I just returned from a trip Fernando and I took to Minnesota. He is currently in Iowa at the annual BILD International conference, the program being implemented in the Garifuna seminary. We'll share more about that when he returns to Washington later this month.
The picture below shows a very special couple, who invited us to Minnesota to share about our ministry with groups and individuals they know. They have been closely connected to the Wycliffe missionaries in Honduras who coordinated the Garifuna Bible translation project, so Fernando has known him since 1992. Since then, this brother in Christ has played a highly influential role in a variety of projects, including starting a scholarship fund for pastors, leading teams to Honduras who have built homes for pastors and widows, and linking several missionaries to those who have supported them. He also is on the pastoral staff of a very missions-centered church, where the BILD program is also used.
He planned a very productive time for us, scheduling about ten meetings and speaking engagements. We also learned a lot from him about fundraising, as he is gifted and experienced in this area. We hope to follow his example in advocating for others and wisely administering resources for the advancement of God's kingdom. It was a gift from the Lord to get to know him better and learn alongside him.
The next picture shows Fernando sharing at a church missions night. There were tables representing countries around the world where the church supports missionaries, and the enthusiasm and commitment to the Great Commission on a global level was palpable and motivating. Fernando did a great job sharing (according to others, not just me!).
A special part of this trip was visiting my mom's cousin and her family. We spent two nights with them and shared at their church. It was fun to get to know them better and talk about what our families have in common. I also enjoyed the beautiful farmland and cornfields where they live, getting a taste of a part of the U.S. I hadn't seen first-hand. We went to a high school cross country meet, and they brought us extra layers since we are not quite used to the cold!
We are thankful for:
- The hospitality and advocacy generously extended to us during our trip. Thank you to all those who drove us places, made meals, and took time to learn about our ministry.
- Your prayers for safe travels, good, health, and stamina. My pregnancy symptoms were much lighter than usual, and I was surprised by how much energy I had!!
Please pray for:
- The people we met with to follow God's prompting as to how to support pastor training and church planting among the Garifuna people.
- Fernando's time at the BILD conference: for good networking with other participants and leaders and for clear vision as to how to further pastor training in Honduras.