I am so thankful for all of your prayers continuously for Destino del Reino and me personally.
Everything is going so well. We had a week of prayer this week and I am anxious to see the growth that comes out of this for all of us spiritually in the church. The church is growing always and we are so thankful for the opportunity to train up so many in the Word of God. Carlos appears to have been under much attack lately and I would appreciate extra prayer for him. He has had a cough for over 2 months and he sleeps well but cannot preach without coughing a lot and he feels tired from it during the day. He also has had a lot of stomach problems lately. He is committed to study and prepare his sermons and then is sick almost every church night. He continues to persevere but I would appreciate your praying for him more intensely right now. Thanks.
We have decided to change from Sunday School to the AWANA program here. For those that are not familiar with that, it is like Sunday School with lessons and singing etc. but includes a whole lot of bible memory and competition for rewards in memorizing verses with different levels earned like Girl Scouts or something. We will start our training sessions on the 19th and pray that we will have enough leaders. We will have it on Saturday afternoons and then Sundays will be the only day of quiet at Destino. Carlos’s family especially need one day together and this will really help them out. We had such a hard time finding Sunday School teachers but with AWANA’s we need a lot more leaders but most of them will listen to the children recite their verses and lead the game time. We can find a lot of teenagers here that are willing to help with that and they will grow spiritually in the process as well. Please keep this in your prayers. I think we will reach a lot more children this way as well. Many of the children go to a church on Sundays and cannot come to our Sunday School class, but I am very doubtful about how much they are learning in their churches. With Sat. afternoon AWANAS they will not have a conflict with their own churches and they will grow spiritually through this program.
Well, school is getting bigger all the time. We had our monthly teachers’ meeting a week ago and I finally gave in to Carlos and the director to let 30 kids be in each class. I had originally felt that we should have about 15 in each class to assure them of getting lots of personal attention, etc. But the classes are so big and Honduran children are not behavior problems and very grateful to have this opportunity so the teachers say they have no problem putting more in their classes. We were already up to 25 in each and so we have added 5 more. They assured me they will not push me to go more than that. Their thinking is that this is such an incredible opportunity that we should try to give it to as many as we can without going too far and losing the strength in their classes. Anyway, that means we once again need more sponsors. We have also added a few more options on the school sponsorship sign-up on the web site. If you want to go there to see it, it is under “Ways to Help” under “School sponsors”. I am thinking that if some of you might want to put an announcement in your bulletins at church, we could get a few more people that way. I know God will provide but it is really necessary to have one sponsor for each child because of the $40 a month, about $25 of that goes just to feed them. The rest is for uniforms, materials, teachers’ salary, bus driver and cook’s salaries, etc. There is also an electric bill now that we never had before. God will provide but we sure would love to have some more back-up for each of these children. Zac Rosenbaum has been helping with the sponsorship and if someone signs up under the web site, it shoots an email to him and he assigns a student and sends a picture and also helps remind people monthly to remember to send in their support. It has been such a burden off of me to have Zac take this over for me. He did a great job on the web site as well. If you have not seen it yet, look under www.destinodelreino.org The photo tour is really great for helping people see what it looks like to go down the road and take a tour of the school and buildings at the children’s home.
The children are doing great. Little Ana is so filled out and healthy looking now. She is such a happy baby and we are thrilled to have her with us. Sammy is singing and entertaining us all the time. Little Emily just lays back and enjoys everyone. She is such a laid-back personality, and sooooo fat!! We still think that baby Sophie will move in this month, but will believe it when she actually gets here. Sammy and Emily’s mom got safely to the USA and called yesterday to check on the kids. I don’t think she will return and we pray she finds Christians in New Jersey to help her grow spiritually.
We are trying so hard to potty-train Jonathan. Cokie has been trying to help out with that too. ha. Yesterday the workers put Jonathan on the toilet and told him to sit there and try to go. I guess someone forgot him but we went in a little while later and he was fast asleep on the toilet and snoring. It was so funny and of course, I got some great pictures. Poor little guy is just completely uninterested in using the toilet. He will be 4 in a few months but I guess maybe peer pressure will make him want to learn one day, huh?
All the other kids are doing great. They loved school and don’t like this 3 month vacation much.
Please keep praying for the teachers that God wants to send to us. I really believe we are to get a few American teachers to help us each year. I am going to be writing a better description of what would be required and how much money they would need to raise, etc. and will include it in the next email and maybe some of you will know someone interested in coming for 10 months to volunteer. This would be a great opportunity for a retired teacher as well. We would love to have all their experience and patience for these children. They wouldn’t have to know much Spanish because we want them to speak English with the children anyway. Please pray for God to provide the right people for us.
Please pray for the next container that is getting prepared to come. A collection will be made fo rthe things we need in Augusta, Georgia and they will drive a truck to Houston and Mike Bennett is going to get the container and send the stuff to us by early August. Thanks for your prayers for us to get the things we need. There are so many generous people in the States and they just need a way to get stuff to us so I am praying for it to all go well. Patti Arnold in Augusta is going to coordinate the collection for us — pray for her especially, ha. This is a BIG job.
We had a group of mostly my family members and a few others last week and it was a good week. They helped with so much painting at the school and also we went to a few villages with medicine and a one-day VBS. The next group will be a medical brigade from Augusta coming the end of June. Please pray for all the preparations for that and that God will use this week in tremendous ways to see people come to Christ through the meeting of their physical needs and also that the team members will be blessed for their love for the poor.
The work is underway under the school to begin the cafeteria and classrooms for Sunday School, etc. Please pray for al lthe funds to flow in so we can get it done by the middle of August. It is a bigger project than I realized and we are cast once again on God’s providence for all we need to do this big project. Thanks for your faithful prayers.
We finished up two smaller projects and I am grateful for that. We finally finishued up the pavillion in the middle of the yard at the children’s home for shelter and shade for Sunday School classes, groups’ meetings and our children to play. This is rainy season so it is really helpful with the kids playing outside. We also are finishing up the new offices under my house. It used to be our church. All we had to do was add a little sheetrock and formed three offices and now are painting it. It was such an inexpensive thing to do but so necessary. I am so excited to have a place for all our “stuff” now. It is amazing to see how God just guides us to how to arrange everything here at Destino. It is so well-planned out by HIM!!
Keep praying for the evangelism teams that go out to the villages. The past 3 weeks they have had the films in churches already in existence because they cannot go into the fields of villages with the rain right now, but I know God is using the team to encourage believers in these little churches as well. And, the time Carlos is spending with the young men on the team is discipleship as well so it is all worth the time they are spending together.
Thanks for praying for Carlos’ permission. It looks like, most likely, he will get a report on his fingerprints from Washington DC in about 3 weeks and there should not be a problem after that. He will probably be able to come to the USA in late September or early October. I will let you all know as soon as possible so he can get scheduled to share at various churches and gatherings. Pray for God’s clear guidance as to where he would have Carlos share.
Thanks again for all your faithful prayers for all of us. We are very aware of the presence of God in this place and in every step of this ministry. Thank you for being so faithful to us in every way.
Love in His grace,