December Ministry Update

Merry Christmas!

Hello and Merry Christmas from Guatemala! This Christmas season Yuliza and I are so excited to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary! The time has both flown by and also feels like it was long ago that I watched her walk down the aisle. We’re so blessed to be together, and it’s always amazing to think back through the years about how faithful and good God has been with us.

Celia Graduated from High School

Our girl Celia graduated from high school in October. We’re so proud of her for her accomplishment. She’s been with us longer than any other kids, and we know how many obstacles she’s had to overcome in order to make it to this point in her life. We first met her as a child at Casa Shalom where she lived for two years. After her family received custody of her again, we maintained communication with her and her family. After elementary school, there were no opportunities for further education in her home village, and we received her parents’ permission to have her come live with us for these past six years. She’s the first one in her family to finish high school, and she graduated with a degree as a preschool teacher. Please pray for Celia as she searches for her first job, and pray that she seeks the Lord’s will for her life.

Christmas Parties!

We have a tradition of throwing Christmas parties every year with the various groups that we work with, and this year was no different with three parties in all. The first was with our Monday night Bible study group where we enjoyed a bonfire, marshmallows, pizza, songs & a movie together. The next one was with all the shoe shiners, poor and needy which we held in our town’s central park. We served 150 traditional Guatemalan tamales, shared the great news of what Jesus has done for us, let the kids jump in some bounce houses, and gave away some clothes. Finally, we went to Casa Shalom where we had a big pizza party and games.

The most amazing thing to me was that we always ask for help in order to do these parties because the cost can be high to feed this many people. Well, 100% of the money came from Guatemalans, and of that, 70% came from kids who have lived with us! We were so blessed by the outpouring of help and love. We were able to give 120 pizzas, 150 tamales, ice cream, drinks, chips & marshmallows. And the best part is that it gave us the opportunity to share God’s love and good news to so many people!

There are lots more pictures & videos on the Facebook page of our group of friends who serve together with us:

Margaret & Isabella

Isabella is a very active and curious 8 month old baby. She always wants to try new foods and is constantly watching and wants to do whatever her older sister is doing. Margaret is an amazing big sister, and is such a sweet girl. She just turned 7 in November.

One of my concerns as we planned starting a family was knowing that there could be some disapproval from our children about the lifestyle and ministry that Yuliza and I have chosen. Our lives can be busy, and they have to share their parents with other kids. And there could be a lot of confusion as they travel back and forth between Guatemala and the United States and experience such different cultures.

Margaret is now getting to the age where she’s really analyzing everything and has lots of questions. Last month we were visiting my parents and one afternoon she said, “Daddy, why did you decide to go to Guatemala?” And we talked about the heart that God has given me to help children in need and how that led me here. It’s fascinating to see her analyzing everything. I see her enjoying all the playgrounds, restaurants and toys in the United States, and she loves them all. And I also see her happy and content that we’re able to help other kids here in Guatemala to have a family. It’s very exciting to see her grow up, and see her loving heart. I would appreciate your prayers for her and Isabella, that they would have our heart to help others and share God’s love with other kids!

Thank You!

Thank you for your continued prayers and support for us!
We’re so grateful for God’s goodness and for all of your help. We’re so blessed to be able to serve the poor, lost, and less fortunate here in Guatemala. As we reflect over all the years that we’ve been here, we’re so grateful for the continued support. It’s a rare privilege to be able to do what we do. Thank you so much!

Here are a few prayer requests for us:

  • Pray for Yuliza’s immigration status in the United States. We’ve run into some difficulties, and we’re still waiting for an answer from the immigration office.
  • Pray for Margaret & Isabella as they grow up in two very different cultures
  • Pray for our girls: Sandra, Ana and Karla, as the new school year starts in January. Pray for Celia as she looks for a job after graduation.
  • Pray for the kids that will come to live with us this next year. We are talking to some about coming to live with us, and we want to find the right kids who will take advantage of the opportunity that we’re offering.
  • Pray for our Monday night meetings, that we would be able to reach new shoe shiners, alcoholics & poor who need to know the Lord. Pray that our meetings would be a great time of reconciliation, growth, and following after our Heavenly Father!

Thank you so much and God bless,
Brent, Yuliza, Margaret & Isabella