Saturday, September 30, 2017

October 2017 Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

It is hard to believe that we are now approaching the end of our first term here in Nicaragua. I am convinced we will stay busy until the end. Last month was a big month for us. Our church began building their own church building. Beyond all of the normal ministries of the church, Pastor Berner has also been leading home bible studies in different parts of the city each week. Through this outreach, several have received Christ. We pray that God continues working in the life of each person. We have invested much time this last month getting all of the legal documentation for our baby Elijah. Having dual citizenship, we now have his Nicaraguan passport and we are awaiting all of his legal documents from the USA Embassy. After obtaining lots of other government documents, we presented all of it before the Nicaraguan Immigration department only to be told that we could not change residency status until next year. This is contrary to what we were told the last three times. We have all been praying for God to give us favor and accomplish his perfect will on this matter. After asking the advice of the immigration agent, we were then advised that there was another process by which we could take our planned furlough without losing all of the work we have been building upon up to this point. This was a huge blessing. We can now move forward planning our furlough with greater confidence. Next month, Jeremy intends to spend some time visiting in the city of Dolores, which we are prayerfully considering for the location of our next church plant.

As for our family, Michelle has had a great recovery. Baby Elijah has now grown to 12 lbs! Our church was very excited to see him. The Nicaraguan Immigration Department is normally all business, but even the ladies there couldn’t help but to gush over him when they took his passport picture! Although we accomplished much last month in terms of government processes and documentation, there is still much to do. We are not only transitioning out of a church ministry, but also out of a home, a school, and a country… not to mention making plans for furlough. We have now made contact with nearly all of our supporting churches. We are looking forward to being able to see our families again, as well as the country from which we came.

We are so thankful for all of your prayers and support. This month, please pray:

1. That God will continue to bless our evangelistic efforts, save souls, and give spiritual growth.
2. That God will raise up servants in the church to take our place as we transition out.
3. That God will open doors in the city of Dolores, where we will begin visiting.

In Christ,

Jeremy, Michelle, Lila, and Ellowyn Blanz

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

September 2017 Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

Last month was a very special month for us. As the month progressed, we had more and more visits to the capital city of Managua for Michelle’s prenatal doctor appointments. We also had to get prepared for a newborn baby. On Saturday, August 26th, our first baby boy, Elijah Nathaniel Blanz, was born. Thankfully, he and Michelle are both now healthy and doing great. Lila and Ellowyn are also very excited to have a little brother. Since then, we have been busy with other appointments. Since he will have dual citizenship, we are working to get both his passports and legal documentation from both the Nicaragua and United States governments. In early September, we are awaiting a visit from Michelle’s parents. It will be a very special trip for them to meet their first grandson. We are all looking forward to the trip.

Since the 2 year anniversary of the church plant, we have continue to see the church grow and strengthen. Pastor Berner and his wife Alma are doing a great job. Later this month, they will take a short trip to another city to help evangelize and area where a young Bible Institute graduate will begin planting a church. During this time, Jeremy will do a little more around the church. Other than that, Jeremy has been trying to work himself out of a job. We will be leaving for furlough in December and we want the church to be ready to keep pushing forward. Pastor Berner recently began a home outreach to hold in-home evangelistic services in different parts of the city. He has a great vision and will do a great job even after we leave. He also organized a “Soup and Sale” event at the church to raise funds for the building project. The other day on visitation, Jeremy spoke with a woman named Elsa who said she knew she would go to Hell. Jeremy explained to her that her only hope is found in the Lord Jesus Christ. She did not yet receive Christ that day, but the seed was planted. Please pray for her. Jeremy has continued making plans for furlough. We now have a few more meetings on the schedule. We have made our furlough schedule available to our supporting churches at “blanz2Nicaragua.blogspot.com” and under the tab “our schedule.”

This month, we intend to get our legal residency extended to 5 years. This is very important as it affects our furlough from March until October. After this, we will book more meetings. This month, please pray:

1. That God convict and save Elsa and others who have heard the Gospel preached clearly.
2. That God will help our residency extension to get approved without delay or problems.
3. That Michelle will have a great recovery from giving birth last month.

In Christ,

Jeremy, Michelle, Lila, and Ellowyn Blanz

Friday, August 11, 2017

August 2017 Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

Last month was a special month for us. To celebrate the second anniversary of the church plant, we held a 3 day anniversary conference. Each night, the attendance was approximately 200 people. This included some visiting groups from other baptist churches in other cities. There were many visitors and each night, there were several professions of faith. We are thankful that the Lord is still adding to the church. During the regular services, Jeremy has continued his series on the Holy Spirit. While many churches have left people confused, it has been a great opportunity to provide clarity on the doctrines of the Holy Spirit. One other baptist church nearby has invited Jeremy to teach the same series. There have been great discussions and great questions, but it has been edifying to many. One man in our church recently began preparing for the ministry at the Bible Institute in Managua. It has been exciting for our church to rally behind him and pray for him as he begins his studies. As for the building project, we have now sorted out many of the obstacles including paying several years of back taxes on the land as well as obtaining permission from the local government to remove a few trees and begin construction. We expect to begin building very soon. In between everything else, Jeremy is continuing to contact our supporting churches regarding furlough. We are now scheduled to be in 15 churches. To view our online calendar, please visit Blanz2Nicaragua.blogspot.com and click the tab that says, “Our Schedule.”

Lord willing, this will be our last prayer letter before Michelle gives birth to our baby boy. He is due on the 24th. At our church plant, the ladies wanted to throw a surprise baby shower for Michelle. It was a special night and meant a lot to her. There were probably 50 people there easily. We are thankful to be part of such a loving church. Other events from the family last month would include Jeremy having to take a trip to Managua in the middle of the night to get stitches. Long story, but the good news is that he is okay. It was just warm up for when the baby comes!

We are looking forward to some big changes with our baby's birth this month. This month, will you please pray:
1. That God keeps his hand upon Michelle and the baby for a healthy delivery.
2. That God will continue to save souls, build, and strengthen His church here.
3. That God will guide us in our furlough planning.

In Christ,
Jeremy, Michelle, Lila, and Ellowyn Blanz


Monday, July 10, 2017

July 2017 Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

Last month was a very busy month here in Nicaragua. Early in the month, we held a special service for “Children’s Day,” which is a national holiday here in Nicaragua. We had about 150 people in attendance, including about 110 children and teenagers. Near the end of the month, we held a special Father’s Day service. There were about 120-130 people present, and 2 made professions of faith. Although many people come and go with time, we were thankful for one new family who began attending very faithfully and even helping out around the church. Jeremy has been using the remaining months here to help ground the church doctrinally. He started a series on the study of the Holy Spirit. Many people have been left very confused on this topic, and it is a great opportunity to reinforce biblical teaching. There has been much interest, and we are excited to see the people gain a biblical understanding of the Holy Spirit. We are pushing on in all of the local church ministries. One family recently opened up her home for us to host a teen service in their neighborhood. We are thankful for that. We have enjoyed seeing how God is building His church.

Instead of celebrating Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and Children’s Day all separately, Lila and Ellowyn’s school held a special “Family Day.” We enjoyed getting to see Lila and Ellowyn singing their songs in Spanish. Many people are surprised to hear how fluent Lila has become. Last month, we also began making more preparations for the baby to be born in August as well as setting up meetings for furlough. We have contacted nearly all of our supporting churches in the South. We are waiting a couple more months for our residency to get extended before calling all of the remaining churches up North. You can view our current furlough schedule at Blanz2Nicaragua.blogspot.com and by clicking the tab that says, “Our Schedule.”

We are thankful for all of your prayers and support. This month, will you please pray for the following?

1. That God keep His hand upon Michelle and the baby during the last 2 months of pregnancy.
2. That God continue to use His church here to see souls saved and lives changed.
3. That God will give us wisdom as take the next steps in the church building process.

In Christ,

Jeremy, Michelle, Lila, and Ellowyn Blanz

Saturday, June 3, 2017

June 2017 Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

It is now June and dry season in Nicaragua has ended. We have now been here for over two years, and we are so thankful for all God has done. We continue visiting new homes and families to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Last month, we took about 30 people from our church to a city of a new church plant and visited the area to help promote an evangelistic conference. Jeremy had the privilege of leading two people to Christ. Another young mother was really considering the message. 2 days later, she called the local pastor and was ready to trust Christ as her Lord and Savior. I have been told that she is now attending faithfully in the new church. Also, last month, Jeremy began preaching a series on Biblical Stewardship. We trust the Lord to bless and the church to be strengthened. We also ended the month with a special Mother’s day service. With most of our families present and several new families visiting, there were nearly 200 people in attendance. We’ve seen a few new people attend regularly since then.

Every month that goes by, we are approaching the birth our baby boy. He is due in late August, and we are making preparations. Thankfully, all of the ultrasounds and prenatal doctor appointments have all gone well. Thankfully, Michelle has had a pretty good month and is not feeling too sick. When she visits with me, the ladies like to hear how the baby will be born here in Nicaragua. Near the end of the month, there was a special “Family Day” at Lila and Ellie’s school. Both of their classes did special presentations. We really enjoy seeing them sing in Spanish and be part of the culture here.

Perhaps, the biggest piece of news is that we will be preparing to take our first missionary furlough in late December. Jeremy is working on our schedule and our travel plans and will be contacting all of our supporting churches very soon with more information. This month, will you please pray:

1. That God keep His hand upon Michelle and our baby in the last few months of pregnancy.
2. That God continue to saving souls and conforming the Nicaraguan people to Christ.
3. That the Lord guide us through the legal process in constructing the new church building.

In Christ,


Jeremy, Michelle, Lila, and Ellowyn Blanz

Friday, May 5, 2017

May 2017 Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

In Nicaragua, we have been in dry season for a few months, and are just now feeling a little relief from our first rain last night! God is good! Last month, we stayed busy in the work in the church plant in San Marcos. One lady whom we had visited for over a year finally made the decision to trust Christ for salvation. Praise the Lord! After a Gospel message one night, another rededicated her life to the Lord. One mechanic in the church bought and fixed up a van to help bring more kids to church. We then held an evangelistic children’s event in a new neighborhood. Many responded in the invitation and the church member is now providing weekly transportation to Sunday School. God is good! Pastor Berner organized a church sale to raise funds for the building. We are now waiting on the estimate to get started building soon. Jeremy also visited and preached in another church plant that the church we planted is supporting. He was also invited to preach in a 3 church combined missions conference in Managua. The pastor that invited him said that many of the churches had not yet begun supporting missions or focused strongly on local evangelism. Jeremy had the privilege of preaching on the topic of world missions and local evangelism. We are so excited to see local Nicaraguan churches now taking steps forward in the work of World Evangelism.

Last month was a difficult month for the family. We were hit by both a stomach flu and another virus which slowed us down some. A few doctor visits later, we are all doing better. Our baby boy is now 5 months along, and is expected to be born in late August. All of the prenatal appointments have gone well. Lila and Ellowyn are both doing well in their school. Lila’s teacher told me that one day she said she had a message for the class. She then proceeded to tell them how Jesus died for them and that they could all be saved through faith in Christ. Every night, she prays for the salvation of the lost. We are so thankful that God has given her such a tender heart.

Due to rising costs of printing and postage, we wanted to let you know that every month we send out our prayer letters through email and our blog (Blanz2Nicaragua.blogspot.com). If you wish to help us lower operating costs and receive the monthly letter by email, please send me an email to let me know at Blanz2Nicaragua@gmail.com . We are thankful for everyone who prays for us, and want to continue delivering the monthly prayer letters in the most efficient way possible. This month, please pray…

1. That the Lord help Michelle and our baby boy during the remaining months of pregnancy.
2. That God continue saving souls and changing lives here in Nicaragua.
3. That the Lord to guide us in the construction of the new church building.

In Christ,

Jeremy, Michelle, Lila, and Ellowyn Blanz

Monday, April 10, 2017

April 2017 Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

Last month was another busy month for us. Early in the month, we had an Evangelistic Conference in cooperation with a visiting church from the states. We enjoyed getting to know them, and there were a few people that made decisions to receive Christ or rededicate their lives. In the Wednesday night teaching service, Jeremy has been teaching doctrinal messages to help ground the church in the word of God. There were two teenagers who received Christ after the service. Apart from normal visiting, Sunday School, and preaching, Jeremy also preached in a youth service. He was also invited to come preach to a Canadian group in Managua. Michelle had a great opportunity to teach a short series in the weekly ladies service. One big accomplishment was that we now have our legal residency approved for another year. We consider ourselves blessed because several others are still waiting for approval. Last month, we had the privilege of counseling a young couple who were married last month. That was our first church wedding. This young couple is also helping out in the youth ministry. We look forward to seeing how God will use their lives.

After such a busy month, we are looking forward to getting a “breather” here in April. We are currently in what is called, “Holy Week.” Much of the businesses and government shut down during this time. Unfortunately, for the majority, it is not a very “holy” week. For most people, it’s simply a time of vacation. Our girls have been doing pretty well in school. Lila does great, but Ellowyn is having a little difficulty with the language. We will use this week off from school to help teach her some more basic Spanish. Thankfully, Michelle has been feeling a little bit better this month in the pregnancy. She is now half-way. In each of the appointments with the doctor, we hear that the baby is doing well.

This month, we had to do some additional paperwork for the church property, but we expect to begin building soon. God is doing great things! This month, will you please pray:

1. That God will bless Michelle and the baby with good health throughout the pregnancy.
2. That God will guide the building process for the church in San Marcos.
3. That God will guide our next steps as we follow His will in our ministry?
In Christ,

Jeremy, Michelle, Lila, and Ellowyn Blanz