Monday, March 31, 2014

March / April update

Dear Friends,

It is hard to believe another month has passed (I wonder how many times I have started a letter that way over the past 20 years?). This has been a month full of travel, preaching, and new challenges. Our years always seem to start slow because of summer vacations in January and February in Latin America. The jolt of activity in March always comes as a surprise!
This month I made my very first visit to our ministry in Trinidad and Tobago. Very often my visits are determined by need: leadership change, administrative/financial crises, etc. Trinidad has always been the small, but effective ministry that doesn’t cry out for help. Nonetheless, we had made a calendar for regular audits, and Trinidad was on the list. Just as I suspected, their systems and accounting look just great. But much more important, their ministry in the lives of students is flourishing.

Many years ago we began the youth ministry called Crossroads in Trinidad and Tobago. The government of Tobago was so impressed with the biblical values presented in the curriculum, that they have partnered with us for the past several years to reach all of the high school students. When I say partner, I mean they actually fund a great deal of the curriculum. It is wonderful to see secular officials value the outcome of our work in the lives of students.
I got to speak at the University of the West Indies one afternoon. I spoke on God’s faithfulness to a thousand generations, and our personal responsibility before God to leave a Godly heritage, starting with our own life. It was great to see the response of the students and hear them think of applications in their lives. Please pray for our ministry in Trinidad and Tobago as they reach each incoming generation of high school and university students with the Good News of the Gospel!
I have written about our new church plant, the Guadalupe Gathering Place. This month we said goodbye to our founding pastor, John Lovell, and are moving forward in faith with the leadership God has raised up. We are teaching through Colossians, and a couple of weeks ago I preached from Chapter 3 on the role of husbands. With our very youthful congregation, the concept of becoming a Godly and responsible husband is vital, but often not really on the radar screen of the average university student. Please pray for me as part of our elder team and for the church as God brings growth.
Last week I was in Guatemala with part of our Latin America leadership team to coach our national leadership team. Some teams need more direct help than others, and this is a season for Campus Crusade in Guatemala when they are facing many direct challenges both from within and without. Please pray for our leaders there that they would seek God and love people as they take the ministry in new directions.
This week we have 30 leaders from all over Latin America and the Caribbean converging on San Jose for a week to step back together and review our progress over the last three years and refine and sharpen our vision toward 2020. They will all be arriving later today and our meetings begin tomorrow morning. Please pray for clear thinking and openness to the leading of God’s Holy Spirit. The decisions we make will impact our 500 staff around the continent, and through them thousands of others.
Thank you for praying for the situation in Venezuela. We decided to remove all of our North American staff from that troubled country. Please continue to pray for our national staff who remain in Venezuela: God’s provision for them, safety, peace.
Well, that’s the update! We appreciate your faithful prayer and steady support as we trust God to reach people.
Your missionaries in Latin America,

Ron and Jeanie