We recently received a message from one of our GCU missionaries and are thrilled to share it with you!
It honestly feels like the thought of leaving is incomprehensible! We are truly loving it here! Very much looking forward to the rest of the days left and all that God has in store! We have seen and encounter God move tremendously in us and in the lives of others! From salvation to fire filled worship services to simply even seeing the Word of God touch lives at Men’s devotional for pastor Dario’s new house! It’s been great just seeing God move and seeing Him move is as we remain obedient and willing to serve and share of His behalf! What’s left of these few days is seeing Puerto Galera, hanging with family and bible study, prayer meeting, and wrapping this trip up! What God has taught me so far as a missionary is living: living in His presence, living out the call He has predestined you to, and living the life worthy of Christ and declaring His goodness and His truth among all through action, word and deed. Truly it’s been all about what it means to live as a follower of Jesus, allowing His transformation in you to preach louder than your words knowing even still you are being transformed and renewed! It’s been a pleasure, and if there’s any way I can encourage anyone to come out to the Philippines or simply go out beyond the borders stepping into the call, I will gladly do so!Thank you so much again, Dennis for all your prior and continued help, support and encouragement!God is SO good and I am honored to be here, and be serving along side yourself and Hands Giving Hope!Blessings,Courtney Okwudibonye
Please enjoy our slideshow of some of the many highlights taking place with our GCU Kenya teams, which also includes Pastor Stan from our Navajo Reservation! God is moving through these teams!!
GCU students have been busy ministering in Maasai Mara, Kenya. As with many of our trips, there’s quite the travel experience to get to our ministry areas. Kenya is no different. The team had to cross some rivers to get to the Maasai school.
The journey is always so worth it though. Our GCU Kenya students had the opportunity to get to know the kids through games as well as conducting a bible study.
… and of course no trip to Kenya is complete without a little wild life adventure.
They are now on their way to work with the Turkana’s. Please continue to keep the team in your prayers during their travels, preparing the hearts of all those they come in contact with, and during ministry. May God be their leader paving the way!
Our 2 month team has left Maasai Mara after working with the Maasai tribe for 2 weeks. They are resting in Nairobi for a couple of days before they catch a small plane and fly to Lodwar and then drive 2 hours to Katukuri to work with the Turkana tribe for 3 weeks. Pastor Daniel is filling the water tank in Katukuri preparing for their arrival.
Before leaving India, the GCU students had a day of fun! They spent the day at the park, eatting, boating, and just enjoying all that God’s done through them in Imphal Manipur India. They will never be the same… in the best possible way🙂
There are many mud and rock slides that block the mountain roads,it takes a combined effort of all travelers to get out of their vehicles to clear the roads.
Other challenges in reaching your destination in the Jungles of India.
But no matter what they’ve been faced with, they’ve enjoyed the journey and bring the light of Jesus with them.
The GCU India team has been traveling a lot lately visiting many jungle villages in Northern India. As many have come to find out, no mission trip is complete without a little vehicle issue on the way. Due to the rainy season, the team actually had to get out and walk the rest of the way to the village.
Once they made it to the villages, the team had the opportunity to spend some amazing time in fellowship with the communities. They might not have been able to spend Mother’s Day with their mom’s, but they did get to spend it with some amazing mom’s from the villages.
They’ve also had so many special moments praying for those they come in contact with, teaching many of the kids, and conducting seminars for the villages.
Thankfully they’ve also had time to relax and rejuvenate in one of India’s waterfalls. Thank you Jesus for showing up everywhere this team goes, speaking through them, and providing such joy and refreshment all in Your precious name!
GCU students have been busy in India. They’ve been visiting villages in many remote and “hilly” areas being an encouragement at each stop.
They’ve had a chance to play sports with the kids, assist in schools, preach, and pray for those they meet.
Through the GCU India team, God has been moving mightyly and it’s only just begun!
A night out for “HOT POT”, It’s very popular in China and you have many interesting choices available to you.
Mangyan Daycare Center
Students traveled 1 hour to another Mangyan community vehicle then had to cross river by foot and walk about 45 minutes to village. There they delivered rice to 65 families and interacted with the children of the village.
Our GCU Honduras team has made it safely with their fearless leader Nicole Hill. She is leading a group of 15 students from GCU has they embark on medical brigades in the next few days. They’ve been busy prepping medical bags with much needed pills and vitamins that will be handed out during their medical visits, where teams typically see about 100-200 patients a day (thank you to those who donated these supplies).
After a 4:00 am arrival at their hotel the ready and willing GCU students were up and ready to go for a 8:30 am breakfast. Then it was off to the bank to exchange some money, walk around the city to see some sights, back to the hotel to check out, off for some lunch at a local noodle place, then it was off to the 2 schools the students will be working at, dinner at one of the schools, then off to their host homes to get a good nights sleep.
Here’s our “final “installment” of extra details for our GCU students (for overall details please see previous post). We are so excited for all God has in store for these students!!
Students welcoming me to their school. This is one class. We have about 100 students. Teacher in blue. Students will be staying in tents during the week working in the school and with the tribe.
School kitchen and volunteer cook, beans are cooking in the pot and then she will add rice. It’s a great meal!!
I have a special relationship with this teacher and elder. The students are going to love these guys.
The students are singing; I am standing on the Rock and Jesus is the rock on whom I stand upon
Here’s just a little insight into what the GCU students will be involved with when traveling to Lodwar. To read more about their trips please visit our previous post.
Church family in Lodwar, students will be spending their weekends working withe church in Lodwar
Church family in Lodwar
We previously shared about opportunities our GCU students will have in Kenya (details here). Here’s a little more on Maasai Mara.
My friend Joe and his family, owners of a Safari camp in Maasai Mara, have agreed to have our students stay at his camp during their time at Maasai Mara. This is the dining area. Sweet!!
Joe and cook in kitchen at Maasai Mara camp.
Hanging out with the elders in Maasai village, one of the villages students will be working in
Pastor Samson’s wife (on back left) is a teacher at a school where our students will be working.
Hard telling what you’re going to run into in the Maasai villages
I, Dennis, am currently in Kenya organizing and preparing for 2 different groups of GCU students coming to Kenya for mission work.
There will be 3 area’s where they will work.
1) They will travel from Nairobi by road to Maasai Mara to work with pastors Samson and Samuel and the Maasai Tribe.
2) They will travel from Nairobi by air (small prop plane) to Lodwar to work with pastor Daniel and his church.
3) They will travel from Lodwar by road to Katukuri to work with the Turkana tribe.
The GCU students will be living (in tents) and working with these tribal people building relationships and learning their culture.
Our last, but certainly not least, story from another GCU student. What an amazing God we serve!!
Man, what a week! I got the opportunity to spend my spring break in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico. Me and a group of 3 others from GCU went and spent it praying, serving, and being the hands and feet of the Lord. We helped lay a concrete roof on the new church, went and prayed with families, cartel and gang members, and partnered with a little league baseball team. God blessed us so much this past week and I will be forever grateful for it! To top it off I got to celebrate my birthday with all my new friends.
Please continue to celebrate with us all that our amazing God did through these GCU students in Puerto Penasco, Mexico. We are continuing with another story from another student that journeyed on this God life changing adventure.
I was so blessed to be able to lead and learn with these students from GCU. We each got to experience God’s love in a whole other way. Our stay with the Pastor’s Bonifacio taught us to live out our faith boldly and never stop investing in the Kingdom. Pastor Adan and Alicia have a heart for Puerto Peñasco and we got to see that working closely with them on our trip. Together we made house visit, prayed for the sick, mentored the youth, feed the hungry, cleaned the church and shared the gospel with everyone we came across. Not only did we get to enjoy time among the church community, but we also got to connect with the city little league team Coached by Pastor Henry. We got to see the all the great things God is doing through that team and its leadership. My time in Puerto Peñasco will never be forgotten.
We recently took a trip down to Puerto Penasco, Mexico with a group of GCU students… during their spring break. Yes… these students gave up their spring break to be used by God in mighty ways. The next few days we’d like to share some of their stories of how God showed up and rocked their world!
“Ayudame a mirrar con tus ojos, Jesus”. Translation: “Help me to see with your eyes, Jesus”. (These words were written on a mural from a wall in Puerto Peñasco). I spent a week in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico on a missions trip. I can honestly say that I am forever changed and humbled from this trip. God truly showed his power while my team and I were down there and I am truly in awe of my Heavenly Father. I gained new members of my family while staying with Pastor Adan and Alicia and I look forward to seeing them again.
Our baseball program in Mexico is expanding. Coach Henry has gotten into 3 different schools and we now have over 100 kids in our developmental league. We are also planning on starting a girls softball team with all the interest the young girls are showing. The Gospel through sports is growing in Puerto Peñasco.
The new president of Puerto Peñasco has taken a liking to our little league baseball team we started 5 years ago to draw kids away from the drug culture they live in and on to a more positive direction in life. Coach Henry, who played in the Chicago Cubs minor league system and currently pastors a church in Puerto Peñasco not only has been teaching these boys great baseball skills but daily sharing Christian values with them having a wonderful influence on them and their families.
A week ago our team represented Puerto Peñasco in a national tournament in Hermosillo, first time Puerto Penasco has been represented, and took home the second place trophy and the right to represent the state of Sonora in another National tournament starting March 27th in Queretaro Mexico down by Mexico City.
If we go to the finals of this tournament we will earn the right to play in the International tournament and the finalists of this tournament will represent Mexico in the Little League World Series.
I, Dennis, have to say that when I started this I know Henry had lofty goals and so did I, but our focus was and is to make a difference in these boy’s lives and to have an impact on their families. That I think we have accomplished and will continue to try and accomplish with new kids coming into our program. What is happening with this team now is truly a blessing.
Our next challenge is raising $1,600.00 to get these boys and their coaches to the tournament in Queretaro. If you would like to help you can go to www.hghope.org, click on the donate button put in Mexico baseball in the comment box.
Today I, Dennis, am praising God for:
Successful surgery on Feb. 22nd to remove a large tumor from my left leg.
Pathology report that came back benign (NO CANCER!!!) on Feb. 26th.o
A swift recovery
Prayer warriors support.
Unbelievable family support.
Today I’m believing:
On March 10th I will be released to fly and I be back out on the trail again.
Pastor Santa, (from Manipur Imphal, India) has been traveling and visiting with many in his area that were effected by the earthquake by providing them with much needed supplies. He provided us with a little note and some pictures of his activities.
Hi Pastor Dennis
Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Please pray for Gairilong village where you visited last time.
This village is also affected by the recent quake.
Below is a swinging bridge that these pastors walk across to reach the village.
Our school in Katukuri has opened. We have hired a teacher and delivered food and school supplies. For now we are meeting under tree’s but have plans to build a simple building as funds become available. We also desperately need a Well. Please pray for funding.
January 6th I (Dennis) received an email from the pastors I work with in Imphal Manipur India that an earthquake had hit Manipur and that the epicenter was at the Tamenglong district an area where we work. There were 8 deaths reported and over seventy injured. Other surrounding villages we work in were affected as well.
Pastor Lungsim said the earthquake victims are in need of food, medicine, warm clothing, some household items, and help with putting up shelters for them. You can give on line at www.hghope.org and click on the donate button. In the comment section put for India earthquake. 100% of what you give will go towards helping the earthquake victims.
Team for Hope bike team did a Christmas party for the children of our Feeding Center in San Rafael operated be pastor Adan and his wife Alecia.
What a blessing it was for these children as they received God’s Word, small gifts, cupcakes and of coarse their was a piñata.
To end the party we raffled of 6 new bicycles. It was a great time had by all and a wonderful Finale to our Christmas.
Lungsim, K.P. and Santa are amazing pastors working from Imphal Manipur India. They often travel out into the jungle to tribal communities spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ reaching out to the children through VBS. They have been very successful in planting churches, raising up pastors and leaders, drawing people into the Kingdom of God and discipleship. I am so grateful to have them as partners of HGH.
There’s been some debate among our staff as to how many years we have been doing the Christmas Outreach in Kaibeto on the Navajo Reservation. We believe our first one was Christmas of 2001. This years dinner was nothing short of AMAZING!!!
We estimated we served 550 people and gave away 180 turkey’s. Every family went home with a frozen turkey.
We were able to give diapers to mothers who came to the dinner with their babies and every child was able to pick out a toy.
We were able to give away 6 more bicycles in addition to the 120 that were given away the Saturday before.
We had comforters, blankets, quilts, pillows and beautiful rugs that every family could choose from.
HGH was truly blessed this year as all the turkey’s, food for the dinner and all gifts were 100% donated.
We are so grateful for our relationship with pastor Stan and his wife Maxine, his daughters Lisa and Margaret and families, members of the church and the many Navajo’s who have become our friends.
We look forward to continuing our work on the reservation in 2016.
December 12, 2015 HGH was blessed with 150 new bikes that were given to Children on the Navajo reservation. Pastor Stan and his church saw to it that kids in the community of Kaibeto that needed a bike got one.
On a cold Saturday morning in Kaibeto kids showed up with their parents to receive their bicycles
In September of this year (2015) Team for Hope put on their 1st annual mountain bike race in Puerto Penasco. The purpose was to raise funds for our feeding center and to help with the construction of our community center in San Rafael. Kids from our Feeding Center and our little league baseball team came to help with the event as well as pastor Adan, pastor Henry, our Team For Hope cyclists and group from Phoenix. It was truly a team effort. We were able to raise $1,000.00 for our Feeding Center and Community Center. We’re looking at the possibility of doing another one in February.
Enjoy the video.
Joe and I (Dennis) are on the way to Kaibeto on the Navajo reservation to take up water barrels for our water project, 150 brand-new bicycles that were donated for kids on the Navajo reservation and comforters and many other gifts. It’s going to be a great Christmas out reach on the Navajo reservation this year. We will also do our annual Christmas dinner where we will feed about 700 people. If you’re interested in helping us this year please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Loading 150 new bicycles that were donated for children on the Navajo reservation
Please check out some videos on our HGH FB page of us loading the comforters… especially if you want a good laugh!!
Working in Katukuri with the Turkana tribe has been a fairly new work and been going sort of slow. I believe this time out was a big break through. In August when we were in Katukuri a lady came forward for prayer who couldn’t walk on her own. Yesterday she testified to her community that God had healed her. She is now walking and dancing on her own. Others testified to the power of prayer. They have put together a temporary school and starting in January we will start teaching their children. There shared that they want change. They don’t want their kids to grow up the they have. They are very open to receiving our GCU team this summer.
Enjoy the pictures!!
HGH is unfolding some new projects in Kenya that we are very excited about and this summer 12 GCU students with leaders from HGH will be on the ground floor of these projects. A couple days ago I (Dennis) was at Maasai Mara meeting with the pastors we will be working with this summer. I am very excited about the potential that exists to reach the Maasai’s for Christ in this community that borders a world renown game park in Kenya.
Enjoy some pictures I took today.