MARCH 2019 - THREE IN ONE
Since I last wrote, we have been extremely busy restoring, rebuilding and remodeling the ministry facility of Emanuel Mexico Mission. In order to make it functional for the church and other ministries, many things needed to be replaced or restored. To date, all the plumbing is in order, except for one water heater which needs to be replaced. All electrical damages are repaired except for 2 areas to which I still can not figure out. Doors were repaired and locks replaced in various areas. Other areas still in need of repairs are nearly all the kitchen cupboards, a lot of painting in nearly every area of the facility and some mason work.
The church is growing, thanks to the new Sunday School rooms now available. No more adult S.S. class in the worship area. They have their own Sunday School Room and that class has grown from 4 to 15. The teens are loving their own Sunday School room apart from the adults as well as the new children's room.
The two rooms set aside for the food pantry are now up and running. Shelving and tables were cut and placed in this new ministry outreach area (Matthew 4:4).
Another room has been established as "Jesus Carpenter Shop". It`s just a simple but usefull area for needed repairs.
The five boys who call Emanuel Mexico Mission home, Pablo, Joni, Lupe, Cristian and William are taking on more responsibilities of different ministry areas. Setting up and tearing down for Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday church activities in the mission are now a regular part of their routine. It gives them the satisfaction of seeing the ministry facility full of people and opportunities of service.
Each Monday, from 10 a.m. to noon, and 7 p.m. - 9 p.m., we have a Bible College level course (Reading Club) offered to all the churches in San Luis Potosi. Response has, again, been overwhelming and the conversation time is great. The first book they are using is "Crazy Love" by Francis Chan. Attendance averages 20 for both classes.
Jose has set aside Tuesday evenings from 9:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m., for home devotions for the 5 boys. Breaking old habits can be hard at times, but Jose is getting the boys to open up their Bibles and learning how to pray once again. Twelve books of the Bible in twelve months is the family challange for 2019.
Our Wednesdays are busy with opportunities for the Food Pantry and a Drug/Alcohol Rehabilitation Center we were asked to participate in. Jose and I both share the gospel every other Wednesday at the Center with the other Wednesday we receive, clean, pack and distribute the food in the Matthew 4:4 ministry. We call it our "Miercoles de Milagros" - "Wednesday Miracles". The 40 men at the rehab center love to sing and eagerly and earnestly study God's Word. The center is only 5 minutes from Emanuel Mexico Mission, so it works well with our schedule.
We converted the former children's Sunday School class into a new office for Jose. It is located in the back patio of the church. This gives him his own personal area to study and easy access to the ministry facility and the boys in the home.
As I stated in the title this is 3 letters in one. December, 2018, January 2019, and February 2019. We hope as you continue to read you will find some blessings today for your life.
We held our annual Bazaar for the Inner City Neighborhood of Ontañon on February 8 and 9 with a ribbon cutting ceremony and words by Jose to our neighbors, "We are here for you". On February 15 we held our first ever "Valentines - Marriage Banquet". Eighteen couples enjoyed an evening of inspiring Christian music, games, message on marriage and a delicious meal. All under the ministry leadership of the Ontañon Church of Christ and E.M.M. Jose did an outstanding job of organizing this new ministry outreach. As the evening was ending everyone was in agreement that we need to do this again. So much more has taken place in the last three months, but this is just a small preview on the ministry opportunities E.M.M. is doing with the support they have been blessed with.
Still needed to be repaired (in the shop since November, 2018) are the damages to the car. The transmission is now out of the car and the van needs its regular service, oil change and electrical damages repaired. Having a horn, is essential for driving in Mexico! The van has already taken several long trips to Guadalajara, Zacatecas and other area church activities. We traveled to Piedras Negras on March 1 - 4, to the Christian Convention and returned with the remainder of our household items that were stored at a local church in Piedras Negras.
As the church is growing, plans are to move the sanctuary to the large open patio in the near future. We will use the current church worship area for youth activities. They have youth meetings each Saturday from 5 - 7 p.m. I'm not much of a dry wall person, so anyone .with this talent is welcome to come help "build a church wall".
Other ministry needs are the educational and physical needs of the 5 boys. Two of them are working, one part time the other full time, that helps a little, but more is needed in this area. David had 2 emergency room visits, (November and December), which has caused extra medical bills left unpaid.
We received a visit from Family Services and the Health Department for their annual inspection in January. We requested at least 6 months to a year to allow us time to get the facility in working order. All the emergency lights, fire alarms and gas alarms are not functioning. The underground water tanks as well as the 3 large water tanks on the roof all need cleaned and filters changed. A major overhaul of all emergency fixtures needs to be updated and repaired. This takes money and time, I told the officials to which they agreed.
Other areas needing attention are the Internet and phone line. It will take time and extra funds to get the Internet hooked up. The line was disconnected and unpaid bills such as telephone and water were left for us to pay and have caused unnecessary costs to reconnect. The TV antenna has fallen and is damaged beyond normal repair. It's interesting as we get only one channel with a box antenna connected directly to the TV. The one channel is all "Turkish" shows from 3:00 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. and the Mexican national news at 10:30 p.m. Definitely a Multi Cultural experience!
Contact us on how you can get involved in the ministry opportunities of Emanuel Mexico Mission. More prayers and finances are needed, but we would also like to see visitors come to work hand in hand with us. Two summer groups are already on the calendar.
God bless those that support and pray for the ministry opportunities we have been given. In another letter I need to share about a "real Christmas Miracle", as two lost brothers found each other through Emanuel Mexico Mission at Christmas time 2018. Together we are making a difference in the Inner City Ministry needs of Emanuel Mexico Mission. It's a challenge, but we are reminded daily, "We live by faith not by sight".
In closing, we want to thank everyone who believes in the ministry work we are involved in "Emanuel Mexico Mission - God with us". Every goal and every ministry opportunity set by Jose and the ministry team of Emanuel Mexico Mission, has been received with open arms by the neighborhood of the Ontañon Church of Christ and especially the San Luis Potosi Churches of Christ.
We did it 3 letters in 1. A lot of information was shared, but just like when 3 in 1 oil is used things work better afterwards. We ask that you pray and give as the Lord directs your hearts.
David & Sheri DeBolt