Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Imagine This!

Imagine two churches: 
one is in a rural mountain village in western Honduras,

the other looks, more or less, like your church.

Now imagine:
that a family from your church . . .

sponsors a child - or several - though a program which
the Honduran church runs as a ministry to their community;
helping with the nutritional, educational
and spiritual needs of at-risk children.

And NOW imagine what would happen:

if families and individuals from your church were to sponsor all of the children in that particular Honduran church's sponsorship program!

 What if:

we found a way to combine our efforts?

Can you imagine it?

The bond that would be created between your church, and a dynamic, young church in Honduras, which is committed to reaching their community for Christ? The things you could accomplish for Christ, in partnership?

  • Praying for one another. 
  • Assisting one another. 
  • Encouraging one another.

The Sister Church Sponsorship Program: reaching the uttermost parts of the earth, together!

More information, on how your church can become a part of this exciting new program, click here!

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Exciting New Thing #4: Sister Church Sponsorship Program

Earlier this year, I wrote about some exciting new things that were happening in our ministry. I even made a logo for the three posts, as that clearly shows that I am taking these things seriously, right? See? --->

But, out of the blue, we find ourselves developing an additional new ministry project! If you missed the earlier posts, you can find those at these links:

#1 Manna 4 Lempira
#2 Sustainability 4 Pastors
#3 Restarting Pastor Training School

Today I am announcing the new Sister Church Sponsorship Program, which is another opportunity for people who aren't called to come and live in Honduras to participate in ministry with us here! This is actually a spin-off of the Manna 4 Lempira Sponsorship program. It came into being when a friend of the ministry thought it would be great to get his whole church involved in sponsoring children . . . leading to the thought that his church could potentially sponsor all of the children in one specific location where we have a feeding program . . . which led to choosing a church . . . and that particular church is in a location which desperately needs a bridge to be built . . . so perhaps the church in Florida could send down a team to do a bridge-in-a-week construction project . . .

Well, I think you get the idea. This is more of a general idea than a set-in-stone "here's how we do it" ministry program. In a sister-church relationship, the opportunities to serve would be varied, based on the needs of the church (and its community) and the ability of the other church to help. I believe all of the Honduran churches in the program will be set up with child sponsorship opportunities. Other ways of potentially helping a sister church might include

- helping the pastor attend pastor training school
- financing (or coming down as a team to help with) construction projects for the church
- helping the church acquire instruments and/or a sound system
- helping the church develop ministries to reach out to their community
- helping church members develop children's programs

It is our goal that this be a project which will build up the young churches in the mountains of western Honduras, helping them to grow, expand, and minister to the people around them.

Pastor and congregation outside their church in San Miguelito

I will say this here, to avoid misunderstandings . . . there are going to be some limits on what kind of help, and in what quantity, we will encourage churches to give. We have seen, over the years, that a relationship between a wealthy church or organization and a significantly less wealthy pastor or church can create problems. We don't ever want to set up a dependency situation, and we always desire to point people toward God, as their source of help . . . not rich(er) churches! This can be awkward, tricky, and complicated. It will be an important aspect of this program, that the churches involved be willing to trust our knowledge and experience here, to guide them in making wise choices in this process.

Will we make some mistakes along the way? Oh, yes, I imagine so. Does this have the potential to be something really great? I think it does!

If you'd be interested in hearing more about this new ministry opportunity, to develop a sister-church relationship with a congregation in western Honduras, we'd love to chat with you about it. Contact us at trish @ and we'll talk!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

We run a bookstore! Who knew?

Our little Bible bookstore has been a part of our ministry for almost ten years now - but it is rarely mentioned on the blog or website. It's not especially glamorous or exciting, but it has been quietly serving the community here all this time.

The store consists of about four large bookshelves, sitting in the front room of Russell and Iris' house. Casual businesses being run out of homes are very common here, so we fit right in with all the small household shops. The store is open when someone is home, and closed when they are not. Most often, Iris is the one manning the store.

The stock includes multiple versions and style of Bibles, study Bibles, commentaries, and a small collection of other Bible study materials. We price the books to cover the cost of purchasing them, so basically wholesale. Since there are no salaries or overhead involved, the money which comes in from the book sales is simply used to purchase more books . . . so this has become a more-or-less self sustaining aspect of our ministry.

Books are a rare, expensive luxury item in our part of Honduras. Many of the books we sell for around $20 are priced at $80 - $100 in the bookstores in the cities. Even at $20, one book could easily cost a pastor from a mountain village an entire week's wages, so we're delighted to have the ability to make these books available to them!

In the past, we have offered discounts on purchases at the store to pastors who attended the pastor training school or the occasional pastor training conferences which we have held. This year, the pastors who complete the school will receive, for free, several of the hefty "pastor's library" volumes which will be used as part of their school materials.

This little-known, not-especially-exciting part of our ministry is actually a valuable piece of the whole!

If you didn't know about it before . . . well, now you know.