The privilege of going on a prayer team

Former missionaries to Japan reflect on EMC efforts in Guadalajara.

John Reimer speaks at a gathering. Credit: Phil Hamm

by Phil and Lydia Hamm

GUADALAJARA, MEXICO–We had the privilege of going on a Missions Prayer trip to Guadalajara on Nov. 8 to 16, 2016. Thank you for supporting and praying for us. What a great time of prayer and fellowship we had with missionaries John and Connie Reimer, Ernie and Diane Koop, and Dallas and Tara Wiebe.

We joined up with three other couples and two singles from Manitoba in Houston, Texas, for the final leg of the flight to arrive at 8:30 on Tuesday evening. We stayed at the missionaries’ homes where we also had a number of prayer sessions and Bible studies. We did a prayer walk in the park, prayed at the school attended by Dallas and Tara Wiebe’s children, and prayed in downtown Guadalajara.

The Mexican hospitality was fabulous, and we enjoyed some of the cultural sites around Guadalajara. We met with each missionary, and prayed over their ministry and individuals with whom they are working.

On Sunday we had a gathering of all the groups that study the Bible with the missionaries. This was the first time that many of them had met other Mexicans studying with EMC missionaries. It took about 90 minutes for people to show up. A worship service began at 1:30.

This was also the first time that some of them had been to an evangelical worship service. They enjoyed the singing. Cam Kornelson shared a touching testimony. What a great privilege to preach and share the Word of God with them. That was followed by a graduation service for three ladies who, in two years, finished the six books on Matthew in the SEAN program.

They had a farewell service for Jessie Friesen, who came with the short-term ASCEND program in January and was leaving on Nov. This is a program we would greatly encourage young adults to consider if you are sensing God leading you into ministry or missions.

Following the service we had a barbecue lunch. During the lunch people mingled, got to know each other, had fun, and enjoyed great food. Eventually we did get to the desserts, and we sang Happy Birthday to Lydia Hamm, Minna Thiessen, and several others who were having their birthdays in the next week.

To work off some of the great food, they brought out hockey sticks and the men had a floor hockey game. The women didn’t just want to stand by and cheer, so when the men were tired out, they took to the floor and enjoyed hockey too.

What a blessing to get to know the missionaries, brothers, and sisters in Christ in Guadalajara, and spend time in prayer with and for them. There are many trials and struggles that people face; and, through those problems, they begin seeking a closer walk with Christ. The missionaries are there to guide them through the tough times and into an intimate relationship with Jesus.

Please pray for the Guadalajara missionaries. We hope some of you will consider going next year on the Missions Prayer team to Guadalajara. What faith stretching and growing experiences we had and that await you as well.

Phil and Lydia Hamm (Leamington) are a ministry couple and retired missionaries. They drew upon the EMC Board of Missions’ travel subsidy ($500/visit) available for pastors and church leaders who visit missionaries on the field. Contact Gerald Reimer at the national office for details.

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