In the year 2018 and up to this date we have worked on the vision of multiplying ourselves making a reality in our lives the great commission of making disciples: Matthew 28:19
Gaining lives for Christ.
In the Belen congregation (church in Habana) the scheduled activities are worship on Sundays, breakfast each Friday and vigils three times a month. Additionally, the members make kitchen towels, do cake raffles, which are brought by members to raise funds to celebrate collective birthdays every three months.
These activities are also carried out in Old Habana and Comenius Center, where now in addition to the children we have a recent congregation but one that is bearing fruits with 25 members.
In Belen we used to have twice per month the older adult program but now we are only doing it once per month as we don’t have enough funds.
During these meetings there are biblical teachings, a doctor or nurse is invited and they talk about ways to have a better lifestyle, this group not only consist of older adults from our congregation but also from the community who don’t profess any religion, so this is from the church to the community.
We have woman’s programs and gender on the battle against domestic violence, subjects such as how to restore self-worth. These workshops I hold every 2 or 3 months and the sisters from Habana Vieja and Habana participate according how we plan. We do dynamic returns and we hear testimony that are very uplifting to their lives. In these activities pastor Ezequiel’s congregation (Mt. Zion) is also involved.
In Comenius, the activity program with the children has been met. They get ride there 2 times per week for worship, there is also collective, and planned activities such as sports competitions in sports areas.
There is also the purified water service to the community.
Thanks to the funds from the foundation the construction of the building in Comenius was done, flooring, stairs, paint, concrete and all the rear is already done and now we have a classroom in the back for the youngest children where they can enjoy in addition to the classes tasty snacks because we have where to store the food.
Habana Vieja has grown in a great way, above all with the youth. We continue looking for a space because of the height of the current space many people cannot go up.
These months due to the circumstances with the Coronavirus, our church has played an important role and although in person worship services have been suspended, we are having virtual worship services, with groups through WhatsApp. We do reflections, meditations. The districts of Matanzas, Santa Clara and Habana are reaching our members through this way, and those who don’t have through phone calls and messages. These pastors have called me, and we have been collaborating ideas and agreeing as of how to reach all our members. We have looked for initiatives to reach the most vulnerable and alone families. In Habana, Matanzas, and Santa Clara several sisters are making masks to serve the community and have given one to all the brothers and sisters who don’t have one.
In Belen we did a research with 13 senior adults and with them 3 people with disabilities among
them our dear Georgina who no longer can walk and is very weak. In Comenius we have 3 children whose parents have no resources. I got together with the administrative board in April and I made a call to collaborate of our own resources so that at we can take them lunch and dinner least 2 times per week Brother today I’m very happy with my people they stepped up to serve they all contribute a sister and I cook, and two brothers take the food to the homes and our seniors are happy. The leaders have made visits and are praying. We have escaped with the masks because you have to remain home.
We also had Pastor Ezequiel with a serious personal situation and the members of the Belen congregation raised 20 cuc and we gave him an offering to help him in this way. We glorify God because in the midst of crisis and needs our church serves what is needed with what we have and never lacking his protection.
As far as Christian education: we have worked together with the Rev, Obed in the lectionary first Sunday school for children, adolescents and youth as well as classes for adults, also materials for pastoral work.
Joe directly from Coronavirus illness I have not had information of anyone. But we have affectations due to the situation that we are going through with brothers and sisters who have children that have ended up with no resources. Obed reported of 14 brothers. Pastor Aned of Santa Clara has 10 brothers and 2 older adults with terminal cancer. Habana 13 more 3 children of Comenius. Habana Vieja 5 senior adults.
These mentioned pastors and I have remained in daily communication and together we have looked for solutions with what we have, first prayer and then sharing and accompanying these brothers with what we can and the most essential, love and hope in the word of God, which must be the first thing in the life of believers.
Brother, I have done a summary of our activities and purpose. A thousand thanks for the accompaniment that you all have given us. May God bless you today and always.
Rev: Tania Sanchez
Note: Mayabeque, the province adjoining Habana to the east has very little internet access, so Pastor Iraide could not send a report. They are doing well and pastor Iraide is staying in contact with his members.