Crystal Pierce

serving in Mexico

My Visa Process

Posted by Crystal Pierce in Ministry, News Article on Apr 18th, 2014 | Discuss This Post

This year I want to show you how many people helped me out with my visa process.  It’s not just a process that I do by myself.

One of the people in this process is Linda.  She works at our Home Office in Florida, and she wrote a letter for me that I turned in to receive my visa.  She’s actually one of my favorite people because she is Amy’s mom and I’ve known her for forever.  Her job is actually a lot more than just writing letters, for me she’s sent me sympathy cards when my grandparents died, she’s helped me prepare my will, etc.  She also helps missionaries who need to renew their driver’s license but they are still out of country, she helps with letters for people that get summoned for jury duty but they are living in a remote tribe and don’t have plans to head back just for that one duty.  She also does paperwork for new missionaries, and so much more.  She’s kind of like our own personal secretary in the US and I totally appreciate her!

The second group of people that helped me out were Torre & Narah.  They run our guest house in Texas.  It’s a ministry specifically for our missionaries in Mexico and a place for us to go if we have to do visa or other paperwork, for missionaries that need to do supply buying, for meetings, for a place to rest before traveling either to Mexico or from Mexico, etc.  It’s a super important ministry.  I am so thankful for them and their ministry & also because they are close friends, I love having a reason to go to El Paso to visit them.  Specifically for the visa, I spent five days at the guest house.

 

The third person that helped me during this process is Melody.  Melody is the lady that is always in the know about anything that has to do with our visas.  She is always working so hard to keep our information up to date, and she has everything so well organized.  Because she has an awesome ability in Spanish she is able to write the letters that we take down to immigration.  She is always coordinating & scheduling for our missionaries when to start their paperwork.  Which is incredible because we are over 80 missionaries.

There is another person Ruben that is basically the face of our mission to immigration.  Once a week he heads down to immigration and takes our paperwork in to begin the process.  Depending upon the type of visa depends on how long the process takes.  The employees at immigration have great respect for Ruben and always know when we are a part of Mision Pro-Indigena because of his testimony.

My visa process this year went like this:

1. Cancel previous year’s visa at the immigration office at the Mexico/USA line.  Travel 3.5 hours to get there.

2.  Apply for new visa at the Mexican Consulate in Texas. This is a visa that is only good for 30 days.

3.  Return for the visa 3 times before it is finally available three days later due to a broken printer & “technical problems”. :S

4. Cross the Mexico/USA line and receive car papers from Customs.  Then drive back home (3.5 hrs.)

5. Turn in the next visa application for a year long visa. Melody helps me out, including a letter from Linda, and Ruben takes it down to immigration.

6.  Head down to immigration (30 minutes) myself the next day because they changed the form & I need this done quickly & hopefully will receive it before my sister & friend need to be picked up in El Paso.

7. Visa paperwork was not finished in time before picking them up in EP.  Head down to immigration and get a Visa Exit Permission.  Thankfully, I’m able to sign the paperwork & get fingerprinted, then it was sent off the next day to be printed in Mexico City.  Then it will be shipped back to Chihuahua.

8. After driving to Texas & picking up my sister & friend, I got my Visa Exit Permission, stamped leaving & entering Mexico.

9. Drive down to immigration and turn in the permission.  The visa isn’t there.  Plan to return to immigration another day.

10. The visa arrives, and two days later I head back down to pick it up! Now I can stay in Mexico for another year.

11. Visit the Transportation Department twice so I can receive papers to drive my car in Mexico too.

I seriously have no idea how many miles, hours, or visits I made to Immigration or the Transportation department but it was a lot.  The people that work in Immigration knew me by my first name because of all my visits to see them. :)  I am super thankful to have the visa & car paperwork so I can live and traveling around Mexico for another year.  And I am also so thankful for the people that helped me out in this process: Linda, Torre, Narah, Melody, & Ruben.  It takes a huge network of missionaries to keep other missionaries in their full time ministries.  We are all on the same team.

1 Corinthians 12.14-16 :: For the body does not consist of one member but of many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body.  And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body.

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January 2014

Posted by Crystal Pierce in Uncategorized on Jan 30th, 2014 | Discuss This Post
I am back from Christmas in Oregon, and a recent trip to the tribe!  A few weeks ago I was able to visit my friends, Chris & Rachel, that live and work among the Tepehuan Indians.  I have been praying, planning, and waiting for the opportunity to visit them.  After two years God answered my prayers and I was able to see them!
I spent three weeks in Oregon in December.  I was able to attend the memorial service for my grandma.  It was nice to be together as a family for that time with my mom.  I also spent the time by visiting friends and updating people on what my next steps are.  It was what I needed most in December, just to be home and with family.
Isaiah 41.13
For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.”
Work at the Ranch
This semester there are no students here, so it’s pretty quiet here.  We aren’t offering any classes this year.
We are an international team.  There are the Grangers, Lloyds, and myself – we are Americans.  One couple, the Sanchez’ are from Columbia.  Currently the Lloyds and myself are the only staff living at the Ranch.  The Grangers are on furlough in the States for a year, and the Sanchez’ are living in the city so Edwin can get to therapy for his back.
Since we aren’t doing classes this semester, we are are using the time to evaluate our training to gauge how we are doing, what ways we need to improve the training & classes so that the missionaries are receiving the best training possible to be tribal church planters, and get us, as a team, all on the same page with our purpose and curriculum guidelines.  We are hoping the seven of us can get together to have some meetings in February and work through these new opportunities!
Praises ::
:: for a wonderful time in Oregon with family
:: another exciting year in Mexico.  I’m so thankful to be here.  I’ll be starting year #4!
:: that my Escape is still running wellPrayer Requests ::
:: for the Ranch staff – as we reevaluate the classes and purpose for the next generation of missionaries that we will train.
:: for me as I’m learning a new program pertaining to my job here.  It’s a program that is all in Spanish, but very necessary for the type of work I’m doing.  It’s improving my business Spanish vocabulary :)
:: for Chris & Rachel as they learn Tephehuan, live and work among them.
:: end of February I’ll be working on renewing my visa & I will have to do it in Texas. Please pray for a smooth process & that I’ll receive it quickly.
:: for our fundraisers to raise monies for the tribal missionaries to be able to come to the retreat in March.

Servant of the Most High God,
Crystal

Oregon was beautiful, cold, and wonderful all at the same time!  I enjoyed every day.
A picture with Chris & Rachel before catching the flight out!
Tribal Visit
Chris and Rachel have been my friends for 8 years. We went through the training in Missouri together and now we are here in Mexico.  Since they moved to the mountains to work and live with the Tepehuan Indians two years ago, they continually ask if I can come visit.  I finally had the opportunity to fly out and visit them.  The main purpose of the trip was for the consultants to be able to test their progress in learning the Tepehuan language.  Chris and Rachel did very well and are advancing in Tepehuan.  Currently, they are the only missionaries living there and the Tepehuan people come to visit them all day every day.  Some come by just for a visit, others help Chris & Rachel learn the language, and some come by to receive some help in the way food, etc.    The trip helped me see how I can be praying more for Chris & Rachel, and their Tepehuan friends. 
Ladies Encouragement & Planning Team
Before I left Chihuahua last year, I was involved with the LEPT (Ladies Encouragement & Planning Team).  It’s a team of six ladies and we organize the monthly meetings for our fellow lady missionaries in Mexico and other events with our missionaries.  This year we have the awesome opportunity to plan a retreat just for our missionary ladies in March!  There is a group of 8 ladies from Oregon coming to Chihuahua with the purpose of serving us!  We are praying that is an encouraging time for each of our ladies, especially the missionaries that live in the tribes.
As a team of ladies in the city, we are working on raising funds for the tribal missionaries to be able to fly to Chihuahua for this awesome opportunity.  Currently we have two fundraisers planned – a spaghetti fee and a yard sale. Our hope is to be able to help with a portion of the flight costs for 14 missionaries in the tribes.
If anyone is interested in helping our tribal ladies get to the retreat, please contact me: crystal_pierce@ntm.org for more information. 
In March I will have the privilege of having my second set of visitors!!!  My sister visited Chihuahua three years ago, and she wants to come back along with two friends from home!!  I’m so looking forward to showing them my life, friends, & why I love Mexico. :)
Anyone else want to come visit? It’s much warmer here!
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Happy Thanksgiving

Posted by Crystal Pierce in Uncategorized on Nov 26th, 2013 | Discuss This Post

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

Thanksgiving is almost upon us!  Crazy to think of how fast this year has gone by.  I want to wish you & your family a Happy Thanksgiving. :)


I’m sure you’re wondering what has happened to me since I haven’t communicated with you in the last two months. Unfortunately, I have some not-so-terrific news.  I made it safely to Baja and joined the team that is already working among the Mixteco people.  However, on my fourth day there, my coworker, Arehmi, had bad news.  She told me that she was pregnant.  And as a result of that she was off the Mixteco team and also out of New Tribes Mission Mexico.  It was very hard for me to hear that.  Because she is out of the mission and off of the team, that means that I didn’t have a coworker.  It sent all of my plans of working there for the next 20 years into limbo.  And that was has been hard for me.

We had numerous visits to our tribal team in less than six weeks.  Our field chairman and his wife came out for a few days along with the pastor from Arehmi’s sending church.  We had another missionary couple come out to visit us too.  The last week I was there the two couples from our consulting team came out.  One of those couples is the Grangers (Dorr & Nancy), I worked with them for the last two years at the Ranch.

NTM Mexico leadership, my Mixteco team, as well as the consultants all agreed that it wasn’t good for me to stay without a coworker.  Their recommendation was that I head back to work at the Ranch (Mexican Missionary Training Center), and start looking again for a coworker.  And in agreement with my home church, I left Baja and the Mixteco team two weeks ago.  I returned to the Ranch a week ago.

Start over again? That’s so difficult. But during the entire six weeks I was there, I constantly prayed for God’s will to be done.  Sometimes I still can’t figure out why He would have had me go to Baja for just 6 weeks.  Not even two months!  But then I remember that none of this was a shock to Him.  He knew this would happen before He even created the world!  And He still has a plan for me.  So I continually chose to rest in knowing that He is in control, even when I don’t understand the why’s.

Psalm 27:14
Wait for the LORD;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the LORD!


Prayer Requests
:: for Arehmi – she has a lot of decisions to make.  Pray for her relationship with God first and foremost.
:: for me – I’m realizing that I’m going through a grieving process:: the postponement of my desires to work in a tribe.  And also for me emotionally.
:: for my mama – her mom (my grandma) died the day before I left Baja.
:: for me – as I re-enter life in Chihuahua, with my friends, the missionaries here, and my church.
:: for a coworker for me so I can head to an Indian tribe in Mexico.

Praises
:: safety in traveling by myself from Northern Baja to Los Angeles to El Paso.
:: my Ford Escape was perfect for Baja, including all the dirt roads, and it will be wonderful for the Ranch too.
:: for my time in Baja.  While I was only there for 6 weeks, I’m thankful for that time including the hardships, difficult decisions I had to make, and I’m thankful for what God has taught me.
:: I was able to get free roundtrip tickets to go to Oregon for my Grandma’s memorial service (on Dec. 14) and I can stay for Christmas.


My future plans
I have begun the process of looking for a new co-worker to be able to return and serve in one of the tribal works.  And the same time, NTM Mexico Leadership has asked me to help with translation of different documents for the Mexican missionaries that are heading to work in tribal groups in other countries. I will be working in different capacities with all the graduates who have completed the missionary training program, helping and supporting them as they head into new works.

Presently, together with the training staff, we are revamping and reconstructing part of the training curriculum.  I look forward to being able to help out with that process, along with working more on the classes that I will teach.  My desire is to serve, even in these challenging days. I hold steadfast to this conviction to serve God and be a blessing to others.  My prayer is that I may be a blessing here at the Siloe Ranch serving with the Mexican missionaries.

Currently at the Ranch there is another staff couple (the Lloyds) and myself, plus three families including Hector, Amy, & Judah.  So I am not alone at the Ranch.


If you have any questions or encouragement, please email me. :)
Blessings to you and your family.

Crystal

This is the beautiful house God provided for me! It was recently finished and had everything on my wishlist.  While I was only there five weeks, I saw how God was able to provide for me in just that short amount of time. :)
Sunset in Baja. The view from my house was fantastic each day.  My house was at the top of a hill, and I had wonderful sunrises and breathtaking sunsets.
The Ford Escape.  My car was a wonderful blessing in Baja.  It handled the dirt roads wonderfully and was a blessing for the adults that had to sit the back seat.  I’m still amazed at how wonderful this rig has been for me.  It was a blessing in Baja, and I’m sure it will be a blessing here in Chihuahua at the Ranch. :)
Meeting Judah:While I saw Hector and Amy this summer, I didn’t expect to meet their son, Judah, for about two years.  But God brought me back to Chihuahua, and I have been able to spend a lot of time with him. I even get to be his auntie! :)
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Traveling to Baja California

Posted by Crystal Pierce in Ministry, News Article on Sep 23rd, 2013 | Discuss This Post

Traveling to Baja California

Dear << Test First Name >>,I’m ending my furlough time here in Oregon.  I just came back from Women’s camp encouraged and ready to go!  Tomorrow I will begin my two days of travel to Southern California.  I have a friend that is going to ride with me down to Southern California and spend a few days down there with me and then she will fly back home.  And Arehmi will join me Friday, spend the night, and then the two of us will cross the line on Saturday.

Please be praying for us as we travel, for the car, and safety on the road.  
Please also pray for me as I keep fighting sickness (vomiting, colds, back pains)!
Also, praise God, because it looks like my team found a home for me!

Thanks everyone for the encouragement and prayers.  I plan on writing to you from Baja California after Saturday!
Blessings,
Crystal

P.S. To all in Baker & surrounding areas – thanks for all the love and wonderful times this summer.  I will miss you all!  I’m sorry if I didn’t have a chance to say good-bye to you before I left. :)

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Summer 2013

Posted by Crystal Pierce in Uncategorized on Aug 20th, 2013 | Discuss This Post
New prayer cards are available! Contact me…
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I have been enjoying the last couple of weeks here in Eastern Oregon.  I’ve stayed busy with sharing in churches, visiting friends and family, helping out with a few projects at my sister’s house, and enjoying all things summer in Oregon.  Such as sweet corn on the cob, watermelon, raspberries, BBQ’s, summer rain storms, green grass, and so much more! :)
Thank you to all who have prayed for me to find a car – because I found one!  Two weeks ago I was able to buy a Ford Escape.  It’s really cute & I have been enjoying it so much.  I pray that it will be an awesome car for the future ministry in Baja California.
This is the group of missionaries and teachers that participated in a 8 day Advanced Language Workshop.  We had missionaries come from all over Latin America to Mexico to partake in this awesome opportunity.  We learned how to analyze a language on a discourse level (meaning you have a high level of language and can see patterns in the language) in order to help us as we begin translating Bible lessons, develop literacy materials & as we teach them God’s word.  It was very helpful and useful information.
This was the week I was also cooking breakfast & dinner for 20-25 people & finishing packing my house!  By the grace of God and help from others I got it all done!
Praises ::
:: for a wonderful time in Oregon
:: the Ford Escape – may it be a blessing for quite a few years

Prayer Requests ::
:: that my co-workers would find a home for me in Baja just in time for my arrival at the end of September
:: for travel plans as head to So. California at the end of September

I have new updated prayer cards – if you are interested in receiving one, please contact me. :)
Blessings,
Crystal

The last week of May were the meetings for all our missionaries in Mexico.  We enjoyed four fun filled days hearing about what God is doing in the different tribes and different ministries that He has in Mexico!  It was encouraging to hear all the reports and connect with friends that we only see a couple times a year or less.
Check out the Mixteco team!  I will be joining Gaby & Adriana, Ramon & Vanessa, and Arehmi.  Arehmi needs me to help be her support as a single missionary and to round out the team.  I am looking forward so much to joining this team at the end of September.  Cool things are happening on our team.  Like Adriana is very close to finishing her language study and will soon be starting on literacy materials.  Arehmi should be finishing her language study early next year and she’ll be able to start working on translation.  And then the other four us will need to work hard to learn the Mixteco language and culture so we can help the other two out.
I am planning on heading down to Southern California at the end of September, packing my car up with my stuff that is stored there, and then crossing California and moving to Baja California. :)
“He gives power to the weak
and strength to the powerless.
Even youths will become weak and tired,
and young men will fall in exhaustion.
But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.”

Isaiah 40:29-31

Copyright © 2013 New Tribes Mission, All rights reserved.
Thanks for staying interested in what God is doing through me in Mexico.
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