An overhead voice said, “This is your captain speaking.” After a few hours of sitting on the tarmac at Tucson International Airport, the captain instructed us to deboard the plane until further notice. As we waited, I reflected on our 2024 travels. Since February, we have flown to Florida, Texas, New Hampshire, and Georgia to encourage pastors, equip congregations, and train Christian leaders. These opportunities have given us a front-row seat to see the Church in action across cities and communities and allowed us to witness the profound impact of our collective efforts on these local communities and churches, a testament to the power of our shared mission.

Mike, Enrique, and I presented the Corazón Ministries cross-cultural marriage training in Spanish for Iglesia de la Alabanza in Boca Raton, Florida. Mike was introduced to pastor Hazeal and his wife over six years ago. At the time, the Church was newly planted and experiencing growing pains. Mike offered encouragement through Corazón. There was standing room only at the marriage conference weekend, with over one hundred people in attendance. The ever-growing Church has made an impact on its Hispanic neighbors, and its success story is one of many that continue to inspire us.

The Blessing Church, a testament to the impact of our missionary work, celebrated its one-year anniversary in February. Mike and I were there for the grand opening in 2023 and traveled back to Dallas to join in the festivities. Pastor Yoon and his wife brought a predominantly Korean youth team from Los Angeles, California, to work a summer missions week with Corazón over fifteen years ago. Since then, we have collaborated in ministry in California, Arizona, and Texas. Pastor Yoon’s dedication to missions and to the Hispanic and Latino communities has led to significant growth and progress.

Latino communities grow in the Northeastern United States. The recent Franklin Graham, God Loves You, La Frontera tour brought Pastor Juan from Manchester, New Hampshire, to Tucson. He and Mike became acquainted, resulting in an invitation to Lifeway church. In March, Mike and I braved the cold temperatures, spent a blessed time with the Lifeway staff, and presented the Corazón Ministries cross-cultural training. Mike preached on Sunday morning. Praise God, a young man who came to the Church for the first-time accepted Christ as his Savior and Lord during the sermon. 

Our most recent trip to Atlanta flipped our typical travel script. Rather than going to equip the Church, we attended the first American Association of Christian Counselors Next Gen Youth Mental Health conference to become better equipped to minister to Gen Z and Gen Alpha. The Conference brought together mental health professionals and ministry leaders who are passionate about young men and women with the growing mental health crisis amongst emerging generations with the hope of the Gospel.

We are deeply grateful for your continued support and encouragement, and we ask you to continue prayer and support as we strive to make a difference in these communities. The Apostle Paul reminds believers in Ephesians 4:3-5 that one Spirit unites us in one body and one faith. We have witnessed the truth of this scripture firsthand. God’s people reach out, make disciples, and expand the kingdom. It’s thrilling to be a part of the movement of God today as it was when we began Corazón Ministries thirty years ago. Mike and I have several more trips scheduled in 2024. If you see us at an airport, please stop and say hello. 

-Claire Alameda

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