Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Our New Church Home!

Some really exciting things are happening in our church in San Pancho. Six people have put their faith in Christ in the last two weeks and several of those plus some who were fearful last time are now excited about being baptized and making their faith known on the 13th. The line we drew in the sand is working. 

We started sending two microbuses to SR since many were being left behind and we have been having several visitors from the other guerrilla community as well. Our heart though is to reach out more to the people from San Pancho, the town where our church building is located. Our current rental is on the outskirts of town. If we advertised in the main part of town we wouldn't be able to fit into our rental anymore, since we have outgrown it just with the people from the other 2 communities. Well one of our church members passed this house the other day and noticed a "for sale" sign. He and Jimmy went to look at it today. 
Our town is made up of a main square (which doesn't have any available properties and no one is interested in ever selling and if they were they would ask crazy amounts for them). Then it has a second catty cornered kind of second town square which has the town meeting hall in the middle. This property is about 3 houses down from that secondary town square. We could hold all kinds of outreaches that would be easy to advertise and close for most people to walk to. Basically it is in a great location and if it were in an any better location it would be too expensive for us to buy. 

They are asking $33,000 for it. This is a lowered priced (down from $40,000) since it has been on the "market" for so long. It is more than fair. For once we didn't get quoted the "gringo price" when asking about it. At one time the owners were renting it. They had a bad experience with renters who ran up the power bill and then skipped town. After speaking with them over the phone (they are currently in the States), and us praying like crazy, they agreed to let us rent until we are able to purchase in one lump sum. (People don't usually make payments on property or vehicles here like in the States.)
{The property includes the little house past the end of the wall in the photo} 
It is much larger than our current location, more functional, and a much better location and the rent is only $27 higher than our current place! (That's God!) We got the keys today and can start holding services there as soon as we want. They are giving us 6 months to raise the funds before they put it back on the market. 
This is what is to the left of the photo above. It is a perfect place for people to fellowship before and after the service and for kids to play. The gate makes me SO happy. I am constantly worried about my kids and our church kids getting hit by cars since our other building opens right onto the street.

The building is a very large one story house that is broken up into 3 ideal classroom sized rooms plus a large kitchen/fellowship hall and then another large room for the sanctuary. 
This is the main room, larger than our current sanctuary. This room needs to be painted before we move in. Right now it is covered in blue sponge paint.
When I first moved here this tile would have made me dizzy, but now I really like it! I think it dresses up the room.

It has a metal roof, which can give you a problem with rats since there is an opening between the roof and the wall, but it has plywood false ceilings, which will help with that! (Another improvement from our current rental, which is constantly filled with critters and droppings.)

This is the what we are calling the "fellowship hall" which is right off the sanctuary. It has a working sink. I can picture us prepping tamales in there!
 Do you see the ceiling fan and air conditioner? I have never seen that before in a rental or even in a house in San Pancho. There were lots of things about his house that were pleasantly unexpected. 

This room has an outside door, great for when we have fellowships and want to eat outside.
It has a huge backyard for when our church has grown more and our people are ready to raise money themselves to build their own formal sanctuary. This is ideal for missionaries as we never want to do everything for our people, but you have to do something to get started, so with this property we can get them started and they have room to continue on their own!
{It was hard to get the entire lot in the photo}
There are two classrooms like the one above. I picture one as a kids class and the other as a nursery one day since it had a bathroom attached to it. 
It was so funny to see a bathroom this large here!
This was the other separate bath:
 Here is the third classroom. I picture this as the ladies classroom.  
I would love to put things on the walls that we have been studying as a reminder! We have never had a place this nice before! Jimmy and I have been randomly blurting out how excited we are to each other the past two days!

Look at these hallways! They are nice and wide... made for our church! 
The hallway is long and turns a corner, so if we put the kids class at the end of it, we can be as loud as we want! 

Some of the inside walls were made like this:
I think it is kind of charming... where you don't see the wire. The outside walls are concrete block. The structure is all very sound. 
There is another large closet/pila room at the end of the hall. 
Soon we will have another clean up the church party with our people, to get it ready for our first service. We are SO thankful. We really have felt for the past several months that we have been asking for a place to grow that God had a preexisting structure for us! 

I am so excited about what this means for our church family! There is a new ministry we are planning on starting with our church people very soon and this location is perfect for that! Seriously I am squealing over here!!! Please praise the Lord with us over what He has provided for our church! And please pray that we are able to raise the money needed for the purchase in the next 6 months. Thank you!

The other day Eden found Jimmy's box of clown stuff. 

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