is continuing to bless Victory Baptist Church in Taoyuan City, Taiwan. Attendance has held steady, and there have been many new visitors over the past month. Over the past six months, the church has had about 105 visitors. Please continue praying for the salvation of the lost and the discipleship of the saved! Also, we are praying for God to give us a band of young men to train for ministry to take the gospel to the world!
Moreover, in our absence, we are thankful for the Taiwanese believers who have stepped up and taken responsibilities to lead their church. We are also incredibly grateful for the missionary family who graciously lead the church over the past month. For this month, they turned over their responsibilities to our teammates, who were able to get out of quarantine after arriving in Taiwan. We are also thankful for the many preachers (missionaries and nationals) who have gone and preached at the church on Sunday mornings.
AUGUST 2020 REPORT
Church Plant Update | Our Church Plant Is Five Months Old
Last month, we successfully moved Victory Baptist Church to Luzhu District in Taoyuan City. The Lord blessed as we took this step of faith, and our average attendance was higher in our new location than any of the previous months—averaging around 22 on Sunday mornings (including our family) in July. Also, over the past five months, we have had a total of 79 visitors. Pray for the salvation of the lost!
After having such a great month of growth and ministry, we were saddened to have to leave because of our current visa situation and the COVID-19 restrictions. Another missionary family has graciously agreed to lead the church in our absence, and many preachers are lined up to go and challenge this young church plant. We are also excited about those attending, taking on more responsibilities. Please keep praying for continued growth and edification—all for the glory of God!
JULY 2020 REPORT
Church Plant Update | Our Church Plant Is Four Months Old
“Adjust, adjust, adjust” is one principle I was taught as a teen by my youth pastor. And it seems to be the theme for our lives over the past year. This has also been true for the church plant. After praying and talking it over with those faithfully attending, we have decided to move the location of the church plant. It will be about an 8-mile move (driving) which is far in city terms and will be in a new district and city. The Lord has already provided a new location for us to meet in. The church will now be located in Luzhu District in Taoyuan City. This location will be much more convenient for almost everyone who is attending faithfully and will be close enough for those taking part in our small groups in that area to also start attending on Sundays. We are very excited about this move and the potential to reach more people as this new area is much more densely populated.
Over the past four months, we have had a total of 52 visitors. Also, in June we had a “Friend Day” and averaged around 19 on Sunday mornings including our family. Please pray for the church plant as there will be another missionary family taking it over while we are in the States applying for our visas.
JUNE 2020 REPORT
Church Plant Update | Our Church Plant Is Three Months Old
We have now completed the third month of our church plant. We had around 17 first time visitors in the month of May. We had a high day on Mother’s day of 30 people in attendance with 12 first time visitors. We have also been trying to figure out the best times for our services, as we desire to give everyone around 3 hours of “meeting” time each week. After changing the times a few times, we finally have a schedule that seems to be working. Currently, we meet one hour on Sunday morning for Sunday School and Adult Bible Study, plus an hour for our Sunday Morning Worship Service, and then one hour for small groups during the week. Over the past three months, we have had a total of 40 visitors, which is about an average of 13 a month. Also, we are averaging around 15 on Sunday mornings including our family. We praise the Lord for this continual growth! We ask that you keep bringing the following two requests before the Lord on our behalf: (1) the salvation and discipleship of those coming; (2) young men to reach and train for ministry.
MAY 2020 REPORT
Church Plant Update | Our Church Plant Is Two Months Old
We have now completed the second month of our church plant. We had around 8 first time visitors in the month of April. We had a high day on Easter of 22 people in attendance with 3 first time visitors. Besides our family and visitors, we now have around 6 who are faithfully attending every Sunday. We are still limited in some of what we can do, but each day we are taking more liberty as people are more at ease and willing to attend different outreaches, etc. Please keep praying for: (1) the salvation and discipleship of those coming; (2) young men to reach and train for ministry.
APRIL 2020 REPORT
New Church Plant Update | Our Church Plant Is One Month Old
We have now completed the first month of our church plant in this unusual time. We had over 15 different individuals visit the church. Around 8 of those 15 have come more than once, with a few coming regularly. Because of our current situation (visa and virus), we have been limited to some of the outreach ideas that we have, but Lord willing, we will be able to do them in the future. The church was also blessed financially this month with two special offerings and the normal offerings in the services. We were blown away. Please keep praying for the salvation and discipleship of those coming. Also, be praying as we seek young men to reach and train for ministry.
MARCH 2020 REPORT
New Church Plant Update | First Service: Sunday, March 1st, 2020
By the end of last month, we completed the following: the glass door on the store front was installed; all the chairs were purchased and delivered; our signs and banners were designed and installed; Bibles were purchased; songbooks, tracts, invitations, flyers, etc, were all printed and ready; around one-thousand invitations were distributed and we sent invites out through social media and different internet websites. Thus, on Sunday March 1st, we had the first service of Victory Baptist Church, New Taipei City, Taiwan at 10:30 AM. We had two Taiwanese visitors who were both unbelievers and a missionary friend show up. Sunday evening at 7:00 we had our second service and we had a family of four attend, who also were all unbelievers. Praise the Lord I was given liberty to preach the gospel at both services. Pray for the salvation of these six Taiwanese souls! This soft launch of the church plant means that we are starting regular services three times a week. We are excited about seeing many souls reached with the gospel and many churches planted here in Taiwan. We can’t wait to lead our first soul to the Lord here in Taiwan. Please be praying as we are giving the gospel out!
FEBRUARY 2020 REPORT
New Church Plant | Victory Baptist Church, New Taipei City, Taiwan
As we finish our setup and make the final preparations for our upcoming church plant, we are excited about what the Lord is going to do. We have rented a building, paid the deposit, one month’s rent and the realtor’s fee. We won’t be able to use the building for services until the 20th of this month, but we are excited to hopefully be holding regular services by the end of this month or the beginning of next month. Our flyers and tracts are done being designed and are now being printed. Our next immediate material needs for this church plant are: (1) Door—the location is a new store-front and we have to install the glass door; (2) Chairs—we need 30-50 chairs or stools; (3) Signage—we have two signs above the location that we can use for church advertisement.
Spiritually, we need you to pray for the following: (1) Family—our church planting team consists of the Lord and my family of seven. Pray that we can stay unified in the Lord as we enter this stage of spiritual warfare. Pray for the health of our family. (2) Evangelism—Lord willing, I will be spending a lot of time out inviting people and trying to share the gospel with the local people. Pray for boldness and for hearts to be prepared and Holy Ghost conviction as the gospel is spread forth. We can do nothing without the Lord. It is His church. (3) Language—pray for clarity in the language as I preach, my wife teaches and as we share the Word of God in the Chinese language. (4) Men—our goal is to train young men for the ministry, thus pray that God will give us a harvest of young men who are willing to be trained up in the Lord and serve Him full-time. (5) God’s Glory—pray with us that in all things we will glorify God and that the planting of this church will give God more glory as lost sinners turn from their wicked ways to saving-faith in Him through Jesus.