Paul and Eunice Unruh
EMM - Pachuca, Hidalgo, Mexico

email office@emm-mexico.net
web anamissions.org
May 23, 2019

This past weekend I was able to sit in on the last Bible study at the youth camp held on the seminary grounds. What a blessing to listen to the testimonies of thanksgiving several of the young people shared.

Edward, one young man from Pachuca, who was part of the musicians who led the singing shared how he personally saw God work. As a team they practiced hard to play and sing with excellence, and then the day before camp started he got sick and some others did too. When they were setting everything up the sound system was not working right. However, when it came time for worship, despite all the problems, no one seemed to get distracted or bothered by the bad quality of the sound system. His words, “God was working”. He finished by saying, “Be encouraged, God has been moving among us”.

Then a young lady from Aguascalientes shared that she has been struggling with discouragement. To begin with, she had not really wanted to come to camp because she was feeling so low. At camp she realized that much of the discouragement she has been facing has been for lack of convictions. She realized that during camp she had grown in her understanding of God, and that He had restored her.

Why are testimonies like this such a blessing to me? First of all because God is working in the lives of young people — men and women who will later be the leaders of our churches. Secondly, because for several years we had quit having youth camps. Three years ago I encouraged the leader of our child evangelism department to have a camp for middle schoolers. This jump started our youth camps again. Three years ago there were only 30 campers and last year 180. This year there were only 105 campers plus leaders. There were fewer campers than last year but more churches were represented this year. Thanks for making stories like this possible.

 

April 26, 2019

This past week I took six of our students from the seminary to visit two churches to promote the work of the seminary.

Our fist visit was to Tenango, a town nestled in the mountains of the state of Hidalgo. Even though it is only 65 miles from the seminary, it took us two and a half hours to get there. The last 17 miles are switch-back curves with beautiful views that take at least forty minutes to navigate. Praise the Lord we had no fog which most days is to be found on this stretch of highway.

I wish you could have been along and listened to pastor Enoc as he shared his heart for these people and the challenges he faces in ministering in this area. He is reaching out to some of the communities like Nandho that is an hour further down the road. This village had no Christians until about a year ago when he went there to preach. Now five people travel one hour to come to church on Sundays. They worship along with a former politician from the area who four months ago came to know the Lord after years of having people from this church witness to him.

Praise the Lord this small church is outgrowing the small room they built for Sunday School classes, but are currently using for their meeting place.

The other blessing on this trip was to learn to know my students. Abdiel, a third-year student preached an excellent message. Even more of a blessing for me was to listen to the students talking about the chal-lenges they are already facing where they minister. Listening to them share with each other how they want people to grow spiritually and also see the church grow in number makes all the time and effort in teaching them worth it. Pray that God will raise up more workers like these for His field.

 

April 5, 2019

What About the Student Wives?

Most often when we share about our married students we share about the men who are studying. However, there are some married students whose wives are also studying to better help their husbands in their present and future ministry.

Isabel Cervantes

Hi my name is Isabel. I am a student at the seminary taking the Christian Education minor while my husband is here studying for the pastorate.

I have really enjoyed my time here since we got here. Knowing that all I am studying will help me serve God better keeps me going. It has not always been easy to study while taking care of our three children – Heber, Natalia, and Hector – my husband. At the same time I have been struggling with my health.

Six years ago I was diagnosed with Thyroid cancer and have undergone different treatments. In all this, however, we have seen God do great things. One of them is that I am here now.

A few weeks ago they found another node in my trachea and am now having to go to check ups and get a series of tests done. This again has helped my faith and trust in God to keep growing.

God has been faithful to me and my family while we have been here. He has provided for all our needs including all my medications. He shows us His love at every moment blessing us through our teachers and fellow students who help us out when we need it. I give God all the glory and honor for His faithfulness and care.

Stephanie Perez

My name is Stephanie Gicel and I would like to share with you why I am studying at the seminary along with my husband.

God led me to serve Him in the Christian Education department of our church. As time went by, I realized that our churches don’t train the teachers and those who serve God as they need to be. I began investigating what Christian Education was really about and came to realize that my ignorance was greater than I imagined. I prayed that God would use me to be a blessing to each one of those teachers who are doing so without really knowing what they are doing. God’s answer was, “I’ll send you to seminary to teach you what you need to learn for the ministry I have given you.”

I can say that in these past three years I have learned so many things that are useful in the church. I have learned how to organize a VBS, about the differences in age groups, and what the role of the pastor is in this ministry among other things. I also thank God because I have not only learned theory. God has allowed me to serve in this ministry in the church we are attending. I know that when we finish our studies here God will take me to places to teach what I have learned. He will allow me to help those who wish to serve our Lord more effectively.

I ask you to pray for each teacher, parent, and child who belongs to the body of Christ that we might together proclaim His Gospel to those who have not yet heard. I ask also that you pray that more students would come to be trained for the ministry.

Reaching Beyond our Borders

Some of our neigbors south of the border of Mexico have even less Christian resources and trained pastors and leaders in the churches.

Because of this we have found it a privilege to minister to some churches we have been able to contact in Honduras, Nicaragua and Colombia. We have been able to do so through our Bible correspondence courses. One small church in Honduras has been using the courses we have sent to disiciple young people in the Mount Calvary Baptist Church Honduras church. They have a group of thirty young people that have started on their second study, a survey of the Bible.

Another church in Nicaragua shared with Damian who heads up this department that the studies we have sent them have been a great blessing to his church. At one point Jose Dávila, the pastor of the church, belonged to a church movement that started teaching some things that he realized were not Biblical and entertaining some practices that he also was convinced were not from God. He began teaching a more conservative doctrine and was dismissed along with his church from the movement. This caused a bit of a financial crisis in his church.

He has expressed his thanks to us for providing sound biblical materials to him at no cost because otherwise there would not have been any way for him to acquire them.

Mount Calvary Baptist Church Hondur - Building to Bless

On February 26 we broke ground for the building of the new module of married student apartments. What a blessing to see this happen.

Thanks to those who have so generously given toward this project we have received $26,000 of the $75,000 needed for building two of the four apartments.

If you read the two testimonies of the married student wives in the first part of this letter, you can see the kind of people we have blessed with the apartments that were built several years ago. It only took two years after they were built and finished to fill them up, and they have remained full since.

We believe the same can happen with these that we are wanting to build. Already we can use at least one if it is ready by August, and we could offer the other to some married couple who might be considering studying but are postponing their decision due to a lack of the finances needed to come to school as a family.

Schooling that Makes a Difference

David Roberts who has a Christian School in Aguascalientes shared the following.

We have been hoping and planning for many years to add a middle school (grades 7-9) to our pre-school and elementary school. The students in the middle school age group undergo many changes in their lives and face many challenges and temptations from their peers. We want to help them through this crucial period in their life.

We finally have the architectural plans. It will be two stories with a large meeting room (1120 sq. ft.) three classrooms, a lab, office space and bathrooms. The meeting room is for meetings with parents, and can also be used for our church. We are excited that we are finally getting closer to making this a reality!

So far we have about one third of the funds for this. We still need $121,000 to complete the project. Help us pray for this need.

 

February 18, 2019

Eunice and I praise God for his goodness and for the support we have from friends and family on both sides of the border. I got a call from Eunice today saying, “God just showed me today we do have friends looking out for us.” I am away from home so often that hearing that is a blessing.

Teaching at the seminary

God gave us five new students at the seminary this past august. Now in January one more student signed up full time.

Brother Francisco and his wife came up from Chiapas this past august to begin his studies. He has been a pastor for several years even though he never had any training for the position. He is not an isolated case. A few years ago I read a report of an a study of the state of the church in Mexico that found that more than 60% of pastors in Mexico have had no training.

God gave us five new students at the seminary this past august. Now in January one more student signed up full time.

Brother Francisco and his wife came up from Chiapas this past august to begin his studies. He has been a pastor for several years even though he never had any training for the position. He is not an isolated case. A few years ago I read a report of an a study of the state of the church in Mexico that found that more than 60% of pastors in Mexico have had no training.

God gave us five new students at the seminary this past august. Now in January one more student signed up full time.

Brother Francisco and his wife came up from Chiapas this past august to begin his studies. He has been a pastor for several years even though he never had any training for the position. He is not an isolated case. A few years ago I read a report of an a study of the state of the church in Mexico that found that more than 60% of pastors in Mexico have had no training.

Through Rogelio Noguera who has been working with us and doing pastoral training in Chiapas, we have now helped two pastors to come to the seminary. Brother Francisco worked on getting his high school diploma as well as starting his studies at the seminary. He is so thankful for this opportunity that has been given to him.

He told me recently, “During these past few months, God has shown us His mercy and love and has also been transforming our lives. When I started my studies at the seminary I felt totally incapable of being able to study and make a good grade. I prayed to God and asked for his wisdom and He has been answering my prayer. I was able to finish my studies for getting my GED. I got a 9.5 grade average in these studies. It has been because God helped me.”

Stories like this make it worth all the effort to keep teaching at the seminary.

Rebecca continues to teach at a grade school in Kuala Lumpur. She is also working on a Masters degree in education. We are looking forward to seeing her in summer.

Paul David continues to work in the oil fields in central and western Texas. I get to see him every now and then when he is home and I go to Texas at the end of the month.

Prayer Requests

  • Pray for Eunice’s Bible Study on Mondays. That new ladies would come
  • Pray for continued strength for Paul
  • Pray for safety. Things in Mexico are only getting worse.

Another Trip to Cuba

On October 30, I flew into Santa Clara, Cuba. I went to spend three weeks in Cienfuegos to teach a class at a small Bible School. I find times like this stimulating. I am able to teach these young people who have grown up in an atheistic culture about the God of the Bible who controls history. In a way it is eye-opening. It is not that they don’t know God, but have never looked at Bible history nor their own history as being in God’s control. Since I was there, the pastor had me also teach his doctrine class to their third-year students. This increased my time for preparation and at times I was a bit pressed to get ready for all my classes.

I have been asked to go back this fall and teach both classes again.

As well as teaching the two classes I was asked to share a conference on what the Bible teaches on giving. In a way one might think, what do people with so little have to give? However, God does not teach that only those that have abundance are required to help further His kingdom. In the process of preparing to teach, God convicted me of my own unwillingness to sometimes give even though doing so would not mean giving up anything I really need.

Even the pastor’s wife has put me to work. This time, like most of the previous times, I have been asked to share with the women in the weekly meeting. There are some of these women who have become prayer partners for our ministry.

On my trips to Cuba I try to teach them some new recipe. They have limited ingredients and no ovens so it makes it a challenge. This time I made a pie crust on the stove and then filled it with coconut cream. They had never tasted anything like it.

Family News

Asher had fun putting his new Lego set together with uncle Reed and auntie Lynn.

This year for the first time in a few years, we were not able to spend Christmas together as a family. Rebecca is now in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and spent Chrismas there. Lynette and her husband Reed were able to come down for Christmas. The grandkids really enjoyed having Uncle Reed around. Paul David and his family spent Christmas in Pharr. We were able to go up and spend New Years with them.

Eunice went over to Aisha’s parents to ring in the New Year. I was not feeling so well so I stayed home.

Once a month I enjoy seeing Paul David’s kids when I go up to take care of business at headquarters in Pharr.

Ali is doing well. She is currently teaching English downtown a few nights a week. We have been able to add three bedrooms to the apartment in the back of our lot where we lived when we first moved to Pachuca. Hoping to have it ready for March for Ali to move in with her kids.

 

February 4, 2019

A few months back several of the seminary students started making plans for a short trip to a village in the mountains of the state of Veracruz. They decided to travel out there to help brother Gonzalo who was assigned there as pastor this past July. He is an older gentleman that studied two years at the seminary.

They packed up their things and left the day Christmas break started. One of the exciting details of this trip was that a girl from a church up in northern Mexico heard about the trip and asked if she could join the team. She has heard a lot about missions and decided to do something about it.

The group spent three days teaching children and adults on the birth, death and resurrection of Christ. Most of the kids that came to the classes knew nothing or very little about Christ. Also, since a lot of the adults in this community cannot read or write, the students prepared booklets with pictures relating to each one of the truths they were taught. This will allow the adults to later review what they learned using their booklets.

Some of the team took time to do some teaching on serving God. They prepared these sessions for the leader-ship in the church. Because of the years many of these people have lived steeped in idolatry, some things that might seem basic to us are not known to them. There is so much ground work to be done and foundations that have to be laid in places like this.

Thank you for being a part in making things like this happen. We know it was a blessing to the receiving church, but are also convinced that service like this is also a part of the training of our students. Pray that God will raise up more leaders who would come to be trained at the seminary.

Thank you for supporting our effort to reach children for Christ. Blanca who heads up our Child Evangelism department traveled to Reynosa to help in a church plant there. She held several special classes with the chil-dren and rehearsed for a Christmas program. We praise God that children in a violent city like this can hear the Gospel before getting drawn into the drug scene.