February 2019

New Discipleship Group


So far in our ministry we have been traveling to the communities in the mountains, but we have come to realize that many have migrated to the cities for work. One community called "Shobol Llin Llin" lies only 15 minutes from Riobamba. One of their leaders, José, invited us to their community. They wanted help with a discipleship program. My first reaction was to explain to them that discipleship is more than just a bible study. Discipleship is investing your life in others. They liked the idea. So now we have begun to meet with the leaders of the home groups that meet during the week. We meet in Riobamba, because most of them live and work there. Our meetings are on Thursdays, and each of them lead a home group on Mondays. We are praying for wisdom with this new group on how to teach them to work with their home gruops. Proverbs 3:5-6

God sends us to help others!

Faby came down with a cold. We were going to spend the week in Riobamba, but the climate is warmer in El-Tingo and better for Faby's recovery. We had barely arrived at home when we receive a call that a pastor we know is in the emergency room at a nearby hospital. That was the first visit of many all week long. We gave his wife, Carmen, rides to and from the hospital, and spent many trips between two hospitals trying to facilite his transfer to where they can offer treatment. God puts us where He need us. Concepcion has been diagnosed with leucemia. He and Carmen will need a lot of support in the following weeks and months. So far he is still awaiting the transfer. Tonight his mother flys in from Peru to be with him.


This morning we were about to go out for some errands when the phone rang. A brother from Capulispungo is asking for our help. His daughter was detained in Houston, Texas with no ID papers. Within an hour, his daughter, son-in-law and wife were at our doorstep. Martina had reached and crossed the US border with help from the "coyotes" but was stopped in Houston. To top-off the story, she went with her neice to take her to her mom in Boston. At the moment they are separated. One of many similar stories of poor, rural folk looking for a better life.


Now I can see the urgent need to establish small businesses in the Quichua communities. They are migrating for work not only to local cities, but also to other countries.

Test results!


I don't often get an outside shot of the group at Capulispungo. This was the shot "before the exam." The following photo is during the exam. This study of Jeremiah is a real killer: a wonderful study of the book of Jeremiah, but so much information that the students couldn't absorb it all. I let them prepare a "cheat sheet" for the exam, but in the end I let them use all their resources at hand. Still they struggled. I could tell that some of the questions were so long that they didn't even understand what the question was asking.
I received a big surprise when I graded the exams. The two highest scores were no surprise. Pablo and Manuel Manya are excellent students. Still their scores were 75 and 74. Yet I was amazed at the third and fourth highest scores made by father and son who work together: Neicer and Inocencio. Inocencio can barely read and write. His son is only 14. Yet they made higher scores than most of the rest! Usually they score in last place. They did something right. Next month I plan to find out the key to their success.


New Project is a big surprise.


Tuesday Faby led her second session with the school teachers in Cachisagua. We arrived early, and Faby visited some of the classrooms. Never had she seen a school in such sad shape. Not just the lack of school material, but the lack of discipline among the students, plus the disinterest of some. The situation is complicated: students whose parents work all day in the city; teachers who have lost the motivation to improve their teaching; little support from the school county board. Wow! May God pour out his grace and mercy on this community!