The morning began with a word of encouragement from Donald… In other words there was screaming and banging, but the team was up and ready to go. Garret and Yoshi gave us real encouragement out of Philippians 2. Emily, Angela, Brandon, and Seth journeyed to the radio station to give their testimonies where they were joined by Kyle, Jordan, Jamie, Yoshi, and Domingo. The team dispersed across the plains of Somotillo with a group staying around the Casa to help build the Casa de Donald while the rest of the group ventured to Pascuala to help pour concrete and engage the community. In the afternoon, the team trekked to the village of La Flor to engage with the community there. We cooked a hot meal while the team played soccer, painted finger nails, and jumped rope. Phil Williams get’s a special shout out for replacing his eyeball with a soccer ball. Before we passed out the meal, members of the team performed a rap about Jesus feeding the five thousand. Afterwords, Brent gave a message from John 6 about Jesus being the bread of life. Garrett led the village in a call for salvation, and then the village ate. The village responded really well to our visit, and they chased us for miles down the road in hopes of clothing and candy. Being the saint that he is, Senor Donald surprised the team with ice cream providing everyone’s “God Moment” for the day. We came back to the Casa in the afternoon, and the team enjoyed fellowship through song, and block building with Mama Maria’s daughter, Mae. The team is still motivated and ready to go for another day out on the mission field.
Good Afternoon from Casa de Shelly!
We had a very productive day today. We began the day by going to the Radio Station Principe de Paz. At the radio station Justin, Amy, Parker and Jordan D. shared their testimonies and Domingo (one of our translators), Kyle, Jordan S. and Jaime sang a worship song for the listeners. Last night Donald told us that the radio station is reaching even further and so there is a good chance that this morning was the first time some Central Americans were able to hear the gospel! Throughout the time at the radio, the rest of the team was listening to the broadcast and praying for those sharing as well as those who were listening. After we went to the radio station, we all loaded up and got a LOT of sand from the riverbed. It was extremely hot and a lot of hard work. The sand we were getting we are going to use tomorrow in Pascuala to make cement for the foundation of the house we are building. Once we were done at the riverbed, we started to head down the road and we noticed a huge bee hive. Because of this we had the opportunity to walk down the river over to the ministries property. Once we got to Casa de Shelly from our walk we jumped back in the trucks and headed to Pascuala to unload the sand and play with the kids. All of the kids were very exited when we arrived and we quickly began playing games with them. Because all we were doing in Pascuala today was unloading the sand, it was a very short trip. We traveled back to Casa de Shelly and worked on some different projects around the property such as painting, getting more sand and laying brick. Lunch was delicious and included some of our American favorites: cheese (chicken) burgers and fries! After lunch we headed out to a village named San Francisco. On the way we threw out candy on the side of the road, it’s amazing how excited the people get even over a simple piece of candy. We arrived at the village and immediately began playing with the kids and socializing. Most of the guys went out and played soccer while the girls went in the ministry home and played jump rope, painted nails, and many had the opportunity to share the gospel in small groups. Many of the children in the village were able to pray to ask Jesus into their hearts for the first time. We then were able to hand out chicken soup that some of the team had made to the villagers. The lines were very long and we almost ran out of food, but God provided! We were able to bless many malnourished children, mom’s and dad’s with the food we brought. After leaving the village we threw out clothes, shoes and more candy to all the people lining the roads. On the way back, Donald surprised us all with ice cream at a local shop. It was very delicious! In a little while we will have dinner and get to bed early to begin another amazing day of ministry tomorrow.
Continued prayers and support are always appreciated!
From our Casa to yours,
With appropriate warning from Donald, the day was exactly like he warned us to be, starting with a lovely 0600 wake up call of knocking doors and yelling. Kyle and Parker lead an inspiring devotional out of the first half of Philippians 1. They spoke a lot about what it means to be persecuted and how we need to develop and show how committed we are to God and our faith in Him. After an outstanding breakfast from Momma Maria, the first group left for the radio station. Brent, Sarah, Phil, and Garrett shared their testimonies and Kyle, Jamie, and Jordan lead a few songs of worship. Words of encouragement were broadcasted through multiple nations to bring inspiration to millions. Their words were encouraging also to the team, their transparency brought us closer together as a group. After the group at the radio station came back, we headed out to Pascuala to work on the thirtieth house built by Because We Care Ministries in that village. We were welcomed by smiling faces and squeals from joyous children. The group then proceeded to dig the ditch for the footing of a house for one of the villagers. While digging the team engaged in various activities including soccer and fingernail painting with the children of the village. After completing the digging in a couple hours in the dry heat of Nicaragua, the footing ditch was finished. Then it was back to Casa De Shelly, to be filled with nutritious vittles, compliments of Momma Maria. Next we headed off to the village of Jinocuajo. At Jinocuajo, the team split up into two different teams, some of the guys played a couple of pick up games of soccer with the boys of the village while the girls and a few of the guys played with the kids at the local church, including leap-frog, coloring books, jump rope, and fingernail painting. After about an hour, we all joined up at the church and Donald told the people the story of God’s love for all people in the form of his son Jesus, who takes away their sins through faith. After this the team distributed a cauldron of soup to the villagers which will sustain them for a day then gave out packets of rice to the mothers for the next couple days. On the return the group threw out of the truck candy and clothing items to people who live on the road. This concluded the days work. Which leads to this very point where I am writing to you! Grace and Peace!
After many years of merely observing the work of Dr. Donald and Pam Gillette and Because We Care Ministries, my husband Steve and I finally felt God’s call to accompany them on a trip to Nicaragua just a few months ago. Like so many others, I thought I knew what it meant to be a missionary in a foreign country but I soon found out that my ideals were far from reality.
While we were there, we witnessed the absolute epitome of poverty as we had never seen it before. We were astounded at how the most basic human needs such as food, water, shelter and clothing are well outside of the reach of many Nicaraguans on a daily basis. Day after day, we worked alongside Donald and Pam distributing food, clothing and most importantly, sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Jesus made it very clear to us all in Matthew 28:19 when he said “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost”. Certainly, not everyone is called by God to literally “go” but we are all called to do something in support of this Commission. Since we have been back in the United States, Steve and I have been working with our local church to raise funds to build a house for a family in one of the villages that we visited.
Clearly, Because We Care Ministries could not reach the people of Nicaragua at the levels they do without the financial support of others. For many years, donations from folks just like you and me have funded mission teams, housing projects, food, and medical care for the people of Nicaragua who live a life that many people cannot even imagine. The Bible tells us that “God shall supply all your needs according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19) and for many years, we have seen that evidenced over and over again on behalf of this ministry.
As Steve and I prepare to return to Nicaragua in a few weeks, I am praying fervently for the Gillettes and their mission there. You see, several years ago, Donald and Pam both left their careers behind to minister to the people of Nicaragua full time. What a testament to their faith and obedience! Certainly, theirs is not an easy life but so very rewarding. For those of us who haven’t been called to the mission field full time, I believe that our financial support of this couple and their ministry is another way that we can be obedient when Jesus says “go”.
Beaver Creek Church of the Brethren
Paula, my wife, and I have made a total of twenty trips to Nicaragua with BWCM and Dr. Donald and Pam Gillette. Like most of you that are reading this, you know that if we go, as we are told “to go” with an open mind and heart we will be changed. You also know the needs that exist in Nicaragua. . . food, water, clothing, shelter and the list goes on, not to mention the need to “proclaim the Gospel.” As you well know, Donald has no qualms about asking for support for the works of the ministry, but he is hesitant to ask for support for Pam and himself. I am asking on their behalf, that we stay behind this team and their mission. About two years ago they both left their secular jobs to devote their full efforts to this ministry. This of course was a leap of faith. With the ever increasing cost of everything the Gillettes need some monthly support. Since opening Casa de Shelly in January 2005 I estimate that at least two thousand people have stayed and served at the Casa. If just ten percent of these folk could and/or would commit to just twenty dollars ($20.00) a month that would relieve the burden from the Gillettes on how to continue and let them focus on the work at hand. In closing I would like to quote James from the Bible (I love James) James 2:15-16 NRSV “If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them ‘Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,’ and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that?”. So if we say to Donald and Pam “good work, keep it up” but don’t offer, give our support, ‘what good is it’.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and please give it your prayerful consideration.
Kim T. Edwards
Bethany United Methodist Church
West Jefferson, North Carolina
1 Peter 4:19
English Standard Version (ESV)
19 Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.
After a little more than 12 years serving here in Nicaragua one VERY important lesson that both Pam and I have learned is a complete dependency on Holy God. Another key lesson we have learned is "be careful " what you ask for. In January 2012 we ask GOD to stretch our tent, basically asking God to use us in a greater way here in Nicaragua for HIS glory. I stand amazed at the many doors that GOD has opened and the number of people that HE has brought into our lives.
Since early November we have been able to share with more than 300 Pastors in both Nicaragua and Honduras. Our leadership training will expand into Costa Rica beginning in May. With each passing day the demands for "teaching" and "training" continues to grow. The first question ask in Duyure Honduras yesterday was, "When are you coming Back." We have truly seen the desire of these Godly men and women to grow and become better and more effective leaders for Christ. Along with this growth in number comes a GREATER demand on BWCM for supplies and food for those that are attending class. On a day when these men would be in the fields working to provide for their families they are now in class. We try to provide food for them to take when it is available to make their day a little easier. We truly thank those that have helped in purchasing books and supplies.
Our mission here has not changed, it has only expanded. I’m working to fill my extra time in country with the training center (farm) and pastor/leader training. Our plan is to continue to grow in each area as GOD provides. Today we are continuing to reach out for more teams to share in the work. We are looking for new contacts (churches) that has a desire to do missions. If you have family or friends in other churches that would like to see and hear about our work please ask them to contact me.
With all this said I need to make a personnel appeal. Over the past 18 months we have seen a continual erosion of our monthly support. I have learned over the past 12 years that there can be any number of reasons and it doesn’t really matter. I realize with the state of the economy and many other factors that it is increasingly more difficult for folks to give. We need very urgently to find at least 30, $100 a month contributors. We are asking churches as well as individuals to help us by increasing your giving or start giving. If it’s only $10.00 a month, praise GOD. Pam and I are just asking for your help over and beyond what you do in your local church. If you are unable to give we truly understand but please don’t stop praying for us. We are Trusting GOD in a might way. I have been teaching our pastors that where GOD leads God provides and I believe that with all my heart.
PO Box 14132
Roanoke, VA. 24038
“I raise my eyes towards the mountains. Where will my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.” (Psalm 121-1-2 CEB)
Our Nica News includes both Friday and Saturday as yesterday was a full day. We started Friday at the radio station with Barbara and Becky giving their testimony and Owen presenting a message. We returned to Pascuala to paint another house and to clean trash along with the villagers of the main street. After lunch, we went to Santa Teresa where we engaged with the villages, fixed them a meal, and distributed Manna Fest bags. Once we returned to the Casa, we traveled to Corinto on the coast to watch the sun set into the Pacific.
Today we slept in a little later and then went to the village of El Portillo in the mountains. We held a worship service where Owen preached and Donald brought the invitation and called for a decision to follow Jesus. The children had “Crafts with Carla” and the interpreters engaged the children in song. We left food to be distributed by the pastor. This afternoon we traveled to San Francisco where we once again engaged with the villagers, prepared a meal, and distributed food.
Before we close, we would like to say something about the age of our group. Eight of us came from North Carolina and East Tennessee. We range in age from 60 to 73. We are telling you this because we want you to know that age does not matter in this ministry. There has been much for us to do, and we have managed the tasks handily. God can use all of us to meet needs both at home and in Nicaragua.