Update – July, 2018

Dear friends, family and supporters,

Happy 4th of July! We hope you are having an excellent holiday today. We’d also like to give you a short update on our family and ministry activities.

Children’s Day celebrations

Since our last update, we have celebrated “Children’s Day” here in Mexico. This is a special day designated to celebrate all the children in the country, and many churches take advantage of this day to organize celebrations and evangelistic events to attract young children and their parents.

Children’s Day celebration at our church

We participated in two events this year. The first was held in the city of Tula, Hidalgo, in a church we have ministered in several times. Our children’s praise and worship group participated, and Anna and David shared a short message with the group.

The second event was at our own church. Our children’s church leaders organized this celebration, and as you can see, the children had a really good time with all the games and activities.

Bible School and Local Church

Cooking for a recent men’s meeting at church

During the months of May and June, we have spent much of our energy and focus on the online Bible School and the activities in our local church. During Sara’s time resting after surgery, I took over her Bible School group for a while. I also continued working on the online software, developing the modules that have to do with accounting, receiving payments, transferring funds, etc. As we look to expand the school, this is going to be a big help, as I had been doing everything manually up to this point.

In June, our group of about 120 students finished their first semester. They are now on a short break before starting classes again August 15.

Anna is helping me preach to the congregation about reaching the next generation.

We have also been focusing on our local church. We’ve been having meetings and study times with some of our leaders, worship practices each week and time to study and prepare for each service. For me it has been especially rewarding seeing Anna grow and mature in ministry. She even preached with me in May about reaching the next generation with the Gospel. My only regret is that Sara wasn’t able to be at that service because of the surgery.

Our Family

As you probably know, our two oldest children, David and Daniel, are both in the U.S. to study. David finished his first year at Western Michigan University and is spending his summer working at a local Starbucks Coffee shop and also helping prepare presentations for the online Bible School. Daniel finished his first year at Portland Bible College and is staying on campus during the summer to work a custodial job at the church and the school. We sure would love to have them here for the summer, but they need to work in the U.S. in order to pay for their upcoming fall tuition bills. Both of them are doing well, and we see them almost weekly via Facetime.

Anna recently finished 9th grade and is spending her summer reading many books, studying some French, and translating one of Pastor Frank Damazio’s books on leadership from English into Spanish.

26 years married!

Sara and I recently celebrated our 26th wedding anniversary. We went out to the town of San Miguel de Allende to celebrate.

Getting ready for Africa

Sara and I will be going to Africa with Anna toward the end of August. We will be involved in a large women’s conference and a pastor’s conference. Anna will be doing some children’s ministry as well. We went to Mexico City a couple of weeks ago to get some of the “hard to find” vaccines that are needed in order to visit Uganda. I ended up getting a slight fever as a reaction to one of the vaccines, but am doing better now.

We are also working on getting together our teaching sessions for the conference.

Please pray for us especially as we prepare for this upcoming trip.

  • For health and protection from illnesses and other dangers
  • For an exact word from the Lord for the pastors and the ladies who will attend the two conferences
  • For a good and blessed trip there and back

Thanks! We appreciate each one of you and pray that the Lord will abundantly bless you and your families. We’ll be in touch again soon. Have a blessed summer.

In Christ,

David and Sara Lont

Ministry Update – May, 2018

Dear friends, supporters and family,

Greetings from Mexico. We pray all is well with you and that you’re enjoying this spring season. It is a joy for us to be in contact once again via our newsletter to let you know what we have been doing during the last couple of months.

Ministry in Veracruz

At the beginning of the month of March we took a trip to the city of Veracruz and also Huatusco where we ministered to a group of leaders of the Centro Cristiano Church there. We spent the first day with the pastors, Gama and Paty, at the hotel where the leadership conference would be held during the next couple of days. There we enjoyed spending some time with them during the afternoon and evening Thursday. On Friday morning, the leaders began arriving around breakfast time. I opened the meetings with the first conference, and both Sara and I shared several times during the Friday-Saturday meetings.

It was very interesting to get to know some of the leaders and see how Pastor Gama and Paty work with them. The weekend was filled with different activities such as meals together, teaching sessions, workshops and games designed to teach people how to work together. We also had prayer, worship, and ministry times.

The following Sunday I preached to the church in the morning. They have a large and solid congregation, and I enjoyed ministering to them once again. We had been there before, in 2016, and on that occasion I had ministered in a men’s conference, and then Sara, in a women’s conference. It was very nice for both of us to minister together this time to leaders. We believe God is building up a solid leadership team for this church.

Online Bible School

We started our online Bible School classes in the month of February, and this semester we have around 125 students from three countries. We are building a team of facilitators and course developers to continue to build the school. I have hired a couple of people (including our son, David) to help develop visual presentations that run alongside of the video and audio. We are also making decisions about new courses, developing the software, building/developing more courses, among other things.

Sara has surgery

Sara had a complete hysterectomy on April 10. This has put her pretty much “out of service” for the last several weeks, as she is recovering. Her recovery is going well but she has been advised by the doctor to slow down and recover completely before picking up the normal pace of life, so as to avoid future complications.

Radical – Anna Starts Our Church’s Preteen Group

Anna started a youth group of preteen girls who meet each week on Friday evenings. She is teaching these young girls who are in the transition phase between children and teenagers. We have found throughout the years that many of the children who grow out of our children’s ministry have had a hard time adjusting to the regular youth ministry, which has focused on older teens. God has gifted Anna to minister to this younger age group and we are seeing very good results. We hope to soon open a second group for the boys as well.

Several of the girls with Anna during a picnic.

We are also excited to see Anna grow and develop in the area of teaching and ministry. She is a gifted teacher and a great speaker. She even took charge of our church’s women’s meeting while her mother was in the hospital!

Local Church

Our local church is going through several transitions in different areas at the moment. I (David) have found the need to become directly involved in the worship ministry again. After sowing part of our worship team last August in the new church plant, our music ministry began to feel the loss. I stepped in during the month of February, then more directly beginning in April.

During the last year I had worked with some of the “younger generation” that had previously been involved in our children’s worship team. I have invited them to be a part of the main worship group, and we are seeing progress! Our daughter, Anna, is now part of the team, and it’s really fun to work with everyone again. I felt impressed by the Lord to train up a new generation in leading worship, and the opportunity has come.

Anna teaching about priorities in the women’s meeting.

Please pray that the team will continue to consolidate and that soon we’ll be able to get them to a level where I’m not quite as “needed” as I currently am. I would love to continue to be involved, but we also need to get the team working by themselves for the times when I need to be out ministering in other churches on Sundays. This isn’t all that often, but we really need things to run smoothly even if we are away.

Prayer requests

You can always help us by praying for us! Here are a few areas of need:

  • Please pray for our leadership team, that God would give us more strong leaders with a heart and vision for the Lord and His church.
  • Please pray for our preteen and youth ministries, that the Lord would allow us to restructure these key areas. We believe that a strong ministry to children and youth is vital for the long-term success of the church.
  • Please pray for the online Bible School, as we plan to expand this project during the next few years. Please pray for our students, that they would learn and grow in God’s Word.
  • Please pray for us as we prepare for a trip to Africa to minister in a large pastor’s conference. Sara will be doing women’s ministry, and Anna has also been invited to do children’s ministry during the conference.

Update – February, 2018

Dear family, friends and supporters,

After a great Christmas with our whole family, we took David Jeremiah to the airport, since he was only able to spend about 10 days with us. Daniel stayed a bit longer, until January 11. We had a very nice Christmas and New Years, and we hope you did, also.

Getting ready for the seminar

Throughout the Christmas season and into January, we worked on getting some details ready for the Advanced School of ministry conference. I finished this year’s student notebook just before Christmas, and Anna also finished translating Pastor Dick Iverson’s book Maintaining Balance When Winds of Doctrine Blow.  This is her second translation, and our team has already asked her to translate another book for next year’s seminar.

We also took care of online registration for the conference as well as signing people up for lodging accommodations in homes of the families of the local church in Cuernavaca.

Appreciation dinner

Our church had our annual Christmas dinner with many families attending. But this year, we also did an appreciation dinner in January to show our gratitude to all those who so faithfully serve in many areas of our church.

Advanced School of Ministry Seminar

The Advanced School of Ministry seminar was again a huge blessing to many pastors and leaders. Nearly 1,000 people from all over Mexico and even some from the U.S. gathered in Cuernavaca for four days of teaching, worship and times of prayer. Our theme this year was “The Wind Blows Again”, and throughout the 17 sessions, we studied Scriptures that relate to the four winds mentioned in the Bible. There are winds which bring refreshing, winds of change and challenge, winds that cleanse, winds that reverse the curse of sin, and winds of the sovereignty of God. The Bible mentions the north, south, east and west winds, and each direction points to certain theological truths that we, as Christians, experience throughout our lives.

Part of the group during a time of worship

The seminar ended with a graduation for some of the students who have completed the Bachelor’s Degree in Theology program offered through the Advanced School of Ministry and Christian International College.

Sara did a wonderful job sharing about the west wind, which comes to “reverse the curse” caused by sin. I taught on the north wind, which is often a cold wind of trials, but the Lord uses it to purify our lives and allows us to see His hand upon our lives more clearly. Also, this year I was asked to be the speaker on graduation night, which was truly an honor.

Online Bible School

The online Bible School program is continuing to progress and grow. For our first semester of 2018, we have around 125 students enrolled. We are currently offering Old Testament Survey, New Testament Survey and Systematic Theology courses via our online certificate program. Each student who successfully concludes the program receives a certificate of completion.

Our plan is to move the school to the “next level” by integrating all the necessary courses to offer a complete two-year Bible School training program. For this to happen, we will need to accelerate the production of our courses and form a team to do the work involved. Please pray with us that the Lord would help us to gather together a talented like-minded team and organize all the details.

Thanks!

Thank you so much for praying for us and giving to our ministry. We really appreciate each of you who is praying daily for us. We also thank those who sacrificially give. You are investing in the Kingdom of God and will receive your reward!

In Christ,

David and Sara Lont
and family

 

Christmas Greetings 2017

Dear family, friends and supporters,

What a wonderful privilege it is to send our greetings to you and your families during this Christmas season. Joy to the world! We pray you will be having a blessed Christmas and New Year.

Advanced School of Ministry in Tijuana

In the month of October, we had the joy of ministering together with Pastor Homero from Monterrey and Pastor Marjorie from Cuernavaca at the Advanced School of Ministry in Tijuana. Our theme in this school was “Covenant Families”, and we taught on many themes that have to do with the family. God loves families, and He established the family as the social foundation of the Church, the ministry, and society.

Advanced School of Ministry in Tijuana

A group of about 70 students from the general area as well as a small group from Mexico City attended this school. We enjoyed four days of teaching, worship, prayer, and fellowship in the building of a local Bible School. This school was built by a group of Korean missionaries, and the couple in charge are Isaac and Rebeca. Groups from Korean churches came daily to donate their time and money to cook and feed the group, so we also had the experience of trying some Korean meals during the conference.

Marriage Seminar in Mérida

A few weeks ago, we spent several days in Mérida at the Centro Cristiano Church, doing a marriage seminar together with the local pastors. We have know this couple for many years, but had never visited their church. Pastor Oscar and his wife, Paula, have worked very hard on the Yucatan Peninsula evangelizing and raising up churches during the past 20 years. We only ministered at the Mérida church, but they also have churches in several other cities across the state and the neighboring state of Quintana Roo.

A group of about 35 couples dedicated two full days to strengthening their marriages through teaching, workshops and other group activities. Sara and I shared during several sessions, and Pastor Oscar and Paula also ministered. Sara and I enjoyed doing some “team teaching”, where both of us shared our distinct perspectives on areas of marriage, family, and Biblical principles for a healthy home.

Standing with a young couple that married in the collective wedding during the conference, together with Pastor Oscar and Paula in Mérida

At the end of the second day, we celebrated a collective wedding for seven of the couples who had been living together but never taken the step of formalizing a marriage covenant in the presence of the Lord. Most of them had come to know Christ recently and desired to received God’s blessing upon their relationship by putting their marriages in order. It was a joy to participate in the ceremony.

Getting Ready for the Advance School of Ministry Seminar

These last few weeks have been a busy time of the year for us as we have been working on the notes for the seminar. Containing almost complete notes for 17 hours of teaching, the book that we produce each year is usually around 150 pages in length. It is my job to take all the notes, edit them and then do the layout and formatting for the final book.

Anna has also been helping us with the translation of Pastor Dick Iverson’s book called Maintaining Balance. She sends me her translation, and I continue to work on it from there, editing as needed to make the phrases flow as best as possible in Spanish. We hope to have this book ready by New Year’s Day and have it printed the first couple of weeks of January so it will be ready for the students at the seminar.

Christmas Plans

We are excited that both of our boys will be coming home from college to spend Christmas with us. David will be with us during two weeks, and Daniel will spend almost a month with us before going back to school. It will be great to have Christmas with the whole family!

Thanks!

We would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to each of you who have been praying for us and supporting us financially. It is so much easier to do ministry with a solid financial and prayer backing. May the Lord richly bless you and your family this Christmas and New Year.

With love,

David and Sara Lont
and family

Ministry update – October, 2017

Dear friends, family and supporters,

We would like to share with you some of our most recent activities. The end of our summer has been very busy but quite productive. Here is an update on what has been happening.

Church plant

We shared with you in our last newsletter about the church plant we were about to make. The team sent out to the new location was officially commissioned and released during a special service on August 13, 2017. Pastor Homero Ríos, from Monterrey, was our guest speaker that Sunday morning, and together we prayed for and ministered to the new pastors with the core seed group.

The following Sunday morning, August 20, I preached in the first service at the new location in Jaltepec. Actually, I preached in both churches – Jaltepec in person, and in Tulancingo, through FaceTime. We haven’t been back to minister there since the first service, but the report from Pastor Gabriel is that the new work in going well.

Recording for Bible School

Pastor Homero Ríos came in August to record systematic theology for our Online Bible School. After ministering in church on Sunday, we spent the following week recording a total of video and audio sessions. He did a wonderful job teaching his subjects. As a Hebrew language scholar and very capable teacher, Pastor Homero’s participation has been a great asset to our theology course.

I also taught and recorded many sessions myself in order to complete the first part of the course. By the time we were finished recording, we already had 24 students signed up to start taking it! Since then, I have also been working on editing the online notes and course work.

Online Bible School

The week on which we recorded was also the enrollment week for our fall semester. We began the semester on August 23 with 122 students, which is the largest group we have had so far. We have students from many states across Mexico, a few hispanic students from the U.S. and a pastor in Argentina. Many of the students know us from the Advanced School of Ministry conferences in Cuernavaca which we do each year.

With the help of six course facilitators, we have been working hard to check homework assignments, help students, and maintain communication with each of them. It has been much work, but at the same time it is very rewarding. It is a tremendous blessing to see many young people as well as older pastors and leaders from many cities and smaller towns enter into a more complete understanding of the Word of God.

Earthquake

I’m sure you probably know about the earthquake we recently experienced here in central Mexico. The earthquake hit on the anniversary of the large earthquake in 1985 which left thousands dead. On Tuesday, September 19, 2017, at about 1:14 PM, there was a magnitude 7.1 earthquake right between Puebla and Morelos, only a few hour’s drive from here. We felt it, although it didn’t do much damage around our area. However, in Puebla, Morelos, and especially in Mexico City there was much damage. In many areas whole houses and large building collapsed.

Just a few days before, there was another very large earthquake in the southern part of the country, that one being of 8.1 magnitude. It destroyed many rural homes and communities in the states of Oaxaca and Chiapas. Then on Saturday, September 23, a 6.1 magnitude rocked the country for a third time.

Many of the churches in the affected areas are now involved in relief and rebuilding efforts. Our church has also been active in donating food, tarps and other supplies to be used in the villages that don’t get much media attention or state funding, but have been devastated by this series of earthquakes.

I personally believe that God is using these events as a “wake-up call” to the country. It is time to seek the Lord, repent, and pray. The Bible says in Hebrews 12:26-27, “At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens. The words once more indicate the removing of what can be shaken–that is, created things–so that what cannot be shaken may remain.” (NIV) It is time for the church in Mexico to arise and proclaim that which is eternal and will remain, even when everything is shaken. We must invest in eternity, in peace with God, in repentance, forgiveness, love, and worship. Man made structures easily fall, materialism will fail, but the Word of God and those who follow it will remain for all eternity.

Xalapa

In September, we had the opportunity to minister in Xalapa, Puebla. Sara shared in a breakfast meeting for women, then I ministered to a group of leaders and to the general congregation on Sunday morning. Sara did a great job speaking to about 200 women present for the breakfast. Pastor Alejandro and his wife were very gracious hosts and we definitely enjoyed being with them. The church is very open and receptive to the Word of God, and I believe our weekend with them was productive.

On our way back home, the car suddenly started making a strange noise. It had rained extremely hard, and we had hit some puddles with enough force that the inside of one of the front wheel wells started to come loose. A piece of plastic was rubbing against the tire. We tried to break it off, but the plastic was too hard to rip by hand. “If only we had a knife”, we said. Just then, Sara looked down, and there at the side of the road, exactly where we stopped in the middle of absolutely nowhere was an old knife! Within a few seconds Sara was able to reach in next to the tire (my hands didn’t fit into the small space) and cut the piece of plastic with the knife. We praised God for His supernatural provision of the exact tool we needed right there on side of the highway, and the we continued our trip back home.

Thanks!

We want to thank each of you who prays for us or gives. Thanks for being partners with us in this great ministry adventure!

In Christ,

David and Sara Lont

Ministry Update – August, 2017

Summer Greetings

We send summer greetings to all our friends, family and supporters.

Our summer has been a bit busy and full of changes. Our family is suddenly smaller! Both of our boys are now living in the U.S. and we only have Anna with us now. Please have a look at what has been going on in our family and ministry since June.

Daniel Graduates From High School

All of our children have been home schooled, but they have also been enrolled in Lighthouse Christian Academy. Through Lighthouse, they have official records and supervision of their work. This has been a tremendous blessing for us. However, all good things do come to an end! Both Sara and I participated in our children’s education for many years (since kindergarten), but the end of high school has arrived. David graduated last year, and now it was time for Daniel.

On June 11, we left on a short trip to Nashville, Tennessee, for Daniel’s high school graduation. Since we had gone also last year for David’s graduation, we pretty much knew what to expect. In the morning on graduation day, we headed to the church for the registration process and pictures. The school provided a very nice breakfast with fruit, cake, croissants, and many other “goodies”. Afterwards, we drove to the offices for a tour of A.C.E and the school. What a beautiful facility the Lord has provided for this ministry! In the afternoon, we dropped Daniel off at the church for practice and then arrived 1/2 hour early to be seated for the ceremony. Around 100 student were present for the ceremony, although many others from around the world also graduated but were not present in Nashville.

We thank God for the wonderful blessing of a Christian education in a homeschool setting. I believe it has been the perfect fit for our lifestyle and work as missionaries and pastors in Mexico.

Our cabin (where we do school) will now be much more empty. Anna and I (David) will be beginning high school together in a couple of weeks.

Daniel leaves for Portland Bible College

Saying goodbye to Daniel at the airport

We came back from the graduation Thursday, spent the weekend on church activities here, and then took Daniel to the airport the following Monday morning because he needed to get to Portland Bible College.

Although he worked here for about a month after finishing school, there was no way that he could earn enough money working here in Mexico to pay for U.S. tuition rates. However, Carlos Marin, from Portland Bible College, offered to help him get into the dorms and start working on campus right away so that he could begin earning money to pay for his schooling.

Daniel has been working very hard all summer in maintenance at the school. Our other son, David has been working all summer in Grand Rapids, Michigan, for his tuition, also. Both of them will be starting school in a couple of weeks.

We believe God is calling Daniel into ministry, so this is an important step in his preparation.

Preparing To Plant a Church

As I mentioned in my last update, we have been feeling that the time to plant a new church has been coming. After speaking about this to one of our leaders and his wife, the Lord has confirmed our vision and opened the doors to make it happen. Gabriel and Silvana, who have been a part of our church and leadership team almost from the beginning, will soon be sent out with a “seed group” to establish the church in Jaltepec, a small town on the outskirts of Tulancingo.

Although the town of Jaltepec itself is quite small, many new residential neighborhoods have been sprouting up over the last several years. There are currently no other churches in the immediate area. We believe that this growing community needs a good church and that we have been called to establish the kingdom of God in this region.

This is the seed group we will be sending to Jaltepec.

This next Sunday, August 13, we will have a special commissioning service to send Gabriel and his family to raise up and pastor the new church, beginning with the “seed group” consisting of several families of our church who will be sent along with them. We ask that you pray for growth and good fruit during these next several months as the church becomes established.

The Lord has already supplied a rented building for the new church just a couple of blocks from the center plaza. The owner of a party hall offered his building for a good price. We went to see the building and were very surprised how well it will meet the needs of the new church.

The inauguration service will be held on August 20, and I will be preaching at the first service. We are excited about what God is going to do in Jaltepec!

Prayer requests

  1. Please pray for our sons, David and Daniel, as both begin college. Please pray that the Lord will help them to keep their eyes and hearts steadfast in Him and for the financial provision they need.
  2. Please pray for Anna as she continues her education here at home.
  3. Please pray for the new church in Jaltepec.
  4. Please pray for safety for us in our travels in the coming months.
  5. Please pray for the anointing of the Holy Spirit as we go forward with the church in Tulancingo. We will be needing new leaders, as several are leaving with the seed group to Jaltepec.

Ministry Update – June, 2017

Dear friends, family and supporters,

Summer is almost here, and with it come many changes. The grass is beginning to grow again, the flowers are blooming and the spring rains have brought new life to the earth. In the area where we live, the corn is beginning to sprout in the fields.

Our summer is also bringing important changes to our family. David Jeremiah, our oldest son, moved to Michigan a few weeks ago, so that he can work this summer and earn money for college. He plans on moving into the dorms at Western Michigan University by the end of August and will be studying aeronautical engineering.

Our second son, Daniel, will be graduating from high school on June 13, and then heading to Portland Bible College the following week to work there this summer, after which he will begin studying a degree in theology in preparation for ministry. Suddenly, our house will be a bit more quiet and empty! We will miss our boys (and Anna will miss her brothers). However, we know that each one of our children must go forward and prepare for their own life calling.

Seasons change and growing up is a part of life. Now that we are talking about seasons, please have a look at some the activities that we have been a part of during this spring season.

Remodeling our auditorium

In the month of April, we had our church auditorium painted and redecorated. It had been several years since the last paint job, and it was in great need of being redone.

We put one of the couples of our church in charge of the decoration, including colors and design. Luis and Jazmin did a wonderful job of coordinating colors, choosing cloth for the ceiling space, and giving the platform a whole new look. We also had the concrete floor repainted. Have a look!

Veggietales in the village of Tlapanaloya

April 30 is Children’s Day in Mexico, and we celebrated by taking our children’s church team to do evangelism in the village of Tlapanaloya, in the state of Mexico, which is a little over an hour driving distance from here. Our team created their own Veggietales costumes of Bob, Larry, Laura and Jimmy. We have some very creative people who worked many long hours to get the costumes ready.

Saturday, April 29, we all headed to the small town of Tlapanaloya to invite the children to the local church for the celebration. Banging of drums, several groups marched around the town passing out invitations and talking with the neighbors.

Our group did a cute sketch with the Veggietales characters, explaining God’s plan for salvation, sang with the children, prayed for them, and then led them in games outside the little church. Once the games were over and the prizes were claimed, dinner was served for everyone on a very long table.

Several new children attended, as well as many who sometimes attend the church. It was a great experience for our team and a blessing for the people of Tlapanaloya.

Children’s Day Picnic

The following day, Sunday, we hosted a church picnic on our property after service for all our children and their families. Each family took their own food and tablecloth or blanket and ate together as a family.

After a time of worship and ministry, I asked all the parents to spend a few moments praying for and ministering to their own children. It was indeed a beautiful thing to see mothers and fathers ministering to the spiritual needs of their families. Our theme came from Joshua 24:15, which says, “…but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”

The Veggietales performed their skit (which wasn’t seen the day before by the majority of our children), and one of our children’s church leaders treated the kids to several hours of her “fair games”, which included a large Jenga-type game, table soccer, bowling, and several others, which are typically found at traditional fairs in Mexico.

Formal Ladies Banquet

We often use the month of May to plan an event for mothers and ladies. On this occasion, Sara organized a formal dinner for the women of our church and several guests. We had Cheli López, a friend and minister from Mexico City, to minister to the women. She did a wonderful job teaching the Word of God.

It took a team of several people and many hours of planning and work, but the event was done with much excellence. I thank God for Sara and the team of ladies that put so much effort into this banquet.

Online Bible School

Online Bible School courses finished this past week, and the final grades were sent out today, June 7. We praise God for around 90 students who participated in Old Testament and New Testament Surveys, as well as our team of six facilitators who graded assignments and maintained contact with each group of students. We will be starting the next semester of classes in August.

Thanks!

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each of you who prays for us or supports us. We appreciate you very much. I believe that we are a team, and together we work to reach the harvest in Mexico. May the Lord bless you abundantly!

David and Sara Lont

Ministry Update, February – March, 2017

Dear family, friends and supporters,

Greetings in the name of the Lord. It is good know and serve our Lord and God Jesus Christ! Here is a brief update on some of our activities over the last couple of months.

Prayer time at the end of our service on Sunday morning

Online Bible Courses

The week of the Advanced School of Ministry in Cuernavaca was also the week that we opened up enrollment for our online Bible School. Classes started on February 8 with four different courses and around 90 students enrolled from three different countries. We are believing the Lord for spiritual growth in all of our students and for new progress during this year as we record courses with some of the teachers of the Advanced School of Ministry Team. Our prayer is that we may reach hundreds of students throughout Latin America and perhaps Spain and other parts of the Spanish-speaking world.

Ministry in Tlapanaloya

Ministering to couples in Tlapanaloya

In February, we went as a family to minister in the small town of Tlapanaloya, where Sara and I preached to married couples. Daniel and Anna ministered the praise and worship, while Sara and I taught the group of around 15 to 20 couples. We spoke on “Marital Harmony” using illustrations from music to describe the type of marriage relationship God has designed for us. We enjoyed ministering to this very receptive group and believe the Word of God will produce fruit in these couples and their families.

Anna and Daniel ministering the worship at the meeting in Tlapanaloya

Visit to McAllen, Texas

Our spiritual mentors, Bill and Gerda Brown, hosted us and the Advanced School of Ministry team in McAllen for a week of planning meetings during the last days of February. We gathered with the team in a conference room to pray, review and plan for next year’s conference. It was a great time of refreshing for us and the team. We now have our plans and theme for the Advanced School of Ministry conference in January, 2018.

Couples coffees

Couples coffee

Over the last several months we have been doing a series of meetings for married couples with an emphasis on Biblical teaching on marriage. We have had many new couples join us for these meetings, and several of them have also come to church on Sundays as a result of these meetings. We are concluding this series in April.

Daniel and Benito ministering the worship

Looking to the harvest

As I have been seeking the Lord and studying, I’ve been feeling that the time of a greater harvest for Mexico is coming. We have been working in the local church for many years now, but we also believe that our local church is called to plant other churches. We believe that the time to do this is coming, so we’re working on plans for evangelism and outreach events in an effort to make this happen.

Our first outreach at this time will be in Tlapanaloya, where we will be doing evangelism with children and their parents in a special event for the children. This will be done in cooperation with the local church that we are helping there. After that, we plan on doing other evangelistic events in a community just outside Tulancingo where we hope to soon plant a new church.

Prayer requests

Please continue to pray for us, our family, and the ministry activities we are involved in. Here are some specific requests.

  • Please pray for the Lord’s direction as we prepare to work on a new harvest and a new church plant.
  • Please pray for our sons, David and Daniel, as they prepare for what the Lord has for their future.
  • Please pray for Sara, as she has been experiencing a few health problems.

Thanks so much for your prayers!

P.S. This update and other information is available online at www.desert-streams.org.

Ministry Update, December, 2016 – January, 2017

Dear family, friends and supporters,

Greetings from Mexico! We are happy to report to you about our recent activities and ministry here in Mexico. Here are a few highlights of what has been going on with us over the last couple of months.

Christmas Dinner and Program

This past December, our church once again put on a small Christmas program and a dinner for the congregation. We rented a large tent that covered the entire parking lot outside, opened up the curtains on the building and used the entire space, both inside and outside, for seating and tables.

We started our service with a few worship songs, after which I gave a short message on the Christmas story. Then it was time for the children to participate.

Our children’s church leaders, Sergio and Andrea, did a good job of organizing a program of songs and small spoken parts, which the children sang and recited. All the parents were so happy to watch their children as they participated in the program. Some of the parents invited other family members to come and see their children perform. The entire children’s church staff worked hard on the scenery and the rehearsals, getting all the details ready.

After the program, we rearranged the auditorium to set up tables both inside and outside for our dinner. Many families participated in the preparation of traditional Mexican Christmas dishes. Thankfully, there was enough food for everyone.

Then, it was time for the piñatas. Colorful piñatas full of treats were suspended in the auditorium, and the children and young people took turns by age group, breaking them open.

Book translation and preparation of material

Also in December, Anna finished the translation of Bill Scheidler’s book. After going through numerous revisions, we sent the book for publishing shortly after Christmas. It was printed and sold at the Advanced School of Ministry conference in Cuernavaca during the third week of January. We congratulate Anna for a job well done.

While Anna worked on the book, I worked on the manuals for the Advanced School of Ministry. We create two versions of this book – one for the teachers and another slightly modified version for the students. The main differences between the two versions is the fact that the student’s version contains blanks for them to fill while listening to the sessions, while the teacher’s version contains the words that go into those blanks, as well as other additional Scripture verses and other information. After more than three months working on these books, we finally sent them for printing the first week of January.

Both the book by Bill Scheidler and the conference manuals turned out very well. Our son, David Jeremiah, designed the cover art for both of them.

Advanced School of Ministry

Soon it was time for the Advanced School of Ministry conference in Cuernavaca. This annual conference for pastors, leaders, and others who serve in local churches all across Mexico, attracted around 1,000 people for almost every state of Mexico and several others for the United States. We had a very good attendance. There were even pastors from Cuba who were able to attend this time. Our theme for this year’s conference was “Ignited in Him”.

Our keynote speaker, Bill Scheidler, did a series of six sessions on topics including the Apostolic Ministry and Ministry Ignited by the Holy Spirit. His book on the apostolic ministry was offered as complementary material and was one of the homework assignments for the students who are working on the bachelor degree program.

We had some wonderful evenings of worship led by two worship bands, one for the local church in Cuernavaca, and the other from a large church in Mexico City. The entire Advanced School of Ministry team participated in the teaching sessions. Even Gerda Brown, who was not able to attend because of health issues, had a “representative” that read her “Spoons full of sugar”, which she annually gives during the conference. The pastors and leaders took home the 200+ page manual, which many of them will be using to train their own leaders and minister in their own churches.

It is a wonderful blessing for us to be a part of this great team and ministry. Now we are looking forward to our annual planning session, which will be held the end of this month. During this time, we will gather with Bill and Gerda Brown and the entire team to pray and plan next year’s conference.

Prayer requests

Please continue to pray for us, our family, and the ministry activities we are involved in. Here are some specific requests.

  • Please pray for the Lord’s hand of blessing and safety on our family. In the midst of much instability in Mexico, we know that the Lord is with us!
  • Please pray for Bill and Gerda Brown and their health issues. Please pray for the supernatural strength and vigor of the Lord upon their lives.
  • Please pray for our sons, David and Daniel, as they prepare for what the Lord has for their future. David plans on attending college in Michigan and Daniel may possibly go to Bible School in Oregon.

Thanks so much for your prayers!

David and Sara Lont

P.S. This update and other information is available online at www.desert-streams.org.

Ministry Update, October – November, 2016

Women’s Conference in Veracruz

On Thanksgiving Day, Sara and a group of about 20 ladies from our church headed to the city of Veracruz for a women’s conference. Sara was one of the guest speakers for the conference together with Pastor Marjorie Mondragón (from the large church in Cuernavaca) and Pastor Paty Mora, of the local church in Veracruz. Together, the three of them ministered to a group of around 500 women who had gathered from several states in the region for a time of worship, prayer, teaching and other ministry.

Sara gave several conferences and her ministry was very well received. Also, the group of ladies who accompanied her were very blessed and came back with a renewed desire to serve the Lord.

Sara sharing in the women's conference in Veracruz, November, 2016
Sara sharing in the women’s conference in Veracruz, November, 2016

Ministry in Querétaro and Monterrey

preaching-in-queretaroSara and I had the rare opportunity to both be ministering at the same time in different cities. Sara preached in Monterrey while I was on a trip to Querétaro. We hadn’t exactly planned it this way, rather we had planned to be together in Querétaro with Pastor Martín Álvarez. However, our son, David Jeremiah, decided to take an entry exam at a university in Monterrey, and Sara went along with him on that trip, which was on the same weekend during which we were supposed to be ministering together in Querétaro.

Our friends and pastors Humberto and Rome Trejo received David Jeremiah and Sara into their home and asked Sara to minister in their church on Sunday. At the same time, I took Daniel and Anna with me to Querétaro and preached there at the church’s anniversary celebration.

Sara and David Jeremiah spend a few days in the area and were also able to take a short trip to the U.S. border, where they had breakfast with our dear friends and spiritual mentors Bill and Gerda Brown.

David Jeremiah with Bill and Gerda Brown outside a restaurant in Texas
David Jeremiah with Bill and Gerda Brown outside a restaurant in Texas

Couples Coffees

jaimecompartiendomatrimoniosOver the last couple of months we have been organizing a series of meetings for married couples with the title “Marriage – Design and Life”. Here’s how they work: Each table in our auditorium has a host couple who is in charge of inviting guests and following up on them. Our church provides the cake and coffee, the youth group is in charge of serving, and our leaders of the setup and teardown. The meetings are held the first Saturday of each month with a focus on building a Godly marriage.

Our first meeting went very well. The auditorium was almost full. Jaime and Aracely Marmolejo, pastors from Mexico City, shared a very animated message from the Word about marriage. They did team teaching, each taking turns on different subjects.

img_1127Our second meeting was held the first Saturday of December, and on this occasion Sara and I shared about the “Family Garden”, a theme comparing the family and marriage to planting and caring for a garden.

In both meetings we had many new couples, many of which had never gone to a church before. We pray that there may be lasting fruit in their lives and that these events continue to serve to advance the cause of the Kingdom of God.

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Serving coffee

Book Translation

Our daughter, Anna, recently completed a book translation which will be printed and used at the Advanced School of Ministry conference in January, as one of the homework assignments. The book, written by Bible teacher Bill Scheidler in English many years ago, is about the ministry of the Apostles. Anna worked very hard on the translation during the months of September, October, November, and part of December. I went through her translation and edited it, but found that she did an incredible job, especially considering that this is her first translation and she is only 14 years old! I’ve had a couple of other people read through it to find errors and make corrections, but Anna has done about as well as any translator I’ve worked with!

David Jeremiah designed the book cover, so in many ways it was a family “team” effort. We pray this book will be a blessing for many of the pastors and leaders who attend the conference next month.