Ripple Effect Ministry in Mexico

Ripple Effect Ministry in Mexico

I live in an impoverished area of Mexico, where many people live day-to-day without any kind of savings account.  With the event of the coronavirus, more and more people are losing their jobs and sources of income, making it difficult for them to have enough money to buy food. 

At the beginning of April, our Kids’ Bible Club team decided we needed to do something to reach out to the families of our weekly ministry.  When trying to determine which families were in the greatest need, the answer was that all of them were in need.  Through various donations, we were able to provide 42 families with basic food and household supplies.  We also included Bible story books, coloring pages, colored pencils, and other little goodies for the children.  Attached to the packages was a card with Psalm 62:8, “Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge”, and we told the families that this was a gift from our church.

One of the results of that initial delivery of food and supplies was that we asked for people’s phone numbers so that we could create a WhatsApp group of the children who usually attend our Saturday Kid’s Club.  This past month our team has worked to record videos of Bible songs, verses, and lessons to send out to these families each week, along with craft ideas as well.  We are encouraged to now be more in touch with whole families and to see many parents helping their children to have their own Kid’s Club at home.  Our prayer is that the Lord uses this time to reach not only the children with His love and Word, but that He also reaches their families.

Two weeks after our first delivery of food, our church vestry decided that it was time for the church to also put forth money to continue loving our community through another delivery of food and supplies, this time to 100 families.  We decided to give packages to each family in our church, regardless of need, to the families we had been able to bless the first time, and to a number of other needy families in the neighborhoods around our church.  On the attached card we stated that if the family didn’t need the items, to please pass them on to someone else who did need them, and thus we encouraged our congregation to be generous as well and continue shining Christ’s light to those around them.  Once again, everyone was greatly blessed to know that God loves them and was providing for them; one family hadn’t eaten all day because they didn’t have any food left in the house. 

This is a unique time in our world’s history and we as Christians have the responsibility and privilege to share Christ’s love and His message of salvation to those around us.  I am excited to see how the Lord uses these tangible examples of His and His Church’s care for people to draw them unto Himself.  We don’t know who is watching our online Sunday services, but our hope is that some of these families who have received the invitation to join us are doing so and are hearing the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Feeding the Mind, Body, & Soul in Ecuador

Feeding the Mind, Body, & Soul in Ecuador

SAMS is sharing missionary updates about ways ministry is adapting because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many missionaries are already called to areas of great need, and those needs are increasing in light of the pandemic. We invite you, as you are able, to provide these dioceses and communities resources through the SAMS World Relief Fund. More information is on our website.

[Video Transcript Below]

Starting in March, obviously, all of a sudden life changed drastically here in Ecuador, where the capital city of Quito – the entire nation – has been on lockdown. I think we’re on day 48 or 49. We have martial law from 2:00 PM until 5:00 AM. So you’re not allowed to step outside your door from those times – so the buses have stopped. Public transportation is stopped.

People are in desperate situations. People are being laid off, obviously, which means no income. But most of our students and their families are in – they were in desperate situations anyway. Their families are going out at night and going through trash to do recycling. And that’s how they make their money. They might make 100 or 200 dollars a month by going through other people’s trash to get out recycling, but with the martial law they can’t go do that. And they have they have no access to earning money and are in some really desperate and difficult places even more so.

The way E=H (Education = Hope) works is that we come alongside the church and we resource the church so that the church can take care of its people, [and] has the resources to take care of its people and they have their own … committee and they have their application process because they know who really needs help in their neighborhood and who is playing the system.

So it’s really an amazing system that God had set up from the beginning, using that same network to continue to walk with people.  But instead of just doing education now we’re doing a little bit more. As we have transitioned from development to relief – relief being that E=H funds are now available for groceries and for medicine, and of course for education – it’s the same system that’s working so perfectly because we are supporting the local priests and the pastors and they’re still connected to their community.

We have the incredible privilege of walking alongside them in relief. As we find the resources, we’re able to go buy 50 pound bags of rice, or two or three cases of oil, or lentils, or tuna, or fresh fruits and vegetables, toothpaste, disinfectants, soap, feminine products, diapers – those precious necessities that you don’t even really think about until you don’t have access to them and you can’t buy them. So we’re able to buy that in bulk and then we deliver it to the different ministry sites. Then they make packages for each family depending on the number of people in the family, depending what their families’ needs are. They’re able to then deliver the groceries or the supplies and do some pastoral care with social distancing with masks and, you know, talking to you from six feet way, but able to do some pastoral care and able to do discipleship along the way.

So they’re feeding the mind, the body, the soul, all of it together. I’ve gotten several texts from moms especially saying “thank you, you have no idea” – [pause] I get a little emotional – “You have not only fed us, but you’ve taken away my depression, my anxiety.”

SAMS Missionaries are offering practical help in the communities they’re called to during the COVID-19 pandemic. The World Relief Fund provides them the resources to keep sharing the gospel in practical ways.