“God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angles, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up in glory.” 1 Tim. 3:16
The first indication of Christmas in Belize begins at the close of the Hurricane season on November 30, and it’s not long before Christmas parades, lights and even the songs of ‘dreaming of a white Christmas’ fills the air. With temperatures in the mid to high 80ies with occasional ‘cold fronts’ of 73 degrees weather and island residents dressed with sweaters and jackets makes their way on golf carts, bicycles or foot to do their shopping and preparing for Christmas day. The Christmas story never gets old, ‘God was manifested in the flesh…..’ born in a lowly stable and died on a lonely cross for the sins of the world He loves so very much. With all of the tragedies in recent days, both personally, nationally and globally, it is truly good news of great joy for all man that Jesus came to earth to provide salvation through the gospel to all who would believe and receive. May your hearts and home welcome the Christ in a fresh and new way this Christmas and in the New Year!
The San Pedro Town Bible Parade:
Hundreds of Christians from over 10 churches joined together for the second Bible Parade through the streets of San Pedro Town. Since the development of the Evangelical Alliance of San Pedro, our first venture was to a make bold and loving stand for the Bible by sponsoring this year’s Bible Parade. After month of planning and praying together, December 1 arrived and we were blessed with a beautiful evening as marching band, floats, singers, dancers, worship bands, and marchers of all ages and denominations with banners and signs paraded through the main streets of San Pedro Town.
This year’s theme was ‘The Bible: proclaiming Jesus, the Word of Life.” The Parade stretched for several miles with a greater turn out than last year and ended at the Central Park for a night of worship, sharing, special music and a gospel message from a visiting pastor from Mexico. As I stood on the stage and all of the pastors who are a part of the EASP and their wives were introduced, my thoughts went back to years ago when I met with Pastor Francisco and began praying for the pastors of San Pedro Town and asking the Lord for unity among the pastors. I was touched deeply as I heard each pastor introduced and shared what God has done in their lives and anticipates what He will do as we work together to see San Pedro Town reached with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It was a blessing to hear Christian music filling the air into the wee hours of the morning, definitely not a common thing on the island!
Christmas Celebration at Amazing Grace:
I was excited to attend the Christmas Celebration at Amazing Grace Christian Fellowship, Spanish Lookout this year. It is always a special time to be with the Body and reflect back at all the Lord has done in the past year. It was a fun time watching the various age groups of children perform skits, songs, dramas and spending time with the brethren and their invited family and friends. The recently enlarged sanctuary was still not enough room for all that attended and we are blessed to see how the Lord is adding to the church daily. The largest increase has been the children as they swarm the Children Ministry rooms and the newly added playground. The youth group is getting bigger and again, it is growth from within as the kids of yesterday are becoming the youth of today and adults and leaders of tomorrow. We rejoice in the Lord at every month’s Elders/Board meeting at the faithfulness of God and all He has done over the years with a handful of hungry folks for His Word. We are also continuing to get good reports of the effects of Horizon Radio from listeners both in the Mennonite Community and surrounding areas!
This time of the year is always a busy one around the Lighthouse as we see to provide our listeners with Christmas greetings from the community. I have gathered over 30 residents personal greetings and they are now playing along with Christmas carols throughout the season on Lighthouse Christian Radio. It has been a great way to serve the community as well as getting them to tune in and hear their greetings.
Elmer Montero, staff who oversees the operations of Lighthouse Christian Radio for over 2 years, just completed his studies and received his Associates of Arts degree last week. He will be leaving us to pursue a career in his field of studies, business administration, sometime in the early part of the New Year. Elmer has played an intricate part of the ministry with his computer skills and has grown greatly in announcing the daily News. We’re grateful for his service over the years and we pray that God will continue His good work in his life. He has worked very hard and made sacrifices to attain this academic achievement!
We are going to be changing our broadcasting format in the upcoming year by catering more to our Spanish as first language listeners by playing more Spanish teaching programs during the daytime hours. As it is now, we broadcast teaching and music in Spanish from 9 pm – 2 am for those listeners who work in the evenings and late night hours. We see the necessity to increase the teaching of God’s Word; verse by verse, chapter by chapter during the daytime hours to assist in equipping the Spanish speaking believers on the island. We will also have daily devotions by the Spanish pastors who are a part of the Evangelical Alliance of San Pedro Town and looking forward to reaching more of the town’s residents as well as those in the Northern districts of the country who are Spanish speaking!
Looking behind, looking ahead:
We’ve had several challenges in 2012 with the operation of Lighthouse Christian Radio and very grateful for the major upgrades; our new transmitter, computers and new staff. There is a lot of things on my heart that I’d like to see become a reality in 2013 and I trust that the Lord will bring to pass the necessary help and means to accomplish then!
We are thankful for Yensi Maldonado as he is learning the various aspects of the operation of the radio station and the up keeping of the third floor as he is our onsite staff. Also, I’m grateful for Charles Murphy, a retired American from Texas, who comes in 3 times a week to assist us with the editing various programs.
The laborers are few and there’s much to be done so we continue to see the Lord for likeminded, shared-hearted and Christ centered servants to join our crew as we seek to touch and impact lives for the Gospel in San Pedro Town and Belize. Would you join us in this endeavor and feel free to contact me if God has been stirring your heart to partner with us.
May your hearts be open completely to Him this Christmas in into the New Year so He can do for you all that are in His heart for you!
Serving Him with you,