The Friendship Mission

22Mar12

We recently spent a few nights at Asunción’s Misión de Amistad, or “Friendship Mission.” The mission was founded in 1953 as a health clinic, and today includes a primary and secondary school, a nursing school, and a church.

Misión de Amistad

The Friendship Mission

The price for our room and board at the mission was a sermon – our first in Paraguay and our first in Spanish! We based our sermon on Romans 8:24-25:

For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.

We picked this verse because we’ve seen that Paraguay and the US have many problems in common. For instance, as in the United States, medical care is very expensive, and many Paraguayans go without health insurance. As with women in the US, Paraguayan women struggle to achieve equal representation in government and other areas of the workforce. And, like the US, Paraguay faces a crisis of unemployment and financial insecurity.

People in the US and Paraguay dream of overcoming these healthcare, gender equality, and unemployment challenges. But what keeps us hoping for what we do not see? James and I observed in our sermon that even if we don’t yet see the societal changes we hope for, if we look closely, we can often find hints and clues as to how those changes might come to pass. For example, the nursing program at the Friendship Mission gives us hope because it provides first-rate medical training for the next generation of Paraguayan medical professionals, and also gives the largely female student population access to a secure career path.

Misión de Amistad Templo

The church sanctuary at the Friendship Mission

In short, though it can be difficult to continue hoping and working for the changes we can’t yet see, hints and clues of what is possible abound. And those hints and clues give us the patience to keep hoping.

Learn more about the Friendship Mission: English | Spanish

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5 Responses to “The Friendship Mission”

  1. 1 Robert and Sallie Kintner

    Sallie and I were missionaries in Paraguay 1961-1964. I am both a minister and a musician. I started some small choirs in several of the churches and played organ recitals on the Hammond organ in the church (it was brand new) at Friendship Mission as well as preaching and leading worship services in several of the churches. I also developed a large (more than 200) member choir for the Billy Graham Crusade that came to Asuncion during those years. Our ministry in Paraguay was cut short because of medical problems with one of our children. The George Wiley’s were there during those years and I believe still live in Paraguay. We still support the work in Paraguay through gifts and an endowed “Kintner” fund (established by one of my students) which provides funds.

    Bob Kintner

    • Dear Bob,

      Thank you so much for getting in touch! It is a real blessing to hear from some of the people who have helped lay the groundwork for the church in Paraguay as it is today. I´d say that your time and musical efforts have really had a great impact: we have a number of musicians these days in the church (including a pastor who teaches music M-F), and at our recent all-church encounter, church members brought their instruments or sung along during the worship service. What a great musical legacy the disciples church in Paraguay has to draw on. Thank you for your service!

      Many blessings for you and Sallie,
      James

  2. Yep
    Hoped for but not seen except in imagination.
    Nice point of perspective. Finding similarities.


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