SO THANKFUL FOR THOSE THAT COME AND SERVE

  Roy, Carla, Nate, Tim, Brenda, Abby, Seth, April, Lexy, Mike and Bambi. Those are the names of the group that drove all the way from Illinois to serve. We spent 3 days at Big Heart Orphanage in Reynosa.  We formed and mixed concrete for a curb, about 150 feet I think. Poured 5 truck loads of concrete for the new kitchen.  Roy, Carla and Nate spent the night there as Roy and Rick ran the helicopters to polish the floor past midnight.
  Thursday the team came to our house to bag beans and rice before heading to Mexico. It was cold and raining all day, but we managed to get where we wanted to hand out the shoe box gifts. 100 to Casa Hogar Mami, 16 to big heart, we then went to Senda De Vida home for the wandering migrants in Reynosa.  300 people there and about 75 kids. They were happy to get the nice gifts prepared by Laharpe Christian Church,  Stronghurst church, and a few others. We still had about 75 boxes left, so we took them to the Squatters camp,  outside of the colonia we normally work in. The kids braved the cold and rain to come for their gift box.
  A great week inspire of not building a house, as is what this group usually does. The ministry is changing to help those in need without building a house in an area that can be considered dangerous.  Team safety is a priority,  and the orphanages are the best place for now.
  We encourage teams to come back to Mexico and trust God that if He has called you there, He will be with you.






MAGICAL

  Last week, we joined our kids in Florida for a couple days to celebrate Leas 4th birthday. I haven't been to Disney world in 30 years. One 12 hour day visiting all of Leas  Disney friends. Waiting in lines for a photo was worth the look on Leas face when the characters gave her the attention she desired to feel special.
  So better is one day in Disney than thousands elsewhere. We too Kris, Larry and Lea to the airport the next day, drovevKelly to meet a friend in Ocala, then headed to Hilton Head island to spend a few days with a couple that supports the ministry.
  This week, the group from Laharpe Christian Church in Illinois is here and we're working at Big Heart Orphanage in Reynosa. Lots and lots of concrete work. We poured the floor for the new kitchen late yesterday. Waiting for the trucks to deliver the concrete was a test if patients.
  The group brought hundreds of shoe box gifts for the kids in Mexico and well Hand them out today and tomorrow.







A STRONG TOWER

  The name of the Lord, is A STRONG TOWER. The righteous run into it , and we are saved. How often do we run into Him? So often I think I can do it on my own, but it always come up short of whatever, " I'm " trying to achieve.
  Speaking of towers,  the tower in the colonia is getting some much needed repairs, a paint job, and a new well pump to continue supplying the colonia with water.  You don't know what you have, until it's gone. There's been no water in half of the colonia for several weeks, but that's changing as I type.
  Several men along with Scott from ROHI, David, Andres, David Jr, Juan, and several others have been busy getting everything done. This project is costing several thousand dollars and is really the first major maintenance project since installing the water system over 3 years ago.
  Your annual giving statements have gone out, so if you didn't get yours and you itemize on your taxes, let us know, and we'll get it to you. We had over 70 people donate at one time or another last year and we are truly grateful. I just completed our books for the year, and everything balanced. Thank God for 25 column ledgers and old fashioned math. We had donations of 147,453.oo and expenses of 147,478.00. Neither Paula or I took a paycheck from the ministry, we live on our S.S. benifit.  So to everyone paying taxes, Thank You.




NOT WHY? BUT WHAT'S NEXT LORD

  While on the last days of my trip with Power Ministry,  I got word of our good friend Marks passing from this life to his heavenly home. Mark finished well! Having accepted Christ as Saviour 5 years ago, he became passionately involved in the building of Melodys Orphanage in Reynosa,  and supporting it almost entirely on his own. His legacy will indeed live on.
  A good friend of Mark's supplied Paula, Jaime and me free airfare to fly to Chicago to offer what comfort we could to Kathy and the family. I've never seen so many people at a wake and funeral. Mark was loved and respected by many, and he will be missed.
  Last Sunday we were able to attend the 75th anniversary of Moraine Valley Church.  It was quite an event, followed by food and fellowship. It's always good to go home, if only for a few days.
  Upon our return home, the Senior Carpenter's Crew were hard working at Big Heart Orphanage in Reynosa. They asked me if I could drive them to Big Heart Orphanage in the mountains near Saltillo on Wednesday. We made the over and back trip the same day, just taking a tour, eating lunch, and then heading back.
  We held our monthly food outreach Saturday morning and 170 families came, to worship God, hear the Word, and recieved the food that a team from Balstrop Texas had provided the funds for. They also came and shared the message.
  Paula is battling the flu, and is on the mend. I spent the last few days preparing donation statements for all those that have been a part of all of our ministries, and we want to thank you all. About 75 different people donated to the ministry. WOW!







YOU WILL RECEIVE POWER. WHEN?

   The bible says,  when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. Thats Power Ministry's scripture verse. And it came as I spent the last week traveling around Texas and Mexico doing various work projects from Acuna Mexico to Reynosa Mexico.  The last time I joined them on their trip I suffered a heart attack and it cut my trip short. This year a good friend and partner in the ministry died of a heart attack  and that cut this year's trip short.
  Mark Grennell got radically saved a few years ago when he joined us on a home building missions trip. I sit in the airport heading to Chicago to celebrate Marks life and rejoice at his life well lived.
  Our projects with Power included many building projects, street evangelism,  a carnival for the community, worship time, devotions daily, and some great fellowship.







NEW YEAR, NEW OPPORTUNITIES

  I forgot to post in 2020. Now that sounds strange, 2020. We were at Big Heart Orphanage in the mountains, bringing in the New Year with a group from Illinois, a group from Louisiana, us, and a few from Reynosa.  35 people or so, ringing in the new year serving God.
  We mixed and poured concrete, framed, insulated and sided the New game room, some painted, they also held events for the kids in the colonia.
  A fireside worship service kept me and Paula can get up almost until midnight, but we couldn't make it. The pastor from Louisiana made us gumbo new years day and it was spectacular. It rained all day but we still worked all day.
   Tomorrow we go back to the colonia and Melodys Orphanage to drop off some donated bread, pies and some meat. I have another eye injection in the afternoon. This week I leave on Thursday to join Power Ministry for another missions trip.  I'll be returning to the town I had my heart attack in April and trusting this trip will be better.
 On a sad note, our 12 year old cat Luna had to be put to sleep while we were gone last week. I'm glad we weren't there. She was such a good cat. Takoo is missing his sister.
  Thanks to all that sent a year end gift to the ministry. It really encourage our hearts to experience God's goodness. And thanks as well to our monthly partners.  God has some interesting things planned for this year.