In the July 2017 newsletter from the Interchurch Center for Social and Theological Studies (CIEETS) in Nicaragua, the following article was shared about a workshop that was supported by Global Ministries and written by Global Ministries long-term volunteer, Magyolene Rodríguez. This article has been translated into English from the original newsletter. To access the full newsletter (Spanish), click here.Read more
Henri Nouwen has a very interesting quote that reminds us of the way our Puerto Rican partners are responding to the crisis after the devastation caused by Hurricane María through the island. He said that “nobody escapes being wounded. We all are wounded people, whether physically, emotionally, mentally, or spiritually. The main question is not “How can we hide our wounds?” so we don’t have to be embarrassed, but “How can we put our woundedness to the service of others?” When our wounds cease to be a source of shame, and become a source of healing, we have become wounded healers.” When our wounds cease to be a source of lament or sense of defeat, and become a source of witness, commitment, service and hope, then we become wounded healers. Nouwen says that Jesus is God’s wounded healer: through his wounds we are healed. Jesus’ suffering and death brought joy and life. His humiliation brought glory; his rejection created a community of love. As followers of Jesus we can also allow our wounds to bring healing to others.
The following “testimonios” from pastors serving the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Puerto Rico and the United Evangelical Church of Puerto Rico, are the best examples of what it means to be wounded healers in accompanying the most affected rural and urban communities in Puerto Rico, that suffered the loss of their homes, work, and well-being, but also who suffered from a strong blow against their emotional and spiritual safety. It is from this departure of every security that these voices are lifted up.
It helps, now and then, to step back and take a long view.
The kingdom is not only beyond our efforts, it is even beyond our vision.
We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent
enterprise that is God's work. Nothing we do is complete, which is a way of
saying that the Kingdom always lies beyond us.
No statement says all that could be said.
No prayer fully expresses our faith.
No confession brings perfection.
No pastoral visit brings wholeness.
No program accomplishes the Church's mission.
No set of goals and objectives includes everything.
This is what we are about.
We plant the seeds that one day will grow.
We water seeds already planted, knowing that they hold future promise.
We lay foundations that will need further development.
We provide yeast that produces far beyond our capabilities.
We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that.
This enables us to do something, and to do it very well.
It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way,
an opportunity for the Lord's grace to enter and do the rest.
We may never see the end results, but that is the difference
between the master builder and the worker.
We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future not our own.
Bishop Ken Untener
(This prayer was composed by Bishop Ken Untener. The words of the prayer are attributed to Archbishop Oscar Romero, but they were never spoken by him.)
Angel Luis Rivera Agosto, Executive for Latin America and the Caribbean, traveled to Venezuela to visit Global Ministries partner, the Evangelical Pentecostal Church of Venezuela (UEPV). The purpose of the trip was to affirm Global Ministries’ long-standing relationships with our partners and to witness first-hand the projects they are doing and plan to do in the future. Our partners expressed appreciation for the trip, seeing it as a gesture of solidarity with the people and church in Venezuela in the midst of present crises.
From Zionsville Christian Church
Our visit with our friends from the Concejo, Nora and Mayra has come to an end. We had these two ladies constantly on the move all week to take advantage of their limited time. There were tremendous amounts of help from the members of our Guatemalan Ministry but also from Zionsville Christian Church members who had never been to Guatemala!
Two earthquakes and two hurricanes marked the history of the Caribbean with destruction and despair in the past few weeks. Many of our partners have suffered the devastating effects of these natural phenomena, piling up on top of the permanent social, economic, political, and emotional challenges of everyday life on these lands of sun and blue skies.Read more
From the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) General Minister and President Terri Hord Owens; Julia Brown Karimu, president of Division of Overseas Ministries and co-executive of Global Ministries; Lori Tapia, interim national pastor for the Central Pastoral Office for Hispanic Ministries; Vy Nguyen, executive director of Week of Compassion; and Angel Rivera-Agosto, area executive for Latin America/Caribbean, Global MinistriesRead more
Hurricanes Irma and Harvey have battered the southern coast of the United States as well as wreaking untold damage across the Caribbean. Many of the most heavily hit areas have not been heard from yet, and this page will be updated as new information from partners is received.
Please continue to hold all of those impacted in your prayers.
You can make a gift towards the recovery work by following the links
- One Great Hour of Sharing Response (UCC)
- Week of Compassion Response (Disciples of Christ)
- Global Ministries Partners Response
Lectionary Selection: Matthew 16: (21-28)
Prayers for Mexico:
Dear Lord: Help us to walk alongside those who are being crucified daily in the midst of a suffering people. Accompany us as we live today being aware of your presence, Jesus, in every human being, in every circumstance. Let us find you in the walks and ways of the borders, where constant threats, thirst, and hunger are part of the challenge of every day's frontier crossing. As we walk under the shadow of Your cross, which continues to represent madness and a stumbling block to the unbelieving and spiritually stingy, allow us to discern prophetic signals announcing the coming of Your kingdom of justice and peace. We praise you, oh Lord, in our hope of the glorious day when you will reconcile, unite, renew, and reinstate those of your children who wait your coming while working and bearing witness of Your love and compassion.Read more