|Por Jehovah son ordenados los pasos del hombre, Y el aprueba su camino.
Cuando el hombre cayere, no quedara postrado, Porque Jehovah sostiene su mano.
Hola! Dios le bendiga a todos! As of today, I have been in Argentina for 8 months, 243 days to be exact. The time has flown by and it’s hard to believe it’s actually been that long. A lot has happened in that time. From arriving in Argentina, to reconnecting with so many here, finally moving into my own apartment, having my first visitors from Canada and driving all around. The time has been amazing and God had provided and continued to open doors, unimaginable doors.
I just finished 6 months of language school. It is flowing much easier and I realize that I don’t have to do as much translating. There is still much to learn, and remember but at times it feels very natural and a normal everyday life speaking in Spanish. Next step is the CELU International Exam in November.
The residency process continues and is almost complete. Casi. The process changed in January so a few things had to be redone; and there always seems to be something new that is needed. I do have to say the paperwork needed and the process with the National Police Department was on of the easier and more enjoyable steps. The Argentine culture really is very welcoming despite all the red tape and bureaucracy. This was confirmed several weeks later in the middle of town, by the Argentine greeting I received from a few of the Inspectors I had met that day,
February was also a month of change for a few of the churches in the South. Thank you all for your prayers during this time of transition. The first weekend of February we travelled to Jacobacci to celebrate the anniversary of the church. It was great to connect with Pastor Juan and Ivonne, and many others including youth from the event back in December. We shared some great laughs during this weekend too. The pastor of this church has unfortunately decided to leave the Covenant, for personal reasons. We continue to hold him up in prayer along with his congregation. Argentina operates a bit different then North America in many ways; he owns the properties and buildings. He is still continuing in ministry, just not with a denomination. Our church and property also belonged to him; so that meant that for those of us who remained with the Covenant, we had to find a new premise. Pastor Hector and Pastora Norma have had a busy month of caring for their congregation, saying Goodby to the old congregation and starting fresh. We have been blessed and provided for in so many ways. Nothing stopped any of the reunions/meetings here. We met in homes and the local Co-op meeting room. The groups reformed and discussed what this new year looks like. Not a beat was skipped or a reunion postponed. And everyone continues with friendships and prayer for those who remained in the old Church. For me it is learning even more some of the cultural ways and also an opportunity for me to use my administration skills as we reorganize; and it’s a learning curve for IPEA as they review their own processes.
This has been a busy month of walking alongside others, in prayer and in presence. There is a strengthening within the Covenant Churches here and I am encouraged to watch it and be a part of it. To be the Covenant Missionary here, in this church, my home church here in Argentina, has significance. When I think about the last eight months and some of the very intense times of grief; I know there was deep healing; in the intensity, that allows me to be stronger in Christ at this moment. Over the months, a few of you have asked me if I perhaps entered the mission field too early. At the start of this year, I felt a very strong, renewed conviction of knowing I am where I am supposed to be and renewed, an even deeper sense of continual surrender of the unseen. After these events; I know, more then ever, that no, I didn’t jump back in too soon. I hope you can see, as I do, God’s impeccable timing, in every single detail.
The end of February was preparing the the Asemblea March 2-3 in Beratzetagui. Their annual meeting. In this Asemblea I presented BLESS, they had two different seminars on teaching and knowing their children’s rights with sexual gender issues, within their schools and within their churches. IPEA is even working with a budget now. I know, I know, for many of you, your eyes glaze over at budget meetings; but for me, this was exciting to be a part of. The BLESS presentation went well (even at 10pm at night!) and I am looking forward to working with all of the churches in a more detailed and longer workshop. Pastor Ivan is President of IPEA for another three years.
The beginning of March has started off busy, with the Asemblea, but also relaxing with close friends after. And of course, I celebrated my birthday with everyone; or really, they celebrated with me. While I didn’t want it to be anything but just another day; for every one of my friends, it’s an important day and they want to share it with me. So we did. Cake and songs (in Spanish and English at the end of the Asemblea), countless WhatsApp messages, Facebook posts (form all over the world), meals, and even a surprise back in Bariloche. I have to share this story with you. My flight was late, about 2 1/2 hours late. The ladies group had a ‘meeting’ scheduled for 8 so I knew I’d be very late or miss it. I was picked up at the airport by Violeta and Luis, and Marcela. They joked around about the missionary being late for the ‘reunion’. We got to the Co-op salon, that we have been using for our services and some of the group meetings, and I entered quietly not wanting to interrupt the meeting going on. It was dark and very quiet at first. Full of almost everyone from our church and then cheering Feliz Cumpleano. Decorations, food, laughter, food, gifts, food, lots of hugs and greetings and of course a huge cake (thank you for only putting one one candle). My heart is full. There are times when I just want to hide and not acknowledge special occasions; not because I don’t want to share events with others, but because my best friend is no longer with me physically to be a part of these events, and yet you all turned this day into a very, very special day. Thank you everyone for including me and accepting me as part of your family.
March will be a month of learning a new rhythm, without school, and with more and more ministry. I will be participating with the Youth groups and the Missions Group specifically and have already been asked to teach on a few things. There are a lot of ministry opportunities here and ways to serve and I am praying, with open hands and a surrendered heart, for God’s will and direction. There is also a different feeling to this moving forward, into ministry Max and I were to do together, and into new ministry, through new doors that have been opened.
I am looking forward to hearing from some of you for dates of trips – Who’s next to visit? Who’s the first Canadian team coming? Come and experience Argentina – Learn what Max and I fell in love with – Visit and be immersed as you serve alongside all of us here!
I hope you are all beginning to thaw out from your cold winter. We are cooling down in temperatures and we start to move into fall. But it was still 38 and humid in Buenos Aires and it is still 14 here in Bariloche. I am also looking at options for relaxing, turning off the brain a bit, and recharging. Trying out some photography, and something completely new – Crossfit –
Don’t forget to note the new contact info:
Mailing address for the ECCC has changed:
PO Box 2247, Strathmore, AB, T1P 1K2
Mailing address here in Argentina:
Cacique Purran No 4019, Barrio El Frutillar
(8400) San Carlos de Bariloche
Provincia de Rio Negro, Republica Argentina
Prayer and Praise
I will forever be thankful and grateful for each and everyone of you. For your prayers, your support, your friendship and your presence in my life.
Praise and gratefulness for the ECCC and the ECC – it is exciting, wonderful and I am humbled to be a part of this family – to be a Canadian Covenant Missionary! I am proud to be an ambassador for Christ with the Covenant! I am thankful for God’s timing and working in all the details of my life.
Prayer requests include: the residency process, continued expansion and fluidity of the language.
Prayer for 2019 and the continued ministry here and a clearer view of my role in it. Prayers as I move from school and the known, more into new ministry and the unseen.
Prayers for Argentina as they face economic issues, and for the churches as they respond
Continued prayers for BET EL as we find a new location and pray for God’s direction in this transition.
Continued prayers for the congregations – of those remaining with the Covenant and those following the other pastor.
Praise and rejoicing for the family and friends that I have here
Prayers for Merge teams, individuals, couples and family that are looking to come to Argentina
Praise for the funding that has been generously provided
I’d love to connect with you all. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about anything – Visiting your church, Missions, Argentina, ServeGlobally, Prayer Support, Financial Support
Mail your donation:
Evangelical Covenant Church of Canada
PO Box 2247
write “Global-Argentina” in memo
– select Global Argentina
Etransfer to firstname.lastname@example.org
– write “Global-Argentina” in memo
Online at … covchurch.ca/nahnychuk
Evangelical Covenant Church
8303 West Higgins Road
Chicago, IL 60631
write “Colleen Nahnychuk Support” in memo