As I start this newsletter I must first express thanks and appreciation to the Garland Street church in Plainview.  In January of 2005 when we wanted to move full-time with the mission in Nicaragua we needed a home for the mission.  Who better to turn to than family?  And in March of 2005 the  Garland Street church assumed the oversight of the mission.  Without that support and encouragement and God’s blessings over the last 8 years the mission could not have grown to where we are today.  Every time we have had a need they have been there for us.
            Over the last six years the Grapevine congregation in Grapevine, TX has continued to expand their partnership with the mission. That partnership reached a point that the first of this year discussion started about the possibility of the Grapevine Elders and Mission Committee assuming the oversight of the mission.  In February, Bob Burkle, one the Elders at Grapevine, was in Nicaragua.  In March I visited with the Elders in Plainview and with JW Hamby sharing that Grapevine had the interest in assuming the oversight. Over the last two months that discussion has continued and the decision has been made that Grapevine will assume that responsibility as of August 1, 2013.
Donna and I can never express fully our love and appreciation for the support that Garland Street has been not only over the last 8 years but throughout our 38 years of marriage and ministry.   They are family and always will be.
Summer 2013
The summer of 2013 has given us a new definition of full.  God has truly blessed us this summer in our efforts to share Jesus as we serve People.
A new congregation was planted in Avisinia and a congregation reestablished in La Dalia; house constructions, Bible adventures, mobile library, medical clinics serving over 10,000 people in 10 communities including 2 days in Jinotega; painting projects including the hospital; gardens, people being able to see with new glasses; dental care, clean water in homes, new WEI effort, teacher training seminars, food distribution, Uplift Nicaragua, 2-Day Community Health Promoter training, two river trips, Bible distribution, blocks made, baseball field construction, baseball clinics, two seminars for women’s health (Pantasma and Yali), Casa Materna visits, Special School visits, visiting the children in the hospital and more as the regular work of the mission continuing daily. This  was done (and more) this summer thanks to those that came from Fort Worth Christian, College Hill congregation-North Richland Hills, Highway, Olive Branch Ministries (twice), Texas Tech Medical School (twice), Chandler Street-Kilgore, Kennewick-Washington, Grapevine, North Stafford, Saturn Road-Garland, North Atlanta,  WEI teachers, Harding’s Mitchell Center of Leadership and Ministry, Knoxville, Ocala, 4th Avenue-Franklin,  Highpointe-Mckinney, Highland Oaks-Dallas, and five great interns. 355 came in June and July to serve with us and our tremendous Nicaraguan staff.  We still have 88 scheduled to be with us in August and had 49with us in May.
            It is impossible in a short newsletter to give details of all that has happened.  We encourage you to go to our website and click on galleries and see the story of the summer in pictures.  A special thanks to Jonathan who works hard at the end of each week to post selected groups’ pictures so you can get a glimpse of what happens in Nicaragua.
Uplift Nicaragua continues to be a highlight each summer.  This year Uplift was in Jinotega with over 1,500 in attendance from 92 congregations across Nicaragua.  Each year Uplift serves as the finals for Bible Bowl.  Thanks to the organizing committee that was responsible for planning the day that including frying chicken for that number. They did it all and God blessed us with success.  A special thanks to Uplift at Harding University that provides the funding for the day.
     Jonathan and Sheila continue to be a blessing to the mission in so many different ways but none more than their mission of Sight for Sore Eyes.  So far this year they have screened over 2,000 people and provided those that needed glasses the blessing of clear sight. 
      Starting August ,  Dr. Bismarck will continue to work with Teethsavers but most of his time will be serving as the dentist for the mission’s medical outreach.  Pictured here are Dr. Bismarck and Dr. Chuck Murrell working together.  In October, Dr. Perry Kocher will be return to start an effort with Dr. Bismarck to treat all the students in our schools with sealants.
     Hope for Life continues their great effort with water.  This summer they placed their 100th filter in a home.  I love the picture of Reynaldo, the preacher in Yankea, using this opportunity to share God’s 

Olive Branch Ministries has been working with us since 2004 and with their medical efforts God has blessed us to establish 8 congregations and number 9 was established  in Avinisa. 
     We are blessed each year with many who come for different reasons..  Jordan, Zee, Will and Hector came for the month of July with our son, Andrew (and our granddaughter), as part of a summer experience in Leadership and Ministry.  The summer had them in New York City, Miami, Searcy and in Nicaragua.  The final week they were on the Rio Coco.  They started their summer in Manhattan and ended in San Andres on the Rio Coco.  May God bless their tomorrows.
     In our last newsletter we mentioned the possibility of a new partnership with One Child Matters to create child development projects with the local congregations. Their Board of Directors approved the partnership in July.  Be watching for all the details of the new partnership to help serve more children spiritually, physically educationally and emotionally and to find out how you can sponsor a child. This new effort will not change our current school program but it gives a new way to serve more children.   
     July ended with our second trip on the Rio Coco for the Bible Institute, to deliver food and parasite medicine   for the Biblical Insitute.  Alberto and Efrain had 92 students in two different locations.  The next trip on the river will be in September, let us know if you would like to make this trip with us.
     We could not end this newsletter without expressing our appreciation to our interns;: Michelle, Callie, Hannah, Amelia and Paige for their complete effort working with us this summer.  They were a blessing.  May God bless Michelle, Callie and Amelia as they return to school in Texas,  Hannah as she starts PA school, and Paige as she starts Pharmacy school both at Harding. 
  • We continue to need funding for the expansion of the Institute of Preparation of Workers. We need an additional $800 a month to fully fund all six of locations of IPO.
  • Can you help us find 25 new partners for the mission and church in Nicaragua? Please share this Mission for Christ with someone.
  • Hope4Life needs your help to help us put water filters in homes and all of the schools and congregations we work directly with. The cost of each filter is $50.
  • Please keep Jonathan and Sheila in your prayers as they continue the process of trying to adopt a child in Nicaragua.
  • Funding for a container of soup.
  • Also in your prayers the development of the partnership with One Child Matters to help more children.
  • Three years ago many of you helped us secure toothbrushes. We need your help again to secure our goal of 25,000 toothbrushes for Teethsavers.
  • "Children of the Rio Coco" – Jonathan is developing a 2014 sequel, he says of a sort,  to the 2013 "Children of Jinotega" calendar he did last year. He is asking for a donation of $15 to $20 for each calendar. If you would like to get a 2014 Calendar contact Jonathan, bikercoach@gmail.com and place your order now. They make great Christmas gifts.  
  • You can make donations through our website using Pay-Pal or by mailing your support to Misión Para Cristo, Grapevine Church of Christ, 525 N Park Blvd, Grapevine, TX 76051

The 'Smile for a Child' program is intended to bring a smile to thousands of childrens’ faces at Christmas time in Nicaragua. In a country as poor as Nicaragua, this program brings joy to thousands of children each year and joy to that those make possible.

Started in 2001, thousands of generous and loving people have made it possible to distribute now over 10,000 Christmas boxes to children across several regions of Nicaragua each year! In 2012 alone - with the help of so many of you - we were able to distribute 11,036 Smile boxes! Every year has been a success but we need your help to keep it going!   Start a campaign in your congregation, school or neighborhood; send it to your family and friends; and help us reach just one more!    

Thanks for your continued support and encouragement for efforts for Him in Nicaragua.

Because of Him:  Benny and Donna Baker
The June/July Newsletter is full of pictures and information on all the things going on around the Mission. Please download the PDF version to see more pictures and read about all that is being done.