Hola a todos,
This week marked SIX MONTHS of me living in El Salvador and working at the Children’s Development Centers! Here’s a list of some of the things I’m thanking God for so far:
- all of you who support me financially and in prayer
- a host family that I trust and that cares for me
- a safe place to live
- pastors and leadership that dream big for our ministry
- high motivation to learn Spanish and the opportunity to learn in a Latino culture
- homesickness that reminds me of the amazing family and friends I have back in the States
- not having a car, which has taught me a lot about how to depend on others and on God
- each and every child that attends our Centers
- the teachers that pour their hearts into the kids’ learning
- our cooks who work so hard to make sure they go home with full stomachs
- partner churches in the States that send mission trips and support God’s work here
- every other staff member that plays their part to make sure we give these kids all we can to help them feel how much Jesus loves them
I have recently inherited a new role within our ministry as Sponsorship Coordinator for both of our Centers! Each of our children has an individual sponsor that donates monthly for them to be a part of our program. I will be in charge of communication with sponsors and will be working to get all of our children sponsored so we can continue to grow the size of our Centers. I am still in charge of the English Program at our Volcano Center, so that part of my job remains unchanged!
If you’re interested in seeing which kids are currently in need of a sponsor, you can visit our website, HERE!
Semana Santa Conference
On April 12th, over 50 members of Iglesia Gran Comisión in San Salvador and Soyapango, including myself, made the over 7-hour drive to San Pedro Sula, Honduras to attend GCLA’s annual Semana Santa (Holy Week) Conference. This year, the conference was themed “Eleva Tu Pasión” or “Elevate Your Passion”. Each pastor that shared spoke about how we can elevate our passion for God in different areas of importance in our lives.
My favorite message was given by Edwing Cárcamo from the GCLA church in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. He talked about elevating our passion for reading the Bible, seeking God’s glory as described in scripture, and living out its teachings in our practical lives. It was my first time attending this conference, and I loved it! It was three days of learning, worship and fellowship with members of our churches in El Salvador and also from all across Central America.
This month, our church has been reading through the book of Jeremiah for our daily devotional. This verse has reminded me of the heart I hope to have for God and what I hope for our kids at the Center as well:
I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the Lord. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart. // Jeremiah 24:7 (NIV)
Thank you for your continued love, support, and encouragement. It would not be possible for me to do what I am doing without you and the rest of my team!
- For a quick and smooth transition with the Sponsorship Program. I’ve already been talking to our staff about some exciting ideas and ways we can improve our communication. Please pray that those ideas can help our kids get sponsored!
- I’ll be going to Ohio for a couple weeks in May to be with my family for some family events coming up. Please pray for safe travels and for logistics to be figured out quickly and smoothly. I can’t promise how much free time I’ll have, but if you’ll be in Toledo or Columbus and would like to get together, feel free to reach out!
- I’m STILL waiting for immigration to approve my one-year residency, and it has been a very frustrating and slow process. Please pray for the approval to come through quickly and that I won’t have any issues coming and going next month when I go to Ohio.
Facebook // facebook.com/ali.howard.52
Let me know if you’d like my phone number (add me on WhatsApp!) or my current mailing address.