While we were in Louisiana Ruth, Joanna, and I were able to attend the Louisiana State Ladies Retreat on March 10-11. The retreat featured wonderful speakers such as Ann Luellen and Cindy Hebert. I was honored to help in the music department by playing the keyboard. We had a great time.
The theme of the retreat was “Take Me Away” with spa style decorations giving an atmosphere of relaxation.
We would like to introduce the newest member to our mission team, Joanna Lynn. She was born into our world January 14, 2017 at 2:10 a.m. at home in Henderson, Tx weighing 9 lbs and measuring 21.25 inches long.
This was our first home birth and it was our best delivery experience to date. We really appreciate the help of our midwife Kristin Green of Seeds of Grace Midwifery. She was a true blessing to us and even prayed with us right before Joanna was born.
While we were waiting for God to provide a church to send us to Argentina, we visited a few churches to present our work. Our main hope in those visits was to see if God might provide a sending church. Churches we visited during this time were Calvary Baptist Church of Three Rivers, Michigan (June 2015) and Calvary Missionary Baptist Church of Livingston, Tx (December 2015).
We visited Nevill’s Chapel Baptist Church on April 3rd, 2016 after our last Sunday in Moss Hill, TX.
Walnut Street Baptist Church of Hillsboro, TX had us come out the following Sunday, April 10th.
That night Nevill’s Chapel called us to let us know they voted unanimously to sponsor us as Missionaries to Argentina. You can read more about our sending church in our previous post entitled – A Sending Church!!!
We left our children with grandparents in Hillsboro, TX and traveled to North Little Rock, Arkansas for the World Mission Seminar. We spent a very information packed two weeks learning from many veteran missionaries and pastors with special classes thrown in for the ladies. There is always something new to learn. We highly recommend everyone that has any heart for mission work to attend one of the seminars.
After the seminar ended Friday afternoon of April 22nd, we traveled back to Hillsboro, Tx to pick up our children and very early Saturday morning we loaded up in our Suburban and headed on a 4 hour trip to Hermleigh, TX for their district Ladies Auxiliary meeting and Mission Rally. Scott was given a moment to speak during the missionary share time at the meeting.
After the meeting ended we drove to Lubbock, Tx, checked into our hotel, and enjoyed pizza and games at Mr. Gatti’s Pizza with Bro. Monty & Sis. Terry Hilliard.
We visited Quaker Avenue Missionary Baptist Church the next morning for their services. We set up a table with information about Argentina and our new prayer cards. Then Scott spoke to one of the youth classes with Hannah, Jonathan, and Elijah. After Sunday School he gave our presentation and sermon after the morning worship service.
This coming Sunday we have an appointment at Mt. Sylvia Missionary Baptist Church of Mt. Pleasant, TX and that evening we will be attending Nevill’s Chapel again to officially move all our church memberships there.
We have exciting times ahead. We are working on our first monthly newsletter so join our email list if you haven’t already to make sure you don’t miss a thing.
We want to thank everyone for praying for us. God is moving in mighty ways. Now we’re trying to tie up all our loose ends and make more deputation appointments.
Right now we are starting local deputation on the weekends and then going into full time deputation in August.
Please continue to pray for us that we get through this transition as quickly as possible and that we raise the prayer and financial support we need to move onto the field in Argentina.
Sunday, April 4th, we visited Nevill’s Chapel Baptist Church for our first deputation appointment after Scott resigned his pastorate at New Hope Missionary Baptist Church. Our appointments at this point have been to primarily see if someone would consider being our sending church.
That Saturday evening we pulled our travel trailer to their trailer hook-up spot and took the kids to Sunday School. Everyone was so nice to our family and we enjoyed the services.
That morning we were blessed to witness the baptism of Bro. Griffith’s grandson and to hear Bro. Griffith preach.
That afternoon we had dinner with Bro. Findley and were able to hear how God has been working in Nevill’s Chapel. We were also able to share what God has been doing in our lives and our plans are on the field.
We went back to Nevill’s Chapel for their evening services and Scott presented our burden to go to Argentina to start new churches throughout the country. Currently we have no churches or mission works from the American Baptist Association in Argentina.
Last Sunday night, April 11, as we were driving to the World Mission Seminar, we received a call from the pastor announcing that the church voted that night to be our sending church.
We now have a sending church! We are so blessed to have a church with such a heart for missions to come along side us and send us to Argentina. What great news to be able to share with our friends at the World Mission Seminar. We are now at a new level of preparing to go.
We are starting an email list for our monthly newsletter that we will be preparing to send out May 1st. We would love for you to sign up to follow us on our journey.
During business meeting, February 14, 2016, Scott gave New Hope Missionary Baptist Church his notice of resignation as pastor.
After much prayer and discussion we decided it was time to step out in faith and free up our Sundays to be available to speak at potential sending churches.
Our last Sunday was March 27, Easter Sunday.
We chose Easter in order to take one last picture of our youth standing in front of the church. Every year for the past eight years we have taken pictures and seen how much the children grow in each one.
To the outside world uprooting our family and moving into a travel trailer to pursue God’s calling for us to go to Argentina seems crazy. However we know what God is calling us to do and all we want is to follow His leading and step through the doors He opens before us.
We enjoyed a time of food and fellowship with our friends and church members.
After the fellowship we sat in the church building with our children playing instruments and singing together.
The hardest part of all this transition is saying good-bye to friends we have come to love over these past eight years. It’s very hard to see tears filling in their eyes knowing things won’t be the same for us nor for them.
Despite the pain of saying good-bye we are still excited to see what the Lord will do in this next phase of our life.
We have an awesome God and we look forward to going through the next doors He opens for us.
In my last post about our 3rd Week in Argentina I told about our time in Buenos Aires, Pilar, and Posadas. God really blessed us during the week that we spent in those cities.
One thing I forgot to mention in our 3rd week post was the Quinceñera. There was a preacher’s daughter that was having a 15th Birthday party and the Greenwoods’ daughter was invited to the party. Scott had the opportunity to talk with a lot of preachers we would not have had time to meet if it hadn’t been for that party. After the party when we all went to pick up their daughter we talked with several preachers from different parts of the country that we had talked about wanting to visit.
God worked in so many ways like that on this trip. It is like He is holding open the doors for us saying, “Yes, go this way. You’re headed in the right direction.”
Thursday, September 25: Scott and I went to the station and caught the bus back to Córdoba, Argentina.
While on the bus we met three college students from the United States. Any time you here the words, “Cool!” and “Like” in the same sentence you can pretty much tell where they are from. 🙂
We really had a lot of opportunities to talk about God on this trip. Every time someone asked us why we were there, we were able to share the burden God has laid on our hearts.
After explaining the purpose of our trip to the college students behind us, Scott struck up a conversation with the man in the seat in front of us. The man was raised a Jehovah Witness and Scott was able to talk with him for at least an hour or two about Jesus and the Bible.
Friday, September 26: We spent a very cold night on the bus and were happy that we had a room reserved for the rest of our week.
We went to a restaurant for a late breakfast. I learned that a submarino is not a submarine sandwich. I also learned that I like submarinos which are a hot chocolate milk. After breakfast we walked to a section of the city we hadn’t visited yet.
We walked around a park and visited the Museum of Natural Science. Walking around the museum reading all the signs in Spanish was very good for our vocabulary. We learned some new words.
Saturday, September 27, 2014:
We caught up on some writing and then that evening we went to an improvisational show one of our first friends in Argentina was performing. The two actors were acting out the life of a teenage girl that they picked from the audience. I didn’t understand all of it but I understood some and Scott explained the rest to me on our walk back to our hostel. They were funny and we had fun. Several of the friends we met during our first day in the country were there. We enjoyed the show and the company of our friends.
Sunday, September 28, 2014:
The last of our trip we had two churches left to visit that we had not been to before on our trip but they were recommend to us at different times on our trip.
We visited the morning service of a Non-Denominational Church during their morning service. Again I didn’t understand much but afterward Scott told me it wasn’t bad. There was quite a crowd there and they had a nice building. We visited with a lady before the services. After services were over we pretty much disappeared into the crowd and headed out to get a bite to eat and then back to our hostel.
Sunday evening we got on a bus and went to Iglesia Bautista Vida Abundante (Abundant Life Baptist Church) on the south side of Córdoba. We walked a short way from the bus stop to the church.
We made it to the front gate of the church early. We didn’t have to wait long until a cute little blonde headed girl about Elijah’s age came outside and talked with us in Spanish through the fence. She said that the pastor was not there but her father was inside. At that moment her father came out and greeted us in Spanish as well.
We went inside and met the man’s wife who asked us in Spanish, “Where are you from?”
Scott replied, “Estados Unidos en el estado de Texas.”
She replied, “Cool!” and English immediately commenced.
The two families we first met there were both Missionaries. They had only been there a few months and were very happy to share with us their experiences in getting their residence papers and moving onto the field. You can read more about them at the The Averys Online.
We then met the pastor and enjoyed their services. We were really impressed by the Bible drill they had at the beginning of their evening service. They had everyone hold their Bibles up. One person called out the text to look up and whoever found the passage first stood up and read it. Scott and I both liked how that taught the members to learn their Bibles and how to find things themselves.
That night Scott and I followed both families to one of their homes to visit and fellowship. We learned a lot about what all it took to bring their families over. We also learned what we need to do to prepare ahead of time. Then everyone shared stories of language learning mistakes which had us all laughing.
We had such a good time that it grew late before we knew it and we called for a remise (a type of taxi) to take us back to our hostel. A funny story during our taxi ride home the meter in the taxi was broken and we thought the price was going up fast with every block. Finally Scott asked our driver about the price and he laughed and explained the meter was broken and the decimal point was in the wrong spot. So when we saw the price climbing past to 200 pesos it was actually only passing 20. Decimal points may be a small mark but they make a big difference.
Monday, September 29: We were finally winding down our trip and only made a few more plans to finish up our trip. We wanted to buy a few gifts for our children and I had a list of a few items I wanted to see if they had at their Walmart and I wanted to look at Carrefour another store similar to Walmart. So around lunch time we ate a bite and went down to the bus stop to catch the bus headed toward both stores.
We didn’t want to miss our stop so we got off a little early and walked to the Carrefour. A young man that got off at the same stop we did thought we were lost. He warned us not to go the direction he and a group of students that got off at the same stop were going because that was a bad neighborhood. We thanked him for the warning and explained we were actually headed the opposite direction and pointed toward the store.
We walked to the Carrefour gates and realized there were no cars in the parking lot. It was around 2 in the afternoon. We had assumed they would be open all day.
Walmart was only a mile or two away so we decided to walk there. While we were walking, I told Scott I wanted to buy a hat first thing. As we crossed the road toward the gates, Scott started laughing. I looked up and “Oh no!” They were closed too. Obviously we didn’t get the memo that it was a holiday and the bigger businesses were closed.
That evening we found this protest forming on a normally busy street. A large crowd of women and men were blocking the road banging on pots and pans. Scott took this picture of the protestors as we crossed the road. Scott asked one of the shop owners what the protest was about. She just said that someone had died 2 weeks ago.
Later we found out from one of our friends that a woman and her baby were killed by her ex-husband. The people were protesting wanting justice for the woman and her baby. You can read the story in Spanish at La Mañana de Córdoba.
Tuesday, September 30:
We went by the bank to exchange our pesos back into dollars before our flight the next morning. However the bank was closed. I guess the holiday lasted more than just one day. So instead of exchanging the money we decided to have lunch.
Later that afternoon we had coffee and submarinos (hot chocolate milk) with the Missionary, Bro. Masters, that we visited earlier in the month and his wife.
Then our last dinner in Argentina we enjoyed with the Jacksons. They had us at their home earlier in the month and they wanted to take us out to eat before we left.
Wednesday, October 1:
We called a taxi very early our last morning. The driver made very good time to the airport. Scott is pretty sure our driver would win at Nascar.
We caught our flights back home where our children were eagerly waiting with lots of hugs and pictures for us.
And this ends my summary of our trip. I am also in the middle of creating a short slideshow about our trip that I will share as a video or slideshow on here soon. I will probably have a few more stories from our trip pop up from time to time as well.
Thanks for following along! And as always if you have any questions for us feel free to ask them in the comments or by email.
I’ve been talking so much about my husband and myself. My next post I will share some of what the kids were up to while we were gone.
So if you’ve been missing pictures of the kids stayed tuned. I’ll be talking about them in my next post.
~♥~ Anastacia “Stacie” Maness ~♥~
We have just finished our third week of our time here in Argentina. We have only one more week to go before we fly back home to our family in the United States. The time has been going by so fast. We have been staying very busy and meeting so many people during this trip that it is hard to get it all into these blog posts.
Let me just say that these posts are more of a summary of our trip. We have learned so much more from this trip that these posts would be very long if I wrote it all. So for now I will stick with the summary and later fill in some details when I have more time.
Wednesday, September 17: We packed our bags, got some empañadas, and took our luggage to the nearby train station. Scott had already reserved a room on the sleeping car for us to stay in during our overnight trip to Buenos Aires. It may have been quicker to take a bus but the train would be more comfortable and it was the same price as one night in a hostel. Scott had never ridden on a real passenger train before. I only riding a small one for a field trip in school. A train ride in a real sleeping car was a fun new experience for us.
I could write a whole blog post just about the train ride but this is suppose to be a quick summary of the whole week! So I will just say for now that we really enjoyed the train ride and took a lot of pictures. Maybe I can share some of those in a later post.
Thursday, September 18: The train dropped us off at the station in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Scott and I found a hotel. We then ventured out to explore a little of the city.
We had our picture taken beside a giant over 200 year old rubber tree. We walked through the Recoleta Cemetery. Recoleta is a very old and very famous cemetery in Argentina.
After touring the cemetery, we toured the museum inside the church next door. The church has a very interesting history. The monks that once lived there had a 12 acre orchard and vegetable garden where the cemetery now stands. I have a lot of deep thoughts in places like this.
My husband and I looked out a window over the orchard where Recoleta Cemetery now stands. What would the Monks that gave up everything to live a life of poverty say about their beautiful orchard turning into a cemetery that boasts the city’s most valuable real estate?
Those windows are the same windows where monks would kneel looking out over their garden and pray. They vowed a vow of strict poverty. They denied themselves earthly pleasures. I wonder if that orchard and garden was the one thing they were allowed to enjoy.
Now it is a place for people to tour and for those who can afford to pay to be buried in the most coveted resting place in Argentina.
Friday, September 19: We took another train to a neighboring town of Pilar. While there we met a wonderful Missionary family, the Greenwoods. We learned a lot from them. The Greenwoods have been Missionaries in Argentina for 9 years. They answered many of our questions and shown us many things about life in Argentina.
Saturday, September 20: We attended the Greenwoods’ Mission for their Evangelism Ministry. We passed out tracts in the city’s plaza area where many people were enjoying the weather. We were impressed by how open people were to receiving the tracts the group passed out. Sunday, September 21: Scott accepted Bro. Greenwood’s invitation to preach that morning and gave a message from Acts 16 about following God’s call through closed and open doors.
Monday, September 22: They took us to an all you can eat buffet called “Sigue La Vaca” translation “Follow the Cow”. The food was really good!
After the meal we walked around a shopping center. Then back at the Greenwoods’ home we packed our bags and got ready to catch the bus to Posadas.
Tuesday, September 23: We arrived in Posadas took a taxi to the hotel. I got a little bit of a sunburn. Okay, for me it was a lot of a sunburn but that’s just how it is with sensitive skin and Rosacea. I don’t have to be in the sun long before my face is as red as a beet.
Argentina is in the southern hemisphere below the equator. That makes their seasons opposite of ours in the United States. Right now it is Spring here in Argentina and the north is hotter than the south.
Wednesday, September 24: We take a walk around Posadas. We escaped from the heat during the siesta hours and then went back out to walk along the river. From the sidewalk we could look out across the river to Encarnación, Paraguay.
Thursday, September 25: Scott and I checked out of our hotel and had breakfast in their lobby. Our bus was scheduled to leave that afternoon so I stayed at the hotel with our bags while Scott went to talk with someone at a church a few blocks away. The man he talked to explained some of the beliefs of their association of churches. Not all Churches that call themselves Baptists believe the same things. After Scott got back we both sat down to get everything written that we’ve been learning. After we worked on our computers for a while, we called a taxi and went to the bus station heading back to Córdoba.
Scott and I are in the middle of week 4 of our journey. It’s been a full month. After this week’s post I will share several posts taking a little deeper look at what we have seen and learned during our time here in Argentina.
Thanks for following along with us. As always if you have any questions feel free to ask in the comments or by email. Stayed tuned for week 4 which I will post towards the end of this week.
~♥~ Anastacia “Stacie” Maness ~♥~