Beth and I have the privilege of being involved in a number of different ministries down here in Chihuahua, Mexico- from serving on our consultant team to helping new missionary families as they transition to the field. Another ministry I have been involved in is teaching Mexican missionary candidates at the Instituto Misionero Transcultural, our cross-cultural ministry training program.
This two-year training program located just outside the city at a place called Rancho Siloe or “The Ranch,” is the second phase of our four-year training, with the first phase being two years at one of our Bible Institutes.
Because of our other responsibilities, I am not able to teach full time but find it very rewarding to invest in new missionaries. The courses I teach are “Biblical Self-Discipline” focusing on the necessity of a disciplined life in tribal church planting, and “The Maturing Church” focusing on church maturity according to the New Testament.
Other courses in the program cover Bible translation, literacy, culture and language study, Bible curriculum development, support raising, time management, and a lot more. It’s a great training program for Spanish speaking cross-cultural missionaries.
I love making the twenty-minute trek out to the campus each week to spend time with these incredible students. These are believers from local Mexican churches, with one student from another part of Latin America in the training right now, all with a sincere desire to reach the world for Christ; to give their lives for the sake of the Gospel! (Contact us for info on how YOU can partner with these students!)
Will you pray for the Ranch?
One of the challenges the Ranch is facing right now is that the staff has been dwindling down over the past few years. At this time there are only two families and two single ladies on site as full time staff, with three individuals from these families serving as class instructors. There are a few of us from the city who go out and teach some classes, but this shortage of on-site staff has forced us as a field to consider some hard decisions moving ahead.
One of the hardest decisions we have had to make so far was this past fall in deciding that we could not accept new incoming students, only admitting second year students. This decision caused several families and singles to be unable to attend this year to be trained for cross cultural ministry. Unless the Lord provides more staff, it is hard to imagine not having to make a similar decision again.
Will you pray with us for the Ranch? Pray that the Lord would provide Spanish speaking instructors with a desire to disciple and train up believers to partner with the local Mexican church in going out into all the world. Pray for our field leadership team as we seek the Lord’s wisdom for how to view these challenges. We count it a huge privilege to serve the Mexican church in this way and see this training as a vital part of our ministry in Mexico.
Thank you for your prayers!