In 2011, Timberline Church began a partnership with Enlace, the Spanish word for “link.” Enlace’s goal is to link churches in America with churches in El Salvador by training and empowering them to serve and love their communities. Since our partnership began, we have been able to go to El Salvador three times to work on projects with Pastor Santos at Iglesia Salem de Aic, the local church in El Espino. Teams have also been connected to its sister church with Pastor Jose Molina in La Labor.
Timberline Church sends youth and adult teams to these wonderful churches to love and support their church family and serve shoulder to shoulder with the church in their community. They successfully built a wall to prevent mud slides at the local school, built clean air eco-stoves in homes to improve health, and made home visits with disabled children and adults. Most importantly, the teams have also helped people come to Christ through their encouraging and loving attitudes.
A church to church partnership like this is far more powerful than simply doing something good for a school in rural central America. Instead, we are able to help a church develop lasting links in their community so outreach can continue on long after we leave.
During the upcoming Missions Celebration Week banquet on March 12th, one feature will be recreating the El Salvador experience with food, pictures, and hands-on activities like mixing mortar for the eco-stoves and walking through a before and after replica home.
From July 5-12, 2014, a team will be returning to El Espino to serve alongside the church and Pastor Santos. While project details are still being worked out, home visits will be a priority as we continue to support the local church. It is also likely we will be building more clean air stoves for families. For more information on this year’s trip, you can visit www.tsmelsalvador.org.
(Courtesy of Storyteller Nicole Sutton)