God did not waste any time this summer with the start and finish of several projects! The lives of our team members and villagers were both impacted as God’s love was experienced by all. Here is a quick run-down on what was accomplished!
The children’s nutrition center is almost open for business, a water project was started in CocoLi, along with 22 outside bathrooms for each of the families there, and 2 churches with pastoral houses were built in both Guayavilla and Paraiso villages. We can’t wait to inaugurate both of them this fall. We also painted playgrounds, restocked our village clinics, and filled several of the mountain school kitchens with pallets of food supernaturally given to us. We also were able to start up our widow feeding program in the mountains again!
We were also able to give three brand new motorcycles away for our pastors in the mountain villages! They are the point of the spear for our ministry, as God is using them to lead us into new , unreached villages. We had interns and team members give their life to Jesus, some were even baptized in mountain rivers!
All in all, God was on the move! He never disappoints when we take hold of His hand as He says, “Follow Me!”
Summer Interns & Teams!
(Photo Below: It is always an overflow of joy with these children at the Zacapa Dump)
(Photo Below: Stepping into this little girls reality of digging for treasures, only to make her realize SHE is God’s treasure.)
(Photo Below: Giving away one of the three motorcycles donated, with the newly painted Children’s Nutrition center in the background!)
(Photo Below: Hiking through the mountains visiting homes, going to church, and loving on families. )
Our newest village, Coco Li!
Last fall we made contact for the first time with a village called Coco Li. We showed them the Jesus Film in their Mayan dialect, while administering medicine. Our friendship bonds continue deepen, as God provides ways for us to respond to their needs.
We have been able to begin a water project with them, bring in two community filters, as well as 22 latrine outhouse for each family! It has been amazing to watch their hearts open up to the Good News of Jesus, through experiencing His tangible love reaching out to them.
(Photo’s Below: Continuing the Water Project in Coco Li, along with 22 Latrines for each family!)
Church Plant in Plan de Agua Fria!
The most amazing thing has already happened in this village. Our local FIA pastors were thrilled that the first 6 couples who had given their lives to Jesus were baptized together on a Saturday and married on Sunday! Even though they have been together for years and had families, they wanted to make a commitment to each other before God and invite Him into their family foundation! Praise God!
(Photos Above: The first step to planting a church is starting a house church. This is the second step: building a temporary structure without walls where evangelism services can be held!)
Widow Feeding Program
“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.”-James 1:27
With some of our interns, we hiked to the widows homes to invite them to be apart of our program. We wanted to get their names, ages, and a photograph.
When we would ask them their age, several of them answered saying, “Ah, I have to be at least 30 years old.”
We would hold back a laugh and say. “Yea, most likely.”
This is a program we are thrilled to be able to re-instate in our mountain villages, thanks to World Challenge.
New Church in Paraiso!
First evangelical church in the history of the village, Paraiso!
We have watched for many years, the sun setting on this mountain range. We had no idea that there were villages there who had never heard the Gospel or had a Evangelical church there. The prayers of a faithful mother and daughter from that village has been answered this summer! Her village has received its first ever, church home.
Church inauguration in Paraiso!
The grand opening of the first evangelical church in Paraiso was a success!
The day started off with an 85yr old couple who wanted to get officially married before God, and their family! It was such a sweet example for everyone to witness!
In the kitchen, the women prepared the masa for the traditional tamales, which is wrapped in banana leaves and slow roasted over the fire. The traditional drink is burnt corn coffee with a lot of sugar. It is pretty tasty!
Several people who helped work on the building had a chance to share what God had placed on their hearts, and then Michael Beene (FIA founder) and a missionary who has joined the FIA team were able to share.
We ask you to stand with us in prayer for this new work. Pray that God’s Presence would be established in this region, that the Word of God would take deep roots in their hearts, and the Light and Hope of Jesus would be invited in to equip them with a passion to grow in His love, and also to spread His love to their neighbors and beyond.
We will be continuing to reach the families in the refugee camps near the volcano, Fuego, which erupted this June. There has been amazing testimonies from each of the families we have sat and spoken with. They share how they were brought to the realization that the reality of God, His goodness, and mercy, were ever present factors of life that they had been missing out on, until that fatal day!
The lady who ran the town bar and gambling shop, along with many other families who never followed God, all cried out to Him in the moment of lava flowing down their streets, and He answered them in miraculous ways.
We have not heard one story, of all the terrible tragedies, that has not pointed all credit, glory, and gratitude to God!
A Huge Thanks
To everyone who donated during the natural disaster in June, we thank you! It has been very hard to sit with these survivors and hear their stories, but very encouraging also. We will be scouting out land that the government is supposedly giving them, to then plan how we can be apart of rebuilding their lives!
Baby Phillips is in Route!
A whole new dimension is about to be added to our life as our little girl, the third-generation missionary, will be arriving early November! Many have asked us if anything will change with her coming onto the scene.
The way we see it is this: we are in Guatemala because God has called us here. He has provided for us every step of the way, and anything He adds to our life, be it material or be it a little person, it is not to take us out of our calling, only to bless and bring us further into it! God has been faithful through our single years, ever present in our marriage, and we have no doubt will be hands-on in even greater lengths helping us raise this little girl on the mission-field!
(Photo Above: One of the teams hosted a surprise Baby Shower for us one evening at the dorms! It was such a fun night of games, guessing baby facts, and opening gifts!)
As you can probably tell we are extremely excited for where God is leading us and for every heart that will be touched by His love this year!
Thank you again for your constant prayers and support!