Greetings from CHM Director David Byrne!
Thinking about Summer Ministries:
Most churches at this time of year are already moving toward their summer missionary experiences where they can involve their youth and adults. As one who has been on the receiving end of such mission trips I can say that often they are more about discipleship, enrichment, and maybe even entertainment for those who are looking for something interesting to do for their summer rather than for actual advancement of God’s kingdom around the world. Of course, at least discipleship and enrichment are themselves part of the advancement of God’s kingdom that we seek for those who go. My point is that if we really care about God’s call to the world, we must understand that we are sent not just to enrich ourselves or our own children but to go beyond ourselves and to invest in others in ways that enrich and disciple them rather than ourselves. How is that done? One thing is to forego the glitzy and exotic in favor of the more mundane cross-cultural work at our doorstep. Spanish-speaking churches from nearby cities in your own denomination would love to partner with your church in ministry. Maybe a team from your church could lead your own VBS program at another church (usually English is fine with the children) either before or after your own program. Possibly, out of that same relationship, a team from that Spanish-speaking church could then come lead a Hispanic ministry outreach event out of your own facilities to broaden your own ministry. Many churches around the country are forming partnerships with their sister churches from other cultures. Unlike a missionary tour that can drop in occasionally on the “mission field,” when you are engaging with the mission field that is nearby it will more deeply challenge your prejudices and engage each participant in a truly missionary pouring out of yourself in Jesus’ name. You will be forced to exercise skill in coordinating with the host group to meet the needs that they perceive and to navigate the differences between you. The ministry impact will be greater and the financial investment maximized.
Please understand, international missions is a key part of our calling in Christ, but be sure not to overlook the nitty gritty work and opportunities in Jerusalem and Samaria.
David C. Byrne
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Dr. Karl Newman
Dora Gutierrez Kerr
Dr. Richard Tomm
What We're Trying to Say is....
One of the spiritual gifts that was important to the early church is the gift of tongues. Without getting into controversial theological analysis, it is obvious from Acts 2 that God was doing something that was significant in bringing people together in Christ’s life from all languages and cultures and that it was important to Him that all people everywhere should hear the good news. One of the challenges we have in doing cross-cultural ministry in the U.S. is simply to understand each other as we work together to build one another up. A key part of that task involves recognizing the value to the Kingdom of God of those who are gifted in language and recruiting them to the task of communication. Right now we are forming teams of interpreters/translators from across the continent for working with both documents and events to facilitate understanding and cooperation in accomplishing God’s tasks together. If you are among those that God has gifted in language – particularly looking at Spanish and English for the time being – then contact CHM director David Byrne to find how you can get involved. We need your help.
CHM Road Trips
To me one of the fun things about leading CHM’s ministry is traveling with and visiting good friends who love the Lord. On this trip in April I woke up long enough to grab this “selfie” with the Sergio Ayala family on our way to Philadelphia. What fellowship and inspiration!
As we approach our 20th North American Hispanic Friends Conference this October, we look forward to bringing together the Spanish-speaking Friends from across the continent at the landing point for Friends in America. It is appropriate that this conference will be held in Philadelphia (as was the 10th) and that its theme is God’s Lordship. Plan on joining us from Oct. 13-16th. Register through CHM or by contacting José Salguero (Jose8619@hotmail.com or 267-980-7240).
Mexico: A Maturing Church
With three Mexico Yearly Meetings of Friends there is a lot going on across Mexico. The Yearly Meeting that is a result of EFM’s mission in Mexico City met recently in Juarez – across from El Paso – and there was much to celebrate. Beyond the new church ministries and the inclusion of new churches in the Yearly Meeting, it was inspiring to hear the stories of how the churches are working to care for the people in their communities through meals for children, care for single mothers, classes for families and the extension of the training institute for leaders across the nation.
It has been 22 years since our family lived and worked in church-planting in Mexico, and yet, we are still connected with so many who continue to work there. In spite of many setbacks and challenges, failures and “learning experiences” the church in Mexico continues to mature and to hold fast to the power of Christ as He works through them for salvation. It is not about just having a group of people gathered together called the church, it is about God’s power being released through His people. Thanks be to God!
|Please be praying for and planning to attend the Multiplication Conference
from Aug. 3-5. Now is the time to register. See details at:
friendsmultiply.com. Bob Logan (right) will be our main speaker.
|We are praying for David Jaimes,
a CHM board member, who resigned from his youth ministry position at Friendswood
Friends Church recently and will be moving with his wife Claudia to California.
We thank God for his giftedness and passion for Hispanic Ministry.
|In 2018 Hispanic Friends in North America are considering hosting a pastor’s conference
for Evangelical Friends across Latin America. We are praying and looking
for partners and ideas for hosting this significant event. We need
a location that can accommodate the international travel as well as host
hundreds of pastors and spouses. Help us in our prayer preparations
and if you have ideas about location or anything else you want to share,
please give me a call and we can talk.