The Lord Has Done a New Thing!
Meet my fiancée, Tabitha Odediran. A native of Jacksonville, Florida whose family comes from Nigeria, Tabitha is a World Team Cameroon South missionary appointee, just like me. She is 26 years old, and a graduate of Florida State University. She is intelligent, witty, and fun-loving. She loves the Lord and has a passion for Bible translation in Cameroon. 
The Lord brought Tabitha into my life in November of last year. After her vision trip to Cameroon in January, I decided to pursue her for marriage. We began dating on March 13, and were engaged on May 24! We will be married on August 8 in Tallahassee, Florida, where she lives. Needless to say, we are very excited about this new thing God has done in our lives. It has been a bit of a whirlwind, but we wouldn't change a thing. Rejoice with us!
This wonderful new development will bring with it some adjustments in our plans to get to Cameroon. As of now, we have stopped actively seeking new financial partners until a year into marriage (August 2016). We are grateful to World Team for giving us a year to focus on building our marriage relationship together. World Team has invited us to attend RACE, their candidate conference, in July 2016 as a married couple. Tabitha and I have both gone through RACE as singles before being invited to join World Team and appointed to serve in Cameroon. However, we will need to be assessed as a couple for our readiness to go to the foreign mission field. We trust the Lord to speak through World Team, and we expect them to affirm us as a couple and approve us to restart support raising after RACE in July 2016.
This means an adjustment in our timeline. Although the short term goal has changed, the long term goal of spending our lives serving in Cameroon remains the same. Also, although we are not currently seeking financial support, Tabitha and I do need your continued prayer support. You will continue to receive email updates chronicling our journey towards Cameroon. Please continue to pray for us!
I'm sure this new development raises some questions in you, my faithful supporters. Let me address a few of those questions. 
How will this affect my timeline?
World Team, Tabitha, and I are committed to focusing on enjoying our upcoming marriage, and to building a strong foundation that will serve us well in the future, even as we continue to prepare for Cameroon. On top of enjoying marriage and starting a family within the first year, we are also committed to studying biblical education and linguistics for Bible translation (Tabitha) and studying the French language (myself). All of these preparation elements need to be in place if we are to be equipped to serve well. We are currently in the process of making a plan with World Team and the leadership of our sending churches, and we prayerfully plan to arrive in Cameroon by the end of 2018.
What will happen with the funds I’ve raised?
The funds that I’ve raised will be held by World Team for us to use when, Lord willing, Tabitha and I begin financial support raising again in August 2016. If you are a financial partner, rest assured that your gifts will be held by World Team until that time. 
In the meantime, World Team and I have decided to stop collecting your financial gifts, both on-going faith promises and one-time gifts, until Tabitha and I restart support raising in August 2016. Therefore, we ask you to hold on to your financial gifts until we pick up the financial side support raising again next year. Until then, we suggest that you set your gifts aside and submit them to World Team at the right time, which we will communicate to you. To cancel your EFT payment, click here to contact World Team.
Be on the lookout for more updates as our plan develops, and please pray for us in the following ways:
  • Wedding planning and pre-marital counseling.
  • Wisdom as we lay out a plan to begin our family and equip ourselves for ministry in Cameroon.
  • Transitions: I’ll be moving to Florida in early July, and Tabitha and I will move back to Louisville in December. Pray for those transitions, and for jobs in both cities for us both.
  • Our Cameroon Teams: Pray for current World Team missionaries on the field in Cameroon to be strengthened to continue the work.
  • God’s work in Cameroon: Pray for healthy churches that glorify God among the Baka and Bakoum tribes in Cameroon.
Thank you for walking this journey with me, and now with Tabitha and me. The future is exciting, and Jesus Christ is still the hope of the nations!
For the Sake of His Name Among the Nations,
Richie and Tabitha