Dear Friends, March 13, 2014
I traveled to Guatemala on the 7-8 of this month and we had another good Institute session. I am scheduled to be there again on April 4-5. Besides the ongoing studies, we are taking sound books and other materials each month that the men are putting to good use. Pastor Omar continues to travel to Nicaragua and things are somewhat better there.
In February our Institute in Merida moved to a new meeting place that will hopefully be more permanent. We had a number of new visitors along with our regular group of pastors and workers who come from all over the Peninsula. Two new men came from a small Baptist work located in a town between Merida and Campeche. They have a clandestine radio station that broadcasts Christian programs without permission from the government. “Religious” radio stations are not legal in Mexico and so the only ‘official’ option is to buy time slots on commercial stations. We are looking into some recent changes in the law that may open the door to establish ‘legal’ transmitters for this kind of outreach.
We have another open door to hold our Institute studies in a ‘Baptist’ church here in Mexico City. The leadership in this assembly has no theological training. I was surprised that they want us to hold a weekly session, instead of the two-day (once a month) format that we usually use. They are a group of about 250 people. The contact came via one of our men who provided them with some of our books to read. We trust that as the Lord helps them to better understand the biblical Gospel, we will have the opportunity to ground them in other areas. The Institute has proven to be a unique way to get the truth out and help pastors and workers who have no formal preparation for the ministry.
We have been experiencing the usual ‘aggravating’ problems with our vehicles, the power company, water supply (these problems are recurrent) and some lesser issues with our printing equipment. We finally got a new electric meter installed after waiting more than 6 months to replace the one that burned up during a bad rainstorm (the government-owned power company was out of new meters). For the moment these matters are all ‘resolved’. The vehicle ended up being ‘totaled’ after a minor accident caused by an exit ramp that was partially collapsed. The insurance company opted to go this route because the cost of importing the suspension parts was more than they wanted to pay. We are almost finished with the drawn out process of getting them to pay the full value of the car.
We are planning to hold some special services over the two-week “Semana Santa” vacations in April. There are 12-15 people who have requested baptism and we will once again make use of our portable, outdoor baptistry.
We recently finished the translation work and printed the first part of the Baptist Catechism (Pastor Bill Downing). This is a lengthy and very helpful work that will take some time to finish. The end result will be published in 7 or 8 smaller booklets. The need for sound literature in Spanish is always urgent. Most of what is published by the commercial publishers is worthless, or priced beyond the reach of those who need the materials. Over the years we have been able to publish and freely distribute over 50 doctrinal and practical works, along with over 500 Spurgeon sermons. Thank you for helping with this ongoing ministry.
Missionary Tom Montgomery and Family