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F A L L 2 0 12

A Publication of Maranatha Volunteers International


S U M M E R F A M I LY P R O J E C T P 3

U LT I M AT E W O R KO U T 2 2 P 6

O N E - D AY C H U R C H P 9

Nick Vera Cruz

Grace and Kai Lloyd

Mark, Roxanne and Marjani August

Julissa Flores

Johanna and J.P. Viteri

Rolf Maier

FINDING FAMILY On the Summer Family Project BY JULIE Z. LEE

Johanna Viteri’s son, J.P., had just graduated from high school, and within a matter of months he would be going to college. The thought of him leaving home gave Johanna pause. “I thought before he goes out into the world—and you know, sometimes when the kids leave for college, they never come back home—I wanted to have this experience with him,” says Johanna. So she signed them both up for the Maranatha Volunteers International Summer Family Project—much to J.P.’s chagrin. “I really love home. I love my friends and my home and my state, and so I really didn’t want to come at first,” says J.P. Despite her son’s apprehension, Johanna was determined to share an unforgettable experience with J.P., and in June, the two packed their bags and headed to Nicaragua. Over the next two weeks, the Viteris worked with families from all over the world to build an Education and Evangelism Center, a large block school, in Nueva Guinea. Every volunteer found a way to be needed. More important, they found a way to belong.

“I called the Maranatha office and asked if I could go on a mission trip. And they told me that there was one coming up in June. It was a family mission trip [to Mexico],” says Nick. Two months later, Nick was on a plane. “When I first went to Mexico, I was still kind of down but excited about this trip,” remembers Nick. “And [when] I left Mexico—that experience had changed me, had done a great thing for my spiritual and my emotional feelings. And so ever since then, I’ve been so involved with Maranatha… This is my fifth one, and every one of them is different. They were just wonderful, wonderful experiences.” The August family is following in Nick’s footsteps as they plan on returning to the mission field also. Roxanne August and her husband signed up for this year’s project to give their daughter, Marjani, an opportunity to serve.

“She’s only six years old, but there’s a lot of research that shows that a person is formed between birth and the age of seven. And if we can get our children to understand what it is to give of themselves when they’re very young, then there’s a good chance that when they become adults, they will actually want to be giving and caring about the community around them,” says Roxanne. “By God’s grace I want to come back on a yearly basis. I want it to be part of my child’s [life].” As for Johanna and J.P., it’s too soon to tell whether mission trips will become a mother-son tradition. But one thing is for certain: a single project was all that was needed to change their relationship. “Out here [in the mission field] it’s just simple,” says J.P. “You really have to communicate more with people, face to face… It has encouraged me to talk to my mom more, and we’ve actually strengthened our relationship already.” Johanna agrees. “We have really bonded. In the mornings, we have worship together, even before the worship that we do as a group, and we’ve been able to share some things of why we’re here, our feelings. And I think this has really made us stronger as a mom and son.” Photos by Tom Lloyd

For Nick Vera Cruz, belonging was his reason for participating on the trip. Two years ago, Vera Cruz’s beloved wife passed away, and the pain from the loss was unwavering. Determined to break the sadness, he made a phone call that would change his life.

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The Miracle of missions

Photo by Christina Lloyd

B Y A drienne weiss

When I go on a mission trip, miracles happen. They happen within me, they happen for the people in the countries we visit, and they happen to my friends on the trip. This last June, my family and I joined the Maranatha Summer Family Project to Nueva Guinea, Nicaragua. I was 14 years old, and this was my fourth mission trip and fifth trip to the mission field. I was familiar with the ins and outs of travel, and I had many friends who were coming on this trip too. But this trip was different than the others: on this trip I was going to be baptized. I spent a long time leading up to the decision to be baptized. I thought my life was perfect. I live in the United States. I’m home‑schooled by a wonderful 4 | THE V OL U NT EER FA LL 2012

mom, have goofy nine-year-old twin brothers, and my Dad works for Maranatha. I have fantastic friends, food, clothes, and a house. I found it hard to fit God into my already full life. With everything I have, why would I need God? In 2010, I went to Cuba on a trip with my dad that shifted my perspective. I saw people who didn’t have everything they needed. I saw a lack of freedom. The idea of not having what I took for granted baffled me. I cried after leaving Cuba. How could we be so rich and others so poor? What would happen if I didn’t have

Photo by Tom Lloyd

freedom? What would I do? Who would I turn to? Soon after, my family went to Africa, where I saw more poverty than ever before. I realized that if all of my stuff disappeared, what I would need most is God. Then this last spring, my mom and I visited a friend with cancer on the day before she died. She was in bed hooked up to an oxygen machine, and she couldn’t talk or open her eyes. When I got home, I sobbed. How could God watch something this awful? I didn’t know what to think or who to blame. I felt

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bad for the angels in heaven who watch this every day. I realized that although our world is an experiment of sin, and people die, there is no way someone as loving as God could watch that happen and do nothing. So God sent Jesus, and if we have committed to accept God’s offer of eternal life, we don’t have to fear death. That was the moment I decided to get baptized. I wanted to make the commitment to God—that yes, I accept His offer for eternal life, and yes, I want Him to be with me every moment of the day. But also, I want to share Him with as many people as possible. I want them to have Him as a friend, as I do. In 2012, my family made plans to go to Nicaragua for the Family Project. My grandparents decided to come too, and I thought, “My grandfather is a pastor and he’s coming on the same trip as a bunch of my friends. Plus, what cooler place to be baptized than on a mission trip?” It might seem strange that I wanted to be baptized surrounded by a group of people—many of whom I’d only known for a week—in a hotel swimming pool. But I’ve gone on many mission trips, and I always feel closer to both God and the people with me when I’m on the trip. We bonded when together we dealt with cold water or no water, competitive block laying for the school, and no air-conditioning. When you pull yourself out of your comfort zone and jump headfirst into physical, emotional, and spiritual adventure, you realize that everyone else on the trip has done the same thing.

These amazing experiences change people in miraculous ways. Take us, the teenage girls on the trip. When we arrived in Nueva Guinea we weren’t excited about our accommodations, which we nicknamed the “green monster” because of its neon, green exterior. I heard the words “disgusting,” “gross,” and “filthy” come out of most of our mouths. By the end of the third day at the “green monster,” we all appreciated any type of food that showed up in the serving cooler, and I stopped hearing complaints about cold water. By the end of the week, when we headed back to a nice hotel in Managua, we all screamed with delight at air conditioning, pools, reliable running water, and not having to do our dishes in bleach water. But miracles were happening even before the volunteers got to Nicaragua. This past year, the Adventists in Nueva Guinea held prayer meetings at their church every morning at five. They prayed for a school, and their prayers were finally answered. They got the land they needed, they got the money they needed, they got the permission they needed from authorities, and they got the volunteers.

The last Sabbath of our mission trip, I was baptized, and it was one of the best days of my life. It was sunny and beautiful. The pool was blue and crystal clear. A hundred friendly and supportive people were sitting around the edges. My grandfather baptized me, and I felt as if the sun were a smile coming from God. Adrienne Weiss is a 14-year old volunteer from Davis, California. Read more about the Summer Family Project on page 3 and learn how you can join the Christmas Family Project this December by checking out the Project Calendar on pages 10-11.

Another miracle happened in the neighboring town of Los

Photo by Tom Lloyd

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Angeles, a thirty-minute drive from Nueva Guinea. A group of volunteers met with a congregation who worshipped in a small dark house filled with bats. This wasn’t a source of pride for the members and many left. Our group had the opportunity to build a One-Day Church for this congregation and to see their hope for the future through the smiles on their faces.

Photo by Brenda Weiss

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The Ultimate Workout 22: Leaving the familiar. Stepping into the unknown. Growing in God. BY CARRIE PURKEYPILE

All kinds of teenagers ventured out this summer for a life-changing service adventure in the wilds of Nicaragua. Each came with an “identity,” such as a skilled basketball player, quiet student, big brother, country kid, or citizen of the urban jungle. All those and more were represented on a project that managed to take every one of them out of their “norm” and into a new chance at life. Once they arrived, none of those old categories held any power. “I was completely put out of my comfort zone. The living experience was different than I’m used to, but I loved living simply,” says 15-year-old Rachel Brauer. By “simply” the teens are referring to the very basic lifestyle of rural Nicaragua found on the 22nd annual Ultimate Workout (UW), a project for teens, ages 14 to 18. The 133 participants on this year’s project were divided into four groups and traveled to remote corners of the country, where paved roads and refrigeration were only dreams for the future. “All the food and drinks were warm. Nothing was cold. I was surprised that they didn’t have the basic things that we have [in the United States],” says 16-year-old Jack Jimenez.

On some sites conditions were so rough that if the UW had not taken them on, no churches would have been built. One group traveled for 20 hours in a school bus to reach their destination. But this kind of challenge is typical for the UW. It is an experience that transports volunteers into a new environment, maybe more than any other Maranatha project. Each volunteer is part of a group that starts as complete strangers and eventually grows into family. The humble facilities and far-off locations add to the feeling of a new start. There are no cell phones or Facebook, no history, no preconceived ideas of who you are or who you could be. This space allows young people to

look at God and themselves in a way they may never have before. The project has inspired 16-year‑old Chloe Curtis to make a change in her future. She now hopes to take a year off school to dedicate to missions. When she talks about what makes UW so ultimate, she says, “I first think of the living conditions, or the food. But it is not just the physical, but the spiritual. “I think people’s worldviews are being broadened. They are stepping out of their world … We (are) living in a mission mindset. As you are building churches and teaching kids about Jesus, that is on your mind all the time – Christ. So it is impossible not to grow spiritually.”

UW 22 Project Scope Remote areas in Northeastern Nicaragua hosted 133 teen volunteers and staff on the 22nd annual Ultimate Workout. Four smaller groups split to serve distinct areas. Some hopped puddle-jumper flights to the Mosquito Coast, while others braved (very) long, bumpy, muddy bus rides to the interior. Each group built several One-Day Church structures, while also serving the communities they visited in nearly every imaginable way. Trash collection, food distribution, games, medical care, painting, teaching— nothing was too little or too much for the eager volunteers to take on. Between the four groups they built 16 One-Day Churches. Because of their extreme locations, some of those buildings might never have been erected if the adventurous young workers hadn’t taken on the challenge.

Photos by Leonel Macias

Offering a spiritually transforming experience for the participants is one of the top goals of UW. Each group spends a lot of time in worship, service and prayer. For many teens the unique combination of circumstances creates a space where they can experience God in a way they never have before. “There was a lot of sharing time,” says Chloe of her experience in Matagalpa. “We talked about difficult times. A lot of people opened up and shared about things they had never shared before. I think that was good for everybody. You could tell a difference in people from the beginning to the end of the trip.”

For some the difference post-UW is tangible. For others it’s something abstract or unexplainable. After 22 years, the Ultimate Workout continues to make a real footprint on the lives of young people, for now, and in some cases, for eternity.

Maranatha’s annual Jump Start weekend for teens is January 18-20, 2013 in Temple City, California. All teens are invited to join this focus on God, mission, friends, and service. Write to us at uw@maranatha.org to request more information.

For all the physical progress markers of success, the most dramatic impact sprang from the small details and interactions. For some it was encountering unexpected generosity in the people they came to serve. For 16-year-old Jack Jimenez, it was in a song service under the starry sky. “It was only our voices and the guitar. Something about that moment was special.”

Photo by Margarito Trujillo



Bob McNaughton, a volunteer from Clarkston, Washington has a theory about showing people Christ’s love. “You have to meet their felt needs first,” he says. It makes sense. If they are hungry or sick, what they really need is food and medical care. Once immediate needs are met, it opens the door to offering them something deeper. While working on the Nicaragua Open Team Project at the Chinandega Adventist School in Nicaragua, Bob noticed a young man leaning on his bicycle outside the worksite. Four hours later he was still there. The young man’s name was Fransisco. Though Bob wouldn’t learn it until much later, Fransisco’s wife had thrown him out of the house weeks before, insisting that he stop drinking and get a job before coming back home. He had stopped the alcohol but was still praying for a job when he saw the Chinandega campus fill with dozens of foreign workers. Bob felt a prompting to speak to him, and not knowing his history, he offered Fransisco an opportunity. “Show up here at 8

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a.m. tomorrow, and we’ll give you a job,” Bob said to Franscisco. The next morning, Fransisco was not late. Bob quietly watched him work for three days and noted his dedication. “He never asked for anything, and though he didn’t speak any English, he always seemed to know what I needed him to do,” remembers Bob. After spending the lunch hour with Fransisco, a bilingual pastor in the group told Bob that Fransisco “is starving to know God.” They invited him to an evangelistic meeting that they were holding ten miles from Fransisco’s house. He arrived on a bike, and the next day, he made the 20-mile round trip again. On the third day, Fransisco mentioned that his wife and two children would like to attend too, and Bob arranged for a taxi to bring them. The volunteers fell in love with the family, as the family fell in love

Photo by David Brillhart

with God. Volunteers from the Nicaragua Open Team made a commitment to send his five-year old daughter, Sofia, to school— not only for this year, but until she graduates from the 12th grade. “That little girl is now being raised as an Adventist. She will learn to speak English, and she will have no problem getting a job in Nicaragua with that education! The father was an alcoholic and told me that he had no hope in his life. Now, he has hope!” smiles Bob. Jobs, schools, churches—these are the felt needs of communities around the world. “They certainly had the need!” says Bob. “They didn’t have room. The kids were just jammed in there. With the new campus so many more will have the opportunity for an education that will change their lives.” Meeting felt needs, and lots of them, is what the One-Day School program does best.

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Photo by Brenda Duerksen



Carlos Vascones lives in Baños de Agua Santa, a small city in the Andean highlands of Ecuador. About fourteen years ago, Carlos was baptized into his local Seventh‑day Adventist Church at the age of 15. Shortly after, he joined his father and other church members in carrying the Gospel to El Triunfo, a village located deep in the jungle. This was no easy church plant. At the time, there were no roads leading to the mountain settlement. Missionaries from the Baños Church had to walk five hours to El Triunfo every Sabbath, trekking through thick foliage, clambering over rocks, and crossing the raging rivers by way of fallen trees. Each Sabbath two members volunteered to make this memorable journey, arriving damp and muddy, but totally committed to sharing God’s love with the isolated community. A typical Sabbath began with the Baños members greeting people who streamed in from the few‑and‑far-between homesteads. Then they held a service of teaching, praise, and worship in the tiny log church they had built there. Many in El Triunfo were shocked

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that people from Baños would make the long journey, week after week for years, just to tell them about Jesus. But for Carlos and his fellow church members, there was no other choice. “We couldn’t just leave them abandoned up here,” says Carlos. “The best pay is to see that someone accepts the Lord as their Savior.” In 2011, Maranatha crews built a One-Day Church structure in the village of El Triunfo. The small community could hardly believe the spacious, sturdy structure provided to them. They joined in preparing the site,

pouring a solid floor and raising solid, red brick walls. “Now when it rains, we stay dry and warm in here!” says Carlos. Love of the Lord transformed this village, and now The One-Day Church has revolutionized it again.

Photo by Tom Lloyd

For years, the El Triunfo congregation met in this tiny shack that had barely enough room to stand up straight. They embraced their One-Day Church immediately, and they now have a secure, warm, and dry place to meet in the mountains of Ecuador.

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Curaรงao Open Team

Christmas Family Project

Willemstad, Curaรงao LEADER: Merrill Zachary

Nueva Guinea, Nicaragua

Nov. 28 - Dec. 10, 2012

LEADERS: Kyle Fiess & Vickie Wiedmann

Dec. 19, 2012 - Jan. 1, 2013

Thunderbird Adventist Academy Open Team Phoenix, Arizona Leaders: Ken Carr & Ken Casper

Jan. 7 - Feb. 14, 2013

Volunteer Opportunities Are you ready to get out there and volunteer?

Falakata Open Team 2

Ghana Open Team

Ecuador Open Team 2

West Bengal, India

Valley View Adventist University, Ghana

Ambato, Ecuador

LEADER: Vickie Wiedmann

Mar. 28 - Apr. 7, 2013

LEADER: Karen Godfrey

March 12 - 24, 2013

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March 20 - 31, 2013

LEADER: David Lopez

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BĂŠrĂŠ Adventist Hospital Open Team Southwestern Chad LEADER: George Alder

January 15 - 29, 2013

Falakata Open Team 1

Ecuador Open Team 1

West Bengal, India

Ambato, Ecuador

LEADERs: Claudio Japas & Luther Findley

LEADER: Merrill Zachary

January 16 - 27, 2013

February 7 - 18, 2013

Maranatha has opportunities for volunteers of all kinds to get involved in service around the world. What project looks most inviting to you? Whether you are heading off on your own to join up with a group of soon-to-be-friends or taking your family along for the ride, we are happy to help you find the right project to join. Visit our online Project Calendar at maranatha.org for the most up-to-date listing of projects. Then contact us by emailing volunteer@maranatha.org or call (916) 774-7700 to receive more information.

Kariba Open Team

Summer Family Project

Malamulo Roofing Open Team

LEADER: To Be Determined

Santiago, Panama

Malamulo, Malawi

April 2013

LEADER: Steve Case

LEADER: Jason Blanchard

June 20 - 30, 2013

July 2013

Kariba, Zimbabwe

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Group Projects

Birmingham Alabama First Adventist Church

July – September 2012

B y C arrie P urkeypile

Verde Valley Seventh-Day Adventist Church (Arizona)


Birmingham First Seventh-Day Adventist Church (Alabama) Dallas Christian Academy (Texas)

India Grasshopper Ministries (Florida) The Place Adventist Fellowship (California)


The Birmingham First Seventh-day Adventist Church was inspired to adventurous service after they hosted a special Maranatha Sabbath with guest speaker Dick Duerksen. The Birmingham congregation in Alabama recruited 16 volunteers who worked with Maranatha to plan a project at Colegio Educativo Adventista (CEA) in Honduras. As the date neared four more volunteers from outside the congregation joined the group. “The Lord worked it out the way He wanted it to be,” says project coordinator Ben Bingham. “There is not a person that went that doesn’t want to go back! All of us came back changed.” Back home, church members were following the activities of the mission project through daily blog and Facebook posts. Luke and Rose Rogers were in charge of gathering and disseminating information from the construction site. They took lots of photos and even video. “It was nice to come 12 | T H E V OL U NTEER FA LL 2012

back to church the first week and feel like people could already talk to us about our experience. It was a really good thing,” says Rose. Still, telling a story doesn’t fully communicate the deep impact on participants. “I learned appreciation for James 1:21-27,” says Ben. “‘Be you doers of the Word and not hearers only.’ A person goes on a mission trip and can come back with pictures and stories, but no one will ever be able to understand what happens in a person’s heart.” The group put up classrooms and a computer building on the CEA campus. They also held an evangelism campaign, grew a children’s ministry, visited local orphanages, and sponsored and built the Cofradía One-Day Church. “The people who went were really affected, and the people at home were really interested too,” says Rose. Though they are still unpacking from the busy trip, “Several have already said they want to go the next time around!”

Orchard Park Seventh-Day Adventist Church (Georgia) Prince George Seventh-Day Adventist Church (British Columbia)

Nicaragua West Houston Seventh-Day Adventist Church (Texas)

Thank you for serving! How do I Prepare to Take my Group on a Project? 1. First determine if you have enough interest to bring at least 15-20 volunteers. 2. Call Maranatha at (916) 774-7700 and speak to our Coordinator for Group Projects about getting started. 3. Begin recruiting participants and leadership. 4. Work with Maranatha to set a budget. 5. Pray

For more information call us at (916) 774-7700 or email groups@maranatha.org.

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Photo Photoopposite oppositepage pageby byTom DickLloyd Duerksen

Photo by Luke Rogers

Prayer, Three Times Daily Buhne Ndethi is a second grade teacher and administrator at the Victoria Falls School in Zimbabwe. She loves her job and says she feels honored to be teaching children everything they need to know— particularly about God. She begins her class with prayer each morning. Then at 10 a.m., there is a break during which they also have prayer. Then at noon, before the children go home, they pray once more in thanks to God.


Singbeil Retires from Maranatha Canada Nearly 17 years ago, Anna Singbeil single‑handedly made it possible to expand Maranatha’s presence in Canada. Working as a volunteer, Anna Singbeil managed all Canadian donations and receipts. Shawnda McCaleb, director of donor administration for Maranatha, remembers when the organization was unable to provide tax‑deductible receipts for donors or volunteers from Canada. “I don’t know how we would have been able to get established in Canada without having someone as a physical presence in the country,” says Shawnda. “She has really been a lifesaver for us!” Prior to managing donations in Canada, Anna and her husband Clarence volunteered on Maranatha projects all over the world for many years and were on Maranatha’s Canadian Association Board. They loved serving in places like Brazil, Guatemala, India, and Panama. It was on a trip to Panama that Anna remembers Maranatha asking her to take on the critical post. “I said, ‘Sure!’” smiles Anna. Anna has done great work for nearly two decades, and the results are incredible. Maranatha membership in Canada has increased 98% since 1991, and there has been a 921% increase

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New Albany Spanish Church Dedicated After nine years of meeting in borrowed or rented rooms, the New Albany Spanish Church in Mississippi finally dedicated a new home of their own on August 11, 2012. The Sabbath morning program welcomed more than 120 people, including Maranatha volunteers and friends from the nearby Decatur Adventist Church.

in donations from Canada. It is a testament to the power of one volunteer! Anna is now “retiring” from her post. Many volunteers will miss her friendly response to their calls and letters. “I want her to always know that we love her and will miss her in the role,” says Shawnda. “What is really cool in Maranatha is that the staff and the volunteers become your friends.”

The church was constructed earlier this summer by Maranatha volunteers and New Albany members. The structure has a sanctuary, offices, small classrooms, and a kitchen. This building is a pilot project for Maranatha’s effort to build churches for small congregations in North America. In October, a similar Maranatha church was constructed for the Decatur Adventist congregation in Alabama.

Due to this change, all Canadian funds should be sent to this new address: Maranatha Volunteers International Association c/o V06494C PO Box 6494, Station Terminal Vancouver, BC V6B 6R3 For questions call the Maranatha Volunteers International headquarters at (916) 774-7700 and ask to speak with Shawnda McCaleb.

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Young Adults Go Creative with Outreach Vocal talent was not a requirement to participate on the Young Adult project, but the very first worship in Nicaragua revealed that almost all of the 54 volunteers could sing. “One of the first things we discovered was that just about everyone on the project could sing harmony. During worships, we found we were like a choir,” says Claudio Japas, leading his seventh Young Adult project. The unexpected group talent sparked an idea to do a flash mob in Nueva Guinea, the town where the volunteers were laying block for an Education and Evangelism Center (EEC). A flash mob is when a group of people assembles in a public place and unexpectedly performs a coordinated act, such as a dance or song. The trend has been wildly popular and perpetuated by social media. But whereas most flash mobs are solely for the purpose of random entertainment, the Young Adult volunteers came with an objective to share the Gospel. “The group stood around a marketplace in town, and they pretended to be shopping. Then on cue, they would start singing the same song,” says Claudio. “Once they got everyone’s attention they would pass out Glow tracks or other literature. Then the volunteers would move on and go to another site in town and do the same thing a couple of times.” Outreach wasn’t limited to music. Spiritual leader Christian Martin created multiple opportunities

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for volunteers to engage with the local community. One afternoon, the volunteers helped the local trash man pick up litter at the central plaza. Another time, the volunteers washed windows at the mayor’s office. In addition to the more unusual outreach activities, volunteers also coordinated more traditional offerings, such as a weeklong Vacation Bible School and three nights of evangelism meetings. The Young Adults also completed their portion of the EEC ahead of schedule and built a One-Day Church that will be used as a Sabbath School annex building for an existing Seventh-day Adventist Church in Nueva Guinea. The Young Adult project is designed for volunteers ages 18-35. Initially created as a way to continue engaging Ultimate Workout alumni, the project fills an important gap between those years when people have just graduated from college or are entering the workforce but haven’t yet settled into a career or family. “Young adults can have a difficult time finding the right spiritual community because they are in a transition period between school, career, and family,” says David Lopez, director of volunteer projects at Maranatha. “This project helps connect young people who are searching for spiritual growth and belonging.”

About Maranatha Maranatha spreads the Gospel throughout the world as it builds people through the construction of urgently needed buildings. All notices of change of address should be sent to the Maranatha Volunteers International United States address. Julie Z. Lee, Editor jlee@maranatha.org Carrie Purkeypile, Managing Editor cpurkeypile@maranatha.org Heather Bergren, Designer hbergren@maranatha.org United States Headquarters: Maranatha Volunteers International 990 Reserve Drive, Suite 100 Roseville, CA 95678 Phone: 916-774-7700 Fax: 916-774-7701 Website: maranatha.org In Canada: Maranatha Volunteers International Association c/o V06494C PO Box 6494, Station Terminal Vancouver, BC V6B 6R3 CANADA

Non-Profit U.S. Postage


Roseville, CA Permit No. 111 990 Reserve Drive, Suite 100 Roseville, CA 95678

If You Give Them a School… BY DICK DUERKSEN

Photo by Dick Duerksen

Maranatha has agreed to build schools and then some churches, in Ghana. Why schools first? Ghana is a land of children—kids who are eager to learn, play, and make eternal friends. They’re everywhere and ready to go to school! Our Sabbath journey included visiting a small Adventist church. We arrived in time for Sabbath School and were awed by the careful preparation that each of the Sabbath School teachers had made for that Sabbath’s lesson. Inside the building each teacher had a quarterly, a Bible, and additional aids nearby as they led a spirited discussion in their class. The outdoor teachers seemed

even more prepared, although the outdoor challenges may have made it seem that way. Trucks and taxis roared by on the road, filling the air with their roars and fumes. Birds waged territorial battles in the trees, and neighborhood visitors watched from behind almost every bush. The kids listened, sang lustily, and recited the Bible memory verse they had learned during the week, all the while waving toward the watching neighbor kids, inviting them to join. “If you give me a church,” one pastor said, “we will fill it over time. If you give me a school, we will fill it – and the church – right away.”

Cover Photo taken by Dick Duerksen on the Nicaragua Open Team project in Nicaragua.

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The Volunteer Fall 2012  

The Volunteer is the official publication of Maranatha Volunteers International. The newsletter is published four times a year and features...

The Volunteer Fall 2012  

The Volunteer is the official publication of Maranatha Volunteers International. The newsletter is published four times a year and features...