Many of our weekends are dedicated to the visiting our student's communities of faith. During our time here in Nicaragua we have made this a priority not only because we have enjoyed doing so, but because we have felt that these visits have benefited ourselves and our students mutually. Through these opportunities we have come to better understand the needs of our students and their churches and therefore have been able to focus our classes in-order to address the issues we have seen.
These visits also give us an opportunity to connect with our students in real and meaningful ways outside of the classroom. There is nothing like joining a student in his or her home for the preparation of a meal or the usage of their latrine that helps them understand that we are seeking to understand, that we are attempting to live and work in solidarity with them. No longer are we two "gringos" that give class at the seminary. Instead, we are seen more as two people who are passionate about their lives, the live of their church; two people who know how to cook Nica style and who drink water that comes from the tap.
In the past few months, we visited ten of our students in their church and home. We have heard some pretty meaningful messages, interacted with congregations and heard stories about our students and histories. We have also had some wonderful meals (which were augmented by some of the best cheeses Nica has to offer as we visited students in the dairy country of Camoapa and Juigalpa. We want to share with you the reader, some photos to better capture and explain where we have been and what we have been up to through the making of these visits.
David and Noehmi work together pastoring a Baptist congregation outside of the rural town of Camoapa. They have worked together fostering a small community that continues to thrive as it seeks to meet the growing needs of the community springing up around the church. Already they have helped install a water well as they seek to meet the spiritual and physical needs of their community.
Abel has worked to develop a ministry in the city of Juigalpa. Instead of inviting people to come to a church outside of their own community, he decided to build a church in an area that would be most useful for the community. He now is working in conjunction with some of our other students to minster to some of the people who are most in need in the city of Juigalpa.
Wil spent a considerable amount of time in the U.S. learning English and developing skills helpful for his ministry. Currently, Wil is working to pastor a rural community located in and around a sugar cane field. The people originally moved here in-order to work during harvest and decided to stay in-order to be hired for the harvest each year. The community lacks services and has many needs; we were saddened by their living conditions, but also excited to better know how to support Wil in his work.
We hope that you enjoyed this glimpse into the lives of our students!