Loreto Weekend Report – Santa Rosalía Prison May 30 – June 3, 2017

Report for Weekender Prison Team May 30 – June 3, 2017

This month we were in a prison again – this time in Santa Rosalía, where we have been going every year for the past eight years – sometimes twice in a year. It was so wonderful to be back again sharing the love of Jesus and the message of salvation with some of the staff, guards and inmates; and to see some of the fruit of our previous labors.

On the day we arrived, we were welcomed very warmly by many of the staff and guards – quite a difference from how everything began eight years ago. All of the suspicion, apprehension, and criticism we experienced back then had been replaced with embrace after embrace; and on the last day, one of the lead guards asked if we could take our health fairs to the communities around his home – and he assured us that he wanted to help us put these health fairs on…

In the meetings we had with some of the staff and guards at the beginning of each day, I explained exactly why we keep coming back – beginning by telling them why every time we come we give everyone the little booklet, “Agua Viva”- the Gospel of John.

What makes this book special is that the writer had seen and heard something so very unique, from a person he had got to know so well, that he felt compelled to share what he had come to know with as many people as possible. In the same way we too have come to know and experience some-thing we want to share – especially with the inmates (who have been discarded from society) – because everyone who comes to know and experience what this writer explains, will have their lives will be changed forever, for the good…

The writer used these words trying to describe who Jesus was: The Word, Creator, Life, Light, Grace, Truth, Son of God, Lamb of God, Forgiver… During these three morning meetings we read together John 1:1-23 and I explained in detail what each of these words meant; and then I went on to explain that John the Baptist declared himself to be preparing the way for the Messiah – the One who was coming into their world as promised, to change everything…!  In the same way I said, “We’re like John the Baptist – coming into your world to share this same wonderful news…”

After the meeting on the third day one of the office staff came to me explaining how much she really appreciated what we were doing, and had done over the years; and then went on to explain that her life had been changed as a result, and that she had been attending one of the churches in Santa Rosalia that we had held our health fairs at a few years ago…

At the meetings we had with all of the inmates at the end of our three days I again explained to them, using a modern parable, the personal value there can be of reading the Bible, believing what it tells us, and doing what it says…, over one hundred men picked up Bibles.

Click here to see pictures and read our Full Report…

Johnson Journal – April 2017

Partners in Ministry

A few days ago I was in a meeting with Alba, the leader of the Angels, and Pastor as we were planning several outreach events in partnership with our groups. Now they have taken ownership and are planning and leading all the ministry activities and we are privileged to be able to come along side and support their ministry. They are now asking us to join them. It was really exciting to see them making plans for what they wanted to happen. Mostly I was just asking how we could assist them.

What a change from a few years ago when they seemed to want us to do all the planning and they would come along only because we asked.

As one of our Partners In Ministry you are a vital part of this ministry. Without you we could not be serving in San Vicente and without any doubt without your prayers we would not have seen God work nearly so much. We want to thank you for your faithful prayers, encouragement and support. Each of you is important and we consider you to be very special.

Click here to read the Johnson Journal April 2017

 

Loreto Weekend Report – March 30 – April 3, 2017

REPORT FOR WEEKENDER TEAM — March 30-April 3, 2017

Cereso-la-paz(2)

Last Friday, Saturday and Sunday we had more than 250 inmates in the La Paz State Prison ask for Bibles and New Testaments: we gave out over 100 Bibles, 150 New Testaments, and over 100 Gospels of John. We prayed with almost everyone who came to see one of our 4 doctors, our 3 dentists, or to get some glasses. We had over 25 workers with us – and there were over 50 inmates who gave their lives to the Lord – after which we sang together, ‘Hallelujah…, Hallelujah…’

On Sunday after 132 inmates had been through our 3-day Health Fair, we had a meeting with a large number of the prisoners, (with a few guards and staff also present). There had been an invitation given to the inmates to come and listen to Don explain why we had come, and to receive a gift bag from us, as well as the opportunity to receive a Bible.  (The gift bag included: a toothbrush, toothpaste, soap and a wash cloth.)

We had probably 200 men and 20 women come to this meeting, as I explained that we had come because we and many our friends love them… I went on saying, “Someone has lied to you… You need to ‘trust the evidence’ – there is more evidence for ‘Creation’ than there is for ‘evolution’…” I carried on, “…God was at the beginning…; He created everything for His purposes – including each of us; therefore at the end of our lives we can expect Him to be our Judge… Are you prepared to meet your Judge?  God offers you and us a pardon for all the wrongs we have all done; and He wants to give each of us better lives…  It is all written down for us in the Bible – if you would like to have one to read for yourselves, just ask for one as you come to receive a gift bag from us…” I went on explaining, “…the gift bag is small, but our friends have put them together for us to give to you, just to prove that we do love you…” 

Click read to read the full article and see more photos…

Ávila Family Report – March 2017

Hello brothers and sisters in Christ. We hope you are well, greetings from your missionaries, the Avila family serving in Cabo San Lucas area.  We want to share with you the activities of the ministry that we have carried out this year so far and the upcoming activities.  In January we traveled together with Stephen and Jan to visit the churches in Maine, Connecticut and New Hampshire. We had a great time connecting with so many of our friends, team members and supporters. We are so grateful to so many churches and individuals that have supported us for almost 20 years. You are such an important part of our ministry. We also really enjoyed the snow!  While we were gone, our children carried out an evangelical medical campaign with our friend Dr. Mercado, in a community outside of Cabo. We supported the ministry of the “Church of God” with 18 medical consultations, pressure and glucose intake and Christian counseling, also distributed bibles and brochures. We are partnering with them in all 11 of the communities with once a month events to share God’s love, medical care and grow their mission church plants.

In the month of February we had an outreach in the “Gastelum” colony, where we had a small medical outreach seeing about 15 patients, checking vital signs, offering Christian counseling and shared dramas and games with the children.The church members shard the word of God, and gave out bibles and books of John.

In March we had an excellent time with our team of short-term missionaries from the United States and a local pastor committed to loving and caring for those so very isolated, about 8 hours from Cabo. We were grateful to visit four villages, La Purisima, Las Barrancas, Chicharon, and San Juanico, that have very little services. Together with them we provided dentistry service to 81 people, medical consultations to 160 people, delivery of reading glasses to 160, foot care to 20 people and children’s activities.  In addition we had 7 home visits and checked the blood pressure and glucose of many. We saw God’s light in this place and were able to share God’s love.  On March 15 we had a medical outreach at the “Alpha and Omega” mission where we gave 18 consultations, blood pressure and glucose checks, medicine was given out and the children were taken care of in an outside covered area.

We are waiting for the visit of a team from Southwest Hills Church, Oregon next week with whom we will have a week full of ministry. We have work projects at both the clinic and the rehabilitation center planned, we will attend church services with the churches we will be serving with, we will participate in the children’s feeding program-cooking food and children’s ministries, and have 4 health fairs and medical outreaches planned with pastors in San Jose, Los Congreos park and the community of Tierra Libertad. We know God has a great plan for that week.  In addition, we continue to see many patients at the clinic, about 37 in January, 25 in February and 29 in March and as many home visits and medication deliveries as needed.

Other upcoming events are serving 200 inmates at a medical/dental clinic at Santa Rosalia Prison for 4 days, May 30-June 3 with missionaries Don and Lorraine, serving with a dental and outreach team in Cabo,June 4-10 and heading to Palenque, Chiapas in July29-Aug 5 for more medical/dental outreaches.

It is a great blessing to be able to share with others of the love and mercy of God. We thank you very much for the support and prayers you give us.

God bless you.

Alvaro, Soledad and family

“The Mountains Will Move”

July 2 2016

December 2016 Newsletter

Hello friends!

 We wanted to share with you about fall ministry at La Esperanza.  It seems that the ministry should slow down after summer, but there is always more work to be done!  God is good, as He continues to draw people in our area to His heart.  It is a blessing to be a part of God’s work here.  We look forward to a slower-paced time with family this holiday season.  Our prayer is that you will be able to slow down and enjoy the holiday as well.   Please pray for healing for Angel (there is more information in the attached newsletter).  Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

 God bless you!

Buky, Theresa, and Elena Ventura Lewis

 

“The Mountains Will Move”

July 2 2016

November 2016 Newsletter

Hello Friends and Family,

It can certainly be a challenge to sum up nine weeks of summer ministry in a few pages, but here is the result – attached to this e-mail.  One of our favorite times with the groups is sharing time at the end of the week.  Sometimes it takes place in the Fellowship Hall, out in the courtyard, or at the beach around a campfire.  It’s a time when team members share meaningful moments from the week of ministry and how God has made an impact on their lives in this place.  If we wrote down all of the testimonies of God’s goodness this summer, we’d have a pretty long book!  Isn’t God awesome!  It’s these sharing times that motivate us to continue on.  We are so thankful for your prayers, love, and support!  We pray you have a happy Thanksgiving with your families this month!

God bless you!

Buky, Theresa, and Elena Ventura-Lewis

 

Loreto Weekender October 21-24, 2016

Report For

Loreto Weekender  October 21-24, 2016

loreto

 

Full Report With Photos

It was good to start another season of ‘free’ evangelistic Community Health Fairs – even though it was very hot and the humidity made it almost unbearable. We didn’t have air conditioning in the church, but I think we had six or seven fans blowing on everyone all the time in the church, and another four fans working in the dental trailer all day long.  But we were all glad to be serving the people…

We were really pleased to have Lynda Tran come from Santa Cruz to join us this time, as well as Mike and Karen who came with Steve and Jan Crews. Odi and Chava came with their three children from Insurgentes to help, as did Eliana. Yxchel and Gloria came from La Paz, and brought Ricardo and Chris with them. And we also had Travis and Sherry from Loreto helping us, along with several members from the church we were at. It was a wonderful Team! We all worked very well together, and many people were truly blessed as a result. Saturday was a little slow, not so much because of the heat, but because Loreto was celebrating its 319th birthday, but we were all busy all day long on Sunday. (That’s right, Loreto was established in 1697.)

I have been asked: What is it that always stands out in your Health Fairs? The answer: It is always wonderful to just watch people as the love of Jesus is poured out upon them, and as they heard the message of salvation being shared with them. They are always amazed at how well Christians can work together. They are impressed with the personal care we give to each of them – they are not pushed through the line or treated coldly. And when we ask them if they would like us to pray for them, they are so grateful that we care about whatever the issues are that they are facing. And to see the joy on their faces after they have understood God’s love for them, and then as a result they have accepted Jesus Christ as their own personal Lord and Savior – that expression of happiness is remarkable! It is like they have become ‘debt free’ – their burdens have been lifted and they have been given a new start in life. It’s wonderful!

Missionaries Don & Lorraine Karsgaard