Lots of festivities, joy, and fellowship this month! For our first trip in for the month, we drove straight to Voz for their Christmas service and party. The praise and worship team consisting of Isai, Karen, and Julio (a recent addition to the team, on the drums) played very well together. An answer to our prayers, Julio is also learning to play the guitar and the bass. After the service and taking communion together, we enjoyed a delicious meal of mole (chicken in a special sauce), chicken and vegetables in achote (special seasonings), nopales (cactus), and rice, followed by the kids taking turns whacking at a pinata and then everyone receiving a candy bag. There were also several opportunities to minister one-on-one and give New Testaments to many in attendance who had no Bible. Everyone was urged to spend time every day reading the Word in order to grow and gain wisdom. Then a wayward young man pulled up to pick up his “wife” after the party, and we had a chance to speak with him and let him know that we love him and remind him of all that God did in him years ago and desires to continue to do in him. There are no lost causes for God!


Following a good night's sleep at the cottage, we headed to Mante to celebrate Christmas with our brothers and sisters there. The praise and worship was better than ever, and, after some Word shared by Jose and taking communion together, we all sat down for another delightful meal. Later, we were directed to the children's room and found it completely done with tile on the floor, windows and doors installed, and walls painted. With all the final touches, the room looked so big. Our hearts rejoiced at what we saw, and we spontaneously burst out in praise and prayer over the room, dedicating it to touch the lives of countless children for Christ. The teacher told Jeanette that during the class that day, all twelve children in attendance, lifting their voices loudly and fervently, prayed together to receive Christ.


During a conversation, we were amused and “tickled” by the testimonies of two lawyers who said they used to frequent a particular cantina before they got saved. When the bartender learned what happened to them, he went with them to church and accepted Christ, too.


Also during our visit, we were asked to pray for an elderly lady named Juana Enriques who was having problems with her lungs which caused her back pain and weakness. Please continue to pray for her and declare life over her until we receive an update on her condition.


From Mante, we drove to Victoria where we spent the night. Before heading back home across the border, we were so thrilled that the leaders (three couples) in Victoria made time in their busy schedules to meet with us for breakfast. We discussed the church, plans for the Christmas party, as well as services for the rest of the month.


The following weekend, we enjoyed a Christmas party with the discipleship class. Ruben and Brenda felt led to bless the group with pozole (a delicious dish of hominy, pork, spices, and lots of garnishes), and others pitched in with drinks and other foods for the feast, including a birthday cake for one of the members, as well. While we were there, Rodolfo and Lupita were treating the members in Voz with a meal of traditional tamales to continue the celebration from the week before.


The Christmas party with the congregation in Victoria was also quite joyful. After the message and communion, we had the joy of presenting to the Lord and the congregation a CD recorded by the praise and worship team with the theme of healing. Between the anointed songs, scriptures on the subject were read by Rodrigo, one of the members with a commanding voice. Every family received a copy of the CD, and more will be available to minister to those in need as the Lord leads. We expect this CD to minister healing to everyone who listens to it.


During the meal, the second praise and worship team (a group of beginners assembled and practiced together since about the beginning of the year) made their amazing debut. To everyone's delight, several members of the “secondary team” are on track to be available to substitute or enhance the “primary team.”


As another highlight of the celebration, the youth group performed a cute Christmas skit with the message of the Gospel woven in the original story line written by David, the group's leader and directed by Sandra, our member who works in the department of Fine Arts in Victoria. Later, the children were recipients of a pinata and candies sent by Elizabeth, who lives in Pharr, Tx, and is relative of a family in Victoria. The whole service and fellowship was nothing short of glorious.


Toys were also collected that day and later distributed in poor neighborhoods organized by Vicky and Roberto and others who joined them. After sending out the word to just a handful of people in the neighborhood, a crowd quickly gathered, and Carlos shared the Word with the people before the group distributed toys to about 100 children.


From the celebration in Victoria, we headed straight for another one in Rio Bravo to be held in the new, yet not quite finished, building to celebrate with our brothers and sisters there. To our delight, there were several visitors and new people in attendance. The service was wonderful, and there was an abundance of food—so much that we literally could not carry all the left-overs that our hosts insisted on sending us home with!


Dona Maria, who just a few months ago became a widow when her husband Don Tino went to be with the Lord, is doing very well. The spark of joy is back in her eyes. During our conversation with her, we were thrilled to hear that she is very busy visiting hospitals and praying for the sick, and recently led six people to Christ. We also rejoiced with her for the seventy chairs that the congregation recently received from World Harvest Family Church. They will most definitely come in handy as the church is already in the process of growing since they moved into the new building.


Following the festivities in Rio Bravo, we headed back to the U.S., not to return until the New Year in order to spend time with family, including our brothers and sisters in Christ of WHTC, leaving the congregations in Mexico in very capable hands.


2015 is at hand, and we are already beginning to see the Lord unfolding His wondrous plans both in our hearts and before our very eyes. We will be sure to keep you informed of all the great things He has done and will do for His glory and the furthering of His Kingdom. Until then, be blessed and have a very happy, prosperous New Year!


With love in Christ, Jose, Jeanette, and the rest of the Missions Team


You crown the year with Your goodness, and Your paths drip with abundance.” Ps. 65:11

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