Missionary Stories

Take care of these things

Honduras_-_Westra_Spr_2017_pic1.jpgA lot of people were now becoming followers of the Lord. But some of the ones who spoke Greek started complaining about the ones who spoke Aramaic. They complained that the Greek-speaking widows were not given their share when the food supplies were handed out each day.

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We are thirsty. "Give us water to drink."

Nicaragua_-_Salley_Spring_2017_thumb_IMG_1025_1024.jpgExodus 17:2

During this Lenten season as we focus on our relationship with God, I would like to provide you with the opportunity to examine how our Nicaraguan sisters and brothers of the Moravian Church focus on their relationship with God.

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Listen to the Trees

Mexico_-_Huegel_Spring_2017_IMG_1650.JPGAs I was setting up my new house in San Cristobal de las Casas, I listened to an audio book I had wanted to enjoy for a long time.  The following passage caught my attention:

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Acompanamiento

Paraguay_-_Casillas_Spr_2017_LIDERESAS_(2).jpgEl Chaco Paraguayo, lugar de tierras desérticas, de grandes extensiones de tierra roja, con Bosques de Palmas “Karanda´y” termino Guaraní, donde el sol, de radiante esplendor, sonríe en cada amanecer para acariciar la campiña que se levanta, al Indígena en su búsqueda del pan diario, al Campesino luchador y a los grandes Hacendados calculando sus ganancias sin mirar la necesidad que hay a su alrededor.  El Chaco Paraguayo que tantos hablan de él y que pocos conocen.  Es como si fuera parte de la lejanía extraña, sin darse cuenta que son sus hermanos y hermanas paraguayas, con otras necesidades y realidades. Oramos para que este pueblo indígena pueda continuar luchando en medio de las injusticias, la pérdida de sus tierras y quebrantos de salud, podamos continuar apoyándolos, acompañándolos y solidarios en medio de sus realidades de vida.

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Creating Bonds of Friendship

Ecuador_-_Yan_Pardo_Spr_2017_pic1.jpgThe experience of being in Ecuador has been great, a magnificent opportunity to put love and knowledge into action. This country has everything. Its multiculturalism is admirable and each ethnic group maintains its customs and traditions. There is a lot to learn from Ecuador.

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A Success Story

Ecuador_-_McKinney_Spring_2017.pngI arrived in Ecuador in November, 2016. My first few weeks were spent learning the history of FEDICE and getting to know the general work and mission of the organization. FEDICE (Fundación Ecuménica por el Desarrollo Integral, Capacitación y Educación or, in English, the Ecumenical Foundation for Integral Development, Training and Education) works predominantly with indigenous people in rural communities in the Andes mountains to empower and to break the cyclical chains of poverty, discrimination, and injustice. Easier said than done, right? In the case of FEDICE, wrong! FEDICE has worked for over twenty years to bring about real change in rural communities and they have made a huge impact on the communities they serve.

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Where there is Smoke, There is Fire

Mexico_-_Huegel_Mar_2017_DSC_0033.JPGWith pungent spice burns the resinous heart wood of the Montezuma pine, "ocote" in Spanish, drawing us round the Mayan altar.  We gather, Christians and those who profess no faith, Tseltales, Tzotziles, Europeans, Mexicans, United Statesians, Canadians, and Lebanese, called by the smell, the smoke, the candles, and the flowers into sacred space.  We pray for awakening to  peace in the midst of the political crisis and government sponsored violence, we pray for courage as the diversity of the environment disappears around us, we pray for justice in communities devastated by migration, alcoholism, drug trafficking.  We pray for the people of the United States to have the courage and perseverance, the wisdom and strength to stand in dignity, as the Mayan have stood again and again, over the centuries, bending under oppression, but not breaking, resilient and resistant.   With each prayer we turn, East, West, North, South.

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Greetings from Bogotá

Greetings from Bogotá. Writing this first newsletter of the year is a great chance for me to take stock of the past year and what I am looking forward to in the year to come. Let me start by thanking each of you for joining me in this journey and giving me support along the way.

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¡Saludos de la República Dominicana!

DR_-_Reynolds_Spring_2017_20170118_150737_(2).jpgServicios Sociales de Iglesias Dominicanas (SSID) has been working in the Dominican Republic since 1962. Now with programs and initiatives in Haiti, communities throughout all of Hispaniola benefit from the ministry of SSID. With a team of regional directors and local area leaders, SSID is able to fulfill the biblical call to care for the poorest of the poor. Whether policies or governmental support is available for the people is no matter. SSID recognizes the need to fulfill God’s desire to care for one another.

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Getting Settled in Chiapas, Mexico

On my first morning in the bunk room at the Institute for Intercultural Study and Research (INESIN), the organization I will be working with in the city San Cristobal de las Casas, state of Chiapas, México, a familiar buzzing sound greets me on my way to the bathroom.  I veer off course, hunting through the flowers, my eyes flicking back and forth as I know I will only catch a glimpse of the sound-maker.  It is there and then in an instant, gone.  The sound disappears.  A hummingbird has welcomed me to the city and to this new life.

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