St. Lukes has been involved in mission with the Nicaraguan people through our covenant missionaries Ronnie and Angi Hopkins for many years. Through our prayers, presence through mission teams, and our financial support, we are able to connect God's message of love to our Nicaraguan friends. Through person to person, church to church, and community to community connections with these Christians of another way of living, we grow ourselves in learning of God's love for all people and in our own discipleship. Find out how you can become involved in the sections below or connect with any member of our Nicaraguan Mission Planning Team: Kevin Clark, Bill Garrard, Beth Osbahr, and Beth Steelmon. They have stories to tell of how God works through us and in us in our mission with the Nicaraguan people.
Ronnie and Angi Hopkins have been in Nicaragua for over 11 years. Their connection began as they would take mission teams to Nicaragua from their homebase in the Red Bird Missionary Conference in western Kentucky. Then they found their love for the Nicaraguan people was so strong that God called them to be full time missionaries. So in 2005 they came under the auspices of The Mission Society (now TMS Global). St. Lukes has supported them since the beginning. Angi is a nurse practitioner who works in health education and with women in bettering their economic and spiritual life through creating craft groups. Ronnie's focus is working with youth leadership development and community development in equipping Nicaraguans in remote areas with better health, education, and spiritual life. The Hopkins have immersed themselves in the lives of the Nicaraguan who serve with them and are great hosts to our mission teams. Their life has been immensely enriched with the addition of "Peanut" as their Nicaraguan child. They are people of immense humility and kindness. Listen to them share about their work. Here is a summary of their work from 2015 - 2018. Read their latest newsletters: Updates on the work with the people on the River Bocay: Jan, June, June 30, July and , 2018. Listen to the school kids in the remote area of Rio Bocay play their band "instruments."
Although our national media
has not really covered the fact that
Of course the work of our missionaries Ronnie and Angi Hopkins have been affected. They are trying to continue their work while helping those with whom they work live through this most difficult time. Because mission teams are not coming, many of the people who work with them as translators, coordinators, support personnel, etc, are not receiving remuneration. For more information on the situation and how you can help, please see the information the Hopkins have provided for us in their latest newsletters: June 30, 2018, June, 2018
Please pray for them and the
Rev. Bill Garrard
Global Missions Coordinator
OVERVIEW: Many people have had life changing experiences by serving on one of our mission teams to Nicaragua. Although you are going from a place of familiarity and relative comfort, God goes with you to show you how God is already working in the lives of people different from you. Teams need all kinds of people with all kinds of skills to work with the Hopkins to show love and to equip the Nicaraguans to build better lives. In doing so, team members are blessed with new relationships in the family of God and grow in their insight and understanding of their own place of calling and service in the Kingdom of God. Teams are led by the Hopkins and experienced team leaders from St. Lukes and include Nicaraguans who serve as part of the team. Here are some newsletters describing what some past teams from St. Lukes were about: August, 2016; November 2014; August 2013. Each team is prepared for what the experience is to be like as well as how we are to be in mission . For help in listening to God about your going on a team, we have prepared this brochure which gives you a lot of information. Better yet, talk with one of the many people who have already made that trip including Dr. Kevin Clark, Beth Osbahr, Beth Steelmon, Tom Stewart, Jeff Kerley, Bryan Clark, Kyle Clark, Bruce and Becky Beerbower, Vicky and Raymundo Villanueva, Janice Garrard, Betty Gast, Pat Anderson, Chris Duncan, and more. Scholarship help is available and we believe if one is called, God will find a way. Here are some more ideas on how to fund your trip.
SPECIFIC INFORMATION ON THE NOVEMBER TEAM
The dates for our November mission trip to Rio Bocay are November 6-15. Dr. Kevin Clark (email@example.com, (828) 308-0210) will be our team leader and those who are planning on going are Lisa, Kyle, and Bryan Clark, Janice and Jill Garrard, Beth Steelmon, Vickie Villanueva, and Larry Gage, and others that have indicated a strong interest in being part of this team.
Projects can include medical teaching and home visits, serving in a maternity home, small construction projects at the clinic training center, evangelistic work, working with children and youth, helping teachers etc. An informational session for this trip will be held at 5:00 pm on Tuesday August 22 in the Seekers Classroom. Contact Kevin if you feel the call to go, as we will find a place for you to serve using your gifts and interests.
The estimated cost of the trip is between $1500 and $1700 depending on the price of the airline tickets and how many are on the team. Some scholarship funds are available. The deadline for a deposit of $800 is September 6 which will enable the purchase of airline tickets which are nonrefundable. The balance will be due on or before October 6th.
Janice and Bill Garrard, and Beth Steelmon went on a similar trip last year and can answer your questions. We pray God will bring together just the right people to serve on this team including the Nicaraguans who join us.
We committed to raising money for the renovation of a once abandoned two room primary school at Sivivas, a community on the River Bocay. The school is now being used, but when we saw it in August of 2016 it was abandoned with squatters living in it. The cost of renovations was around $8000 with another $1000 for equipment. We worked diligently to help with this project asking groups and individuals within the church to help raise the funds to provide the children in this community a good environment for learning.
Basic education has been lacking for the people all along the river and they are eager to build or repair schools themselves if those from the outside can provide the funding. Our teams have observed teens that were just beginning their primary education because education had not been available before.
Praise the Lord! By November 2018 through the generosity of many, we have raised the funds to pay for this school renovation and so grateful to God for what this means to the children and their families to have an education.
- Here is the current update on the project:
Repairs are almost completed on the school. A solar system to provide electricity for lights and a computer will be added in January 2018 when the new school year starts. The community has built the fence around the school and will finish the roof soon. Two days of training for the women were provided to help with in their sewing projects including making the children’s school uniforms. Many thanks for helping to make this a successful school. The kids are doing great!
We were also able to provide the children with nets to protect them from mosquito borne illness. And water purification filters which use five gallon buckets for each of their families.
If you have more questions about this, talk with Bill Garrard, Global Missions Coordinator.