In July FCF sent two teams to Costa Rica. The first team held VBS for 50 to 60 children in the community of Ortega, Costa Rica at our sister church located there. The second team was a group of 17 teens with FCF’s Switchback Student Ministry led by Pastor Brian Kelly. They held a sports camp and shared the gospel each day with those who attended. The lives of the youth in Ortega were touched, some were saved and many rededicated their lives to the Lord. Here are several of the testimonies of our teams:
Switchback Student Micah Graff :
“My experience in Costa Rica is one I will remember for the rest of my life. Because on previous mission trips I’ve been on, the whole focus was always on the physical work instead of the relationships, which is something that really impacted me that week. The people there really showed you what the essential of life is; it’s Christ, and him alone.”
Switchback Student Hannah Graff:
“The opportunity to go to Costa Rica was one I was greatly impacted by. I learned so much from the people about trusting God, the importance of community, and love. I made many new relationships, and I pray that I am presented with the opportunity to further them in the future, but I know that either way I will cherish them for a lifetime. The trip also taught me a lot about myself and I feel has made clear the path that God has for me and my life.”
VBS Leader Rachel Rivera:
“Since God woke me up from the life I was living and gave me a second chance at life in 2012, I have made it a mission to try very hard to show him how truly thankful I am to still be here. When I first truly became a Christian, I was thirsty for everything “Jesus!” Any bible study I could join, serving in a few of the classrooms at church, being at church three times a week. It still wasn’t enough. I saw others before me go on mission trips and heard all of these amazing stories of how they helped in other countries. How they went and did so much for others that didn’t have much or anything at all. I wanted to be a part of that. I wanted to be that difference in someone’s life. Then there was the cost and having four kids to raise by myself, there was no way I was ever going to be able to go.
This past year my children and I went through a change with our church and we came to Faith Christian in April of 2015. Since then God has been moving us in ways I never thought possible. The beginning of this year I felt the Lord laying it on my heart and telling me that it was time to go and I put the money down on my mission trip to Costa Rica. With some help from friends and family, the rest of the money was raised. Planning for my trip I had read articles on missionaries and mission trips but nothing could prepare me for my individual experience. I thought I could emotionally and mentally prepare myself but I’m not emotionally capable of doing that. I stood firm maybe for the first 18 hours, till I had my first dose of reality. I didn’t go to Costa to teach them. God sent me there for us to teach each other. They are grateful for one another, truly blessed, and rich in other ways that we fail to see sometimes. Pastor Guillermo and the Families and kids at his church welcomed me and made me feel so comfortable. I built many relationships there, that will continue and that I will forever cherish. They are my Costa Rica family and for that they keep a piece of my heart. I also got to know the rest of my mission team and those relationships I am blessed for because we all have the same passion for this and can understand what each other feels. This is just a start to a new chapter that God is writing for me and I’m so glad that Costa Rica is where I was led.”
News for August:
This month we have two more teams heading to Nicaragua. The first team will help at the Managua feeding center and present our VBS to a small church in the community of Los Hidalgos. This is a very poor community with great needs near Managua.
The second team will be starting a new three year intensive Bible course at the Bible Institute in Sebaco, Nicaragua. The Bible Institute is run by a national association named ACIBEN. This is a group of some 50 churches ,many in the rural mountains of Nicaragua. Please pray for these team members as they go beyond their Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria to bring the good news of our great Lord and Savior to others.
“you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Acts 1:8 ESV