December 2014 Prayer Letter

I had planned to go down to Mexico last August, taking a team from my local church to prayer walk the area of Huejotzingo where our TUtP team works. Huejo is a very spiritually dark area and so we wanted to bring more of the light of Jesus into the neighborhood. My illness which resulted in my getting a pacemaker implanted made it necessary to postpone that trip. I was finally cleared by my doctor to go the end of November.

Due to the change in dates, I was unable to take a team with me, so instead of prayer walking, I helped with some of the children’s work and with building a convertible table that can be used effectively
in the small space available for our center activities. Abraham and Rachel Lechuga, our team, do a variety of things in Huejo. They conduct Bible studies for adults and children. Many of the children who participate in these studies are also part of the craft and English language classes we offer throughout the week. Rachel and her mother-inlaw, Six, teach the kids and some of the adults to cook and to sew. At least once a year they conduct a very popular vacation Bible school in the neighborhood.

It has been a slow growing work over the years they have been living in this village. It has taken time to make friends and to build trust within the community. Now they have made a number of friends with those living near our center. More adults are participating in their Bible studies, even inviting them to teach in some their homes nearby. The goal is to start a number of small home churches throughout the area.

We are in the process of purchasing land where we can build a more adequate center to carry out our work. This would help save the money currently used to rent our present building. With enough land, we can grow a good garden, keep bees and raise small animals as well.

One great benefit in having to postpone this trip was that Rachel, our youngest daughter, gave birth to our second grandchild, a daughter named Leilani Joy, just a few days prior to my arrival. Leilani is, of course, a most perfect and beautiful little girl. Her two-year-old big brother, Abishael, doesn’t know quite what to make of her yet. He is all about playing non-stop. Leilani doesn’t know what to do with all the toys he offers her. He adores her, but she also demands lots of Mom’s time, which is taking him a while to get used to. He hasn’t had to share his Mom and Dad before. He’s adjusting, though, and he was a lot of fun as well. He is pretty much in non-stop motion from morning until bedtime. A true delight!

Ministry in Mexico November 18

This afternoon, I watched my daughter, Rachel, who is a TUtP missionary in Huejotzingo Mexico where I am this week, teaching reading to one of the young girls we work with here. The girl read a passage from the Bible and answered questions Rachel asked her from the passage to make sure she understood what she just read. The Catholic Church in this area discourages people from reading the Bible. We believe everyone should read and study the Bible to gain an understanding of what Jesus has done for them and to let them know how much He loves them.

The Bible she was reading a simplified version of the Spanish Bible with a more limited vocabulary. I brought this version down for Rachel to use in her classes. She starts her students in Matthew 1 and they read straight through. The most advanced student has reached Luke. That girl this afternoon is twelve years old and no longer attends school. Rachel and Abraham tried to do home schooling with her and some others, but her parents don’t believe in education. Still she is the most advanced reader.

The teaching that Rachel and her husband Abraham do with these children is often the only exposure to Scripture these children receive. The kids also get to do multiple types of crafts, play games, and generally have fun in a safe, loving and accepting environment. Many of these kids also participate in our Vacation Bible School and other activities and occasional trips to places of interest in surrounding communities.

Sometimes our interest in their children sparks an interest in their parents to learn about the Bible since we encourage the kids to tell their parents what they are studying. As I am writing this evening, Rachel and Abraham took my 6-day old granddaughter with them to a neighbor’s house to continue a Bible study with a woman who has said she wants to know more about the Scriptures–friendship evangelism in action. Rachel just returned to say that the daughter of the hostess is going into premature labor, so Abraham is arranging to get her to the doctor that delivered their daughter–love in action.

Wherever TUtP works, we try to meet whatever needs we encounter as best we are able.