July 2005 Newsletter from Nicaragua

Warning: This newsletter was composed and dispatched by Marcus acting alone, neither Ann nor Nancy Schultz had opportunity to exercise normal editorial prudence over its content.

Dear Friends,

Ann and the children are in USA right now and I am here in Nicaragua trying to tie up loose ends before I leave on 20 July. I miss them all very much as you can imagine. They have been visiting relatives in Chicago and St Charles, Mo. The kids have been having fun with their cousins. In June we had visits from Claire Henderson, Cara Noeson (who won’t be Noeson when she comes back next time, she gets married on 23 July, congratulations Cara and Alex) and a group of young people (mostly girls) from the Harvester Christian Church led by John Tischer. I have to admit that I was mildly apprehensive about a bunch of young ladies coming here. I have been spoiled the last few years with hardy groups of men led by seasoned veterans that will sleep on bare boards and eat cold beans without complaining (much) if need be. As usual I was worried for nothing, everyone did great, got a lot accomplished and learned in the process. They worked at the church in Granada painting and doing some concrete work. They also did activities with the children in the street kids outreach now underway in Granada and trenched in some water lines to bring water directly to the kitchen were the meals are prepared for the children, needless to say, the cooks are happy about that.

John Tischer himself is preparing for the mission field. He has taken on a people group that is vastly different in many ways from his Hannibal, Mo hometown. On the field he will find a culture opposed to the truth claims of the New Testament and suspicious of anyone who will boldly proclaim the Lordship of Jesus. Where is he going?

Urban Boston Mass! The big cities of the eastern seaboard are so secular that I am sure that more people in Boston are without a relationship with Jesus per square mile than in Nicaragua! The world is changing and the old lines between “mission field” and “One Nation Under God” are disappearing . Our prayers go with you John.

Eddy Arrutia and I made a trip to the Miskitu tribal area where arraignments have been made to broadcast the text of the New Testament in the local language over the FM radio. We were checking up on the broadcast and learned that the broadcast is getting out though the station is periodically off the air due to lack of gasoline for the generator that powers it. Like much of this country there is no electricity where the transmitter is located. “Nicaragua will always be Nicaragua” the folks here say. We are working with the owner of the transmitter and a Christian medical mission that is active in the area to see what can be done to improve the reliability of the broadcast. On the same trip we went down the Prinzapolka River to a community called Tasbapouni to show the Jesus Film. There was no rain so turnout was great for the activity.

This week we made a quick visit to the Yolaina church also, bringing some supplies for the agriculture work there. The leaders in the Managua Church have helped the preacher there, Donal Lopez, get a small hog raising operation going. This has helped him provide for his family and in general stabilized the ministry there.. The reality is that in the majority of churches here the preachers must work at least part time to support themselves and their families. The Wednesday night prayer meeting was well attended I thought, 20 or so out of a church of 50 members. Donal has overcome many obstacles in the last few years as he has grown in the ministry. He and his family have had serious health problems mostly due to the wretched climate of that region. Many in the community still harbor resentment toward him because he was a Sandinista informer during the war. Those that knew him before he accepted Christ as Savior say that he is a changed man. I respect him as a brother and fellow worker in the Kingdom.

My grandfather said that you need to have a fire or move about every five years or you accumulate too much stuff. In the process of packing up to leave for an indefinite period it is seen how much stuff accumulates in a few short years. It has been sort of enjoyable in many ways giving a lot of our stuff away, kind of a defiance to the WalMart culture that programs us to buy more all the time. It is very difficult to store anything in the tropics: bugs, vermin of all sizes, mold, etc, all conspire to ruin just about anything that one would want to store. You name it, something here eats it! Therefore it is hard to pretend that it is real Christian charity giving away stuff we can't keep. Christ doesn’t call us to give our old coat away and go buy a new one, he calls us to buy a new one and give it away and wear our old one awhile longer.

One of the ideas Ann and I are exploring is returning to Nicaragua in eighteen months or so with the goal of starting a Bible Institute here or similar training program for leaders. For the past two years we have tried to coordinate leadership training efforts with the leadership of the Managua church which is the largest of seven Christian Churches in Nicaragua with little success. However there has been better acceptance with the young leaders at the Granada Church and many young men and women desire to prepare themselves for ministry. One young man started to study at the Baptist school here and another woman is at the Assembly of God seminary. Another young lady, Abdhely “Tita” Lopez is going to Colegio Biblico in Texas this fall. Few here can afford to attend school out of the country and other denominational schools for ministry here are either still living in about 1932 or heavily tending toward charismatic extremes. The emphasis the Restoration movement places on Biblical Authority within a culturally relevant Body life is a needed balance. So many churches here tend to extremes of legalism or charismania that the majority of people here who are poor and have little education are either repulsed or mislead.

Obviously this idea is still very much in its beginning stages. During our first few months in the US we want to pray and seek counsel from you all and others and determine if this is the time to pursue this.

We look forward to seeing all of you and telling you in person about the work here. In the meantime thank you for your confidence in us and for your vision for the kingdom work here in Nicaragua.

In Christ,

Marcus Pearson

Top ten things I've learned about fatherhood so far….

7. The quiet in the house when the children are not around is nice for about 20 minutes, then it’s eerie.

6. I haven’t learned even ten things about fatherhood so far

5. Childproof anything isn’t.

4. The stories the grandparents tell your children about your childhood bear no resemblance to the memories you have of that period.

3. A child can hear the opening of any package or container containing cookies or candy no matter how quietly you open it or what part of the house he is in.

2. "I just laid her down for a nap, she will probably sleep until I get back” means, “she will wake up as soon as I leave.”

1. No comparison, however accurate, of any aspect of dairy farming to any aspect of breast feeding will ever be considered funny by any woman.

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