Rick and Becky Luth and their four boys recently moved to Tanzania, East Africa, as partner missionaries with Christian Reformed World Missions (CRWM) to teach at Haven of Peace Academy.
The academy, located in the Tanzanian capital of Dar es Salaam, serves more than 290 children in grades K-12 whose parents are missionaries, full-time Christian service workers, or local or international businesspeople.
The Luths earlier spent four years in Papua New Guinea with Wycliffe Bible Translators. For the past seven years they worked in San Diego, Calif.
“I met the director [of Haven of Peace Academy] at a conference,” Rick Luth explained. “They’d been praying for an art teacher who could challenge kids’ faith through art. . . . I was impressed with the vision of the school—they’re teaching servant leadership.”
During the conference the director asked Luth to apply for the art teacher position. That evening he went home and asked his wife, Becky, what she thought about moving to Tanzania to teach.
“Sure, sounds cool,” she replied. “Do they have good surfing?”
After much prayer and thought, they decided to try to go. A year later they visited Tanzania. By January 2008, the school accepted Rick Luth’s application and offered him the job. All that was left was finding the nearly $5,000 per month in support they needed to raise.
The Luths turned to Wycliffe Bible Translators for support and endorsement. Wycliffe agreed, but they still needed additional financial support.
“My dad called up the Sunday after we had only had three people show up to our partnership-building events and we were just tired,” Becky Luth said. “He said, ‘CRWM is partnering with Wycliffe . . . you need to get in touch with them.’”
When the Luths got in touch with CRWM, they found a partnership agreement already in place. “We are giving them support in fundraising and an $8,000 grant if they need it,” said Steve Van Zanen, director for missions mobilization with CRWM.
“We’re committed to a minimum of four years, but we’re open to anything and we’ve sold everything,” Rick Luth said.
Partnerships such as this are one of the ways God enables organizations like Wycliffe and CRWM to do ministry around the world.
—Mariano Avila III is communications manager with Christian Reformed World Missions.