Thanks so much for your prayers for us this past month as we traveled back here to Paraguay and have gotten settled back into our various ministry responsibilities. We were warmly welcomed by our co-workers and neighbors as well as by a variety of creepy creatures who set up house while we were gone. We had birds, scorpions, centipedes, frogs, and hundreds of spiders taking up residence not to mention the snake that came up the shower drain. If you hear an ear-piercing scream, it is probably just Janet finding another welcoming creature.
Shortly after getting back, we were able to attend a workshop called Strengthening Your Interpersonal Skills. It was a great week of learning and growing in the areas of listening, problem solving, confronting, encouraging, dealing with conflicts, managing stress, and dealing with loss among a host of other concepts. We want to be effective tools in God’s hands for impacting others for all of eternity, and we are very thankful for this week of personal learning and growing.
Pray for our family as we balance a variety of ministry responsibilities. One couple recently needed to leave for a six month home assignment, so we are endeavoring to cover their responsibilities while they are gone. Pray for Josh as he finishes up his 9th grade schoolwork. He is enjoying being back home here in Paraguay. Pray for Ben as he finished his first year of college and has a variety of different activities and work planned for the summer.
Thanks for your prayers!
Thanks so much for your prayers as Mark recently traveled to Thailand for the NTM Global Partners Forum. There were over 100 people representing 40 different countries. It was an incredible time of fellowship with other believers from so many different backgrounds, languages, and cultures who all have the same vision for reaching the least reached with the Gospel.
Topics of discussion included taking a look back at the past 70 years of NTM’s history and seeing what God has taught us, refocusing on our core values, and looking ahead to the future to see how we can strategically partner and position ourselves for relevant ministry in a changing world.
Once we return to Paraguay, we will continue to discuss these concepts with the rest of our leadership team evaluating what we are currently doing and strategizing for the future. Pray for us as we seek to partner and mobilize Paraguayan churches in the task of tribal church planting. Pray for us as we seek to see five more people groups reached with the Gospel in Paraguay. Pray for more workers to go into these tribal areas, learn the language and culture, and dedicate themselves to the challenge of church planting.
We are presently on home assignment. The past couple of months have flown by very quickly. We have been traveling along the east coast visiting family, friends, and churches in Florida, South Carolina, New York, and Ontario.
This summer we have been involved in teaching and helping in five different weeks of Vacation Bible School. What a joy it has been to be able to teach and interact with literally hundreds of kids and work alongside so many dedicated folks desiring to impact their community for Christ!
This fall we have a number of meetings scheduled at missions conferences, retreats, Christian schools, home groups, etc. We are excited to share about what God is doing in building His church in Paraguay and around the world. If we can share in your church, please let us know.
In June, Benjamin graduated from high school along with three other Paraguay MK’s. You can pray for him and for our other Paraguay MK’s as they transition back to the US for university or Bible college. Ben has started classes at BJU in South Carolina as a Math Education major. Pray for his continued adjustment and transition to life in the US.
Education Camps are when many of our Paraguay MK’s are able to get together for a fun-filled week of learning interesting things, doing activities, going on field trips, and growing together.
We praise the Lord for a great week. Mark taught elementary science as Detective O’Casey helping his Junior Detectives discover some of the amazing things in God’s creation. Mark also taught the older students the computer program Google Sketchup helping them learn this fascinating tool for generating 3-dimensional images with the computer. Janet kept busy helping Detective O’Casey and also assisting with art, food preparation, etc. These Ed Camps are certainly a highlight for all our MK’s and especially for those who homeschool and live in remote locations.
Down here in South America, June to August is our wintertime. The temperatures vary from down to freezing with frost up to 100 degrees. You never know from day to day what the weather might bring!
Ben went to the US for 8 weeks during this time to work, get his US driver’s license, and spend time with relatives in SC and FL. Ben is starting his senior year, and we are thankful for this opportunity for him to start adjusting to life in the US.
Josh missed his big brother, but he enjoyed some time with some of his friends during our school break.
Education Camps are fun-filled weeks when our Paraguay MK’s get together for a time of learning and growing academically, spiritually, and socially.
This Ed Camp we had Josh and Beka Holbrook come from FL to help us out. Josh is an educational specialist at the Palm Beach Zoo specializing in reptiles and amphibians.
The Chaco where we live is an incredible place teeming with all kinds of reptiles and amphibians. Josh Holbrook had fun collecting many different kinds of snakes, frogs, toads, lizards, etc. to bring in to class to show the students. This was a great way for our kids to see what a great God and Creator we have.
Check out the photos in our new album: Ed Camp Photos
We praise the Lord that we have received an abundance of rain this rainy season. The past two years, we have had severe drought conditions. Tribal people’s gardens have been scorched causing a lack of food. Many of our friends and neighbors are ranchers and farmers and have lost crops and cattle due to the drought. Everyone is so thankful that this year we have received a normal amount of rain.
We don’t have wells or a town water supply. We have to collect rainwater in underground cisterns to last us throughout the dry season which usually runs from May to October. We are thrilled that our cisterns are basically full! Josh and his friends have also enjoyed playing in the rain and mud!
Recently, the Sanapana tribe here in Paraguay received Scripture portions printed in their own language. This is the first time in their history that they have been able to read God’s Word in their own language. The people are excited and have a desire to read God’s Word. Pray that they will understand and apply the truths of God’s Word to their daily lives!