Discipleship Update

There is currently a line up of ladies who will be taking the discipleship class in upcoming weeks.  It has been exciting to grow in fellowship with the sisters here as we get together for Bible studies, or stay after services to talk and share with each other. Right now we are praying that these ladies grow in their relationship with Jesus, and grow in Knowledge of Him, and also as He leads, that they would serve Him. Between Gabriela, Sullen and myself, we'll get to teach either one or more of those sisters who are willing to take discipleship class.


Julipsi is a young girl who recently turned 14 years old. Gabriela spent the better part of last year taking her through the discipleship course. She completed three volumes and is now teaching two other young girls, Sherling and Melissa. It is awesome to see God using her as He is. Julipsi is serving in worship, and will also start helping in children's ministry this month with Karla. Katherine may also be giving this course with Giselle, another young girl. 

fROM LEFT TO rIGHT: sHERLING, mELISSA, jULIPSI

Please pray overall for each sister lined up for discipleship. Here are their names: Heydi, Carolina, Carmen, Jaqueline, Kenya, Mabel, Rafaela, Yanina, Estela and Giselle. Pray that they would hunger for God's truth, and that they would seek His face. Please pray for those of us that are giving discipleship classes, that God would give us His wisdom.

Laundry Room

Hello Everyone,

We recently came across a need for the laundry room here on the facility to be re-painted. The current paint is very old and is chipping and lot of it has fallen or is currently peeling off the walls. I have tried to clean the walls, but the paint comes right off onto the rags. It has a dingy, dirty look to it. As we anticipate hosting teams in the future, we would like for the laundry facility to be a fresh, welcoming area to be in when people need to do their laundry. To paint the walls and the cabinets it will cost $150. Please consider prayerfully giving towards this project. The sooner we can get it painted, the more prepared we will be for visitors at any time. We recently had a donation of U$100 thank you Jesus so just short U$50.

I included a picture of the colors that I thought would look nice!

God bless you, and thank you for supporting us!

If you are donating toward this project send a email to Greg letting him know so the funds are set apart correctly. greg@graceministriesint.com

2016 Went Bye In A Flash!

Here is an update of some events that took place towards the end of last year, 2016

God has been at work in many ways. One of them has been in uniting a few of the couples in marriage! This has been answered prayer, considering what these couples have come through and how God is now being honored in their lives. It has been exciting to see, and this opens up doors of opportunity for them now in ministry! 

During Christmas, there were many events. We collected donations from willing givers and were able to put together Christmas baskets for families in need. They included basic food items like rice, beans, sugar, salt, cookies, oil, and coffee, along with laundry detergent, matches and toilet paper. We put together 8 total. Also, a few of the ladies gave their time one afternoon to help bake over 300 cookies! We made some to take to the hospital as part of a small care package that included soap and toilet paper. Gabriela, Kenya, and myself went the next day to hand out 25 packages at the hospital. There was even enough to hand out a few cookies to the staff. 

The rest of the cookies we gave out during Sunday night church service with hot cafe latte's (minus the espresso, just instant coffee but still delicious!)

The kids were also blessed in a big way, receiving Christmas gifts and a small dinner which was provided for by a few ladies who had sent things down from the states. They were so excited!

We also had our annual women's Christmas dinner where we had about 35 women come out and participate. 

So much has gone on this past month which makes us excited to see what God has in store for this upcoming year. He is faithful! 

We appreciate your prayers and support! 

Love and Blessings,

Angela

Discipleship

Ismenia and Jassharys are two young ladies that I am giving discipleship class to. They both have received Jesus as their Lord and Savior and are growing in their walk with Him. Ismenia is currently facing a trial that she feels is out of her control. It caused her to become discouraged, leaving some of her homework incomplete. I encouraged her with Jesus’ words that “The Father knows what we have need of before we even ask Him” Matthew 6. I also reminded her that trials are used to strengthen our faith, and that it is something to be expected in this life and in our walk. Please pray for her heart to be strengthened as she continues to walk forward in faith.

In the picture to the right, Jassharys is on the left and Ismenia is on the right.

Both of these young ladies are learning the basics of the Christian faith and have a desire to know God more!  Please pray for them as they seek Him through His word!

Ministering in the School

Here is a video that I took at the school. The first part shows the students reciting their memory verse, John 1:1. After that, you can seen them sing the Spanish version of "I’m in the Lord’s Army." They love that song!  It blesses me to hear how excited they get when it’s our time. They pay attention and love to recite their verses by memory. Please keep these kids in your prayers!

School is in session!!!

The school that I visit in zone 7, about a 15 minute walk from our house, allowed me to teach in two different classes this year. I teach preschool kids, and a 4th grade class. They allowed me 20 minutes in each. Since the time is short, I am going to try to make the best of it by giving the lessons while at the same time incorporating fun activities. On my first day of class with the 4th graders, two weeks ago, I did a memory activity with them. They memorized John 1:1-“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Today when I went back they were all eager to recite the verse again. Only 8 students said it correctly, though.  So, I promised them a prize for next week. As for the rest of the lessons throughout the year, I will be taking them through the Gospel. Today I started with teaching them about God as Creator and the seven days of creation. Next week will be about His holiness. After that will be about our sin, then Christs’ sacrifice, repentance, faith, baptism, and finally our new life in Him. One topic each week.After this series, I will probably take them through the armor of God. I will be praying about that.

Please pray for my effectiveness in teaching the kids the Gospel. They really do need to know truth. I have noticed that they are still confused as to how to get to heaven. Many of them still believe it is by good works. Pray that they come to the knowledge of salvation in Christ only!

Much love,

Angela

Hospital donations

A sister that visited the church, but has since moved to Managua, had donated toilet paper, tooth brushes/paste, and soap for the hospital ministry. There was enough to make a small package for 24 people, and so over a couple of weeks, I would take a few at a time. People are always happy to receive items like those, especially since they aren’t provided in the hospital.  They are also blessed to hear a word of encouragement. Jesus meets them right there in their need and I like to be a part of that! 

Katherine - A youth serving Christ

Hi All,

Katherine, one of our youth, helps out in youth center on Tuesdays. She has been part of this ministry for some time now, and I recently asked if she would share about it. Here is the translation of the letter she wrote:

“Each Tuesday I do youth center with the kids, and for me this small time is very appreciated.  I like to take advantage of it so that the boys and girls can learn to really love Jesus.  I have much desire to serve Jesus in this way, helping kids to be motivated in His ways.  It gives me joy to see the kids learn because many of them do not know how to pray or that God loves them.  Many of them have learned by now, and they like to listen to new Bible stories.  I feel joyful to be helping in kids ministry, but many times it is sad to see that after youth center, in their homes or in the park, some of the same kids say bad words and even drink and smoke because other youth offer it to them.  Many times it is because they do not live in a Christian environment, and their families let them roam around with kids that don’t have interest in Jesus.  This is why I feel happy during this time of youth center where I can help them the way God wants, and He wants us to be like children.  They always come happy to be in youth center playing and learning of Jesus.”

- Katherine

Pictures of the Hospital Ministry -- Happy New Year!

This last month we were able to visit the hospital and meet some of the needs of the sick during the Holidays!

During Christmas last month, I took some small packs to the hospital with me. They included water, bread/cookies, toilet paper and tracks. People were happy to receive them, and more importantly, they were blessed to be reminded of Jesus in Isaiah 9:6-

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

I tried to point out some positives about them being there in the hospital during Christmas time, like the fact that they are not caught up in the stress of event/activity preparations like everyone else, but rather they can actually be still and remember why we celebrate that time. They were encouraged to be reminded of who Jesus is to us, and some (Christian women) were already encouraging themselves in the Lord before I had gotten there. One girl even said “Who do you see here that’s sad??” So, that was a blessing for me, too, and we had a laugh.

Please keep the hospital ministry in prayer, and specifically that God would raise up more people to visit each week. We also would love to take goodies to them regularly, like the things I mentioned above. Support in that would also greatly help!

Preparing for another year in Nicaragua!

Hi Everyone!

I wanted to say a big THANK YOU to those who helped with financial support of my residency paperwork and traveling costs. Any little bit helps us greatly, and it is encouraging to receive your support! Our first trip to take care of residency paperwork usually consists of turning in all of the paperwork and allowing them to revise it and let us know should there be anything missing. After that, it is a fifteen day wait for the paperwork to get processed and officially approved. My residency card will be ready for me to go and pick up on the 13th of December, but as of now, we still have not set a date to travel as we are waiting for God to provide the finances for this trip. Please keep this in prayer. Pray for residency approval without any setbacks.

Thank you again and God bless you!

Love Angela

Bible Day

Nicaragua is celebrating Dia de la Biblia (Day of the Bible) this week.  It marks another year since the Bible was translated into Spanish. Each year the church as a whole comes together on the last Sunday of September to march in a parade that leads to Central Park, where they do a service to celebrate the anniversary. But, leading up to that, the entire week, the different churches throughout Nueva Guinea are allowed to participate in a session of Bible reading for a space of time allotted to them. Right on the corner of “calle central” or central street, there is a canopy with a big open Bible display with the text “Your word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light to my path” Psalm 119:105. Today, Thursday, our church was given five hours from 12pm-5pm to read the book of Proverbs. It was open for whomever was willing to come out and participate. From our church, different youth along with Pastor Carlos and his daughters, myself and others read. There is a reason we have such freedom to spread the word of God in this manner, out in the open and without being harassed. As we know in other countries that is unheard of and here even though the word is preached in such a manner, there are still so many people who don’t have a personal relationship with Christ. So, as the Bible is being read cover to cover this week out on the main street, in the busiest part of the city, pray for people to have ears to hear. Pray that people’s hearts would be open to receive the word of Truth and believe.  

An update on Anna, Elder’s sister

About two weeks ago, I got to take Anna out for a couple of hours to spend some time with her. God provided for her in a special way through a donation, so I was able to take her out for ice cream, some school supplies, and even a little something for her family. I tried to talk with her and asked how she was doing, but she seemed a little bit closed off, which I understood. I talked more with her mom Teresa and her aunt Fran, whoboth say that she is doing better, but still of course has some hard days. They sayshe plays a lot with younger cousins that she lives next to, and that she hides her feelings while she is having fun. Her mom also said that she has been the stronger one of the two because on those days when she is not able to cope, Anna will encourage her to be strong. Both Elder and Anna went to the same school, and during recess would hang out together. Now that Elder is not there, that time is difficult for her. One day Anna was so sure that she saw Elder at school, but it was a boy who looked just like him. He came right up to her classroom looking inside and she couldn’t stop staring at him. Thinking she saw him made her cry. Another time, she thought she kept hearing a teacher at school from a classroom down the hall calling Elder’s nameout loud. Later on she went to ask the teacher if she has a student named Elder in her class, and she said no. So, Anna has gone through a rough time in dealing with her brothers’ passing. She has started to come around again for youth center, but we haven’t seen her in church services. Overall, she seems to be doing ok on the outside, but we know that she is hurting still.
Please keep Anna and her family in your prayers.
Pray that the entire family would come to know Jesus personally through their difficult time. Pray also that He would heal their broken hearts and bind up their wounds

Youth Center Kid Drowns

Last year I wrote a blog about a boy named Elder. He was 9 years old. Sadly, we found out last Thursday that he drowned in the Laguna (a small river like place where people/kids go all the time) just down the way from us, and died. When I first heard the news, it didn't register right away because I couldn't believe it. If you read my blog about him, you will get to know a bit of who he was. It struck me deeply because he was on my heart often, and I couldn't help but see his need for Jesus. I think it hit everyone pretty hard because he was well know by all. He and his sister Ana would come together to Sunday school and to youth center. Lately it had just been Ana coming because Elder had stopped coming to church all together. Ana and Elder were very close, and they were together almost all of the time. She is having a really hard time. They did the "vela" which is the same thing as a wake or viewing, the same day he passed. People stayed outside the house and inside, all night long until the next day when they did the burial. When I saw Ana, she looked like she had been crying, but that first day she held up ok, laughing and keeping busy passing out coffee and bread to those who stayed over night. But it was as we got to the burial site the next day that she and her mom really broke down. I think that of all the people in their family, Ana is going to have the toughest time getting through this. She is 11 years old.
Please keep their family in prayer. This includes the older youth boys Elmer and Daniel, Dona Tana (Elder's grandma), Tanya (his aunt), and Ana Elder's sister. Also for his parents. I have been praying that God would use this difficult time to bring the family close to Himself. The entire family needs Jesus. 

Elder at Youth Center

Experiencing Nueva Guinea! A blog by Bethany Sanger and Alexis Montoya

Since I have been here I have gone to the school which was an experience in itself. The first time I went was with Nubia and I was helping the kids glue on eyes for their craft. I guess I forgot to help one girl, so she was telling me “La pega por favor” which means “the glue please”. Of course at the time I had no idea what that meant. So I was just sitting there holding the glue in my hand dumbfounded. Anyways, the little girl got her glue and I embarrassingly went on with my day.

                Besides going to the school every Thursday and Friday, we have youth center every Tuesday, Wednesday, and twice on Friday, once in the afternoon and once at night. Friday night youth is pretty fun because you get to see how they act and you realize how similar you are to them. Even though we could be living thousands of miles away and have totally different lives, a youth is still a youth. Being with them helps me realize how much friends can change how you act. It is pretty evident that friends play a pretty big part in your life, but it’s the friends you choose to hang out with that make the difference in how you go about your way. Another adventure is going to Pali, the grocery store. When I first went I dreaded the walk there, because I wasn’t used to the heat and humidity, or being stared at by everyone. When we finally arrived at Pali, I caught someone taking a picture of me, I also heard people saying “la gringa”. I guess it is not common to see a young girl with white skin, blond hair and blue eyes here in Nicaragua. My experiences here have been pretty exciting and eventful and there is still more to come.

Bethany

See below the pictures for Alexis's blog!

Since I have been here I have been to many different places. I’ve been to the market, the schools, to parks and to peoples’ houses to evangelize, and on Bible study nights. My time here has been exciting, interesting, and great, and I’ve made many memories. I’ve been learning more Spanish, it’s been going well. I’ve learned a lot more. I have also cooked. Bethany and I cook on Sundays, so we will be able to make different dishes when we get home. Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday, there is youth center and Beth and I go play with the kids. They always want to ask us how to say things in English. They always have plenty of things to ask us and tell us, even if we don’t know what they are saying. They make you feel really comfy, real quick. Beth and I throughout the day are normally with Nathaniel and Lydia. Nathaniel is always running everywhere around. He definitely keeps you busy whether chasing him everywhere or playing with him. Lydia is normally always happy and has a smile on her face (unless she is tired). That little girl never stops moving. She always has her arms in the air and her legs kicking. She also keeps you busy just like her brother. My time here has been great, and it seems to be going by very quickly. I’m of course missing home and everybody, but I really enjoy being here.

From Alexis

Reaching the Youth of Neuva Guinea with Bethany and Alexis

This is a blog showing God's work with the youth of our zone shown through the lives of Bethany and Alexis, two missionary interns that are here to serve God for 2 months!

 Bethany and Alexis, two of our youth from CCSGV, have been here now for three weeks today. They have come a long way in their interaction with the young girls that come to the church. During youth center, they were playing the human knot, steal the bacon and dodge ball. They still have a ways to go with their Spanish, but at least they still get out there to interact. Their next challenge is communicating with the older girls, girls their age, which they seem to be more shy about. Beth and Alexis wrote Katherine letters and had me translate them for her. Katherine in turn wrote to them and I translated the same. That has been their way of opening up communication and it works.

They have continued to bless us with the small ways that they serve. They have a schedule that they stick to.  After lunches, they wash dishes (everyday). They help with youth center on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Thursday and Friday mornings they go with Nubia and I to the schools. Saturday is their day to sweep and mop the house and porches, and Sundays they cook together. Yesterday they made us popcorn chicken with baked potatoes and pineapple! Next week they want to make BBQ chicken pizza with cilantro. I had told Alexis that we didn't have the right kind of cheese right now to make pizza, and she replied "We don't need cheese. Just BBQ sauce, chicken and cilantro"......this should be interesting. Keep them in prayer for the rest of their time here. Pray that they may break out of their comfort zones and reach out to other youth so that they can have a richer experience while they are here.

Faith in Jesus alone

If you remember my newsletter, I talked about the seven week study that I am doing with the kids on the Gospel. This week, they learned about what it means to put our faith in Jesus. They know that God exists, but they have trouble remembering that God is three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. So when I ask who we need to put our faith in, they answer: Dios (God). When I ask who died on the cross, they say "Dios". So, not a bad response at all.....it's the truth. But what I have to keep reiterating is that yes it is God, but in Jesus Christ His Son, specifically.  They are fourth graders, so I try not to complicate it for them, but I do at least want to help them to know the basics. So, this week they got a memory verse, Ephesians 2:8 "Porque por gracia sois salvo por medio de la fe; y esto no de vosotros, pues es don de Dios" "Because by grace you are saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God"

They have a week to memorize it so I am hoping that they do. Next week, we will go over verse 9 "no por obras para que nadie se glorie"  "not of works, lest anyone should boast"

I know that I can teach them what I can, and God can do the work in their hearts. Not only that, but they take these scriptures home where their parents might take interest! 

Back in Nica

It is good to be back in Nicaragua! During the last few days of my visit to the States, I had been looking forward to getting back into my normal schedule, and into ministry. I came with Alexis and Bethany and anytime youth come from the states, the youth here from Nica want to get to know them, and hang out around them the entire time. So far both Alexis and Bethany have been helping out a lot with events like Nathanael's birthday party and Dia del Nino (kids day). There had been a need for extra helping hands, and they have been busy helping however they can.  The last few nights, they have been eagerly asking me to sit with them and teach them basic Spanish words and phrases so that they can communicate with the young girls here like Katherine and Karla (pastor Carlos' daughter). I know that they could all get a long well if it weren't for the language barrier, but God can work even through that. The other night before we went to bed we read together, and I was encouraging them with Colossians 3:17 "And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him." As long as Jesus is their focus first, He can bring fruit out of their service here, and also help them build godly relationships with other youth that will last even when they leave.

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