“Entonces tomó los cinco panes y los dos peces, y levantando los ojos al cielo, bendijo, y partió los panes, y dio a sus discípulos para que los pusiesen delante; y repartió los dos peces entre todos.” Marcos 6:41Read more
Lectionary Selection: John 20:19-31
Prayers for Paraguay:
Thank you, God, for greeting us every day with the blessing of peace and hope that come with the risen savior.
We also give thanks for "Mision de Amistad" which is an arm of the Disciples of Christ Church in Paraguay, which founded the "Betty and Raymond Mills" Higher Technical Institute of Nursing career in 1966.
Today we ask that open doors and hope be with young Paraguayan nursing students, even when their economic situation limits them. The institute currently has 45 active students. Some students can not continue their studies because of low-income and lack of job stability. Many of them have suffered from the Paraguay River floods and have had to leave their homes and studios. We pray that we can develop a project of scholarships for these students who strive to achieve their goals so they can support themselves and their families. In the name of the Risen Christ we pray, Amen.
“For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building”
(1 Corinthians 3:9)
We are grateful to God for giving us the opportunity to be faithful collaborators of the work that God has with this Paraguayan land. Lands where there are an indigenous people who continue with their traditions, customs and dialects. Places where humble people who speak Guarani and Spanish, take mate and tereré. A people who experience a God of mercy in the midst of complex and difficult times, because the Lord’s presence fills us all with hope, confidence and trust that there are new possibilities and opportunities for the people and the Paraguayan communities. God cares for them and uses the people to continue to bless them in the midst of their daily realities.Read more
Genoveva Cordova Rodriguez Del Pilar
July 2, 1931 – January 26, 2016
September 21, 2012
In almost all of the churches in Argentina and Paraguay, communion is celebrated every Sunday. The churches are intimate enough that everyone comes forward to circle around the altar and we pass the bread and cup around the circle. For the bread, we wait until everyone has been served to eat all together. However, sometimes we remain seated, as you'll see in certain pictures. There is a real sense of welcome to the communion table, and a thorough-going spirit of belonging which I have found quite moving. Also, we sing as we approach the altar, and we also sing both while we are passing the bread and while we are passing the cup. There is a very festive component to communion here, lifting up our hearts in praise to God every time we approach the table.Read more
Lectionary Selection: Mark 4:26-34
Prayers for Argentina/Paraguay:
Thank you, God of life, truth and justice, we all honor and praise you. Thank you for the opportunity you give us to serve, to love and be supportive of these two peoples who have their own realities and idiosyncrasies. Thank you for the privilege of proclaiming Your Word on the experiences of everyday life in Buenos Aires in Argentina and Chaco in Paraguay, on the different places where you have allowed us to be. Thank God for the missionaries from the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ that preceded us 106 years ago in Argentina and 95 years in Paraguay; who sowed the seed of the Gospel, solidarity and love. Thank you that there was a faithful people who believed in the mission project and germinated seed and has borne fruit, and today we continue to see your intervention between them.
“Porque De tal manera amo Dios al mundo, que envió a su Hijo unigénito, para que todo aquel que en El crea no se pierda, sino que tenga la vida eternal” (Juan 3:16).
The moment has arrived to walk for the pathways that Jesus showed us. Streets, sidewalks, alleys and avenues. There are no limits; Jesus came to the world to show us that a new way of life is possible. The beauty of life in the pilgrimage of peoples and multitudes, along with their complexities, form part of the divine purpose. This Jesus that we knew formed us, called us and commissioned us. And when we refer to our commission we mean that, literally, God sent us. We simply arrived to new lands, new people, enriched by a fusion of two cultures and languages, Spanish and Guaraní. They are beautiful, special, happy people, enriched by a fertile land that literally produces milk and honey. This reddish Paraguayan land produces mandioca, batata, banana, milk, cheese and honey, corn, oranges, lemons, mandarins, mango and many more. God blessed this land with abundance of fresh water. The best gift that Our Creator gave to this beautiful land is that the whole country of Paraguay is settled above the Guaraní Aquifer System, the biggest subterranean source of fresh water in the world.Read more
When I first started telling people I planned to go to Paraguay to work with Global Ministries Partners, I got a lot of mixed reactions. Some people were excited, others were frightened, and some just thought I was a little crazy. The strange thing, I think, is that I had a mixed reaction too. I was very excited, very nervous, very frightened, and I often thought I was a little crazy.Read more
Lectionary Selection: John 2:1 -11
|Pastor Ana Ferrigno de Sargenti presides at the Easter communion.|
Prayers for Argentina and Paraguay:
O God of abundant grace, who causes dry springs to swell up, and who opens our hearts to wonder and joy, this week we give thanks for the deep faith of the churches of Paraguay and Argentina. We ask you to be with them, as they face many hardships. We give thanks for the life of Pastor Dora Imfeld, who now rests with you, and we ask your presence with her family and the church in Vedia. We ask your accompaniment also with the institutions of the Disciples in Paraguay: the Comité de Iglesias, the Campamento Jack Norment, the Misión de Amistad, and the Colegio Internacional. We thank you because you grant these churches your spirit not only to walk but to dance, not only to talk but to sing, not only to survive, but to flourish. And, in this season of epiphany, we pray you will bless all of our communities with your transformative laughter. In the name of all that is Holy, Amen.
Mission Stewardship Moment from Argentina and Paraguay:
What does it mean to celebrate church unity?
On September 29th, 2012, 450 Christians from all over Argentina and Paraguay gathered for the Day of Fellowship. There was no agenda, no list of goals, no hurry - the point was to be together.
At the wedding in Cana, Jesus performs a miracle in the spirit of celebration. Stone water jars, designed for purification, become the means by which we arrive at a fuller sense of grace. The week-to-week activities that each of us engages in are important and sacred. Yet there are also moments when we set it all aside for something grand.
And so, at our Day of Fellowship, we took time out from our daily challenges – and there are many here – to relax and remember who we are. We studied, prayed, ate, planted trees, and enjoyed our time together. People from the city got to know people from the campo; long-time church members became acquainted with newcomers; younger people broke bread with older people; Argentineans and Paraguayans played music together. And at the end of the day, each family took home a yucca cutting to continue the celebration of community
The Day of Fellowship was possible largely because of the commitment and generosity of DOC and UCC congregations, who do their part and more to meet God’s people and creation at the point of deepest need. For the Disciples of Paraguay and Argentina, this support comes as a blessing as they seek to learn, grow, and thrive together, and they are very grateful.
Thank you and may God grant you much joy in this New Year!
(Prayer and Mission Moment by James de Boer)
Mission Partners in Argentina and Paraguay:
- Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo
- Asociacion la Iglesia de Dios
- Colegio Ward
- Iglesia Evangelica Congregacional de Argentina
- Iglesia Evangelica de los Discipulos de Cristo en Argentina
- Isedet - Instituto Superior Evangelico de Estudios Teologicos
- Junat Unida de Misiones
- Movimento Ecumenico por los Derechos Humanos (MEDH)
Video Resources about Argentina and Paraguay:
More information on Argentina and Paraguay:
Global Ministries Missionary(ies) in Argentina and Paraguay:
James deBoer, a member of Central Congregational Church, Providence, Rhode Island, served a one year term as a Long-Term Volunteer with the Round Table for Mission Development of the Disciples of Christ Church in Argentina and Paraguay. He worked as a consultant for mission development.