A few weeks ago, Nate & Reagan boarded Nate's first international flight since the pandemic began, and headed for Guatemala. The goal of this trip was to meet with some of our pastors, spend time with our staff, and check out what international travel in this new era looks like.
While in Guatemala, Nate and Reagan, along with our full-time Guatemalan staff, met with two different partners to see how their ministries have changed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Pastor Roberto transformed the second story of his church to become a shelter for the homeless and prostitutes who were no longer allowed on the streets. During this intense time, Pastor Robert and the local church showed the love of Jesus in a very tangible way to these people that are often shunned and pushed aside. After housing these people for a long time, the government took over this ministry and continues to assist and shelter the same people! How incredible is that! The church started the ministry and the government is now paying the bill and continuing to assist these people with the hopes of restoring each person!
Pastor Rudy was the other pastor that we met with. About half of his congregation lost their jobs during the pandemic. With limited resources, and the church not being able to meet in person, Pastor Rudy went house to house to pray with, encourage, and take communion to the congregation members!
When Pastor Rudy was asked if he felt comfortable receiving a missions team to serve alongside of him and his church, the answer was a resounding "Yes!" and "Just tell me when, so I can tell the congregation. They get so excited knowing missionaries are coming!"
The result of this trip was the confirmation that we are ready to begin receiving teams in Central America again. Taking the proper precautions, and serving alongside our local churches and partners, we can see ministry happen that will continue to build up, encourage, and support the local church.