Sunday, November 28, 2010

Greg's Nov 2010 Newsletter: La Llama, Vol 3

LA LLAMA (The Flame”): November 2010

Happy Thanksgiving from La Serena, Chile, and welcome to the 3rd volume of my monthly newsletter ‘La Llama.’ I hope you have a great Thanksgiving this year with your loved ones, and are able to thank God for His goodness in your life this year. I know it has been difficult year for many, due to so many different things, and yet God is always faithful to see us through if we turn to Him.

Down here I’ve been explaining the Thanksgiving tradition to Pepe & Gislaine and they love the idea. In fact Gislaine wants to have our own Thanksgiving meal on Thanksgiving too, so we’ll be looking for some turkey to cook too. I also want you to know that I am so thankful to YOU for your love, prayers, encouragement, friendship, and financial support. Without all of you, the ministry of Fuego Urbano simply would not be possible. So thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

FIRST: Fuego Urbano began a couple Saturdays ago and we are now meeting regularly. We’ve only met twice so far and our group is small but committed and excited, so I would ask that you pray for God to guide us and open doors with the young people here in La Serena. So far we have been talking about the vision for Fuego Urbano so that those who come are clear on what we hope and pray Fuego Urbano will be. Below is a photo from our first meeting: 
SECOND: We’ve decided to focus our efforts in La Serena in the area known as ‘La Compañía,’ which is where the skatepark is located and where we have developed lots of great relationships with the local youth. La Compañía is the poorest area of La Serena and has the highest rates of violence, drugs, crime, and gang activity in the whole area. In fact the reason the city built the skatepark and the sports facilities next to it (see photo below) was to try and get the youth out of the destructive cycles of violence, drugs, and crime, and into some more healthy and productive activities.

On top of that there simply no evangelical churches in this area; because of these realities, along with the incredible relationships we have been able to develop with so many of the youth in the area, we have talked and prayed and feel like we simply MUST focus on that area of La Serena, even though it’s further away from our house. So that is what we are now doing.

I’d like to share with you about the whole skatepark experience for us in La Compañía so you know that it’s like. We only started going there 2 weeks ago but already when we show up now it’s like walking into a house full of people who are so glad to see us and greet us as we walk in. It’s hard to put into words but God has really been at work opening the kids’ hearts and minds to both us, and to the hope in Jesus that we share with them. We’ve shared with them about Fuego Urbano and how we’re trying to set up meetings in their neighborhood and almost all of them want to come. Once, as I was sharing our vision with a bunch of the kids, a young skater of 10 years old raised his hand as if he were in class and asked: ‘ Y puedo venir?’…meaning: ‘And can I come?’ Another BMX’er who I’ve gotten to know well offered his own house so we could meet there. So you see the kind of responses we’re getting from these young people who are so spiritually hungry. And another young skater, Henry, who is about 16 has taken me under his wing to teach me all about skating the bowls. This has been a huge blessing because Henry is the best bowl-skater there and I’ve been able to develop my deepest bond with him; and as the best bowl-skater, he holds lots of influence with the others.

So Please Please Please pray for us because the city built the skatepark, and as part of the general facilities they also built a large multi-purpose room with 2 basketball/soccer courts, 2 ping-pong tables, and a pool, right across the street from the skatepark (See picture below). We are currently talking with the administration about allowing us to have our Fuego Urbano meetings right there, which seems too good to be true, but they have already offered to some degree. So please pray God would open the hearts and minds of the administration to let us use these facilities for Fuego Urbano. And if they do, we would also move our upcoming summer ministry programs to this same neighborhood and to these same facilities, which would be an unbelievable blessing and opportunity! So please pray!!!

THIRD: Online payments on my blog were gone but are now available once again. However, we still cannot do automatic payments so I’ll have to ask you who prefer to give online to do your best to remember; you might want to let my monthly letters/emails be your monthly reminders? Just click this link  or go to the 'Donate' button here on my blog. And as usual, checks may be made out & mailed to ‘Fishers of Men Fellowship’, PO Box 9284, Newport Beach, CA, 92658.

FOURTH: The House is coming along but is still only partially furnished, though we have the basics covered. Thanks so much for those who gave more so we could get settled! We still only have plastic patio chairs and a matching plastic table, but things are coming along and we appreciate your continued support for all these things!

Thanks so much for all you love and support; we all wish you the best this Thanksgiving,

Greg Haugh
Fuego Urbano

Monday, November 8, 2010

New Car, 1st Fuego Urbano Meeting, & Skatepark

Hey Everyone,
It's been a pretty busy week and a half or so down here in Chile and I wanted to give you all a head's up on things before they got away from me. We moved into our new house on Nov 1 which you've seen pictures of, but we also got a car last week which was a huge blessing and relief. It has given us mobility and opened up so many doors to get things done and to open up doors to ministry. We got a Hyunadai Santamo which fits 7 comfortably but doesn't use as much gas as other bigger cars. Here's a picture of it and there's more on the Fuego Urbano Facebook page.  Thanks so much!!
After moving in last week we also had our first Fuego Urbano meeting/service at our house this past Saturday and it went awesome. There were only 8 of us but it went really well and everyone was really excited about the vision. I taught on the Parable of the Pharisee & The Tax-Collector, and we used that to talk about what we hope the attitude, heart, and mentality of Fuego Urbano will be. We also know lots of people who are really excited to come but could not make it last Saturday for various reasons, so we expect that we'll see more people this weekend. There are more pictures of our first night on the Fuego Urbano Facebook page, but the picture below gives you glimpse of the night...

Lastly, we also went to the local skatepark yesterday and began part of our outreach work there. It was super fun and God really blessed us because we met lots of the best skaters there and instead of them being closed off or unfriendly to outsiders, we hit it off and got to talk and share with them for a couple hours. It was awesome! Please pray God would keep opening the doors for us there and that He would show us the best way to reach this young people and also help to incorporate them into Fuego Urbano, since the skatepark is a little further away from the side of town we're on. Still, it was a great day and great beginning to the ministry we hope to do there. Below is a picture from our day there but as usual, if you want to see more you can see them on the Fuego Urbano Facebook page...
 Thanks again for all your help, prayers, and support! We could not do this without you all...Blessings from all of us to all of you!

Greg, Pepe, Gislaine, & Gabriel