Philip and Bacilia Beisswenger - August 2017 Update
Greetings to you from Cobán in Jesus’ precious name!
Psalm 133 declares, “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in harmony!” Such harmony, explains the psalm, is like the dew of Mt. Hermon falling on Mt. Zion. As it turns out, snow-capped Mt. Hermon stands at Israel’s northern limits, whereas Mt. Zion is down south, near the desert. The message seems clear. Harmonious living isn’t just a local affair. Its blessings extend from north to south and vice versa.
A lot of “dew” has fallen upon Cobán in recent months. In April, a mission team from Toronto, Canada helped break ground for the theological training center at the Presbyterian Complex. Since then, one Presbyterian partner after another has descended, coming from Nashville, TN; Fairhope, AL; Charleston, SC; and Cincinnati, OH. They each brought a harmonious spirit, injecting enthusiasm and energy, reaching out to the needy, to children and the community as a whole. Now the training center’s first level is nearly finished. We’re boldly praying it can be dedicated by year’s end.
Other fantastic teams came from churches in middle TN; Williamsburg, VA; and Dothan, AL. They all enjoyed serving in partnership with churches in remote places like Sayaxché, Petén; Chajul, Quiché; and Limón Sur, Alta Verapaz. We give God thanks and glory for their passionate commitment to educational and evangelistic ministries in these places.
Hosting duties have kept everyone busy at Antioch Presbyterian Church. In addition to the mission teams, we’ve welcomed pastors and church leaders from nearby presbyteries that receive theology courses here. Among this year’s 41 students are seven Antioch members. Philip remains as the church’s pastor, Bacilia as deaconess, and each of our children is an ambassador for Christ in his or her own way.
Big changes are underway for Cobán’s La Patria Norte School, presently located in the town. In its first decade, this excellent Presbyterian school has struggled to meet enrollment and financial goals. A new board of directors is being formed and, with generous help from several U.S. churches, we’re ready to build new classrooms for the school which is being relocated on the Presbyterian mission complex. If you’re looking for a worthwhile project to support, I recommend this one wholeheartedly.
Life’s been quiet on the home front. Bacilia has a year to go for her nursing degree. Matthew, Manny and Stefi are in 9th, 6th, and 4th grades respectively at La Patria Norte. We’re richly blessed to have The Antioch Partners overseeing support for our work in Guatemala. And we’re deeply grateful to you and to The Outreach Foundation for each of the churches and individuals that pray for us and offer financial gifts that make it possible for us to live and serve here.
In a land torn apart by discord, Christ provides the gift of harmony. At the end of Psalm 133, we find out that through harmony “the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.”
May this blessing be upon you!
Philip, Bacilia, Matthew, Manuel and Estefana Beisswenger
Outreach is seeking $25,000 for support funds for the Beisswengers and $25,000 to assist with construction of the Mission and Training Center in Cobán.