Having just returned from Nicaragua, my mind is full of images that bring smiles to my face and yet tears to my eyes. The vision of an EAC child proudly quoting the books of the Bible and the vision of high school students fully engaging in their spiritual training, are images that are forever etched in my mind and heart. When Mariano called out a passage of scripture the students eagerly raised their hands, unashamedly ready to read the word of God. The opportunity to gather with EAC partner-ship churches and hear the enthusiasm of church members lifting praise to our Lord in worship was amazing. Some were accompanied with a key-board, while others had no instruments, simply the sound of their loud, strong voices. As is often the case, when we visit a church there, I am asked to preach with no prior notice. Their receptivity to the gospel proves God is working. With UCM meeting many physical needs, hearts are being opened to the Gospel. After all, that is what UCM is all about; providing hope and changing lives. There are many rewards that come with ministering to those in need, and I believe the Lord says it best through the prophet Isaiah:
“If you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will be-come like the noonday. The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail….Then you will find your joy in the Lord, and I will cause you to ride on the heights of the land and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob” The mouth of the Lord has spoken. Isaiah 58:10-11,14
In His Service – David
Understanding the Needs
The cost of uniforms, shoes, socks and training materials is escalating more than usual. The government is desperate to raise funds, so recently they doubled the tax on all our purchases from 7.5% to 15%. On all fronts, we are seeing our cost escalate in this depressed economy. There is very little work and the poverty stricken families, which make up the EAC pro-gram, are the families being hit the hardest. Parents want to work, but there are simply no jobs available and there is no government assistance.
Therefore, when our new fiscal year rolls around on July 1st, we will have to make our first sponsorship increase since July 1, 2015. For several years, we have had to use undesignated funds to supplement the cost of the sponsorships, causing other needs to go unmet. Our board, in our spring meeting, will try to keep the increase to a minimum because we want to keep it affordable. New sponsorships and renewals prior to July 1 will remain at the old rate of $20 per month. EAC sponsors will be notified as soon as the board makes a decision on the amount of increase.
In comparison with 3 major child sponsorship programs, we found two programs at $39 per month and one program at $38 per month. We also found multi-million dollar marketing and consulting sale forces as well as multiple employees with six-figure salaries. While these programs are out-standing, David Webb, UCM president says, “Our EAC program is unique in it’s concentrated effort in growing children spiritually as well as the churches from which they come. The individual attention our children and their families receive is one of the most positive factors in our sponsorship program. We also require accountability for children to participate and continue in the program.”
Did you know? We use this logo for the Educate a Child program. But do you know what it symbolizes?
The child is pictured in black, representing a child in darkness but hope and light is on the way to illuminate a child’s mind and heart. The word “Educate” in red proclaims the need to teach all children that Jesus loved us enough that he shed his blood on the cross for us. At UCM, we believe that only when a child’s education includes the teachings of Jesus is their education complete. We believe it is every Christian’s duty to follow Jesus’ command in his “Great Commission” to teach all nations those things which he commanded his followers to teach.
*Did you know? Through your generosity we are currently able to provide a food distributions to our EAC families, families at the dump, and the nursing home. This will be close to 3 tons of food!!
*Did you know? You can help us tremendously by liking us on Face-book and Instagram and sharing posts with your friends and followers? Getting the word out and sharing who we are and what we are about will help spread the word about United Christian Missions! Pass it along!!
A Simple Need – But Very Powerful!
As fellow believers, we have the amazing opportunity to communi-cate with our Creator, our Father, our Provider, our Sustainer – the One who knows us better than anyone and the One who loves us more than anyone. So will you please take the opportunity to pray along with us as we lift up the following needs:
UCM Supporters, The people of Nicaragua, UCM Board Mem-bers, UCM Staff and the overall scope of this ministry.
Ministry Highlight….. Soles for Souls
Soles for Souls Project that the Patterson Grove Baptist Church of Kings Mountain promoted, became reality during our last Nicaragua visit.
Some members from that church were able to go and see first hand the reaction of children and families, when 78 pairs of boots were handed to them at the dump. Boots are a tremendous benefit as they scour through the waste at the dump searching for plastic bottles to recycle.
If anything of value gets to the dump, you can be sure they will search it out. The boots will protect them from broken glass, used needles and other objects. Thank you Patterson Grove for being such a great ministry partner!