Dear Family and Friends,
On the evening of Sept. 17, Dan and I were at the 25th anniversary celebration of our Henry Prince school. The Emanuel Church which is on the campus of the school was decorated beautifully for the event. It is absolutely incredible what the Bolivians can do just by draping strips of cloth. Spotlights were placed in the center of the church, which were then covered with cloth to make it look like a chandelier. It was so pretty! The church was transformed for the evening!
There were many student choirs that presented music and even a choir made up of all of the teachers. One of the choirs was led by one of the music teachers, Eloy Ortega. It was beautiful as he accompanied the choir with his guitar. There is some real musical talent in this school! By the way, you may recognize that last name…Eloy is the brother of Lilibeth Ortega, who is on a two-year ministry aboard the Logos Hope ship. One really special part of the celebration was the recognition of four teachers who had been teaching at Henry Prince for all 25 years. One of these teachers, Rubiht Mendoza, teaches Bible classes to most of the elementary students and has a real gift for teaching children. It is so incredible to think that she started out as one of the orphans who was cared for by our early missionaries. She and her husband, Adalidare, are a great example of a couple committed to the Lord.
The next weekend, we were at the 43rd anniversary of one of our churches, Fuente de Vida (Fountain of Life Church). The church had put together a very nice program with lots of special music. Each of the Oansa (Awana) classes presented a special number and recited a verse by memory. There was also a puppet presentation which the kids (and adults) really enjoyed! After all the special numbers in the program were presented, they invited anyone else who wanted to share to do so at that time. Several more special numbers were presented by those in the congregation. They then went on to acknowledge each Sunday School teacher, worship team member, Oansa (Awana) club leader, and all those involved in the puppet ministry. It was really special for them to be recognized for their ministries within the church. It was really interesting to us that the majority of those being recognized were young people (in their early 20’s) and most of them were recognized for multiple ministries.
Many of you have been praying for Lilibeth Ortega who started her two-year ministry aboard Operation Mobilization’s “Logos Hope” back in January. She stated in a recent newsletter that over 100,000 people visited the ship while it was docked in India. What a privilege to share the love of God with people who are searching for answers. We are so excited for her and know that she will use these opportunities to impact lives for the Lord. Please continue to pray for Lilibeth.
On Aug 5 we hosted a dinner in our home for our pastors and wives and the members of our Santa Cruz leadership committee. Pastor Hervert Rios (the president of the committee) invited the pastors to share any struggles they were having in their churches. They then discussed how the leadership committee could be of help in these areas. Pastor Hervert wanted to encourage the pastors and remind them that the committee was there to help them in any way they could. It was a really special evening! We look forward to more dinners in our home to encourage our pastors and leaders. We are really seeing that many of our Bolivian leaders are very capable, but they need to be encouraged. They are such wonderful people! We love working alongside them.
School started up early in August for our kids, Trevor (12th grade) and Tasha (10th grade). Since then we have had some interesting things happen. A few weeks ago on a Friday we heard that there had been one confirmed case of the H1N1 flu in the school. It happened to be a student in Tasha’s class. The following Monday all students and teachers had to wear masks at school. We heard that if the school had five confirmed cases of the flu it would have to shut down. Monday evening we got the word that students were to report to school Tuesday morning for a half-day (with their masks on) to turn homework in and pick up their work for the rest of the week. School would be closed for the rest of the week. The following Monday school was back to normal, at least that is what we thought. Things were fine until Thursday evening when we heard that all schools were being shut down by the government, starting immediately. So far, there have been three confirmed deaths from the flu. We were informed that parents needed to go to school on Monday morning to pick up work for their students…no students were going to be allowed on campus until Oct. 10. So our kids have had some interesting days, and some extra vacation days even though they were given a lot of schoolwork to complete during this time. This has been a big change from last year in which not one day of school was canceled over the whole school year.
We want to thank each of you who so faithfully support us! We are truly grateful for all your prayers and financial support. Because of your continuing faithfulness we can continue to minister here in Bolivia! If you would like to donate online to our ministry through Grace Ministries International, please click here.
1. for the planning and preparations for the 53rd anniversary of our mission here in Bolivia, Mision Evangelica Bethesda. The celebration is set for Dec. 2nd through the 4th.
2. as the Bolivian government has shutdown all of the Santa Cruz schools for ten days due to the H1N1 flu crisis.
3. for Lilibeth Ortega as she continues her two-year ministry aboard the Logos Hope missions ship.
4. for God’s strength and wisdom for Dan and myself in our ministry responsibilities.
5. for the ongoing development and operations of Camp Buena Vista.
1. for the good news of the re-opening of our mission work in the department of Oruro, Bolivia.
2. that our family has stayed healthy in the midst of this flu crisis.
3. for the wonderful christian testimonies of the four teachers honored for their 25 years of service at Henry Prince school.
Serving through Christ,
Dan, Mary Sue, Trevor, and Tasha Reed