15 Years in Honduras!!

I just realized that this October marks fifteen years from when I first came to live in Honduras, and June ten years of living at the Hogar de Amor Children’s Home! Fifteen years ago I didn’t know anyone in Honduras and didn’t speak any Spanish. I also had no idea what all God had in store for those 15 years, but I can honestly say that I have never regreted following God’s leading in my life. I only wish that I could say that I have been as faithful to God as he has been to me, but that is not even close to the truth.

Over the last 15 years, the Lord has had me work with three different ministries, teaching at a bilingual christian school, a year teaching a national missionary’s kids, and the children’s home that I am currently serving in.

In the past ten years that I have lived in the Hogar de Amor children’s home, over 60 children have passed through our doors, some for a few days, weeks, or months, and others are still with us today. I don’t always see the results of my work as many kids have left and some I have never even heard of again, but the Lord has called me to take care of them as best I can, for however long they are with me. and let him take care of the rest. There have been highs and lows, good days and bad ones, triumphs and failures, and God has been faithful through every moment.

I thank the Lord for all of you who have supported me over the last fifteen years, and I pray that he will allow me to continue to serve him here for many more years to come.

God bless

Christa Miller

Honduras

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Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and for ever.

It’s so interesting to me that things can remain basically the same after so many changes in our lives in so little time.

As many of you know, we lost our pastor, veteran missionary, and founder, Brother Ronnie Doss to Covid in January during an extended visit to the states. His wife, Miss Joann, remained in the states with her family. They are both so greatly missed.

The new pastor, Pastor Uriel, has been in charge for over a year now, and is doing great, but with new leadership comes changes, because no one will ever be the same as the person they are replacing. Please pray for the pastor and his family. Especially pray that the Lord will provide help for him as the ministry is very extensive.

We are half way through the school year. This year is going much smoother than last year because the kids are receiving in-person classes a few times a week.

The guys here have started some projects around our house, the most important one being the new fence. We have a couple of special needs kids that cannot be contained by three strands of barbed wire.

The church auditorium has been totally renovated and looks like a new building.

We have had a few kids come and go this year, which is always hard.

I had the unfortunate experience of attending the funeral of a national missionary and pastor that I had worked with here in Honduras for a year. He was shot while dropping folks off after Sunday church. Please pray for his family to heal and the work there to continue and grow. They are a very close knit group of believers.

We have a young lady from a Bible seminary that is doing her internship here with us. She has been such a blessing, although I’m a bit concerned that we will get used to her being here and not know what to do when she leaves.

There are a few more differences in our lives now, but through all of these changes, big and small, I am SO relieved that Jesus Christ is always the same, and with so many uncertainties in our lives, one thing is certain, that Jesus Christ is and was and always will be, and that some day I will be with him, never again to wonder, “what’s next?”.

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Ronnie Doss, Founder

I would like to begin with thanking all of you who have been praying for Brother Ronnie Doss and the ministry here in Honduras. It is still very hard to put into words everything that has happened in the last few weeks. Firstly, Brother Ronnie and his wife and daughter left for the states in April for some health checkups and, due to travel restrictions and later two hurricanes, were unable to return in the time that he had hoped. An absence that was supposed to be for one month stretched into ten.

While they were waiting to be able to return, Brother Ronnie kept busy visiting many of his supporting churches, and spending time with his family. The last time I spoke with him he phoned me to ask the names of some of my kids that he was looking for sponsors for and, as always, he asked if I had heard if the airport was opened yet as he was eager to be home with us. I wish now that I had known that that would be the last time I would hear his voice. Wednesday, January 6th we were asked to pray because Brother Ronnie had been admitted to the ICU after weeks of battling covid. The next Wednesday, January 13th, we were told that he had passed away in the night.

I met Brother Ronnie in the summer of 2006, and for the past 15 years I have come to love and respect him. Since the day he accepted Christ as his saviour on January 4th, 1970 he has been dedicated and, in his words, addicted to serving the Lord. I am very thankful for the time that I was able to work with this man. For that is what he was. A man who put his trust in the blood of the Lamb, who loved the Lord and wanted nothing more than to see souls saved.

I have been asked if the ministry will shut down now that Brother Ronnie is gone. The mission board leaders in the states have assured me that the finances will be taken care of, and Brother Ronnie had turned the church and children’s home over to a national pastor before he left for the states. With God’s blessing we should be here for years to come.

Many people have said, “poor Brother Ronnie”, but we who know Christ as our Saviour do not share this sympathy for him. We rather rejoice for him and even envy him now that he is at rest with his Lord. Our sorrow comes from losing a dear friend and ally in this lonely world. He was not only a spiritual father to the people of Honduras, but to many he was the only father they ever knew.

My sympathy is for the kids who come to our children’s home in the years to come and only know of Brother Ronnie Doss from a picture hanging at church and from the countless stories told by the “old kids”, the kids who had the privilege to sit on Papi Ronnie’s knee.

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Ronnie Doss, March 2020, with Dayana

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Prayer Request

Nov. 3, 2020

Brother Ronnie Doss, who founded the ministry here in Honduras over thirty years ago, has been in the hospital for awhile with covid. Wednesday he was put in the icu and Friday he was intubated. We were informed this morning that his family has been called and he will be taken off life support. Please pray for a miraculous recovery for him and strength for his family, especially his wife, Miss Joann.

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God of the Valley

“It’s been an interesting year so far.”                                                                     July 28th, 2020

This is an excerpt from my last post which is dated March 6th.  Which means that it was written before the Honduran country was put on lockdown on March 13th.  If I had only known then that those first two “interesting” months would be the most normal ones of the year.  Things went from “interesting” to “pretty crazy” in a week, with very little possibilities of calming down any time soon.  We are still dealing with some lockdown, we are only allowed to go to town one day every two weeks based on the last digit of our photo ID number. So I can go every other Tuesday with my Honduran ID or every other Wednesday with my American passport.  Some stores ask for my ID, but the store I usually shop at doesn’t, which is a blessing.  The banks are very strict about the ID number.  They had changed the

IMG_20200317_161234Thank you to all who have prayed for Manuel with his seizures.  He is doing great.  He still has some tests pending, but he hasn’t had a seizure since the doctors changed his medicine a few months ago.  Anyone who has seen a child convulsing knows how terrifying it is, but the Lord has been good and kept Manuel safe.

We have been trying, with little success, to keep up with the kids’ homework assignments since school shut down in March.  At the moment we have one K4, one K5, one first grader, two second graders, three fourth graders, one fifth grader, and one sixth grader, not to mention one of my helpers is in eighth grade.  That does not include any of the special needs kids who are in school or need physical therapy or mental stimulation.  We aren’t doing such a great job, to say the very least.  Please pray for this situation to be resolved before I lose my mind.

The shipment of clothes and supplies for the children’s home is due to be shipped this weekend.  We have been told that there shouldn’t be a problem with getting it out of customs even though travel is rather hard lately.  Please pray that the container gets here safely.

Through these trying times the Lord is so faithful, and we ask for strength to be faithful, too.

Thank you all for for many prayers.

Keep your trust in God and not on things of man.

 

 

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Manuel

A “quick” update.  It’s been an interesting year so far.

It started out with a trip to the states for refreshing.  Then shortly after my return, we voted in Pastor Uriel as the new pastor and leader of the children’s home.  Pastor Uriel is a national pastor who studied at the Bible institute here at the children’s home.  His wife, Margarita, grew up in the home and also attended the Bible institute.  Pastor Uriel has been pastoring one of the church plants for over twenty years and appears to have a heart for the Lord and the ministry here.

Brother Ronnie, who has been on the field for thirty years, has plans to make rounds of his supporting churches.  He felt that this change was necessary due to his age and health issues.

Manuel, who is 12 years old, has been having light seizures once or twice a year since he came to live with us 7 years ago.  One neurologist had him on medicine, and the next took him off it.  This last October he started to have pretty bad seizures and more frequent.  His electroencephalogram came back good but he needs a CAT-scan as well.  Please pray that we will find why he is having more trouble with seizures and be able to control them.

 

 

 

 

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New Beginnings

Thank you all for another year of prayers and support for us at the Hogar de Amor Children’s Home.  It has been a year of new challenges as my role continues to shift and change as my children get older.

As a teenager, I had never in my wildest dreams considered the possibility that I would one day be living in a foreign country, much less raising foreign children, but the Lord had other plans for me that I couldn’t understand until he pushed me out of my comfort zone.

Ten years ago, I started working at the Hogar de Amor children’s home ministry in Honduras under Ronnie Doss and began working with the home’s ten youngest children, ages two to seven.  Eight boys and two girls.  Over the last decade, there have been over sixty children who have come under my direct care.  Some are still with us, but many have moved on, either to the older children’s dorms or back with their families, sometimes never to be heard of again.

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Nicol(4) and Douglas(3)

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Edwin and Christa

You may ask, “Is it really worth it to invest so much time, money, and energy into these kids if you don’t even get to see what becomes of them when they’re older?”  God has not called me to plan these kids’ lives from start to finish, or even to know His plan for them from start to finish.  God has called me to be there for them and instruct them for the days He has entrusted them to me.  I guess that goes for all parents, but we often forget and try to decide what will happen to them and what won’t, only to be frustrated and depressed when we fail miserably because it is a burden that is too great for us.  God knew that and he never asks us to do things that we can’t do.  That is where His power comes in.  That is His line of work.

Although this year has been a frustrating one for me as I often forget and, in my own strength, try to make my kids do right and make good choices, I am starting to learn that my responsibility is to teach them those things, not only by my words but primarily by my life and actions. And God will do the rest as they allow Him to.  Believe me, that is easier said than done.  Please pray for me as I try to be what God wants me to be in 2020.

This year has also been challenging as a couple of the kids have started having seizures.  This means more hospital and doctors visits and expensive testing.  The medication that they’re on is free through the public hospital, but it means a half-day appointment every three months.  Please pray that the Lord would provide, and that the doctors and I will have wisdom as we decide what is best for these special kids, especially for Manuel, one of my boys, who is starting to have seizures more frequently.

Manuel

Manuel

I love the ministry God has called me to and greatly appreciate your prayers and support that allow and enable me to serve here in Honduras.

Have a great 2020, and God bless you all.

Christa Miller,

Missionary to Honduras

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Sept 2019

 

I looked at the last time I updated and was so excited that it had only been a couple of months.  Then it dawned on me that May was a long time ago.  So sorry for the wait.

We have been busy with school, doctor visits, and therapy.

We also have a new face that didn’t make the group picture. 3-skarly-rivas.png

Skarly is five years old, and seems to be adapting well to our home.  She is very energetic and can be head strong, but she has already found a special place in my heart.  The problem is that there are now four kids in kinder and they are all leaders.  Not a single follower in the bunch.

Speaking of kindergarten, I was asked to help with the kinder class a few months ago.  I was teaching, but now am just helping another girl with preparing the lesson and she is teaching the class.  It seems to be working out.  The school year ends in November, so we are almost done.

3-nicol-hernandez.jpg  I just realized that Nicol is not in the picture either.  She and her sister have been with us since January.  She is super sweet.

Birthday season is upon us.  It gets to be that the kids expect cake and Pepsi all the time.  The good thing is that Gerson now understands the difference in his birthday and other peoples birthdays.

I would appreciate prayer for my teen helpers.  Some are not saved and others need to grow spiritually.  They have had some trials lately with family and friends leaving.

Hermana Denia, the lady who comes to help us, is recovering from surgery.  She is doing well, but gets very stressed to be sitting at home doing nothing.  She is such a blessing to us, and is greatly missed.  Please pray that her recovery will be quick and that God will give her grace to rest.5 H. Denia, H. Christa

I was told by a social service worker that Samuel, who you have been praying for, has been adopted by a family in Canada.  Some people will think of this as good news, but we have no idea what kind of spiritual ground he has arrived on.  My prayer for him is, and always has been, that God will do for our Samuel what he did for Hannah’s Samuel in the Old Testament.  Raised among people so wicked that God cursed them, yet he became one of the greatest prophets of all time.

Thank you all for your prayers and support (and your patience in getting updates).

God bless your harvest season.

Christa Miller, Honduras

 

 

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Belated Easter Update

Dear Family and Friends, January-April 2019
I pray you had a wonderful time celebrating the Lord’s resurrection. We certainly did. It was a blessing to have Brother Ricky Taylor and his wife with us for our conference this year. The preaching for this week is usually aimed at the unsaved and their need for the risen Savior, but this year seemed to be especially for me and my walk as a child of God. It was a very special time.
Since my last update (in December), we have started the new school year. We are trying to get a reading program started to help out the kids that are struggling, but it is hard to get the time and material to do it right and. I know that Peter and John were unlearned men who couldn’t read or write, but the Bible tells us to do all that we find to do with all of our might, and since the children spend so much time in school, I want to help to teach them to do their best at it.
We have celebrated several birthdays so far this year, one of them was for Reyna, who turned 13 on Resurrection Sunday. The Lord provided to be able to take her and some of her friends to eat pizza and ice cream. We had a great time. Please pray for this beautiful young lady as she does not claim to be saved.P1090121 - Copy
Plans are in place to move Celia, one of my older girls, in with the teen girls on Saturday (if I don’t back out). She has been with me for about seven years and it will be hard to see her go. I would appreciate your prayers for her (and me) during this time.
For those who are praying for Samuel, we have not heard anything more about his whereabouts, but he still needs your prayers. My prayer for Samuel is that God would keep him safe spiritually as he did Samuel the prophet.
Many people in Honduras don’t have a steady income, and will plant two staple crops, beans and corn, not to sell, but to feed their own families. They can’t plant without the rain, and I can’t remember the last time we had a normal rainy season where it rains…hard every day like clockwork. This has also caused a price rise, which makes it even harder for the common people to provide for their loved ones. Please pray that the Lord will have mercy on this thirsty land and these desperate people.
Thank you all for your support, be it spiritual, emotional, or financial. I definitely have my hard days, but the Lord always reminds me that as long as I am where He wants me to be, He will provide for ALL of my needs.
God bless you all. With love from Honduras,
Maria, Christa Miller, Jacky, Edwin, Juan, Gerson, Manuel, Gledis Celia, Reyna, Ana, Yareli, Marbella, Keyla, Wendy, Sherin, Douglas, Kristhian, Arelsy, Karen, Amanda, Michel, Kimberly, and Nicol

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R ‘n’ R

School is out.  All the sixth graders passed their big test and will be graduating on Saturday, Nov 17th.

Please pray for graduation and especially for four of my girls who will be moving up to the teen girls’ dorms.  Mrs. Julia Schenck will be seeing to their care.

Lilian(first on the left), Ester(second from left), Danely(fourth from left), and Dinora(bottom right pic) will be moving out one at a time over the next few weeks.  We usually send them all at once, but this time we will be doing it a little differently, to hopefully let them each get to know Mrs. Julia and get more comfortable with her rather than depending so much on each other.

We are still waiting to see what God will do in regards to Samuel, the boy that was taken by social service in August.  We pray that he is well and know that wherever he is, The Lord is taking care of Him.  This situation is yet another reminder that our time to influence and reach other people for Christ is so short.  Please pray that we will not get too mixed up with physically caring for the kids that we don’t have time or energy to care for them spiritually.  I don’t mean that we’d stop taking them to church or not even have church, but that our everyday lives would only be about us and how to keep everyone alive.  That is what the devil wants us to do.  We want to everyday in our daily lives we teach the children to love, worship, and serve the Lord Jesus Christ.

I am currently in Florida with some of my family, enjoying a time of rest and relaxation.  My younger sister is finishing up her schooling at PCC, and invited us to attend an art show were she has some pieces on exhibit.  I am so proud of her achievement and greatly enjoyed spending some time with her as she readies herself for the next chapter in life.  I hope to see great things from her in the near future.

Before I left for the states, I took Gledis, Gerson, and Edwin to a neurologist.  Gledis, who has cerebral palsy, is having migraines, and Gerson needed a check-up for his epilepsy.  Edwin, it was discovered, also has epilepsy and is now on medication for that.  Please pray for him as the medicine seems to be making him lethargic, which has slowed his rate of intellectual progress from baby steps to a crawl.

I will be heading back to Honduras on Thursday and would appreciate all you prayers for my traveling, the graduation on Saturday, Samuel’s well-being, and the home as a whole.

Thank you all for your prayers and support.  Please feel free to pass this blog onto others.

God bless and have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Christa Miller

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