Evangelism Trip Mexico 2007
The Beginning Why Mexico? May 12, 2007 You’ve Got Mail…
From: Christian Sederholm To: The Coptic Evangelism GroupDate: Sat, May 12 2007 10:52 pm Subject: The Miracle in Mexico!!!!!!!!!!!! The Holy Week Miracle in the Coptic Church in Mexico. On the Good Friday during The Holy Week a Miracle happened….. Father Zakaria was ending the Holy Friday after a very Spiritual Service when the oil started ....... May God Bless You all, my Brother and Sisters in Christ. Somebody…..
So!!! June 2, 2007 You’ve Got Mail…
From: Victor Beshir To: The Coptic Evangelism GroupDate: Sat, June 2 2007 5:25 pm Subject: The Miracle in Mexico!!!!!!!!!!!! There is a great field there that is waiting for workers. The harvest is so great but there is only one worker there. Would you join the missionary work trip in August to share in this harvest? The only qualifications you need to have is a heart full of love to God and a desire to serve His Holy name
June 13, 2007 June 14, 2007 Dear Beloved, I am happy to tell you that I received the first respond to go to Mexico..Victor Dear Beloved, This morning I received a request from another person to go to Mexico. Victor Dear Beloved, We have now 10 persons joining the trip to Mexico Victor Dear Beloved, We are very happy that Father Timothy will join us Victor
The power of prayer From: MARIA MANSOUR Date: Wed, 30 May 2007 20:53:24 -0700 (PDT) Local: Wed, May 30 2007 11:53 pm Subject: Prayer Vigil " time slots" Dear Brethren: We need YOUR help to make this mission a success. No matter how hard we work to make it as beneficial as possible, we need your prayers to really make it touch people's lives. For this reason, we are hoping that we all participate in a 24-hr prayer vigil………….
Getting Prepared The group members worked diligently and tirelessly for months to prepare for this trip. Preparations included: • Collecting geographical, cultural and religious information about the country we are visiting, • Translating materials into Spanish, • Inquiring about health, accommodation, travel requirements, costs, etc. • Preparing the group Bible Study lessons, • Constant communications with our church in Mexico, • And a lot more……. • These were all compiled into a “Mission Trip” Reference Book that was provided to all members.
+++ Coptic Evangelism in North America Under the Auspices of H.G. Bishop Youssef, The Coptic Evangelism in North America The Missionary Trip to Tlaycapan, Mexico August 10 to August 19, 2007 “Do the work of an evangelist.” (2 Tim 5:4) Mission Trip Reference Book General Information:What is this about? Why a Missionary Trip to Mexico? Thanks to God for establishing a Coptic Orthodox Church in southern Mexico. The church was established in an area where many people still don’t worship God; instead, they are occupied with spirit worship. So, we are going to Mexico to do missionary work to people who are not Christians, to show them the love of God and to preach the gospel of salvation. In this kind of missionary work you will vividly see the hands of God, and before other peoples’ lives change, your life will dramatically be changed. If you’re eager to give a great boost to your spiritual life and to offer God a few days of your time, then join us and witness the work of God. It will be an unmatched experience that you will never forget; it will deeply touch your heart and will leave a joy and inner peace in your life for years to come. Who May go? You need to be a steward of God, with a deep love for God and a desire to evangelize. The trip is for persons at least 19 years of age. Since Spanish is the spoken language there, we would greatly appreciate to have some people who know some Spanish or are ready to learn Spanish before the trip using software or the Internet. The Cost You are responsible for paying for your own plane ticket. The cost of food, internal transportation, sightseeing, and lodging is only $ 200.00 How to Register Visit the following web page to fill out the registration forms and mail them before July 25, 2007. www.suscopts.org/evangelism/mclass.html then click on “Missionary Trip to Mexico”
August 10, 2007 A group of 11 servants from Canada, USA and Sweden arrived to the Mexico City Airport to spend 10 blessed days of service
August 13, 2007 We were blessed by the Arrival of Fr. Timotheus Soliman, the priest for St. John the Baptist Coptic Orthodox Church, Miami, FL. Fr. Timo (as we loved to call him), spent four blessed days with us, that were enriched by his spiritual lessons.
The Story of Our Coptic Orthodox Church in Tlayacapan Mexico On the way from the Mexico City Airport to the Blessed Village of Tlayacapan, The Group was told the amazing story of our First Coptic Orthodox Church in Mexico
The Story • God used the longing of an Egyptian Immigrant, (Mr. Looka), whose heart desire was to build a house of God, to build the first Coptic Orthodox church on his own on a small piece of land adjacent to his house. • The Church was used for Sunday School and Bible study for the two Egyptian families residing in this area. • Later on, God’s plans for a true working Church led Mr. Looka to tell Father Mikhail E. Mikhail, Cleveland, Ohio about the church. He told Abouna: “We have a Church that needs a Priest”.
Abouna told H. H. Pope Shenouda III, who was delighted to see the seriousness of this project. He recommended they find a bigger piece of land. • Mr. Looka started on this mission, doubting he could find any land in this expensive area. • A lady approached him one day, saying she had a piece of land for sale. • Price negotiations ended up with the unbelievable price of $40,000 for a land that’s worth much more. • The Lady was thrilled to know that her land would be used to build a house of God. • The church was named “St. Mary and St. Mark Coptic Orthodox Church”.
The church is located in Tlayacapan, Mexico, about two hours from Mexico City. It is surrounded by green mountains, situated in a quite area. The Church looks like a monastery.. it is indeed a big Church.. As what H. H. Pope Shenouda hoped for..
On the first floor to the left there is a big future clinic and a big kitchen. To the right are two bathrooms. The hall in between the two sides has been used for the Agaby gatherings after every Divine Liturgy. The church is built on the second floor. It has a crying room at the right side, also used for Sunday School, and a baptismal room at the left side. The nave of the church is big and has beautiful Coptic icons chosen by Fr. Zakaria Albramousy. Outside the church there are two small buildings. One is a guest house, and its second floor is the residence of Fr. Zakaria. The second building has rooms for visitors, (where we stayed). It consists of three rooms, each can accommodate up to nine persons.
Consecration of the Church • The church was consecrated by H.H. Pope Shenouda III in February 2007. • The Divine Liturgy is prayed in Spanish. • It is such a blessed church that holy oil poured from its icons. • Many indigenous people get baptized in the church. • The evangelistic efforts of the church continue to attract many natives to the faith.
The Father of the Church The calling Father Zakaria is from Albaramous Monastery. A scholar of Coptic Antiquity who has published many papers and articles in international Coptic societies. He never wanted to leave his monastic life. However, when the bishop of the monastery told him that H.H. Pope Shenouda wants him to go to Mexico., Fr. Zakaria knew in his heart that this was a calling and he agreed. When Fr. Zakaria arrived in Mexico, the church building was not finished and there were no people attending church services. He was saddened to feel that he left his spiritual service in the monastery, taking care of about 400 youth every year to come to a church whose congregation consisted only of Looka's family and his friend.
The Language of Love Fr. Zakaria decided to go back to Egypt when he received a comforting message from St. Mary asking him to stay and witness the glory of God. On the Good Friday of 2007, all the icons of the church started to pour oil. Fr. Zakaria didn’t leave the church. He loves the entire congregation as his own children. Even though he doesn't speak Spanish fluently, he uses the language of love. God used him to baptize a lot of people, and the work of God is manifested in the miracles taking place in the church. Father Zakaria’s love touched each one of us in a special way. He welcomed us with roses from the church garden, but the love and the warmth he showed to us during our stay was more beautiful than a rose garden.
God sends a deacon to his Church God’s miracles didn’t stop at the oil and the icons… The church was in need of a deacon… Joseph, from El-Menya, Upper Egypt was living in USA. He was married to a true Christian Woman from Mexico. Adriana wished they could live together in Mexico among her family, But it was impossible for Joseph to live in a place that has no Coptic Orthodox Church. And behold, A car problem stops Adriana's family, while traveling between two Mexican towns, and it stops right in front of the new Coptic Orthodox Church in Tlyacapan. The family was delighted to inform Joseph and Adriana that God has solved the problem and that they can move to Mexico and live by the Coptic Orthodox Church. Joseph now serves in the church and teaches the congregation the Spanish Hymns of the Divine Liturgy. His Blessed wife serves with him with all her heart. This couple showed great love and dedication to the service and to us during our visit.
The Group from USA, Canada, and Sweden was joined by servants from Mexico.
By the way, Would you like to come and see one of Mexico’s most important religious places? Come on!!! It is a free tour… Take your place in the line and watch your step!!
Our Lady of Guadalupe The image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, In the Guadalupe Cathedral is a 16th-century Mexican Icon of the Virgin Mary. It is Mexico's most popular religious and one of its most famous cultural images.
The Story Juan Diego was an indigenous Mexican who had a significant impact on the spread of Christianity within Mexico. On December 9, 1531, he heard the sound of someone calling his name. He ran up the hill, and saw a Lady, dressed like an Aztec princess. The Lady spoke to him in Nahuatl, his native tongue and asked him to tell the bishop of Mexico, a Franciscan named Juan de Zumárraga, that she wanted a sacred little house, to be built on the spot where she stood.
Recognizing the Lady as the Virgin Mary, Juan Diego went to the bishop, but the Spanish bishop, was doubtful and told Diego he needed a sign. Diego returned to Tepeyac hill and explained to the Lady that the bishop did not believe him. The Lady insisted he return to the bishop. On Sunday, Diego did as the Lady directed, but again the bishop asked for a sign. Later that day, the Lady promised Juan Diego she would give him a sign the following day. He returned home to discovered that his Uncle is seriously ill. Juan Diego decided not to meet with the Lady, but to find a priest who could administer the last rites to his dying uncle.
When he tried to skirt around Tepeyac hill, the Lady stopped him, assured him his uncle would not die, and asked him to climb the hill and gather flowers. It was December, when normally nothing blooms in the cold. He found roses from the region of Castille in Spain, former home of the bishop. The Lady placed the roses carefully inside the folded robe that Diego wore and told him to open it only before the bishop. When he unfolded his robe before the Bishop roses cascaded and icon of Virgin Mary was miraculously impressed on the cloth, bringing the bishop to his knees. The bishop acknowledged the miracle and within two weeks, ordered a shrine to be built where the Virgin Mary had appeared. The bishop then entrusted the image to Juan Diego, who chose to live, until his death at age of 74 in a small hermitage near the spot where the Virgin Mary had appeared
Ahhhhh… We left our hearts in Tlayacapan We Learned a lot about the true meaning of Love!!