September 2020 Newsletter
Dear Christian Brothers and Sisters,
Well, we are still in the “basement”, and we only go into the city when necessary, which fortunately isn’t often. Things aren’t looking good here. There are more COVID cases in Estancia, and we have had two deaths in the last five days. Estancia is quite small; so once the virus made its way here, word spread quickly of more folks getting sick. We have noticed a strange phenomenon. Estancia is divided into two areas – east and west. The west side is where all the COVID cases and fatalities have been. I very seldom go to that side of town since we have everything we need here: stores, welders, carpenters, etc. We continue to take all precautions necessary and hope to escape this horrible pandemic.
Our churches remain open but they are limiting the number of people due to social
distancing. The older folks and small children have not started back yet. In spite of circumstances, we have a new family that started attending the Loreto Church this month. The
schools, which have created a serious problem for many families, are operating online. Not everyone has a laptop or computer, and many do not have internet service. The elementary school has a strange schedule. Classes go from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm and then return at 4:00 and go until 7:00 pm. Moms of children this age have to be right there watching and encouraging. Otherwise, the child may lose interest and fall asleep or play around. That’s what happened to Sebastian. His mom left just for a few minutes to go to the kitchen. When she returned, he was sound asleep. After she woke him, he said, “Mom, it’s so boring!” Poor kids...
Dr. Freddy has written an informative report concerning the Bethshean Clinic in this newsletter. He and his wife, who is a nurse, will soon come to work with us in Estancia. Dr. Freddy had built up a thriving practice that was going very well in the States. But, when God called, Dr. Freddy and Carol answered. Freddy closed his practice, and soon he and Carol will be with us on a full-time basis!
I have frantically been working to build a house where they will reside. It was completed just this month. There are a few minor details left, but that’s the way it is when building a house. I thought I would share a picture of it. There’s a gazebo between their house and mine, and I look forward to meeting there for fellowship and cookouts. Dr. Freddy is a great cook!
Also included in this newsletter is an article from Manuel, the minister of the Sauceda Christian Church. Manuel and his wife, Fernanda, work hard for the Lord through the Mission and for His Church. They have two beautiful children.
ABDIEL AND SHANNON…
Praise God! My wife, Shannon, and I had the opportunity to go to Guadalajara for a detox treatment. We were looking for help in homeopathic medicine to better our health so we could continue to serve our God. The four days we were at the clinic were very good. It was a completely different experience from traditional medicine. Praise God for Dr. Freddy’s visit to Estancia! We took advantage of his willingness to take time out of his activities to help take care of three of our daughters while we were gone. Now that we are home, we will continue the treatment as much as possible for at least 30 days. As of now, I am feeling much better. I haven’t had symptoms (stomach pain, etc.) for the last five days, and I have had more energy. This is a big victory! I am currently being treated for gastritis and colitis, and I continue to keep a pretty strict diet. Lord willing, I know I will feel like “myself” again soon!!!
Praise God for His church and the love shown in prayer and encouraging words for our family. To Him be the glory!!! Praise God for our sister, Cris, who has been supportive and understanding during these trying times.
We are so thankful to God for everything because His will is good and perfect!
“…Give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:18
DR. FREDDY’S BETHSHEAN CLINIC UPDATE…
This sure has been a long and strange year with the COVID-19 pandemic. Nothing has been normal with regard to life and activities. We have had to change the way we do things, wear masks in public places, and socially distance ourselves. All these things go against our human nature and our need for human contact and community. We have had to forego hugs and handshakes which had previously been second nature.
In this year of change, there are some things that remain constant. First and foremost is that even with the COVID-19 pandemic, God is still on His throne and He is still in control. I have found many times this year that I have had to remind myself of this truth. In addition, we must remember that Christ’s story of redemption, salvation, and grace needs to be shared and spread to the world.
The work on the Bethshean Clinic is continuing despite the pandemic. Over the past 3-4 weeks, Juan Frausto and his co-worker have been busy with making repairs and painting the clinic. Everything is looking so nice with the fresh coat of paint. The clinic is shaping up! Since the beginning of September, I have been in Estancia de Animas to work toward getting the clinic ready to open soon. My time here has been spent going through boxes of supplies and equipment, cleaning cabinet shelves, and starting the process of stocking the rooms. In addition, we now have job descriptions and salary estimates for the clinic positions as well as a preliminary budget for the first year.
Over the past 3 weeks, I have re-energized the vision for the Bethshean Clinic. I see that the need for the clinic is still as prevalent as it was when we started this project over 10 years ago. Thinking back on those years, I can see God’s hand gently and precisely directing everything to bring this project to this time. I know He has great things planned and many lives will be influenced and changed for Christ.
As I finish this update, I am reminded there are some ways that we still need your help to see this project to completion. We need your prayers as we search for and hire the appropriate staff for the clinic. Pray for Bethshean Clinic to be a beacon of light for the hurting and lost people in Mexico. Pray that Bethshean Clinic will glorify and uplift the name of Jesus Christ. Finally, we need your financial help to finish stocking the clinic with the remaining equipment and to support the operating expenses for the first 1-2 years; depending on how quickly the clinic can become fully functioning and can generate self-sustaining revenue.
Thank you for all you have done to support and encourage this project over the years. Carol and I are excited about our opportunity to work with Bethshean Mexico Mission. We are planning to be in Mexico full-time around the first of the year.
In His Service,
MANUEL AND FERNANDA - MINISTER OF SAUCEDA CHRISTIAN CHURCH…
One day my wife gave me an idea. She said, “Why not have an activity with the brethren of the congregation that will help them to change their daily routine of life and also to encourage them in their walk with the Lord during these difficult times?”
We wanted to provide an event for the ten teenagers and their families who are a part of our congregation. We thank God! Activities began September 18th at 5:00 pm at the Bethshean Family Camp. Our program consisted of music, television programs, social networking, praise songs, prayers, activities, and sports. The young people were encouraged and strengthened spiritually. Socially, they were able to know one another better and have a greater appreciation of each other.
At the end, they all expressed their appreciation for the event and their desire to consistently walk in faith throughout their lives. They were so uplifted. Lord willing, they plan to do this again in October.
Manuel and Fernanda Herrera
MANY, MANY THANKS…
How can I possibly put into words my appreciation to the Lord and to each one of you who have faithfully supported the Bethshean Mexico Mission these past 50 plus years? You have been with us through thick and thin and in moments of “sickness and health”. The Lord has blessed this Mission with wonderful Christian friends and supporters - not just with finances, but with prayers which were heard and answered so many times. I am thankful…very thankful! We will continue to faithfully serve the Lord in this area. God bless each one.
Please continue to pray for:
Dr. Freddy and Carol as they begin their journey as missionaries
God to bring the national doctor He would have working in the Bethshean Clinic alongside Dr. Freddy
That the Lord will bring together the proper medical team and workers
Abdiel and Shannon as they fully recover
The Sauceda Church youth in their spiritual growth and walk with the Lord
Mission Ministers: Ruben, Ricardo, Silvino, Manuel, Abdiel, Juan Cordova, as they work so diligently with the churches
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