Guatemala – Tragedy and Training
As most of you have heard, Guatemala experienced the worst volcanic eruption since 1902 this past Sunday. Thousands have been affected and over 25 lost their lives. Two weeks before this tragic event, Shepherds’ Support led a training conference only 11 miles from the volcano in Antigua for the staff of the Potter’s House Association. The tragedy highlights the importance of equipping ministry leaders so they can better share the Gospel message of forgiveness and hope to a suffering world crying out for answers.
We really believe that the Lord brought together this special teaching team for such a time as this. Thank you for your prayers for unity and the power of God’s Word spoken through each member of our team. Here are a few highlights from our week together.
The Potter’s House Association Guatemala is celebrating 31 years of ministry to the thousands of marginalized Guatemalans who wrestle with the bondage of extreme poverty. PHA reaches out wholistically with the love of Jesus through a variety of ministries to develop, empower and multiply leaders. It was a great delight for all of us to get to know them, hear their stories and be blessed by their friendship. Now, they are better equipped to share the love of Christ with those in need.
Arlie Francis, the president of DiscipleDaily and his wife, Noemi, joined us to equip the staff with a Biblical storytelling methodology that can be used to share the Gospel and make disciples with people who may struggle with traditional reading based approaches.
Michael Loudermilk from Wayside Chapel challenged the staff to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord by living a victorious Kingdom life and to please God in all respects whether married or single. Michael and Victoria connected well with the younger staff.
During a special time just for couples, Jim and Arline Parris from Paraclete Mission Group shared practical insights and tools for the married couples increasing their knowledge of God and one another so that they might bear fruit through a lifetime of marriage and ministry.
Rick and Diana encouraged the couples to value the blessing of their marriage as part of God’s sanctifying work in their lives. The final day concluded with a special foot washing ceremony reaffirming our marriage vows filled with tears and joy.
David and Mariela met each other at the Potter’s House as children. Mariela grew up as one of the “Treasures” who worked in the Guatemala City garbage dump. She was sought out by the Potter’s House and came to faith in Christ at a young age. Participating in the education program, Mariella found her own value in God’s eyes and discovered the joy of learning about the world around her through her relationship with Jesus. Longing to give other “Treasures” what God had given her, today she teaches middle schoolers at the Potter’s House. She was so excited to welcome her husband, David, to the second half of the retreat that was focused on couples. David is a soccer coach, who uses sports as a vehicle for the eternal reclamation and restoration of those he coaches.
You can learn more about each of the conferences, sign up for updates or donate to support them by going to: shepherdssupport.org/ministry-trips
Now we are preparing for our
Zambia Pastors Conference
July 5 – July 16
N. Central Asia Pastors Conference
August 16 – 27
And the Shepherds’ Support Board: Steve and Connie Troxel, David and Beth Butler, Lannie and Melba Green, Jack and Nancy Shirley, Sid and Zane Williams