October News

The Colombian hillside of coffee
"His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge
 of Him who called us by his own glory and goodness." 2 Peter:3

Our Mission
Photo Gallery
Monthly News
Prayer Requests

Our Mission

To follow God's will for our lives so that we can serve Him in all we do, go wherever He leads, and share His amazing love with those around us.

Continue to support mission projects around the world:
1) Cusco, Peru - Romulo Tupa - Local Missionary
2) Guayllabamba, Ecuador - Tulcanza Family - Local Missionary Church with two outreach locations
3) El Batan Missionary Alliance Church
4) Just For Kids Orphanage - Valle de los Chillos, Ecuador
5) Home of Hope - Malawi, Africa, Canadian Missionaries
6) Missionaries and mission trips that God plants in our hearts

Photo Gallery

Fruit is available anywhere you are, whether in town or by the side of the road.
Steve enjoys a meal at Don Frijoles of typical Colombian food.

You would be amazed at how much stuff and how many people you can
carry on the back of a motorbike, while the market in Quito was
as colorful as ever.

  We had a great view of all snow-capped volcanoes leaving Quito early in the morning

Monthly News

The beauty that surrounds us here in Colombia is one of the positives that we really enjoy. We are fortunate to have several of the yellow blooming trees right outside our apartment and the hummingbirds have a field day in them. This month has gone by very quickly as we get more settled in school and travel more around the countryside.

One activity popular in Colombia, as well as Ecuador, is the chiva, an open-air bus that drives you around the countryside, stopping in small towns to get out and dance. The band travels with you on the bus and it is a fun and relaxing time.

We have had the kind of rain and weather every day that people in Georgia would die for, but then, you'd have to give up Coke Zero, your favorite popular restaurant, free refills, and stores open whenever you want!  It's all a trade off.  We have talked with the local church here about how we can serve and are looking into starting English classes one night a week with the Bible as the resource. It is hard to do after teaching English all day, but it is one way we can fill a need here.

The school has had some bad luck with the social studies teacher position, so they decided to divide up the classes and pay a little extra to those that would pickup the extra work. I am now teaching six periods a day with four English classes and two social studies with no planning, but in exchange for that, the additional pay will help along with no additional duties. We will see how it goes.  Our big event this month is English Day where we have a day of activities that promote English so that is taking a lot of time and planning; as always, more on the teacher than the students!

Unfortunately, I think the same kids that were on the streets when we lived in Quito are still there.
Once you start thinking begging is okay and you are successful, it is a hard cycle to break.

We had a few days off because of a Colombian holiday and were able to spend it in Quito visiting friends and talking about future projects with the pastors we still work with there. As always, travel in South America is an adventure. We went back and forth to the airport as our flight was cancelled and changed, ended up paying $55.00 each in airport tax to leave Colombia and another $41.00 each to leave Ecuador.  You really need to find a cheap flight when the taxes add another $100 to your ticket! It was frustrating but so worth it to get away for a few days. Steve was very excited to have some Coke Zero and of course we had to eat at McDonalds and Burger King while we had the chance. We brought back a suitcase of our favorite things that are expensive in Colombia or can't be found. Quito for us is always like coming home. A lot of people think we are nuts to see a big dirty city of half built concrete structures with the poverty and limitations that are so different that the United States as "home." When you have the priviledge of being an American and the opportunities that provides, it is hard for some to understand why you'd rather live any where else. I think of Ecuador as how God must look at us as sinners, unclean, that He still loves no matter what and only wants to see the best in. When something is a part of your heart, it is amazing the relationship that can develop and grown.

We see probably 5-6 different varieties of hummingbirds every day at our feeders, but this is my favorite

We were blessed to be able to attend El Batan for church while we were in Ecuador and see several of the street kids we worked with in the Ninos en Riesgo Program that had accepted Christ since we'd seen them last in attendance. Sometimes I think the focus on planting more and more churches can miss some of the other avenues for growth and change. You want to grow where there is a need and provide direction for unified worship and fellowship, but there are so many people that need to be reached on other levels. It was so sad in April to find out that one of the kids we had worked with for several years whose life was changed dramatically by the program had been killed by street thugs, but knowing he was saved and that others have found Jesus because of his example makes its all worthwhile. We will continue to work with this group when teams come to Quito because the results of the sharing of love and Christian fellowship continually bear fruit.

<>In Guayllabama, the pastor shared about his new church plant in another part of the countryside. They have already had seven salavations and one of the youth that was saved has been going door to door in the community with invitations to join them for the church services. It always amazes me the change that having Christ in your heart can make in a life and the fire that drives you to want that joy for everyone else. It is often hard in our lives as we get busy and our jobs limit us to maintain that level of excitement, but we need to continually pray and strive to be like this new believer. I don't know about you, but I don't want to fall short of the purpose God has for me with my life and I'll keep plugging away at it until I figure out the direction He has for me. Of course, Steve is a part of the plan!

Our plans upcoming plans include the following:
December 15th - 26th - Quito, Ecuador - participate with the Ninos en Riesgo, Christmas Celebration at the three missions at Guayllabamba, and help with the single mothers emphasis at El Batan.

April - (dates to come) Quito, Ecuador - help with new church plants and outreach in Guayllbamba; construction of the one room building for services in Cheka. Anyone that is interested in participating in either trip is welcome and can contact us for more information. I wish I could say all mission trips were free, but unfortunately airfare is what it is and since we are working missionaries, we incur the same costs as well. We do the best we can at our end to minimize costs but maximize the experience.
<>Contact us at steve_carpenter@hotmail.com or cathleen_carpenter@hotmail.com

<>It has been a blessing to have a friend of ours serving in the Middle East because she is such a encourager and gives a great perspective of what it is like to be somewhere else trying to live your life for Christ. Serving Christ is doing what you can wherever you are and thank God that He gives us each a heart for a different part of the world so that all His people would have the opportunity to hear the Word. Don't let your life here on earth be just about what's in it for you; all you are and all you have is God's so use it wisely and the rewards will be more than you could possible imagine.

Prayer Requests and Praises

Cotopaxi in the morning cloud cover as we left Quito

- a new church plant in Guayllabamba with a starter group and already seven salvations

- Salvations in the group of street kids in the Ninos en Riesgo Program

- Continued support and opportunity for projects to grow in Ecuador

- Good health

- Guidance on where God wants us to go from here
- Steve in his new job for opportunities in many areas for him and for God
- For people to participate in Ecuador in future mission opportunities
- Pastor Marcelo and Thalia's son, Samuel, to continue to grow and develop without problems
- Continued support for Montebello and the school in Valle de los Chillos to reach their area with education and hope

return to home page