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The Lufkin Mission
In April 1983, Brother June received a visit from a Lufkin couple who was interested in opening a ministry to young street people in Lufkin. They had been referred to GODTEL for information and possible help in getting started. Many comments and inquiries had been made throughout the years by various Lufkin individuals and agencies about the possibility of GODTEL opening a mission in Lufkin. This inquiry, however, became the motivation God used to get the Gentry’s and GODTEL’s Board of Directors to make plans to expand the ministry to Lufkin.

With the able help of Christian friends in Lufkin, a location was found and arrangements were made to purchase the old Pineland Nursing Home at 323 Moody Street. The property was ideally suited to the needs of a shelter for the homeless with three buildings situated on a one-acre lot close to the downtown Lufkin business district. GODTEL Ministries took possession of the property on October 1, 1983 and operated for the remainder of the year with only one full-time staff member.
During the early months of 1984, God supplied a temporary staff family and a single part-time staff member who lived there to help keep things under control. Very soon the number of people staying daily at the Lufkin mission surpassed the number staying at the Nacogdoches mission. The ministry was greatly blessed in the summer of 1984 when God supplied a full-time, permanent staff family – Brother Ron and Dannie Hughes and their two daughters.
With the ministry growing, some reorganization of the staff became necessary. Brother June and Nancy had been running the ministry as a whole, as well as overseeing both of the missions. The Board of Directors decided to create the position of Mission Director at each mission. At this time, Brother Mike Jones was named Mission Director of GODTEL/Nacogdoches, and Brother Ron and Dannie Hughes became Mission Directors of GODTEL/Lufkin. Brother June was named Executive Director of GODTEL Ministries. Since 1984, Brother Mike Jones and Brother Ron Hughes have gone on to do other things. Currently, Martin and Mary Baker, who were a part of the original staff, are the Mission Directors of GODTEL/Lufkin.

God has repeatedly demonstrated His ability to bless beyond anyone’s ability to imagine. In 1984, the T.L.L. Temple Foundation granted the GODTEL/Lufkin $30,000 to be used to pay off one bank note, to reduce the principal on the building note, to pay one year’s mortgage payments, and to carry out some much-needed renovation to the Lufkin property.
In January of 1985, a grant of $15,000 was requested from the Temple Foundation to pay another year’s mortgage payments and to conduct further renovations. Even this would not have been enough to pay for all the needed repairs. The main building needed a new roof and all three buildings needed to be replaced with more cost-efficient units. Porches and steps needed to be built, ceilings damaged by the leaking roof needed to be replaced, and everything needed a fresh coat of paint. God once again proved His faithfulness. The trustees of the Temple Foundation voted to pay off the entire indebtedness on the Lufkin property at a staggering total of $72,006. With this burden relieved, the regular contributions, together with some donated materials and labor, could be used for the repair projects. Believe it: God answers prayers and meets the needs of His children!

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