BEST SUMMER EVER!!
In a period of about 50 days, from July to August, we distributed more than 20,000 brochures in a 3-mile radius around our church, we shared the gospel with thousands of people, and we had evangelistic events in a dozen different neighborhoods. More than 150 volunteers from Centro Shalom toured with the missionaries who visited us, together walking street by street and knocking house by house for hundreds of miles. There’s no room for doubt- God did great things at Centro Shalom this summer. He continues to do great things in Tijuana! “How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace.” Romans 10:15
We started our summer in the best way! A team from First Presbyterian Church of Rome, Georgia was here in Tijuana and we worked together in four different neighborhoods near Centro Shalom. We cut hair, painted faces, shared a drama presentation, and prayed with many of the people. In those four neighborhoods in just a few days we brought the good news to hundreds of people! The team from FPCR also purchased new shoes for 40 of the children who attend our church. Jeff, a member of FPCR who is a CrossFit coach, coached over 40 people for us daily at our Shalom CrossFit Gym! It was a week full of blessings.
Smoke Rise Baptist Church from Georgia was our next ally in ministry, and we were able to bless a family that is very faithful to Centro Shalom with a very nice room that was an addition to their current home. We also painted a mural at our new playground that was drawn by a woman that attends Centro Shalom. It looks amazing! We also took a group of almost 40 children to the movie theatre to see The Lion King in special theatre just for kids with slides and a play area! The popcorn and candy sent their energy level sky-high. That week we were also working at an apartment complex where several families who attend services at Centro Shalom live, and we had an excellent time all week with children from that area.
Our friends and brothers from Aspire Church in Phoenix arrived with a lot of energy to work very hard all weekend in spite of the heat. Together with them we visited two neighborhoods where we distributed dry rice and beans and of course, the message of hope so lovingly presented by the Pastor Pat Brandlin.
Afterwards we hosted Ocean View Church from San Diego. We had an amazing week with them, and we had four carnivals in four different areas around Centro Shalom. Each of those carnivals was a huge success and a lot of fun! We had inflatable water slides which were a big hit because it was so hot outside that week. We also had live music, face painting, popcorn, and snow cones. All in attendance really enjoyed themselves. Throughout that week we promoted our exciting event that we had on Friday, August 16- our “Festival Para La Familia” (Family Festival)!
There is a stadium less than half a mile from the church, and on that awesome day we had more than 3,000 people from the community attend our Family Festival. 98% of the people who came were totally new to us! We distributed 3 new laptops, over 800 backpacks, many other prizes, and an unbelievable amount of popcorn and snow cones. We had a fantastic time of worship that inspired us to glorify God and a message of reflection and repentance that taught us how desperately we need God in our lives. The response was amazing, and God did great things that day. Without a doubt we let our community know that we are here, and we are ready to receive them at Centro Shalom to help them grow in the Lord.
For our very exciting final event, the Kreutzkamp Foundation of San Diego sponsored 100 of the children and youth who attend Centro Shalom in a very generous way. Each child received a donation of tennis shoes, school uniform shoes, school uniform clothing sets, PE uniform sets, backpacks, and all required school supplies. The Kreutzkamp Foundation also provided the funds to throw a back-to-school party with music, a message, food, games, and gifts. It was a day that not one of those 100 children will ever forget. Surely in their lives they had never received such a generous blessing in a single day.