Thursday, February 16, 2012

Grand Service of Inauguration

Missionary Connie, far left, celebrates the baptism of  Francia, center,
and tells us about the growing church in the Dominican Republic.
(photo courtesy of Connie DiLeo)

I am not sure how I can put into words the tremendous feelings we had on this special day when our church in La Hoya was officially inaugurated by the Evangelical Church of the Dominican Republic. The pastors from all the churches in the southern region were present with representatives from their churches.

Many pastors and congregational members also came from the capital and even as far as La Romana towards the east of the country. We are still considered a ‘mission church’ as we are new and have just taken in our first membership class of twelve baptized members.

Pray that we will continue to grow and bring more lives to Christ in the days, months, and years to come.

For more about this Global Ministries missionary, visit Connie DiLeo's missionary bio page.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Your support helps the families of Maria and Roberto

Church and Community Worker Brynne Howard, here with her husband,
as she was sworn in by the Iowa Bar Association.
She writes here about one of the many stories from JFON.
(photo courtesy of Brynne Howard)

Maria and Roberto first came to Justice for Our Neighbors (JFON) in 2007. Maria, a US citizen, wanted to apply for her husband, Roberto. Because he initially entered the United States without a visa, Roberto had to return to Honduras to proceed based on Maria's petition. Roberto had his first visa appointment at the US consulate in Honduras in September 2009. Unfortunately, the consulate was understaffed at the time and Roberto's application was lost in a huge backlog of cases.

After several months Maria, desperate to be with her husband, moved with their three children to Honduras. Unfortunately, the living conditions were very difficult for Maria and she was unable to find a job to support her family there. When Maria came back to the United States, she was forced to move in with family and sadly lost her home, her car, and other possessions.

Despite these challenges, Maria never lost faith that she and her husband would be reunited. With the help of JFON, Roberto was finally granted his permament residency and was allowed to re-enter the United States in December 2011. After a long and painful separation, this last Christmas was a special one for Maria, Roberto, and their children.

Maria and Roberto's story is just one of the many stories we have seen this year of families separated by our unjust immigration system.

Learn how you can help support JFON as we provide vital legal advice to these immigrant families by checking out the Iowa JFON website here.

You can also support my ministry with Justice for Our Neighbors, as well as the ministry of Church and Community worker missionaries across the US. Learn more from the bio page of Brynne Howard and make an online donation to missionary salary suport.