As we finish up 2019, we give thanks for the coming of our Lord that has made possible our salvation and our service. This year has been a full one. Here are some of our highlights.
• Dios Altísimo, a theology book that will help ministers and others in their understanding of God and His plans, is in people’s hands.
• Translation of The College Press Romans Commentary is in progress. This is a work requested by missionaries that will help them in the planting of churches and in leadership development.
• Preguntas Teológicas is helping across the Spanish speaking world, it gets about 300 views per month. continuing to progress, small size but getting results, seeing growth.
• Christian Restoration Bible Seminary is working to develop new leaders and strengthen existing leaders. So far, we have taught: Discipleship, Bible study methodology, basic doctrine, Restoration Movement history, preaching, Spanish grammar, finances, and more. Mike tries to write and teach at least one new course per year – this year will be the book of Acts.
• Continuing to progress. It’s a small size but getting results and is seeing growth and new interest.
• We’re finishing the year with about 15 students in two groups.
• We will be accepting new students in March 2020. The format is 6 hours of study, two Saturdays per month for three months. We do three trimesters per year.
There have been shorter teaching events on evangelism, leadership, doctrine, and mental health. We traveled south, to the coastal town of Calbuco for one of them. The Mental Health seminar was approached from three points of view– psychological, Biblical, and ministerial. Mike addressed the Biblical perspective on mental health.
NATIONAL MINISTERS RETREAT
Mike participated in the organization, planning and teaching. The event lasted three days, and was filled with fellowship, discussions, and messages.
Iglesia de Cristo Maipo has had 14 baptisms in 2 years, and its average attendance is around 25 each week, finishing this year. We’ve been meeting in a restaurant, which is a set-up the members enjoy. Mike is one of the elders (along with Jaime Escobar), and Tabi participates in the music group.
FAMILY TRIPS AND SUCH
In July, Mike took a trip to the US, to do some extra fund-raising. In November, Tabi went up to Ohio with the kids to attend the ICOM with Rose.
We also try to take time to do things as a family, because we believe that keeping our family strong and united is important to the healthy continuation of our mission.
SOME CHALLENGES FROM THE YEAR
• We continue to be grateful for those who sacrifice to contribute financially to our ministry. However, our account needs help. Our mission account has been sustaining a continued deficit. This is a source of stress for Mike.
• Our deficit this year came to $2549.49. If you would like a more specific breakdown of these numbers, feel free to email or message us, and we will send you the information.
• Getting $215 a month more would help make up for this deficit. Feel free to tell other churches and individuals about our mission if you think that they might be a good fit.
• Here are links to donate online and to learn more about us on our website and to follow us on Facebook
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC INSTABILITY
• Chile had massive protests regarding cost of living and asking for more benefits for retirement, healthcare, education, minimum wage, public transport, and the perception of heavy-handed police intervention in the protests among other things.
• The disorder interrupted travel and our ability to have classes for a few weeks, but things are a bit calmer now and we were able to finish out the year more or less on track.
• Chile will be creating a new Constitution and we are praying about that.
• The economy is expected to suffer due to the damage done in protests and looting.
• Christians, too, are quite divided on the underlying issues and what to do about them.
BALANCING WORK AND FAMILY
• It is always a challenge to see to the welfare of the family and all of the ministry obligations we have. Tabi feels this acutely as she tries to work on translation at home with the kids pleading for more attention.
• Pray that we will have wisdom in dealing with these challenges and continue to grow spiritually as a family
BALANCING CONTINUING WORK AND NEW OPPORTUNITIES
• This is a blessing that requires wisdom. Pray that we will be able to decide well.
• Mike’s ministries are progressing nicely, but as new doors open, we must decide where to invest our time, energy and resources. The need for solid Bible teaching is great and Mike has had more churches requesting classes, studies, preaching, and short seminars… all while the new church needs to continue to grow and find stability and develop new, Chilean leadership.
• In this area, prayers for more workers (national and/or missionaries) are appreciated — specifically qualified Bible and ministry teachers. One other ministry that Mike is doing that is not mentioned above is mentoring a newer missionary to help fulfill the work.