The fact that March bounced in yesterday came as a surprise. Yes, February is a short month but that isn't why it was surprising. Yes, for the first time in our missionary career we are able to watch regular season Kentucky basketball games on a semi-regular basis (and hopefully that will include post-season play) but March-Madness isn't the surprise. The surprise is that it is ONLY March. We have been so busy bouncing around that it seems like it should be June already! (And it doesn't help that living so close to the equator means all months look the same.)

However, now that we're aware and pumped up about the upcoming March Madness, we hope you'll humor us by putting up with a few basketball analogies while we wait for June to actually arrive.
Fast break annual meetings
Supt. Ceferino is newly re-elected.
There were two annual meetings scheduled for the end of January and one in February BUT the rebound of Covid cases led to one being postponed and the other two quickly changed to online formats.

Both Ecuador and Paraguay adopted a hybrid version, with some participants joining together to attend the meeting online. In Paraguay, they re-elected Superintendent Ceferino Ramirez (pictured here)for another 4 year term. Although never the same, one of the blessings of online meetings is that we are able to invite trainers from many different countries with no increased travel costs and so members of the Area Leadership team each led short sessions on the Free Methodist Values. Perhaps you could say it was a Slam dunk!
Full court press planning
Tuesday morning meetings
Due to the leadership summit in January, our usual beginning of the year planning and strategizing meetings got postponed until February. It has been a full-court press...meeting after meeting with each leadership team and drawing up the game plan for the rest of the year. We are thankful for the great team of leaders that God has brought together. We meet with the team pictured here every Tuesday morning to pray, encourage, plan and discuss all that God is doing in and through His people in Latin America.
Connecting with the Head Coach
We are excited to see Pastoral Care groups going strong which include all of the missionaries as well as all of the Latin American leaders. There are over 60 intercessory prayer groups meeting through-out the region and this Saturday we hope that over 300 people will participate in a special area-wide seminar to help us focus on the main thing...our connection to God and His call on our lives.

In February we also had the unusual honor of preaching two Sunday's in our local church. Beth was first and then Ricardo followed up the next week.
Traveling may be against the rules in basketball, but now that the covid restrictions are lifting, it will become a constant part of our lives (especially Ricardo's). Please pray for the following trips:
March 10 - 14 Ricardo will be in Bolivia to lead the first annual meeting there and welcome Bolivia as a mission district.
March 23 - 28 Ricardo is taking a resident photographer (Jonathan) with him as he presides over the annual meeting in Puerto Rico.
April 2 - 6 Ricardo travels to Indianapolis for meetings with the Bishops and other Area Directors.
February was also a month in which we experienced loss. One of our missionaries, Dan Owsley's mother went home to be with the Lord as did Beth's life-long pastor and our good friend. Separation is always difficult and death stings, but we know God is in control and we celebrate that they have reached their eternal reward!

On the home front, things are going fairly well. Juliana is now more than a month in to University. She is studying Psychology and enjoying it. Jonathan is studying World War I and World War II in his Modern World History class this semester and relating it to the realities of today. Our hearts are broken for the situation in the Ukraine and we keep it in our constant prayers.

We also pray for you and we thank God for you. Together we make a great team! (to make a donation or com, click on the link below the picture.)

Many blessings,
Ricardo, Beth, Juliana & Jonathan

p.s. We love that our friend, fellow-missionary and teammate, Andrea Tinsley, lives just across the street. We enjoyed a recent evening at the movies...and look forward to cheering our Wildcats to victory now that we are convinced that it is indeed March!
Pray with us for...
  • God's continuing direction and provision for the Latin American leaders and missionaries
  • the upcoming annual meetings
  • God's wisdom to lead the Area as we participate with Him in the restoration of Latin America by developing healthy leaders, multiplying committed disciples and empowering transformational churches.