Thursday, February 28, 2013

Back to Regular Programming: Thursday, February 28

We're back to our normal activities today, and eager to have the building full of people again!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

All Programs Cancelled: Tuesday & Wednesday, Feb. 26-27

All Mission Adelante Programs have been cancelled for Tuesday and Wednesday, February 26 and 27.  Check back on Thursday to to find out about afternoon and evening activities.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Programs (LIT) Cancelled: Monday, February 25

LIT for both our Bhutanese and Latino students has been cancelled for Monday, February 25.  Check back tomorrow to find out about Tuesday afternoon LIT and Tuesday evening Bhutanese outreach programming.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

A Direct Line to the Father

Written by Jenny Dunn, Bhutanese ESL Coordinator

At the beginning of the year, I was pretty overwhelmed with the season the my husband Garett and I were entering into.  The weekends are among the best times for us to connect with our Bhutanese friends relationally, and it seemed that we would be spending most of them either out of town or working on our house as we try to get it in order for the new baby that will be coming, God-willing, in August.  As I began praying about the dilemma, God showed me that this was to be a season of praying for them with expectancy.  At first, I thought it would be one of those things that you commit to at the beginning of the year and then forget all about, but God has not let that happen.  He has driven me into His Word, brought song lyrics into my mind that express my heart, and instructed me.

During that time, Garett and I were studying Matthew 6 along with other Mission Adelante Bhutanese outreach staff and volunteers.  Two nuggets have stuck with me as I've continued to mull over them: First, He is our Father, as we see in Matthew 6 and throughout the New Testament, and second, He is head over the universe and deserves to be honored among all peoples, as Job 38 shows us. Oh, how I long for our immigrant friends to know Him! “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” (
Matthew 6:9-10) Yes, yes, yes! Jon Foreman’s song, Your Love is Strong, emphasizes for me the power of The Lord's Prayer. It finds words for the ache of my heart, not only for the salvation of our friends, but for all peoples.

As I have been talking with God more and praying more for our friends, He has instructed me about ministry.  For about six years, Garett and I have been friends with Indian Hindus that we got to know in college.  In spite of the experience that gave us relating with culturally similar people, we have continued to learn a ton since being here in KCK with the Bhutanese. One of those things is that we need to err on the side of speaking about Jesus, rather than waiting for our friends bring Him up.  Since becoming convicted of that, we have been able to use a situation to tell one of our good Bhutanese friends about Jesus' character.  God is good.  We thought that we would spend this season semi-absent from our ministry/friends and therefore praying as an alternate activity, but He has shown us that, rather, prayer is the critical work of ministry, and that which will transform the time we spend with our friends and make our conversations intentional.

We pray that prayer becomes even more central to our approach to ministry as God truly is the One who changes hearts and guides us to speak or not to speak.

In other news:

  • Gang intervention specialist Amy Williams will be coming from Chicago to train Mission Adelante volunteers on Saturday, March 16 on understanding and ministering to the fatherless generation.  We are eager to gain insight from her experience and wisdom!

Current needs:

  • Snacks for the preschoolers at Kids Club, such as Goldfish, animal crackers, cereal, or pretzels.  If you are able to supply any, please contact Kristen Maxwell at
  • The Bhutanese and Latino LIT programs would love a generous friend to purchase healthy after-school snacks packaged in single servings for the kids.  We would be blessed to receive 2 months worth of snacks.  Please contact Megan McDermott at
  • Do you have experience as an early elementary school teacher or a reading interventionist, or know someone who does?  The Bhutanese LIT program could use a few extra tutors to come on Monday, Wednesday or Thursday afternoons to work individually with students who are struggling with reading.  Contact Kristen Maxwell at
  • Five twin beds, two dressers, two kitchen tables, and a living room chair have been requested by families through our Resource Center. If you can donate any of these items, please contact Molly Merrick at

Upcoming dates:
  • Bhutanese Kids Ministry Volunteer Dinner: Saturday, February 23 at 6:30
  • Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Dinner: March 2 at Lauren Timberlake's house. Please contact Jenny Dunn for more details at
  • Observation Days: Tuesdays, March 5 & 12 (Bhutanese)/Thursdays, March 7 & 14 (Latino) 6:30-8:30  Have you wondered what all goes on around here on a typical evening of programming?  Here's your opportunity to come and see for yourself!
  • Bring-A-Friend Fund-Raiser for Bhutanese Teens Coordinator Hannah Hume: Saturday, March 9 Email Hannah Hume at for more information.
  • Training by Amy Williams, Gang Intervention Specialist: Saturday, March 16, 9:00-12:00 at Mission Adelante.

All Programs Cancelled Thursday, February 21

All Mission Adelante programs are cancelled today due to the inclement weather.  Stay warm, stay safe, and stay home if possible!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Equipping Leaders to Serve

Written by Lauren Timberlake, Bhutanese ESL Director

Mon Maya, level 1 class captain, takes attendance on a Tuesday night.
Chuda, the Level 4 captain, by the Kansas River during a class field trip to Kaw Point last summer.
Mission Adelante desires to build indigenous leaders.  We believe that the essence of the great commission is reproducing disciples and leaders who are capable of multiplying the work. We want the people we serve to take ownership of our programs, to care deeply for their neighbors, and to see themselves as leaders. Ultimately, we want to see shepherds leading the way for their community to know Jesus. So many of our students don’t see themselves as having much to offer. They have been pushed to the fringes of their own culture and ours, and sometimes they don’t see their worth.

On registration night, each Bhutanese ESL class now chooses one or more leaders to “captain” the class. The class votes on the leader and decides what his or her responsibilities should be. They even came up with the term “captain”. Each group’s leaders may have different responsibilities, but most of them are responsible to help the lead teacher with attendance, name tags, time-keeping, and checking in on absent students.

When we introduced class leadership last fall, most of our students shied away from it. They said we should find someone younger, with more education, or who could speak better English. One student told me, “I cannot read the names. I cannot help you.” Another said, “I am too old.”

Rachel Yeargin, the level 2 instructor, said, ‘This is unique opportunity for them. Many of our students are old, have physical challenges, or lack education.  Student leadership gives them a platform to lead and serve that they have not had before. It has even had an impact on class and gender barriers in the classroom.”

Mon Maya is the captain in our level 1 class this session. She cannot read or write in English or Nepali, her native language. She stepped into leadership after watching a friend do it last fall. Before class begins each week, she has already counted and sketched out attendance using her own system. She helps students understand what is going on in class, and is ready to assist at any time. She is engaged, and her enthusiasm draws other students in as well.

A hurt arm has kept Chuda, the level 4 captain, from getting a job. He said, “Because I cannot go to the job, I can be a class captain and help my friends in that way.” He said he is glad for the opportunity to contribute.

Please join us in praying for our ESL class captains. Pray that God blesses them and draws them to himself. Pray that they have a deeper understanding of their own value, and that this taste of leadership would show them the capacity they have to serve others in their community. And finally, pray that the staff at Mission Adelante would find new and meaningful ways to partner with our community, to increase their ownership of our programs and grow leaders ready to change lives around them.

In other news:

  • Our Bhutanese and Latino LIT kids have worked hard to earn a pizza party this Saturday where we look forward to having some fun and fellowship!
  • Our Bhutanese house church leaders have begun to meet regularly for discipleship training, worship and fellowship!

Prayer needs:

  • As we begin to lay the foundation for a family practice medical clinic in our neighborhood, we recognize the immense value of input from immigrant and refugee families in our community. Please pray for the health care surveys that we're conducting with Latino and Bhutanese ESL classes this month. Please pray that God guides this process and shapes these ideas into something that will bring him glory.
  • Praise God for a miracle!  Graciela, a Latina woman in our church, was hospitalized and it seemed that she would need heart surgery.  It was concluded that she does not need surgery, and she was released from the hospital yesterday.  Pray for Graciela as she will still need to make healthy lifestyle adjustments.
  • Janoy is a friend and member of our Latino church. His wife and children have been awaiting permission to immigrate and join him in Kansas City for quite some time, and have become discouraged that the process is taking so long. Please pray for Janoy’s family as they await their visa--the final step in the process.
  • Praise God for answered prayers!  One of our Bhutanese house church leaders recently found a new, full-time job with a great employer.  Please continue to pray for others as they seek employment.

Current needs:
  • Our Resource Center is low on gently-used kitchen items. Please contact Molly at if you have items to donate.
 Upcoming dates:
  • Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Dinner: March 2 at Lauren Timberlake's house. Please contact Jenny Dunn for more details at
  • Observation Days: Tuesdays, March 5 & 12 (Bhutanese)/Thursdays, March 7 & 14 (Latino) 6:30-8:30  Have you wondered what all goes on around here on a typical evening of programming?  Here's your opportunity to come and see for yourself!
  • Bring-A-Friend Fund-Raiser for Bhutanese Teens Coordinator Hannah Hume: Saturday, March 9 Email Hannah Hume at for more information.

Thursday, February 07, 2013

A Dream Worth Fighting For

Written by Megan McDermott, Latino Children's Ministry Director 
and Iris Venegas, Teens Adelante participant

One of the best privileges that comes with serving and loving the kids of our community is hearing what they want to be when they grow up. Their dreams range from professional soccer player to special needs teacher to firefighter!  However, many of our kids reach a point where, because they are undocumented, the possibility of attending college becomes unrealistic.  If you have ever seen a child lose hope in his or her dreams, you  understand the heartbreak of what many of our neighborhood kids face.  It takes a strong person to continue to fight for his or her dreams, even when the odds are stacked against him or her.  I would like to share with you, in her own words, the story of one young woman that is paving the way for others in our community to pursue their dreams as she pursues hers.

My name is Iris Venegas and I’m a senior at Sumner Academy of Arts and Science. I’ve been attending Mission Adelante for about six years now, and currently I’m part of the Hispanic teens’ program at Mission Adelante. Being a senior, I’ve been working on college-related things like applying to colleges and working on scholarship applications.
The application process has been very difficult and new, since I’m the first in my family to graduate from high school and aspire to go to college. Through this process Megan McDermott (my friend and mentor) has been helping me with my personal statement, essay questions, and letters of reference.  So far, this process has been challenging and sometimes even disappointing, but it is nice to know that I’m taking advantage of an opportunity that not many have.
Some of the disappointments I have faced are being overwhelmed with the cost of medical school and not getting into the 6 year BA/MD program at UMKC, where I initially wanted to attend.  I have applied and gotten accepted for general admissions at KU, K-State, and UMKC.  I have chosen to attended KU and study medicine. My dream is to become a pediatrician and someday do medical missions. I am so thankful to all the people that have helped me with this process because I know that I would have not been able to do this on my own. 

The heartbeat of Mission Adelante is relationship and when the Lord provides a way for a young leader, such as Iris, to not only pursue college but to also have a desire to serve others in His name, we are blessed to walk alongside them!

In other news:
  • God continues to bless our Latino church with musicians.  This week a teen, Jaime, stepped up to play the drums at our worship service for the first time!
  • Bhutanese Teens Volunteers will be meeting together on Sunday for fellowship and to learn how to better engage our Hindu friends with the gospel. One of Mission Adelante’s Bhutanese House Church leaders will be sharing about his own journey from Hindu to Yeshu Bhakta ("Jesus Follower").

Prayer needs:

  • Pray for the family of one of our Latino church members who is mourning the loss of their older father.  Pray also for us as we minister to them at the funeral this Friday.
  • Please pray for a Bhutanese family, who lost a family member this past week.  Pray that Jesus would continue to reveal His character to them through our presence at the funeral last weekend.
  • Please pray that The Lord will provide good jobs for several people in our church community who are seeking employment.

Current needs:
  • We are searching for more drivers to join the Bhutanese Transportation Team for our Tuesday evening outreach. If you are available to drive our shuttle bus for one hour on Tuesday evenings (must be 25 years old, no CDL required), please contact Drew Hammond at
  • Expo dry-erase markers for use in the Bhutanese Kids Programs. Please contact Kristen at
Important dates:
  • Bhutanese Teens Volunteer Dinner and Training: Saturday, February 9 Email Hannah Hume at for more information.
  • Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Dinner: March 2 at Lauren Timberlake's house. Please contact Jenny Dunn for more details at
  • Observation Days: Tuesdays, March 5 & 12 (Bhutanese)/Thursdays, March 7 & 14 (Latino) 6:30-8:30  Have you wondered what all goes on around here on a typical evening of programming?  Here's your opportunity to come and see for yourself!
  • Bring-A-Friend Fund-Raiser for Bhutanese Teens Coordinator Hannah Hume: Saturday, March 9 Email Hannah Hume at for more information.