Category "Updates"

Thank God for Healing Hands!

June 8, 2018

On May 5 the medical team from Christ Presbyterian Church in Tulsa arrived for a wild and busy week.  We watched as these Doctor’s, nurses and support staff saw hundreds of patients, working tirelessly to provide healing, kind words, medical expertise and the love of Christ.  Each day one group would travel to a nearby village while the other group saw patients at the mission center, both groups working through lines of people one after the other.  In addition to medical care the gospel was hared with each person and additional ministry work was done with children and women.

Everyone on this team was such a blessing and I wish we could tell all the different ministries and acts of service.  Particular highlights were Lacinda’s (Keilbarth) wonderful organizational abilities handling the large amounts of medications; and Mary Jane Friend’s dispensing eye glasses to si many with such great needs.  The whole team are real pros and we are more grateful than we can express.

On a personal note, thank you for your prayers for me.  Since coming back I have been doing home visitation with Nelson Osorto.  I wasn’t quite sure how it would go with the heat and climbing and all, but I was able to go up a couple of long stretches up the mountain and felt pretty good.  We’ve had a couple meetings with Mauricio; one included his superior from Memphis, and they are still interested in subcontracting from Landau to us which would be great news!  Another reason to pray.

Gary

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May Update – Back to the Future!

June 8, 2018
May Update – Back to the Future!

As planned, we got back to Honduras Wednesday (4/25) at noon.  For me, it had been a year since I’ve been here.  At the mission center streams of little kids came from every direction wanting a hug .  That afternoon we visited all four of the young adult classes and rejoiced to see old friends and new students as well.  The next day the Gathering Hearts employees surprised us with lunch and Nicolas shared that each employee had contributed $15 to buy food and gifts.   We felt truly welcomed back home.  What a rich blessing!

Later that day Nicolas was able to tell us more about the terrible situation here in December during the election.  There were 15 straight days no one could use the roads.  Many businesses were burned and the threat of armed violence was constant.  We all truly appreciate those that prayed for the ministry and the people here in Honduras during that time and we ask that you continue to pray.  The immediate threat of violence has subsided but Honduras remains a troubled country, more in need of Jesus than ever before.

On Thursday we also spent some time in the children’s classes where they sang songs and recited Scriptures.  Truly God loves the little children!  We had lots of medications, school materials, and other supplies to bring back with us this time and as is often the case, we crammed everything into four suitcases of almost exactly 50 pounds each and made it without any problems.  Please pray for us as the ministry is bigger and busier than ever.  We need God’s provision, guidance and wisdom as we serve the calling he has placed on our lives.

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April 2018 Making connections – Soccer Field News

April 28, 2018

Wednesday, April 9th, we had a really nice meeting with Bob Mulloy and Mark and Debbie Plaster. All three have been to Honduras and know some of the people there. We had a good time discussing future plans for Gathering Hearts. Then yesterday we had another with Bob Mulloy at the headquarters of Literacy and Evangelism here in Tulsa.  These were all opportunities to make great connection for the ministry.

 

We have an additional prayer request for those of you who follow our ministry and partner with us.  We received a note from Nicolas saying that Luis Paz had come out to the mission center and asked if we are still interested in buying the soccer field. He was planning on dividing it and selling it as building lots. However, he said he wants to be fair to us.

 

Of course we want to purchase the property and will be praying for the funds to buy it. What we call the soccer field is really only about a third the size of an actual field but it adjoins the Gathering Hearts Ministry Center and is where we hold the  soccer tournaments we use for outreach.

 

We are communicating almost hourly with our lawyer in Honduras regarding renewal of our residency. It has turned out to be quite an ordeal sending things back and forth. We are mourning the loss of a very dear friend over the weekend. Doug Foster passed away while on a trip with his family.

Scolarships and Tacos

April 15, 2018
Lesbe, (left) came to Christ with Juliza Batista (2nd to left)

Partnerships and village initiatives are going strong.

In San Roque we now have an outreach from the Templo Evangelical Emanuel, our home church.  This includes small meetings in homes as well as a joint meeting in the community center.  Pastor Nelson Batista and his wife Juliza have been working tirelessly in the discipleship programs in the villages around the Mission center.

One great blessing of the discipleship program, is a young girl named Lesbe who accepted Christ.  Like many young girls in Honduras Lesbe  had been unable to attend school for years in order to stay home and take care of her mother’s younger children. In addition education in Honduras is expensive, often times costing well more than the average family is able to afford. In Lesbe’s case she was given a scholarship to the private school and has begun to thrive.  Her academic scores are rising, she attends church, and through the discipleship program she found Christ.

All this from one scholarship!

This last month, the village women made tacos to help support the church.  What a great exercise in giving of these women who  are so in need themselves, giving of what they have!

Father’s day came early

April 15, 2018

Father’s Day Comes Early!

Unlike American holiday dates, March 18 was Father’s Day in Honduras. The people here love to celebrate Mother’s and Father’s Days and make it a big fiesta.

There is no exception in our church, Templo Evangelico Emanuel.  Pastor Nelson Batista centered his sermon on the Fathers and we had a big luncheon in the Production Center after the service.

What struck Gary and I was one particular story concerning Nelson Osorto’s father.  Nelson was baptized several years ago when he gave his heart and soul to the Lord.  Nelson is our computer/Bible/English teacher and interim pastor in Nelson Batista’s absence.  Like so many scenarios in Honduras, Nelson’s father abandoned him and his mother when Nelson was young. Nelson’s mother worked several jobs in order to make a living and pay for his education.

Nelson was able to get a job on a cruise ship and earned enough money to build his mother and family a house.  Nelson would hand carry the cement blocks up the steep mountain side to build the house.  Nelson’s father happened to live at the bottom of that mountain and watched Nelson work so hard, but never reach out to help.

When Nelson started preaching in the church, his father showed up one day.  What an incredible surprise and blessing.  Our prayer has been his father would come to Christ and restore the relationship.  What a thrill it was to get this picture of Nelson’s father at the Father’s Day service in church with Nelson’s arm around his father praying.  God always trumps wounds with his incredible love.