“This is My command – be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged.
For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
It’s been an eventful few months since our last Newsletter. We welcomed a number of teams from various churches, who joined with us in outreach to both local and surrounding communities, sharing the good news of the gospel and assisting in practical projects. Many children & youth passed through our Centre, and we thank God for every opportunity He gave us to share the gospel and be a blessing. As the Lord encouraged Joshua in the Old Testament, let’s be encouraged ourselves in the knowledge that in whatever He calls us to do or to walk through, we need never live in fear or give in to discouragement – for He has promised to be with us always.
She was a very special lady
Many of you know that my mother was a very special lady. She raised ten children and each one of us rise up and call her blessed. She supported the ministry from the very beginning, as a faithful sponsor, and a constant source of encouragement. In 2008, it was a wonderful blessing to welcome my mother to the Centre, along with my sister Danielle, and my brother Alan and his wife Linda. Mom loved visiting with the children and was finally able to see for herself some of the work she was a part of with both her financial and prayer support. Over the last few years, my mother’s health deteriorated. She suffered with Parkinson’s and recurring cancer. Her challenges in her old age opened my eyes to the needs of the elderly, which caused an extension of our outreach here to seniors in the local senior homes. I thank God that I was able to be home in May when my mother finally went home to be with Jesus. Praise God that she was able to have all of her children with her and that He gave us time to visit and pray with her. To have a good and godly mother was such a gift to me, and to know that she is now with Jesus brings such peace. When we know the Lord, we do not have to fear death. We can know that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. Thank you to each one of you who were praying for my mother and our family during this time. Thank you to all who gave a donation in my mother’s memory.
New Ventures in La Vigilia
We never know when God will open a new door. It was a surprise to hear from a long time supporter in early January with news that Centre Evangelique de Rouyn Noranda in Abitibi, Quebec wanted to pledge support for a one year pilot project for us to start a new outreach centre in the countryside surrounding Puerto Plata. One aspect of Luz a Las Naciones’ mandate is to assist individuals and churches, both locally and internationally, with opportunities to participate in outreach on the mission field, including evangelism and discipleship, as well as with practical projects to better the lives of the poor. So we were happy to assist this church in the search for a building that will be used as an outreach centre to offer literacy programs and serve as a place where the youth can have games, sports, and Bible teaching. It would be a refuge for the children/youth – similar to how we started in Puerto Plata. Praise God that He led us to an ideal spot – in the small village of La Vigilia, which is about 15 km from Puerto Plata. The community is largely agricultural and the people are in much need. We were able to find an old, abandoned bar to rent, and we are now in the process of fixing it up and establishing children/youth programs. All I can say is that God opened a door, and it was opened suddenly and in a wonderful way! We look forward to working with Centre Evangelique de Rouyn Noranda as they send teams and pour into the lives of the people here. Our DR team is already making trips to La Vigilia and there are about 80 children/youth that are coming by. We will include La Vigilia in our summer VBS plans. Please let me know if you would like to help support this project in assisting with the cost of transportation and supplies.
In April, shortly after the rental of this building, which was in need of quite a bit of fixing up, Board member, Don Anness, and Pastor Dave Tarasko from Walkerton Pentecostal Church brought a team of enthusiastic young people. It was such perfect timing! The team was a marvelous help in cleaning and painting the building, both inside & outside.
Local children are very excited about us being there and so many came around to lend a helping hand. In between cleaning and painting, the Walkerton team participated in outreach, taught Bible stories, hosted games and crafts for the children/youth, and blessed the local community by using leftover paint on other buildings that were in need of a touch up and by picking up garbage in the area.
Continuing our outreach to seniors, the Walkerton team made visits with us to the local senior’s home. They showed love and care to the seniors by preparing them a me
al and doing
some of their personal laundry. As you can see, Board member Don Anness (photo below) is busy at work in the wash basin. The seniors were happy to have visitors, as many are lonely with little to do, and were also very happy and grateful to receive gifts of new linens, towels and pajamas.
For some of the youth who were part of the Walkerton team, it was a first time mission trip. Writing in the guest book that we keep for visitors, it was exciting to read some of their comments that included hopes and dreams that God would continue to use them in missions’ outreach in the future.
“This trip truly opened up both my eyes and heart to what God has in store with every single person’s life, no matter the background.” Courtney Alexandra
“Thank you for the amazing week it has changed me and inspired me to be a stronger follower of Christ.” Jonathan Hagan
We continue outreach to seniors throughout the year by making a nutritious meal each month, delivering small care packages that include things like shampoo, soap and creams, etc., giving haircuts and manicures, as well as sharing the good news of the gospel and praying with them. Please pray that God will give us continued open doors & new ideas on how to bless & minister to the seniors. The cost of running our current outreach is approx. $150/month. If you would like to give specifically to this program, please let me know.
Metro West Church from Boston has been sending teams to help us for a number of years and the children look forward to their visits. This year they brought along another youth team from Alabama. Most of the Alabama team were college students on their first mission outreach during their college reading week. We took them to the Haitian village in Munoz.
The children enjoyed the drama, songs and social interaction with the young people. We are grateful that these young people chose to spend their spring break blessing and bringing joy to others. During the summer months, we will include this village when we do our Vacation Bible School outreach. Please pray for the people in the village. Most of the men work long hours in the sugar cane fields and life is not easy.
Special thanks & praise
Thank you for your prayers for Roberto, who was not feeling well for some time. After getting some much needed rest and with some good vitamins, I am happy to report that he is doing much better.
Thank you to Lindsay Mitchell who worked with us from Sept – April, assisting the teachers at our school and providing English classes for interested youth and adults. We bless Lindsay in her continuing mission endeavours.
Thank you to Daniel Caza, who volunteered his time and talent to update our web site.
Thank you to each one of you who gave towards the construction of a second floor over our activity area. Praise God that the small apartment and mission team accommodation over the Centre’s activity area is almost completed. We still have some painting to do and bunk beds to purchase, etc., but it’s almost ready. It’s going to be great to have teams on the premises and it will save us a great deal in gasoline costs in transporting them back and forth from the resorts.
Special Prayer Requests
For Elvis – a young handicapped student at our school, who since birth has been unable to walk. He is much loved at the Centre. Elvis recently had his legs operated on at the children’s hospital in Santiago. The operation was successful, but Elvis is in a lot of pain and is very weak at the moment. Please pray for Elvis and his family as he recovers and needs extra care. Thanks to support from a Toronto area individual as well as assistance from Walkerton Pentecostal, we’re able to help the family with medical costs, transportation to the hospital and appointments, as well as supply milk to help strengthen Elvis’ bones.
For Yanerli – Tony’s little daughter suffers with chronic ear infections that cause her a lot of pain. The doctors do not seem to know the cause of all these infections. Please pray for complete healing for Yanerli and for encouragement for Tony & his wife, Rosary.
For Vacation Bible School – We are expecting three teams (Malvern Christian Assembly, West Metro, and Calvary Chapel) to join us this summer months to help with VBS. Please pray that God will bless all our efforts to bless the children and families, and that team members will also be blessed. There is much to co-ordinate when preparing VBS for hundreds of children in the hot weather.
Update on India
We’ve worked with Pastor Silas with Gospel for India for the past 8 yrs. Pastor Silas lives in the small village of Seethampet. Along with his wife, Pastor Silas adopted 6 orphan children (photo above). Pastor Silas overseas a number of pastors who minister in remote tribal villages, some of which I had the privilege to visit during my last mission trip to India in 2010. The people are eager to hear about the Lord. These photos were sent to me by Pastor Christer, also with Gospel for India, who visited Pastor Silas on March 5th. What a blessing for these orphans to now have a good home, yet there are many more orphans and the situation is very sad. Luz a Las Naciones gives a small amount of support to Pastor Silas in his ministry and we ask you to pray with us for God’s leading and direction in assisting him further. Lord willing, I will visit again in January 2014.
Please remember us in the Autumn
I hope to meet with as many of you as I can at one of our annual fundraising banquets. (The Good Neighbour’s
Club, Belle River – Saturday, Oct 19/13; St Andrews Presbyterian Church, Etobicoke – Saturday, Nov 2/13)
These are great opportunities for me to update you on the ministry and connect with you personally.
From all of us on the DR Team, thank you for your prayers & support.
“ Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Col 3:15-17
Canadian Mailing Address Field Address
Luz a Las Naciones Ministries Mr. Richard Brochu
P.O. Box 225 Ministerio Luz a Las Naciones
Essex, ON N8M 2Y3 C.P. #516, Puerto Plata, Republica Dominicana
Phone: 1-519-776-9926 Phone/Fax: Phone: 1-809-586-4041