As many of you know our area of the world has been hit by multiple natural disasters recently. First the hurricane in Florida, then Puerto Rico and a tropical storm affecting Central America that left more than 15 dead in Costa Rica alone! We have been in crisis mode for weeks and we are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
Thank you all for your extra prayers and support during the last few weeks. It has been difficult but God was glorified as His church here in Costa Rica united to care for those in need. Dennis and Elias were away in Florida, visiting churches and dealing with a crisis of their own when Elias fell and broke his arm, while Costa Rica was getting drenched by tropical storm Nate. Although Kyle and the rest of the kids were safe, the area of Costa Rica that we live and serve in was heavily affected by the storm. Many people were evacuated from their homes in Parrita and Quepos. Main roads were destroyed, rivers changed their courses and whole communities became unaccessible with out water or electricity for days.
But despite the rain, people from the church were already moving, opening shelters, collecting and distributing food, and dry clothes to those who were affected.
It was a terrible situation, but God was glorified as the body of Christ came together. People stepped up, gave generously, used their gifts and resources to help their neighbors. The church was perfectly positioned with key leaders in the affected communities to be able to respond rapidly to the crisis and be the first to give aid to those in need.
We have now moved out of crisis mode and into reconstruction mode, helping people clean up the mess, and repair their homes. Please continue to pray for those affected, that the church can continue to be a blessing and shine His light even in this difficult situation.
Before Costa Rica was hit by Nate, we had been been preparing a small team to go help with the reconstruction efforts in Puerto Rico along with the Free Methodist Church of Santa Barbara. Although much energy was spent on our own crisis here, we still feel God calling us to help our neighbors in Puerto Rico who are suffering so much. There are only a few communities who are still without electricity in Costa Rica, but Puerto Rico is still mostly without power or potable water. There are terrible shortages of basic supplies and damage to many of the the church buildings. So we are sending a small team of engineers and architects along with a children’s worker to go and analyze the damage so that future work teams can be more affective in helping rebuild in the next few months. This will be the first international mission team that we send out and we need to raise about $5000. Please prayerfully consider joining this team with a donation and keeping them in your prayers, click here to give. They will be going from November 6-10. The Puerto Rican church has asked for water filters and generators and we are having a hard time figuring out how to get generators there, as no one will ship them and no airlines will accept them as luggage right now. I know God can make it happen but please pray for this situation.
- that the details for the trip to Puerto Rico will come together soon
- Dennis will be going to Amman, Jordan for a Community Church planting conference at the end of the month. Pray for safety and lots of good learning opportunity.
- Elias broken arm is healing nicely, he had an x-ray today and everything looks good. Pray for fast healing, patience and that he can resist the urge to itch
- the church can continue to be a witness of His love to those affected by the flooding