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Ontario volunteers share God’s love in Nicaragua

January 12, 2011 No Comment

CAPTION: The vacation Bible school in Leon, Nicaragua conducted by members of Redeemer, Waterloo, Ontario, was “standing room only.”

The vacation Bible school in Leon, Nicaragua conducted by members of Redeemer, Waterloo, Ontario, was “standing room only.”

by James Morgan

For many children in Canada, vacation Bible school at a local church is a summer tradition, and it’s quickly becoming one for more than 700 children in Leon, Nicaragua, thanks to help from eleven volunteers from Redeemer Lutheran Church in Waterloo, Ontario. They have just returned home from spending a week in the Central American country assisting with a daily vacation Bible school for children in three communities.

A group from Redeemer first travelled to Nicaragua in January, 2010. This year, they returned to one of the communities, Telica, where 300 people attended daily activities in the local community cultural centre. Last year, activities there took place outdoors under a large tree nicknamed the “Krestick Tree” after Redeemer’s pastor, Rev. Robert Krestick who is part of the team. More than 100 people attended the daily vacation Bible school in Gracias de Dios, and 80 attended in San Pablo. In addition to the children’s ministry, Pastor Krestick led an adult Bible class for 80 people.

The efforts of the Redeemer volunteers assist four pastors of Iglesia Luterana Sínodo de Nicaragua (ILSN) in their ongoing outreach to their communities. The Lutherans in Leon have recently purchased land where they hope to soon construct a church building.

Pastor Krestick says the average vacation Bible school day in Nicaragua is composed of “lessons, crafts, loads of singing, and food.” Describing the pace at which everyone worked, he reports; “our days were fast and furious, full of action and love.” The team prepared crafts materials—enough to supply hundreds of children—ahead of time in Waterloo. “We arrived here, each of us carrying an extra suitcase jammed with crafts to match the daily themes,” Pastor Krestick said. Members of the Waterloo congregation helped prepare the 600 craft items needed each day.

The group also made an effort to lower the language barrier. Ruth Breton, a member of the Redeemer congregation speaks Spanish and helped with translation, and making sure the others in the group knew a few words of the language ahead of time. 

The 11 members of this year’s team from Redeemer Lutheran Church who went to Nicaragua are; Jane Black, Ruth Breton, Danielle Breton, Lucille George, Darryl and Cathy Holland, Lisa Jackson, Pastor Robert and Elizabeth Krestick, Ray Taylor, and Wayne Weiberg.

Iglesia Luterana Sínodo de Nicaragua is a partner church of Lutheran Church–Canada (LCC). ILSN held its founding convention in January 2008 following ten years of mission work conducted by LCC.

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