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From the beginning to end of the month, there were many reasons to rejoice, even though we also encountered challenges that caused us to have to stretch our faith.  We began by stopping by the cottage and visiting the neighbors.  Dona Lupe has been bedridden now for several years but always receives us endearingly.  Her daughters informed us that a man from another village comes to minister to her and the family weekly and has led them all in the prayer to receive Christ (although Dona Lupe and a few others had prayed years ago.)  Since the church near them has closed and we cannot be there on a regular basis, we are thrilled that they are receiving regular spiritual attention.


From there we headed to Victoria for discipleship class where we learned that Brother Beto of our congregation in Mante is dealing with health issues for which we joined together and prayed.  Another sister testified of some wonderful things: Her brother is on chemotherapy and had threatened to commit suicide, but several people ministered to him and someone led him to Christ.  Now he sends his wife and kids to church.  The same sister told of having a dream in which she saw the dress of a lady who fell down in a store.  Then, in real life she saw her.  It was a lady of around 80 yrs. old.  Led by the Spirit, our sister prayed for her before she left work and rejoiced in the advance notice to pray for her and avoid whatever evil intentions that the enemy had planned for her.  


The service the next day in Victoria was glorious.  Just minutes before we began singing, a word was given to a sister who faces many challenges with her family to focus on “hope.”  Study it, find verses on it, and meditate on it.  The first song the praise and worship team led us in declared our hope in the Lord!  Jeanette ran back where the sister was seated to point it out to her, but she had already noticed the song specially picked by the Spirit for her and others dealing with situations.


The following weekend, Willy was joined by Carlos, Juan Antonio, and Herminio on a very quick trip to Guanajuato to minister in a men's conference.  They came back with wonderful testimonies and experiences.  While visiting the market, Juan Antonio and Herminio met a vendor who saw them and asked, “You're Christians, aren't you?”  She then proceeded to tell them of her condition of depression and of her husband having been an alcoholic but now attends church.  They asked her what church, and it turns out that it was the same church where they had been invited to minister.  They invited her to attend the regular meeting to be held the next day.  At first, she said no because she hadn't gone in years and she has her business at the market.  At that time, Carlos joined them as they prayed for her.  The next day, the men were delighted to see her in attendance!  And her sister, who had been invited by someone else and unaware that she would be there too, was also in attendance!  The two embraced, and the family rejoiced in the hand of God in all that He had done in bringing the family together.


During discipleship class in Victoria, Samuel gave thanks for a word from the Lord that someone had posted on the website which was exactly what he needed for a situation at work.  It brought him peace and encouragement, and within 3 hours he received a favorable answer to the problem.  Another brother also had a situation at work.  He had just read a pamphlet produced by the church on reconciliation which gave him assurance on how to respond in faith.  Within 3 days, a co-worker involved asked him to forgive her.  In yet another situation at work, a sister of the congregation was just getting off work when a co-worker frantically approached her to pray for 3 people who had been kidnapped.  Soon after praying, they were freed!


A word of the Lord went forth during the class for a new believer who has been dramatically delivered from so much.  She will have a powerful ministry of healing those who have no hope.  Unbeknownst to Jose who spoke that word, she has been attending to her ex-husband who is bedridden with several serious health conditions and recently asked her, “What has happened to you?!  He had seen her sick, oppressed, and walking with a can, but now is free and has joy.  She told him how God has changed her life and how she receives Word and encouragement from the Church.  She invited him, but so far has said no.


Interestingly, he has asked her to marry him again.  He is quite wealthy and, financially this would relieve her of a recent and very serious loss.  However, she said she would not consider marrying him again unless he, too, came to the faith as she knows that his current spiritual condition would interfere with her walk with the Lord.  She wants to see him healed so that he can be convinced of the real power of Jesus and turn to Him.  We are impressed that, despite her short time in the faith and the horrendous loss that she recently suffered, she values Christ and the Church more than her ex-husband's recent offer of marriage.


We arrived a day earlier the following week to visit Voz with Brother Juan Antonio.  What joy to be among the brothers and sisters in Christ in Voz!  They participated very well in the praise and worship service.  Then, while Jose shared the Word with the adults, Jeanette taught the children and found them very different from the “unchurched,” undisciplined children of a few years ago.  These kids enjoyed class and participated well.  They also showed understanding of the foundation of our faith.


After service, we enjoyed a meal they prepared for us.  During our conversations, Sister Socorro's daughter, who used to be one of the kids in our class and now has a child of her own, took out her cell phone and led us down memory lane, showing us pictures from way back that she had stored on her phone.  (She had taken pictures of the snap shots.)  Since she had never before been so talkative with us, we had no idea of how much those times had meant to her.


Another great sign of encouragement was seeing one sister go to a stash of pamphlets and pull some materials out to give to a visitor.  We had never seen her take initiative to share some Word with someone else.  It was also good to see that another sister had invited a lady who used to attend years ago—all great indications of personal growth in the members.


Jose turned to Juan Antonio and suggested that he return once a month to minister and support Isai and Karen.  Juan replied that he and his wife had already discussed that.  He also talked about teaching drums to Chuy, a 14-yr-old boy who has returned to the village after being away for several years.  There is such a calling on that boy's life!  We are glad for anything that will direct him towards it.


The next day we led the discipleship class in Victoria.  It was great to hear Pepe testify of how he and others have seen a change in him.  Before truly connecting with the Body of Christ, he used to sleep in on the weekends.  The very thought of getting up in time to attend a service at 10AM would have been unfathomable.  And even when our services were on Saturday nights, he used to arrive late to service purposely because he thought that it was more “practical” to just hear the Word.  Now the joy of attending and worshiping gets him up, eager to be with the brothers and sisters.  We praise God for what He has done in and through Pepe!  We also heard from some of the ladies that on the “chat” that they have everyone shares and declared words of faith and prays for one another.  And no one expresses desperate, faithless cries.


In the discipleship class we also learned of a lady, mother of a teen for whom the hospital team had prayed a year ago, who testified to them during their recent visit to the hospital that he is healed, attends a youth group, and she also attends church now.  They were only at the hospital this time for a check-up.  We are so very grateful for the team that visits the hospital and has affected countless lives, including the lives of those who participate in the team.  Many of the team members have developed their ministry gifts by participating.  Some who would never have spoken before a group or pray for the sick now do so with great enthusiasm.


The next day was Fathers' Day which we spent with our congregation in Mante.  Brother Raul drove us, and, as always, had testimonies to share.  On our way there, he told us that a sister had asked him and his family (his wife and 2 young sons) to go after service to her grove to pray for the trees and against a pest invasion that threatened to cause her great loss.  They went and, enduring extreme temperatures and humidity, prayed for each tree and then enjoyed a meal together.  Later she told him that she sold 8 tons of oranges!  Only 3 buckets of the harvest had been damaged and rejected!


When Raul saw that they could lay hands on their cat that had been accidentally run over and had several fractures, and see results, (which the vet called a miracle), he knew they could surely pray for some trees.  It was a great experience for them all, and we are so glad that his sons were involved in it.  They are destined for something very special in the Kingdom of God.


The congregation in Mante is doing well.  We enjoyed a special fellowship of brunch before the service to honor the fathers.  During our conversations, we rejoiced in lots of good news, including the recent salvation of the brother of one of the members who attends church in Victoria but is from Mante and occasionally visits that church when in town.  Also, a sister who used to enter in a decrepit condition now entered with a most definite spring in her step.  What a contrast!  She has overcome arthritis diabetes, and cancer. 


Following the service, we stopped by Brother Beto's house to pray for him.  It was at his home where we had held services for a few years before the Lord provided the current building.  It was such a special feeling to be back where we once saw the congregation in its infancy.  It is quite a testimony of perseverance!


Afterward, we went back to Victoria to pick up our vehicle and head for home after having had the blessing of visiting 3 of the 4 congregations in one weekend!  Herminio and Manny ministered in Rio Bravo and returned with good reports, as well.  Nayeli had survived a terrible car accident with only minor injuries.  She usually leads the praise and worship, but as she was recovering, Josue and Kiara led and flowed very well.  The anointing was “really heavy,” and Dona Maria then shared a “powerful word” on taking communion.


In the discipleship class of the next week, we heard about a couple of young ladies who were chatting at a cafe with Luz and Rocio.  They had met one of them about a year and a half ago when the team was ministering at the hospital.  She and the other lady expressed having felt something special when the team passed by, and even got “goose bumps.”  They looked at each other and asked, “Did you feel that?”  One of them, who was away from her faith and whose parents are Christians, recognized what it was.  Soon after, she began attending our services, to the delight of her parents who live in another state.  The other only recently attended for the first time.  Before going, she asked how long the “mass” lasted.  When they told her it would be about 2 hours, she expected a tortuous time of boredom.  However, the day she went she lost complete track of time as Brother Raul shared the Word.  During the praise and worship, she asked when the service would begin.  They told her that it had already begun.  She said, “This is a party!”  Yes!  Every service that lifts up the name of Jesus and where people rejoice in their new life in Him is truly a party!


On Sunday, while Jose and Jeanette ministered in Victoria, Pepe took Isai and Karen of Voz with him to minister in Mante.  Together they prayed for Brother Beto.  He's doing better, praise God.


During the service in Victoria, we learned that the son of one of our members is in a gang, having followed in his dad's footsteps.  He recently came to visit his dad and attended service.  Noticing the great change in him, he asked his dad why he doesn't drink anymore.  His dad said, “I no longer need it.  And I would much prefer to buy my family a nice meal than waste it on alcohol.”  The son told him that when he returns home he would attend a Christian church there.  We expect his whole family to enter the faith!


Also during a conversation, we rejoiced in learning that the suicidal young mother who was recently led to the Lord is living completely set free.  Please keep her in prayer as she hasn't returned to service due to having to work and support her family now that her husband has left her.  She is however, receiving spiritual attention from the ones who took her to church that day.


A couple visiting for the first time thanked us profusely for the wonderful service (of course, God is the One to be thanked!)  The wife embraced Jeanette and said, “I am trembling with joy!”  They have returned a second Sunday and told us they would return after a trip out of town.


The last weekend of the month was both delightful and difficult.  The congregation in Victoria held their second monthly special meeting with the youth.  There were about 20 teens present, some of them new, and they all enjoyed the time together and received the Word for which we are so very grateful.  That same night, we received word that Don Enrique, a very faithful member of our congregation in Rio Bravo, passed away due to cancer.  We had only recently learned of the illness.  In addition to this situation, our attention was on some other challenges that only a week earlier presented themselves but were necessary to take care of quickly in Victoria.  We prayed about where to go and when, as we really wanted to be there for the congregation in Rio Bravo, yet we also knew we needed to be in Victoria.  Praise God for His guidance and peace through it all.  Saturday morning we went to the funeral home to minister to the family, some of whom are not yet believers.  We were glad to find them receptive.  After ministering and praying with them, peace entered the atmosphere.  Then, before leaving, we also prayed with Dona Maria, our leader in Rio Bravo, who was recently diagnosed with a heart condition.  We would greatly appreciate you joining your faith with ours for complete healing and long life for her.


As we were there, Rocio and Luz, along with some other sisters went to the village of Voz for the monthly ladies' meeting that went very well. 


Upon our arrival in Victoria, we found that the water shortage in the city had affected our compound, including for the first time our apartment.  Thankfully, the water was restored to the apartment, but Don Chuy, the watchman, was concerned about the rest of the property and doubted there would be enough water to baptize in the small pool as planned the next day.  We told him by faith there would be, and to his surprise, there was!  He called it a miracle.


Eric and Lucero led the monthly marriage class that Saturday evening in Victoria.  We were able to be there for most of it, but then slipped out for a meeting to address the pending pressing issues.  We give God praise for His guidance and love which were proportioned to all involved and brought about a very good outcome.


After the meeting, a sister who had recalled a word spoken over her and her fiance that the Lord would take them further than they could imagine told us that both of them have just been promoted to head of their departments in the same company—this is great timing for them as they are just months from getting married!


Willy and Omar drove to Rio Bravo from Edinburg to minister at the funeral on Sunday.  The Lord arranged everything so well!  Originally, the service and burial were to be held on Saturday, but plans changed, making it possible for Willy and Omar to go.  Our hearts were comforted in knowing that they would be there to flow in the anointing for the family and the congregation.


While David and Juan Antonio ministered in Mante on the last Sunday of the month, we stayed in Victoria and enjoyed another marvelous service that concluded with an altar call to pray for anyone who was dealing with heart wounds of their fathers to which countless numbers of people responded, followed by the glorious water baptisms of 7 people.  Four people had originally signed up, but 3 more asked to join them.  Knowing the personal stories and miraculous testimonies of each one, it was our complete joy to be present for it.  One of them, practically dragged to church by his wife over a year ago, seemed too hardened to believe.   But he was recently over-heard testifying to a visitor in the men's meeting of how, once he stopped trying to reason everything out with his natural brain and just receive by faith God's grace, then he was able to receive it all.  WOW!


The youngest to be baptized was a 10-yr-old girl whose family has been with the ministry almost since its inception.  She was the 3rd generation of her family to be baptized by this ministry!  Once we started thinking about it, we could recall 3 other families of the church that have had this honor.


In the meeting, someone passed us a note giving God praise for the healing of a lady with heart problems who returned for more tests and was found with no arterial blockage and no need for the planned invasive procedure.  Hallelujah!


The Lord has done so many great things!  Though our hearts have been a little heavy from dealing with trying situations, we always return home rejoicing for His great hand performing wonders through His Body.


We are looking forward to some really great things ahead which we will be very glad to tell you about very soon.  Until, then, thanks so much for your kind words of encouragement, your prayers, and your support in so many ways.


Yours in Christ, 

Jose, Jeanette, and the missions team


“As His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue (II Pet. 1:3)”


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