International Ministries

It’s Not Too Late to Go on a Mission Trip to Nicaragua!

June 12, 2012 Journal
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Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

It’s not too late!  You can take the first step to building a long-term connection with missions around the world!  This spring, First Baptist Church in Riverside, California, celebrated the 10-year anniversary of their sister-church relationship with Primera Iglesia Bautista in Bluefields, Nicaragua.  Over the years, we have come alongside in many ministry efforts, including helping with children’s festivals and teen events, and building a new church building.  In fact, we are currently helping to complete the new church/school building in Rama.  More significant than anything is the powerful quality of relationships.  When we get to watch our family in Nicaragua grow in the Lord, and we get to share with them how God is growing us, the focus is on the Lord and praise abounds!

Our story began in 2002 with our children’s pastor, who obeyed the stirring of the Holy Spirit calling her to explore something new in the world of missions.  Her search settled on Nicaragua with Vital and Ketly Pierre, and she set out with the support of the senior pastor and the church body to discover what God wanted to show her.  She returned with the recommendation that we establish a sister-church relationship with the church in Bluefields, and we have continued to follow the Lord to Nicaragua nearly every year since then.

Our first group, made of six people and led by our children’s pastor, traveled to Bluefields in August of 2003.  It was a maiden-voyage for five of us; the impact was so strong that we simply knew we would return.  Shortly after returning home, the conversation about going again began, and the next group nearly doubled in size.  Over the years the groups have ranged in size from six to twenty!  Every person who has made the trip has a personal story to tell about how God loves and leads!

The important thing seems to be obedience.  God already has things worked out.  Just get in motion with prayer before, during and after every effort.  God will clearly reveal the way…including who should go and serve, what they should do and learn, how they should share and encourage.  The advantages are greater than you can imagine.  Faith will grow. Talents will surface. Love will prevail.  We have even seen the effectiveness of children on the mission team because of the important language of play. We have seen the effectiveness of teachers on the mission team because of the intense desire of Nicaraguan teachers to be better at their craft.  Skilled tradesmen and skilled homemakers all have a place on the team to serve and share.  Artists have a place on the team because creative expression is in all people.   Willingness is far more significant than any skill you may presuppose to be important.  God really will direct a willing heart.

It really isn’t too late.  Start praying and investigating.  If God is leading you to Nicaragua, contact the Pierre’s right away, and start a conversation about how God may be leading you.  Contact Ketly and Vital about being a Nicaragua mission team member.   If you can’t travel there right away, perhaps you can partner in helping to provide supplies for their new church/school in Rama, although their preference is to work with anyone who can come alongside.  God is so good!  I’m excited for you to discover something new about His goodness by getting into missions.  God bless you as you step out in obedience to His call.

In Christ’s Service,
Karen Dutcher
FBC/Riverside Nicaragua Mission Trip Member

To see the Pierre’s MPT website, go to --