kids

New Refugee Ministry Pilots at Mission Adelante

Our new English Club for people from all places launched on May 30!

Our new English Club for people from all places launched on May 30!

by Jarrett Meek, Founder/Pastor/Executive Director

The end of one season often signals the beginning of another.  As Mission Adelante celebrated the winding down of seven beautiful years of ministry specifically with the Bhutanese, new doors were beginning to open for a broader ministry with refugees from all places in our neighborhood.  A meeting with Catholic Charities underlined the ongoing need for complementary refugee services that go beyond the initial three-month resettlement window.  Relationships with key people from several refugee communities including Bhutanese, Chin, Karen, Karenni, Iraqi, and Syrian, confirmed once again the deep desire our new neighbors have for friendship and their need for assistance with practical matters related to integrating in their new context.  An ESL class that we taught for adults, in partnership with refugee and immigrant students at Schlagle High School, highlighted the potential and passion that exists in youth from all places.  In so many ways it seems the Lord is leading us to press into our role and identity as a ministry with immigrants and refugees from ALL PLACES!

This summer we will be pressing further into our purpose to "love people from all places" by experimenting with two new initiatives that are open to all refugees and immigrants; an English Club for adults and a Refugee Kids Club.  These two initiatives launched on Tuesday night with several exciting highlights!

Our English Club Pilot, led by Lena Chan, is an informal, activity-based ESL program.  Participants practice their English and build friendships as they enjoy cooking, playing games, talking about health-related issues, and address practical issues that may arise in their everyday lives.  It is a combination of fun, relationships, and English-learning in a social environment, rather than an academic one.  Our initial group of 15 English Club students came from countries including Thailand, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Mexico.

English Club participants practice English as they enjoy a game of Jenga.

English Club participants practice English as they enjoy a game of Jenga.

Our Refugee Kids Club Pilot is led by Laxmi Gurung, a refugee from Nepal and Mission Adelante's newest Staff Apprentice.  It is so beautiful to see the fruit of many years of different people investing in Laxmi's life being reproduced now in her own desire to invest in the lives of others.  In fact, the volunteer team Laxmi leads includes four other youth from Nepal who once participated in our Bhutanese Kids Club, among others. It is a truly multicultural team in which the fruits of long-term disciple-making are being harvested in the multiplication of leaders who are now sharing Christ with others.  

Laxmi Gurung with her amazing team of volunteers for Refugee Kids Club

Laxmi Gurung with her amazing team of volunteers for Refugee Kids Club

It is an exciting new season at Mission Adelante with exciting challenges and big opportunities!  Please pray with us as we take these next steps in exploring ministry with refugees from all places in our neighborhood!

Placing Books into the Hands of Kids

Written by Megan McDermott

Can you remember the very first book that you fell in love with? It was that book with the well-worn cover and the dog-eared pages that you read over and over.  For me, it was The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein.  I remember being so touched by the love that the tree had for her “boy.”  Over the years, wandering through book stores, I have often stumbled upon this familiar childhood memory.  To this day, I love sitting down and reading that book.  I even had the opportunity to read it to a few of the girls that I disciple, sharing the love of my favorite book with them.

For many of the kids in our community the presence of books in the home is not a reality.   According to Susan Neuman in Changing the Odds for Children at Risk, 2009, "In middle class neighborhoods there are about thirteen book titles for every child. By contrast, in neighborhoods of lower socioeconomic status, there is only one book title for every 300 children."

How do we address the lack of literature in the homes of our children?  At Mission Adelante, we believe that urban, multicultural ministry requires fresh ideas and new approaches.  We promote a culture of innovation that encourages creative solutions for unique circumstances.  A fresh idea took root as we thought about how get books in to the homes of the children.

Last Wednesday we had our first book distribution!  We decided to start small with our Leaders in Training and focus on getting three books into the hands of each of the thirty kids.  It was so much fun to watch the kids dig through the bins of books, choosing titles that spoke to them.  From Diary of a Wimpy Kid to a Jackie Robinson biography, the books that we had collected went directly into the hands of the children.  We are excited about our next book distribution in December to bless all one hundred of the children that attend our Outreach Bible Studies.  Our hope is that, just as The Giving Tree was the first step in my love of literature, the children of our community will develop a passion for reading.  After all, don’t we all deserve to find that one book that touches our heart and instantly transports us back to our childhood?  If you would like to provide gently-used children's books in the Kindergarten through sixth grade reading level range for distribution, please visit http://www.missionadelante.org/serviceprojects/ for more information.

In other news:

  • Some of our staff members participated with our Bhutanese friends recently in a popular Nepali festival during which they go house-to-house caroling. Several Bhutanese friends expressed how special it was for them to see Americans learning about and participating with them in their Nepali traditions.
  • Our level 1 Latino ESL class has a record number of students and volunteers participating this trimester!

Prayer needs:

  • Please pray for two marriages in our Latino community that are currently going through significant struggles.
  • Please pray for many Bhutanese English students who suffer from chronic pain.
  • Pray for the Holy Spirit's leading as we choose goals and plan for 2015.

Current needs:

  • Compact fluorescent light bulbs for use in our facility. Contact sarahw@missionadelante.org
  • A Bhutanese family from our community is in need of a crib for their new son. If you are able to provide a crib, please contact Drew Hammond at drewh@missionadelante.org.
  • Bhutanese LIT is still in need of a few more Thursday mentors.  If you would like more information contact Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.org.
  • LIT is in need of individually packed, healthy snacks. Please contact Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.org.

Important dates:

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

The God at Work in the Lives of our Friends

Written by Holly Stetler

Most of us know the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, Daniel's friends who found themselves under the rule and authority of King Nebuchanezzer. The three men refused to bow down to an idol made by the king and were about to face their death in a fiery furnace because of it. They refused because they knew and worshiped the one true God that had recently helped them become some of the strongest and smartest men in the king's household. They served King Nebuchanezzer but they were not going to disobey their true king by abandoning the most important commandment. This was the story we shared with our friends at kids club this Tuesday and it was amazing to share what the power of the one true God helped these friends overcome: death!

Sometimes it is hard to get through to kids. Actually, let me rephrase that. It is ALWAYS hard to get through to kids. This story is about three friends who literally walked around in fire and did not even get burned! This story shows us the infinite power of God and how well he cares for those who follow him! However, most of the kids hearing the story didn't seem to be amazed! They recited the story back to me, and most said they probably would have tried to run away if this had happened to them, but it was just a story to them.

I felt discouraged in the moment, but I’m thankful that these aren’t just stories. I’m thankful that God is both powerful and loving. I’m thankful that every week I have a moment here and a moment there with my little friends to share about his unending love. I’m thankful that just like God's intervention on behalf of Daniel’s friends, he is the one who must, too, intervene in the lives of my little friends. I want them to know our Lord and Savior. I want them to feel his unending love and know the hope he brings even when things seem impossible.

I was humbled, and remembered that it is not me, but the Holy Spirit, who will pierce their hearts. I remembered that we are called to communicate the gospel with clarity and compassion through our words and our lives and let God do the rest. Will you pray with me that these children will know his truth? That one day they will hear this story and be in awe that the almighty God loves, cares for and protects his children? May He continue to break through to their hearts!

In other news:

  • Megan and Iris, one of our summer interns, traveled to the CCDA (Christian Community Development Association) National Conference last week in North Carolina.   It was a great time of refreshment, networking, and growth.
  • Bhutanese ESL students showed Tuesday night that they are mastering the citizenship material. We are thankful for the many volunteers who have invested in their learning and pray each student will eventually reach his or her goal of passing the citizenship exam interview.

Current needs:

  • We are looking for an affordable and reliable snow-removal service to plow our parking lot this winter.  If you have any recommendations, please email Sarah at sarahw@missionadelante.org.
  • The Bhutanese Leaders in Training program is looking for Thursday mentors!  We need 3 more people to help with homework and enrichment activities from 4:00-6:15pm on Thursdays!  To come check it out, contact Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.org.
  • A Bhutanese family from our community recently moved and their new house lacks a refrigerator. If you are able to provide a refrigerator, please contact Drew Hammond at drewh@missionadelante.org.

Important dates:

  • Get-acquainted Days: Tuesdays, October 14 & 21 (Bhutanese)/Thursdays, October 16 & 23, 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!  Come on up to 22 S. 18th Street, Kansas City, KS 66102.

Where Do I Belong?

Written by Megan McDermott, Latino Children's Ministry Director

When you travel the streets of Kansas City, KS, the diversity of cultures that you encounter is pretty remarkable.  Over the years, as we have grown stronger in our relationships with the families of our community, we have received the precious gift of being let into the struggles that our friends face. The children, in particular,  are often caught between the many cultures that surround them, always trying to fit in but never quite feeling like they belong anywhere.  As one teen expressed to me,

"The only place I feel like I can really be myself is around other kids that understand the 

feeling of not fitting in anywhere."

Over the past two years, as the Latino and Bhutanese Leaders in Training  (LIT) programs have blossomed, we have placed a strong emphasis on encouraging the children from the two cultural backgrounds to become friends and to simply have fun together.  We feel so strongly about it because we recognize that all of our children are constantly struggling to find a place where they can fit in.  We desire to offer them not just a place, but a community where they can truly feel accepted and affirmed for who they are in Christ.  

Last Friday, we got to live this out in a very dynamic and fun way! We took all thirty of our LIT kids and fifteen volunteers on a field trip to Science City and Zonkers as a reward for all of their hard work.  It was encouraging to observe all of the children learning together, playing together, and laughing together. Discipling and loving the future leaders of our community takes time, diligence, and compassion. We believe that the Lord has specifically chosen each and every one of these unique children to effect change in their community. 

What a privilege it is to be part of God's amazing plan for this community through the children we pray will

 one day lead it!    

Prayer needs:

  • Pray for the Bhutanese ESL volunteers and teachers as we meet next Tuesday and talk over literacy ideas in an attempt to bridge the literacy gap in the community.
  • Please continue to pray for the Adelante Thrift site search process. We are interviewing two new realtors in the next week and pray that the right person partners with us to move forward with the search and selection.

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 City, KS66102). Don’t miss this chance to learn about and celebrate the rich culture of the Bhutanese Refugee community!

A "Year of Breakthrough"

Written by Kristen Maxwell, Bhutanese Children's Ministry Director

A few weeks ago, I had a chance to go on a prayer and planning retreat.  It gave me a chance to slow down and take time to listen to the Lord.  During my time away I heard from the Lord that this year would be a "Year of Breakthrough" for our after school leadership and character development program, Leaders in Training.  As I returned from the retreat and began to dive deeper in to what the Lord was saying, I felt challenged by a verse in the book of Isaiah.  

“But forget all that—

    it is nothing compared to what I am going to do.

For I am about to do something new.

    See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?

I will make a pathway through the wilderness.

    I will create rivers in the dry wasteland."

Isaiah 43:18-19 (NLT)

Will you join me in praying this verse over our 30 Latino and Bhutanese Leaders in Training for the 2013-2014 school year?  Will you pray with us that the Lord would help them to see the new things He is doing, and point them in the right direction?  Pray that the Lord would give them growth and confidence in their academic life, and speak to them about their walk with Him.  

Will you pray for the volunteers and staff that have the joy of loving on these kids every day?  Would you pray that we would not stick to old ways, but would eagerly follow the new ways that the Lord is leading us?  Would you pray for renewal in the lives of the LIT staff, mentors and kids?

We are currently looking for some more mentors to lock arms with us and lead the leaders that the Lord is raising up in our community.  If you are interested in learning more about how to help, contact Megan McDermott (Latino LIT) at

meganm@missionadelante.org

or Kristen Maxwell (Bhutanese LIT) at 

Kristenm@missionadelante.

org

.

In other news:

  • Congratulations to Jenny & Garett Dunn on the birth of their first child, Rowen Matthew, on Saturday, August 31!  He was healthy, weighing 8 pounds, 9 ounces and measuring 20 inches long.  Mom and baby are doing great!
  • Four of our staff members, six immigrant leaders, and one volunteer will be in New Orleans until Sunday for the CCDA conference.  It’s a tremendous opportunity to learn about, and network with others immersed in, Christian community development.  Pray for this team to grow together and bring home new vision.

Prayer needs:

  • Pray for our Congress as they return from legislative break to sort through important issues like Syria and immigration reform.
  • Pray for our LIT program as we kick off over the next week and a half.

Current needs:

  • Want to hang out with some fun kids and share Jesús in a meaningful way? We are looking for 3-4 volunteers for our Outreach Bible Study on Thursdays from 6:30-9.  Please contact Megan if you are interested atmeganm@missionadelante.org.
  • Our Bhutanese Kids Outreach is looking for a few new friends!  We are in need of 6-7 mentors to walk with kids at part of our Outreach Bible Study on Tuesday nights from 6:30-9:00pm.  If you are interested in learning more please contact Kristen at kristenm@missionadelante.org.
  • We need some Rubbermaid-type storage tubs to store clothing in our Resource Center. Please contact Molly at mollym@missionadelante.org if you’d like to help.

Important dates:

  • Volunteer Orientation & Training: Saturday, September 21, 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, September 23, 6:30 p.m. We encourage everyone that will be volunteering with us during our fall trimester to attend so we can prepare for a great launch. 
  • Fall trimester programs launch: Week of September 23

Generosity Rises to Meet our God-Sized Backpack Goal!

Written by Kristen Maxwell, Bhutanese Children's Ministry Director, and Megan McDermott, Latino Children's Ministry Director

One of the greatest blessings of doing what we do, is getting to watch the community of believers in Kansas City come together around a common cause.  This past week, we got to see that in a big way!  Around a month and a half ago, we set a God-sized goal of collecting 190 filled backpacks to outfit our kids and teens as they head back to school.  The Lord provided in a mighty way through twenty-five different individuals, families, and churches from all over the Kansas City area.  Thank you to those that contributed through prayers, giving, and spreading the word.  We hope you enjoy some pictures of the fun that we had last week.  

In other news:

  • Last week we concluded our first summer internship for four emerging leaders from our own neighborhood!  It was a huge success as we saw them grow in exciting ways!
  • Conversation partners from Bhutanese ESL class visited student homes during the last week of class. The students loved it, and volunteers got a better picture of what life is like for refugee families!
  • Party, party, party!!  On Sunday afternoon we got a beautiful dose of sharing life at Wyandotte Lake as our Bhutanese and Latino ministries both held summer parties, complete with food, awards, songs and even some dancing!
  • Frank and Yanelis, our partners from the RAICES ministry in Cuba, spent a good portion of the summer in Kansas City with Mission Adelante, learning and sharing from their experiences. They’re now back in Cuba ready to engage with their work there.  We’re missing them!
  • Serving together!  The Lord is creating a new “we” in the neighborhood as new, community-driven leadership teams are forming for all of our Latino ministry programs.
  • We are thankful for all of the community partners who are working with us to gather data for the medical clinic. This information is helping us form a clinic that remains true to the vision of a clinic that is culturally accessible and community owned.

Prayer needs:

  • As we prepare for next trimester, please pray for guidance from the Holy Spirit as to what changes need to be made in our programs to better accommodate the needs of our community.
  • Please pray for God to bring forth volunteers for our Leaders In Training ministry.
  • Please pray for our Congressmen, on break from Washington, to hear our calls for compassionate immigration reform.
  • Please pray for Adelante Thrift as we continue searching for the right location.

Current needs:

  • We're in the process of setting up a brand new library for the Leaders in Training (LIT) students, and hoping to have it finished by the first week of September. Do you know of someone that would be interested in helping to paint some bookshelves or maybe even buy some bean bags or decorations to make it cozy? Please contact Megan at meganm@missionadelante.org.
  • Volunteers for our Leaders In Training program, after school on Mondays, Wednesday and Thursdays beginning on September 11th, and our Tuesday night Kids Club program beginning September 24th.  If you are interested in more information please email Kristen at kristenm@missionadelante.org.

Mommy & Me ESL classes teach pre-reading skills

by Lauren Timberlake, Bhutanese ESL Director

I get excited when kids read. Board books, picture books, chapter books, audio books-- they are doors to all kinds of possibilities in life. Refugee kids have some large obstacles to overcome when reading. English is not their first language, so learning to read is a challenge. Also, refugee parents have endured years of turmoil, had little access to education, and now work hard to provide for their families. This leaves little time or attention for recreational reading. Many times, there are very few books in a refugee home. Although they receive lots of love at home, refugee kids don’t spend a lot of time reading with their families. Often, these kids are behind when they start school and can feel frustrated.

This summer, we offered a Mommy & Me workshop to our Bhutanese ESL students. Several mothers and grandmothers of young children participated. Rachel Pierce, a preschool teacher and close friend to several refugee families, led the group in a typical preschool storytime. There was circle time, read alouds, finger-plays, and several stations with early literacy activities. Moms helped their children to sort by color, “fish” for picture cards, put together puzzles, and look at books together.

We rarely get to offer programming to  the smallest children in the Bhutanese community, and everyone really enjoyed it. A local organization donated board books to send home with each family, so they can begin reading or looking at books together at home.

Please pray for the educational needs of the Bhutanese community and other refugee groups in Kansas City. Pray that children have access to books, mentors who challenge them to read, and teachers who equip them with the skills they need to pursue further education or job training after high school.

In other news

  • Two members of the Raices team along with two other Cubans led a seminar on Christianity in Cuba last Saturday. It was the first time to share publicly in English for two of them, and they did great! Around 40 people attended the event.
  • God used friends, volunteers and partner churches to provide backpacks for all of the children and teens of Mission Adelante.  They will go back to school with the supplies to start this year right!

Prayer Requests

  • Pray for our four interns and two Cuban guests who finish their summer with us this week and transition back to Cuba or to school and family.  Pray for their confidence as they return to normal life.
  • Pray we finish our trimesters strong and that the Lord would give us guidance as we seek Him for direction for our fall trimesters

Important Dates

Summer Parties

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

.

  • The Latino party begins at 5:00 with a potluck meal, awards and a cultural program.  It will be in the "Beach Shelter." Turn right after passing shelter #6.
  • The Bhutanese party begins around 4:00 and will have a potluck meal, awards and a cultural program in shelter #6.

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.

Breaking Bread Together

Written by Kristen Maxwell, Bhutanese Children's Ministry Director

Bhutanese & Latino LIT students on a field trip to Union Station

Bhutanese & Latino LIT students on a field trip to Union Station

The Fall 2012 trimester brought another exciting enhancement to the Bhutanese Outreach with the launch of our Leaders in Training program.   It is hard to believe that we already have one trimester behind us and are a few weeks in to our second trimester.  It has been such a joy to add these 11 young leaders to the ranks of the already-existing Latino Leaders In Training program.  Both programs meet three afternoons a week, but have different formats because the two groups of kids have different sets of needs.  Wednesdays, though, have become quite the highlight of each week.  On Wednesdays we gather to eat.  

Each Wednesday afternoon in the

Mission Adelante

 Kids' Room, something beautiful takes place; a feast reflecting what heaven will look like.  The13 Latino LIT kids and the 11 Bhutanese LIT kids come together for a meal with their mentors.  Each group provides a main dish, fruit or vegetable, and dessert.  The menu is always a surprise, and we've come to expect anything from spaghetti or pizza to flautas or tacos to chow mien or curried potatoes.  The parents in our communities take turns providing the dishes, which is something that their kids usually love.  

It has been beautiful to watch the kids' relationships grow by way of sharing meals with one other.  Foods that may have once looked foreign and weird are now more familiar.  Common ground has been found in a fondness for sweet rice; who knew that Kheer and Arroz con Leche were that similar?  In a neighborhood where Latino people and Bhutanese people daily pass each other on the street without much interaction, the Lord has made a way for kids from these two cultures to come together every week to learn about His creative nature by learning about the distinct people and cultures He created.  

Won't you join us in praying for the trimester of LIT that is underway?  Pray that our kids would finish strong and continue to grow in relationship with each other and the Lord.

In other news:

  • The Bhutanese Outreach was recently given a generous gift of Nepali Bibles and Nepali language Jesus Film DVDs to share with our Nepali speaking Bhutanese friends who want to know more about Jesus in their native language.
  • Four teenage Bhutanese boys have taken on volunteer roles in setting up for Teens Club each week and helping with Transportation Team prep work. It’s exciting to see teens serving their own community and growing in leadership. Please pray that our Bhutanese friends would take increased ownership of the ministry and values of Mission Adelante as the trimester proceeds.

Prayer needs:

  • Please pray for Jesus, the father of one of our Latino church members, who has been hospitalized with various health issues.
  • Please pray for one of our kids that is going through a difficult separation from his family. Pray for peace, protection, and healing.
  • Please pray for our Bhutanese friends who recently suffered a break-in and theft at their newly opened Asian convenience store.
  • One of the families in our community lost an uncle this past week.  Pray for peace, and for moments for us to speak truth and love into their lives.

Current needs:

  • We are looking for a volunteer who is skilled in welding and would be interested in helping serve on a Saturday afternoon.  Please contact David Stetler at davids@missionadelante.org.
  • Three sofas have been requested through our Resource Center. We also need diapers sizes 2-5, wipes, and pull-ups in all sizes. Please contact Molly Merrick at mollym@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
  • Expo dry-erase markers for use in the Bhutanese Kids Programs. Please contact Kristen at kristenm@missionadelante.org.

Important dates:

  • Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Dinner: March 2 at Lauren Timberlake's house. Please contact Jenny Dunn for more details at jennyd@missionadelante.org
  • 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!

Future Leaders

The Leaders In Training Boys

At Leaders in Training (LIT) every child has different skills to develop, abilities to grow and dreams to awaken.  Each day is filled with a combination of creative enrichment, academic learning and the development of social skills, preparing them for a future of hope and towards dreams bigger than what they thought they could become.

"The community is very excited about this new program and the potential that it brings the young people. We hope to see more kids learning the right things through the LIT program."  says Ran Poudel (LIT father and community leader).

Kumar Pokrel (LIT father and community leader) says, "I'm very excited about this program and my child is learning a lot.   He is becoming more cooperative and responsible and he is growing in character and learning to respect others more and more."

We believe that LIT is an incredibly significant investment and that the lives of these kids have so much capacity for positive influence with their peers.  We are so excited to see these kids grow, excel and realize their full potential to impact their community, neighborhood and someday the world!

I cannot wait to watch this happen!

Future Leaders!    "I am waiting for that day" - mother of LIT student

Bhutanese and Latino LIT students at Union Station

In other news:

  • The Bhutanese and Latino LIT (Leaders in Training) programs took their first joint field trip yesterday to Science City and Zonkers! Having earned the field trip as a reward for their hard work and demonstration of leadership, the students really enjoyed themselves!
  • Bhutanese Teens Club is going very well after changing its format at the beginning of this trimester. Our time together now includes a contextualized worship time in Nepali, thanks to our new music volunteer Janga Chhetri, that the students love!
  • We celebrated our ministry to Cuba as a congregation this past Sunday at our Latino church service.  Yanelis, the leader of the Raices discipling ministry in Cuba, is in Kansas City for a few weeks. She shared testimony of how God is at work there. It gave us a wonderful opportunity to praise him together, and for our community to see their prayers at work.
  • Teens Adelante has formed a Teen Leadership Team of 5 Latino teenagers committed to growing in their leadership and their love for their peers. We’re excited to see the teens begin to shape the direction of youth ministry in KCK.

Prayer needs:

  • Please pray for the new Teens Adelante Leadership Team and their spiritual growth and vision for their peers.
  • Please pray for a pre-adolescent boy in our community who is falling into destructive behaviors and patterns.  Ask the Lord to supply wisdom and patience to his family.
  • Pray daily for meetings, meals, and celebrations taking place among our Latino community that represent discipleship.  Ask God to give teachable moment this very day to us and our disciples.  

Current needs:

  • We know you have them!!  Used I-Pods and Cell phones by October 18 for the RAICES ministry in Cuba!  Please contact Jarrett Meek at jarrettm@missionadelante.org
  • 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!

Important dates:

  • Tuesdays, October 16 & 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.

              The Difference a Dude Can Make

              Written by Kristen Maxwell, Bhutanese Children's Ministry Director


              I was recently visiting some of our neighborhood KCK elementary schools, meeting teachers in preparation for the launch of the Bhutanese Leader in Training program.  As I talked with one of the teachers, we got on the topic of an LIT kid who had been in her class a few years earlier.  She talked about what an amazing transformation she had seen in the life of this boy since then. 

              For the purpose of this story we will call this young man John.  John was new to the country.  His family was in crisis mode, trying to figure out which way was up.  His father was working all the time, leaving his mother to take care of him and his four siblings.  John started to make friends in the apartment complex where he lived.  These friends were considerably older than him and had visible ties to gang activity.  We were worried about John.


              John’s attitude at school, home and Kids Club became increasingly negative.  He wanted to be like his older friends, his friends that were in the gang.  Around this time Drew Hammond and Tyler McCommons became the mentors for John’s Kids Club group which included 4th to 6th grade boys.  Drew and Tyler started investing in John.  They started spending time with him outside of Kids Club, hanging out at his house, and taking him places; becoming like big brothers to John and a few of his other Bhutanese friends.


              John began to walk with new confidence, a confidence found in the knowledge that Tyler and Drew believed in him and expected great things from him.  Hanging out with his old “friends” didn’t seem so cool anymore.  I am certain that the Lord used Tyler and Drew to change the direction of John’s life.  John is now a bright spot in our Tuesday night program, focused on becoming a leader in our LIT program, and helping the younger Kids Club kids.  

              There are countless young men in our community that could benefit from a relationship like the one Drew and Tyler have with John.  If you are a male, would you consider being a mentor to some of our boys?  Would you consider doing life with them, showing them how to walk in the way of Jesus, and how to be a man of God?  A couple of hours a week could make a world of difference in the life of a young man.  If you would like more information about getting involved please contact Megan McDermott (meganm@missionadelante.org) or Kristen Maxwell (kristenm@missionadelante.org).

              In other news:

              • A few Latino teens from our community that are interested in pursuing college attended their first "Latinos of Tomorrow" meeting. The mission of Latinos of Tomorrow is to provide leadership learning opportunities in education advancement, career development and civic involvement.  We look forward to encouraging our teens to learn the skills they need to apply for college admission.
              • A big "Thank You" to Cathy Claudell, Bhutanese Nursery volunteer, for outfitting our nursery with fun and engaging toys!  The nursery is used on Tuesday nights by the children and grandchildren of many of our English class participants who would not be able to attend if it were not available.
              Prayer needs:
              • Our Bhutanese Leaders in Training will finish their first full week today!  Praise God with us for a full, successful, and fun first week!
              • Thank God with us for our faithful transportation volunteers. They serve our community in such an important way. The Bhutanese ESL, kids and teens programs wouldn’t happen without them!
              Other needs:
              Important dates:
              • Staff Open Houses--Saturday, November 17, 3:00 to 6:30 p.m. Come to our neighborhood and spend the afternoon with us!

              Partnership for the Benefit of our Kids

              Written by Megan McDermott, Latino Children's Ministry Director

              Do you remember being asked as a child what you wanted to be when you grew up?  I remember that for me, that question had any number of answers, depending on the day.  Many of us had been told, "You can be anything you want to be!"

              We can't assume the same for the kids we serve here in urban Kansas City, Kansas.  They may not approach the question of what they want to be and do with the same invincible sense of possibility that we did.  Many are exposed at a very young age to gangs, peer pressure, abuse, temptation to compromise their purity, and simply trying to fit in among the variety of cultures represented here.  Having become acquainted with many harsh realities of life at such a young age can rob them of their innocent enthusiasm to dream big, or to dream at all.

              As we purpose to pour into the young leaders in our community by coming alongside them as they grow in their academic and character strengths, we recognize the absolute importance of the role the local public schools play. We have been working very hard these past four years to establish strong connections with the faculty at our neighborhood schools. We currently have active partnerships with ten different schools.  Kristen Maxwell (Bhutanese Children's Ministry Director) and I 

              have been warmly accepted into many of these schools to share about Mission Adelante, the cultural concerns our kids face, and how we can better come alongside the teachers and administrators that fight so hard for the kids we love.

               Two weeks ago,

               Kristen and I

              were given a few minutes to share with the Central Middle School faculty the beautiful things that the Lord is doing in some of their students' lives through LIT. 

              As we look toward the future, I am excited to see our relationships with public school administrators and faculty grow stronger and deeper. We truly believe that the kids that we serve are the future leaders of our community.  Investing deeply in them now will produce the fruit of future Christian leaders that not only love the Lord but desire to see others come to love Him as well.

              In other news:

              • We had a great turnout and a great time at our Volunteer Orientation on Saturday morning.  We're so grateful for the Lord's provision of volunteers trimester after trimester.
              • The leaders of the Kansas City Bhutanese community gathered together over the weekend to dream about what it would look like to work together on future projects.
              • The Latino LIT (Leaders in Training) program launched this school year's program last week, and today is the very first day of Bhutanese LIT! Both groups are excited to begin growing together as a family, as they will by spending three afternoons a week together!
              • A BIG thank you to Jarion Srack and her small group from Mill Creek Community Church for providing three months of snacks for Leaders in Training kids!
              • If you'll be worshiping at Redeemer Fellowship this Sunday morning, stop by Mission Adelante's table at the LoveKC Fair and say hi!  LoveKC is a website launched by Redeemer Fellowship earlier this year to connect people and organizations to improve our city.

              Prayer needs:

              • We are engaging with ESL students to help them take on more leadership roles this trimester. Please pray for clear communication and good participation from our immigrant friends!
              • Bhutanese Kids Club is taking on a whole new format and a new curriculum!  Please pray for a smooth transition for our mentors and kids.
              • Pray for the Lord's guidance as all of our outreach programs get up and running this week for our Fall Trimester. Pray that He receives the glory in everything that we do!

              Current needs:

              • A folding card table and 4 folding chairs for use by the Bhutanese Leaders in Training.  Contact Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.orgif you can provide one.
              • Inexpensive floor lamps and extension cords to for Bhutanese Teens Club.  Contact Hannah Hume at hannahh@missionadelante.org for additional information.
              • Three volunteers to serve at Kids Adelante each Thursday evening through December 6.  Please contact Megan McDermott at meganm@missionadelante.org for more information.
              • Volunteers for Tuesday or Wednesday afternoons/early evening to mentor our Latino Leaders in Training kids.  Please contact Megan McDermott at meganm@missionadelante.org for more information.
              • Thirty custom-printed t-shirts for our Leaders in Training to wear on field trips.  With an increased focus on enrichment this year we will be spending many afternoons out in the community!  Matching t-shirts will encourage a sense of unity, and will help us easily identify our kids in public places. Please contact Megan McDermott at meganm@missionadelante.org or Kristen Maxwell at kristenm@missionadelante.org if you or someone you know would like to provide these shirts!

              Important dates:

              • Fall trimester launch: Latino Programs--Tonight! September 13, 6:30 p.m.