As I begin this post, our world has radically changed. In the coming weeks I plan to bring updates from our global partners and how the spread of covid19 is impacting them personally and in their work.
Our trip to Panama Feb 26-March 2 was highly successful! Jose and Rosa are doing a superb job. They will launch Central Church Panama, currently meeting as 4 house churches, once travel restrictions are lifted. Not only did we meet with some of these house churches while there, but we also were present for 26 baptisms of the indigenous Guaymi people when visiting their churches in the mountains. Remember Jose and Rosa as they faithfully serve God in Panama.
With the global travel restrictions and health concerns we currently face, we have postponed indefinitely the 6 trips we had planned from March-June. This was a painful but necessary decision, made in consultation with our global partners and church leadership. We do want to reschedule when our world is more free to come and go. No prediction when this will happen. We trust God with the timing. Our trips for October remain in place.
Because of this unique situation, we are honoring all funds deposited for these postponed trips to be applied to the trip member who raised them on the rescheduled trip or another global trip this year or next. We are no longer accepting donations for global trips due to the unpredictability of travel. We will be piloting a “pledge” system for upcoming trips and will accept funds only when we give the green light for a trip to go. This allows trip members to seek support via pledge cards and the donors to give closer to time of the trip going. We are currently working on this process and will work with team leaders on putting this in place.
One other update related to Global Impact at Connection Pointe. Teresa Byington has retired from staff. Many of you were aware, and you know what a gift she has been to our global work these last 5 ½ years. We were able to honor her as a staff in early March. Before she finished, she spent time training her successor; Teddy Haubner. I believe that transition has gone extremely well!
Teresa, we are all honored and we thank you. You are an exemplar of service, grace and love.
Teddy, welcome to a world in global scramble! Looking forward to God’s next steps as we continue to engage with His global Kingdom.