Dear Partners, Friends and Family, January 2018
Christmas…, really not over yet here in Spain, not till we eat the “Roscon” on Kings Day morning… https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosca_de_reyes
As always, it has been a month filled with excitement. We started with singing carols in the Hospital, then our Christmas ICA Lunch, carols in the sea front, a united Christmas service hosted by the Dutch church with a meal included for the English church and the Spanish church, more carols in the local Mall with the Restrepo girls as special music, our ICA carol service and the Christmas Day service… and the Kings Day gift distribution to Gypsy children in the community. In Spain, Christmas is officially over on the 7th of January.
I can write all of this in just a few lines but most of you know that the preparation started long ago and the execution seemed as if it were never going to end and all the time we were having fun.
Thank you for all the Christmas wishes we have received from so MANY of YOU. We miss home and family during these days but we also love serving here, where God has placed us.
Two of the girls came this year, Jesica, from Malaysia, and Felicia, from Florida…the two who live in the 80º+ weather. So, they complained all of the time that it was cold! 60º weather, really? Loved having them, miss the rest dearly.
We want to wish you all a joyous New Year and the continual grace of God to dwell richly in you this 2018.
With all our love,
Rafael and Mary
Dear Praying Partners, December 2017
Happy Winter! Well, at least that is how we feel here in Torrevieja, Spain.
The weather has literally gone south and we are freezing… OK compared to some of you, you might think we are exaggerating, but the houses here just are not built for winter, so yes… burr
October had its challenges and victories as always. Please pray for Rocio. This lady made a profession of faith with Pastor Carlos this last spring and was preparing for baptism but has stopped coming, no reason, just stopped. Pray that she will again seek after God.
The 3 churches of Torrevieja - Spanish, English and Dutch - have collected boxes for Operation Christmas Child and they were delivered last Monday to Alicante. This is Pastor Carlos’ project and he was pleased with the involvement even though as he pointed out we collected a few more last year. I think he has taken this as a challenge for next year to increase the numbers.
It had been some time since Rafael visited the church in Barcelona. This last Sunday of November, he was there and they too were gathering their Operation Christmas Child boxes.
You might not know this but Catalunya, the state that Barcelona is in, has been in the news much regarding breaking away from the Spanish Union. This has put a big strain on the churches as there are opposing views within all of the congregations… Pray for a legal and peaceful solution and for the Church of Christ to be a testimony and not to add fuel to the fire.
This week, the Spanish ladies had a Christmas party, with the idea outreach. We had 3 new ladies attend, 2 of which are unchurched. They were very attentive as the gospel was shared. It was exciting to see the common ground that they found with some of the other ladies. Please pray for Isabel and Raquel that God would work in their hearts.
This last month, the AHT team has made contact with a couple of new young ladies who are seriously considering leaving the street. Please pray for Elena and Cristina. Both are educated, with degrees, but coerced into working on the street. Pray that God would work in their hearts so that they would trust us. It is so heartbreaking to see these who are younger than our daughters, on the street working, and then have to leave them there. Also, pray for us as we go into the brothels this Christmas season, that God would open the doors for some good contacts and conversations. http://www.athand4tears.com/
Thank you for your love, prayers and support.