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For some of you reading this, the post below will repeat what you got from us via e-mail earlier today. I’ve been designated as the blogger for the trip so there are others of you who are coming here for the first time. Welcome and I’ll do my best to keep your apprised of our activities, praises and prayer requests from Monterrey. I’ll do my best to include photos and/or videos along the way. You can see in the note below some of the thoughts Anita and I have been having as this week approaches. What does our caring for the fatherless look like? Is it all financial? Is it hands-on? Do we support others who do it or does God call us to do it ourselves? Does it have to be the locals or can it be an outsider who calls that country their home? As I said in an earlier post, can we just show up and work and love? Or do we have to bring supplies? Where does the gospel of Jesus Christ come in? Early? Later? Are these kids hearts fertile to hear the gospel? Or does my sharing it have any credibility at all? Our worlds are so different. Or are they?

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Well, not quite yet. We will be leaving tomorrow at 7a.m. heading to the border, then on to Monterrey, Mexico.

I have to admit, I just started packing today. But don’t think that haven’t been preparations going on before today. A few days ago, Joshua was helping Christina brush up on her soccer skills as they will play a lot of soccer with the children there. He was yelling at her in Spanish, “mano!, mano!” as the children will in Monterrey. It was really funny. She was a good sport.

I admit I am in the midst of a spiritual crisis of sorts. Bruce and I have been struggling with the question “If God calls the church to care for orphans, what does it look like for the wealthy American church to care for orphans?” Does it look different? Should it look different? If you have followed Bruce’s blog you will have already read his post, “What if We Brought Just Ourselves?” While we are busy collecting donations, purchasing 25,000 children’s vitamins, pre-natal vitamins, etc. (all of which I think are good) our children are brushing up on soccer skills. They just want to play with the children…with a ball. We prepare to leave with a bit of confusion, wonder and sense of adventure as we work through this question. I don’t know if there is an answer but I believe it is a question worth exploring.

Thank you for joining us. We are so glad to have you on our support team. Many of you committed to pray for us so we wanted to provide some specific things, for now, to pray for our family and for our team…

Safety. Many of you have read (and some expressed concern) about the danger in the border towns. Our Global Outreach pastor and our partnering organization in Monterrey are both confident that things in Monterrey are as usual and little reason to be concerned. That said, it is a cosmopolitan city – the second largest in all of Mexico (about 3.5 million people). There are really nice parts and there are some not-so-nice parts. Please pray for safety in our travels and during our time in the city.

Health. The flu is hitting the kids’ school hard. One day this week 13 students went home sick (that doesn’t even take into account the children who stayed home that day). While we are all feeling well today please pray that none of us gets the flu. And as always when traveling to Mexico, pray that we wouldn’t get stomach or intestinal “bugs,” though Back2Back Ministries in Monterrey has it’s own well that we’re actually able to drink from freely.

Again, we appreciate your being part of our team to provide care for today and a hope for tomorrow to the children of Monterrey. Bruce has arranged for someone else to drive this year so he’ll have more time to blog while there.

Thank you.

Bruce, Anita, Joshua and Christina
http://bruceeric.wordpress.com

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