Journals, Serve
Posted on January 29, 2018 A Gathering of Talents

The Short-Term Mission Office helped facilitate the registration of two new volunteers to be on assignment for three months at AMOS, an IM ministry, in Nicaragua. Helios and Lisa traveled from Battle Ground(WA) to share their skills and talents in the name of Jesus. Their sending church is the First Baptist  Church in McMinnville in Oregon. Cross cultural travels and mission are not new calls to them. In this season of retirement, Helios and Lisa have felt called to come alongside staff at AMOS (, and share of their gifts for more than two weeks or a month. Here are their first impressions upon arriving at AMOS, and the positive energy they found themselves enveloped in:                                                                                                                                                             “One of the things that most impressed us during our first week on AMOS campus is the amount of energy and activity that is going on simultaneously on this campus. It was very exciting to meet some of the newer staff and guests, and understand their roles at AMOS. We met a wonderful young lady from Kentucky, Oksana, who before returning to pursue her post graduate degree at Vanderbuilt University, is here for six months and has been working diligently on developing the Early Childhood Development curriculum. This was implemented earlier in January, with the help of a team from California.

We met a few doctors who were here with a partner organization called “Hand in Hand Ministries .“ They provide scholarships to youth, for education, healthcare, basic needs to help youth not just finish primary and secondary education, but to go on to college as well. They brought a Pediatrician, Oncologist, Neurosurgeon, two Primary care physicians, a few nurses and residents as well. Not only did they see patients at the AMOS clinic, but they went out to other settings.

We met Dr. Maria E. Penaranda, who works with the “Sustainable Science Institute” (SSI). They work with NGO’s to help them validate their data, hopefully help them publish their data, which can greatly improve their chances at getting grants. Dr. Penaranda is a very interesting person. She worked at the CDC in Atlanta before accepting a position at UCSF. Once her husband wanted to retire, she took on her current position with SSI, and splits her time between San Francisco and Costa Rica. We were moved by her commitment and desire to help this Christian organization.                                                                                                                                        This is just a snapshot of a day, a week in the beginning of our stay in Nicaragua.  You can see there is a lot going on; all with a consistent vision of supporting “Healthcare for all, where no one dies of preventable diseases. Protect the most vulnerable.” The staff’s dedication to improving the health and well being of people impacted by the injustices of poverty is palpable.”

God’s plan is to constantly transform our human impossibilities into possibilities. As varying talents, skills, professions interface in a corner of God’s vineyard to fulfill His plan, many more connections for faith raising and kingdom building are made. Living the letter of Paul to the Corinthians is a witness in itself to God’s possibilities. (1 Corinthians 12:12-27)

If you feel God’s nudge to serve, use your skills and talents globally, please contact the Short-Term Mission Office at