Update posted 01.15.2011
It's been a nice start to a new year, balanced between ministry and family time. Cathy of course has picked right up where she left off with sponsorship reports and the feeding program. I've been involved with some of that as well, but mainly I'm trying to lay out plans for new projects. My main goal for this quarter was to get a study center running as sort of a library and computer lab, using a room at our base that has been mostly used for storage for a while. That particular room, however, has found a use as a friend of mine has helped to start a fair trade project which we hope will give members of the community paying work that will help them break the cycle of unemployment and idleness, and let them provide for their families which are often quite large. This is something we've wanted to do for a while, so I think it's best to find somewhere else to start the study center. In the meantime, though, there is another ministry in a different community within moderate walking distance that has an empty computer lab. This is Oasis, a ministry that shares many of our goals and vision. I taught HTML classes there before, but the aging computers that had been donated to them eventually reached their 'retirement age', and now there is just one. While I am not directly involved in this ministry, I want to raise awareness anyway, in the hopes that someone knows of some old computers that might be donated to them (especially in Davao, as shipping can be difficult). They really make resources available to students, and I'd love to restart the classes I used to teach there. I also must mention that Cathy has been needing a computer of her own for work, since she is also on staff now and handles a lot of documentation. We've been looking at inexpensive netbooks like the Acer Aspire One, which is under $300. I haven't mentioned specific needs like this in a while as we were so concerned with just paying our rent, but I'd appreciate prayer in helping find a solution for this small need. Like I said, we've also found time for family, and it was especially fun to take Roldan to the Crocodile Park and Butterfly Garden now that he is older. He clearly got his smile and outgoing personality from Cathy, but I think he definitely got my love of animals and nature. Children are truly a blessing from the Lord.