To learn more about Salvadoran Pastors Ruth and Alex Orantes, and for information about contributing to support their ministries in El Salvador, please visit

Friday, March 30, 2007

Important News from Shekina

We received the following email from Susy Fuentes on behalf of our friends at Shekina in Santa Ana.

Dearest Friends,

We hope our Good God has kept you all safe, healthy and happy. Wherever you are at this time, please receive warm greetings from your friends at Shekina.

Pastor Ruth asked to share with you some good news and some bad ones. The good one is that our Fifteen Anniversary is right behind the corner and we would love to celebrate it with all our friends and family. So you know that if you could make arrangements to physically join us, we will be very happy to have you here. We know that our hearts and minds are always together, but it will be nice to have you here, at your other home. You will receive an official invitation soon.

Now, Not all is happiness and celebration in our lives. We just experienced a terrible situation last weekend. Early on Saturday morning, some thieves broke into our church and stole our sound system. As you may recall and maybe some of you had seen it, we had to put some internal defenses on the windows because of this situation. Well, somehow this people found another way to get into the church building through the main entrance. Remember the "vitrales" (color glasses) on the main door. They broke them, cut the door and entered. Once there, they cut the locks and open the church. The security at the neighborhood called a lady that lives almost in front of the church and this lady called one of our members. So by 5.30am on Saturday, Pastor Ruth got there with the police but they could not find anything. We think it must have been a team working together because of all the things that they did to enter. Apparently they climbed the wall at the back and jumped into the church using a small water pump that we have there.

We felt so sad and frustrated for this because you all know our dreams. We do not have extra funds, all we are saving is to continue with our project. The equipment was a donation from two our members that are in the United State, working hard to support the church. Pastor Ruth talked to all of us on Sunday and tried to raise our spirits. She was right when she said that we should not feel anger for this people because it is the evil that is using them to put us down. We are not willing to let that happen. However, we must do something to protect our church. This is why, we would like to inform you that in order to do that we will need to use some of the funds that we already have for the community center to build a higher wall around the church with an electric fence on top. It does not sound right, because we want people to see us and feel welcome but we can not afford to keep loosing the gifts that our sisters and brothers provide us with their hard work. Some of these funds came from you, as you share our dreams and want to be part of it. Therefore, we consider that it is necessary that you know about this.

If we are able to protect the church, we could then concentrate in the other project. We thank our Lord for your constant support and care. We would like you to know that we have faith that this just a bump in the road that will not stop us. We will continue working hard toward the completion of the project.

God bless you all, please send our regards to your family and church members.

With all our love, in Jesus Christ...

Susy Fuentes
Shekina Baptist Church
Santa Ana, El Salvador