I will write a more complete update after the weekend. However, I wanted y’all to be in prayer for something very particular this weekend.
This weekend, our ministry partner and friend, Pastor Ed Perez and his team are hosting their 8th Children’s Ministry Conference. They host this conference 3 to 4 times per year specifically to engage and equip pastors and leaders in Belize to minister to children in their local village. It began in 2011 with a conference where 8 churches were represented.
This weekend there are 65 churches currently registered for the training. Conservatively estimating an average of 100 kids per church that’s over 6000 children all over Belize that are being blessed by this ministry.
This weekend Amy and I are reaching way back to our Kid City days at Hope Community Church and are teaching children’s song choreography to all the attendees. We are stoked to be able to contribute a small part to help engage the children of Belize on their level. Plus, how awesome is it going to be to hear “Oh Happy Day” and “Jesus You are My Best Friend” all over Belize?1?
In addition to that, I get the opportunity to sit down with approximately 65 pastors and hear about their ministry, their heart, and their needs. Many of the pastors I already know so it is a reunion with some friends. Others I have never met and I get the chance to listen, encourage and pray for them. What an honor!
An example from yesterday:
Pastor Ed and I drove to the Guatemala border to pick up two pastors representing over 165 churches in El Salvador. These pastors heard about his training and road non-stop 12+ hours on a bus, and slept in a bus terminal overnight to attend Pastor Ed’s training. Their desire is to replicate the training they observe here in El Salvador. I was able to sit and hear the struggles of El Salvador, stories of street kids and crime. I heard stories of drugs and I heard stories of their churches. Those were stories of rescue and redemption. I heard how they are going to apply what they learn at Pastor Ed’s training to the street kids all around El Salvador. I was humbled.
As you are doing your thing this weekend, including watching college football, take a moment and pray for us. Pray for…
- 75 churches to attend Pastor Ed’s training
- Our family as we are gone from home all day on Saturday and Sunday. Pray specifically for the kids to behave and for Amy to have low anxiety.
- My conversations with pastors. Pray that I can listen authentically and shut my mouth. Pray that the Lord gives me wisdom and discernment on how to encourage them.
- Pastor Ed and his family and ministry team. Pray for super natural strength over the weekend and pray that Monday begins a long and well-deserved week of rest.
Pastor Ed’s ministry has a slogan or really a vision they operate by: “Changing Belize one child at a time.” As Pastor Ed and I have talked, I was encouraging him to change it to “Changing Central America one child at a time.” El Salvador is the first step. Guatemala next year….then who knows? Praise God for the doors he is opening and the man of God that is leading a team to answer when God knocks! Our family is truly blessed to partner with Pastor Ed in ministry but more importantly call him a friend.