West Texas District Tour, from Dallas to Dumas – Amazing Things Happening!


Who could have ever imagined the ministry we would find in W. Texas!
Who could have ever imagined the ministry we would find in W. Texas!
Connie with a new friend "Mona" whose family comes from Somalia.
Connie with a new friend “Mona” whose family comes from Somalia.

We just had to take a moment to share about the West Texas District Tour,  to-date.  We have been so very blessed.  Home assignment this year started out with a bang on the L.A. District, and now here in W. Texas, the blessings have just continued to flow.

God has taken us from small groups in quiet towns like Nocona (very similar to Eagle Point, Oregon – where we grew up) to larger cities like Lubbock.  Everywhere we have gone, the hospitality, warm welcoming churches, and great Texas cooking has been tops!

Todd with men from the Somalia Community Center.
Todd with men from the Somalia Community Center.

But, we just have to share quickly in this update about the Cactus Nazarene Ministry Center located in Cactus, Texas.  Last Saturday we thought we had traveled through a time warp as we arrived in this small community in the panhandle of Texas, home to at least 17 different ethnicities (refugees) from areas like Myanmar (Burma), Sudan, Somalia, Guatemala (just to name a few).

 

Rev. Elda and husband Jose (Wally) Olivarez, our Nazarene Pastors at Cactus
Rev. Elda and husband Jose (Wally) Olivarez, our Nazarene Pastors at Cactus

 

Pator Elda and her husband Jose (Wally) Olivarez along with district missionaries Vito and Jenny Monteblanco, have had a vision for bringing the tangible love of Christ into this community and God is truly blessing their efforts.

Vito gives and orientation to Saturday's Volunteers.
Vito gives an orientation to Saturday’s Volunteers.

In just a few minutes, I was realizing that I needed my video equipment and team, as this is a story that just had to be told.  Together, the local churches of the West Texas District have been partnering with the Olivarezs and the Monteblancos, in establishing a church, buying land, and  building a community center that will be home to a medical ministry, social services, refugee support, and a host of other outreach ministries aimed at empowering these precious people who have sought refuge in the U.S. from political crisis abroad.

Jenny loves on one of the children at the Cactus Nazarene Ministry Center.
Jenny loves on one of the children at the Cactus Nazarene Ministry Center.

On Saturday, the Valley View Amarillo Church of the Nazarene along with others, donated literally a small warehouse full of supplies and a “free garage sale” was held where community members could come in and pick up necessities at no charge.  While we don’t have the official numbers (as we had to leave early for our next speaking engagement) I am sure that there were well over 200 visitors from the community.

Unloading donated supplies from Valley View Church.
Unloading donated supplies from Valley View Church.

We also had the privilege of meeting a man from South Sudan, who has felt a call and is working towards the process of beginning a pastoral course of study!

Wow…were we ever blessed!  We had no idea that after traveling home from Asia, we would be given the opportunity to join in ministering to the very people we serve in Asia! Unpacking boxes, sorting clothes, shoes, toys, and household goods, sharing a smile and just “spending time” with these precious people.

Some of the smaller visitors were getting  bit tired!
Some of the smaller visitors were getting bit tired!

Thank you to all who made this opportunity possible and to the W. Texas District for having the vision to be the tangible hands and feet of Christ right here in their home state.

The community began gathering for the "free garage sale."
The community began gathering for the “free garage sale.”

You can find out more about the Cactus Nazarene Ministry Center by visiting this LINK.

Well…we are off and running again in just a few minutes, headed to speak at yet another great W. Texas Church – The Refuge!

Thanks so much for your continued prayers!    Todd and Connie Lou

5 thoughts on “West Texas District Tour, from Dallas to Dumas – Amazing Things Happening!”

  1. Hi Todd and Connie, what a great article. Beautiful pictures! Jenni Montablanco told me that there were 300 people who attended and 8 ethnicities. She was thrilled you guys could be there.
    What a joy to work with you for the Kingdom!
    Nan Haworth

  2. I heard you two in Wichita Falls. You were TREMENDOUS! Thanks for this wonderful report. Ruth Davis

  3. Just came across this–thank you for sharing about our wonderful Cactus! God has great things in store!

  4. Jenni, we so loved the opportunity to visit you in Cactus. With your approval (even though I shot and edited the film on my iPhone) it is available for use as you would like!

    Blessings,
    Todd

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