Hello Dear Friends and Family,
How are you doing? Do you go through seasons of ups and downs in your life? We do, too! The past few months have been filled with them – blessings, disappointments, frustration, and sorrow. The only thing that keeps us going is knowing that we are serving a God who is alive, sovereign, and faithful to His promises!
One of the good things is that the political situation in Honduras has calmed down and life is pretty much back to normal. However, with the biggest gang leaders in a new prison now, the others are fighting to see who will be the next leaders. Many people are being killed, so please keep this in your prayers.
We had planned to begin the new Bible School in La Mosquitia in February, but the potential students hadn’t been given the correct information so they backed out at the last minute. Chico’s brother, Ramiro, went ahead and stayed there to have more time to talk to pastors, parents, and potential students and now we have a new begin date of May 21, 2018. It has been wonderful having Dunia back on staff with us after she returned from Ecuador last year. She has been here since January, but in May she will be going to help Ramiro in La Mosquitia. Please pray for wisdom for them and that God will bring those students whom He would have to study and train there.
We had quite a disappointing few weeks here at our own Bible School this past term as we lost two staff and four of our nine students. Only one student left for a good reason and that was to take care of his mother who was diagnosed with cancer. The other five were expelled for moral reasons. We would so greatly appreciate your prayers for this, that God would give us wisdom to teach, discipline and set rules that would help to strengthen convictions; that God would help us to lead by example; and that the enemy’s power would be weakened. From the interviews that Chico did at the end of Boot Camp, there were several team members who said they would be coming as students in the May term. Please pray that their desire would remain strong and that the details would come together if it is God’s will for them to come.
For several years, our students have had the tremendous privilege of teaching a class on values to the public high school students in San Isidro. They have been able to work Bible verses into the teachings and have had an excellent response. The school administration has said that they have fewer problems with the students since they have been receiving these classes. Praise the Lord! This year, we continue and our son, Samuel, is joining with some volunteers from the church to teach the kids in the elementary school. They use puppets and dramas among other creative ways to present the lessons. We would appreciate your prayers for this ministry to the community that Samuel and the students would always teach the lessons well, and that they would maintain their Christian testimony; and for the kids to pay attention, understand, and want to apply these principles to their lives.
In the family….
…..Daniel is almost finished with his first year as a college student. For not being as prepared as he probably should have been, he really put forth a strong effort to do his best in his classes. He enjoyed his on-campus job, weekend ministry with kids, and fun times with new friends. He would appreciate your continued prayers for him as he begins his second year in August.
….Samuel has returned to homeschooling which has given him more time to help out around the house and also to be more involved with the church. He and some youth from church started a group who put together dramas and then go places to do evangelism. So far they have gone to Intibucá and to an orphanage in Peña Blanca.
….Abi continues homeschooling and is in third-grade. She is doing quite well in her bilingual studies, but she would rather play dolls or dress-up! She had a very fun ninth birthday party with some friends who came for a sleepover! Abi is also spending more time helping out by taking care of Joel. Now that he is two-and-a-half, he is quite a handful – but he’s also finally old enough to be a fun playtime companion – when he’s not being terrible!
….and Joel – well, how do you describe a toddler? Adorable, smart, funny, amazing, sweet – and sometimes, a real brat! But we’re working on that!
Unfortunately, tragedy hit the family in February when Kathy’s niece passed away. Kathy’s niece, who was only four months older than her – they grew up together and were best friends – had a medical emergency and didn’t make it through. It was so unexpected, it was hard to believe it to be true. It makes you think about how fleeting this life really is. It feels like we’ll be living here forever – and then, in a second, you’re gone. While it is tragic for those you leave behind, we know that truly, there is no better place to be than with the Father who loves us all so very much!
Finally, we would appreciate your prayers for this summer. Abi is excited for her last year as a Peanut. She will work making trusses and be doing many other fun projects for the week before the teen teams begin on June 16th. The rallies will be broadcast live daily from June 16 – 30 on the website www.teenmissions.org if you would like to see one (the Peanut Commissioning service on the 16th and the Teen Commissioning service on the 30th) Then all the teams will be traveling on July 1st. As you may already know, Samuel is planning to go on a Teen Missions team to Fiji. Their work project will be the construction of a dormitory for a youth camp and on the weekends they will do evangelism. Daniel is looking forward to being an assistant leader with Chico and me on the team to Honduras! We will return to La Mosquitia this year to continue helping the new Bible School with necessary repairs and also to accompany the MSSM Circuit Riders as they do the evangelism each day in one of six different villages. After two weeks, we will return to our base where the team will continue the paving of our driveway that was started last year by a preteen team. Please pray for safe travels, good health, for God to work in the hearts of team members, for many to hear and receive the Gospel, and for the leaders to get along with each other well!
We are so very thankful to everyone who gives financially to our family and the ministry here. Through you, God has provided over and above for our every need. However, if anyone would like to contribute specifically towards Daniel or Samuel’s trips, they would be very grateful. Just note their name when you fill out the coupon on this newsletter. We pray that each one of you, whether you support us financially or in prayer, would be blessed and that God would help you through any difficulty that you may be going through right now. May God receive the glory for all He has done!
In the love of Jesus,
Francisco, Kathy, Daniel, Samuel, Abi, and Joel Chicas