The last few months have been full of activity for the Rivas family. During the summer, much of Alberto's time was spent helping work teams that came over from the U.S. Groups from Ohio and Kentucky came to help with the medical clinics. There were also groups from Springfield, IL and Keokuk, IA that came to work at the camp. This kept Alberto busy with clinics, transportation, and construction work. July found Alberto particularly busy with clinics in La Pina, Narangito, Mao, Barrero, Esperanza, and Santo Domingo. There were nine people who were baptized during these clinics. Alberto also spent a week in La Pina holding Bible studies as follow up to a revival they held there.
This last month, Alberto's time has mainly been devoted to helping with the construction on the church in Barrero. He is in charge of the construction there and also purchases the needed supplies. Two Dominicans, Aridio and Antonio, oversee the work on a daily basis making sure holes are dug the proper depth and the concrete is the correct consistency. They hope to complete the addition to the church sometime this month (see article on the back for more details on this project). Alberto has also been preaching occasionally in Barrero and La Pina on weekends and has taught Sunday school in Hoya de Camito.
Lynette and Abigail spent July in Iowa visiting family and friends. They had the opportunity to speak in a few of their supporting churches: Cedar Falls Church of Christ (their sending church), New Testament Christian Church in Keokuk, and Liscomb Church of Christ.
School began again for Lynette in August. She writes the following concerning her new position at Santiago Christian School:
"I am enjoying my new position at school as Kindergarten Teacher and ECE (Early Childhood Education) Supervisor. I have 15 students from 8:00 - 11:00 each morning after which the students have playtime outside for about 40 minutes. I have recess duty once a week, and the other days I get to be the gate watcher for about 20-30 minutes as parents, chauffeurs, etc. come to pick up the morning students. The afternoon has consisted of a lot of running around so far. Hopefully this will get better once the elementary principal returns from her maternity leave. Then I hope to be able to concentrate on preschool and kindergarten curriculum, teacher evaluation, and all those other little things that come up on a daily basis. I will be attending a three day teachers' conference in October. I am excited about this opportunity to learn."
Alberto and Lynette are grateful to all of you who help to make these ministries possible through your prayers and support. Thank you for your faithfulness!
Abigail is a busy little girl. She loves to help out when she can by filling glasses with water from the water cooler or other little errands that she is learning to do (like putting things away that she shouldn't be playing with). She is full of hugs and kisses for mom and dad and for those whom she deems worthy on any particular day.
Construction has begun on the church in Barrero. The existing building currently holds 50 people: when the current construction is completed, it will hold 100. There will also be a covered area for Sunday School and a storage area for equipment (they don't have either of these at present). Six to eight people work every day on this construction. A couple of the men are paid workers, but the rest are volunteers from the church. Three of the women from the church cook breakfast and lunch for the workers. There is no running water at the church so they have to pump water 100 meters to a big container where they can easily have access to the water for making the concrete. They mix the sand, rocks, and cement on the ground, make a ditch in the middle where they pour buckets of water, and then, using shovels, they mix the concrete.
The work is progressing well. The tin roof on the church has been completed. All of the wood and tin from the old roof had to be replaced because the wood had termites and the tin was bad. The little side room that was added for storage just needs plastered to be completed. The new walls will need to be plastered, and the floor of the whole church will need to be poured. They also will make two columns, a roof and a floor for the shelter that will be used for the children's Sunday School. The front of the church will also need to be finished so water won't go through the door. The Lord willing, the construction will be finished sometime in October.
Some of the funds given to the mission have been used to finance this project. Thank you for helping to make this possible!
Thank you for your prayers on behalf of Alberto's brother, Hector. He was accepted into a school for troubled boys. He is now there and seems to understand why he needs to be there at this time in his life. He is having trouble getting along with his roommates and adjusting to a disciplined lifestyle. Please pray that he will adjust quickly and that the Lord is able to work in his life.
We appreciate your support and prayers as we continue to get settled and set up our ministry here according to God's will.
We can also be reached by writing
715 14th Street SE
Rochester, MN 55904
Our address in the Dominican will be
Juan Alberto and Lynette Rivas
SCS-DR, PO Box 24770
West Palm Beach, FL 33416
M ake all checks payable to:
Cedar Falls Church of Christ
2727 West Fourth Street
Cedar Falls, IA 50613
God bless you.
Alberto, Lynette, and Abigail Rivas