Wednesday, July 8, 2015

So Far in 2015 . . .

Because it has been a while since I've posted an entry, this one may be longer than usual.  So much to share.

IBP  Changes - Library news

We are glad to tell you the latest news with our Library.  There was much work to be done before the new school year began.  All hands were needed on deck to meet a very important goal. . . to have the library open for use by the students by the beginning of the bimester.
After much coordinated effort our goal was reached and the library was open for business.

A HUGE THANK YOU to all who had a part in making this dream a reality.  And most of all, THANKS to the Lord for supplying every need   -   from the people who prayed and worked, to the materials to put it all together.  He is faithful!

IBP Changes - More goodbyes and hellos

As with any educational institution, there is constant change with new students coming every year and those completing their studies, moving on to the next chapter of their lives. 

In addition to these expected changes, there are others who leave us from time to time.  This year during the break, we said goodbye to our cook, Emilce Montes and to our bookkeeper, Adriana Griffiths. 

Emi (right), a very gifted and talented young woman and previous alum of IBP, is stepping out in faith to  do what God has laid on her heart and prepared her to do.  She is planting a church in a city, Lincoln, where she feels God has called her.  Pray for Emi as she obediently steps into this project as a single woman.

Adriana, also one of our alumni, is pursuing her call to missions.  Her first step is to complete her studies in missions.  Here, it's the post grad fourth year focus in Bible School.  Since our school doesn't yet offer a fourth year, she is studying at our sister Bible school in Buenos Aires.   She's completed the first half and during this break (winter break here) she will be going on a mission trip to Peru, as part of her studies.  Adriana's future plans include going to Japan as a missionary.  Another faithful woman of God we ask you to remember in prayer.

These goodbyes meant more hellos.  Our staff has changed quite a bit.  We welcomed new staff in the kitchen, Susana and Marcela during classes and camps and such.  Susana's daughter, Jessica, is our new bookkeeper.  Rocio, another alumnus, helps us in a variety of areas. . . .  reception, event planning, purchasing, and even preparing meals for the staff between bimesters.  
Her husband, Jonhy (that’s how he spells it), serves as groundskeeper between bimesters and is one of our new students.  Jonhy and Rocio are also planting a church in the nearby coastal town, Playa Union.  Currently they are looking for a place to hold church meetings.  For about a year they have been meeting in a home but are now ready to move to a building.  Pray that God's provision would exceed their hopes and dreams.

This year we also celebrated IBP's 25th
 year anniversary.  Long time friend and veteran fellow missionary, Rocky Grams, came as our guest speaker.  Our newly formed choir gave quite the performance.  

Some of the belongings of Pastor Alicia Wood, the missionary woman who began the first Assemblies of God church in Argentina, were passed on to us and are displayed in our library.  A slide presentation was given honoring her life and legacy.

Something New For Us

Just over a month ago, there was a church split in one of our local churches here in Trelew.  The pastor decided he would pull out of the denomination taking over half of the congregation with him.  This announcement was made at an emergency church business meeting and came as a shock to many and those who stayed with the A/G were left feeling abandoned and betrayed.  To make matters worse, the pastor stayed with the building as it was rented in his name.

So many of us upon hearing this news, felt heartbroken for this group of people who were left with no pastor and no building.  We were especially saddened because we have come to know and love some of the members over the years.  Well, along with other pastors, we offered to help in any way we could to care for this group of grieving brothers and sisters.  Although at first, it appeared the church would be dissolved, in the days that followed, there began to be a hope that, just maybe, this would not be necessary.

Our denomination's leadership began to look to us to help this church not to disperse.  The people gathered to decide if they would like to stay together and start fresh.  They said yes and we also said yes.  Classes had just finished for the bimester when this all came down, so one week after that devastating blow, we were pastoring!  That very next Sunday following the Monday of the church split we were having church in one of the member's homes!  For now, we are glad to be used of God in this way to help "fill the gap."  

This Sunday we will begin to meet in a community center we were able to get for no cost for Sunday use!  Praise the Lord!  

We are due to leave Argentina in December for our year long stateside assignment, so our prayer is for a pastor with a huge heart to come and take care of this precious group of believers.  With adults and children, we are a group of about 50.  Pray with us?  Thanks!

Many Blessings to You,

Eddie and Diana