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October 1, 2005
October Update

Greetings from the Rocky Mountains where a colorful, crisp, fall day is giving way to clouds and possible early snow.  Melva and I just returned from a week in California where we met with 350 pastors, missionaries and workers from around the world for a time of encouragement and challenge.  Our good friends at Horizon Christian Fellowship in San Diego had invited us to join them at their “Huddle” and we were finally able to attend.

Fires and Blessings in the midst of Hurricane Katrina: In September I fought fires outside of Grand Junction, CO and then spent two weeks in Laurel, MS helping clean up after Hurricane Katrina.  Laurel is inland and had missed the terrible flooding but thousands of trees had blown down.  Our team was responsible for clearing over 400 miles of roads and trails so that residents could get to work, go to school and attend church.  I drove down and was able to carry some canned goods and clothes from Christians in Gunnison.

While in MS I held a chapel for our workers and one (along with a possible second man later) trusted Jesus.  I was able to give away all our firefighter Bibles as well.  I met a local Forest Service employee I had given a Bible to on a previous assignment and he was enthusiastically using it.  Your prayers and support allow us to go into these harvest fields.

Before I left MS, I drove through the small town I spent 8 years in as a child.  It was a Sunday morning and I walked into my old church.  Before the morning was over they had asked me to sing in their choir during the service. (They probably just wanted to cover my work clothes with a choir robe).  And, I had lunch with my next-door neighbors from 45 years ago!  The Lord is so good.

College Ministry: We’re still running 60 or more each week and our leadership team is doing a great job.  Melva and I train them, and they in turn run the meetings at the college and high school.  We currently have 6 students in our weekly “Called to the Ministry” group.  Your daily prayers under gird us and provide the materials for these programs!

Family:  Melva is recovering from a two-week infection and slowly getting stronger.  She’s been substitute teaching a lot.  Joy and Stephn are enjoying Scotland and Bible College.  Bekah is visiting friends in TX for a month before returning to Vail.  Steve is working away in Gunnison and Tim is busy in his senior year at BIOLA University.

Finances: Thanks to the grace of God and your faithfulness, we’re caught up.  Please continue to pray for His gracious provision.  We are soooo grateful for the wonderful mix of those who have supported our ministry for over 30 years and those of you who have joined us recently.  Thank You!  We love and appreciate each one of you.

Upcoming:  There’s still time for another assignment in the gulf coast region or fire.  We’ll be teaching evangelism in San Diego for a week in November, and our days are full with college ministry, preaching locally and preparing to start the doctorate some time soon. 

God Bless You!


Rick Barton Ministries • 401 Ute Lane Gunnison, CO 81230 • • (970) 641-3583