I know what you're thinking..."ministry opportunities" means we want your money, right??? I guess that's kind of true, but many of you ask us how you can help, so it would be wrong if we didn't share with you about some urgent needs we have in our church.
First a little background on our church. The Iglesia Cristiana Biblica Misionera Waorani (Waorani Christian Missionary Bible Church) was started almost exactly two years ago by three men with a vision for the Waorani people in the surrounding communities. This eclectic group is made up of a Colombian missionary to Ecuador, a Waorani leader/pastor, and a Quichua pastor/carpenter. We have been attending the church for a year and a half and have become more and more involved in leadership. The focus of the church is reaching Waorani young people in our local area and on camps/missionary visits to Waorani communities in the jungle. These mission trips are a huge part, financially, of what we do as a church. Our membership is mostly comprised of young/poor Waorani youth, so the funds for these programs usually don't come from the offering plate.
So we have two big "opportunities" for some of you to become involved in.
1. We lack about $3000 for the upcoming camp dates. This money is used mostly for food and transportation to the very remote villages. Most of the travel is by 4x4 and then by canoe, as we focus on small, isolated villages without airstrips. How many of you have been impacted, or seen your children changed, by church camps??? This is a great opportunity to affect the lives of literally hundreds of Waorani youth, for Christ.
2. We are also outgrowing our current meeting space. We currently meet on the third floor of a apartment building. Our sanctuary is actually on the roof of the building. We love the family atmosphere of the church, but we aren't able to fit everyone in the space and the rent continues to go up. We are currently looking at the possibility of buying some property and building a very modest building to meet in. For those of you who are used to U.S. style building projects that reach into millions of dollars, don't worry. One of our pastors has raised about $12,000 toward the property. We need about $8,000-$10,000 more for the property. The building we are looking to construct would be very modest (metal structure with tin roof) and most likely constructed with the help of work teams.
I know it's easy to get overwhelmed by requests that come in from so many different ministries. All I can say is that we have been continually impressed by the outward focus of our young church. I would bet that our small church is involved in more outside the church ministries than most churches 10 times it's size in the U.S. From youth meetings with 40-50 youth each week, to children's ministry on Saturdays with 30-40 children, to 3-4 jungle camps each year, our church is really striving to live up to it's name. If you have a heart for the indigenous church, we have a place for you to invest in a great harvest.
Please contact us directly if you are interested in becoming involved in these exciting opportunities. We are not able to raise the money directly through MAF, but we will communicate with your directly about how you can give. We can't wait to see how God provides!!!