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Missions To Latin America – Part 2

MEXICO

From Argentina we went to Mexico City to give the Marriage Enrichment Retreat to the first Couples for Christ graduates. It was a beautiful retreat that transformed the hearts of the participants who had differences between them. After the MER, we opened 2 CLPs: at the Parroquia de Nuestra Senora de Lourdes and at the Parroquia de Maria Auxiliadora. Again the CLPs were given in Spanish because no one could speak English.

In the Parish of Maria Auxiliadora, there were more participants because the first group of CFC members had gathered and invited the new participants. In the Parish of Nuestra Senora de Lourdes, there was only an invited core group. They would take care of inviting more couples in the future. It was Father Marlon Beof (whom we met through Philippine Ambassador to Mexico, Ambassador Delia Menez Rosal) who introduced us to parishioners before he left for home for vacation. He also introduced us to the parish priest Father Jose Antonio Arias who gave us his full support in setting up Couples for Christ in his parish. Previously assigned in Spain for 5 years, Father Marlon is a Filipino who saw the transformation of many members of his family in Palawan through the Couples for Christ community. Now Father Marlon is back in Mexico as acting parish priest and is now inviting couples for the next Christian Life Program we hope to conduct.

In that CLP at Nuestra Senora de Lourdes, the venue started at the parish conference hall. But after 2 sessions there, the participants requested to have it in their individual homes. While they were away, they had no one to look after their little children. So we got to meet all their children; we got to bless all their homes and even had a family day after the CLP at an Italian restaurant. As we were finishing this first CLP, the participants liked it so much that they asked us if we could stay to do another for their friends. We had however to leave for Costa Rica where a group was waiting for their own CLP.

There were 4 Chileans in the group who asked to bring CFC to Chile. A Cuban, married to a consul from Austria, asked too for CFC in Cuba! Previously assigned for 3 years in Colombia also, this couple asked that CFC goes to Colombia as well. Invited by Father Marlon himself, this couple Gerhard and Maria Elena Fittner invited the rest of the group in the Parish of Our Lady of Lourdes. It is amazing how the Lord put so much love between the graduates and the mission team. We were together for only 6 days and yet we had such a hard time saying our goodbyes. There were tears in our eyes. One CLP graduate in the Parish of Maria Auxifladora, Maria de Ia Luz Bernal Sanchez, wrapped her white shoes in a plastic bag and went home walking barefoot leaving the shoes with one of the team members to give to me because I said that she looked so beautiful, so elegantly dressed, and I praised her beautiful pair of shoes. They are such wonderful brothers and sisters.

In that first parish that accepted CFC in Mexico - Parish of Nuestra Senora del Perpetuo Socorro y San Jose, the assistant parish priest Father Victor brought Edwin and me to a nearby community of about 35 homes, where people are distant from the Lord. We promised to set up a CLP for them when we get back.

COSTA RICA

Republica de Costa Rica (Republic of Costa Rica)

People:

Population: 3.5 Million

Ethnic groups: White (with mestizo minority) 96%.

Principal language: Spanish (official).

Religions: Roman Catholic 95%.

Geography:

Area: 19,730 square miles

Location: Central America

Neighbors: North: Nicaragua, S: Panama

Topography: Tropical lowlands by the Caribbean. An temperate interior plateau with an altitude of 4,000 ft.

Capital: San Jose, 1 Million population

Government Type: Republic.

Head of state: President

Local divisions: 7 provinces

Since it would be a small group in Costa Rica, we parted company with Pompoy and Marilen Dinglasan in Mexico. We left Mexico for Costa Rica.

Our mission to Costa Rica was again planned so beautifully by the Lord. The sequence of events goes this way.

On the day we left Manila for Argentina, we received a call from Eric de los Reyes, a Cluster Head of CFC Batangas. He continued to call us from Manila even when we were in Argentina. We gathered the following: a group from Intel Company (computer chips manufacturer) in Costa Rica is interested in a CLP; we had to contact the General Manager of Intel. From that contact, we met Junn and Emma Benito, who had taken their CLP in Manila. They became our wonderful hosts in Costa Rica. With the full support of Intel General Manager Cesar Quiason, everything went on smoothly.

The group is already very close to the Lord - most already serving in their different parishes. Juno and Emma assisted us very much in this CLP. Costa Rica will have the best Music Ministry in the whole South and Central America and Mexico because it will be led by Cesar and Judy Quiason. Cesar, a composer, was a professional musician. He is ready to take care of the music in the International Conference in the Latin American countries assisted by Junn Benito. This group of graduates from Costa Rica is ready to serve in the next CLP. A member of this group is Puerto Rican and is planning to accompany us to Puerto Rico to set up CFC there. Cesar Quiason will arrange for our mission in Puerto Rico by calling on the General Manager of Intel Puerto Rico.

Our God is really a wonderful God. He is almighty and all-powerful; He is a faithful God. We now have 149 members of Couples for Christ in Latin America (Mexico, Central America and South America) with many more to come in the next mission. It is so true that when you ask Him for something you will receive it. But ask for it with a very strong faith. Edwin and I ask the Lord daily to use us mightily in His mission and to call all our children and the rest of our family to serve Him in Couples for Christ and its Ministries. We have also never failed to ask Our Lady of Guadalupe to intercede for us and assist us all throughout our mission. Another prayer was answered. He has called all our employees at Casa Nila Restaurant and our other offices to serve Him in the new CLP we opened in Casa Nila for the employees, family and friends of the nearby restaurants. There are 51 participants who came in the Orientation talk and more coming. We praise God for His bountiful blessings and for His wonderful work! By Hila Andrews

Back to Part 1

Religion | Christianity | Society | Organizations | Regional | South America


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