Dear Pastors, Churches, and Prayer Partners,
As I looked back in our files our first official prayer letter was dated August 10th, 2019. My has this world changed in those three years. It has also changed the Mallard family. By that I mean stepping away from pastoring after 15 years, selling our house, having an auction to sell most of our things, and beginning the process of contacting and visiting churches to present our burden for Australia. We have been able to be in many great churches along the way and meet some wonderful people. As I said in our last prayer letter when I surrendered to go to Australia 3 years ago there was what was called a Religious Visa that allowed permanent residency. That path is no longer available. The one they offer now is only good for two years and can ’t be renewed. Also the sponsoring church has to be a ‘Government Approved’ church. This was confirmed to us by a migration attorney in Australia as well as 4 pastor/missionaries that are also in Australia. The work visa option we have been working on is not proving to provide a path either. I contacted all the pastors/ missionaries I know of on the Western side about 6 months ago to see if they could provide any contacts for me in the HVAC / R field and haven’t received any response. It seems that the doors are closing for us to get to Australia. I don’t feel I misread the will of God 3 years ago. It is been made clear that our time at Emmanuel Baptist Church was finished and God burdened my families heart for the Australian people. Even today I don’t feel that it’s God that doesn’t want us there, but that the Australian culture and Government is becoming more and more resistant to the Gospel. So what now? With the leadership of the Lord and support of my pastor we are going to refocus our efforts to plant a church in the states. We will still be sent out under the authority of Berean Baptist Church. There have only been two places that the Lord has burdened my heart for and that is the Southeast part of Missouri and Australia. With the doors closed to Australia the Lord has laid Poplar Bluff, MO on our hearts. During our deputation we spent time in this area visiting family. The Lord began to open my eyes to the need and burdened my heart for there to be an Independent Fundamental Baptist Church in this town. Poplar Bluff is a town of about 18,000 that services probably more like 30,000. There is only one Independent Baptist church on the north side of town. It would be our desire to look for a meeting place on the south and west side of town. We will begin this transition at the end of August with hopes of having our first services in January of 2023 if not sooner. I want to thank those that have prayed for us and have supported our family financially. I would ask that you continue to pray for us and if the Lord leads supporting us financially as we seek to plant a church in southeast MO. If you have any questions about this matter please reach out to me. I considered calling all of our supporting churches but thought this was the best way to let all know at the same time. Then if our supporting pastors wanted to contact me they could do so when their schedule allowed. Again thank you for your support of our family during this time of transition.