Ben and Natalia, and the Schumann missionary kids,
All praise, honor and glory to our Lord Jesus Christ, the First and the. Last, the Beginning and the End, the Way, the Truth and the Life; the Light of the World; the Word of God; the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the World; our Good Shepherd; our Lord; our King; our friend – JESUS, JESUS, JESUS our all in all!
My precious brother and sister, my missionary companions, I love you, I pray for you, you are on my heart all the time. I admire you and think highly of you and the special apostolate the Lord has called you to. I rejoice in your missionary successes, your faithful witness. I rejoice in the good reports we always receive from those who go down to mission with you in General Cepeda, you and Raul and Marta, with Gallo and Rita, and all our FMC missionaries and faithful friends there with you.
I am always keenly conscious that the Lord has installed you in a very key (maybe the key mission) of Family Missions. Company. It is the mission that all of us have lived and served in; we are all been formed to some degree by mission life in General Cepeda, by our lives with the faithful poor there; we have all prayed and sung God’s praises there, we have carried our crosses there; learning a new language, being sick, dealing with a new culture and sometimes strange or evil things, being lonesome or homesick, “offering it up for the sake of the Gospel.”
You live with Jesus at the center of our Missionary Family – I admire you and our Mexican brothers and sisters there with you!
You receive the scores, hundreds, even thousands of God’s people who come to us to experience what foreign missions is all about on short-term mission trips, to encounter Jesus among the poor, to pray over the sick, to see signs and wonders, opening their sails to the Holy Spirit. They are deeply impressed and blessed by the Lord; these are unforgettable experiences.
People from all over America spend very holy time with you there.
We entrust to you the very important task of caring for FMC’s mission in General Cepeda, caring for the physical house and our Mexican missionaries there, caring for our friends in the ejidos (small dessert villages). It is very important that we preserve the very best relationship with the Bishops of Saltillo and the priests sent to General Cepeda; cultivate and guard these relationships with the pastors and with all the lay ministers who accompany us in our vineyard labors. Develop true ties with the brothers and sisters in the short-term mission groups and all other visitors to the mission house. Get to know government officials in General Cepeda and explore developing friendships with persons in Saltillo and other nearby places – build God’s Kingdom in every way you are able; move in the Holy Spirit.
Rise to the opportunities that come to the mission house “door ministry”, try always to rise to the challenge. FMC has a reputation built over many years of providing friendly, loving hospitality, and help at that door – try to pray with all who come; if someone arrives at your mealtime consider inviting them to share the meal. Give people a ride to the doctor or hospital if they need one. When someone just wants to sit and talk with you or asks your counsel and prayer, be happy to spend time with them. Beg all your benefactors all the time to pray for your family, you will need it! Take time off, you and the family, go off alone to rest and pray for a time. Have desert days.
Keep up the outreaches to the many ejidos, and try to give help to people from General who want to serve in the ejidos but don’t have vehicles or gasoline, let learners and observers accompany you on your trips to the chapels.
Your Brother in Jesus,