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End of year Blog!

For me the end of the year is a time of reflection. Looking back for me is always a time in which thankfulness overwhelms my soul. God has carried me through another year by his faithful hand.

One of the great joys of looking back is being reminded of what was accomplished in ministry. My role here has become very multifaceted. I preach, I teach, I build, I am a taxi driver, a consultant, a businessmen manager, a bank lender, etc. You name it and I have probably attempted it. As I reflect back, I am reminded that all of the things I do here in ministry comes from the power of a group effort.

If I could say “Thank you!” a million times, I would. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! To all of you who have supported our ministry here in Honduras. Thank you for you generosity! Thank you for your sacrifice! Thank you for your compassion to see the Word of God preached in all parts of the globe.

We usually try to send out personal thank you´s to all who give to our ministry throughout the year, but due to the poor mailing system here in Honduras it was not possible for us to do so this year, but know for sure you are not forgotten or overlooked or unappreciated. Every month as I look over our finances I read down the list of who gave and praise God for everyone of you…You are a huge part of this ministry…Never think we are not appreciative of you sacrifice. Without you we would not be here. To me you are family.

Some of the highlights of my year was finishing the church in Ukemupe. We had about 200 people come to the inauguration service in which the Gospel of Jesus Christ was preached. The new building has been a blessing and we have been using it for the past 5-6 months. Hoping to finish up a few small things in 2017, a porch, some ceramic and a little painting and landscaping.

I have a desire to purchase a small piece of land which would extend the church property and give the kids some room to play and also give us the opportunity to have soccer tournaments in which we could evangelize local youth. Soccer here draws out the youth like honey to a bear.

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Getting involved in local culture and events is important to us. When the people see a genuine interest in them they are more apt to open up to you. Holidays, parades and special events are almost always attended by our family.

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Carla´s baby boy

This February we are going to be building a small house for a single mom of four named Carla. We have a work team coming down from CFC in Connecticut to help with the project. Carla has been faithful in the church for the last 4 years. Her baby above would regularly get woken up in the night from raindrops in his bed which her dilapidated roof couldn’t keep out.

Please continue to pray for us and our family as the dynamics of missions life can be challenging.

Again I want to thank all of you for you generosity in giving to our ministry. We felt especially loved this Christmas with some giving extra one time donations. Without extra one time gifts we wouldn’t survive financially. We appreciate your love for us and the ministry here in Honduras. You are loved and appreciated!

 

 

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Honduras Update!

As always, life has been busy. Busy is good if you like to work. If you don’t like to work you may not want to work in the ministry.

Last week I helped a brother (Naum) in our church replace his roof. We tore off the old roof and replaced it with a new one. Last week was extremely windy and one of the pieces of metal roofing was lifted right of the ground by a gust. The corner of the metal sheet landed on the foot of Naum’s wife. It cut her foot wide open. I jumped off the roof to take a look at her injury and it definitely needed stitches. I called Jennie to pick her up and take her to the clinic. She didn’t want to go because she had no money to pay the bill…I told her not to worry about it…we would take care of the cost.

I saw her at church last Sunday. Her foot is healing up nice.

Before that, Jennie’s old roommate from WOLBI came to visit with 3 daughters in tow. It was nice to have some other Gringos for my kids to play with. It was nice to catch up and have them help out with some ministry. They even sang for the church one Sunday morning.

Thanksgiving is always a time of reflection for me. A time in which I praise God for all of His provisions in my life. I thank God for all of you who support us and our ministry here in Honduras. God is using your generosity to bless us and this country.

This thanksgiving we celebrated like North Americans. We bought a turkey and ham and made pies and stuffing…It was wonderful! We invited a few families from our local church to experience the feast. They were fascinated with the stuffing…Yeah, it’s not a normal dish here.

I’ve been preaching through the book of 1 John. Usually preach about every other week.

For the Day of The Bible, we made a large sign and the whole church marched through the village carrying the sign and singing Hymns. Some stuff we do here is so different.

Our church van motor just blew. The church has been trying to raise money to get it fixed. It is used to transport people to church, funerals, the hospital and all kinds of other places. Hoping it is fixed soon as some people need to walk over 4 miles to get to church.

Funny to see the reaction to the US presidential election here. I’m certain some Hondurans had more interest in the outcome than I did…They are not looking forward to the wall…..Hahahaha!

Thanks for all you do for us! You are appreciated…

Tim

 
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Posted by on December 5, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

No Ordinary Sunday

This past Sunday was no ordinary Sunday for us. Usually, Sunday is a day for our family to sleep a little later in the morning and get ready for church at our own leisurely pace. Church here doesn’t start until 10:30am. And even then, that is a “Honduran” 10:30am which could mean closer to 11:00am. It is our only day to sleep in, since the work week here is full days Monday through Friday with a half a day on Saturday. We cherish our Sunday mornings.
This last Sunday morning began with an early phone call from our Pastor. A woman in our congregation had passed away late the night before. Funerals here are very different from what we are used to in the States. They usually begin at the moment the person passes away and last for about 24 hours until the burial. Close family and friends will stay all night, and during the day other friends from the village will come to pay their respects. And we are not talking about just the adults! Entire families with children of all ages arrive. The family of the deceased, no matter how poor, is expected to feed everyone who shows up. It is a great way for our church to act as the hands and feet of Christ, donating money to help with the cost, cooking, serving, consoling the family. So our usual Sunday was going to be a day long funeral instead.
I quickly got ready and walked down the road to a friend’s house. We usually give their family a ride to church. I wanted to warn them that this was not going to be a normal Sunday. We were probably going to be out for most of the day. When I arrived, my friend informed me that there was going to be another funeral that day as well. Two teenage boys had been shot and killed within a block of our house. As he’s telling me the story, I realized that I had heard the shots that had killed them. The morning before, gun shots echoed very close to our house. I had told my kids to go shut our front door, since we usually leave it wide open when we are home. It never occurred to me that the shots were aimed at people. It was 10:00am and broad daylight when they went off. How could that be possible!
As we headed to the funeral, I couldn’t stop thinking about the young boys. I don’t know how many of you remember that our house was broken into a little over a year ago. The police caught the people who did it. They were just kids, a 14 year old boy and his 9 year old brother. The authorities had tried to bring them to a juvenile detention center to get them help. When they arrived, they were told the center was too full and were sent home. Our house was only one of many that they had robbed. Yet, there was nothing the police could do about it and the kids learned that they could get away with it. Why not steal if you can’t be punished? A friend of ours even approached the boys and urged them to change their ways. He warned them that stealing from the wrong person would land them an early grave. Why not hand your life over to Jesus and let Him change your ways? Yet, they didn’t heed the warning. The older brother was one of the two teenagers that had been shot and killed that morning. They had crossed the wrong person and their chance to change was over!
Knowing that death is a natural part of life didn’t make the hurt any easier to bear. As we laid hermana Remelia to rest, I praised God that she had lived a long, beautiful life. Her kids and grand kids, although hurting, had a lifetime of memories and love to cherish. And I prayed for the youth of Honduras. In a country where violence and crime is the norm and many children grow up without knowing the love of a parent, what does their future hold? Pray for them! Pray that the church can reach the youth of Honduras. They are the future of this country.

Love Jennie

 
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Posted by on October 28, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

Honduras Update!

So as many of you know, last month we had the grand opening of our new church. It has been a huge blessing. The extra space was desperately needed. Just last week we had over 100 people come for our special kids service”Dia del Niño.” It would have been uncomfortable trying to squeeze everyone into the old church. Would have felt like a can of sardines.

After the church build, I took some time to finish the walls and install a metal roof onto the house we are building for our family. It’s been a slow process, but we are making advances little by little.

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Metal Roof Installed on our House

Last week I played Mr. Mom as Jennie and Patience left for the week to help out with a ladies conference. They helped decorate and teach. Jennie said they had over 220 Honduran ladies attend the conference. All I know is that I am not meant to be a stay at home mom…just happy the kids survived my cooking for the week.

Was nice to get Patience back from WOL NY. She left a hole when she was gone and we missed her. She came back with Cheri Stimson who visited for the week. It’s always good for Jennies psyche when we have guests even though its hard when they leave.

Hoping God provides the funds for me to start a new project soon. Carla a lady in our church with small children needs a new house. You can read more about it under the projects tab. Jennie really has a heart for her and would love to see her living situation improved. Carla works as a maid and gets paid about $0.76 cents a day…”A DAY”…plus food.

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Carla’s current house

There is a real joy in helping out someone who has very little. Even though Carla works full time, she will never be able to improve her financial situation without help. If you make minimum wage…consider yourself blessed…Many…Many, can only dream of income like that.

Pray for our kids who have been struggling with missing life in the USA. It’s been really difficult for some to adjust to life here.

Pray for Jennie as she home-schools the children.

Pray for funds to continue doing ministry.

Thanks for all of you who support us with your finances and prayers. You are a blessing and we appreciate you.

Blessings

Tim

 
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Posted by on September 23, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

Grand Opening!

Ministry:

This past month was exciting! All of our hard work on our new church build finally came to an end as we celebrated with a grand opening ceremony. The ceremony drew folks from all of the surrounding villages and we had 190 people show up to see the new church and participate in the inauguration service.

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Where’s Pete? See if you can find Jennies Dad.

Thanks to all of you who helped with this project. God is using your generosity to reach the people in this country.

It was nice to have Jennies folks with us for 3 weeks. They put in long hours of work to help us finish. They were a huge help during the last push.

Also wanted to give a “shout out” to all who donated for the chairs. It came down to the wire but y’all came through! Thanks for your faithfulness.

While it is nice to have this project under our belts, I miss the comradery of working together with my Honduran brothers. Need to start another church plant soon so we can get back to it.

Had a baptism in which 5 people followed in the obedience of Jesus. Always a blessing!

Personal project:

After the inauguration ceremony, I spent a little time taking apart my broken Pick-up and turning it into a trailer.

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Turned the bed of my Ford ranger into a trailer.

I tend to find myself doing things I would have never considered doing in the States…But  here, when life gives you a broken truck, you make a trailer.

Family:

The kids enjoyed having their grandparents here for 3 weeks.

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Lillie teaching the oldies the art of “The Selfie”

Patience is still working at WOL Island. She comes home in about 3 weeks. We’ve missed her but are super proud of her for giving up her summer to do ministry.

Future:

Looking to buy a piece of land for a new church plant in the mountains of Izopo. I have about half of the funds needed to buy the land. Pray for us as this will be a challenging plant due to poor access to the village. The roads wash out during rainy season which makes bringing materials very challenging.

Also hoping to get a roof on our house soon. The rain has been reaking havoc on the foundation and has caused it to sink a little.

Thanks:

Thanks for all of your support. Your prayers and financial gifts allow us to minister here. There is not a day that passes in which we are not thankful. You are this ministry.

 
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Posted by on August 11, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

Update, Newsletter, Blog post or whatever else you want to call it.

Thanks:

Just wanted to start off by saying thank you to all of you who faithfully support us. Your prayers and financial gifts keep us going. Thank you so much!

Financial update:

To be honest, our financial situation brings me joy and stress both at the same time. Let me explain. When we left for the mission field we had about 55 individual monthly supporters. That is people who pledged to give a certain amount every month so that we maintained a steady budget. We are now down to about 30. That is the stress part, we have lost a little over 1/3 of our monthly support. You may not realize, but the reason missionaries constantly ask for support is because they constantly are losing it…that is just the nature of missions.

The joy part comes from the fact that despite losing 1/3 of our monthly support, we are still here and we have not starved to death. Just when I think we wont make it, someone gives us a onetime gift that carries us through another month. It helps remind me that God is still in control…that brings me Joy. Don’t ever think a one time gift isn’t helpful…we love you one time givers too!

Another joy comes from donations towards projects. Even though project money doesn’t go directly towards our family needs, It frees up money that we would have pulled out of our own budget to do ministry.

Church build update:

The church build has been going great. All of the money has been provided to finish the church. Now it is just a matter of time. I am thinking we will be finishing up in about 3 weeks.

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As you can see from the image above, the windows have been installed and next is the metal bars. (To keep the crooks out)IMG_0465

Here you can see the front porch railing has been installed and is ready for polyurethane.

I wish I could express to you how excited these Hondurans are about this church…Pastor Dolvin is constantly saying, “Never in my dreams could have I imagined preaching in a church like this…It is so beautiful.” I hope you know that your generosity has a huge impact on the peoples hearts of our humble village church of Ocumupe!

Family:

We lost our oldest daughter to WOL Island for the summer. This is the first time any of our kids will be away for more than a few weeks. We miss her, but are proud that she was willing to give up her summer to work in ministry for free.

The other kids continue to keep Jennie busy as she schools and maintains the house. Sometimes she can get stir crazy in the house, so we have been doing more joint shopping trips to the city. It gives us time together away from our troop of crazy gorillas.

This past week I spent a good part of my time getting to know our toilet more personally. Something nasty hit me like a train and my internals are still recuperating.

Jennies Parents come for a visit in a week and will be here for three weeks. We are looking forward to that.

My truck died and I am currently taking it apart to make a trailer. I figured, why not…Once I finish taking it apart I will try selling some of it to the junkers and weld a trailer hitch onto the bed. Wallah!!! 100% hillbilly trailer.

Our house project is on hold until after the church is completed and we get some funds to put a roof on.

Future Church plant:

As we finish up the church, we have been planing for future ministry and outreach opportunities. While exploring our local area I discovered a village of about 400 in a valley about a half an hour from our current local church. The village is impossible to get to without a rugged 4 wheel drive vehicle and during rainy season only by horse or mule. There is currently no church in this village…We found a piece of land for sale pretty central to the populace and are praying for the funds to buy it. We will use it to build a church. The people need a place to hear the word of God. The lot is only about a thousand us dollars ($1000.00)

Random:

The fruit-flies have been unbelievable this year. We literally have thousands of them in our house.

We bought Lillie a baby turtle and the little girls left it out which turned into our dog eating it…don’t worry, she vomited it up later.

Found a place that makes the most amazing tortillas. Not sure about the sanitary code, but they were delicious.

Talked to a Honduran who believed that if a pregnant woman looks at a rainbow, her baby will be born with problems.

Your prayers matter,

Tim

 

 
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Posted by on June 30, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

Swinging the Hammer

Lots of ministry is done by swinging a hammer! Yes, I have been preaching, but it seems the majority of my time this past month has been spent building. I told myself that as long as the money keeps coming in for our new church build, I would continue to spend my time helping with the construction process. Praise the Lord! I think we have the funds to complete Phase #1 of our new church in the village of Ocumupe.

We are hoping to finish within the next couple of months. You are all invited to the inauguration ceremony which we will schedule upon completion. I know most can’t hop on a plane for a weekend visit to Honduras, but if you can you are welcome and we would love to have you. We’ll even feed you if you come.

Happy our friend Lauren came for a visit…The comradery for Jennie is a blessing. She has taken the time to visit us every year!

We got our new residency cards for the year! Never fun to sit around in the hot, smelly immigration office.

We have one car running well, praise God!

Patience is leaving with Lauren in a week to work on WOL Island in N.Y. for the summer.

I could keep babbling, but instead of listening to that, check out our video below.

Thanks for your prayers and support…we couldn’t do it without you!

 
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Posted by on May 26, 2016 in Uncategorized