Update – October, 2020

David and Sara Lont with our daughter, Anna.

You can download a copy of this letter in PDF format here.

Dear friends, family, and supporters,

It’s a joy to greet you once again from the autumn fields here in the mountains, just outside of Tulancingo. Summer has gone by, and now it’s starting to get cooler again. We’ve have several nights of hard frost in our area, changing the beautiful green fields of corn to a dry, brown color and slowly transforming the luscious green pasturelands into varying shades of yellow. It is the cycle of life, the turning of the seasons, the very way God created nature to function. As the writer of Ecclesiastes says, “Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.” (Ecclesiastes 3:11, NLT).

Everything is beautiful in its own time. Even during this season in which a plague of disease and death has come upon the earth, causing the lives of many to suddenly wilt away, God continues to reign above it all. He continues to be beautiful, faithful, true, holy and good. We can continue to place all of our hope in Him, for He still cares for us. Yes, there is nothing that can separate us from His love! We have eternity in our hearts, even though we cannot fathom the entire scope of God’s work within the affairs of our lowly human existence. Yet we trust Him who created us, because eternity has been planted in our hearts. We know that even when the oceans roar and the mountains crumble, our God remains the same, and when we are planted upon Jesus Christ, our Rock, we will continue to stand steadfast.

Nothing Can Stop The Kingdom of God

It is just amazing how many things can be done from the home today! So many of us thought that we needed a special building or an office to get “real work” done. However, combining the pandemic with technology, we have suddenly realized that many tasks once considered almost impossible to accomplish without leaving the house, today can be successfully carried out right from our homes. Since March, we have been leading several weekly Bible studies from our home, recording Bible School classes, transmitting our church services, doing counseling, praying for people, and just about everything else from home. It has truly been an interesting season, and something I would have never imagined. Yet, we’ve found that most aspects of ministry continue to be just as effective or perhaps even more productive than when we were able to constantly meet in person. And although we long for the day when so many limitations on personal and corporate gatherings won’t be necessary, still we realize that history has in some ways taken a bend in the road, and that the world we knew before March, 2020, may never be the same. How should we respond? We simply need to adapt!

One of the more interesting aspects of ministry since August has been with our Online Bible School. We began our fall semester in August with around 170 students. About 40 of those students are studying homiletics – the art of preaching. After receiving lectures on the subject during August and September, we moved into the more practical aspects at the beginning of October. Each student must prepare and deliver three sermons live, using a video conferencing platform. Their facilitators and classmates join the live stream to watch, listen, and evaluate their sermons and delivery. When they finish, we give them time to make constructive comments, and then send in an evaluation form, which is delivered to both the student who preached, and the course facilitator. What a varied group we have! Some are pastors with years of experience, yet they have never studied this topic. Others are young people, college students, older church leaders and even children’s church teachers. It has been a joy to see them, hear them preach, and give them direction as they continue to hone in on the skills required to effectively communicate the Word of God to an audience, be it in a church service, a small group, a classroom, or an online setting.

Our church continues to meet online. Although technically it is possible to meet in a very reduced capacity at this moment in our area (and some churches are), we have made the decision to continue for the time being mostly online. Legally, we would only be able to have in-person services with about 25 people in our building, and no children or senior citizens would be allowed to attend. I felt that it is much more practical to continue to invest our time and resources in online and remote ministry, as we are reaching many more of our people in this form. We know of other churches that began in-person meetings, but they were only able to do it for a few weeks, and then had to go back to online-only, because of an increase in COVID-19 cases in their areas.

Can the church continue on its mission to extend the Kingdom of God and make disciples during this season? I definitely believe we can! After all, we are the church; we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. The true church of Jesus Christ has never been a physical building. It has always been a group of people who have been redeemed by Christ and who gather in His name, working to make disciples and to extend His kingdom. This is something we can and should continue to do, whether we’re in the middle of a pandemic, a natural disaster, or persecution. The Word of God will continue to flow forth and the Kingdom of Heaven will continue to expand!

I want to thank each of you who continues to pray for us and support us. I know that things have been difficult just about everywhere during the past half year, but God continues to be faithful. And Sara and I wish to express our most sincere thanksgiving to you.

With love,

David and Sara Lont

Update – August, 2020

You can download a copy of this newsletter in PDF format here:

Hello, friends and family!

We hope you’ve had a good summer. I’m sure it’s been a bit different than a “normal” summer, since we’re in the middle of the pandemic, but summer is always a wonderful season. Here in our area, this is the rainy season, and we’re enjoying cool weather, sunny mornings, and rainy afternoons and nights. We’ve had around seven inches of rain since the month of August began, and the fields are a beautiful shade of green.

Online Bible School

As you probably know, our Online Bible School is one of the projects we spend quite a bit of time on. The last time I wrote to you, we were finishing our Spring semester. Now, we’re about to start our Fall semester. Enrollment is currently open, and we will begin classes on August 19.

Over the last couple of weeks I taught and recorded the material for our new homiletics course. (For those who don’t know, “homiletics” is a fancy word to describe a course on how to preach.) I taught 18 lessons on the subject of how to write sermons and preach, and these lessons will cover the first 7 weeks of the course. The remaining 8 weeks will be used to have our students practice what they have learned by preparing messages and preaching in front of their peers and facilitators live via Zoom. The students will be evaluated both by their peers and their facilitators, and will be receiving constructive feedback. It should be a very interesting experience!

We will also be offering several other courses, including Old and New Testament Surveys (4 courses), The Life of Christ and Systematic Theology.

We’re looking forward to starting once again! Several students have already signed up, and I’m sure many more will register for their courses over the next week or so.

It is such a blessing that we had prepared this Bible School several years ago to be totally online. We don’t have to worry about canceling in-person classes, and we can accept students from just about anywhere around the world!

Local Church Ministry

Since the middle of March, we had to cancel our normal church services due to the pandemic. We immediately moved everything online, using a combination of YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Zoom, WhatsApp, and our own website to reach our people. Our state is still basically under stay-at-home orders, as the Covid-19 numbers continue to rise. We can only drive our car 3 days a week: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. The local hospital here in Tulancingo is completely full and is sending patients to seek medical help in other cities. It looks like we won’t be going back to in-person services at our church possibly for the rest of the year.

However, online ministry has given us the unique opportunity to reach people that normally wouldn’t be reached by our church, including the extended families of some of our church members, some of which live in other cities and states.

We recently had a family over for an outdoor online service.

We had a good series of classes on parenting in June and July, connecting with parents using recorded teaching on YouTube, then question and answer sessions using Zoom.

Besides our Sunday services, we are also doing small group ministry on Zoom and Google Meet, with a special emphasis on growing in love, unity, communication and personal ministry. We start with a group activity, move into Bible Study, then finish with a time of personal ministry. We are calling these groups “Connect Groups”. We started last Wednesday, and our congregation is really excited about participating. We currently have seven different groups, and each group has between 10 and 20 members.

Our Family

Our son, David Jeremiah, has been working at Lowe’s during his summer break. He will be continuing with his last three semesters at Western Michigan University. Daniel is in Portland, Oregon, where he is studying at Portland Bible College. He has been working in the school offices with their online Bible School program, and he took a second job at Amazon. During this summer, he sometimes worked over 70 hours a week!

Daniel, leading worship in his church online

Anna is doing well here at home with us. She has been a great help in ministry, sometimes singing and playing the piano for our services, writing devotional material and teachings, proofreading our online Bible School material, and more recently, doing graphic design. She will be starting 12th grade in about a month. Anna is a great Bible teacher, and she has her own Connect Group on Wednesday nights.

Sara continues to work with me as a team. Sometimes we teach together; at other times, she helps by participating in our online services, proofreading material for the Bible School, and helping in so many areas. She is such a big blessing for me and for the church! She is also hosting and leading probably the largest of our Connect Groups online.

Life is busy during this pandemic, but we are enjoying it. We’re working pretty much 100% from home and have converted the living room of our cabin into a video recording studio. I am writing from one of the bedrooms where I have my little office. Who’d have thought? Remote ministry from a cabin!

Thanks for your prayers and support!

We are so thankful for those who continue to pray and support us each month. It is wonderful to know that we have a group of intercessors and partners who stand by our side and help us to effectively reach many people each week with teaching and ministry from God’s word. Thank you!

Update – June, 2020

Hello, friends and family.

Picture of David and Sara Lont

What a different season this has been! Just a few months have passed since most of the world has gone into chaos, but it seems like it has been much longer. We certainly hope and pray that you have been well during this time in which COVID-19 has spread literally across the globe, affecting both the health and the economy of most nations.

We are happy to report that we have all been pretty much well after a bit of a rough start this winter. You may remember that in February and March we all had Typhoid Fever. That’s pretty much over, although the effects tend to linger and come back every now and then. But we’re thankful for health!

Right now there are many people sick and dying here in our country. We know of several pastors who have died of COVID-19, including one who was a personal friend over the last 23 years. He went to be with Jesus this past Saturday night, June 13, leaving behind a wife, a son, and an influential church in the city of Puebla.

The country is beginning to reactivate the economy, opening businesses and getting back to a supposed “new normal”, even as the infections and death rates soar in many communities.

We plan to be very cautious during the next few months, continuing with our online work with the local church and avoiding large gatherings. There may soon be official permission to open some churches, but we feel led to continue to invest online with our people and perhaps open only small groups in homes, if that becomes a possibility later on.

Our experiences with online ministry

Over the last few months, we’ve ministered extensively online. Each week we do our online service via YouTube with a decent turnout. Although we pre record and produce our services usually on Fridays, they go live at 10:00 AM on our YouTube channel Sunday mornings. This allows us to maintain the experience of everyone gathering their families together to be a part of the service at 10:00 AM Sunday mornings, and yet gives us the flexibility and quality of a well produced program.

Over these last few months I’ve seen so many smaller churches here in Mexico place a cell phone in the back of their auditorium and try to reproduce the “live” church experience in this way on Facebook, but most obtain a very low quality production and ministry experience. Right from the start, we decided on producing the highest quality content and ministry experience we can, using the resources we have available.

One of the things I’ve really enjoyed is being able to “connect” with our congregation on Sundays, even though we’re actually ministering in front of a camera on Fridays. There is truly a spiritual connection that can take place, transcending time and physical location.

We’ve also enjoyed very interesting times of worship utilizing members of our worship team. Although we haven’t been physically together in one location to play and worship, many times I’ll ask for the participation of two or three members of the worship team who then record their own parts in their homes using their cell phones. They send me the videos, and I put everything back together. It’s really amazing how this can work! (You can have a look at how this comes together by playing a little of the video below.)

On Wednesday evenings, we do small groups via Zoom video conferencing software. Just a couple of months ago, barely anyone even knew what “Zoom” was, and now many people in our congregation use it regularly to meet for Bible study and fellowship. We’ve also done online counseling with several people, helping them sort through their marriage or personal situations.

New opportunities

The pandemic has brought many problems, but God uses what was meant for evil and turns it for good!

People coming to know Christ

Even during this time, people are coming to know Christ! In our church, there is one family in particular, that has been able to bring the gospel to their family members in Mexico City via our online ministry. Several of them have given their lives to the Lord during the last couple of months and now meet weekly in our online groups.

Remote ministry

I’ve also had the opportunity to minister to another congregation in Mexico City via Zoom, thanks to Pastor Raúl Méndez. What a privilege to minister simultaneously in over 70 homes scattered throughout Mexico City, and to be able to see each family as they participated in the meeting!

Anna’s online devotionals

Anna continues to teach her little group of adolescents online every Friday, and she also started a devotional blog which many people have been reading. There is one lady in our church who has been using Anna’s devotional material to present the Gospel each week to her coworkers in an online Bible study that she started. (You can have a look at Anna’s site here. Sorry, but it’s all in Spanish.)

Anna’s online devotional blog

Parenting classes

Sara and I also recently started an online parenting class for the families in our church. It will run for a total of 6 weeks, meeting online Monday nights. First, we present 1/2 hour of material in video via YouTube, then 1/2 hour in a question and answer session live on Zoom. I’ve also prepared beautifully formatted written material for each session, including lesson notes and some questions for each couple to discuss together. That material is delivered by email. This past Monday we had our second session, and it is going well.

Online Bible School

We are in the final two weeks of our Online Bible School courses, and around 150 students are currently taking their partial and final exams. We’ve had a good semester. The great majority of the students will successfully finish the semester with a grade of 80% or higher.

The nice thing about this project is that it was designed to work entirely online and has been going strong for several years now. So when the virus came around a few months back, we really didn’t have to make any major adjustments. Actually, the only minor adjustment I made was to eliminate the break we normally had to take for a week of vacation during Easter. All vacations were canceled because of the quarantine, so we were able to “plow straight through” and finish the semester a week early.

For the last several months, all three of us (Anna, Sara and I), have been working on courses. Sara has been facilitating a course on the Holy Spirit, I’ve been producing the reviews, quizzes and exams, and Anna has been my proofreader, finding and fixing all the little errors. We’ve also had our team of about nine other course facilitators working with us.

Thanks so much for continuing your support!

We are so very thankful to each of you who continues to give and support us during these most difficult economic times. We are definitely facing some challenges financially, as many people are. The lack of our physical presence in our church building has impacted our ministry finances, but the Lord has and will continue to sustain us, the work of the church, and other areas of ministry.

Our prayer is that you and your family would be blessed in abundance, even during challenging times such as these, so that you can continue to bless and reach out to others with the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Update – March, 2020

Hello, friends and family!

I know that most of you are probably confined to your homes right now; we also are! However, it has been a very busy time for us, even while working from home. I wanted to get this update out to you sooner, but several things had prevented me from doing so, including illnesses in February and the beginning of March, and more recently, a rapid migration to online church services.

Advanced School of Ministry

The last week of January was our Advanced School of Ministry conference in Cuernavaca. The meetings were very good with a good attendance (around 1,000 pastors and leaders), great teaching, worship and prayer times, and a wonderful atmosphere of the presence of the Lord. We were blessed to be a part of many aspects of the conference once again, including handling the registrations, compiling, writing and editing the teaching material, producing the student notebook, translating and publishing a book on the Holy Spirit, and teaching at the conference.

Sara, teaching on the “Attributes of God” at the Advanced School of Ministry conference

Our daughter, Anna, was in charge of translating the book The Holy Spirit Today, by Dick Iverson. She did a great job and worked on it during almost half of the year. I did the final editing and layout, and our son, David, did the cover design. Sara was my proofreader and helped us get all the little errors and typos out before going to print. It is wonderful to have a family that works on projects like this together!

Recording for our Online Bible School

Shortly after the conference, our friend Mark Simpson, who is a great Bible teacher and missionary, came to record our newest course for the Online Bible School. The Person and the Ministry of the Holy Spirit, as we have called it, takes student on a study of who the Holy Spirit is, what He does, and how we can relate to Him.

Recording Mark Simpson at our church

Mark did a great job teaching 24 classes in four days. What a marathon!

During the afternoon of our third day of recording, I started running a fever. That night, I went to the doctor, and after doing a blood test, we discovered I had Typhoid Fever. That put me “out of the game”, so to speak, for the rest of the recording. Thankfully, we could count on Anna and Zabdi, another young girl in our church, to finish the recording sessions without me. I felt really sorry to suddenly disappear and leave Mark to do things without me, but I really didn’t have a choice. (Sorry, Mark.)

In spite of all this, we got the entire course recorded and all the sessions edited, uploaded and processed in time for the start of the semester, which was on March 4.

Taking Time out to Recover

I had to use the last couple of weeks of February and the first part of March to get some much needed rest and recover from Typhoid Fever. During this time, Sara and Anna did a great job filling in for me at church.

Sara, Anna and Alejandra, ministering together to our church on a Sunday morning

I ended up missing church for two Sundays in a row. That was pretty incredible! However, even during those weeks I continued to work with our online Bible School, getting things ready for the start of the semester.

We also missed the planning meeting for the Advanced School of Ministry which was held during the first week of March. We were very much looking forward to this time, especially being with Bill Brown and his wife, in warm, sunny Acapulco, right on the ocean.

A couple of weeks ago, Sara and Anna also were tested for Typhoid Fever, and both of them also had it! We’ve all been through treatment and are recovering, little by little. I am finally feeling quite a bit better, although still a little weaker than normal.

Life in Quarantine

Covid-19 has affected almost the entire world! Here in Mexico, few people even knew much about it in January and throughout February, but during the last couple of weeks that has all changed. We are several weeks behind what everyone in the U.S. is experiencing, but the reality of the impact of this pandemic is finally starting to sink in here in Mexico.

A couple of weeks ago, some of the major schools began to close and only offer courses online. Then an official statement came from the government, asking everyone to self-quarantine by remaining home. All group meetings are canceled, restaurants are closing, and all schools are canceled.

We have been working hard to move our church services and meetings online during the last couple of weeks. We’ve done two Sunday services this way so far, and both have had a good online attendance. But I must admit, it is much harder to try to pastor a church without seeing the people personally! We continue to work to make personal contact with our people via messages, phone calls and Skype calls.

Our Online Bible School continues forward without any interruptions. We have over 150 students taking courses right now, and since everything is already online and all the students and facilitators work from their homes, there has been no problem continuing forward with this ministry. In fact, many of the students now have more time to study online with us, since so many other activities are canceled.

Thanks so much!

We definitely understand what so many of you are going through right now. There are so many people without jobs in a failing economy, but we also believe that God will provide for you and for us during this season!

We pray that the life-giving power of Jesus Christ would fill and sustain each of you in both health and economy as we go forward proclaiming the Gospel and teaching the Word of the Lord.

In His love,

David and Sara Lont

Update – January, 2020

Note: You can download this update as a printable PDF file here.

Happy New Year!

Hello, family, friends and supporters. Happy New Year! We hope each of you has had a great start to the year and enjoyed the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.

I’d like to take a moment to share a few things that have been going on with us.

Sorry I’m not in the picture, but it seems like I’m the one always taking the pictures!

Wrapping Up The Semester

Our Online Bible School semester ended the second week of December. We had just over 150 students who completed their semester with us and most of them did very well in their studies. The end of a semester is a busy time, both for students and faculty. The students did reviews and studied for final exams, while the faculty was responsible for answering questions, grading exams and getting the final grades posted.

It was a very profitable semester for all of us. I’m sure many of the students are already using the material we’ve given them in their own ministries in local churches around the nation.

It is also great to have a little break from the everyday work with the students. Now it’s time to get new course material ready, as we’ll soon be opening registration for the spring semester which will start in February.

Advanced School of Ministry

November and December are always busy months for us, as this is the time when I work on material for our next big conference, which will be held the last week of January. My jobs include editing each speaker’s material, writing my own material, forming the conference notebook, handling online registration, conference promotion/advertising, on-screen conference presentations, and a host of other activities.

Our daughter Anna did another book translation, and I did the layout and editing of that book as well. Everything has been sent off to the printers now, so this part of the work is finished. This book will be a homework assignment for those studying the degree program.

Church Activities

We wrapped up our church year with several Christmas celebrations, including a service with the participation of the children’s ministry, a Christmas lunch, a Christmas dinner for our small groups, and a special service which included testimonies of God’s goodness throughout the year.

The participation of the children singing in a special Christmas service
Some of the children with Sara at their Christmas celebration

Now we are beginning a new series of Wednesday night meetings in small groups. These discipleship groups will be studying the parables of Jesus together, and learning the practical and spiritual lessons Jesus taught in each parable.

Christmas and New Years

What a blessing it was to have our son David Jeremiah with us for Christmas. We missed Daniel, as he had to stay in Oregon this Christmas, but we enjoyed being with David and Anna. We had a simple but nice Christmas with our family.

Ready for Christmas Eve dinner, December 24, 2019

David returned to Michigan on January 31, and we spent New Year’s Eve with friends from church. We had a great time with them and enjoyed a meal of homemade pizza.

Thanks for partnering with us!

Sara and I would like to say “thanks” to each of you who prays for us, gives, or is somehow involved in our lives. We appreciate each of you.

We pray that the Lord would abundantly bless you with His wonderful grace, health and provision during this new year. May you have 20/20 vision to see His good plans and purposes!

Update – November, 2019

Dear friends, family and supporters,

We’d just like to take a moment to update you on our activities over the last couple of months. God is so good! We have been enjoying His presence, His people, and the work that He has placed under our care.

Mexican Independence Day

Taken on Mexican Independence Day

September 16 is Independence Day in Mexico, but by tradition, most celebrations take place the evening before. September 15 was a Sunday, so we enjoyed a typical celebration after our church service with those of the congregation who decided to stay and celebrate with us. We all enjoyed eating a variety of traditional Mexican foods and playing some of the old Mexican-style games together.

Advanced School of Ministry in Houston

The following Monday, we took a plane to Houston for the Advanced School of Ministry seminar there. We spent about a week with some of the pastors and leaders in the Hispanic community in Southern Houston, teaching a seminar on finances.

We arrived in Houston just as a tropical storm moved in, and there were several flash food warnings in area. As we taught, the flood alarms would go off every few hours (a bit distracting, I must admit) and we’d look out the windows of the little church to make sure we weren’t surrounded by water yet. One of the afternoons, several of the people couldn’t get back to where they were staying, so they had to stay at the church. We are happy to report that the water never reached the church, and the Lord took care of all of us during those days of heavy rain.

Sara, teaching at the seminar in Houston

God is good, and we enjoyed teaching, worship and the presence of God. We also enjoyed meeting new people, some with a real hunger for God. It was a blessing to work with our team members Pastor Jacobo and Pastor Humberto during the seminar.

Team Retreat

The first weekend of October we did a team retreat at a hotel in Real del Monte (the mining village where Sara was born), which is a picturesque town founded by Cornish miners, located about an hour from Tulancingo. We dedicated two full days to worship, prayer, Bible study, teaching and team-building activities. We enjoyed great fellowship, food, and above all, we had a really good time learning together in God’s presence.

Two of the couples that went with us on the retreat

We were a total of 10 people who play key roles in our local church in this moment, including our daughter, Anna, who is 16, and Zabdi, the 14 year old daughter of Carlos and Shaddai García (leaders in the church), who has a wonderful heart for prayer and worship. It was definitely the best retreat we have done! There was so much good ministry among the team members, as we prayed for one another, worshiped together and worked to build a team vision.

We came home a bit tired after two intense days, but very blessed and pleased with the results. I believe that God has united our hearts with those who are serving together with us, and that this retreat has been a great encouragement to this team and by extension, to the local church.

Translations, Bible School and Seminars

This is the time of the year that I spend many hours working on material for the Advanced School of Ministry and the Online Bible School. I just finished work on a 160 page manual for a course I plan to record soon for the Bible School. Sara and Anna are participating as course facilitators, and together they are working with about 70 students each week, which is almost half of all our online students.

I have begun work on our next Advanced School of Ministry notebook manual (150+ pages), Anna is translating a book by Pastor Dick Iverson (which I am editing and formatting after she does the translation), and we are also constantly writing new teaching material for our church. As you may have inferred, we are keeping very busy.

We always have time for everything.

One thing that I have often stated throughout the years is that I always have time for everything. When I say that, I mean that we always make time for the things that are really important for us. I believe that God has given us time to do all the things that He wants us to do. The key here is to do His will, and not just fill our lives with “busyness”, or things that drain us of time and energy.

Remember the story of Mary and Martha? Martha was so busy, always doing many “things” for Jesus, while her sister, Mary, sat at His feet to hear His voice. We must not forget that Jesus said that Mary chose the better part.

So when I say that I always have time for everything, spending time with Jesus is definitely part of my daily schedule. Is it a part of yours?

Thanks!

Sara and I really appreciate those who follow our ministry, read our letters, pray for us and support what we do. We’re participating in the Kingdom of God together. Thanks, and keep up the good work!

In His Love,

David and Sara Lont with Anna

Update – Summer, 2019

Download this as printable PDF.

Hello, friends, family and supporters.

Wow! Summer has gone by so fast. We sure hope you have enjoyed it… trips to parks, family outings, picnics, enjoying the nice weather, ice cream 🍦. We had a good summer and enjoyed some time off from our “regular” work for a couple of weeks this summer.

Trip to Michigan

We spent about two weeks in Michigan at the end of June and beginning of July. It was wonderful to be able to get away and see our family, spend some time together and simply “relax”. We were also able to visit Fellowship Church in Grandville and meet several of the people who have been faithful supporters of our ministry throughout the years.

Our time in Michigan was pretty much planned before leaving Mexico, so we didn’t really have much down time, but we enjoyed spending some time in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and also a few days in Indiana. On the 4th of July, we saw the parade and the fireworks in Grandville. It was the first time our daughter, Anna, had ever been to a 4th of July celebration. We also ate hamburgers together that day. Our son, David Jeremiah, was able to join us for the long 4th of July weekend, so that made it special, too.

We also enjoyed getting together with aunts, uncles and cousins for a family gathering. It was so neat to reconnect with some of them after so many years of being away. Anna met cousins she didn’t even know existed, and now communicates with some of them on social media.

Online Bible School

Our final exams actually took place while we were in Michigan, so we had to keep up with our students and course facilitators while there. Most of the 150+ students who were enrolled were able to successfully complete their courses.

After returning to Mexico at the beginning of July, we had a few weeks to work on other projects before opening up the course registration for our fall semester, which began on August 21.

Online Bible School

Right now we have over 160 students enrolled who are taking Bible classes online with us. We are currently teaching courses on Old Testament Survey, New Testament Survey, Systematic Theology, The Life of Christ and The Acts of the Apostles. We plan to soon offer several other courses, as well. So far we have been adding one new course per semester, with the goal of forming a complete online Bible School program.

You may be wondering who are students are and where they live and work. We have students from many areas, although presently most live in Mexico. We have a few students in the U.S., and have had others from Argentina. Many of them are lead pastors in some of the main cities of Mexico, others are assistant pastors, elders, worship leaders, Children’s Church and Sunday School leaders/teachers, and some others are young people who want to grow in their walk with the Lord and knowledge of God’s Word. Some live in the larger cities and towns, while others are from small villages far from the main cities. They are from all age groups and walks of life, from young junior high and high school students all the way up to retired adults 65+ years of age. Some are educated and hold a Master’s Degree, while others are older adults with little formal education. But the common thread that unites them all is their interest in studying God’s Word and principles for daily life, and their calling to serve the Lord.

Our prayer is that these courses will teach many thousands of believers who will then go forth with the Great Commission, making disciples, strengthening the believers, and raising up churches.

Local Church Ministry

Over the summer we have also constantly been active preaching, teaching, discipling, counseling, leading worship and sowing into the lives of others in the context of personal ministry and the local church. Our Wednesday night discipleship meetings are going very well and growing. Our Sunday worship services are very much alive with an expectancy for God, and our worship team is hungering for more of God’s life and presence among us. We recognize our need to be a people who long for God’s Word, His presence and His anointing. We long to be a church of personal meaningful relationships, both on a horizontal and a vertical level.

Sara is now working closer with the children’s ministry and we’re believing for new fruit there. Anna continues to minister to the adolescent girls each week and has become an excellent teacher of God’s Word.

Anna with some of the adolescent girls doing a camping night

God has opened the doors to have weekly meetings at a rehabilitation center for alcoholics. One of our leaders, Carlos, who many years ago was in one of these centers, has become the main leader of this group, sent by our church. They have services every Monday from 7:00 P.M. to 10:00 P.M. freely preaching the Gospel. Many of these men and women are learning about Christ and His power to set them free from addiction. This ministry has also become a great opportunity for several of the men and women in our church to make a difference, sharing the gospel there and providing the spiritual and emotional support needed to help these alcoholics win the battle over addiction.

Our greatest need at the moment is to build a strong leadership team in our church. We understand that we can’t do everything, and the we need the help, support and strength that a team brings. Please pray for us and the church in this area. We are praying for leaders with a united heart, mind and soul, a leadership team that will take our church to the next level.

A ladies’ meeting in June at our church

Our Family

It has been a very interesting last couple of years in terms of family life. David and Daniel moved out in the spring of 2017 to attend college in the United States. During their summers, they have to stay in the U.S. to work for their tuition costs, so we have mostly seen them only during Christmas break.

However, Sara was able to take a trip in May to spend a few days with Daniel as soon as school was out for him. She sure did enjoy that trip! We also spent a few days with David while in Michigan in June. He showed us around the university campus, which is huge! It was the first time we had been to his school since he began college over two years ago.

Anna is now in 11th grade. She has been homeschooled since kindergarten and really enjoys her studies. She is an excellent writer, teacher, and speaker, with a true sensitivity to the Holy Spirit.

We spend our mornings in the cabin here in the mountains. Anna works on her school, and Sara and I work on the online Bible School, communicating with students and preparing teaching materials for church. Sara has been a great help with the online Bible School, and she spends many hours reading homework assignments, grading the students’ work and writing to them. We spend many of our afternoons and evenings in church activities. Mornings are mostly quiet but busy, and several evenings each week we gather with different church groups.

Thanks Again!

We are so thankful for our friends and supporters who help us through prayer and financial support. Thanks so much for remembering us and praying for us. We also continually give thanks to God our Father for you, and pray that you may be filled with the knowledge of His saving grace.

Have a great week!

David and Sara Lont

Update – May, 2019

Download this update as a PDF file.

Dear Friends, Family and Supporters,

We hope you’ve been enjoying the spring, and summer is almost here. In our area, we’ve had one of the warmest and driest spring seasons in several years. The farmers who depend on the rains to grow their crops desperately need rain. Normally, by this time of the year you will start to see green fields with small corn plants beginning to grow. However, this year most of the fields in our area are empty, dry, brown and dusty. We have some flowers in pots outside the house, but to keep them healthy and well, I need to water them every couple of days.

The plight of the fields reminds me of the condition of so much of the population here in Mexico and the world. Dry hearts and lives without Christ will never produce good fruit. Man’s best attempts to reform society and change humanity are destined to fail without divine intervention. This world needs Jesus Christ, and part of our job is to take His streams of Living Water to these dry and weary lands.

Our Church Family

Anna, teaching a small group of a Wednesday night.

The church in Tulancingo is doing well. We have been making a few minor adjustments in terms of leadership in some areas, and I believe we will soon be seeing even more fruit. The worship team has been attracting more young people, and I believe this will have a positive influence on the entire congregation. Our children’s ministry is also in the process of adjustments and renovation, and our Wednesday evening services are now more focused on discipleship in small group settings, working in different tables within our auditorium. Several young people, including our daughter, Anna, are leading these groups. We are excited to see what God is doing in the church.

Some of the children in the Kid’s Ministry

Online Bible School

Our Online Bible School continues to gain momentum. As I shared in our last update, we formed a new course on the Life of Christ with the help of Bible teacher Mark Simpson in February. In June Pastor Homero Ríos will be coming to help us record a course on the Acts of the Apostles, and Pastor Jonás Fernández is recording a course on the work of the Holy Spirit. We continue to advance toward our goal of creating a full curriculum Bible School program where students will be able to enroll full time or part time and word toward the goal of a Bachelor’s degree in Theology, in conjunction with the Advanced School of Ministry.

Marriage Ministry

A couple’s breakfast where Sara and I ministered.

We’ve also had the opportunity to minister in other churches, especially in the area of marriage ministry. Sara and I have enjoyed teaching at couple’s banquets in Mexico City and also in a small town called Zacaultipan. Next week Saturday we’ll be doing another one in Tlapanaloya, which is about an hour from here. Sara and I enjoy teaching Biblical concepts which can strengthen marriages. I believe that this is one of the areas in our society that needs to be “watered” by the Lord, as the entire concept of marriage is under attack here in Mexico. We desperately need to return to what the Bible says about the covenant of marriage. There are so many broken homes, broken families and broken lives. However, when a couple begins to practice Biblical principles, this brokenness can begin to mend.

Family Life

Our family is doing well. Our son David Jeremiah is working this summer as an assistant in the fluids lab with PhD students. He was very excited about this new summer job, as he can apply the concepts he’s been learning. Daniel has just finished his second year of Bible School at Portland Bible College and will be working throughout the summer there. Anna is almost finished with 10th grade and plans to work with me on our online Bible School during the summer, helping to create online reviews, tests and other course material. She will also start working on another book translation.

Anna, teaching a Bible lesson to a few adolescent girls at a picnic outing.

Sara just returned from a short trip to see Daniel and was able to spend several days with him last week. We also plan to see David and my dad and mom briefly this summer. Time goes by so quickly, and we want to take advantage of every opportunity. The work of the ministry is very important to us, but we also want to invest some time in our family, as this keeps our relationships strong.

Thanks!

Once again we’d like to thank you for your love, prayers, and constant support. It is a huge blessing for us to count on you to love us, pray for us, and support us. Remember, every seed we sow into the Kingdom of Heaven will reap eternal rewards!

Have a blessed month of June!

In His Love,

David and Sara Lont

Update – March, 2019

You can download a PDF version of this update here.

Dear friends, family and supporters,

What a great year we have had so far! It has been an incredibly busy but rewarding couple of months, both with our family and ministry. The purposes of God’s Kingdom have been advancing and we are believing God for even more in the months to come.

Advanced School of Ministry Seminar

The month of January of each year is the time in which we do the Advanced School of Ministry seminar in Cuernavaca. As I am writing this, I realized that we have been involved in this conference for about 25 years, first, helping out by interpreting some of the conferences, and later on with a leadership role. I now take on much of the responsibility of making many things happen on the practical side, so that everything flows smoothly. Among other things, I take care of preparing the student and master notebooks, the visual projections, most of the advertising for the event, get the attendees registered, and together with our team, help make the decisions regarding the future of this ministry.

Interpreting for Pastor Jonathan Wilkins

This year marked a new milestone for us with the conference, as we moved it to a new location with much better and larger facilities. The newer Centro Cristiano auditorium is located just outside the city of Cuernavaca and has a much larger seating capacity and space for parking, restrooms, eating areas, etc. It was much more comfortable for everyone, as we all fit into the auditorium with much room to spare.

Around 1500 people showed up for the meetings, most of which are either pastors, leaders or somehow involved in ministry in local churches across the nation of Mexico. The attendance has grown over the years, as has the impact of these seminars. Each registered pastor/leader receives a book full of strong biblical and practical teaching materials he/she can use within the context of the local church.

Sara, teaching at the Advanced School of Ministry seminar

Our guest speaker was Jonathan Wilkins, who did an outstanding job teaching many of the practical aspects of leading a church. All of us who are part of the team had our own sessions, and I interpreted for Pastor Jonathan. Our theme was called “Unshakeable”, and we all spoke about the different aspects of God’s word and character which are unmovable and unshakable.

Online Bible School Recordings

Soon after the conference, we were privileged to receive missionary Mark Simpson, who came to record classes for the online Bible School. We had a very busy week with him, as he did 24 classes on the life of Christ (in our little video recording studio), ministered to married couples, leadership, and our local church here in Tulancingo.

Anna and Sara with Mark Simpson

The recordings went great. God recently provided us with the funds for a better computer, software and lighting equipment. It is such a blessing that we now have much better equipment to do the recordings, and it made it so much faster and easier to edit and prepare the videos/audios for the Internet. Mark did an incredible job tirelessly teaching session after session on the Life of Christ. By the time the week was over, I had already finished editing all the hours of video and everything was ready online.

Mark, with one of our couples, Shaddai and Carlos García, before our meeting with couples.

Our local church also received so much from Mark’s time of ministry here. He is a gifted teacher with many years of ministry experience in countries all around the world. He ministered very well to our married couples, leaders, volunteers, and the entire church. Thank you, brother Mark!

New Semester of Online Bible School Courses

As soon as we finished with the recordings, we started classes again with our online students. We currently have around 165 students participating in six courses, including “The Life of Christ” which we just recorded. The students are being attended by nine course facilitators, who correct homework, provide insight when students have questions, and are there to encourage their students. We have plans to record at least two or three more courses this year.

Other areas of ministry

Our local church (now called “Desert Streams Christian Church”) is doing well and growing in many aspects. After sending out the church plant to the community of Jaltepec a year and a half ago, we experienced a time of adjustment, but things are picking up again, and we believe the Holy Spirit is moving in new ways within the congregation.

Ministering at a couple’s dinner in Mexico City

During these last couple of months, we’ve also had the opportunity to speak at two events for married couples and also minister at a church out in the mountains here in the state of Hidalgo. Sara and I have enjoyed these times away from our “normal” activities in our church.

While in Texas, we were able to spend a little time with our friends Dr. David and Juana Hernández, who were down to minister in our church in 2011.

A couple of weeks ago, we flew to McAllen, Texas for our annual Advanced School of Ministry planning time. We enjoyed spending a few days with the team, and especially being with Bill Brown.

Dinner with the Advanced School of Ministry leadership team in McAllen, Texas

Thank you!

We thank each one of you for your participation and support in all we do. Thanks for your prayers, thoughts, notes of encouragement and financial gifts. We really appreciate all you do!

Happy January!

Note: You can download a PDF version of this update here:

Hello, friends and supporters. Here’s our latest update!

We hope you have had a great Christmas season and are getting off to a great start now that it’s 2019. We had a good time this December with our family. Both of our boys were able to come for a couple of weeks to spend Christmas with us. We very much enjoyed being able to see them, since it had been one year since we had been with them. We see each other almost weekly on FaceTime, so we’ve had constant communication, but it’s just not quite the same as being all together in person. We often joke about seeing each other either in 2D (on the flat screen), or 3D (in person). It sure was great to see David and Daniel in 3D after a year of seeing them in only 2D!

Several things have happened here since we last wrote to you. First of all, we took a brief trip to Canada for Gerda Brown’s memorial service which was held the last Thursday in November. Gerda had been a spiritual mother to us for the last 25 years, and it was our desire to honor her and support Bill during this difficult time. I was blessed to play the piano in the memorial service in Edmonton, and we also enjoyed spending several days with Bill.

Our family together with Sara’s father on New Year’s Eve.

December was filled with activities. Both Anna and I were working hard on finishing the material for the Advanced School of Ministry conference. I was finishing the conference notebook, and Anna was working on translating the last chapter of Dr. Frank Damazio’s book called “Seven Declarations For An Unshakable Life”. She finished just before Christmas, and I continued to edit the material and get it ready for printing. While our son David was here, he designed the covers for both of these books. Sara worked hard as my proofreader.

The book on the left was translated into Spanish by Anna. On the right is the cover of our student notebook for this year’s Advanced School of Ministry seminar. David Jeremiah designed both covers.

Also in December, we finished our semester of online Bible School classes. A total of just under 150 students successfully finished their semester of courses. The end of the semester is always a busy time, as I supervise the work of all the facilitators who check final exams and assign the final grades for the courses.

We will be starting our next semester in March, since during February we will be preparing a new course and recording it with missionary Mark Simpson. Mark will be with us for a “marathon” recording session in our little studio, teaching 24 lessons in three or four days, and also ministering to our church on the weekend.

Anna with part of the adolescent group she leads. This picture was taken at a Christmas celebration in December, 2018.

Our Advanced School of Ministry conference, which attracts around 1,000 pastors and leaders, is coming up in a couple of weeks, so we are now working on the last details, registering participants, etc. Please pray with us for a great conference, and also that the current gasoline crisis that several states in Mexico are experiencing will be resolved before the conference so everyone will be able to have fuel for transportation to get there and back.

Thanks for your love, prayers and support. We appreciate you!

In Christ,

David and Sara, and Anna Lont

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