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Author Archive for Craig Walter

CCC team ministers in Guatemala orphanage

From July 5-14 a team of 14 people from CCC ministered to around 35 children at an orphanage run by CCC missionaries Norman and Vickie Sutton. This is their story, as told by their team leader, Eva Rhoades.

“And God’s says, I’m gonna turn it into something different. I’m gonna turn it into something good. I’m gonna take all the broken pieces and make something beautiful like only I could. So put it all in the hands of the Father. Give it up, give it all over to the only one who can turn it into something beautiful, something really beautiful.” –Steven Curtis Chapman

IMG_0365Fourteen broken people. Who knew that this random group of people–young & old, rich & poor, new & longtime believers, would be such a vibrant, effective group?

God knew! God only asked us to go with servant hearts… and He would work out the rest. God called each of us on this very trip, and we were obedient. We went. We served. We loved. We played. We laughed. We cried. We learned. We saw God. We felt God. We heard God.

Our group joined CCC missionaries Norman & Vickie Sutton at the orphanage Hogar de Vida, in San Andres, Guatemala. One of our tasks was to put on a vacation Bible school for the younger kids at the Home. The focus for our time with them was on 5 parables Jesus told. All of the planning and preparation that went into the storytelling, the songs, the games, the snacks and the crafts was incredible! Our team did what was asked and God blessed it!

Another task we had was to help with some projects around the Home—most of us painted 5 of the rooms the kids share, while some painted roofs and others even welded. We certainly got our work projects completed, but even better than that, we had fun along the way with our mini-helpers! We would work, and then take a break to push someone on the tire swing, help make bracelets, or paint fingernails.

One morning, we had the opportunity to travel out to a more rural school. While there we were able to help clean and style their hair, play games and share the Gospel. We witnessed team members stepping up and out of their comfort zones to help in ways they didn’t feel comfortable with, but again in obedience of God’s call.

We were also able to spend an entire morning serving the children and staff of the Home by cooking brunch & lunch, and leading the staff in a devotional & craft. Most meals are made from scratch in Guatemala, so spending hours cooking and baking for 60 people was a feat none of us were equipped to do. However, we found much joy out of doing so! It was such a blessing to see the staff stop working, enjoy each other and have some fun.

Though we were expecting God to move, we may not have been expecting all that He had planned and carried out. Walls that had been put up around our hearts, in fear or protection, started to crumble. Hearts began to soften and open to the children of the Home, and to each other. Quiet times in connection with the Lord began to reveal many things. A newfound love for others and for serving began to flourish. A longing to be With God intensified. Lastly, we came away with a desire to bring all of our brokenness to God and have faith that He will use it to glorify and further His kingdom.

Please pray for:
*CCC missionaries Norman and Vickie Sutton.
*The children of Hogar de Vida.
*The people of Guatemala.
*Our team.

CCC helps build sustainable income for Malian Pastor

Just to give you a good understanding of how important a role CCC plays in Mali, let me share with you a recent story.

IMG_2909In 2014 CCC assisted missionaries Shawn & Becky McCabe with $10,000 to help them launch a new fish farm by the Niger river. They purposely put this farm  in a location that is a near a small village that has been closed to Christians or the gospel. Their prayer is that the fish farm can be used as a means to provide jobs for men in the village and much needed food for families. Their prayer is that this village will become open to the gospel.

After starting the farm Shawn hired 7 local Malian men who lived in this village to work at the farm. For their work they get to keep 75% of profits from the sell of the fish. He then invited them to attend a Saturday Bible study each week, and all 7 men are attending. Keep in mind, these are Muslim men who know nothing of Jesus and the Bible, and yet they are now attending a Bible study.

But the long-term solution is not for a missionary from America to mentor these men, so our denomination of churches in Mali sent a Pastor named Sofoni to live nearby and lead the Bible study. Sofoni is not only mentoring these men, he has also started a new church. However, this is a problem because Sofoni has a family so he needs an income to for them to live. This is where CCC comes in.

IMG_20150713_092952202_HDRCCC provided $3,000 to help Sofoni buy a new taxi, called a Moto-Taxi, that will hold up to 10 passengers. In Mali almost everyone gets around using either a small motorcycle called a Moto, they walk, or they take a taxi. This Moto-Taxi will allow Sofoni to work part-time and provide enough income for he and his family to continue their work in helping reach this village for Christ.

So the McCabes, the Malian church, and CCC have all come together in partnership to reach this small Malian village with the love and hope of Jesus Christ. What a beautiful thing!

 

Update from Dominican Republic

Here is the latest update from the Perrotto family and their ministry in the Dominican Republic.

family pic 1What’s happening in the DR?

In the past few updates, we told you that there were going to be some changes here within our mission team.  Up until a recent announcement, our assignment was still yet to be determined, but we remained confident that God has us here for a purpose.  Our former site leaders are moving out of the leadership of the Envision Mission and into a different branch of ministry.  Brandon and Bethany Nutter are now the site leaders and our role will be to work in support of them, and along the C&MA church in the DR to help them grow their ministry to reach more people with the Gospel.

Through these past few months, we learned more than ever what it means to wait on the Lord.  I can’t say it is easy, but I trust the He knows more about what we need than we do.  I am thankful for the people he has put in our lives during that time who encouraged us and walked alongside us.  I also want to thank all of you for your prayerful support and messages of encouragement.  We needed it these past few months more than ever.

Our upcoming schedule

We are in the preparation stages for hosting 19 short term mission teams in Santiago this summer.  These teams are coming from all over the U.S. and they will be helping the DR churches with projects that they would have a difficult time getting accomplished otherwise.  Through this process, the churches who come and serve will not only have a tremendous impact in the DR, but will return to serve in a new way in their home churches.  As for our responsibility, it will still be to facilitate the work that the teams do when they come, with a few more added responsibilities.

Please pray with us…

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your faithfulness, your kindness, your gentleness and your willingness to be involved with all the little details of our lives.  We praise and thank you for the plan that you have in mind for each one of us and how your grasp around us cannot be shaken.   Please bless all the missionaries here and around the world in the ways that only You know they need.  Please guide us as we prepare to host mission teams to do your work here in the DR.  We pray that your work will be accomplished in and through all who come here to serve. In Jesus’ name Amen.

Thank you all so much for your faithful support!

Matt, Teri, Alec, Marcus, Ellah, Madelyn and Isaac

Scott & Tami Wade need your support to reach children in Peru

Wades to PeruI’m excited to introduce Scott & Tami Wade to everyone at CCC. I’ve known the Wades for several years and they have been amazing volunteers helping with missions work overseas (in places like Mali and Peru) and locally in Omaha. In fact, Scott & Tami got engaged just four years ago on a short-term mission trip to Mali, so serving in Missions is just part of their marriage DNA.

It was a few years ago that they came to tell me that they are confident God has called them as a couple to serve as a light to the world somewhere overseas. For a while it was unclear just where this might be, until they went on a short-term trip through CCC to minister in Peru. This was a simple trip to build a bathhouse at a youth summer camp, but God had much bigger plans. It was here they learned that the missionaries who run the camp are close to retirement and in need of a new couple to come and take over their ministry. It was in that moment that God grabbed their heart for the children in Peru.

Here in Nebraska our camps (like Camp Rivercrest) can only run a few months out of the year. But in Peru, where the weather is pretty much always nice, the camps can run year round. So this camp has over 3,000 children and youth coming throughout the year, many of which do not yet know Jesus as their Savior. So its that simple – children in Peru need Jesus, they can find Jesus at this summer camp, and you can be a part of that right from the comfort of Omaha.

In 2014 the Wades applied with the mission organization SIM (and will work under CCC missionaries Dr. Allen & Amy George) and have been accepted for a long-term position in Peru. Now they are asking other Kingdom followers at CCC and beyond to join their team. They really need three things:

Like all of our missionaries, they need tons of prayer, and I don’t say that lightly. The forces of evil will be working hard to keep Scott & Tami from getting to Peru, and prayer is our most powerful weapon.

Like all of our missionaries, they need your friendship. Having a long-lasting relationships with people here at CCC that they know will pray for them and support them is vital. Once someone decides to go to the mission field they often end up on a relational island, which can be a lonely place.

And like all of our missionaries, they need your financial support. The wades need over $4,500 per month in consistent support and $70,000 up front to make this all happen. Those are daunting numbers for us but they are trivial to God.

You can stop by their booth in the Atrium on Sunday to meet them and start to build a relationship. You can give one-time or monthly through CCC by going to www.cccomaha.org/give. And you can contact the Wades directly to learn specifically how to pray for them and maybe even invite them to your small group at scott.wade@sim.org.

Craig Walter, Missions Pastor

Update from the Perrotto Family in the Dominican Republic

In April of 2014 CCC sent Matt and Teri Perrotto and their 5 children to minister in the Dominican Republic for the next two years.

The other day in Church, the first song we sang was “I Surrender All”. Truthfully, I had a hard time keeping it together. This song has a lot of meaning for me. It was in Spanish, as is every church event we attend, and contrary to many of the songs and words, I recognized this one right away. Before we left for the DR, we had a sendoff from Christ Community and during the service, we went in front of the congregation to share about the Mission we were about to embark on. During one of the services, I sang this song in Spanish. Today it hit me pretty hard at Church because God reminded me of what this Mission is all about.

To be honest, it has not been easy for our family. We have had many positive and amazing things happen, and we have made some great friendships. Along with all that, there has been some difficult times too. Sometimes it seems like it would be easier just to give up and go home. But the Lord reminded me today that although following Him is not always easy, it is what He calls us to do. When things don’t go well, it is easy to question if we heard God correctly. But we believe with all our heart that God called us here, and also that He knew that it was going to be difficult at times. I have learned to take comfort in that knowing that He is in control, and on a daily basis, I need to surrender all of it to Him…my joys and my worries.

Here is a link to the song I am talking about. It is a beautiful song.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULNH9svens0

Please pray with us… Lord, it is not always easy to surrender everything when we have difficulty staring us in the face. Help us to trust you through and praise you through it all, and to remember that you will never leave us or forsake us.

Thank You for your partnership in prayer, Matt, Teri, Alec, Marcus, Ellah, Madelyn and Isaac

Double-Match your donation to Compass Ministries

boys1This Wednesday, May 21st, is the 2nd annual OmahaGives24 campaign here in Omaha. This is a citywide opportunity to make donations to your favorite charity and have part of your donation matched by funds from the Omaha Community Foundation.

There are many local charities that CCC loves who are participating but I want to make you aware of a DOUBLE-MATCH opportunity if you give to Compass Ministries. Compass is the after-school program in the Village One neighborhoods of North Omaha that CCC has partnered with for the last 23 years. Please remember that CCC does not provide any direct funding to Compass, we simply ask our people to generously support Compass through finances and volunteer opportunities.

Ok, here is the COMPASS DOUBLE-MATCH opportunity. Compass has a donor who will match donations given to Compass for up to $7,500. That’s right, if you give $25 then this donor will match that $25 at the end of the day. The reason this is a DOUBLE-MATCH is because then part of that $50 (your $25 plus the $25 match) will then get matched by the Omaha Community Foundation. Wow, what a great opportunity!

How do you give? Go to www.OmahaGives24.org and just follow the directions, its very simple. Giving starts at Midnight on Tuesday evening and ends at Midnight on Wednesday evening.

If you would like to know the exact details of how all this works, go to FAQ page on the OmahaGives24 website.

 

CCC Missions Update: Perrotto’s, Opportunity to Serve, and More

Here is a quick update on a few important things happening in missions and some ways you can serve our International Workers.

Perrotto’s to the Dominican Republic

Perrotto Family v2

In March we asked the people of CCC to step up and provide gifts for Matt & Teri Perrotto and their 5 children as they go to minister in the Dominican Republic for the next two years. Praise God, 100% of their financial needs have come in through one-time gifts and monthly commitments. Thank you CCC for your investment in reaching lost people in far away places!

The Perrotto’s landed in the DR on April 14th and are spending the first two weeks getting settled before their first intense ministry run begins. From early May through the end of August they will be very busy as they help host over 600 visitors from US churches.

Lisa Needs Your Help

Lisa Reynolds small

 

Lisa is a CCC international worker in India and she will be home this summer from June 16 through the end of August. She needs two things: (1) a place to stay and (2) a car to drive. If you are interested in helping with either of these things please contact Craig Walter at craigw@cccomaha.org / (402) 938-1536.

 

Pray for Health

We have two international workers who are struggling with health issues. Neither can be named at this time but God knows their need. Please pray on their behalf for healing, for peace, for their families, and for God’s will to be done in their lives.

Matt & Teri Perrotto … chasing God’s dream!

On January 13th, 2013, I received one of those emails that brightens my day. It was from Teri Perrotto, whom I had met but did not really know, and she said, “My husband and I have been thinking and praying about a family mission commitment.” Ok, pretty cool, I’m thinking they want to go on a short-term mission trip together.

Perrotto Family v2We met the following week and this was the first time I had ever met Matt. I learned that Matt was a successful chemical engineer, they have 5 kids, they play in an adult soccer league, Teri home schools their children … basically they are an all-American family. This is what its all about, right? They have it all – money, love, family, good health, a little God in their life. This is the American dream – this is what we are supposed to be chasing, right?

So my question for them … why would you want to give this all up to go do missions for a couple of years?

The answer was holy discontent. Oh, they didn’t use those words, but in Teri’s first email she said, “This is something that keeps coming up for both of us and we think if we have more information, God will make it clear to us.” Did you catch that? God was stirring in both Matt and Teri at the same time, they couldn’t get this out of their hearts and minds, he would not leave them alone. They couldn’t even identify exactly what God wanted or why, but they knew God wanted them to quit chasing the America dream and go serve him. God was replacing the American dream in their hearts with his dream.

Matt and Teri are not alone in this, as we have lots of people from CCC who have made a huge sacrifice to chase after God’s dream for the lives. Some have gone oversees, some do it right here in Omaha.

This all reminds me of one simple truth that I am still learning myself. God has a dream for our lives and it is not the same as the American dream. Which dream are you chasing?

Matt and Teri are moving from Omaha on April 14th with their 5 kids to serve for the next two years at a Christian & Missionary Alliance mission field in the Dominican Republic. Matt quit is job, they have sold their possessions, leaving close family and dear friends. Please pray for them as they embark on this new God-sized adventure.

Jenna Hager update from Zambia

Jenna Hager, and 18-year old from CCC, recently decided to forgo her first year of college to serve in missions overseas. She served the last fall in Guatemala for 2 months at an orphanage, and now she is in Zambia for 4 months serving at New Day Orphanage. Here is an update from Jenna.

IMG_0500My Zambian adventure has started off well. Living here seems so much like living in the United States, with the exception of the busy bustling of life, and that the Zambian lifestyle is how we as humans and Christians are called to live (in my opinion any ways). We work hard, have rest, enjoy fellowship, take time to talk to others and help a brother out, and are welcoming of others. The sun reminds me of the work to be done, the breezes the relief we can feel. Since it is the rainy season, rains come down and bring everything back to life. It is beautiful to see it rain here.

A great story. The other day, 5 of us set out to shop in a neighbor town called Choma, roughly 45 minutes away. We got there, and mid way through the afternoon, it started to downpour rain. We were informed that the bridge roughly 10 minutes away from the orphanage, that we had to cross to get home, was flooded and un passable. We left Choma, hoping by the time we got there it would have gone down. 13 hours later, after pulling one of our guys out of the mud, a rough nights sleep in the truck, an attempt and semi success of making a fire, and getting to talk with some others stuck by the river, we decided to go the back way, and though tricky, made it out safely. A trip that was only supposed to take maybe 6 hours, lasted 23 hours. It was a great time.

IMG_0561Teaching is going well. I teach Kindergarten Bible, Pre-K through 4th grade Music and Theater and kids morning devotion twice a week. While many of the kids here are believers, it is still good to fill them and talk with them on Christ, so I take every opportunity to do such. They amaze me with how much knowledge they have of the bible, the stories if has and the people of the stories. It encourages me to know that little ones do love to hear about their heavenly father, even in a world today of such brokenness and despair. Yes, there is much brokenness here, but God know’s what the situations are and know’s what each person needs, just like anywhere else. He is an awesome God.

My biggest prayer request would be for my health right now. Outwardly I am very healthy, but inwardly with my bad back, joints, knees and neck, I am not doing well. The pain is increasing and weighing heavily on me.
Prayer that either God would take this pain from me, or give me the strength to continue through it. His will be done through it all and not my own.

Thank you so much for the prayers and support you have given me.

God Bless,
Jenna

CCC team opens the door for Jesus in Mali

Earlier this month a team of 5 people from CCC were sent to Mali for a very specific purpose – use medical care for large animals to open the door for Jesus in local villages.

IMG_20140122_232Dr. Jerry Busselman (a veterinarian), Jamie Sell, Melissa Head, Brad Dunbar, and Randy Raether, spent about a week in multiple village in Mali providing much needed inoculations for over 3,400 cattle and hundreds more goats and sheep. As you can see from this picture, most animals in Mali have parasites which keep them from growing healthy. The medicine our team provided will allow these cattle to become healthy within a matter of weeks and therefore be more valuable to local farmers.

The beauty though from the hard work this team put in is the new open doors for Jesus.  They worked side by side with one of the local Pastors, visiting remote villages that have not been open to receiving the gospel but are eager to receive the vet team and the inoculations they bring. While the team was working hard the pastor was making connections with the village chiefs and planning to return with his team in a month to share the gospel. In all, our CCC team was able to visit 5 new villages that the pastors have not been able to previously visit.

IMG_20140122_60

 

Not only were the native people impacted by the trip but the men and women from CCC that stepped out in faith to do this work were also greatly impacted. As one of the team members said, “This has been a life changing experience for me. To travel to a far away country that is so poor, and use something as simple as medicine for animals to bring the good news of Jesus to these people, how can this not be life changing?”

This is the 3rd time CCC has sent a team like this to Mali and it is an exciting opportunity to reach Malians with the gospel. As these local Pastors build relationships with village leaders, they gain credibility and they are given the right to then share the gospel with hundreds of Malians. In this 90% Muslim country this has been one of the most creative and effective ways to show the love of Jesus and share the gospel.

IMG_20140122_333Mali 2014 085