***2019 Motto = Abide & Abound ***
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” Matthew 28:19
In February 1-5, 2019, I joined a team of seven pastors from the Little River Baptist Association, and Marty Dupree, our Director of Missions, on a vision trip to Cuba. This trip was guided by Tom Beam of Baptist on Mission. This was my first trip to Cuba and my first time to visit “Mi Campamento” (My Camp) outside of the city of Santa Clara in the Placetas province of Cuba. During this five-day vision trip, God began to speak to me and my friend Pastor Mark Howard of Kennebec Baptist Church about bringing a construction team back to Cuba. As we heard the vision for Mi Campamento, Mark and I could sense the great opportunity to use this site in central Cuba to train pastor and spread the gospel.
In Colossians 1:6, Paul wrote, “All over the world, this gospel is bearing fruit and grow-ing.” It was with this conviction that Pastor Mark and I led a joint team of ten people from Kennebec Baptist and Neill’s Creek Baptist to Mi Campamento November 15-22, 2019. For most members of our team, this was either their first time outside of the US or their first International Mission Trip. Our primary goal for the week was to help in the construction of a fellowship hall that will serve both as a dining facility but also as a large classroom space for training pastors.
We were blessed with temperatures in the 70’s-mid 80’s with a mix of clouds and sun with a gently breeze. The work was strenuous as we mixed concrete and pushed wheelbarrows with rock and sand. Along with our hard labor, the spirit of God was strong as we endeavored to work, “as unto the Lord.”
We also had the opportunity to divide our team on Sunday, November 17th for worship in the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Baptist Churches of Jatibonico. This time of worship with our Cuban brothers and sisters in Christ was a picture of heaven! We made memories and shared experiences together that will last a lifetime. As we returned home, our hearts are “joyfully giving thanks” (Col. 1:11- 12) for the gift of the delicious food, kind hospitality, warm comradery, and authentic compassion of the Cuban people. We have some tired bodies and sore muscles but our hearts are so very full of faith, hope, and love from our time in Cuba. Thank you to all who generously gave to make this trip possible for Howard Penny, Josh Andrews, Bartley Adams, Alex Adams, and myself.