Sunday, April 22, 2012

Conference on the Book of ACTS

This weekend we held a conference on the Book of ACTS.  It was an intensive conference that focused on the nine church plants of the book of Acts.  We were blessed to have Elbert Smith, Director of FPO, with prior service in Mexico and Guatemala to lead the conference.  The conference was held Friday night and all day Saturday with approximately 200 in attendance on Friday night and 150 for the Saturday event.  We pray that each person gained valuable insight into church planting, and that many churches will be started in Panama as a result of the training.  There were quite a few in attendance who are already hard at work starting churches in areas where there were no churches.

Cavin will be traveling to David, Panama this weekend to lead a Church Planting Conference in this city which is about 6 hours from the capital city.  Please pray for him as he travels as well as those who will be attending the conference.

We are also gearing up for an Orality Conference on May 26.  This conference will equip those present in the technique of telling the Bible through "storying" the Bible.  This works well among groups who can't read or write.

God is working in Panama.  Thanks for all of your prayers.  They encourage us so much!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

A Story of a Church Planter

Last weekend Cavin, along with John Robert and Derek Tucker went outside of the city to an area called Ciri to help with one of our church planters.  They had a great time of helping the church planter make contacts in the community, a time of recreation playing soccer in the area, showing a Christian movie, and worshipping with them on Sunday morning.  They camped in tents for the night they were there.  It was a great time of sharing in this village.

The church planter has a really neat story.  Cesar took the Church Planting course that Cavin taught last year at the Panama Baptist Seminary.  Cesar felt the need to put into practice all that he had learned, and that God was leading him to start a new work in an area that did not have a church.  The place where he is working is about two hours from where he lives.  Someone had worked there in years before, but nobody had been there recently, and there was no church in the area.  Last October he went there for the first time.  Cesar has a normal job, and works Monday throughout Saturday.   Since last Ocotber he has taken his only free day, Sunday, and dedicated it to the Lord to travel to this community to share the good news of Christ with the people that live there.

Cesar leaves his house each Sunday morning at around 6:30 am  to arrive in the village by 10:00 am.  He drives as far as he can and then walks 2 more hours into the village because to drive in would require a 4-wheel drive vehicle.  He teaches a Bible study, and gets to know the community through relationships, then returns home, arriving at home anywhere between 4 pm and 7 pm each Sunday evening.

He spends more hours traveling than in ministry, but he feels like it's worth it because of the people that are there who need to hear the Good News.  Pray for God to continue working in this area and pray for strength and encouragement for Cesar and his work in this area.

Friday, April 6, 2012


Today is what they call "Good Friday."  I've always struggled with that title.  How could it be "good" that Jesus died.  This is the day that many times I remember to be a dreary day, and today was no exception here in Panama.  It rained this morning and remained cloudy all day.  It is to me a somber day of reflecting on what Jesus did for me on the cross of Calvary.   I did a little research to discover a little more behind the name of "Good Friday."  There seems to be some disagreement over how this day received its name.  Some say that the use of "good" as an adjective is in Old English synonym for "holy."  Others say it is a form of the word "God," similarly to how we use the word "goodbye" which comes from the phrase "God be with you."

However it got it's name, for Christians it is "good," for only through Jesus death on the cross can you and I have any hope in this world - or for eternal life.  He took all of our sins upon Himself and died as an atonement for our sins.  When we accept him as our Lord and Savior, we accept His gift of love and forgiveness of sins.  Jesus is the "good news" which means "gospel".  He died for our sins, was raised again, and we who believe have assurance and hope!