Steps Towards our Move to Madagascar

On the day we left our home in France, many of our friends came to say "Au revoir!" What a blessing from God to connect with each of them!

A Note from David


      What a challenge and a privilege it was to study the French language! Overall, our year in France provided the following blessings: We all were able to build a solid foundation of French that has enabled us to communicate our needs, ask questions, understand much of what others are saying, carry on straightforward conversations, write in French, and read in French.
For example, I’ve enjoyed reading the Bible in French. It’s allowed me to view the diamond jewels of theology from different facets as I can dwell on the phrases and thoughts of Scripture from a new level. That’s been encouraging to me. On another note, we now feel like we can successfully live in Madagascar because we’ve been equipped in one of the two languages they speak. We will be able to shop in the grocery stores and begin to develop some relationships with the Malagasy people. What an asset this will be for our transition there!

      We’ve been back in the States about one month now and our schedules have been full since we arrived. One extra special blessing of God is that we have had lots of get-togethers with family. Besides time with family, we’ve been busy trying to find doctors and dentists for all six of us, which has been a challenge since no one seemed to be accepting new patients. By God’s grace, we found what we needed and have now all been seen for physicals and dentist appointments. We’ve been researching what vaccinations and meds we all need for Madagascar and for the next few years and trying to get those as well. We still have a number we have to figure out soon. 

      We've also been asking for advice from our partners and other missionaries about what items we need to bring over to Madagascar for life and ministry there. So we’ve been researching and purchasing items for that. We have recently started preparing those items to be shipped out in a container. This is a long and detailed process—pray for us!

      Our teammate in Madagascar, Faly Ravoahangy, has been working with a number of individuals to secure the required paperwork we’ll need to apply for our visas. We cannot yet apply anyway since Madagascar still has closed borders due to COVID. But we want to be ready as soon as they do open. We have been planning to leave in October, but this all depends on the will of the Lord.

      Every day, we thank the Lord for you. Your prayers have lifted us to the Throne of Grace. Your encouragement has warmed our hearts. Your generous giving has sustained us. Thank you for your participation with us in the gospel.
I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always offering prayer with joy in my every prayer for you all, in view of your participation in the gospel from the first day until now. [....] For God is my witness, how I long for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus.” — Philippians 1:3-5, 8
Gloire à Dieu,

Ministry moments before leaving France

This was our taxi van driver, Boris, who we had the pleasure of spending 2 hours with while David was able to talk with him about his state before God and proclaim that forgiveness of sins was available through faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ. Boris is from Latvia and grew up in the Russian Orthodox Church. Pray for his salvation.
This was one of our neighbors, Nyhad, originally from Algeria (her two daughters are below). We were able to have a number of conversations with her family in French, went to their home for a birthday party, have their girls over to our home, and we were able to leave them a Gospel tract and a sermon by missionary John Glass. Pray for their salvation as well.
Our girls became good friends and playmates with these neighbor girls. It was fun to see them speaking French with all of the kids nearby and at school.

Family News

When we arrived in Tucson, AZ from France, a number of family members were there to greet us for a joyous reunion at the airport.
Once we were back Stateside, we were able to return to Christ's Church of Tucson. It was so good to be back with these brothers and sisters in Christ.
Our girls have always loved our pastor here, Dr. Dale Briggs.

A Note from Ashley

Dear ones,

      No matter what the circumstances may be, God is trustworthy and faithful! Through all the ups and downs and unknowns, He continues to lead us one step at a time on this journey to serve in Madagascar. I thank God for allowing us to complete the year of language training in France (a huge asset!) and that He brought us safely back to the U.S. We had smooth travels getting back to Arizona in August and we were greeted at the airport by cheering family members. Reconnecting with our families has been a precious and sweet time! Our girls are soaking up as much grandparent and cousin time as they can before we leave again.  It has also been a joy to reconnect with our church family in Tucson where we were members for 4.5 years before leaving for seminary. Meeting with friends and supporters here in AZ has been a blessing.
God has provided our family with a home during our stay in Tucson where we have been spending most of our time preparing to move it…move it… to Madagascar.

      The future still has many unknowns and we do not know exactly how everything will come together, but God has been giving me His peace and a heart of joy and anticipation about our future in Madagascar. Thank you for being our partners as we follow the Lord in the desires He has put in our hearts to minister overseas—your prayers, support and encouragement are integral to everything we do in the strength that He supplies to His praise and Glory (1 Peter 4:11).
'Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to take Him at His Word
Just to rest upon His promise,
Just to know, "Thus saith the Lord!"
Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I've proved Him o'er and o'er
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!
In His love,

Praise Report:

  • Praise God that we were able to sell our car in France the day before we left.
  • Praise God for our safe travels and health since arriving in the U.S.
  • Praise God that He is sovereign over all the details and plans for us getting to MadagascarHis timing and ways are perfect.
  • Praise God for the progress we've been able to make in preparations.
  • Praise God for the blessing of getting to be with family and friends for this brief time.
  • Praise God for taking care of the needs and restoring health to our dear friends and ministry partners, the Ravoahangy family in Madagascar.

Prayer Requests:

  • Pray for daily growth in Christ-likeness and that we would walk by the Spirit through the many stresses of multiple moves and preparations.
  • Please pray for our visa paperwork to be ready by the time the borders open in Madagascar (they are still currently closed due to COVID).
  • Pray for us to correctly prepare everything for a shipping container.
  • Pray for all of the logistics we still have to figure out with moving to LA on Sept 30. 
  • Pray for us to be able to establish a wise family routine with the constant changes and moves.
  • Pray for our girls through more upcoming transitions and goodbyes.
  • Pray for our partners, the Ravoahangys as they minister in Madagascar during a very challenging time in their country and church.
All Glory Be to Christ,
David & Ashley, Isabella (age 10), Lydia (age 9), Anna (age 7), and Clara (age 5)

David and Ashley Ellingson
3827 E. Mount Kimball Pl.
Tucson, AZ 85718

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Ministry2Madagascar · 3827 E Mount Kimball Pl · Tucson, AZ 85718 · USA

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