From CHM Director David Byrne -
Where did the fall go? Here in South Texas it seems like we have been more than a little distracted by all of the movement and challenges after Hurricane Harvey, and the time has flown quickly. Many plans have changed as we came together as communities to help those who have been so deeply affected. Joyce and I were personally thankful that our home did not flood and have taken that blessing as an opportunity to help so many others who are struggling.
So much of the challenge is the waiting. People have been waiting – for it to stop raining; for the waters to recede; for help to clear out the house; for the walls to dry; for adjusters, inspectors, and contractors; for checks from FEMA, insurance or others; for materials; and on and on. With time, things are coming together, but it is hard to wait.
We know that this is true in so many areas in life. God is at work, but He is certainly not done yet. Jesus has come, but the world is not restored or remade yet. God’s love has entered the world, but even His people do not reflect that love and glory in its fullness. We long for His coming again to establish justice and peace, and in the meantime we wait.
In Hispanic Ministries in the United States I am discouraged at how people’s lives become a political football and how God’s people are swayed by nationalistic and hedonistic agendas instead of Kingdom values in so many areas. And so we all wait – and do our part no matter how the currents of politics and culture may move in force against the coming and working out of God’s salvation. We wait and we work in faithfulness and hope that God will “deliver us from evil” to do what is good and right.
During this Christmastime look beyond the struggles, the budget shortfalls, the brokenness and injustice to see the glory of what is to come in our Lord. Invest yourself in Him and His work in all that you do, for we know that His day is coming. For His is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever, Amen.
Dr. David C. Byrne
(--See the previous newsletter--)
(For an easier to print & share "Acrobat Reader" Version of this Newsletter click HERE)
Dr. Karl Newman
Dora Gutierrez Kerr
Dr. Richard Tomm
Speaking of Budget Shortfalls....
Yes, it is that time again, and this year is just the beginning of some difficult budget work for CHM. Because of internal cutbacks in some of our supporting organizations, CHM has been underfunded this year and faces some even more severe funding issues for 2018. We provide a service for those involved in Hispanic Ministries across the continent and are pleased to do so mostly without charge to the organizations and churches we serve, but that does not mean that there is no cost involved. If you believe like we do that providing a ministry that links churches and resources together so that the body of Christ can be one even as it expands in ministry, now is the time to join us in ongoing giving and prayer.
Walking with God
In early November a gifted and committed minister of the Gospel went to be with his Lord. Mauricio Hernández has been serving as a long-time church-planter, evangelist, and pastor in Central America (25 years) who moved to the United States and for the last 6 years in Worchester, Massachusetts to raise up a new church. In spite of a lengthy illness the work goes on and Mauricio’s son (Miguel), daughter-in-law (Edith), and widow (Elva) are diligently working to continue the work. Please pray with them as they go forward inspired by the life and witness of Mauricio. Also, pray for God’s comfort and special support for them as they move forward without this man of God.
Catalyst Conversation on Hispanic Ministry
As part of an ongoing effort by MCM (Multiplication Catalyst Ministries) to foment the multiplication of churches in North America, a special conversation was held in Phoenix and simultaneously online. In order to highlight how God is working among the Hispanic Friends groups whose leadership was gathering for the North American Hispanic Friends Conference, some of the leaders including Amílcar Sosa (Bell, California), Omar Castillo (Chicago), Carlos and Katy Moran (Indianapolis), Sergio Ayala (Coahuila, Mexico), Jorge Valdez (Phoenix), and Adianis and Juan-Pablo Alvarado (Bacliff, Texas) shared some good insights. They shared briefly about the variety of ways that those groups began and how they have added new ministries to their fellowships. Many had their beginnings in Anglo church facilities as the English-speaking congregations sought ways to impact their transitioning communities or simply wanted to reach beyond their cultural boundaries. Some were deliberate new church-plants by immigrant pastors who were led of God to call people to Christ and to His church. In all cases the emphasis was on the importance of cooperation in ministry between cultures so that Hispanic ministries will be established and Anglo churches rejuvenated. CHM’s emphasis on Hispanic ministry may be our calling, but the blessing is for the Kingdom of God.
Once again our annual conference sponsored in conjunction with the AMANA ministerial association served to inspire and direct the growth of Hispanic ministries in North America. This becomes all the more critical as the number of churches increases and the relationships are more intertwined for support and oversight across the continent. Our thanks go to Pastor Jorge Valdez, the church planting pastor of the Phoenix congregation. In spite of a stroke that still confines him to a wheelchair, Pastor Valdez was able to help host the conference along with his family and church members.
And even bigger things are in store next year as the AMANA conference is combined with the Latin American Friends Pastors’ Conference the 4th-7th of October, 2018 at the Willoughby Hills Friends Church in Northeastern Ohio! Make your plans to attend now.
|Pray for those who are struggling to find their place in the world. Hear the voices of Christian “Dreamers” at: www.ChristianDreamers.us It is worth a listen.
|Pray the Byrne family. You can see their annual family update here.
for the multiplication of ministries and for those who are called to lead
Jesus’ church forward. Pray for the identification and encouragement of those
catalytic people who will plant the churches of the future – in all cultures