FALL NEWSLETTER FROM THE HARDS - MARC ALASKA
LIVING IN THE INNER CITY
Sad to say that little to no evangelism has taken place in the inner city of San Luis Potosi in the last three years. Just 1/2 block away from the Ontañon Church of Christ one of the inner city gangs have built an altar to Satan and Death (Santa Muerte - Holy Death). This altar was not there 3 years ago. Drugs are sold in plain sight at this same altar day or night. You don't see kids out after dark playing in the streets like before. Stores are closed earlier.
On a positive note the neighbors around the church are overwhelmed with our return. October 20, we opened up the church to the neighbors for a "Movie Night", Popcorn, Pop and a Christian Movie. The movie started and no neighbors. I told one of the Bible College students "come with me, I'm going to show you how to evangelize this neighborhood": "Don't be afraid and show no fear of them, they are our neighbors and friends."
We went straight to the Satanic altar. Loud music was blaring, the smell of marijuana was strong in the air, they were dealing drugs out of the back of a car. Some of the kids were stone cold drunk or high. This is a typical Saturday night event for them. I went right into the middle of their circle and re invited them to the movie which was playing just a 1/2 block away. For two weeks prior, I walked the neighborhood passing out flyers and talking to those that would listen. The college student and I returned to the movie with no one following us.
But, then to my surprise one of the boys from the altar came in and sat beside me in the back row. Sheri already had an elderly neighbor lady sitting next to her helping her to understand what the movie was about and where it was leading to, the Salvation Story. The movie was: "Poema de Salvacion". It was about how rock music turned a young person into a satanic believer and then later in the movie he became a new Christian. The movie ended and the elderly lady thanked Sheri over and over again for the Bible that she was given. She held it close to her heart and shared how happy she is to be able to read the Bible in her home, especially her favorite book: Psalms.
A few years ago we had an inner city kitchen mission in the area of the "Niños de la Calle" (Children of the Street). Their leader told me, "You Christians are different than all the other churches who come to help us". He said, "all the others roll down their car windows and literally threw out food and clothes to us. But you Christians get out of your car and are not afraid of us, you actually care for us, you hug us, you feed us, you give us clothes without judging our outer appearances". One of those Niños de la Calle boys was Jose, who is now our preacher at the Ontañon Church of Christ. His dream is to help feed the poor, clothe the needy, visit the sick and study the Word with those in prison. Sounds Biblical doesn't it? Matthew 25:35-40
In the coming months you will hear more about the ministry opportunities we have been given by moving back into the inner city.
A. There will be a Food Pantry - Matthew 4:4 opening soon (January 2019) at the church. There are stores already telling us that food will be given at no cost to supply the pantry.
B. The boy who came to the movie asked for a pair of tennis shoes. We will re-open the church to provide clothing and shoes to those that truly have needs such as these. Our famous neighborhood bazaar. We have an abundance of clothes and on December 29, this opportunity will be available along with Christian music playing, Movies for the children, and devotions throughout the day.
C. Begining in January 2019, we will open up once again our ministry doors to visitors to have a first hand experience of the mission field. What is needed: willing workers who are not afraid of getting their hands dirty and show love for people that call the Barrio de San Miguelito home. Inner City opportunities include: VBS, Painting, Building, Roof Repairs, Cleaning, Help Feed the Poor through the Food Pantry and much more.
Pray about it! Then get excited to come join us as a church group, family or even an internship.
"Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field." Matthew 9:35-38 I want to highlight just one word from these verses: "COMPASSION". Jesus showed compassion to those in need. This is our mission, to show compassion to the needy, "LIVING IN THE INNER CITY".
Will you pray for us? Will you support us? Thanksgiving is coming soon and giving Tuesday soon after. Help us impact the inner city! We need Churches, Sunday Schools, Families, Men, Women and Children willing to give to the needs of others living in the inner city.
Christ Centered Ministries, Helping Others by Showing the Compassion of Jesus Christ to Those Living in the Inner City of San Luis Potosi, Mexico.
Emanuel Mexico Mission
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Iglesia Cristiana Ontañon