Our biggest announcement in 12 years.

What has God accomplished in this ministry over the last ten years?
He established a Christian Academy for boys. They learn math, science, and language, but that's all secondary to the mission of raising boys to be men of God.
We don't use shallow teen devotionals. After searching and praying, we settled on teaching right out of the Bible—one of the best decisions we've ever made.
Vonda and I prayed for years that we would find someone to take over teaching Bible class. Our prayers were specific, and we knew we would have to be patient.
  • He had to be Guatemalan.
  • He had to have solid theology.
  • He had to be a prayer warrior.
  • He had to be compassionate.
  • He had to be madly in love with the Lord.
After five years of praying, God sent Pablo Castillo. Not only did Pablo check all the boxes, but:
  • He's fluent in English.
  • He's a young, 26 years old.
  • He lives in nearby Chimaltenango.
Pablo and I taught side by side for the first half of the year, and then, on his own, he took over.
  • He's our school chaplain and will be praying with and over the teachers every morning.
  • He prays over our widows and single moms when we deliver food and medical care.
  • He has a servant’s heart and is full of compassion and grace.
Last year, we teamed up with another ministry that taught our boys (and teachers) English online. I'm encouraged by how far they've come.
Five of our boys dominated both English and Bible.
Two of them graduated in November, and we've given them scholarships to a private high school where they'll study for three years to be electricians. We've only ever awarded two high school scholarships, and that was three years ago.
We get the other three boys for one more year.
Here's the plan.
All five will continue to study English for the next three years alongside their regular studies.
In 2027, we'll send those who are ready to Torchbearers International Bible School in Costa Rica for a year.
"Torchbearer's mission is to proclaim the transforming presence of Jesus Christ through biblical teaching and practical training, equipping men and women for service in His church worldwide."

Torchbearers is next level, high quality, deep Bible study. (If you have a high school student, I encourage you to check them out. It would be a perfect gap year.)

  • It will be their first time in an airplane,
  • Their first time in another country,
  • And their first time spending their entire days studying the Bible and drawing close to God.
All week, we've been talking about a big announcement.
With staff and administration in place and the last missing puzzle piece found in a Bible teacher...
Vonda and I are stretching our ministry efforts to Cuba.
For the last four or five years, Vonda and I felt called to the hard-to-reach countries. Countries that don't have access to the Bible or are persecuted for sharing the gospel.
Then, last year, while watching David Platt's Secret Church, we both clearly heard Cuba when it was mentioned as "the last hard-to-reach Spanish-speaking country."
"Cuba's government is the main reason Christians face persecution. Anything deemed to be in competition with the Communist Party of Cuba is squeezed, and this includes the Christian faith. Church leaders or believers who speak out against human injustice or political corruption—or who dare to criticize the regime—risk interrogation, arrest, smear campaigns, and even prison sentences."
Christianity Today ranks Cuba in the top 5 of Communist and post-communist oppressed countries.
"All churches are monitored in Cuba and may be infiltrated by citizens sympathetic to the regime and/or State security agents."
Why Cuba?
When Vonda and I visited Cuba in 2019, we immediately felt the darkness when we got off the plane. If you know me, I'm not that guy who talks about "spiritual heaviness," but I assure you it was there.
We didn't meet a single Christian until our last day on the island.
Christianity is the most widely professed religion in Cuba, with Catholicism being its largest denomination, except none of that's actually true.
A simple Google search of "Santería practiced in Cuba" shows 70%! What is Santería?
"Santería is a religion that has fused African beliefs with Catholic traditions. It started in Cuba when African people were brought there as slaves. In Santería, people believe in gods and spirits called orishas, who take care of different things in the world like love, nature, and wisdom. They also think that these orishas are connected to Catholic saints, so they can worship them in a way that is like Catholic worship."
One of the African religions that make up Santería is Vodun sometimes spelled, Voodoo.
A young Jewish community has been growing in Cuba and since 2005, the island’s Muslim community has grown from 500 to 7000.
Studies have shown that just 5% of Cubans identify as Protestant or Evangelical. But that's not completely true either.
A significant portion of the 5% is believed to originate from megachurches, with a strong association to the Prosperity Gospel.
"And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, 'Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?' Then I said, 'Here I am! Send me.'" Isaiah 6:8
What does that look like for us?
I'll be taking a vision trip in mid-April to try to get a better idea of the religious landscape. I'll connect with a local church and explore how God would use us.
As economically poor as Cuba is, it's incredibly educated. We don't see ourselves doing what we're doing here in Guatemala. Because of government regulations, we couldn't even if we wanted to.
I plan to take another vision trip in August or September, and we plan to move the family there for one month in November.
We'll return to Guatemala, assess what we learned, continue to lead the Guatemalan ministry, and plan our next trip of 3 months.
What will we do in Cuba?
Vonda and I see ourselves building relationships, loving our neighbors, and sharing the true Gospel as evangelists. We feel like Guatemala has prepared us with the confidence of the Holy Spirit to take His Word to those who may never know who Jesus really is.

No Comments