Fellowship Southwest appeals for volunteers to help churches on U.S./Mexican border
A Cooperative Baptist Fellowship organization focused on the U.S.-Mexico border said it has mission and ministry opportunities for volunteers interested in serving asylum seekers on both sides of the border.
Fellowship Southwest recently announced that churches in the U.S. and in Mexico need help meeting the desperate and rising needs of immigrants.
“Mission opportunities are available for volunteers who want to minister to asylum seekers clustered on both sides of the Mexico-U.S. border,” Jorge Zapata, a pastor and director of Fellowship Southwest’s Immigrant Relief Ministry, said in an appeal published by the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. “Every contact with an immigrant refugee is a gospel encounter.”
Locations where volunteers are needed in the U.S./Mexico include: Brownsville/Matamoros; McAllen/Reynosa; Laredo/Nuevo Laredo; Eagle Pass/Piedras Negras; Del Rio/Acuña; El Paso/Juarez; and Tijuana.
Those who want to help, but cannot physically serve, may contribute financially. Most congregations require $2 a day to feed each refugee, excluding other costs.
“Once a church opens its building as a shelter, the utilities triple, and water, electric and gas bills triple,” Zapata said. “A church in Brownsville saw their electric bill soar to over $1,400, and their water bill climbed to over $500. They also have to pay the city $580 a month to pick up the trash three times a week.”
Individuals and congregations interested in volunteering may contact Zapata at [email protected] Contributions may be donated online.
BWIM accepting mentor program applications
Baptist Women in Ministry is accepting applications for its 2020-21 Mentoring Program.
The program offers women who are new to ministry two years of intentional mentoring with a group of peers, with each group led by an experienced Baptist minister. The groups function as communities of support and guidance to participants. Monthly digital media conversations and three retreats also are provided.
The 2020-21 program is open to Baptist women who have served less than three years in their current areas of ministry, including “churches, chaplaincy, non-profit work and other ‘outside-the-box’ ministry settings,” BWIM said in announcing the opening of the application process. Women serving in ministry longer than three years in a position new to them may also apply.
More than 60 women have participated in the program since it was launched in 2017.