(Corn Island Seventh Day Baptist Ministry Update)
The beginning of 2015 I boldly declared that I was going to walk solely by faith and allow God to pour out His unlimited blessing on me.
As the year progressed I find myself very busy with my job and was not able to do as much as I had intended to do. It was a balancing act trying to keep up with all the engagements of my job, while serving as president for the pastoral council and ministering to two groups, one at my home and one in an impoverish area of the island.
I want to interject here before continuing with this ministry report a little about my job to give you an insight as to the nature of the same. I am employ by an NGO in a program Education for Success which is a personal development program for children, adolescents and youth from 10 to 29 living in at-risk situations. The program provides school supplies and uniforms to those that are selected based on a risk factor assessment tool. The program monitor these students and provides tutoring, counseling, life skills training, monitoring, etc.; we also work with the parents through Good Parenting sessions and with teachers through Social and Emotional training. We had 121 students in the program this year in Corn Island. I do a lot a traveling for work sessions, training, work with consultants that write the protocols for the different components of the program, etc.
As the year progressed we had some disappointments. The owner of the house that we rented to hold the children ministry in the other area of the island needed their house and we did not have any place to meet. We are still in the process of securing a place; the problem is there is really no place available. We identified a small lot and have the authorization from the mayor to build on it. We have not proceeded as yet because we are looking into another option. At any rate when 2016 rolls in God’s willing we must make a decision because the children are getting desperate because they missed the singing and Bible stories.
The Great News!!!!!
Around the mid of November the Lord led me to a piece of land just up the road from where I am living and to date we have been able to purchase a 50 x 100 feet lot cash ($8,000.00). This was possible thanks to the contributions from churches and individuals from the USA and my husband and my tithes and offerings.
There is two more lots 50 x100 feet each available and the Lord has convinced the owners to allow us to pay for them in installments. Our awesome God also touched their hearts and they have donated half of the second lot, we only have to pay for one and half lot which totals $12,000.00 (twelve thousand dollars). This means that once we are finished with the payment the ministry will own a 150 x 100 feet of land to build a SDB center here in Corn Island.
For you to understand why this is such an awesome miracle is that at present we don’t have a congregation, there is only a few of us adults ministering to a host of children. Apart from our tithes, two other persons tithe an average of $30.00 per month when they are working. The average weekly offering is the equivalent of $3.00 (three dollars) per week.
In spite of this, we have been able to do the following:
- Every week up until recently we provided 100 refreshments for the two groups. Right now we are only working with one group so the amount of refreshments are less.
- We provide care packages for the needy elderly people from the community.
- We provide aid for emergencies when someone has to travel to Bluefields for doctor care and don’t have funds to get their fare.
We have purchased:
- 9 folding tables (6’ each).
- Four ceiling fans and two standing fans (yes it is very hot over here)
- A Wi-Fi ready printer because every week we have printed take home materials for the children so they can share with their family the lessons they are learning.
- A LCD projector that allows them to watch and learn worships songs through worship videos with lyrics.
- 34 Plastics chairs, 12 plastics stools, 4 long benches, a pulpit, a communion table and cabinet for Bibles and other materials.
- A portable rechargeable sound system that is super handy when the electric power is out which happens often.
Just wanted you to know that we are doing our best to be good stewards of what God provides.
How is God going to provide the funds to finish paying off the land and to build? I don’t know. He is the unlimited God and I endeavor to walk by faith. Is it easy? Not, however, I must trust Him to provide.
I am so grateful to God for my husband who has been by my side every step of the way in all these ministries endeavors. He continually talks to people about the ministry and on and off they respond by donating funds for refreshments.
Finally I want to invite on a journey so you can picture what I have seen in regard to this center. It will have a main worship area which will also be used for other activities. We want to build dorms for boys and girls for camp, retreat but most of all to have a place for abuse children during the transition period from the abusive family to another one. We definitely will need a kitchen to feed those in need or during events with a fellowship area and then class rooms and a special prayer room.
I really want to thank all those who have been contributing to this ministry, you know who you are and hopefully soon I can thank each individual church and person. I also want to thank those who around the world that are holding us up in prayer. I ask for your prayers as we continue to seek God for directions to build a place to meet and worship Him.
Note: The land is about 1 ½ city blocks off the main road, ideal for the children to play without danger.
– In the Master’s Service, Shirley Antonio Morgan