Blessed be the Name of the Lord

I don’t know were to begin in praising the Lord for His protection of the kids last Sunday. The kids where napping with one of the young ladies that watches them when some wiring in my other helper’s bedroom caught on fire. There was a soccer game in progress in the field nearby and the players helped get the kids out of the house safely and called the fire department. The fire totaly destroyed everything in that bedroom and had started into the next room by the time they put it out. Everyone was very shaken, but praise the Lord, no one was injured. Felipe and I are living in a guest house a good ways from the kids’ house, and we did not know what was going on until the kids were on their way to us.

The kids’ house, also known as “The Clinic”, does not have structural damage as the walls are cinder block, the floor is cement tile, and the roof is aluminum, but the plans are to go ahead and completely redo the wiring, ceiling, paint and tile in the whole 100 by 50 foot building, as well as completely renovate the kitchen. These repairs have been put off for several years. I have been told that a very rough estimate was made of $35,000 and anywhere from four months to a year to complete. In the mean time, the the nine boys will be living with Felipe and I, and the nine girls will be in the other guest house with my helpers. During the day, they will all be coming up to our house so I can watch them while my helpers are in classes.

It is also important that our house next to the kids be finished so we can be more involved in their care and safety when they return to “the clinic”. Construction has been very slow as Felipe has classes several days a week and almost all of the teen boys that help him have classes every afternoon. We have been having to hire workers from outside of the home. With this extra expense and the rise in cost of material, the original estimate is probably about $10,000 short.

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A New Journey Begins

Dear Church Family and Friends, June 11, 2022 

God has been so good to me, not just this year, but my whole life and especially the years that I have been serving Him.  

My fiancé, Felipe Deras, and I were married on May 14th of this year, which has been a wonderful blessing. My parents and one of my sisters were able to make the trip down for the wedding, for which I am so grateful. It wouldn’t have been the same without them. The Lord provided for all of the expenses for the wedding in very special ways. He also provided for Felipe and I to take a three-week honeymoon before getting started on our work here at the children’s home.  

Earlier this year I also had the privilege of visiting family and friends that I had not seen in years. It was my first time traveling during the pandemic and, although I had a few health and travel difficulties, it was an amazing trip full of reminders of how great and caring God is. Every difficulty led to a special, unexpected blessing. God’s people are always good to me, but this trip was something special. I cannot express how grateful I am to everyone for your prayers, support, and encouragement as I prepared for a wedding and many changes in my life. Thank you all so much. 

Between my trip to the states, wedding preparations, and honeymoon, it has been a crazy year so far, and many people ask me who helps me with the kids when I am gone for long periods of time. There are three young ladies who live permanently with me and the kids, and two church ladies who come during the day. I could not possibly do what I do without them. Please pray especially for Maria, Jacky, and Carmen as they continue to help me tremendously with the kids and also attempt to finish their education. It is very difficult for them and I am so proud of the effort that they make.  

Please pray that the Lord will provide for the completion of the house that is being built for Felipe and me. A huge raise in cost of materials and labor as put us at least $10,000 short of the original estimate. Although the guest house we are staying in in the meantime is nice, it is a bit far from the kid’s house, which means that I don’t spend as much time with the kids as I would like to. 

Also, please pray for Felipe as he is studying in the Bible Institute, building our house, and preaching in some of the churches. Pray for us as we serve the Lord together. 

Thank you all again for your prayers and support. I pray that you have a wonderful summer and that God richly blesses you as you serve Him. 

Love in Christ, 

Felipe and Christa  

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Happy New Year!

  Happy 2022!!!!  I just wanted to start off by thanking you all for another year of faithful support and prayers as we have gone through an especially hard year with the passing of Brother Ronnie Doss, the ministry’s founder and veteran missionary of over 30 years.  Please continue to pray for his family, especially Miss Joann, his wife of over 50 years.  Although this year started out so devastating, it has also brought me one of the greatest blessings that God has ever given me.  I am happy to announce my engagement to Felipe Deras, a young Honduran man that I have known for several years, and who has become very involved with the ministry in the wake of Brother Ronnie’s passing.  Felipe and the guys from the children’s home have started building a house for us, right outside of the building where I currently live with the kids.  The plan is for me to continue my work with the kids during the day and live close enough that my assistants can get me if they need something at night.  Felipe will be working with the other men on the property and helping me out with the kids when he can.  We have set the date for May 14th for our wedding. 

  I have always wanted men to be more involved with my kids, especially the boys, and that is what Felipe has been doing and will continue to do after we are married.  He has been particularly involved with the special needs kid, especially Gledis who has cerebral palsy and is now 18.  Felipe plans on being very involved with Gledis’ physical therapy. The Lord also provided for new leg braces for Gledis, which he has needed for a long time.  

  I currently have eighteen kids, nine boys and nine girls, ages 4 to 18 years old, eight of which have some special needs.

  On Thursday, Jan 6th, I flew in to the states on furlough for the first time since the covid pandemic.  I am both excited to see family and friends and nerve racked trying to figure out all the travel restrictions and requirements.  I’ve already had to alter my travel itinerary due to being sick (not with covid, praise the Lord), but still hope to visit family and churches in Alaska and Pennsylvania in the next two months.  The kids are being cared for by three of my helpers and a few teen girls.  Please pray for them during this time, especially as many of the people on the property are sick right now.

  I would like send a special thank you to Gloryland Baptist Church and all the amazing people involved in shipping the containers, especially during this Christmas season.  You make Christmas special for the kids.  I know they all loved their gifts.

    Thank you again to everyone for your prayers and support.  God bless in 2022!

Love in Christ,

Christa Miller

Missionary to Honduras 

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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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