The Mission Committee of our home-church in Pittsburgh, the Allegheny Center Alliance Church has approved us as Gospel Messengers! ACAC commissions and supports a group of missionaries year round and we are blessed to belong to that group. Prayerfully and financially they are standing behind us as we follow the Lord’s lead in the mission field domestically in Los Angeles and also in Hungary. They are our sending church and our true church family whose love and prayers continue to cover us wherever we are. Thank you Lord for your faithfulness, provisions and continuous encouragement!
Every weekday afternoon except Friday we help the kids to do their homework. This is so very important because most of their parents don’t speak English so they can’t help them at all. Most of these kids started school not speaking a word of English themselves either and just picked it up as they went. If they have questions, if they don’t understand something, their parents can’t explain it to them so they fall behind. Needless to say they also need someone to tell them to sit down and actually DO their homework. We pack the tables and chairs out in front of the apartment buildings (thanks to the year-round good weather in California) and pack it all away when we are done.
After homework is done the kids can let some of their energies out on the little dirt field behind the buildings by playing some soccer. We also pray with them.
At the end of March I had the privilege to serve as a counselor to a group of boys from our three neighborhoods who also participate in programs run by Lot 318, another organization we often work together with. They were able to arrange for a three day long trip for the kids to the wonderful Calicinto Ranch and needed some help. The kids were full of excitement and anticipation.
I thought I had it all figured out: they will be happy and overwhelmed by all the new experiences and I will be worn out by trying to keep them calm. I was right with the first part, but totally wrong about my own experience.
Their sheer joy for all the activities we have done together, or for the most simple things such as having their own bed to sleep in at night humbled me and touched me so deeply that I hadn’t anticipated. Seeing their faces as they learnt songs about Christ and as they sang it again and again and they slowly realized the meaning of the lyrics was so wonderful. I know it was just three days, but I’m sure they all will have moments they will remember for a long time. …I surely will.
This Saturday, before Easter Sunday we wanted to have a chance to remind everyone of the meaning of Easter in our small Anaheim neighborhood. So we grilled some hot dogs, played some Christian music and gave away some toys and kids’ clothes to anyone who came by. And every visitor also got a bilingual brochure with the salvation message and a small Book of John in Spanish. …The first person to come over early in the morning to get some toys for his kids was actually one of the young guys from the gang who threatened us soon after we moved here. He came over with a big smile and left with some toys for his toddlers and the salvation message. We made friends. He and one of the other toughest guys also say hi to us kindly lately. I’m glad, but I still feel a little “iffy” sometimes. I don’t know, maybe I shouldn’t… The kids of course stayed to play till late afternoon. We talked about God, Jesus, Easter, creation and resurrection. God is good!
“Very truly I tell you, the one who believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life.”
John 6:47-48 NIVMarch 7th
“Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.”
Romans 6:8 NIV
|Each month has a topic. We also explain the verses and talk about them to help the kids relate God’s word to their lives. These are the verses for this month:
We are approaching the end of our first year serving in our 3 small communities. With continuous prayers and the Lord’s blessings we achieved that people know us and accepted us. We learnt a lot during these past 11 months about urban ministry. We now see the various effects of people’s cultural heritage and family situation on their developing identity, on their outlook on life and on their chances to break out of a cycle of crime and poverty. When we moved in here we were on fire for the Lord and felt that we could change the world for the better. Our fire is now more like red, burning charcoal and we feel to be much smaller. We now know that WE cannot achieve anything, only HE can. Our best is to be available, pray and discern His will, be obedient and act in bold faith. We now see people’s needs here more clearly and the obstacles we face when we try to impact their lives. We need to better focus our efforts on sharing the Gospel and trust God’s Word to do what only HE can do: work in people’s heart. Please pray that instead of falling into the trap of trying to help them with all their problems, we will focus on talking to them about Christ and His love for us. Please pray for:
- The successful organization of regular prayer walks in all three neighborhoods
- The development of a small community field in two of our neighborhoods
- Protection from evil for the three neighborhoods, for the other missionary couple (Josh and Adriana) and for us.