Friends of God's Work in Cuba,                                                                                                  September 2015

Only days before the pope arrived, I returned from Cuba. Though we had no massive crowds like the pope, we did prepare to maximize the explosive movement of teenagers following Jesus! Since 2003 Reach Out has invested much time, energy, and money in Cuba. And our ministry of equipping and empowering younger generation leaders has proven exceedingly effective.

Pino, Randy Godfrey (Reach Out Board), Elio, and Barry
As our Cuba team planned, this contrast gripped me: phenomenal ministry with people in poverty. People ask, "Are Cubans better off now with a more open country?" The answer: No. Cubans always live below the poverty  line. They make about $50 a month, but need $250 per month minimum to survive. Yet God takes their "little" and makes it "much!" Reach Out's Cuba team--led by Elio Martiz and Pino Fernandez--takes little and makes it much by focusing on training leaders and providing resources to apply the training.

Consider what Reach Out's Cuba team has accomplished:
  • Over 2,000 youth leaders have received Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry training in ten years.
  • 675 have received training in the last two years.
  • 145 churches from 8 denominations have participated.
  • 11 of 15 provinces have received the training.
  • 22 JFYM Forums will have been conducted in 2015.
  • 6 college ministries implement JFYM with significant success.
  • 12 ongoing Leader Training meetings have raised more leaders to train others.
Printing resources in Cuba offers a monumental challenge. However our Cuba team has translated and printed:
  • 4,000+ copies of 15 Reach Out resources, with 5 going to press for reprints.
  • 5 new titles printed in 2015.
  • 3 more new titles to print in 2016.
These books go into the hands of youth leaders and teenagers who otherwise have zero resources, and who can pay zero dollars to buy them.

Armed with training and resources, our Cuba team equips leaders with Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry and provides the resources to implement it. What does that look like?
Liga de Evangelica

In Cuba, Liga de Evangelica represents over 4,000 house churches spread across the country. This movement began years ago through Alejandro Nieto, an amazing pastor in times of severe persecution. He was the first pastor to befriend Reach Out. His son Abdiel (with beard), and I have been friends since he was ten years old. He leads the Liga youth ministry movement now. Liga has 60 youth leaders who are in the process of implementing Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry, with more training ahead. Pino remarked, "They have great potential to reach the younger generation in Cuba for Christ." And Reach Out is partners with them to maximize that potential!

Pino Training the Liga Team
Calvary Church

Calvary Church in Havana City, the largest Baptist church in Cuba, gathered 18 leaders who lead students of secondary school and college age. They met for a 3-day JFYM Forum camp this summer, but with only one air-conditioned room (see picture). Pino and Danay, Pino's wife, led the training. All left knowing how to disciple others using Reach Out's "Moving Toward Maturity Series." They will start discipleship groups with teenagers this fall using those books.

Calvary's Air Conditioned Youth Leaders with Pino and Danay
Manzanillo and Niquero

In eastern Cuba, a difficult geographical area to reach, 24 leaders in Manzanillo and Niquero recently received their second level of Jesus-Focused Youth Ministry training. They focused on Building Leaders and Teamwork. Now they have the qualifications to train others in JFYM in various churches and college ministries.

All Over Cuba--Leaders Trained!
Because you come alongside Reach Out with your prayers and giving--phenomenal ministry with people in poverty takes place on an ever-expanding scale. For your investment in Cuba and elsewhere we thank you!


Jesus is Lord,     

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