Volume 3, Issue 5 | May 2020
For mothers and mother-figures, we pray and give thanks. And, God, for all the ways you bring forth new life and nurture it in love, we praise you.
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The first part of Malachi 3:6 says “I the Lord do not change.”  Aren’t you glad that the Lord “is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8) . We have all together been going through some pretty big changes in this past month of April. Wow! It sounds like what we have considered “normal” in the past will soon be replace by a “new normal”. Who knows what that will entail? But God is the same! He has not changed! Those are very comforting words from our Lord as He is still on His throne, fully aware of all that is going on here on earth. He is still present with each one of us, still protecting us, still providing for us, still guiding us and heaven still awaits us as He has promised. None of that has changed. Be encouraged by those truths. Praise God!

Laurie Beth and I have both been carrying on (as best we can) FRBA office work here at our homes. Believe me when I say it has been different. A lot of my ministry with our pastors and staff members has been via cell phone contact. I have spoken with each of our pastors (at least those who answered their phones. I have left messages with those who were not available) over the phone in the past 2 weeks. I have also prayed with and for most of them over the phone. I am hoping to begin with one on one visits with them again soon (while remaining at least 6 feet apart). I do miss that. Zoom meetings are also rapidly becoming the “new” way of having meetings. I have been involved with a few of them and though different, they are effective. We are still available to you and will do the best we can to help you and your ministry however we can.

In the meantime, what do we do? Keep on living! Life continues and so must we. Though a lot has changed in our everyday lives (looking for toilet paper in the grocery store, teaching your child at home, working at home, etc.), I believe God does not want us to give up on life or on Him. Remember, He knows what you are going through and He has not given up on you. During this extra time you may have found on your hands, you could read more from the Bible. I have heard people tell me just that: they are more into Bible reading. You might practice Psalm 46:10: “Be still and know that I am God.”  I have done that a lot lately, sitting alone in my back patio and being “still”. You could pray more. All of us are having to deal with the issues caused by Covid-19 virus. Pray for God’s protection over His children. Volunteer to help others, if you have an opportunity to do so. Get some things done at home that you have not had time to do. Work on your hobby or pick one up. Don’t give up….keep living.

One encouragement I want to leave with you: while going through this time with all of its struggles, difficulties and seemingly constant changes, don’t’ hesitate to seek the Lord first in those things that concern you. When you read about King David’s life, when he encountered problems, he took them to the Lord and the Lord helped him through it. There were a few times when David took things into his own hands, and things got worse. The Lord is always available to listen to you when you call on Him. Many of you have had struggles that most of us don’t know about. I encourage you to seek the Lord in those matters. He will see you through them. He is your constant hope. He will not let go of you.  Matthew 11:28 says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Things may soon be getting back to what may become the “new” normal. Keep your hope alive by walking daily with the Lord. He will see you through. And don’t forget to thank Him for all you have been through. God is indeed doing something great through all this. He will fulfill His will and do what is good for you. I’m praying for you and wishing you the best in the days, weeks and possibly months ahead.  For we know that all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

Your Fellow Servant,
Bro. Loren
During these days of self-isolation, there may be times when neither Loren nor Laurie Beth is in the office during our regular office hours, but we're working from home instead. Please rest assured that we are still available and ready to help you however we can.

We are always available by e-mail: LGFastFRBA@outlook.com or LBScantlinFRBA@outlook.com
and through our cell phones at:
Loren - 830-267-1234 or Laurie Beth - 210-854-9362.
Upcoming Events
(PLEASE NOTE: All events are subject to cancellation or rescheduling
depending on COVID-19 guidelines at the time.)
May 2020
5th - OCL Meeting - 6:30pm
6th - South Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting (see note below)
7th - National Day of Prayer (see below)
10th - Mother's Day
11th-13th - SBTC Church Administrative Assistant's Retreat (Embassy Suites - San Marcos, TX) - CANCELLED
14th - East Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting (see note below)
25th - Memorial Day (FRBA OFFICE CLOSED)
26 th - FRBA Executive Board Meeting
10:00am – ZOOM Business Meeting
(watch your e-mail for details)
28th - North Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting (see note below)
June 2020
2nd - OCL Meeting
3rd - South Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting
(see note below)
7th - FRBA Compa ñ erismo Quarterly Meeting
9th-10th - SBC Annual Meeting
(Orlando, FL) - CANCELLED
11th - East Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting
(see note below)
15th-18th - Area Kids Camp (Alto Frio)
19th-20th - Alto Frio 100-Year Celebration (Alto Frio)
21st - Father's Day
22nd-26th - GA, Acteen & RA Camp (Alto Frio)
25th - North Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting
(see note below)
Pastor's Prayer Meetings : For the month of May, the South Zone will be meeting through Zoom, East & North Zone meetings will most likely be held in person following recommended safety guidelines. Either way, we hope that our pastors will reserve these mornings to pray together (even if not meeting with the group). Specific requests can be sent to Loren for distribution to the other pastors in each zone. Watch your e-mail for specifics about each meeting.
Click HERE for a related press release!
A prayer for Memorial Day

We remember, O Lord, all those people throughout the years who have made the supreme sacrifice for our country, for liberty, for us. Whenever we breathe the air of freedom or claim the right to justice or enjoy the privilege of worship, fill us with gratitude for those who selflessly gave the last full measure of devotion — their very lives — for our benefit.

May these brave men and women now know the joy of eternity and your presence. And may the families of the fallen receive comfort and peace amid their grief. Help us as we minister to their needs. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
COMING SOON!!
Our May Executive Board Meeting will be held via ZOOM. Please watch your e-mails for the meeting link which will be sent out the week prior to the meeting.
May is a month of mission work at Alto Frio! Small groups, families and individuals are invited to come help get the camp ready for summer! Private lodging and meals are provided. They have a wide range of projects and all skill levels are welcome. Email Kim at kim@altofrio.com or call the Alto Frio office at 830-232-5271 if you want to join the fun.
If you haven't had the chance to stop by our YouTube channel to check out our VBS Training videos, you can still do so!

Once you are on our page, you should be able to see the various videos that have been posted, and watch them on your own schedule. Just click on the video(s) you want to watch and voila, you can view any of the training available. If you want to watch more than one video, just hit the "back" arrow on your browser to go back to the main page (or search for it again) and click on another one.
We have provided videos on each of the following training areas:
  • Bible Study
  • Music
  • Missions
  • Crafts
  • Snacks
  • Preschool
  • Pastors and Directors.
We encourage you to send all of your VBS workers to this resource.

To access our YouTube Channel, just click  HERE  
Around the Association
Did you know that Frio River Baptist Association has
online giving available?
Click HERE to make a donation to our general fund
or to one of our special designated funds.
FBC Pleasanton held a Drive-In Easter Sunrise Service which was broadcast over short range FM radio into the cars of those who attended.
FBC Devine has been doing several new things lately:
  • live-stream worship opportunities on Sunday morning
  • drive-by prayer opportunities on Sunday mornings where you can drive by the church and have a minister pray with you at your vehicle
  • weekly Q&A with pastors via Facebook Live
  • Wednesday evening Bible Study & youth lessons via Facebook live
  • drive-in movie nights at the church on Friday nights
  • 24x7 prayer line (by phone) where folks can speak to and pray with a pastor
  • Saturday & Sunday morning prayer meetings for small groups at the church
  • in-person appointments with the pastor are available by appointment
LOVE IN ACTION
Scotty Smith, Associate Pastor at Cowboy Fellowship and Chaplain for the Atascosa County Law Enforcement Officers Association and his friend Rene Martinez, Jr. recently participated in the Texas Police Officers Memorial Ride. They rode 150 miles over the course of two days to honor officers who have died in the line of duty.

Every year in the month of May "Police Week" is celebrated to honor those officers who have died in the line of duty. Part of that remembrance is an annual “Ride for the Fallen” which takes place in each state around the country. In Texas, it is usually a 150 mile bike ride ending at the Texas Peace Officer Memorial on the Capitol lawn in Austin.

Scotty rides each year in memory of a fallen officer from Atascosa County. However, this year, due to COVID-19, the usual ride was cancelled. Our friend Scotty decided to keep the memory of these special men and women alive for another year. 

First, he raised and donated the regular $600 entry fee, to support the families of fallen officers. Then wearing a memorial t-shirt (which listed the names of every Texas Peace Officer to die in the line of duty in 2019), he set off on his bike. His friend Rene Martinez, Jr. rode along for encouragement and support. They started the journey at 5:15am on May 1st and completed it around 4:00pm on May 2nd. Scotty & Rene rode 150 miles (about 75 miles each day) in memory of Atascosa County Deputy Sheriff Avant Burmeister Coward who was shot and killed in Jourdanton on August 2, 1952.

No crowd, no fanfare. Just a humble Chaplain riding to remember the fallen.
The food pantry at First Baptist Church of Jourdanton, was approached at the beginning of April by their partner, the San Antonio Food Bank (SAFB), and asked if they would host an April mega distribution serving over 500 families.  Rene Walker (church secretary & Food Pantry Director) told them they had about 10 volunteers - all over the age of 60 - and did not think they could handle that amount. She referred them to their County Judge, The Honorable Robert L. Hurley to see if he could make this happen by putting out a call for volunteers and coordinating with law enforcement for traffic control.

She gave them his phone number and then emailed the Judge telling him to expect a phone call from SAFB. The church agreed to serve as a registration site, and Pastor Wade Brand designed a form on the church website where people could go to register. He arranged with the SAFB to have the distribution at the county courthouse with the church handling the pre-registration. On Saturday, April 18th they had a very successful distribution with close to 100 volunteers!

Click HERE to see an article about the event that was published in the Pleasanton Express!

They are currently planning another Mega Distribution in coordination with their County Officials and SAFB for the month of May. The date has yet been confirmed. Since they now have the capability to register people on their website, and download the information into an Excel spreadsheet, registration is now very easy.
FBC Pearsall, together with the Pearsall Ministerial Alliance and in cooperation with the Pearsall ISD, served meals to the elderly and shut-ins in Pearsall, Dilley and Moore. They have served over13,000 meals in 19 days!
Joyce Hernandez and Betsy Turner recently made and distributed free face masks for the Somerset community. Senior Pastor Keith Cogburn of Somerset Baptist Church helped with the advertising!
A group from FBC Charlotte and Laurie Beth & Scott Scantlin recently joined several other folks to assist with remodeling and construction projects at Alto Frio Baptist Encampment. They are still in need of more volunteers, so if you have some time to share, give them a call. Click HERE for more pictures.
Operation Christian Love
by Beth Ann Brundrett
How sweet it is to take time to enjoy just being home for a while. Appreciating our family, our many blessings and NOT having deadlines.

Not so for many families here and across the world. Our area of southwest Texas, & adjacent border area in Coahuila, Mexico, has many who are suffering.  No jobs, no income, no food, & no schools has taken its toll. Let’s explore what we can do to make a difference. We can make sure we know our neighbors watch, and listen for their needs. If we see or hear about a need, we can look for a way to help. 

OCL has been asked by some of our volunteers in Eagle Pass to help them form a team to prepare and deliver food bags to the needy who are “falling through the cracks”. As the team there is forming, food and donations are being gathered to provide the supplies needed. Lists of the needy are being prepared by volunteers noting the needs they have recognized. Donations for this ministry, “Helping One Another”, are being received through OCL.  Other groups are thinking about following in these steps. This food will be delivered to the recipients by volunteers.
Mano de Dios Soup Kitchen in Piedras Negras has had to close its doors due to COVID-19 restrictions. So now Jose and Juanita Sepulveda are preparing and delivering food bags for the 63 families they serve.  Recipients receive the blessing on a weekly basis. Their Day of the Child program was cancelled, but at the last minute, the Sepulveda’s were allowed to give the children their gifts using a drive by process. They send their deepest thanks for these donated gifts for the children that were taken across the border starting in December 2019.

The Banda Ministry, also in Piedras Negras, is serving in limited ways. The downtown Bethesda church/homeless shelter & soup kitchen is closed. Even though the prison is closed, they are allowed to deliver food donations to the prison.  These items are left for prison personnel to pick up and take into the unit. The food is prepared by staff for the prisoners the Banda ministry usually serves. When the Banda Ministry learns of families in need near their Bethesda Church neighborhood in the Periodista area, they deliver what food they have to these families.
The seven orphanages (Bethesda for the Handicap, Getsemani, Misericordia, Embassadores de Cristo, the Nazaret Nina’s & Nazaret Nino’s, & Paz de Amor) are struggling to manage with the current restrictions. 

OCL received a large donation from a church in the Frio River Baptist Association with funds designated for each of the above homes and the Vision de Amor home in Ciudad Acuna.  Mano de Dios and the Banda Ministry also received funds, and Iglesia Bautista Jerusalen in Eagle Pass was blessed with money for utilities as well.

Another sizable donation, given by an anonymous individual, is providing funds to the King Ministry in their support of two ministries: the Nino’s Del Rio outreach program in Piedras Negras and Estasion Marte, and Rancho Del Rey Ministry in Jimenez, both are in the State of Coahuila, Mexico.  

The Nino’s Del Rio, headed by Rosita and Adolfo Godina, is an evangelistic outreach program with a feeding program. Their open air services cannot be held until restrictions are lifted but meanwhile, they are working night and day to get food to the most needy in these areas of extreme poverty. 

Fabiola and Pedro Garteno’s Rancho Del Rey Ministry is very limited in what they are allowed to do. However, they also try to continue as food source to the area by maintaining a 2-acre community garden.

Vision de Amor, Ciudad Acuna, and the Rancho Del Rey Ministry, Jimenez, are in the early stages of exploring the possibility of installing hydroponic gardens. OCL will assist with partial funding when their decisions have been made.

The construction project tor the King Ministry has been completed thanks to many hours of volunteer labor and donations.

As we all continue with our lives during the special time, may we gather new insights into how to “Serve God by Serving Others” .

If you wish to assist OCL by donating to these ministries, please mail to:
John E. Heiligman
PO Box 117, Charlotte, TX 78011.
Click HERE to see more pictures of what OCL has been doing.
January 1st thru March 31st
2019
Income: $52,451.01
Expenses: $49,104.38
2020
Income: $49,864.75
Expenses: $43,789.34
FRBA RESOURCE LIBRARY
This NEW Bible study and many more are available
through our resource library!

Children of the Day
1st & 2nd Thessalonians
by Beth Moore
(9-session DVD study)

Click HERE to download one of our checkout forms.
Then just complete it and bring it by the office to borrow a
Bible study to meet your needs.

We’re also accepting donations of used DVD Bible study kits.
If you or your church have some that you are no longer using, we’d love
to have them here to share with other churches in our Association.
Frio River Baptist Association | Phone: 830-334-2061 | Fax: 830-334-3025 | Email | Website