This photo shows one of the points where fires have been burning during the weekend and now.
This particular one is behind the rural Mapuche community where Bishop Abelino was born and raised. Fortunately, in this case, the fire has gone away from homes.
But as we write, they are evacuating people from where Marita’s family lives and there the fires have reached to their nearest neighbor’s property.
On Saturday night, Pedro spent most of the night helping protect the school where his father works and right now he and Joyanne have gone out to Marita’s family home to offer their help.
In Malalche, houses have been burned, two people have died, and Pastor Antonio is worried.
In Dollinco, they have no electricity, so they have no water, and that makes it difficult for Pastor José’s family, as their daughter, Adriana, is terminally ill with cancer.
In our own church in Labranza, Sonia, one of the members, was worried yesterday that their wheat crop will be burned if they can’t get it harvested.
The sky is gray and smoky today in Temuco and a nearby hill is on fire.Please pray for us and especially our brothers and sisters in the rural churches whose livelihood depends on their crops, animals and wooded land.
Thank you for your prayers. We will keep you posted.
Russ and Heidi
Who am I?
Hi! This is my very first blog post from Chile, where I am serving as a SAMS Bridger for just over 2 months. This is the start of my third week here, and I figured I should probably post something to share about my experience so far! My name is Juliet Millard and I am 21 years old. I’m going to be a senior at Grove City College this fall where I’ll be finishing my final year as a PreK-4 Elementary Education major and Spanish minor.
What am I doing here?
I applied to be a SAMS Bridger almost a year ago and had know idea where I would be placed or what I would be doing. All I knew is that I would prefer somewhere Spanish-speaking. Well, many months later, and here I am in Chile!! I am living with a very sweet host family in Temuco and commuting daily to the town, Chol Chol where I am helping at an Anglican school here. My days consist of time spent helping with the English classes and Religion Classes. I’m also teaching my own English class/workshop for 45 mins after school 3x a week!
What is God doing?
That’s a big question. But, God is doing a lot. There are some incredibly faithful people here that are doing amazing things for God’s kingdom. It´s encouraging to see how intentional many of the people I’ve met here are with their walks with God. I think the greatest way I’ve felt God’s presence so far though, has been through other people. I’m a very people-oriented person! I love spending time with other people and making new friends. However, my transition here in Chile has been pretty difficult for me. I was super nervous to travel down and I’m having a much harder time than I thought I would communicating (Chilean Spanish is quite the challenge!!), which has made it very difficult to make new friends and be a “people person.” But, God has been placing people along my path to help me every step of the way.
On my very first flight from Pittsburgh to Toronto, I ended up sitting next to a girl who was my age, from my city, and getting on the same connecting flight as I was in Toronto to Santiago! We ended up talking the whole flight and navigating our following connection together. I don’t know if I could have done it without her! (Shout out to Haley if you ever happen to see this!)
Then, when I landed in Santiago (where I was crazy nervous about figuring out my connection), out of nowhere this man saw me and helped me every. single. step. of the way through the airport. He helped me check in, go through security, and find my gate! It turns out we were headed to the same flight anyway, which made it easier for him to help me, but I didn’t know him, didn’t ask for his help, but he just saw me and knew I needed it. He wasn’t sketchy, had no malicious intent, and didn’t want anything from me. He simply wanted to help. Just because.
Here in Chile, I am very grateful for the people God has placed in my path too. I have a wonderful host family (who let me come home to them and cry after long confusing days where I feel like I only understand two percent of what people say to me) and mentor family (thank you Smith Family for always driving me everywhere and asking how I’m doing)! But, I’m especially grateful for the English teacher here, whom I’ve connected with. She’s only a few years older than me and so kind and helpful. Without her, this whole experience would be a million times harder. We speak in Spanish but she graciously lets me make a million mistakes, ask a million questions, and never gets mad or frustrated. She has shown me everything I need to know in terms of navigating the school here, and she too, has let me cry when I was overwhelmed with emotion and all that comes with being in a new place! (Thank you Fabiola for being so wonderful!!)
How can you pray?
First and foremost, please be praying for all of the teachers and students that I’m spending most of my time with here. Pray that the Lord will give the teachers all the patience and strength that they need each day, and that the students would have the desire and willingness to listen and learn.
Second, please just be praying for me as I continue to navigate this new experience – especially Chilean Spanish!! I have discovered I´m really not that great at Spanish… ha-ha! It makes everything a little harder when I have a really hard time understanding everything everyone says!
Thank you to everyone for all your support and I promise I’ll post more pictures once I figure out how!!
Dear Missions Family,
My family and I greet you all in the WONDERFUL name of JESUS CHRIST and are BELIEVING that God is doing a wonderful NEW THING in your life. Many people I know had a very difficult year. In many ways last year was quite literally a “storm year” for us. After serving for twenty years in Africa and later in Europe we were unable to secure visas to remain in Portugal. It was a difficult transition back to the United States with our two children but it has also been a blessing for so many reasons. Topping last years challenges was Hurricane Michael and all of its devastation for us and many others. However, this year God is definitely DOING A NEW THING in us and with our ministry TOGETHER! We are still recovering from the storm but we have seen God faithfully provide. We definitely serve a God who makes RIVERS flow out of DESERTS! He delights in making a WAY in the WILDERNESS!
The Lord has connected us to NEW PLACES and PARTNERSHIPS that are truly amazing. One of these new partners is the Society of Anglican Missionaries and Senders (SAMS). SAMS missionary heritage is truly awe inspiring and for those of you who know how our ministry has been welcomed across all denominational lines you will know how truly satisfying this is for me to be part of this Anglican missionary society. One of the first invitations we received as a “Missionary Bridger” has been Santiago, Chile through missionary Chris Feuillade. God willing, this April my daughter, Charity, will join me in Chile where I will be working for nearly a month doing evangelism. This will culminate with the painting of a large wall mural. As a working artist many of my paintings have been transformed into various products such as prints or coffee cups but this will be the first time I have taken one of my paintings to such a large scale.
Creating A Huge Point Of Contact/ Wall Mural
Why would you want to take a wall in Santiago and transform it? For me I think of this large outdoor painting being like Paul’s prayer cloth (Acts 19:11-12) except much bigger. The Book of Acts records that the Apostle Paul sent them to people with sickness and oppression and they were cured. My highest intention would be for my art to become like that in God’s hands. Through God’s grace, art has the power to change the onlooker and transform the room or space it occupies. I have been humbled and thankful each time someone has reported how, through experiencing the art, they had a great sense of PEACE. This is why I covet your prayers for this art project. I not only have to believe God for the finances to operate in Chile (scaffolding, supplies, airline tickets etc.) but I have to believe HIM for the TRANSFORMING MESSAGE. You and I are just messengers. HE is the MESSAGE.
I am asking YOU to help us with this project. It is not often you have the opportunity to create a landmark or a public work that has the power to inspire and transform a corner of our world. Think of it… YOU with US by God’s grace have the potential to take a graffiti bombed wall and so clearly share the message that Jesus Christ wants to touch and bless the lives of the Chilean people!
TOGETHER we are bringing HOPE, JOY, SMILES, and MIRACLES, in the name of Jesus. Write US TODAY! Let us know how to be praying for you and please consider sending your BEST love GIFT to meet this project’s budget and for us to be able to continue this vital soul saving ministry.
Your friends in Christ,—Joshua Ben King