Catechism for Life: Pless Teaches in Taiwan

Catechism for Life: Pless Teaches in Taiwan

Luther’s Small Catechism guides the Christian life. Prof. John T. Pless from Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Indiana shared this message with Lutheran pastors and laity in Taiwan. He and Dr. Michael Paul, missionary to Taiwan, also distributed free copies of his book Handling the Word of Truth which was recently translated into Mandarin.

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Askins in Asia April 2018 Newsletter

 The children getting Goat Milk from a new friend in Taiwan. 

The children getting Goat Milk from a new friend in Taiwan. 

So Much to Say . . .

He is risen! Blessed Easter to you all! The last eight weeks since our previous newsletter have been filled with adventure, surprise, sorrow, joy, and much more. You'll hear about some of those things in the newsletter linked below.

However, I want to share some other important announcements:

First, I'm writing to you from a new location. I've included a picture of the address below. Don't worry, you can still write the address in English, and it will make it to us . . . hopefully. While we have moved, but we're still transitioning. We have taken on a fairly significant load of Chinese instruction; we're also learning a lot about Taiwanese food and culture.

Second, I want to share our home service plans. Usually, every other year, LCMS missionaries return to the USA to reconnect with donors and shore up support for the next two years. We should have returned this Spring; however, our move prevented us.

Here's the plan: I will return to the states for a short home service this October while Eliza and the children will remain in Taiwan to finish language instruction. I will visit those places where we have support, but it's more difficult or expensive for the entire family to visit (mostly along the East and West coasts). Then, in the Spring of 2019, the entire family will return to primarily those places where it's easier for us to travel.

So, in light of this announcement, three other notes:

  1. Please stay tuned at the website for more information on Home Service. I have a series of posts that will discuss home service and how you can support missionaries on home service.
  2. Please let me know if you'd like me to visit in October. Once again, I'll be primarily on the East and West coasts for this trip.
  3. Finally, if you're in Texas, Colorado, or the midwest, please mark your calendars for a visit from the Askins Clan in the Spring of 2019!

Finally, please watch this website and our Facebook page for more stories about work in Asia. Here's one you will enjoy:
Once Broken; Now Healing
As always, thank you for your support. Through your prayers and support, we have been able to support the proclamation of the Gospel throughout Asia. Please download this month's newsletter and share it. Post in your narthex. Forward this email to friends. We appreciate it.

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Blessed Resurrection of our Lord to you all.

— the Askins


Our New Address

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Don't worry. You can still write the address in English and your mail will get to us! 

Thank you for your support. 

Askins in Asia February 2018 Newsletter

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Greetings in the Lord Jesus Christ. 

May the Lord be with you during this penitential season. 

First off, this newsletter is late due to my travels to India. However, after you read this newsletter, I think you’ll find the delay was worth it.  

Please print these newsletters for the narthex at your church, or wherever you regularly gather. If you have any questions or comments, please let me know. 

Also, I want to draw your attention to another opportunity. Recently a new button appeared on the LCMS website. It’s the “Where Needed Most in Asia” button. If you’re able and interested in supporting the proclamation of the Gospel in Asia further, please consider using the “Where Needed Most.” Gifts of these type enable us to place the funds—that’s right, you guessed it—where we need it most. 

Thank you for reading, supporting, and praying. 

In Christ, 
— the Askins

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Please support us as we proclaim Christ and him crucified to the people of Asia. 


Please consider supporting projects in the Asia region by giving where support is most needed. 

The One Constant

 A Picture of our New Home in Taiwan

A Picture of our New Home in Taiwan

The One Constant

Often it’s said that change is the one constant. As the people of God, we know this is not true. Only the One who changest not—despite the “change and decay in all around I see,” as the hymn says—is constant.

This issue of the Askins in Asia shares some of the changes coming down the road for us in Hong Kong. And while there is certainly pain in change, God also works through change to provide us opportunities to share his love with the world. We look at these changes with excitement and joy at the new opportunities God is giving us. 

While we will be changing the place where we lay our heads, nothing else changes. I will continue to serve as Communications Director for the Asia region; we will still homeschool the children; Christ remains the Lord of his church—and for that we give thanks.

Thank you for walking with us on this road to share Christ. Please consider sharing our newsletter with friends and family. 

In Christ, 

Rev. Roy S. Askins

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Askins in Asia November 2017 Newsletter

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Time to be Thankful.

We've got so much to be thankful for . . . and that's what this edition of the Askins in Asia is all about. Roy talks about why he's thankful for 12 years of marriage, and Eliza and the kiddos discuss their thankfulness for the great gifts of God. Read, enjoy. And please, share. 

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Thank you for your support, as always. 

— The Askins


Askins in Asia October 2017 Newsletter

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How to Celebrate the Reformation

It’s the Reformation Edition of the Askins in Asia newsletter. We’ve got a number of special of news items. First, Eva Maria makes her first contribution to the newsletter. She wrote about how she and her siblings celebrated the Reformation while Dad was in Papua New Guinea. For my part, I wrote about the opportunity I had to share the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation with Lutherans in Papua New Guinea, and what we really celebrate when we celebrate the Reformation. 

If you’d like to hear more about the work in Papua New Guinea, please listen to this recent podcast hosted by me. Dr. Dicke, missionary and theological educator to PNG, spoke about Pr. Philip, a Lutheran in PNG who has some very complicated work ahead of him. 

While you’re at it, subscribe to the LCMS Asia podcast. You’ll be hearing more from Dr. Dicke in the future. 

Pastors and secretaries, as always, please print off copies and put them in narthex or mailboxes. Please share them far and wide. 

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Thank you for all your support. 

In Christ, 
—the Askins


We depend on a network of supporters to proclaim the Gospel in Asia. Please consider joining our network by offering a recurring gift. If you have any questions, please send us an email.


Askins in Asia September 2017 Newsletter

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Feeding God's People

Last month, I witnessed the Lutheran church body in Sri Lanka re-form and ordain their first new pastor in the last decade. I’ve shared some more information and pictures about the great event in this edition of the Askins in Asia. Eliza talks about what it's like to watch the local children head to school while we school at home. 

Pastors and secretaries: As always, please print the newsletter and leave it in your narthex for parishioners to pick up and take home. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to send me a note. 

Thank you for your support. We couldn't do it without you. 

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In Christ,

— The Askins



Askins in Asia: July 2017 Newsletter

Listen In to Learn More

If you didn't know yet, the LCMS Asia region has a podcast hosted by yours truly. If you don't know what that is, don't worry. I explain it in the newsletter this month, and show you how to listen in and subscribe. 

We're also in the rainy season of Hong Kong. So, Eliza talks about how we cope with all the water—we play in it! 

Pastors and secretaries, please print these off and put them out for people to see. Also, please forward this email to your congregation so they can follow the links to listen to the LCMS Asia podcast. 

In the meantime, here is the July issue of the Askins in Asia newsletter: 

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Thank you for your support. 

In Christ, 
Pr. Askins


The LCMS Asia Podcast


Here are the podcast links to the LCMS Asia podcast. I talked about three episodes in the newsletter; here are the links: 

Rev. Antonio Reyes, President of the LCP
Rev. Chuck Hoffman talks about International Church Ministry
Rev. Dr. Henry Rowold and the Chinese Edition of Luther's Works

You can listen on your computer by clicking play.

OR, you can subscribe through the podcast app on your iPhone.


Support the Askins in Asia

We're always looking for more supporters. Use the button below to join the network. 


Askins in Asia: June 2017 Newsletter

Our Nearest Neighbors

June has come and gone. May was filled with travels; I spent June working from Hong Kong and being there for my family. So, the focus of this month’s newsletter is the mission field in my own home. My article discusses how tempting it can be to neglect this mission field, why it’s necessary, and how we are evangelizing our nearest neighbors. Eliza’s article, “June For Father” talks about the joys and struggles of being mom in the pew while dad preaches. 

As always, please distribute and share this newsletter however you can. If you have any questions or would like me to cover a particular topic in the newsletter, send me an email. I’d love to answer your questions. 

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We are also looking for opportunities to connect with congregations through video chats. We have done a number of presentations by video chat with supporting congregations. Typically, we arrange the presentation during the Sunday School hour, however, we can certainly present at other times as well. If your congregation is interested, please let me know. 

We finished this fiscal year without significantly increasing the deficit on our account. We still have a significant debt from the previous year, however, and we hope to erase that debt this year. If you’d like to know how you can help us. Or just click the "Support the Askins" button below. :-) 

Thank you for your prayers and support. 

In Christ,
— Pr. Askins



Askins in Asia: May Newsletter

Confessing Christ in Foreign Lands


Over the last month, I traveled to several countries in Asia to support the teaching of the Book of Concord. Everywhere we went, pastors and lay people gobbled up the teaching of the Lutheran faith and asked for more. I enjoyed the privilege and opportunity to support these souls hungering for pure spiritual food. 

Also during May, a number of friends came and spent time with our family. Eliza discusses how encouraging and helpful their support has been for our family. 

Thank you for supporting us. As we near the end of the fiscal year, we still need additional support to make our end-of-the-year fiscal goals. Please prayerfully consider joining our Mission Sender network using the prayer card attached to this newsletter. 


Please also prayerfully consider speaking to your congregation about supporting us as a Together in Mission (TIM) congregation. I often do presentations via video chats with congregations across the United States. Please do not hesitate to send me a note if your congregation might be interested in hearing and seeing about our work from the mission field. 

Thank you again, and God’s peace be with you. 

In Christ, 
—the Askins

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Askins in Asia: April Newsletter

Thank You for Walking With Us

Thank you for walking with us on this journey. Because of your support, I have seen and supported Christ’s work throughout Asia. 

In this newsletter, I provide an honest update about our support network, the joys and the challenges. We have a strong network, and yet, we still have work to do. Even though we have not significantly overspent the donations we have received, we still do not have enough support to completely fulfill the budget needs, and we’re carrying a deficit from the previous year on our account. See the newsletter for more details. For opportunities to offer support, see the “Give Now” section below. 

During our time here, Eliza started a bookclub for home school children. She talks about it in her article this month. As usual, there are pictures and the prayer card at the end. Please keep Eliza and the children in your prayers as I will be traveling from May 8–28 to five different countries in the region. 

Pastors and church secretaries, please print the newsletter and share it with the congregation. If you have any questions or would like more information, please reply to this email. 

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As always, thank you for your support. 

In Christ, 
Rev. Roy S. Askins


An Opportunity


We'd like to start sending paper mailings to congregations. At this point, we have a volunteer who is willing to stuff and mail the newsletters. At this point, we're looking for someone who could print color copies and pass them along to be stuffed and mailed. If you would be willing, please reply to this email and let me know. Thank you!


Walk with Us

Please consider partnering with the LCMS to support our work. As we draw near to the end of the fiscal year, now is a particularly important time for us as we are a bit behind on support, and we have a deficit from last year. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to send me a note. 

Thank you for your support. 

Supporting our Partners

 At the conference in the Philippines

At the conference in the Philippines

Supporting our Partners

God's blessings be with you this Lent. 

Last month, I traveled to the Philippines to assist with a regional consultation. The Lutheran Church in the Philippines and other churches throughout Southeast Asia gathered together to discuss the best ways to proclaim the Gospel. It became clear to me how much our role as missionaries is not so much direct proclamation of the Gospel, but providing tools and means for our partner churches to reach out into their own communities most effectively. 

Over the last few months, we have also started learning Mandarin. In her article, Eliza discusses how even though learning a language can make us feel like fools, God does not see us a fools but redeemed and forgiven children. 

AND, in case you missed is, there's a link below for a video I did with the kiddos earlier this month. Enjoy. 

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As always, thank you for your support. 

In Christ, 
— The Askins


Walk with us in this adventure. Use the button below to go straight to the LCMS website and support our work. Thank you. 



Lumps of Life

— by Eliza

Sometimes there are bumps in the road and lumps in your life.

Raising children brings around plenty of mysterious bumps, bangs, and bruises. Some of those require ice others a bandaid while many go unnoticed and untreated because life just keeps going.

Many times the care of the bump is conditional of the audience and surroundings. Do we want to stop playing, do we want to wait at the doctor's office, do we want to give up our time doing something else to check the bumps and lumps? 

Not usually.

But sometimes we need to stop. We need to cry a little to clear out the eyes and release the adrenaline. We need a kiss to end the sting. We need a bandaid for out of sight out of mind.

And every once and awhile we need the doctor for a cream, stitches, or more thorough investigation.

Thanks to the great physician for providing care for the bumps and lumps of life. He knows there will be plenty whether they are physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual. But in Him there is rest and peace.

Askins in Asia: February Newsletter

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Lion Rock

February, The Short Month

As Eliza noted in her article, February is the short month. And it got past me. The newsletter is a few days late, but it's finally here. It has taken so long because I've been working on a project to help NSM missionaries raise awareness of their work. Thus, my article is about the NSM model and what it means. Keep your eyes peeled for more soon. 

Pastors and secretaries, as always, please print the newsletter and post it in the narthex. If you have any shut-ins, please also consider taking a copy to them. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to send me a note. 

Thank you for all your prayers and support. 

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Sincerely,
—The Askins


Use the button below to send financial support directly through the LCMS.org website. Otherwise, the newsletter provides more information as well. 

Blood is Thicker than Water

— by Eliza

You’ve heard it said before that blood is thicker than water.

This saying reminds us of the bond we have with our blood family. We don’t choose family; those individuals are chosen for us. They are a gift from the Lord that cannot be given back. We learn from our grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles, siblings, and cousins. We are also protected and supported by them.

We said good bye to those teachers and guides when moving to the mission field. Despite the water separating us, the blood still binds us, and we communicate in various ways.

But we have been further blessed in the field by water that binds us with another family.

The family of Christ supports and teaches us here in its own way as well as filling the voids. It is through the baptismal waters and even the gracious blood of Christ that we have the gift of an even larger family. Our children have grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins here in this place.

No they are not blood relatives, but they are blood-and-water relatives.

We are fortunate that other missionaries come through Hong Kong regularly. Those people have opened their arms to our children. They’ve sat at our supper table listening to chatter about the latest read or newest lego creation. Those people have read a picture book or listened to a blooming reader on the comfort of our couch. They’ve kept watch as we all maneuver public transit or settle in the chairs of the sanctuary. They’ve sung the hymns of our church boldly with little voices.

And for all these things my children beam with joy when any of them visits because it is family gathering together united in the blood and water of the Lamb.

Because yes, Christ’s blood is thicker than water.

When Dad Travels

— by Eliza

Dad travels monthly. Sometimes it is a long weekend and other times it is as much as 2 weeks.

It is not easy to say good bye. It is not easy to wait for his return. But, we are learning with each trip the lessons God would have us learn in this our vocation as missionary family.

We are not alone.

We are blessed to live in a building with other missionaries. We are blessed to have additional missionaries in the city. We have also made friends in the area. There is help with childcare, meals, and more.

Plus, we are learning to have a different routine when Dad is gone. We are also learning to be a support system for each other. Big sister and big brother help little sister and little brother. 

Mother learns flexibility and then teaches that as well as school to her children.

And when Dad returns we have so much to tell about the places, people, and projects we’ve studied and visited.

It’s not easy, but it is also teaching each of us that our Lord Jesus is holding us in His arms. He is traveling with Dad and He is staying home with us.

We are His. He has called us to this life and He is giving us our daily bread.


Askins in Asia: January Newsletter

Epiphany Edition

In this newsletter, Pr. Askins speaks briefly on Christ's Transfiguration. Then he covers the events of the last year. The long and short of it: Christ has enabled him to serve in this way through you who have chosen to support the LCMS in this work. So, thank you. 

Eliza shares some reflections on the Chinese new year and what the new year has in store for us as a family. 

Pastors and secretaries, please print off copies of the newsletter to put into the narthex and share with your members. We greatly appreciate it. 

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Thank you again for your support. Please let us know if you have any questions. 

Blessed Epiphany, 

— The Askins