Friday, September 15, 2017

EL RETO MIDPOINT

We are at the midpoint of this year's youth outreach, EL RETO!  "ENFOQUE" (Focus) is the theme as we encourage the students to focus on the things above (Colossians 3:1,2)

"Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.  Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things."

Lain has been doing a great job of writing up reports with pictures and placing them on his blog and Macx has done excellent once again with the videos.

You can see the information here:

EL RETO 2017 WEEK ONE:
Report with Pictures
Video:


EL RETO 2017 WEEK TWO:
Report with Pictures
Video:


EL RETO 2017 WEEK THREE:
Report with Pictures
Video:




DUE TO A LOW ECONOMICAL STATUS IN THIS AREA, WE DO NOT CHARGE ANYONE TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS EVENT IN ORDER THAT THE STUDENTS MAY BE ABLE TO ATTEND.

IT IS PEOPLE LIKE YOU WHO HELP MAKE THIS HAPPEN.


THANK YOU




Monday, September 04, 2017

SEPTEMBER MINISTRY UPDATE

Greetings from Cofradía, Mexico! 
We are praying for all of our friends in Houston as you recover from Hurricane Harvey.

A big thank you to all who have responded to us saying you’ve been praying for us.  That means so much!  We are so grateful for all of you and appreciate your generosity and help.

We are doing better and looking into ways to make our house more secure for the future as well as the mission base which was also broken into.

GIVE THANKS TO THE LORD, FOR HE IS GOOD; HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER!

In our last update, we asked you to please pray for...

  1. Wisdom, Protection, the Theif, and Cofradia in General Thank you! 
  2. The Restoration Center in Rosamorada.  Thank you for continuing to lift this up in prayer. 
  3. EL RETO 2017 has begun!  The first two weeks are behind us as the students talked about their identity as a team and relate it to who we are in Christ in the first week and did The Walk in the second week.  You can check out some pictures and video at our Facebook page.
  4. Rebecka is doing excellent at school and has the travelling thing down now.  She turned 15 on August 13 and we had a nice small get-together with family and friends.

Here are some links to more:


This month, will you please pray for...

  1. Wisdom as we continue to deal with the break-in. 
  2. EL RETO 2017 please keep praying for this.  On each Saturday of September, we’ll have a number of students who don’t know Jesus get to hear about Him. 
  3. The Restoration Center.  Please pray for Amado and his team to continue to make progress. 
  4. Dwellings Build #13 in Cofradia.  Things are moving right along as the Romero Carrillo family is receiving a house.  This was sponsored by our friends, the Sluys, and is being built by the locals. 
  5. Dwellings Build #14.  We are also beginning the prep work for our next build with our friends from The Well in Salt Lake City.  They will be joining us to build a house for Pastor Abimael and is family who live in Tuxpan the first week of November. 
  6. La Cofradia United International is the name of our Civil Association.  Please pray for me to have wisdom as we work out some financial details with our accountant. 
  7. Summit Bible College Nayarit Extension.  Please pray for me to have wisdom as there are loads of administrative things to take care of.
Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever!

Thank you so much for being part of our team as we work together to RAISE UP LEADERS IN RURAL MEXICO!!!!

Blessings,













Steve, Geña, Rebecka, Emma, and Mackenzie Silberman
Missionaries to Mexico
Alternative Missions
Cofradia Area Director
** JOIN OUR FINANCIAL SUPPORT TEAM **
ONLINE:
Online, you can make a one-time, tax-deductible gift, or set up to make automatic monthly donations to our personal support at this link.


MAIL IN A CHECK: 
Send a check made out to Alternative Missions to Alternative Missions / PO Box 3107 / Ferndale, WA 98248.  Indicate that it is for The Silbermans.




Thursday, August 17, 2017

AUGUST MINISTRY UPDATE

Greetings from Cofradia, Mexico! 

Some information that was sent in the original email version of our update has been omitted.  Email me for details if you are did not receive the email.  
GIVE THANKS TO THE LORD, FOR HE IS GOOD; HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER!

Will you please pray for...

  1. Wisdom for us as we deal with difficult situations. 
  2. Protection for our family. 
  3. Cofradia in general and specifically for the drug problems.
  4. The Restoration Center in Rosamorada.  The land that we want to help Pastor Amado purchase is now $11,000 away.  There are still $2,500 of matching funds available.  Your $2,500 gift will be doubled and that will leave us with just $6,000 to raise.  Please pray about a generous contribution and join us in helping individuals be free from their addictions.  Please contribute here.  Read more here.
  5. EL RETO 2017 will be starting in less than two weeks and we are half way to our goal of $2,000.  Click here for more information and how to participate.
  6. Rebecka as she has started high school and is travelling 40 minutes each morning and afternoon by taxi.  Pray she finds godly friends.

Here are some links to more:

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever!

Thank you so much for being part of our team as we work together to RAISE UP LEADERS IN RURAL MEXICO!!!!

Blessings,









Steve, Geña, Rebecka, Emma, and Mackenzie Silberman
Missionaries to Mexico
Alternative Missions
Cofradia Area Director

** JOIN OUR FINANCIAL SUPPORT TEAM **
ONLINE:
Online, you can make a one-time, tax-deductible gift, or set up to make automatic monthly donations to our personal support at this link.


MAIL IN A CHECK: 
Send a check made out to Alternative Missions to Alternative Missions / PO Box 3107 / Ferndale, WA 98248.  Indicate that it is for The Silbermans.




Wednesday, July 12, 2017

JULY MINISTRY UPDATE

Greetings from Washington State! We have been in Washington State for just over a week and it’s great to be visiting the family.  We were able to see a number of you on our way up through Arizona, California, and Oregon.  We also were able to visit some of you already here in Washington.  Our plan is to stay here for the month of July before heading back to Cofradia the first of August.

Please contact us about getting together as time always flies when we’re in the states and our agenda gets filled up quick.

We are available for speaking at church services, mid-week services, home groups, youth groups, Sunday school classes, etc.

Looking forward to seeing as many of you as we can.

GIVE THANKS TO THE LORD, FOR HE IS GOOD; HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER!
Last month, we asked you to pray for... 

  1. Bible School Graduation: We were anticipating seven graduates, but it turned out that only three were eligible due to a requirement that we were unaware of.  The three graduates; Alfonso and Secundina from our church who live in Santa Fe and Noe from Mexico City who was finishing up his classes online after starting them in California.  It was a fun and blessed day. 
  2. Trip to the States: Thank you and continue to pray as we return in August. 
  3. EL RETO 2017: We are still considerably short of our $2,000 goal.  Please consider how you can help in order to reach out to students in need. 
  4. Church Ministry: Thank you for your prayers. 
  5. Jay and Faith TenBrink have left Cofradia and are on their way to their new, but former, home of Washington State.  Continue to lift them up in prayer as they adjust to returning to the states and find a place to live. 
  6. Our Family: Thank you so much for your prayers over our family.

Here are some links to more:

This month, will you please pray for...
  1. Pastor Goyo fell and broke his elbow recently.  He underwent surgery and is recuperating well.  Please pray for full mobility and a quick recovery. 
  2. Our time in the States as we visit with family and friends and try to get some relaxing in. 
  3. The Restoration Center in Rosamorada as they are conditioning a rental while we continue to raise funds for land.  We recently went with Pastor Amado to purchase a section of land and was told we needed to buy the whole 8 acres at once and not in sections.  That puts us $12,000 short.  There is an anonymous donor who is matching up to $3,000.  That means that your donation would be doubled up to $3,000 dollars ($6,000).  This is a great opportunity to invest in the Kingdom of God.  We could use your help with a generous contribution.  I have written more information here.
  4. EL RETO 2017 will be starting at the end of August.  This year’s theme is “Focus”.  Click here for more information and how to participate.

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever!

Thank you so much for being part of our team as we work together to RAISE UP LEADERS IN RURAL MEXICO!!!!

Blessings,









Steve, Geña, Rebecka, Emma, and Mackenzie Silberman
Missionaries to Mexico
Alternative Missions
Cofradia Area Director
Ministry Website
Facebook
** JOIN OUR FINANCIAL SUPPORT TEAM **ONLINE:
Online, you can make a one-time, tax-deductible gift, or set up to make automatic monthly donations to our personal support at this link.
 

MAIL IN A CHECK: 
Send a check made out to Alternative Missions to Alternative Missions / PO Box 3107 / Ferndale, WA 98248.  Indicate that it is for The Silbermans.




PASTORS' PERSPECTIVES

Our church plant, Centro Cristiano Cofradia, includes three main pastors who play an important role in the church's ministry development: Pastor Gregorio Hernandez, Pastor Luis Vazquez, and Pastor Horacio Garzon.  For the past few years, Pastor Amado Verdin has been joining us as he leads a congregation in Rosamorada, just a few miles north of Cofradia.  He is also undertaking the huge project of a Drug Rehabilitation Center which we are helping him develop.  I've asked him to be a part of this bi-annual report.

Here are their reports and perspective on the ministry:


Pastor Gregorio Hernandez is our main lead pastor and oversees all ministries at the church.  In order for him to work full-time as a Pastor, which is very important to us, he needs supplemental income from supporters like you.  His current need is $250 per month.  Please consider how you can help him continue to work full-time.  Click on his name to become a monthly donor.


Here is his report:

For 2017 we chose a specific theme that we would explore over the course of the whole year. That theme is “Let’s live free in Christ.” This has truly helped us to understand the freedom that Christ has given us and to hold tight to the identity, security, and value we have in Him.

Without the help of God and of many brothers and sisters, nothing would be working the way things have been working over the past six months. The theme we chose for this year has stimulated our ministry in very practical ways, especially in Las Pilas and in Arrayanes.

In Las Pilas we have had people visit our meetings who have never attended before. Because of this growth we wish to build a central meeting space, and we hope that by the end of the year we will have acquired the land we need for that project.

In Arrayanes we have begun a Bible study that meets on Fridays at 5:00 p.m., and people are attending! So we continue to sow the seeds of discipline to continue meeting every week. We have also begun visiting homes to share the gospel, and we even hosted an open-air evangelism in which brothers and sisters from both Cofradía and Arrayanes participated.

In all of this we continue to thank you for your support, both through prayers and finances, because you have made it possible for us to remain in the ministry of sowing the Word of God. Many thanks for being an active part in our ministry. May God bless you with every spiritual blessing in Christ.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.  —Ephesians 1:3

Sincerely,

Pastors Gregorio & Maty Hernandez-Espinoza, and family
______________________________________________________________

Pastor Luis Vazquez is our Student Ministries pastor and maintenance director for the church.  He also serves as the Cofradia Dwellings Foreman for building less-fortunate people homes.  He is very busy and struggles to make ends meat each week.  His need for supplemental income is $150 per month.  Consider how you can help him by clicking on his name to become a monthly donor.

Here is his report:

Hello, and may God bless you and your families with all spiritual richness in Christ Jesus. We greet you in this letter, hoping that you are well in body and spirit in the Lord.

We thank God for you every time we remember your great love for us, which you have demonstrated by pouring out on my family, our ministry, and the church the blessing of both your financial and prayer support.

We have just completed the discipleship course New Life with the youth. We met every Saturday morning for twelve weeks, and on June 18, we had a recognition ceremony for those youth who completed the class. The group included young people from the church of Pastor Amado in the town of Rosamorada, since we have been partnering with him in the area of youth ministry. We will soon begin a more in-depth discipleship study series with this group of young people, with the goal that once they complete the entire series of studies, they will then lead future classes for new discipleship students. In this way they will be able to grow as student leaders within our own youth ministry.

We are now in the midst of planning this year’s EL RETO event, which will take place every Saturday from August 26 through September 30. Our vision for this event is to continue to reach more youth with the gospel. We also want to prepare the youth currently in our program for leadership; we do this by choosing new team captains every year, and those captains serve as leadership apprentices over the course of the event. Once EL RETO has concluded, I will continue to disciple some of the team captains so that they will continue to have opportunities to grow and be able to serve as leaders within the youth group.

My wife and I continue attending the Bible College through our church. We are now pursuing a Masters/Doctorate concurrent degree, which we will complete next year. We are learning a great deal about marriage and how to help children in their walk with the Lord.

Two of my sons, Luis and Angel, are in the youth discipleship class, and my wife, Mari, and daughter, Carolina, are teaching that class. We are all growing, praise the Lord!!!

Prayer requests:
      For this year’s EL RETO: finances, leadership, planning, team captains, protections, success
      For the youth:  identity, service, and devotion to God
      For my family: finances, God’s care and protection, health, family unity

We thank you again for your generosity and send you encouragement in the Lord.

Sincerely,
The Vázquez-Sicairos Family             
______________________________________________________________

Pastor Horacio Garzon leads the indigenous ministry in Mojocuautla and helps facilitate ministry in Arrayanes.

Here is his report:

As is always true, it is a pleasure to take up my pen to write this letter and say thank you once again for your financial support. I hope that you are well and in good health, just as we are, thanks be to God.

Brothers and sisters, I ask you to cover my daughter, Kenia, in your prayers, first and foremost for the rebellious character she has been demonstrating. Drawing help from the Word of God, I have recently had to confront her about this, and I have been praying for her attitude. I also ask you to keep in prayer the new level of schooling she is about to enter. It will bring her opportunities to grow in how she manages her time and in her manner of relating to others. We are also exploring our options for how to pay for her room and board, meals, and the school materials she will need, for our desire is that she continue her studies.

I am excited for our next retreat—a pastor’s retreat in Mexico City in July. I believe it will be a great blessing.

Martin
Please receive greetings from Martín, who is living in the mountain village of Mesa del Nayar serving with the leaders of the school there. In June, together with Pastor Hector and several members of his church, we had the privilege of going there to support their ministry.

Brothers and sisters, thank you so much for helping me. May God continue to bless you, and please receive the warmest greetings from my wife, Maria, and I.

Thank you,
Horacio Gonzalez-Orozco
______________________________________________________________

Pastor Amado Verdin is from Rosamorada and is the lead pastor of Iglesia Hermosa Casa de Oración.  He also is heading up the drug rehab center which he likes to call a Restoration Center.  The center is designed to house interns and help them be restored to good health physically, mentally, and spiritually.  They will also be trained in a trade in order to help them be reinstalled into society once they're finished with the program.  You can read about my explanation of their current financial need here and click on his name to help with his project.

Here is his report:

Our vision is to provide a place where any person with any kind of addiction can be recuperated and find hope for a better life.  They will be prepared to face the every-day challenges that getting back into society presents.

Our mission is to restore the addicts lives so they will be able to return to society clean.  We will teach them God's principals so they will have hope and to remain stable in their daily lives.  We will equip them with a useful trade so they can serve the community and be able to sustain themselves financially.

We currently have a rental house to temporarily establish the restoration center "Lighthouse of Hope" while we obtain land where we can build the center as it is in our vision.  The municipal government has donated a new stove and fridge, we have also been given wood to make bunk beds, and we also  recently received the study materials we need to help the interns.

Our current needs are 12 individual mattresses, kitchen supplies, fans, bedding, pillows, tables and chairs, chalkboard, white screen for projections, office furniture, and bibles.

Amado

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

ROSAMORADA REHAB CENTER

Amado's vision is to provide a place where those who have whatever kind of addiction can be restored to good health and find hope and a place in the community by learning a trade.  The mission is to restore addicts and healthfully reinstall them into society.

Each week, the Mayor of Rosamorada receives phone calls or has people come to him for help with their family members who have addictions.  He is anxiously waiting for the Rehab Center to get started and has promised help with the building of the Center.  The obstacle is property.

There was about 8 acres of land that is very suitable for this project, but the owner has raised her price to $350,000 pesos (roughly $20,000 USDollars).  We went with Amado to pay for a portion of the land after raising $8,000 dollars.  We found out that cannot be done, but the whole property needs to be bought instead.  We need $12,000 more dollars in order to satisfy the payment of the land and help Amado get started with the building projects.

In the meantime, Pastor Amado and his team have been getting a rental ready to house up to 12 interns and begin restoring lives in the Rehab Center.  Waiting for the property is only dragging out the commencement.

PLEASE GENEROUSLY CONSIDER HOW YOU CAN HELP.


Here are some photos of the rental house they will be using:
Front of rental house.

Side of rental house.

Back yard of rental house.

Pastor Amado in the kitchen area.

The Mayor donated a stove and fridge to the Center.

Pastor Amado and his family.



ANNOUNCING EL RETO 2017!!

EL RETO 2017 is just around the corner and we are making preparations for this 6 week youth outreach in August and September.

This year's theme is "ENFOQUE" (Focus).  Colossians 3:1,2 says, "Since then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.  Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things."

Today, there are so many distractions in our lives: financial security, possessions, appearance, television, internet, and especially Facebook.  The list could go on.  The concept that the Apostle Paul shares applies to us today.  Not that these things are "bad", but when used incorrectly, they become a distraction and we lose our focus on God and His principles.

This year, we want to help the students become aware of how "things" can distract us from following God and receiving His blessings.

JOIN US AS WE REACH OUT TO YOUNG PEOPLE WHO NEED HOPE AND PURPOSE IN LIFE!

Our goal for a working budget is $2,000 which includes promotional materials, activity materials, staff and captain shirts, snacks for the students, and our major expense of transportation.

We do not charge anyone to come which is why we need your help.

Thank you for your generous contributions!



Here is how last year ended:




Wednesday, June 07, 2017

JUNE MINISTRY UPDATE

Greetings from Cofradía, Mexico! In just three weeks we will be heading north to Washington.  We will be there for the month of July and will need to return to Cofradía for a week of orientation classes at the High School for Rebecka in August.  During our time in the US, we will be driving up through Arizona, California, and Oregon with hopes of arriving in Washington just before Independence Day.  Then, about the first of August, we’ll head back south the way we came and hopefully celebrate Rebecka’s 15th (Quinceañera) birthday on the way.

Please contact us about getting together as time always flies when we’re in the states and our agenda gets filled up quick.

We are available for speaking at church services, mid-week services, home groups, youth groups, Sunday school classes, etc.

Looking forward to seeing as many of you as we can.

A little over a month ago, I was approached by an elderly man named Gustavo from Las Pilas who needs help with the labor of building a room onto his house with materials the government supplied for him.  The rainy season is coming and he was desperate for help.  Pastor Goyo has been leading small groups of helpers to pour the floor and build the walls.  Here is a link to some of the activity there.


GIVE THANKS TO THE LORD, FOR HE IS GOOD; HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER!
Last month, we asked you to pray for... 

  1. Pastors’ Retreat: Thank you for your prayers as we Raise Up Leaders in Rural Mexico.  This retreat went really well and the pastors who attended were encouraged and felt refreshed (to put it mildly).  Here is the report.
  2. Las Pilas Church: This will be a continual request for prayer.  I have posted on our blog our prayer petition.
  3. Arrayanes Church: This is also a continual request.  Pastor Goyo has been meeting with a few people, praying together, and planning what to do for an awakening in Arrayanes.
  4. Our Family: Thank you for your prayers!  We are constantly in need of prayer and appreciate people like you who faithfully pray for us.

Here are some links to more:


This month, will you please pray for...

  1. Bible School Graduation: Seven students will be graduating with different degrees on June 18.  Pray that this will be a blessing for them and the church as we continue to raise up leaders.  Our friend, Francisco Jimenez, from Oxnard, CA, will be joining us again this year as well as some graduating students from Mexico City.  We anticipate a great day! 
  2. Trip to the States: Please pray for travel safety, God’s provision, and good health as we travel the next couple of months.  We look forward to seeing as many of you as we can while we’re in the states. (June 23 – early-August). 
  3. EL RETO 2017: Please pray for Pastor Luis and his team as they begin planning for our annual youth outreach.  The event starts the last Saturday of August, but it’s not too early to start praying for the staff, captains, and students who will be involved.  This event operates with a $2,000 US Dollar budget and is funded by mostly donations from many of you and some minimal fund raising here.  This way, we do not have to charge anyone for attending.  Because of some faithful givers throughout this past year, we have roughly $400 USD already raised!!  That means, in order to reach our goal, we need at least $1,600 more.  Please prayerfully consider a generous contribution to reach out to these unchurched students.  Here is a link to contribute online.
  4. Church Ministry: Pastor Goyo and his leadership team have been doing an excellent job lately as they are leading small group meetings and evangelisms in different towns.  He is heading up the meetings in Arrayanes and overseeing the meetings in Cofradia and Las Pilas where Angel and Francisca lead their groups respectively. 
  5. Jay and Faith TenBrink will be leaving the mission field of Mexico and returning to Washington State in July.  They recently had returned to Cofradia to help facilitate a ministry in the mountains where Martin, Pastor Horacio’s son, is now living.  Jay has been a huge help around the base and church with mechanics, media, and a number of other things.  Pray for them to be able to reestablish their lives in Washington, for work, and direction for their future. 
  6. Our Family: Please continue to pray for our family.  Pray for the Lord’s wisdom, clear communication amongst each other and with others, a considerate and loving heart to hurting people, God’s guidance in leadership, and whatever else the Lord lays on your heart.

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever!

Thank you so much for being part of our team as we work together to RAISE UP LEADERS IN RURAL MEXICO!!!!

Blessings,













Steve, Geña, Rebecka, Emma, and Mackenzie Silberman
Missionaries to Mexico
Alternative Missions
Cofradia Area Director
Ministry Website: www.cofradiaunited.com
Facebook

** JOIN OUR FINANCIAL SUPPORT TEAM **

ONLINE:
Online, you can make a one-time, tax-deductible gift, or set up to make automatic monthly donations to our personal support at this link.


MAIL IN A CHECK: 
Send a check made out to Alternative Missions to Alternative Missions / PO Box 3107 / Ferndale, WA 98248.  Indicate that it is for The Silbermans.




Thursday, June 01, 2017

Arrayanes Church

Pastor Goyo has been meeting with a few people in Arrayanes each week.  Please pray with us for an awakening in Arrayanes.  Here is our request of prayer for Arrayanes in our recent update:
"As many of you know we have church property and a building in Arrayanes where we gathered on Sunday evenings a number of years ago.  We eventually started to meet all together in Cofradía on Sundays and held home bible studies in Arrayanes during the week.  Activity in Arrayanes has gradually decreased and is almost non-existent.  The building is no longer being used and the property looks abandoned.  Some of the Arrayanes congregation continues to meet with us in Cofradía on Sundays, but many do not come or have quit coming.  We would like to see something happen during the week to give the opportunity of meeting together for those who do not come or cannot attend.  Pastor Goyo met with them last Friday night to talk to them about starting something up again.  We are praying that the Lord would begin to move once again in this town.  The enemy has taken ground and we want it back.  To give you a better picture, read all of Nehemiah 2 and give attention to verses 17 and 18.  After praying about this for some time, it has really been on our hearts to 'rebuild' in Arrayanes.  Pastor Goyo will meet again with them on May 19."

Las Pilas Church

In our latest update, I shared a request of prayer for this town and direction for the future of the church that meets together each week:
"For a number of years, one of the members of the Cofradía church has been visiting Las Pilas (the town right before you get to Cofradía from the Interstate).  She, Secundina, has adequately discipled one of the locals, Francisca (the wife of Mario the Taco guy), who in turn has been leading bible studies for a couple of years now.  About seven people in town came to her asking her to teach them and lead them.  With the help of Secundina and occasional visits by Pastor Goyo, their meetings have been consistent and they have been growing spiritually.  They currently meet on Thursdays home-group style and will continue to do so, but we’re also praying about a more communal place for them to meet which would include property and a building like we have at the mission base.  Please pray with us for their continued growth and direction for the future of the Las Pilas Church."

This is the style of building we would be interested in for the Las Pilas church.
Please continue to pray for the Lord's direction and provision.