Since 2010, South Tulsa Baptist church has been actively ministering in Guatemala, and primarily in the farming community of Santa Maria de Jesus. The malnutrition, illiteracy and poverty rates in Santa Maria de Jesus are among the highest in all of Guatemala. A farm laborer makes approximately $3.75 for a 10-12 hour day, and finds it extremely difficult to provide nutritious food for his family, much less to pay for all of the tuition, fees, books, school supplies and required school uniforms needed to send his children to school. The children grow up with little or no education, and the poverty cycle continues from generation to generation.
Although the situation in Santa Maria seems hopeless, we believe that the Lord has united us as a team to remind the children and their parents that He is the God of hope. We began working with a young local pastor, Pastor Gabriel Cuca Vicente, and a missionary, Mario Miño, to establish a feeding center and a scholarship program. There were 30 children that came the first weeks of the feeding program, and we had 27 children given “scholarships” the first year of that program.
As the number of children coming each week for nourishment, from the good food they were given and the Good News that was also being shared, it became obvious that more space was needed. South Tulsa was instrumental in the building of a new feeding center, Campos de Sueños. Today, the feeding center is ministering to nearly a thousand children and youth each week. And Campos de Sueños is also the site of a new church that ministers to the children and their parents.
The scholarship program, which is also administered as part of Campos de Sueños, has grown each year as more deserving children, who weren’t able to go to school without financial assistance, were identified. This last year, the people of South Tulsa provided scholarships to 120 elementary and middle school children.
In the years since we began, through the ministries of Campos de Sueños thousands of children have experienced the love and compassion of Christ, and hundreds have come to accept him as Savior. Campos de Sueños, along with all of its programs, is mostly dependant upon the financial assistance it receives from South Tulsa members. At this time it costs approximately $200 per year to feed a child twice a week, and it takes $160 per year to send a child to elementary school and $365 per to for a middle/high school child.
Vision of Campos de Sueños:
“Raising generations of disciples of Jesus Christ and preparing them for a lifetime walk with the Lord and service to Him.”
Mission of Campos de Sueños:
To provide a place of excellence where the children can come and sense God’s love and compassion in everything and everyone.
To demonstrate to the children God’s character and their value to the Lord through acts of kindness such as meals, scholarships, benevolence and creative, dynamic teachings that bring them to the realization of who Jesus Christ is and what He has done for them.
To provide opportunities for the children to come to know Jesus as their personal Savior and to develop in them a desire to walk daily with Him.
To develop disciples of Jesus Christ and foster activities that will encourage them to serve.
To identify and develop young people that have a calling from God to serve Him on a full time basis.
To provide opportunities to share God’s love with the parents that do not know Christ.
Ministries of Campos de Sueños:
Feeding Center – Provides meals to undernourished children twice per week in addition to Bible teachings.
Scholarship Program – Provides scholarships to children that cannot afford the costs involved with obtaining an education.
Youth/Discipleship & Sports Program – Provides an additional meal once per week for older children that are willing to be discipled.
Visiting and Child Information Team – Visits the families of the children and obtains updated information on the scholarship children and non-scholarship children and puts together informational packets for each child.
Prayer Breakfasts with Fathers – Done quarterly to help promote a hunger for God in fathers that do not have a relationship with Christ.
Family Evening – Done Quarterly to reach to families that do not have a home church.
Drama Team – Encourages the children to be witnesses for Christ and develops in them a Missionary mentality.
Campos de Sueños Church – Provides a place where children and parents that do not have a home church can grow in their faith in Christ. Develops and trains home visitation/Evangelism teams composed of church members that can follow up with the parents that do not know Christ.
“For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a hope and a future” Jeremiah 29:11.