March/April 2014

Each year we are blessed with some coming during Spring Break, Harding has had a Spring Break group with us each of the last 12 year.  But this March was a little different, we had a full house with Harding, San Antonio, Texas Tech Medical/Allied Science School (El Paso, Lubbock and Amarillo), Olive Branch, Dothan, AL and Coeur d’Alene, Idaho (arrived on the 31st).  Six groups, 143 individuals on a mission.  What a month! The blessing of so many coming each year to work with us in Nicaragua is one our greatest blessings.  It is those that come that allow us to reach to so many people in so many different ways.  If it was not for the group, we just would not be able to do all that we do.  Thanks for coming, you are a blessing….

Last March we visited for the first time with One Child Matters about the possibility of developing their project in Nicaragua.  We are excited that in March we open our first two Child Development Centers in partnership with OCM.  We opened centers in the location of the church in Apanas and in Jinotega with 100 children in each center.   We presently have 150 of the 200 children sponsor for 150 of the 200 children, contact us today if you would like to be part of changing one child’s life  forever….A special thanks to Edwin, Iliana, and Juan Carlos for the work they have done with getting the centers opened.  

One blessing of new sponsorship program is that families come to Nicaragua and have time with their sponsored child.
     March also saw the expansion for both dental and eyes outreach with new equipment.  We received a portable auto refactor to help Jonathan and Sheila with Sight for Sore Eyes and new dental equipment for the dental office in Jinotega.  What a blessings!
     The group from Idaho left on the 7th and many ask what happens when groups are not in Nicaragua.  The answer is simple, the works goes on.  The Medical/Dental clinic is opened daily, Eye Center (Sight for Sore Eyes} continues to see people, schools are opened, construction project continues. CDC opened, and preachers serve their congregations.  Groups coming are a great blessing to us in all they here but may be the greatest blessing is that the groups allow us to have tremendous staff working year around.  And to our groups, all 35 of them this year, THANK YOU FOR COMING.  YOU ARE A BLESSING.
     With Holy Week being in April this year, our staff was able to have some time off.  Each year because Thursday and Friday are National Holidays in Nicaragua, the mission is closed for the whole week, giving our staff time with their families.

April also had our relationship with Texas Tech continue with the arrival of three 4th year medical student.  Or, should I say the arrival of three new doctors (Rosa, Chris & Tomas), their month in Nicaragua was their last rotation for school and they would be returning to Texas for their graduation. These students always bring an energy and excitement to the mission.
Donna and I returned to the states on the 7th to Denver for my cataract surgery and another eye procedure, something scheduled before my heart surgery in January.  Thanks to God’s blessings and skills of Dr Russ Burcham (the surgeon that came to Nicaragua in November) I now see without glasses for the first time since the 5th grade. Thanks to Dr Russ and all his staff.   The rest of the month was visiting with individuals and congregation sharing the mission.  Donna and Janese were able to be part of a combined ladies class of a number of congregations at the Hampton congregation in Texarkana.  For Donna and I the highlight of April has to be the birth our granddaughter Ava and both of us being able to be there for her arrival in this world.  Our trip back to the states continued into May.
  •   Prayers for those in Nicaragua directly affected by the earthquake in April.  We are working to help some in rebuilding and have a container of soup mix coming for distribution.  Houses can be rebuild, food can be given but God can only give the peace from the uncertainty that many are living with today. The earthquake was felt in Jinotega but that is all.
  • Working with the Dr Chad Stephens we are moving forward on the development of a Specialty Medical clinic as part of our medical outreach.  Be in touch with us on how you can be part of the development of the expansion of our medical care in Nicaragua.
  • Continue to keep the development of One Child Matters in Nicaragua as we look to the development of two additional locations.
  • We are regularly given many of opportunities to serve but we are not able to say yes to everything, please keep us in your prayers for wisdom from God for when to say yes and to say no.  We pray for it regularity.
  • Please summer in your prayers.  Our first group arrives May 10 and we have someone with us every week till August 9.  What a blessing.
  • It is time to secure more Bibles.  Be watching for ways you can help us secure 10,000 more Bibles for Nicaragua.  Cost…$3 a Bible.
  • We have container of supplies in Abilene that we need to get to Nicaragua.  Cost of shipping, fees, etc.  $ 9,000.
Thanks for all your support and encouragement.  

Because of Him:

Benny and Donna Baker with the arrival of Ava….
The March/April 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.