Jesus

New Journey of Making Disciples!

Laxmi (far right) and Phul Maya (far left) with girls from their discipling group.

Laxmi (far right) and Phul Maya (far left) with girls from their discipling group.

Written by Laxmi Gurung, Refugee Kids/Youth Coordinator

I first came to know Jesus through a discipleship group that I belonged to. There I learned about God and made new friends. I’m so thankful to have been a part of this group! They impacted my life in many ways and made me who I am today. Phul Maya Rasaily was one of the friends that I met in this group. Now she is one of the apprentices here at Mission Adelante. I was really excited to work with Phul! Not only is she a good friend, but she is also like a sister who I have always looked up to. This August, we created our own discipling group with the youth from our programs. We have a total of eight young girls. We hang out with them and play soccer during the weekends. I absolutely love spending time with these girls because we get to teach, share life, and have fun together!

During our first week, we asked them what kind of topics they would like to learn about. They answered with interesting questions about belief, maintaining strong faith, and forgiveness. Phul Maya and I will be working together to find stories in the Bible that best connect with these topics. This way the youth can have a better understanding of how these topics relate to the Bible and what it teaches us to do in these situations. Some of the girls in our group do not come from Christian families and I know it would be hard for them to understand if we only talk about Bible stories. I can relate to them because I am not from a Christian family, and I had a hard time understanding the Scripture at first. From my own experiences, I have figured out that learning from the Bible is easier when the stories relate to your own life.

Phul Maya and I will continue to practice Matthew 28:19-20, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” We will do this by encouraging these young girls to continue learning about Christ and creating a safe space for them to ask questions. I ask that you all pray for us and our group to know Christ deeply and create lifelong friendships with one another.

The discipling group gathers at a park for a quick snack and chat.

The discipling group gathers at a park for a quick snack and chat.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

  • We will be hosting a New Volunteer Orientation on Saturday, September 14th from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. If you are interested in volunteering with kids, youth, arts and music, adult ESL, or citizenship classes, this is a great opportunity to jump in the fall trimester (September 16 - December 5). Sign up for the registration here: http://www.missionadelante.org/orientation

CURRENT NEEDS:

  • Do you have a heart for kids? Do you want to make a difference in a kid's life? Kids Adelante is looking for energetic and fun-loving volunteers! If you are interested in volunteering, please visit our website at www.missionadelante.org/kids

  • Thinking about decluttering your house before fall? Adelante Thrift is in need of gently used items in all departments: Men's, Women's, and Children's Clothing, Housewares, Electronics, and Furniture. Adelante Thrift is located at 3720 State Ave KC KS 66102.

Lamenting and Hoping With People from All Places

Members of Mission Adelante attended the CCDA conference in Los Angeles, CA.

Members of Mission Adelante attended the CCDA conference in Los Angeles, CA.

by Jarrett Meek, Founder/Pastor/Executive Director

Never have I been more passionate about my calling to serve, share life and share Jesus with people from other places than I am today.   Walking with vulnerable people as they navigate the challenges of living in a new country, helping outsiders become insiders, sharing and living the Gospel of Christ, sowing truth about who we all are as image-bearers of our Creator God and brothers of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ; these are things that matter deeply to me.  At the intersection of the Greatest Commandments and the Great Commission is a beautiful and special calling to love immigrants and refugees and help outsiders become Kingdom insiders.

"Oh God be not far from me, make haste to help me!"  Psalm 71:12

After a presidential campaign that produced a barrage of harsh language about immigrants and refugees, which was then affirmed by voters, we at Mission Adelante hurt with our friends from other places, because we know how all of this has affected them already.  We pray and hope with many of you that demeaning and severe words won't become harsh policies, but we also understand and want others to grasp the depth of impact the words themselves have had on people who already feel like outsiders.  The heart of these matters doesn't have to do with a political party, who won or lost an election, or a political ideology.  Friends, supporters, staff, and community members of Mission Adelante have a diversity views on all of these things, and Mission Adelante takes no position on political parties or candidates.  But what we all share is deep respect for the dignity of each person created in God's image, the value of families and work, the Biblical principle of showing mercy to vulnerable people, a passion for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, a love for people from all places, and the sorrow of seeing our neighbors hurting.  Friends, our community is hurting.  Will you lament with us?

"For you Oh Lord are my hope, my trust, oh Lord, from my youth." Psalm 71:5

Our hope is in Jesus and Jesus alone.  He is our Lord.  He is King now and forever!  This truth is the sweetest and most beautiful hope there is.  When we lament with our brothers and sisters, we do not do so as those without hope, for He is our refuge and our strength.  And yet we lament.  When we look apprehensively at the future, we may dread the impact that harsh policies may have on our lives or the lives of those we love.  And yet we hope.  We hope, because, though He told us to expect trials of many kinds, He also told us that the testing of our faith produces steadfastness (James 1:3).  We hope because we know that not even death could hold our Lord, and the resurrection broke forth from the crucifixion!  Our community is hoping in Jesus.  Will you hope with us?

"But I will hope continually, and I will praise you yet more and more." Psalm 71:14

As the Mission Adelante community walks into this new and uncertain season, we invite you into it with us, to love our neighbor, to show hospitality to people from all places, to pray, to serve and to share life.  And most of all, to share Jesus!  Will you love people from all places with us?

Reflections on Doing Justly, Loving Mercy, and Walking Humbly

A Team from Mission Adelante was inspired to do justly, love mercy, and walk humble at the annual CCDA conference this month.

A Team from Mission Adelante was inspired to do justly, love mercy, and walk humble at the annual CCDA conference this month.

Written by Jarrett Meek, Executive Director

Recently, a passage from the Old Testament prophet Micah has been on my mind.  "With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the God on high?", asks the prophet.  "Shall I come with burnt offerings, with calves a year old?  Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil?  Shall I give my firstborn...?"  What does the Lord require of us?  As Micah ponders this questions out loud, his mind goes first to external religious practices.  He mentions sacrifices and wonders if the Lord will be pleased with his burnt offerings.  It seems clear he's setting this idea up to be torn down.  Then he goes a bit further, multiplying the sacrifices by really big numbers; "what if my sacrifices numbered in the thousands and tens of thousands?  Then would the Lord be pleased?"  And then he proposes the ultimate act of religious devotion; "What if my religious zeal was so great that I were to give my FIRSTBORN!"  The way he asks the questions communicate the answer: zeal for religious practice does NOT please the Lord.  

Today we might say something like, "What if I pray each morning?  What if I get up at 4:30 a.m. to pray each morning?  Then would the Lord be pleased?" Or, what if I read the Bible in a year?  What if I memorize a whole chapter from the Bible?  Then would the Lord be pleased?"  I believe the answer to these questions is like the answer Micah was implying; the Lord is not impressed by our religious activity.

Micah is not meaning to toss out spiritual disciplines or practices all together.  He just wants to put them in their place.  When he finally gets around to answering the question, he says, "He has shown you, oh man, what is good and what the Lord requires of you."  He reveals his answer in 3 parts:

  1. To do justly
  2. To love mercy
  3. To walk humbly with your God.

Doing justly means, in part, seeking the good of our neighbor, especially our neighbor who is vulnerable to suffering injustice.  If we want to please God, Micah reminds us, we must care deeply about injustice and do something about it.  

When I think about loving mercy, the first thing that comes to my mind is the famous book/musical/movie, Les Miserables.  For those who have seen it, the image of a man, Javert, who loves judgement and the law contrasts in the most powerful way with a man who has received mercy and loves to give it, Jean Valjean.  The Lord is pleased with a person who loves mercy.

Walking humbly with our God has many expressions.  Humility should characterize our relationship with God and should permeate our relationship with our neighbor.  The apostle Paul said it well when he wrote, "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others as more significant than yourselves."  (Philippians 2:3)

As Mission Adelante lives out it's mission, our heart's desire is to please the Lord.  We love to talk about the greatest commandments: to love God and to love our neighbor.  The passage in Micah 6 gives us another way to remember and apply what Jesus said was most important.

Current Needs:

  • Our Leaders in Training (LIT) students are hungry when they arrive at Mission Adelante after school.  We go through about 80 individually wrapped snacks a week! Next time you are at Costco or Sams, think of us!  You can drop them off at Mission Adelante during regular business hours, Monday - Thursday 9:00 - 5:00.

 



 

Igniting a Disciple-making Movement

by Jarrett Meek, Founder, Pastor/Executive Director

Few moments in Mission Adelante’s history have been more significant than the Leadership Community launch retreat we held last weekend.  It was, in many ways, the culmination of ten years of disciple-making and leadership development efforts, coming into bloom on a precious plant that has been often tossed and beaten by the wind and hail of the challenges that we face in our community on a daily basis.  

Forty-eight emerging leaders from our Latino, Bhutanese, and English-speaking communities came together to begin a year-long, multicultural training experience focused on learning to make disciples as Jesus did.  Using stories from the gospels to demonstrate that Jesus’ work on earth focused on equipping disciples who make disciples, we observed and expounded eight principles of his disciple-making ministry (also expounded in the classic book, “Master Plan of Evangelism” by Robert Coleman).  Each principle was introduced by a member of our team (Yanelis, David and Jarrett) with a short teaching segment, and participants were able to listen simultaneously with headphones to a translated, pre-recorded version of the segment in their own language (Nepali, English, or Spanish).  The concise teaching segments were followed by longer small group discussion times that moved from observing Jesus’ disciple-making ministry to putting it into practice in our own neighborhood and context.  What made this time especially effective was the years of disciple-making culture and values that are embedded deep within our ministry’s DNA.  Many expressed that we were putting words to concepts we had been living out, giving a clearer vision of what we’re all working toward.

While we covered a lot of content, the retreat was also full of fun and games.  The first night’s games of dominoes and Dutch Blitz were followed up by an afternoon of soccer, foosball, and ping-pong, and then dramatically eclipsed by a spontaneous two hours of karaoke in Spanish and English on the final night.  All I have to say is Mission Adelante’s got talent!!  

Many of us shared in open mic format, on the final morning, that the greatest highlight of the weekend was worshiping Jesus in three languages at different times during the retreat.  This aspect of our retreat was indeed a unique and profound experience.  Nepali songs led by AB, Ram and the Nepali band expressed praise for our Lord with voices and dancing.  Our Latino musicians passionately led us as we lifted up the name of Jesus.  And, our English speaking group guided us to that intimate place where Jesus is the center of everything.  It was a taste of heaven indeed.

As messy as multicultural endeavors can be, we are excited to continue experimenting, overcoming challenges, and experiencing the Lord together in the process.  And, as we press into making disciples like Jesus did, we are anxiously expecting and praying that the Lord will ignite a multiplying, multicultural movement in our neighborhood.  

“We envision a growing multicultural community of disciples making disciples, where immigrants and others are thriving and using our gifts together to transform our neighborhood and the world for the glory of Jesus Christ.”

I believe now that we are closer than ever to seeing what we’ve been envisioning for so long.  I invite you to pray that this vision will become reality at Mission Adelante.  

In other news:

  • The Bhutanese Teens Club launch could not have gone better! Last week, 14 high school and college-age students joined us to eat, play games, do homework and learn about Jesus in small group bible studies.  We've switched from Tuesday nights to Monday nights this trimester.

  • The Latino Leaders in Training are learning about the life of Jesus and the kind of leader He was as recorded by Matthew!  It is encouraging to see the kids growing in their pursuit of the Lord.

  • Last Thursday was "Superhero Night" at Kid’s Adelante.  It was a blast to see the well-known and made upcharacters the kids chose for their costumes!

Prayer requests:

  • Please pray that the Lord would draw closer to His heart the young mothers in our neighborhood that may feel isolated and that need love, support, and hope.  Pray that they'll find encouragement through community.

Upcoming dates:

Observation Nights: Each trimester we invite potential volunteers to come observe our ministry programs to get a better idea of what serving in our context looks like.  Come on up to 22 S. 18th Street, Kansas City, KS 66102 at 6:30 on any of the following evenings:

  • Tuesdays, March 1 and 8: Bhutanese ministry observations nights (Adult ESL, Kids Club, Middle School Club)
  • Thursdays, March 3 and 10: Latino ministry observation nights (Adult ESL, Kids Club)

A Prayer Walk

Written by Jenny Dunn, Bhutanese ESL Coordinator

Have you ever been prayed over? Wasn’t it just so encouraging to know that someone found you important enough to bring you before their god? Every day, we have the chance to pray for people.  Often times, this is the least offensive way to tell people about our God and how powerful He is.

A couple weekends ago, the Bhutanese ESL volunteers came together and prayed over our neighborhood. We walked the streets and prayed the houses and the people that live in them, the schools and the kids that attend them, sickness, and the barriers that keep people from knowing our God.

As we walked, we saw some of our Bhutanese friends and told them what we were doing. We then prayed over them. They have been suffering from sickness in their house; we prayed that God would heal them.

The other day, I heard an old story that increased my boldness to pray. One of our couple friends had been told back in Nepal that they would be unable to have any children.  This was very disappointing to this woman. One day, one of our friends visited them; she had been sick for a few days with a cold, so our friend prayed that Jesus would heal her cold. Not one month later, she found out that she was pregnant.  That prayer was so memorable to the family that one month later the husband was convinced that God had given them their baby because of it.

I think about the prayers that we pray over our friends and how much more He can do than we can even think, imagine, or dream up.  O Jesus, let us be people of prayer with faith that only You give.

PRAYER NEEDS:

  • Several new Bhutanese refugee families arrived last month and are attending English classes. Please pray they adjust well to life in Kansas City and that they feel welcomed by our community.
  • Pray for our kids to find constructive things to do with their time over school breaks.

CURRENT NEEDS:

  • Leaders in Training, our after school tutoring program, is in need of individually packed snacks. Costco and Sam’s Club are great places to pick some up!  If you can provide some snacks contact Kristen Maxwell at Kristenm@missionadelante.org.

IMPORTANT DATES:

  • Fall break: Tuesday, November 25-Saturday, November 29 No programs. Happy Thanksgiving! 

What Have the Summer Interns Been Up To?

By Edgar Soriano, Ministry Intern

This has been a great summer! Our second internship for teens from our own neighborhood has been an amazing experience for each of them. They have done so many things that have helped them grow closer to God. 

They've gotten the chance to see the other side of ministry and have loved and enjoyed doing it.

The first month of the internship was filled with kids camps, where they played with the kids and helped lead small groups.

They've also been focused on discipling other teens from our community by living life and sharing Jesus with them. They organize social activities for the teens like playing soccer, going to a movie, going bowling, and other fun things that help them share life. We are getting close to the end of the internship but the interns are better then ever.  

We are so proud of them for the great leaders they're becoming.

They have learned and grown so much this year, and we and hope to see all of them back next year.

Current Needs:

  • Leaders in Training, our after-school leadership development and tutoring program, is getting excited about technology!  We are currently looking for tablets that are in new, or very good condition to be used for learning activities during the 2014-2015 school year. If you have one you would like to donate please contact Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.org or Megan McDermott at meganm@missionadelante.org.
  • Looking for a fun way to make a big impact in the fall? Want to pour into the future leaders of our community?   Our relational and fun after-school tutoring and character development program, Leaders in Training, is currently looking for volunteers.  Contact Megan at meganm@missionadelante.org if you are interested!
  • We are rehabbing the house next door to our building, and are in need of residential appliances in good working order.  Please contact Sarah at sarahw@missionadelante.org if you would like to donate an electric range/oven, dishwasher, washer, or electric dryer.

Important Dates:

  • Bhutanese Summer Party--Saturday, August 9 at 4:00 at Wyandotte County Lake Park, 91st and Leavenworth Road, Kansas City, KS 66109. After entering the park you'll come to a fork in the road; go left and continue to Shelter #6. Please bring a dish to share and stay for the awards and cultural presentation!
  • Latino Summer Party--Sunday, August 10 at 5:00 at Wyandotte County Lake Park, 91st and Leavenworth Road, Kansas City, KS 66109. After entering the park you'll come to a fork in the road; go left and continue to Shelters #8 &10. Please note, these are different shelters than the large shelter where the party has been held in previous years. Dress casually and bring a dish to share, lawn chairs and/or a picnic blanket.

Learning from Jesus in Cross-Cultural Ministry

Written by David Stetler, Bhutanese Outreach Director

Cultural and language barriers come together upon those engaged in cross-cultural ministry. Whether you have been in it for years or you are just a beginner, cross-cultural ministry can be challenging, overwhelming and sometimes even disorienting. With these challenges comes an opportunity to look to the One who provides us with all the things we need. The life and teachings of Jesus reveal to us a way to minister cross-culturally that are quite literally already transforming the world. 

First we see that Jesus came to serve. In Philippians 2 we see the humility of Christ "making himself nothing by taking on the very nature of a servant". As we engage in cross-cultural ministry our posture must mimic that of Christ, in taking on the very nature of a servant, to come as one who serves.

Second, Jesus teaches us through the life of Paul.  In 1 Thessalonians 2:8, Paul expresses his desire for relationship with those to whom he is ministering. "We loved you so much that we shared not only the gospel, but our very lives as well." Paul shows us that relationship is vital in embodying the gospel as we share life with those to whom we seek to minister. 


Lastly, we see by Christ's example in John 1 that "...the Word became human and made his home among us." Jesus became a man and entered a new culture as a humble baby who grew up in the Jewish culture. He became one of us. And just as Christ came and lived among the people in his own time and culture, we to have an opportunity to go and live among people at this time and in their culture. Jesus was not just the message of good news, He embodied the message.  As He went into the Jewish culture of that time He embodied the good news and transmitted it through servanthood and loving relationships that would eventually transform the world.


May we follow Jesus in embodying this life-transforming message and learn to serve, share life and share Jesus with people from all places through Christ-centered, loving relationships.


In other news:

  • We are excited to reward our Bhutanese and Latino LIT (Leaders in Training) students with a group field trip to this Friday! We will spend the day at Science City and Zonkers!
Prayer needs:
  • Last week we shared the important need for prayer as we move forward with Adelante Thrift. Please continue to include this community development initiative in your prayers.
Current needs:
  • Our LIT students earn “Mission Adelante Money” for exemplary behaviour and doing extra academic work, which they can spend at a reward store once each trimester.  We are in need of items to stock that store!  Ideas include sports equipment, craft supplies, room decorations, or any small items that might appeal to 8-14 year old students.  If you would like to contribute please contact Megan McDermott at meganm@missionadelante.org or Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.org.

Important dates:
  • Observation Days: Tuesdays, November 5 & 12 (Bhutanese)/Thursdays, November 7 & 14 (Latino) 6:30-8:30  Have you wondered what all goes on around here on a typical evening of programming?  Here's your opportunity to come and see for yourself!
  • Kansas Bhutanese Concert: Saturday, November 16th from 4pm-10pm at Wyandotte High School (2501 Minnesota Ave, Kansas City, KS 66102) Everyone is invited to come and celebrate Nepali Culture at this exciting event sponsored by Mission Adelante and coordinated by our dear friend Ram Rai. It will feature comedians, cultural dances, and ethnic food. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at the RG Asian Store (101 S 18th St, Kansas CityKS 66102). Don’t miss this chance to learn about and celebrate the rich culture of the Bhutanese Refugee community!

Building Interdependent Relationships

by Jarrett Meek

"What would make cross-cultural missionaries more effective at ministering the gospel of Christ?"  That's the question author and long-time missionary Duane Elmer asked believers from many different countries before writing his book,

Cross-Cultural Servanthood

.  The answer, which was repeated over and over again in different forms and sometimes in these exact words, might surprise you:

"Missionaries could more effectively minister the gospel of Christ if they did not think they were so superior to us."  

As I have processed through this book with the staff of Mission Adelante, obvious questions have arisen.

 "What is it that causes people from other cultures to perceive our efforts at serving in this way?"  "Do we indeed have an underlying or unconscious attitude of superiority that comes across when we relate with others?"  "How can we reflect the humility of Christ when we serve and share life?"  Elmer's book is one of the best I've read at addressing these questions.

At Mission Adelante we are becoming a new community, a multicultural community, a community where immigrants and others thrive and use our gifts together to transform our neighborhood.  In the process we are all learning a lot and God is causing us all to grow!

"Relationships" have always been a core value of our ministry.  We believe that ministry is a relational endeavor... not programs, not services, but relationships!  They are the context for making disciples, for loving our neighbor, for equipping leaders, for serving, for sharing Jesus.  Relationships rule!  But, it's not just any kind of relationship we're talking about.  When ministry is done in a relational way, many wrongs are made right, and we see much greater effectiveness.  But, it's also possible to form relationships in a way that's not helpful.  So the kind of relationships we're especially talking about are "interdependent relationships."  That's how it's written in our values document.

"We believe that ministry is relational at its core.  And when relationships are interdependent, learning is mutual, serving is reciprocal, and friendships are life-giving." 

Interdependence means both parties give and receive.  Interdependence means that I learn as much from the other person as he learns from me.  Interdependence means that we need each other.  The times when I've experienced relationships like this, God has moved powerfully in my life, in my friends' lives, and through our ministry together.

As the Mission Adelante community presses into what it looks like to build interdependent relationships and minister the gospel of Christ effectively in a multicultural context, we are aware that if the things that seem like strengths in our own respective cultures make it difficult to relate to others humbly, those very strengths can become our biggest weaknesses in ministry.  The Lord said to the apostle Paul, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness".

2 Corinthians 12:9a

Prayer needs

  • Praise God for a recent opportunity Jason Schoff had to engage pastors and church leaders as part of a four person immigration panel at the Sentralized conference.  Pray for all our pastors who are stepping out to call for new immigration policy.

Current needs

  • We need books!!! Do you have some at home that you might be willing to part with, or do you frequent yard sales or thrift stores? We are in need of easy to read, high interest books to add to our LIT library! Contact Kristen or Megan for more information: Kristenm@missionadelante.org or Meganm@missionadelante.org.
  • We are in need of volunteers to join the Bhutanese Transportation Team! No CDL drivers license required! The greatest need is for drivers on Tuesday evenings. if you or someone you know is interested, please contact Drew Hammond at drew@missionadelante.org.

Sharing the love of Jesus one backpack at a time

All families know that back-to-school season is one of the most expensive times of the year. The fees, the supplies, the new shoes--it can be a little overwhelming. Imagine coming to a new country with only the clothes on your back and few other resources. For the first couple of years it is going to be quite a struggle. If you look at the back-to-school season through that lens, school supplies for your child are probably going to fall pretty low on your list of priorities, and your child will most likely go back to school with few, if any of their needed supplies. Is that a fun way to start a new school year?

The kids outreaches at Mission Adelante have the opportunity to disciple around 190 kids and teenagers on a weekly basis. Ranging in age from 9 months to 19 years old, they all have a unique and wonderful story to tell and it is a blessing to get to be a part of it. We get to plant seeds, water them, and see the fruit of Jesus changing lives and families. What a privilege! 

The most practical way that we can show our young friends the love of Jesus is by providing for physical needs like school supplies. When we do that, we are able to have conversations about why people care about them, and ultimately, why Jesus cares about them. The Gospel can be communicated through the giving of a backpack! Not only that, but the student can go back to school with the confidence and dignity of having what they need to be successful in the year ahead.

Would you be able to help us share the love of Jesus by putting together a backpack for one of our friends?

Please contact Kristen Maxwell

(

KristenM@missionadelante.org

) or Megan McDermott (

Meganm@missionadelante.org

) for more information.

Other News

  • IGNITE 2013 is this Saturday! A Workshop on Developing Businesses for Kingdom Impact - July 20 at 8:30am. You are invited to join us as we learn how fostering entrepreneuership can tranform lives and communities in under-resourced areas.Check out the link below for more information and to register for the event!

IGNITE 2013 Information and Registration:

July 20, 8:30-11:00 a.m

  • The medical clinic team continues to develop partnerships and learn from various community members as they seek to understand the complex medical needs in the neighborhood. We appreciate all of the feedback we are receiving this trimester and know it will help form a medical clinic that represents the diversity of culture and need among our neighbors. 

Prayer Needs

  • Pray that program participants and volunteers would finish out the trimester strong!
  • Please pray for the Adelante Business Coaching Team’s time with Rudy Carrasco this weekend as they continue to develop the ministry. Also pray that those in attendance at Ignite would be inspired to deepen their commitment to business as mission. 
  • Pray for an immigrant family from one of our suburban churches who has a member in deportation hearings.  Please pray for God to open a way for this man to stay in the US with his wife and five children. 

Current Needs

  • The Kids Adelante ministry needs an ipod with a long battery life.. We would use it multiple times each week and would be so grateful to receive one.  Please contact Megan at meganm@missionadelante.org if you are interested. 
  • Looking for an intentional way to impact the future leaders of our community? Our LIT(Leaders in Training, after-school tutoring program)  is currently seeking mentors for the fall..  Please contact Megan at meganm@missionadelante.org if you would like more info.
  • The hot weather is here, and the resource center is in need of two window AC units for a family. If you are about to help, please contact Molly at mollym@missionadelante.org.

Important dates

Observation nights: July 16, 18, 23, & 25.

Have you wondered what all goes on around here on a typical evening of programming?  Here's your opportunity to come and see for yourself!  Come to 22 S. 18th Street, Kansas City, KS 66102 at 6:30.

Summer Interns from our Neighborhood!!

Our Summer Internship opening retreat began in Lawrence

by Jarrett Meek, Founder, Executive Pastor

Jesus, having seen the crowds of people in the towns around Jerusalem had compassion on them.  "The are like sheep without a shepherd," he said.  Where are the shepherds?  Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.  Pray to the Lord of the harvest that he would send out workers into his harvest field."  And then Jesus sends his twelve disciples out to preach the good news.  The disciples became the harvest workers.  This was Jesus' plan!

When I look throughout our urban Kansas City neighborhood I see deep and desperate needs all around, but I also see great potential.  I see sheep without a shepherd, but at the same time I see young leaders emerging.  Our prayer at Mission Adelante has been that God would raise up workers for His harvest from within our neighborhood.  And its happening!  

This weekend we launched our first ever summer internship for emerging leaders from our own neighborhood; 

Helen Venegas, Edgar Soriano, Iris Venegas, and Odalis Delgado.  

These are amazing young people who have been involved in Mission Adelante now for many years, most of them having started with us as kids when Kids Adelante still met in our basement.  Over the years the Lord has worked in their lives in powerful ways and has begun something that we are confident He will continue on until the day of Christ Jesus.  These neighborhood all-stars are learning to follow Jesus, they're making an impact, blazing new trails, loving their peers, and becoming leaders in our ministry.

This summer they will become key-carrying members of our staff, walking closely with mentors, doing ministry together, receiving training workshops and being challenged to seek the Lord in their own personal lives in new and deeper ways.  They are ready to be sent out, just like the disciples were sent out; not yet fully trained, but bravely depending on Jesus for every step in their own growth, knowing that He will use them in ways they never imagined and that the experience will shape their own lives.

The opening retreat for the internship began in Lawrence with a tour of KU's campus, where Iris will be attending in the Fall.  And then we moved to The Barn Bed and Breakfast Inn were we dove into games and activities that deepened our relationships and set a course for pursuing Christ together through the summer.  As I look forward to the next 8 weeks I am expectant and excited about what the Lord will do in their lives and through them.  And I continue to "pray that the Lord would raise us workers for His harvest" from within our neighborhood.  Please pray with us this summer!

In other news

  • This trimester we have a new volunteer position available at Bhutanese Teens Club.Tenteenagerswill serve as captains this trimester. These captains will have leadership roles and help teach or organize games. We are excited to see these students develop their leadership abilityas they learn to follow Yeshu (Jesus) this summer!
  • Four Latino teens confirmed their participation as summer interns this past week.  They will be challenged in new ways over the next two months, but they are ready and eager.
  • Yanelis, the Raices director in Cuba, arrived on Saturday and will help lead our summer interns in discipleship seminars.  We are excited to have her here this summer.
  • A Memorial Day get-together at the Meeks’ home turned into a beautiful multicultural party.  A spontaneous dance party erupted on the patio--and on the picnic table! There was football, volleyball, and croquet in the yard, s'mores in the firepit, and all kinds of meat on the open grill.  It was a slice of heaven!

Prayer needs

  • Please pray for our senators and representatives looking to reform immigration laws.  Pray for them to be wise, courageous, and God-honoring in their decisionmaking.
  • Please pray for English students and conversation partners to enjoy each other and develop authentic relationships as they spend time together this summer. 

Current Needs

  • We need several 4x8 foot ivory-colored cloth tablecloths to be used for events at the building. If you are able to provide these, please contact Jenny Dunn at jennyd@missionadelante.org.
  • We still need a few more board books for our Mommy & Me ESL and early literacy class in June. Please contact laurent@missionadelante.org for book titles.

 Important Dates

  • Latino Summer Program Launch: Tonight

Dignity and Freedom

Written by Drew Hammond, Bhutanese Logistics Coordinator

The Apostle Paul’s passion for the freedom of all people from sin and death that we see as we read Romans is perhaps the most powerful of all his writings. His letter to the Romans is written to both the Jew and the Gentile: people of extremely different first century cultures, but both crushed by the burden of sin. Similarly, in twenty-first century Kansas City, Kansas, we find ourselves weaving between Eastern-Nepali culture and Western-American culture, which are probably as culturally different as they could be.

Much of what Paul writes to the Romans is unpacking what it means that Jesus came to save both the Jew and the Gentile, bearing the burden of sin and redeeming them through his death and resurrection. In Romans 1:16 Paul writes, “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” Paul teaches us that the Gospel is for all people of all cultures.

At Mission Adelante, we long to see people of every culture living in freedom from sin and death while maintaining cultural identity and dignity. We strive to proclaim the truth of Jesus to our brothers and sisters from other cultures in ways that affirm their culture and ultimately their heart. That can be as simple as sharing meals with our immigrant friends in their homes and enjoying the food they offer us. It can also be more complex, like discipling indigenous leaders to lead house churches in their first language, and helping them incorporate elements from their native culture in ways that proclaim Jesus as Lord. Our goal is to live our lives in the freedom Jesus offers alongside our friends from other tribes, tongues, and nations, so they can join us in experiencing His grace every day.

In other news:

  • Our Missional Community met Monday evening to welcome the Meek family back.  We meet each month for fellowship because we strongly believe in the importance of relationships. It was a fun time for the children and adults from our multicultural community to share a meal, play soccer, and catch up with each other.
  • Last week we welcomed Kristen Allen onto our staff officially to lead our Community Development Initiatives.  This weekend she is attending the Christian Community Health Fellowship conference in Atlanta to get heavy dose of vision and encouragement as we continue doing surveys in our community and building our team for this initiative.
  • The Adelante Thrift board is considering locations within our target area for our thrift store.  We are dreaming of a “business as missions” venture that will create jobs for people in our neighborhood and provide a sustainable source of income for some of our other ministries.
  • We are preparing to do our first ever summer internship for Latino youth from our own neighborhood!
  • Yanelis Lopez, the leader of RAICES, our partner ministry in Cuba, will be joining us for the summer to help lead our summer internship and learn along with our staff.
  • A dozen English class volunteers met last weekend to discuss building authentic relationships with our Bhutanese friends and their families. We were encouraged and went home with several practical ways to engage more deeply with them.

Prayer needs:

  • In order to pull off our weekly programming it takes an army of volunteers! These programs are very important because they serve as the initial jumping-off point for many of the relationships that develop in our community. Please join us in praying that the Lord would provide the volunteers needed to make this Summer’s trimester programming successful.
  • Please pray for the final part of the selection process for our summer internship.  We are praying that God will bring forward the right group of Latino youth for the pilot year of our program!


Current needs:

  • Sets of 5-7 toddler-friendly board books (baby animals, counting, body parts, etc) for a Mommy & Me English workshop this summer. If you are able to provide one or more books, please contact Lauren at laurent@missionadelante.org.
  • The Bhutanese outreach needs women college-age or older to volunteer at the Bhutanese Teens Club on Tuesday nights this Summer from 6pm-8:30pm. Volunteers would get the opportunity to show Bhutanese Teen girls the love of Jesus as they interact with them during the Teens Club program (youth group) through games, music, telling bible stories, praying, etc. If interested please contact Hannah Hume at hannahh@missionadelante.org.
  • We are looking for four Bhutanese Kids Club volunteers who would be interested in spending 10 weeks investing in small group of kids!  We need assistant leaders for the 4 year-olds, 2nd graders, 3rd graders and 4th-6th grade boys (would need to be a male volunteer).  If you are interested in serving, or would like more information contact Kristen Maxwell at Kristenm@missionadelante.org.
  • The resource center is in need of boys and girls and toddler clothing  Please help us out by not leaving donations outside of the Resource Center, or inside or outside of our facility!  The weather can make a mess out of them and render the donation useless!  Please contact Molly at mollym@missionadelante.org to arrange a time to drop-off your donation.


Important dates:

  • Volunteer Orientation & Training: Saturday, May 18, 9:00-12:30 All volunteers should attend this training once at the beginning of serving with Mission Adelante. It's also a great way for someone to become familiar with Mission Adelante's ministry. If you or someone you know is interested in finding out more about what we do, and about our volunteer opportunities, please plan to attend/encourage him or her to attend this informative training. 
  • All Volunteer Huddle & Dessert: Monday, May 20, 6:30 p.m. We encourage everyone that will be volunteering with us during our summer trimester to attend so we can prepare for a great launch. 
  • Summer trimester programs launch: Week of May 27

The Faces of Immigration

Written by Lauren Timberlake

Photos by Molly Merrick

We have recently shared several posts inviting readers to investigate what the Bible says about immigrants and to examine attitudes in the light of those truths. That is hard work, and we thank God so many are taking the time to engage in something that we really care about at Mission Adelante. Today, we’d like to focus on one of the reasons why we care so much. Immigration is not just theology or politics to us-- it is individuals and families, grandmothers and little boys, friends and even co-laborers with us in our efforts towards sharing the message of Jesus. Here are some photos of the immigrants in our community, taken at last week’s trimester-end celebrations. As you scroll, please pray for these people and the community they represent, for their families and their futures, for health and stability, for life and hope.

Ratna, Julie, and Ran walk into the Bhutanese Family Fun Celebration together.

Beth loves on kids as they wait in line for food at the Latino End of Trimester Party.

The youngest group from Kids Adelante lines up together after receiving awards.

Brenda and Tika enjoy creating temporary henna “tattoos” together at the mehndi station.

The program awards are finished, and Krishna and Janelle help get the Nepali dance party started.

Michael earned the pinnacle award for learning all the verses and not missing a day of Kids Adelante this term.

Kids Club friends Sarah, Kabita and Pramoda spend time together as they wait for dinner.

In other news:

  • Informational meetings were held on Sunday afternoon for students who are interested in beginning the application process for the Leaders in Training Program for the 2013-2014 school year.  Many students attended and have begun the application process!
  • More than 90 evangelical leaders from Kansas City gathered on Tuesday to hear from Noel Castellanos, CEO of Christian Community Development Association, about our call to confront injustice for the benefit of our neighbors, specifically, in this case, injustice in the form of out-dated immigration policy. See Fox 4's news coverage of the event.
  • We're always grateful for donations to our Resource Center.  Please help us out by not leaving donations outside of the Resource Center, or inside or outside of our facility!  The weather can make a mess out of them!  Please contact Molly at mollym@missionadelante.org to arrange a time to drop-off your donation.

Prayer needs:

  • As we reflect on the past trimester and consider the feedback we've received, pray for God to lead us to continue to shape our programs to best serve the needs of immigrants, and to most clearly demonstrate to them the love of Christ.
  • Jarrett & Kristen Meek and family's sabbatical is about to conclude, and although we find ourselves increasingly eager to welcome them back to Kansas City this Monday, we know it will be a taxing transition for them.  Please pray for the Lord to supply extra energy and patience for them in the coming weeks.

Important dates:

  • Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Snacks and Training: Saturday, May 4, 2:00,at Lauren Timberlake’s house. Please consider joining us for fun, prayer and some cultural training as we keep learning how to love the Bhutanese well. Please contact Jenny Dunn at jennyd@missionadelante.org for more details.
  • Volunteer Orientation & Training: Saturday, May 18, 9:00-12:30All volunteers should attend this training once at the beginning of serving with Mission Adelante.  It's also a great way for someone to become familiar with Mission Adelante's ministry.  If you or someone you know is interested in finding out more about what we do, and about our volunteer opportunities, please plan to attend/encourage him or her to attend this informative training.
  • All Volunteer Huddle & Dessert: Monday, May 20, 6:30 p.m.  We encourage everyone that will be volunteering with us during our summer trimester to attend so we can prepare for a great launch.
  • Summer trimester programs launch: Week of May 27

Sabbatical Reflections from Costa Rica

by Jarrett Meek, Founder, Executive Director/Pastor

A sabbatical is a strange and wonderful thing; a phenomenon that defies the laws of productivity and normal 

adult experience.  The last time I can remember being free from responsibility for four solid months was before I entered kindergarten, which I naturally don't remember.  Even as a kid, the long summers of swimming, romping in the woods behind our house, and playing baseball always came to an abrupt end after just three months, and were replaced by the rigors of school and the constant pressure of much-dreaded homework.  And then, as an adult, there never really had been a break from responsibility.  Even during a rare two-week vacation there was always the knowledge that my work was waiting at home to punish me for leaving it unattended for so long.  And then suddenly (or not so suddenly if I think about all the preparation that was required), I was extracted from the battlefield of urban ministry in Kansas City on a snowy New Year's Eve morning.  When we landed that evening, I found myself surrounded by the sights, smells and sounds of Costa Rica with fireworks lighting up every corner of the warm night sky in what seemed like an extravagant city-wide, "welcome to sabbatical" party; a celebratory beginning of four months free of responsibility and separated from ministry by 2500 miles.  The lessons learned and the experiences lived during this time are in some ways very profound and in others quite mundane.  If you had four months to read, I would share it all with you.  But, for now you'll have to settle for a few highlights!

Routines, Rhythms, and Habits

I learned that a sabbatical is not a vacation.  On vacation, every routine is thrown out the window along with a whole lot of money.  Well, a family can't live like that for four months!  Besides realizing that the high prices of most products in Costa Rica would mean we would be watching every Colón (1/5 of a penny),  we also discovered fairly quickly that if we were going to thrive here during this time we would need to establish some rhythms and routines.  The opportunity to do this without factoring in work meant that daily exercise with the kids, homeschooling (yes, I was in charge of homeschooling during sabbatical), family devotional times, regular time playing basketball and baseball with Charlie, and frequent dates with Kristen would be easily established.  What a rich family time!

My own personal study time was also factored into the daily rhythm; about 2 hours/day of reading, writing, prayer, and Bible study.  This time was not pressured in any way, but at first was simply my time, doing whatever I felt like. It later became a little more focused as I found my rhythm.  One of the things I read in the first month was a classic Latin American novel called "Cién Años de Soledad."  As I reached back to try to remember all of the things I've enjoyed doing in the past, but haven't had time to do, I was struck by the importance of having habits that keep me from having to spend the mental energy making every decision each day about what to focus on.  I discovered that where there are habits and routines established around some of the most important things in our lives we are able to execute them much more consistently because we're not starting from scratch each day trying to make a new plan.  I reflected a lot on the inconsistency of my own spiritual disciplines over the last several years, and a personal goal for this sabbatical became to gently re-establish habits and rhythms around some of the things that are hard to maintain or restart during the busyness of life and ministry on the battlefield.

Primacy of Relationships

In the abundance of family time, devotional time, reading, and the relaxed schedule, the Lord brought me back many times to one important word: relationships.  Where have I put ministry productivity above loving others?  Where have I put ministry function above loving my teammates?  Where have I put results over relationships?  I don't want to be that kind of leader.  I don't want to be that kind of person.  I've seen it before; strong and gifted leaders whose competence replaces character and whose talent becomes a substitute for healthy relationships.  Surely results in ministry are enhanced by rich and thriving relationships over the long-haul.  Surely relationships are the essence of real godly ministry.  I pray the Lord will allow me to grow in this area and give me the eyes to see how I need to change and where I need to pursue reconciliation with people I've hurt along the way.

Being vs. Doing

The tension between "doing and being" is often talked about in ministry circles.  I don't know how this happened, but I think I've always misunderstood what was meant by the "being" side of this equation.  I guess I thought it meant inactivity, rest, just existing, the OPPOSITE of doing; kind of like the difference between work and rest.  Somehow during this sabbatical God changed my understanding of what the "being" side of this balance looks like and gave me a new excitement for it.  First, I discovered that it really isn't a balance at all.  Second, although the work vs. rest rhythm is very important, "BEING" in this sense should not be equated with rest as though it were the opposite of doing.  I spent a lot of time plumbing the depths of my own heart and character and reflecting on who I AM and who I want to BE.  I tried to put some of those thoughts in writing in the form of personal values and found that many of them ended up identifying character qualities that I long to see God form in me.  BEING, I discovered, has to do with what kind of person I AM.  And instead of creating tension with doing, the who I am, is the fountain out of which the doing flows.  "Every good tree produces good fruit..." (Mt. 7:17).  So on sabbatical I had time to reflect on who I am and who I want to be... my own growth and what God is doing in me.  Here is one example:

Lover of Mercy:  I want to always see the potential in the people around me, even those who fail many times.  I want to be quick to show mercy even when I have been personally wronged.  I want to avoid taking harsh and critical views of others, opting instead to be a person who defends the dignity of those whom others judge harshly.

Run While You Can!

Running has been an important part of my life since I was young.  I'll spare you the details of my glory days, but the point is that during this sabbatical I have renewed my love for running.  When we arrived here I have to confess that I was in the worst physical condition of my life.  My joints hurt, I had been dealing with a tight hamstring for nearly a year, I had a mild case of sciatica and a growing belly, and I really hadn't run much since a case of IT band syndrome had foiled my first attempt at training for a marathon back in the summer of 2011.  I felt like I was on a downward spiral in terms of exercise capacity and I was kind of depressed about it.  Well, here I've had ample time to rebuild little by little.  Somewhere along the way it dawned on me that there would come a day when I would not be ABLE to run anymore.  I would not be able to sprint.  I would not be able to run 2 miles.  "I need to enjoy this while I can", I thought.   And so I have!  And as we near the end of this four month half-time break, I am in better running condition that I have been in the last ten years.  I'm 32 years old again!  Just for fun, I've been running a slower version of the dreaded "quarter" workout we used to do in high school track and cross country; 16 x 400m sprints.   And now that I'm back in the exercise groove, my motivation to continue when we return is very strong.

Impact on Mission Adelante

It was never really in doubt, but that doesn't mean it was not significant.  The Lord has blessed Mission Adelante with some really gifted leaders who have been able to guide the ship and take new ground during my absence. And it is now clear that He has built a ministry that is not dependent on the personality of its founder.  All of the responsibilities of running the ministry were passed on to capable staff who led through highlights and challenges, without ever having to hit the emergency button and call me back in.  Not only did Mission Adelante survive, but its impact increased, and its leaders were challenged to grow in ways that would never have happened if I had been there.  And we will now have the opportunity to press into the lessons learned from this "disappearing leader" experiment as we look forward to how God will use this time in our future as a ministry.

With a couple of weeks left in this out-of-responsibility experience, my mind and heart are shifting back home, and I'm excited to reengage with the community and mission that God has given us.  There are exciting things on the horizon for Mission Adelante; things I am eager to share with you soon.  So, I invite you to pray for me in this transition, and for my family, and for the Mission Adelante community as we continue to live our God's calling to serve, share life and share Jesus with people from other places .  Thank you for your friendship and partnership!

Living Life-on-Life

Written by Jenny Dunn, Bhutanese ESL Coordinator

Hannah Hume with two Bhutanese teen girls

Hannah Hume with two Bhutanese teen girls

One of our core values at Mission Adelante is to make disciples and leaders that are capable of reproducing the work of Jesus.

This past year, our staff read and discussed the book

The Master Plan of Evangelism

by Robert E. Coleman. This book does an incredible job of bringing to life the way that Jesus made disciples as we look through the Gospels.

One of His strategies was association.  Coleman says that Jesus made a habit of "

being with them"

. Jesus taught these men his way by drawing them close to himself. It seems to be too simple as we consider the instruction in all the curriculum and books that tell us how to disciple.  Jesus was his own school and curriculum!   We at Mission Adelante are not opposed to such things as tools, but we find it very refreshing to see that anyone can make disciples simply by intentionally being with people and capturing teachable moments.

Our staff has grown so much in this area since we studied this book together.  For example, a couple months ago, my husband and I had a painting day at our house. We had been painting for a little while when Hannah Hume, the Bhutanese Teens Coordinator called.  She told me that she was coming over and bringing some Bhutanese teens along. I knew this was going to be interesting because most of the Bhutanese have never painted before.  When they arrived we assigned them to priming the basement stairway.  While they worked, I was painting the door to the basement, so I got to overhear their conversation.  I got to hear how Hannah teaches them about following Jesus in small and ordinary things, like how Jesus asks us to treat others with respect and that means not priming your sister’s hair.

This is just one example of how our friends learn about Jesus’ heart by spending time with Jesus-followers. The staff and volunteers at Mission Adelante pray that many will know Jesus and love Him through their association with us.

In other news:

  •  
  • Cody Lorance and his family from Trinity International Baptist Mission in the Chicago area came to visit Mission Adelante to see the ministry and share some training and experiences.  It was a wonderful time of learning, friendship and fellowship with them.
  • Marlen, Gissel, and Lorenzo have been Leaders In Training during the past few school years, and will be our first graduates of the tutoring program! As the three are completing eighth-grade this year, they've reached the upper limit of the LIT program. We are excited to celebrate their accomplishment at the party on Saturday!
  • Welcome to the Mission Adelante Community, Elsa Louise Holland! Latino ESL Level 1 Coordinator Jacob Holland and wife Michelle welcomed Elsa early Tuesday morning. Mother and baby are very well and big sisters Adie and Keziah couldn't be more excited!

Prayer needs:

  •  
  • Pray for the parties this weekend that conclude our spring trimester!  Pray for moments of sweet fun and fellowship for our community members and volunteers.
  •  
  • Please continue to pray for a neighborhood family who is mourning the death of their 14 year old son, killed in a drive-by shooting nearly two weeks ago.
  • Pray for God’s favor over two Latinos in our community who are applying for U.S. residency.

Current needs:

  • Dance party lights that we could borrow for the Bhutanese Spring Party this Sunday. Contact Jenny Dunn for more information: jennyd@missionadelante.org.
  • The Bhutanese Spring party on April 14th is a bowling party and we need new socks in kid, teen, and adult sizes by Saturday, April 13th. Contact Jenny Dunn for more information: jennyd@missionadelante.org.
  • Our Resource Center is low on gently-used kitchen items. Please contact Molly Merrick at mollym@missionadelante.org to set up a time to drop-off your donation.  Please help us out by not leaving donations inside or outside our facility.  Thanks!

Important dates:

Please note: The dates of the Latino and Bhutanese Spring Parties are reversed on the "2013 Key Dates" magnets. The dates listed here are correct.

  • Saturday, April 13, 5:00-8:00: Latino Spring Party, at Bethany Community Center. Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens, Kids Adelante, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service. Bethany Community Center is located on Central Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas (66102) between 11th and 12th Streets, behind the fire station.
  • Sunday, April 14, 5:00-8:00: Bhutanese Spring Party, at St. John's Catholic Club and Community Center, 720 N. 4th Street, Kansas City, KS 66101.  Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens Club, Kids Club, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service.
  • Saturday, May 4, 2:00: Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Snacks and Training,at Lauren Timberlake’s house. Please consider joining us for fun, prayer and some cultural training as we keep learning how to love the Bhutanese well. Please contact Jenny Dunn at jennyd@missionadelante.org for more details.

Celebrating New Life

Written by David Stetler, Bhutanese Outreach Director

When the disciples realized that the very-much dead and buried Jesus had risen from the dead, they recognized that life as they knew it had just changed forever.  Jesus was alive again and new life was beginning to emerge.  Through the power of the Resurrection God broke into the narrative of human history, into our lives of brokenness, and He had started something NEW!

This year has been filled with new life at Mission Adelante.  We have seen the living God come into the middle of pain, sorrow and life's many challenges and offer transformation.  The message of love and forgiveness flows out of the message of the Resurrection, and God says to us “This is the time” when all things began to be made new - beauty instead of ashes, gladness instead of mourning, and joy instead of despair.  When we leave it all behind to follow Jesus, we are promised new life in Him. With a divine sigh of relief, the God who created all things releases us from the past, and we step into new life with Him forever. What a promise!

At Mission Adelante, sharing Jesus with people from other places is our passion because we believe that He can and He is making all things new.  We see His truth and love give hope, joy and new life.  Whether it's teaching English or investing in the lives of kids, sharing a meal with a family or tutoring a student, walking with a teenager through life or leading someone through the teachings of Jesus - we find Him making all things new. As we share life with these friends, in the joys and sorrows, we see His transforming love at work changing it all into beauty and gladness. He is truly making all things new.

In Other News:

  • One of our church partners, Christ Community EFC, is hosting a conference this weekend called CG2013: Pursuing the Common Good of Our City.  Jason Schoff will have the opportunity to share during a break-out session about a biblical perspective on the immigrant living in our communities and Mission Adelante's ministry efforts.  Find out more about the conference by clicking here.
  • Last Tuesday the Bhutanese Teenagers celebrated a Nepali cultural festival called “holi” at teens club. During this festival people throw brightly-colored chalk powder at one another and celebrate good conquering evil. So, Mission Adelante decided to get in on the action and throw some chalk ourselves, while celebrating Jesus, the ultimate good, conquering the evils of death, sickness, and sin in our own lives. It was a fun evening of worshiping Jesus together in a traditional Nepali way.
  • The Latino Leaders in Training students have eagerly taken on running the children’s activities during our Spring trimester party, a week from Saturday.  We are so blessed to see our young leaders growing right before our eyes!
Prayer needs:
  • The pick-up route for the Bhutanese LIT students yesterday intersected with two locations where people were fatally shot over the weekend.  One victim was a 14 year-old boy who was in class with some of our 8th graders.  Pray for the Lord’s peace and protection to overwhelm our neighborhood, especially kids trying to make sense of senseless violence.
  • Please pray that the current trimester of outreach programs would conclude well next week, and pray that the Lord would provide fresh vision and clarity as we begin to plan for the upcoming summer trimester. We want our plans to be his plans, and his vision to be ours.
  • Pray for our Spring parties on April 13 and 14, that our students will feel really blessed by being honoring for their effort and achievement this trimester.
  • On April 21st we will have our informational meeting for next year’s Leaders in Training program.  At this meeting families will hear the vision of LIT and pick up an application packet.  Pray that the Lord would bring the right kids to be a part of next year’s program.
Current needs:
  • Pony beads with large holes (to thread on yarn) for Kids Club crafts.  Contact Kristen Maxwell for more information: kristenm@missionadelante.org.
  • Dance party lights that we could borrow for the Bhutanese Spring Party. Contact Jenny Dunn for more information: jennyd@missionadelante.org.
  • The Bhutanese Spring party on April 14th is a bowling party and we need new socks in kid, teen, and adult sizes by Thursday April 11th. Contact Jenny Dunn for more information: jennyd@missionadelante.org
Important dates:
Please note: The dates of the Latino and Bhutanese Spring Parties are reversed on the "2013 Key Dates" magnets. The dates listed here are correct.
  • Saturday, April 13, 5:00-8:00: Latino Spring Party, at Bethany Community Center.  Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens, Kids Adelante, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service. Bethany Community Center is located on Central Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas (66102) between 11th and 12th Streets, behind the fire station.
  • Sunday, April 14, 5:00-8:00: Bhutanese Spring Party, at St. John's Catholic Club and Community Center, 720 N. 4th Street, Kansas City, KS 66101.  Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens Club, Kids Club, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service.
  • Saturday, May 4, 2:00: Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Snacks and Training, at Lauren Timberlake’s house. Please contact Jenny Dunn at jennyd@missionadelante.org for more details.

I Was a Stranger...

Written by Jason Schoff, Latino Outreach Director


When you go about daily life in the city, you will almost certainly run across people from all reaches of the world.  Every day, more and more immigrants move to our cities seeking new opportunities and we see them in our grocery stores, restaurants, and public spaces like our parks.  Do you ever wonder what life is like for these residents of our city?  The cities we know and love are quite often not easy for foreigners to adjust to.  You can never really understand this reality until you have put yourself in their shoes.  While this might be impossible, Mission Adelante attempts to help staff and volunteers become more and more empathetic as they befriend and build relationships with our immigrant neighbors.


Have you wondered where the idea of "putting yourself in someone else's shoes" originated?  I would put my bet on God's Word.  "I was a stranger and you invited me in" are the words of Jesus in Matthew 25:35.  These words communicate such a strong sense of both hospitality and concern for the stranger and there is no question that foreigners would have to be included in the category of "strangers."  What if God had commented more on this topic with relation to the foreigner?  He actually does, throughout the Bible!  We have been asking our staff and volunteers to join us on a 40 day challenge to read scriptures related to this topic and God has strengthened our resolve to help our immigrant neighbors and friends.  

Knowing God's word better will always help us to make informed and God-honoring decisions.  I would assert that we want to see God honored in the decisions our government makes, including decisions pertaining to our immigrant friends.  What will happen with immigration?  Should the laws be changed?  How should they be different?  The Bible has a lot to say on this!  I want to challenge you to join us in reading through scripture and answering these questions as a kingdom citizen.  You may find the answers will lead you to act on behalf of what God desires.  May God bless you for pursuing Him and his ways.

Join the 40 day challenge here.  


In other news:

  • Although our regular programs were suspended last week for Spring Break, many of our volunteers used the opportunity to get together with immigrants they've gotten to know through serving. Way to go, volunteers!
Prayer needs:
  • Pray for a strong finish to the school year for our current Leaders In Training and that the Lord will bring the right students and families to the informational meetings for next year's LIT on Sunday April 21st.
  • This summer, for the first time, we will be selecting immigrant teens to serve as interns. Pray for our staff as we finalize our summer intern selection.
Important dates:
Please note: The dates of the Latino and Bhutanese Spring Parties are reversed on the "2013 Key Dates" magnets. The dates listed here are correct.
  • Saturday, April 13, 5:00-8:00: Latino Spring Party, at Bethany Community Center.  Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens, Kids Adelante, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service. Bethany Community Center is located on Central Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas (66102) between 11th and 12th Streets, behind the fire station.
  • Sunday, April 14, 5:00-8:00: Bhutanese Spring Party, at St. John's Catholic Club and Community Center, 720 N. 4th Street, Kansas City, KS 66101.  Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens Club, Kids Club, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service.
  • Saturday, May 4: Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Snacks and Training, at Lauren Timberlake’s house. Please contact Jenny Dunn at jennyd@missionadelante.org for more details.

The Power of Prayer

Written by Hannah Hume, Bhutanese Teens Coordinator


Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name I will do it.  John 14:13-14

Prayer is a big deal. Through it we have access to the most powerful being in existence, the sustainer of all life, and that being has made promises to his people regarding prayer; promises like the one above. Often times though, we struggle to take God at his word. He will do whatever we ask in His name? These types of scriptures may feel too good to be true or feel confusing to us. However, there they are in the Bible, promises Jesus made in His word.

In the time I’ve been with Mission Adelante I have learned a lot about prayer as I have spent more and more time with my Bhutanese friends, both “Yeshu bhakta’s” (Jesus followers) and Hindus. When I visit my friends at their home, they often take me to lay hands on their sick grandmother and pray for her in Jesus’ name.  Occasionally a teen girl will ask me to pray for the healing of her broken heart after a breakup with her boyfriend. Sometimes these requests are made by those who follow Jesus but more commonly, the request comes from a member of a Hindu family. They truly believe that Jesus has the power to heal, and He does!

Over and over again friends have reported nonchalantly that the prayers worked and God has healed their relative.  For them, this is just the natural outcome of prayer.  Many times I am the surprised one. I have so much to learn from my friends about believing in the power of prayer!  

Here at Mission Adelante prayer is one of our central values. Each thing we do to make Christ known in Kansas City, KS can only work if God moves. We are dependant on Him, and this drives us to our knees. Please join us in praying for God’s continued movement in our neighborhood, and especially that God’s power, demonstrated through His answers to prayer, would bring Bhutanese to put their trust in Jesus as their Lord.


In other news:

  • The spring trimester of our Bhutanese and Latino outreaches launched last Thursday with a lot of momentum and we are excited to see immigrants and volunteers develop lasting friendships in the coming weeks.
  • The staff from partner church Christ Church visited Mission Adelante yesterday to share a meal with our staff and serve together by preparing welcome food baskets for new refugee families.
  • Bhutanese Children's Ministry Director Kristen Maxwell designed the Leaders In Training program for 8-12 year old Bhutanese students to include the preservation of their cultural heritage. For that reason, time is planned for older members of the Bhutanese community to teach the students how to write in Nepali, their native language.

Prayer needs:
  • Please pray for the Bhutanese ESL students that have been designated as "class leaders" to take ownership of their tasks this trimester.
  • Pray for spiritual hunger to grow among the Bhutanese teenagers.
  • We are praising God for the amazing volunteers that lock arms with us to love our community that He has blessed us with for yet another trimester!
  • Please pray for God to bring more volunteer drivers to help transport our Bhutanese friends to outreach programs on Tuesday nights.
  • One of our Latina friends delivered a still birth last week. Please pray that she will experience God’s comfort.

Current needs:
  • Volunteer drivers for Mission Adelante’s Bhutanese Transportation Team! We transport about 150 people to our outreach programs in our two shuttle buses each Tuesday evening, and we need more drivers to serve for two hours a week. Must be 25 years of age or older, NO CDL REQUIRED. For more information, please contact Drew Hammond at drewh@missionadelante.org
  • A dining table and chairs for a recently-arrived family from Nepal. If you have one available please contact Drew Hammond at drewh@missionadelante.org.
  • Two space heaters for a family without heat in their home. Please contact Molly Merrick at mollym@missionadelante.org if you can donate one.

Important dates:
  • Observation Days: Tuesdays, March 5 & 12 (Bhutanese)/Thursdays, March 7 & 14 (Latino) 6:30-8:30  Have you wondered what all goes on around here on a typical evening of programming?  Here's your opportunity to come and see for yourself!

A Yeshu Concert Celebration

Written by David Stetler, Bhutanese Outreach Director

A week ago Saturday the cross-cultural, western-eastern fusion rock band Aradhna led by the sitar-playing Chris Hale came to visit Kansas City and played a special concert at our end-of-year party to help us finish the year with a huge celebration.  

 The songs that Chris and the band performed for us were all sung in Nepali or Hindi which are both languages that our Bhutanese friends understand very well.  Nepali is their first language and Hindi is usually their second.  Aradhna has a four man band playing the sitar, the bass, the guitar and a really cool hand drum called the tabla.  They sing songs called Yeshu Bhajans which are Jesus worship songs and are all about Jesus, who he is, and what he has done for us.

We gave out awards to our program participants and our faithful volunteers during dinner and celebrated the year together.  We also had a wonderful time singing and dancing to the Yeshu Bhajans celebrating Prameshwar Yeshu, Jesus as Lord, and all that he brings us.  It's amazing how much the joy of music brings when we can sing about Jesus and the peace and joy that he brings us.  

During the Aradhna concert intermission my good friend Janga played a few songs in Nepali about Yeshu (Jesus) that he has recently written.  The first song was about why Jesus came to the earth and the other was a beautiful song to the tune of The Benediction. Janga has been leading worship for our Teens Club, Leaders in Training and our house church for several months.  We love watching him grow as a leader and as a musician and it was great to be present while he shared some of his new songs with the broader Bhutanese community.  

All in all, it was a great night of incredible music, wonderful food and amazing friends as we reflected on a remarkable year.  And at the same time, just down the street, our Latino friends were having a huge party celebrating too.  We are looking forward to celebrating together the birth of Jesus on Christmas Eve!

In other news:

  • Jason Schoff taught an adult ESL class at a local public school this fall that included one Bhurmese student.  She was the only Bhurmese amidst Latinos.  We were excited to have this opportunity with a new immigrant group.

Prayer needs:

  • Praise God with us! The first of the teens in our community brought to the States as a child that applied for the right to work through the federal Deferred Action program introduced last summer has received his documents, and the chance for a better future.
  • Please pray for the continuing development of the leaders of our house churches--Bhutanese and Latino--as we continue to spend time intentionally discipling them.
  • Please pray that the Mission Adelante staff would enjoy a restful break and return in January ready to jump back into ministry.
  • Pray for our tri-cultural (Bhutanese, Latino, and North American) Christmas Eve service to minister to all present.

Current needs:

  • Volunteers to join us in all our outreach programs for our next trimester, mid-January to mid-April.  Check out www.missionadelante.org/volunteerto see all our volunteer opportunities!
  • GPS units for our Transportation Team. If you are able to provide one, please contact Drew Hammond at drewh@missionadelante.org
  • Mattresses for newly arrived Bhutanese refugee families. If you are able to provide one please contact Drew Hammond at drewh@missionadelante.org.
  • Volunteers to help sort clothes the resource center. If you are interested in helping, please contact Molly Merrick at mollym@missionadelante.org to arrange a time to come up.
  • A Conference Table: 6’ long, dark brown, and in good condition. Please contact Morgan Ham at morganh@missionadelante.orgif you can point us towards one.
  • The Bhutanese and Latino LIT programs need a small group (or groups) to purchase pre-packaged, healthy, after-school snacks for the kids.  We would be blessed to receive a couple months worth of snacks.  Please contact Megan at meganm@missionadelante.org.
  • Fifteen to twenty 8 GB flash drives for the Latino LIT students to use, preferably with a ring or another way to attach them to lanyards. Please contact Megan at meganm@missionadelante.org.

Important dates:

  • Christmas Eve Service: Monday, December 24 @ 6:00 at Mission Adelante. This will be our first combined worship service with both our Latino and Bhutanese communities!  Multi-ethnic refreshments will follow.
  • The Mission Adelante office will be closed for Christmas December 25-January 1.

Enrichment Through Multi-generational Friendship

Written by Megan McDermott, Latino Children's Ministry Director

At Mission Adelante, one of the things that we are passionate about is investing in the next generation of leaders.  Throughout the Gospels, we read that Jesus was constantly attending to the widows, orphans, and aliens that he encountered. We desire to encourage the children we love and serve, to love and serve others in turn, the way that Jesus did.  One ongoing relational opportunity that we foster for our Leaders in Training is visiting Bickford Place, an assisted living home, each month.  For the school year, each child is paired with the same resident, or buddy, to learn from one another, do fun crafts, and ultimately become friends.   Both the children and residents are blessed by the friendships that develop.  Two of the LIT girls wrote about their recent experiences at Bickford. 

"I liked getting to know my buddy Roma.  I felt excited about going to Bickford because my buddy was really nice to me and she also told us about her childhood. When she told us her story, she let us look all around her room. She also let us look at all her pictures. We saw a picture when she was very very young. I enjoyed spending time with her because it was my very first time going to Bickford.  She also liked spending time with us because she told us. Roma said that I was really really sweet to her and that I asked a lot of questions. When it was time to go, I felt sad, but I will go back again.  I hope I get to spend time with Roma again." --Perla, age 9

"Bickford is a good place to be because the people there are super nice and friendly.  I feel very exicted when I go to Bickford because I get to be with my buddies.   I  learn new things about them and about how they grew up.  Both of my buddies lived during World War II. By the stories they've told me,  it was a rough time.  They've told me they were very very scared at that point.  They also lived during the Great Depression and they said it was a very sad time.  It makes me very thankful for what I have today. When you leave you will be wishing you'd spend more time with them and will be wanting to come back. --Nataly, age 11

In other news:

  • On December 8th we'll wrap up our fall outreach programs with Bhutanese and Latino Christmas parties to celebrate the kids' and adults' accomplishments. The parties provide another great chance to share Jesus.  Pray for God to prepare our friends' hearts to hear and believe the great news of His incarnation!
  • The Bhutanese and Latino Leaders In Training will spend the night at the Great Wolf Lodge this weekend to celebrate their hard work and effort during the semester.

Prayer needs:

  • Several families we know through our outreach programs are in need of work.  Pray for God to provide for them.
  • Please pray for a particular family to be geographically reunited before Christmas.
  • Please pray that Bhutanese Teens club would be a place where student-to-student and student-to-leader relationships are characterized by deep mutual respect and trust.  

Current needs:

  • The Bhutanese and Latino LIT programs need a small group (or groups) to purchase pre-packaged, healthy, after-school snacks for the kids.  We would be blessed to receive a couple months worth of snacks.  Please contact Megan at meganm@missionadelante.org.
  • Teen Bibles and devotionals for Teens Adelante. Please contact Brooke at brookec@missionadelante.org for specifics.

Upcoming dates:

  • Latino Christmas Party: Saturday, December 8 @ 5:00  Bethany Community Center, 1120 Central Avenue, Kansas City, KS 66102
  • Bhutanese Christmas Party: Saturday, December 8 @ 5:00  First Baptist Church of Kansas City, 2900 Minnesota Avenue, Kansas City, KS 66102

One God, Many Cultures

Written by Hannah Hume, Bhutanese Outreach Intern

I was visiting one of my Bhutanese friends last week when she asked me to teach her how to pray to Jesus. So we talked a little bit about what prayer is, and then I encouraged her to try it for herself. She was nervous to try praying in English, so I urged her to pray in Nepali. Shocked, she looked at me and asked “Jesus knows Nepali?”  

It’s fun to imagine heaven and the multitude of cultures from all around the Earth that will partake in extravagantly worshiping our Lord.  Revelation 5:9 declares of Jesus, “

You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.”  Will we be seated in pews, or on rugs on the floor?  Will we understand the speech in each language we hear?  Will there be electric guitars and drums, or violins, or an organ? Maybe all of the above!

To see the way that other cultures worship can sometimes seem odd or even make us uncomfortable. A few weeks ago, most of the Mission Adelante staff and a number of volunteers attended the Christian Community Development Association Annual Conference. While there, we were blessed to worship Jesus with some Native American brothers and sisters who have a worship style that's very different than we've ever experienced. They wore brightly colored traditional clothing, danced, beat drums and chanted. After the dancing was done, one of the dancers explained that with every step of the dance prayers were being offered to God for the Native American people to come to know Jesus. This seemed odd to me. However, 

this is the most natural way

for the Native American people to pray to and connect with God.

Mission Adelante loves to see people worship the one true God within their own culture, in a way that makes sense to them. We constantly consider how to share the Gospel and and how to show what it means to follow Jesus within the context of their lives and norms--becoming a Christian doesn't require one to become an American first. We're learning as we go--it's for this reason that we continue to made changes to our programs. For example, the Bhutanese Teens used to sing English worship songs while seated in chairs arranged in rows. However, now when we congregate each Tuesday evening, we gather around in a circle, seated on Nepali rugs, and sing “Yeshu Bhajans” or "Jesus songs" in the Nepali language. It's an atmosphere that's just more naturally conducive for Bhutanese people to worship.

Won’t it be a beautiful sight to behold when every tribe, nation and tongue worships Jesus together in heaven? Imagine all the colors, the motion, and the noise! It's going to be beyond our imaginations, and its going to represent the vast creativity and beauty of God. Until then, we want to paint a picture of that heavenly kingdom on Earth each time we tell Bhutanese, Latino, and American girls and boys that “God created you just the way you are, and he wants you to worship Him just the way you are”.

In other news:

  • Two Bhutanese ESL classes are taking field trips to local pharmacies. These field trips strengthen the relationships between students and their American conversation partners, and can really help students take better care of their families health needs.

Prayer needs:

  • Many of our new volunteers are visiting the homes of the students that they work with for the first time. Pray for God’s presence, wisdom, and love to be poured out during these friendly visits.

Current needs:

  • The weather has changed! We are in need of cold-weather clothing for the whole family to stock our resource center.  The resource center is also low on household items such as pots and pans, dishes and cups, small and large appliances, etcetera.  Please contact Molly Merrick at mollym@missionadelante.org to set up a time to drop-off your donation.  Please help us out by not leaving donations inside or outside our facility.  Thanks!
  • The kids in our Kids Club are growing up and we need some board games to entertain older kids on Tuesday nights.  Contact Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.org for more information, or if you have some games to donate.

Important dates:

  • Tuesday, October 23/Thursdays, October 18 & 25:Ever wondered what goes on here on a typical evening of programming?  Come on up on a observation night and find out!  Tuesday evenings are Bhutanese outreach, Thursday evenings are Latino outreach.  Come to 22 S. 18th Street, Kansas City, KS 66102 between 6:30 and 8:30.
  • Saturday, November 17, 3-6:30 p.m.: Mission Adelante Staff House Parties
    • Jarrett & Kristen Meek, Molly Merrick: 251 N. 15th Street
    • Jason & Megan Schoff, Megan McDermott: 410 N. 15th Street
    • David & Brooke Coon: 245 N. 17th Street
    • David & Holly Stetler, Drew Hammond: 438 N. 17th Street
    • Drew & Lauren Timberlake, Kristen Maxwell: 706 N. 17th Street
    • Garett & Jenny Dunn, Hannah Hume: 335 N. 15th Street
      All homes are in Kansas City, KS 66102.  RSVP is not necessary.