By Brian Koonce
SAN VICENTE, El Salvador – El Salvadoran families are giving a big muchas gracias to Missouri Baptists after their homes were rebuilt through Mi Casa es Su Casa. So far, the Mi Casa Es Su Casa (My House is Your House) campaign has helped rebuild six El Salvadoran Baptists’ homes that were destroyed last year by Hurricane Ida.
Chris Atkinson, pastor, Centennial Baptist Church, Mexico, was part of a team that returned April 11 from a construction trip to San Vicente, a city about an hour’s drive east of the capital city of San Salvador.
“It was great to see the immediate benefit of someone getting to live in that new home,” he said. “I was also able to preach in San Vicente. God used our entire team, whether it was building the house or witnessing.”
Centennial is making plans to return to El Salvador in December.
Each home costs approximately $3,500. To date, the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) has raised $17,713 for Mi Casa es Su Casa. There are at least five more homes lined-up for construction, but MBC Executive Director David Tolliver said the MBC will continue to work until the Association of Baptists in El Salvador (ABES) says all the homes of Salvadoran Baptists have been rebuilt. There is no “goal” for the campaign. If more money than is necessary is raised, those funds will go toward the ongoing partnership between the MBC and ABES.
Several teams from Missouri churches already have been to San Vicente in 2010 to build the homes. They have two bedrooms, a small bathroom and an outside kitchen. Atkinson said each person who is going to live in the home puts in a lot of “sweat equity” into the project. It takes approximately one week for a Missouri team to complete each house.
“These houses are not fancy, but imagine the blessing they are to a person who has lost everything,” Tolliver said.
“Please pray about ways your church can participate in Mi Casa es Su Casa. This could mean a special offering, a Sunday School class ‘sponsoring’ a single home, or maybe a Vacation Bible School project. Regardless of how we raise the money, I am convinced that God brought us into the El Salvadoran partnership ‘… for such a time as this.’ It is my prayer that God would use us to bring glory to His name in the midst of tragedy.”
For more information, contact Mauricio Vargas at firstname.lastname@example.org or Rick Hedger at email@example.com. Bulletin inserts are available on the MBC’s website at www.mobaptist.org/micasa.