Past Short Term Missions:
YMT Texas: Rio Grande City (July 28-August 5)
Texas Team Members: Monica An, Renee Tam, ShuLin Zhao, Wing Yan Lau, and Helen Hui
“We’re headed to Texas with the Foundation Team. This Team consists of 1st-2nd year mission-ministry members. One of our goals is to learn about the heart of God for missions through serving the people we meet. We will be conducting a VBS program at Primera Iglesia Bautista in Rio Grande City. Pastor Osdy and Maria Luna have been our ministry partners since 2006. They are also the directors of Casa Hogar Orphanage in Camargo, Mexico, where YMT had served in 2006-2007.
Please pray for the Team. We need:
-Guidance and wisdom from the Holy Spirit in all that we do
-Courage and discernment especially in sharing the Gospel
-Openness to learning what the Lord will be teaching us
-Protection and safety at the site and while we travel
-Love and kindness shown to all who cross our path
-Relief from the scorching Texas heat 100+ degree weather in July
Reflections on Texas YMT By: Helen Hui
What can only five people do on a missions trip? The answer is “not a whole lot” if the only resource they have is their own ingenuity; but when God leads the way, exciting and impossible things happen. The church in Rio Grande City responded to the need to help in their VBS program in a huge way. The result was truly a blessing from the Lord.
In the past several years, outside groups and churches have avoided the border towns because of the drug violence along the border of Texas and Mexico. It’s been ten years since Primera Iglesia Bautista had a VBS. Our team did hear about the presence and the reality of the suffering caused by the drug cartels, but the Lord protected us from all harm.
The size of this congregation numbered no more than 50 people on a Sunday with less than 25 children and teens, but the church invited their friends, relatives, and neighbors to the VBS. A car and a van were sent around the neighborhood in multiple rounds to pick up children. Each day, we had a consistent attendance of approximately 75 children. Teens were encouraged to come and help, even those who did not come regularly to church, while the adults of the church took care of the lunches for the children as a ministry. Our daily program consisted of 75-80 children, 12-15 teen helpers, and 5-8 adult helpers.
Excitement increased daily as we all observed and marveled at what God was doing at this church. Truly, “everything is possible with God.” The “light” of the Gospel and the church are shining even brighter. May the name of the Lord be praised!”
YMT Alaska (June 28-July 15)
Alaska Missions Update
“As you may know, I’m currently in Anchorage, Alaska with a team of 3 other adults. We settled in over 48hrs ago and have quickly started working with the Boys and Girls club of Mountain View in Anchorage.
We had met around 30-40 kids. There will be another 35-45 today that we haven’t met yet. The Boys and Girls Club in Mountain View is a great facility but there are only a few adult full-time workers there. Additionally, it has a reputation for having the most undisciplined kids. The workers and volunteers really need physical support as well as more funding to better serve kids that come from all over the city. Our presence provided them with much needed relief even though it’s just three of us here until Jonathan arrives tomorrow. We are very limited with what we can do but the little we have done already has had some effect. We will spend another 2 days here and then we will then drive 4-6hrs into Glenallen.
The workers there are very visibly frustrated and overwhelmed. There seems to be a lack joy in their work and especially in their interactions with the kids. The younger kids have expressed their fear of older kids. Fights do break out and little kids learn very quickly that they must act a certain way to survive. The environment here is very volatile. The younger kids have quickly latched onto us. Several kids have expressed how much they’re hoping that we’d stay there for a long time. 2 little sisters, Gina and Johanna gave me the biggest and longest hugs when they had to go home. My heart is definitely going for a roller coaster ride.
Pray that we can make a deep impact upon the many kids here at the Boys and Girls Club and leave a lasting impression with this very broken community. We’re truly learning on the go and adapting what we need to do programmatically very quickly. We had a tentative program coming in but after our first day interactions we realize that we have to try a different approach.
• Pray for our creatively and ability to provide helpful programs and activities.
• Pray that God would also protect us and the kids that we work with.
Pray that the word of God and the gospel would penetrate their hearts and captivate their young minds. They have clearly been evangelized to and dare I even say over-evangelized to but we still strive to keep sharing this matter of first importance (1 Cor 15:3) so that there would be none that would say I never heard or knew. We trust that the word of God will do its work in time.
• Pray that the gospel would be displayed through our team as we labor together.
• Pray that we would continue to be sensitive to the work of the spirit and humbly serve every person that God brings our way.
Pray that we would also have help and support when we arrive at the Copper Center in Glenallen. Similar to our experience so far in Anchorage we don’t know yet what to expect.
Lastly, pray for our energy and strength. We’re still adjusting to the time difference. When we’re ready to call it a day, it’s 2-3am EST.
Thanks for listening, praying and partnering with me in the work of the gospel.
I am still in need of financial support for this trip so if you’d like to support me financially please let me know or write a check to Chinese Christian Church & Center with a note indicating support for me and Alaska STM.”
I’ll keep you updated.
Grace and Peace,
LT (Laurence Tom)