What a gathering! What a celebration! What a blessing to mark 20 years of service in Jesus’ name along the border of Mexico and the U.S.! More than 200 Faith Ministry families, volunteers and staff attended a service in the Reynosa church and then gathered in the courtyard for a meal of tamales on October 18. Now, renewed, we resume our work constructing houses, helping the sick, educating and feeding the young.
In our service on Oct. 18, founder and emeritus director Deantin Guerra told of the early days and talked about the vision for Faith Ministry that began with a medical clinic and then evolved to bring hundreds of teams of volunteers to Mexico to build homes for families living in the direst conditions. Board president Ken MacDonald talked about the ministry’s work today, and intern Colleen Cook talked about the work yet to be done. On hand were not only staff, current and former board members, families and two teams of volunteers set to work the following week, but representatives, all the way from Mexico City, of Mexico’s Netzer Presbytery, with whom Faith Ministry partners. Musicians performed, and ladies prepared more than 1,500 tamales!
So far this year we’ve built 17 homes in Reynosa and seven in Miguel Aléman. We’re planning to build another eight before the end of the year. We also have five teams scheduled already for next year. It’s a great time to begin planning to bring your team! We’ve also been doing some remodeling in conjunction with the anniversary to better accommodate teams. At the Reynosa complex, the main hallway was extended outwards so that, yes, now you can walk the corridor without waiting for someone to close a door. We’ve also covered it with corrugated metal. We’ve improved the kitchen upstairs, the bathrooms downstairs, the volunteers’ quarters and storage rooms.
The 12-member Board of Directors, which meets monthly by teleconference and semiannually in person, timed its October meeting with the anniversary. The Board was also able to take part in the dedication of a home for a Reynosa family who worked with a team from Alabama that week.
We’re working on the last of four houses from our summer challenge project. Faith Ministry supporters came through and contributed enough to match donations from two wonderful sponsors. The upshot-FOUR families are getting homes!
We’ll soon begin working on our Christmas activities with families and children in our three service areas. We’re planning to hold fiestas in our three churches in Reynosa, Miguel Aléman and Naranjito and again visit families in the colonias to take food packages, clothes and blankets and to pray with them. If you or your church would like to help with this effort please let David know soon to help us plan.
Many blessings as we move toward Thanksgiving. We have much to be thankful for!