Anxious to reconnect and close the distance growing between them, Randall and Jessica Elliott joined the couple’s marriage enrichment class at First Baptist Church Rockport. Sadly, the lessons taught served to highlight everything they had done wrong. Randall and Jessica lost hope of reconciliation.

Through the ministry of the church, they learned about STCH Ministries Family Counseling and called for an appointment, but there was a waiting list several months long. Neither Randall nor Jessica wanted a divorce, and they certainly did not want to tell family and supporters back home—those who prayed, encouraged and believed in them—that the ministry had wrecked their marriage.

God called Randall and Jessica to volunteer missions in disaster relief in 2016. They sold all of their belongings, packed their three kids into a 5th wheel camper and left home, traveling wherever they were needed. They never expected that the close quarters and demands of ministry life would expose disastrous communication issues.

The Elliotts traveled to Rockport, Texas to help Samaritan’s Purse disaster relief efforts after Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Having served on multiple sites for over a year, spending a month on the Texas coast seemed the next step in their journey. In the beginning, everything happened as expected. Randall spent the days on the site and Jessica cared for their three preschoolers. His efficiency and knack for the role led to a full-time offer to work for one year on the Rockport rebuild project with Samaritan’s Purse.

Randall and Jessica prayed about the possibility. They asked their families and prayer supporters to join with them in prayer. The Elliotts accepted the position; a full year in one place with a steady paycheck would benefit their budget and provide valuable contacts for the future.

The days grew longer for Jessica, with no friends nearby and only small children for company Jessica experienced isolation and loneliness. She fought to find her purpose. Randall recognized the change in his wife and also wrestled with what seemed like an unfair situation. “God, what do you have me down here for? Why do I get to have this dream job and she doesn’t?”

The walls of the camper seemed to close in and created a sensation of captivity rather than coziness. The adventure turned to resentment and every conversation appeared to lead to an argument. After one particularly loud disagreement, then four-year-old Mack asked Jessica, “Why do you talk to Daddy that way?” Heartbroken and discouraged, Jessica considered simply staying in North Carolina with the kids after the family vacation rather than return to Texas.

Finally, they received word that STCH Ministries Counselor, Kelly Harris had an opening. At this point, every conversation between the two of them felt like a confirmation that each no longer loved the other. Yet, they forced themselves to attend the sessions. Kelly asked the couple to remember what brought them together and why had they married in the first place. Remembering those reasons and speaking them out loud brought reconciliation. Hearing Randall say he still loved her and wanted to stay married, gave Jessica comfort. She admitted the same.

The work was not easy, the harmful habits and assumptions created patterns, negative cycles of communication, which kept the arguing as their standard form of communication. Kelly gave them a list of fair fighting rules – something they struggled to use because, in the heat of the moment, hurt feelings held priority over fairness and they forgot their good intentions.

Kelly led the couple to recognize cues that sparked offense in the other and challenged them to remember what they loved about one another. That idea allowed them to find a new perspective. They reminded one another neither meant to hurt the other and to choose words that encouraged true communication. Kelly taught them to stop and express, “This is what I heard you say.” Most of the time, the message received had nothing to do with the intent of the speaker.

Jessica realized that she had become anxious over the state of their marriage and that caused her to attempt to control situations in a manner that made Randall sense she did not trust him. Once they recognized how those emotions created conflict and overshadowed the truth of their commitment to one another, a real change took place in their hearts and minds. The two have changed the way they think about, respond to and speak to one another. The fair fighting rules were not necessary anymore once they recognized negative cycles and change their words before saying hurtful things.

The first time they successfully worked through a disagreement on their own, they stopped arguing and shared what they were truly thinking. This allowed them to solve the issue and enjoy the day together as a family on the beach. “We had an ‘ah-ha’ moment! It worked, we had figured it out. For the first time, I had a bunch of hope!”

Recently, Randall and Jessica encouraged a young friend to seek pre-marital counseling and learn to communicate well before their upcoming marriage. “We knew communication was not our strong point for a long time,” Jessica said. “It didn’t get to a point that we couldn’t handle it until we were all stuck in a camper together with nowhere to go. We hope others can learn from our story.”

For more information about STCH Ministries Family Counseling locations in your area, please visit: https://www.STCHM.org/family-counseling/

Dear Friends,

I hope you are remaining healthy and safe, and are conservatively beginning to get back into some sort of new routine as we start to venture out into public spaces. We all have different thoughts and opinions on COVID-19 and the restrictions it has placed on our lives. But in the midst of it all, I’m prayerful you have had some sort of positive impact in your life. 

We remain thankful and grateful for YOU – as you remain committed to STCH Ministries. Each one of you impacts our ministry, and we are so thankful! 
 

I’m thankful for all of you every time I pray, and it’s always a prayer full of joy.
– Philippians 1:4
 The Ministry Continues because of YOU!

A PLACE TO BE SAFE

We currently have 10 moms and 27 of their children in our care at Homes for Families on the Marshall Ranch Campus. It’s been a wonderful opportunity to see the impact in the lives of our moms, children and our staff who work with them – especially
during the COVID-19 season. Homes for Families is designed to be a resource for single mothers and their children who are facing a crisis and need help transitioning into independent living.

Our hope is that each mother will transition into a successful, independent future with her family as well as a more intimate relationship with Jesus Christ.

We recently asked how COVID-19 has impacted the lives of those living and thriving on the campus. 


The generosity of donors and volunteers who pray over this ministry makes these stories a testament to God’s glory and grace.

Julia – Resident
COVID-19 has allowed me to spend more time with my daughter. It allowed me to grow because I wasn’t busy thinking about the next opportunity, such as the next weekend pass or going into town for appointments and errands. I think more personal growth has happened and it’s brought a spirit of gratitude that’s deeper than it was ever before. The virus has affected me in a positive way. Praise God!


Kayla – Resident
I believe God used COVID-19 to grow me as a person. It has reminded me to be more grateful for the little things and what is really important in my life. Also, it pushed me to draw closer to God which resulted in me reaching a higher level of maturity that I have not seen in myself before. It showed me to be content in every circumstance whether good or bad, whether in plenty or in want. I am thankful for the growth I received out of it. 


Felessia – Resident
Before I had multiple break downs due to my schedule being crammed full 7-days a week with no rest. School, gym, boy’s baseball practice, kids’ school, work, etc. I was crying out, even while singing at church – I would break down, I was weighed down by the pressure of life.

I was on the go constantly so when everything got shut down – I was FORCED to be still. The Lord quieted my soul. I got the revelation that He gives us the POWER to do what pleases Him. One of the reasons why I was so weary before was because I was “doing life” without Him. I made my own decisions. It has been a heart change and a new mindset. I am experiencing the blessing and the peace of walking in TOTAL obedience. I am thankful for this time of lockdown.

A WORD FROM OUR CHILD CARE STAFF
 

This time during COVID-19 has worked in our favor! We have been able to be more hands-on with each child and minister to them by walking alongside them; we see them watching and learning throughout this challenging season.


Debbie’s kids went from saying a lazy and nonchalant “Mssssssss….” to a more respectful and personal “Mrs. Kim“.  The children are being more intentional with relationships. This is such a beautiful healing process and it’s just the beginning! 

The children witnessed first-hand how much the other children mattered to them, they were missing one another (due to social distancing) and couldn’t wait to be reunited again!

As we have begun to slowly introduce limited play and school time together – the reuniting of the children and the SMILES returned! The whispers of “I missed you” were coming from all directions. The children realized they didn’t like to be divided, but together as one big family!

We have been able to see some good through this time of uncertainty and we are very thankful for it! 

LET’S GET PERSONAL WITH STAFF
(How COVID-19 has made an impact)

Debra Rodriguez – Resident Coordinator, Phase I
Personally, I was initially mildly concerned about the virus but overcame that quickly. I was content with the quarantine; not out of fear but finally having a valid excuse not to socially interact outside of the house. My social anxiety calmed down and it was wonderful not having to worry about it. The quarantine gave me a chance to deepen my relationship with Christ and prayed for the same to happen worldwide.


Josephine Nelson – Resident Coordinator, Phase I
The greatest effect I’ve seen during the COVID-19 season has been the stride in which the moms have handled it. They have taken it by the tail and embraced it without complaint. They have utilized this time to grow with God and their children and get grounded more in His love. I have enjoyed walking through this process with them and assisting them in strengthening their relationships with God and their children.

Though some restrictions have been lifted, and people have access to stores and resources, our Homes for Families ministry still has needs.

If you would like to purchase items to stock the Commissary,
please click the link below:

SHOPPING LIST

This link is the AMAZON SHOPPING LIST. The item(s) you order will ship DIRECTLY to the campus! We are still not accepting visitors to the campus, therefore we appreciate the shipment of donated items.

Thank you again for your consistent and steadfast commitment to our ministry. You remain vital to sustaining our ministry and those we serve. With sincere gratitude,

Kyle Luke
Vice President of Development and Communications
STCH Ministries

Nikki Bazil, housemom at Homes for Children’s Hope Cottage, realized two things: how fast her high school boys spent their allowances and how fast the few days left before graduation raced past. She knew she needed to do more to prepare them for life after Boothe Campus.

Nikki shared her concerns with other housemoms and Victoria Gordon of Brown Cottage knew her double major of finance and accounting equipped her to meet this need. The two moms brainstormed different ideas, prayed together and a new course for youth emerged. Money Matters is a monthly class open for sixth-graders to seniors.

The ladies presented practical lessons with plenty of hands-on applications to real-world situations. The January meeting focused on introductions and hearing what topics attracted the students’ attention. Subjects such as buying a car, renting an apartment even buying a house topped the list. Victoria focused the February class time on an overview of the actual cost of living prices.

She paced off 450 square feet inside the meeting room to approximate the size of an efficiency apartment in the nearby town of Beeville. As Victoria explained that small space would cost them $675 each month after the initial payment of nearly $1500, the students’ eyes widened and mouths dropped open. Most of them had not thought about adding up the application fees, a security deposit, an administrative fee as well as the first and last month’s rent before they even moved into an apartment of their own. The costs of utilities and convenience charges such as garbage pickup, internet service and cell phone contracts brought further thoughtful looks from the students.

Nikki passed out pencils, notebooks and calculators. She instructed the students to brainstorm menus for meals. Later they added toiletries, cleaning supplies and estimated the total cost. Once they decided on meals, students listed out the ingredients and created shopping lists. Victoria took the lists and approximated what they needed for an entire month. The students’ original estimations for the total price of a month’s supplies ranged from $150-$225 per week.

One weekend, the housemoms took four of the seniors to Walmart and had them price every item on the list. Nikki explained, “Victoria even showed them how to shop using the unit price on the grocery labels. Things we all take for granted but something desperately needed for this generation.” Once all the numbers came together, the final bill amounted to $800.

Victoria remembered the students’ astonishment by the high number and reminded them, “This was for just one person for one month. We had to do it that way so that they could see the numbers I’m giving them are real numbers.”

Addressing the stark truth about the high cost of living, Nikki and Victoria proposed to help the students learn to save money using their allowances as a guide. Using the youngest participating student’s allowance as a starting point, the housemoms explained the process of saving money for the future. They figured he could have a nice sum of money to use toward the costs of living or even his own car by the time he graduated if he set aside half of the allowance he received until that day.

Nikki and Victoria, encouraged by the students’ enthusiastic response to the lessons presented so far, built an outline to cover items specific to situations the students need to know. Nikki’s innate people skills enabled her to reach out to community resources. Nikki spoke with staff at STCH Ministries’ headquarters and discovered employees with banking experience. She requested someone to come and talk about how to open a checking account, what it takes to save money and how to set up a savings account. She contacted car dealerships looking for an expert to explain the process of buying a car – explaining extended warranties, GAP insurance and all the other things that come up when signing the financial paperwork.

The first thing everyone understood they needed to know revolved around how to live on what they earned. Many students on campus did not want to go to college. The housemoms clarified college was only one way to plan for the future; certifications, on the job training or an associate’s degree also sufficed. Each student needed to think now about what they wanted to do in the future and plan for that. Nikki and Victoria reiterated, “Figure out where you want to be and we’ll figure out how to get you there.”

Housemoms on the Homes for Children campus fill every aspect of the role of “mom.” Like every household, moms do more than cook and clean, they prepare their children for a successful life on their own. After only a few meetings, students now grasp that adult life requires more effort than they originally imagined; they also know their housemoms remain committed to ensuring they will be prepared when that time comes.

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your continued support of STCH Ministries – not only through monetary contributions but through prayers, volunteering and donations of food and supplies. We are grateful to you! 


Each one of you impacts our ministry, and we are so thankful!  

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
 The Ministry Continues because of YOU!

We are SO EXCITED to announce with the help of our Samuel’s Fund Sponsors, we have the largest high school graduating class since the inception of the program in the Dominican Republic (DR). 

We have 22 high school graduates!

Many of these young people would not have achieved this goal without the sponsorship funding and the encouragement and support that is invested in each one by their sponsors, the DR Team, church and their families.  

How much better to get wisdom than gold, to get insight rather than silver!” – Proverbs 16:16
Introducing the Graduates from our Program:

What’s NEXT for our Seniors? As our Graduates transition out of the Samuel’s Fund Program, some are eligible to move into the sponsored-college program.

If they are eligible for this program, their current sponsor(s) are given the opportunity to continue alongside their journey and assist in this amazing opportunity. 

If the current sponsor decides not to continue, the student is placed into the Program and waits, by faith, for the opportunity to obtain their college degree by another sponsor.

What is the CLEP Fund Progam?

The Christian Leadership and Education Project (CLEP) is a sponsorship program that matches sponsors with Dominican college students.

The cost of a college education in the Dominican Republic is about $100 a month. You can sponsor this full amount or become a co-sponsor for $50 per month. As a CLEP Sponsor, you help develop independent young adults who impact their culture for Christ. 

Every sponsorship dollar goes directly to meet the needs of our sponsored children (not towards administrative costs).

For more details of the CLEP Program, or to sponsor a student – click here: SPONSOR A COLLEGE STUDENT

What is the Samuel’s Fund Program?

Samuel’s Fund is a sponsorship program named after the Old Testament prophet who heard God’s call as a child and became a great leader, used by God in mighty ways. With the support of sponsors, Samuel’s Fund helps orphans and at-risk children, age four through high school, in the Dominican Republic develop spiritually, mentally and socially, allowing them to one day become Christian leaders in their communities.For $35 a month, a Samuel’s Fund sponsor brings hope and help to a child who desperately needs it.

Every sponsorship dollar goes directly to meet the needs of our sponsored children (not towards administrative costs).

For more details of the Samuel’s Fund Program, or to become a sponsor – click here: SPONSOR A CHILD TODAY!

Thank you again for your consistent and steadfast commitment to our ministry. You remain vital to sustaining our ministry and those we serve. With sincere gratitude,

Kyle Luke
Vice President of Development and Communications
STCH Ministries


Dear Friends,

I hope you have remained safe and healthy during the continued season of COVID-19. As we begin to see restrictions removed, and the start of businesses reopening, we want to reiterate our deepest gratitude for those who have continued to support STCH Ministries. Not only through monetary contributions, but through prayers, volunteers and donations of food and supplies.   

Each one of you impacts our ministry, and we are so thankful! The Ministry Continues because of YOU!

As we head into the middle of May 2020 – we have exciting things happening at Homes for Children on the Boothe Campus in Pettus, TX. We have a group of high school seniors getting ready to graduate from Pettus High School, and we want to introduce you to these young adults.
  Unfortunately, this was a senior year no one could anticipate would happen. Many senior activities and events were canceled, due to COVID-19. And although those events and memories didn’t happen – we are still SO proud and excited to be a part of their lives while they’ve been on campus. They have shown resilience and perseverance!   Introducing our graduating Seniors at Homes for Children (HFC):
 

Brandon – 2 years at HFC

His favorite part about being at the campus has been the relationship
he has built with his houseparents.

Kimani – 2 years at HFC
His favorite part about being at the campus is all the people he has gotten
to know; mainly his houseparents.

Maria – 1 1/2 years at HFC

Her favorite part about being at the campus is the relationship
she has built with her houseparents.

Sophia – 2 1/2 years at HFC

Her favorite part about being at the campus are the relationships
she has built with everyone.

Taheen – 4 years at HFC

Her favorite part about being at the campus has been finding people
that love her and the relationships she has built with them.
As you can see, the most consistent impact our students receive from being at
Homes for Children are – RELATIONSHIPS.

We are privileged and blessed to have the consistent Presence of God throughout our ministry. From the very beginning when Mrs. Laura Boothe first approached Rev. Jess Lunsford about her calling to start a children’s home on her land, she approached him in faith and because of their trusting relationship.

Relationships are a key part of our ministry.
Our relationship with YOU impacts those we serve by providing the
resources needed for healing and hope.    

What Happens after Students Graduate?

We want to thank everyone who is a Cottage Sponsor and donor who help provide for our kids every day through your support of Homes for Children. Once our kids graduate from high school, STCH Ministries and YOU, continue to play an important role in their lives.

We help prepare our high schoolers for their transition to post-grad life – whether they choose to pursue college, technical school or work.

If they graduate from high school, while in our care, we provide scholarships to college or technical school as long as they maintain good grades and follow the guidelines of our College Scholarship Program.

The College Transition Coordinator provides support and accountability to our college students and helps them with housing, registration, textbooks, financial aid and much more.

If they don’t go to college or technical school, we help them locate job opportunities, prepare resumes, provide transportation to interviews, financial assistance for rent until they can support themselves and many other needs.  

We are grateful God provides steadfast and faithful supporters who assist in providing a consistent source of encouragement, motivation and support when our kids leave our care and move to independence. THANK YOU for your SUPPORT by equipping these young adults to be independent and self-reliant.


A NOTE TO THE GRADUATING SENIORS

If you would like to send an encouraging note to any of our high school seniors, please click here: CLASS OF 2020 and we’ll make sure they receive your note.
 


COMMISSARY

There are still opportunities to help stock our Commissary for both Homes for Children and Homes for Families. Food and supplies are hard to receive at times, though our families are taken care of, options are limited.

If you’d like to donate to the Commissary, please click here STOCK THE COMMISSARY.
 
 
Thank you again for your consistent and steadfast commitment to our ministry. You remain vital to sustaining our ministry and those we serve.   With sincere gratitude,

Kyle Luke
Vice President of Development and Communications
STCH Ministries

 

Dear Friends,
Through this season of COVID-19, we have been working to keep you connected and informed of how The Ministry Continuesthrough God’s Good Works.

We also remain grateful for your continued partnership with us through the generous giving of your time, prayers and finances. We know you have also been impacted, and since we’re unable to visit you in person, we would like to hear from you. We want to know how you are doing, especially how you’re coping and dealing with COVID-19, including any specific prayer requests. It would be our privilege to have the opportunity to specifically and personally pray for you. Please consider sharing your prayer needs, and anything else you’d like to share, by sending an email to prayers@stchm.org (or click the link).

Your prayers and any other details you share with us – will be kept confidential.

We hope you will share with us and let us be part of your life – as you have been a part of so many of the lives in our ministry. As it states in Ephesians 3:16, NLT: “I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit.

What are the Children up to?

Our children, at Homes for Children, continue to stay busy and active as they adjust to life on campus 24/7. As they work to maintain their academics by doing their schoolwork, they are also enjoying activities outside, learning new cooking skills, and leading devotionals. Some of our cottages are adding a new “class” to their schedule: COOKING CLASS. In Hope Cottage, which consists of 5 boys (ages 11-18), each boy picks a day and a meal to cook each week. They use cookbooks or the internet to find a recipe.

Fried chicken anyone? Tyson was the chef for this meal. The menu he selected was: fried chicken, sautéed asparagus and mashed potatoes. Other meals included meatloaf, pork chops and other healthy options. This has been a great learning experience and life-skill for the kids. It has also given them new appreciation and gratitude for their houseparents. 

Additionally, not only do the boys cook once a week, but they must also lead a devotional at dinner time. One of our boys recently led a devotion focused on “A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.” – Proverbs 22:1 It’s wonderful to be a part of the biblical guidance and lessons they learn as they come to the table, not only for dinner – but also for the nourishment of their hearts and souls.

In addition to homework, cooking and devotionals, the children are also staying active outside. Our creative houseparents came up with fun games using sidewalk chalk. The games involved following directions, reinforcing math skills and generating creativity – all while having fun! They used sidewalk chalk that was donated by After School Center for Education (ACE). This program, in Pettus Independent School District, provides morning and after school tutoring, snacks and educational activities for two hours after school Monday – Friday to some of our children, when school is in session.

Faith & Work | Faith & Finances

Our Faith & Work | Faith & Finances ministries continue to reach out and engage with students via online classes. And one of the best parts about it is – it doesn’t matter where you are located, now that we are online, you can join us anywhere! Recently, new classes and classes that were postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, began meeting in Corpus Christi and San Antonio. The response to the classes has been overwhelmingly positive and energizing for students. In a few weeks, Houston will begin hosting Faith & Work | Faith & Finances classes online. 

Beginning the first week in May, potential students will have the choice of attending either a morning or evening Faith & Work | Faith & Finances class online. 

If you, your church group, or someone you know would like to attend either of these classes, click here to register: SIGN ME UP!

ONLINE ACCESS COMING SOON: Our Faith & Work | Faith & Finances teams are currently working to develop an online learning academy that will provide educational resources to potential Faith & Work students. This learning platform will be available to anyone, anytime and anywhere.

A Client Gives Back

We recently received a special phone call from a former Family Counseling client, Brittany. She was seeing one of our counselors for severe social anxiety, grief and low self-esteem. She called her former counselor to let her know she is now off all of her anxiety medications and she’s helping others in her church who also struggle with anxiety. 

Brittany has started a support group in her church for moms who have had miscarriages. And she is working as an in-home caregiver to an elderly patient and absolutely loves it! Brittany shared how much she appreciated the tools she learned through our Family Counseling ministry. And knows she wouldn’t be where she is now – without the Christ-Centered counseling she received. We are blessed to hear the success stories from clients when they leave our care as they continue to move forward with knowledge, lessons and Biblical truths they learned through our ministry. Even helping others along the way. God works all things for good!

Words of Encouragement

Our staff is working hard to help The Ministry Continue during these difficult times. Additionally, our children, moms, clients, and all those we serve are adjusting to the challenges of new changes in routines and schedules. If you would like to send our staff and those we serve – words of encouragement – you can do so by clicking here.

Please know we are continuing to pray for God’s sovereign protection to surround you and your family.
We are here to share hope and heal hearts, and we are grateful for your ongoing support. 

With sincere gratitude,

Kyle Luke
Vice President of Development and Communications
STCH Ministries

Thank you for being the trunk of a tree that sustains so many branches—being mindful of needs in so many different places,” wrote Ruth from the Dominican Republic, mother of five and Director of the school in the village of Hatillo.

The Covid-19 pandemic has shattered life in the Dominican Republic. Abruptly, quarantine was strictly enforced with jail time, as 90% of individuals lost their jobs. Although Americans have experienced anxiety and loss due to the pandemic, it doesn’t compare with the terror of impending starvation.

How do we minister to 299 sponsored children who are quarantined in their homes, disbursed throughout the island? STCH Ministries swiftly mobilized to address their emotional and spiritual needs, as well as the interrupted education of the children. The Dominican team, led by Rebeca Dinzey, began an innovative approach to meet this need. As a condition of their scholarship, our 25 CLEP college students “give back” 10 hours per month in support of younger Samuel’s Fund kids. Promptly, each college student was assigned 2-3 Samuel’s Fund children. They now call them once a week, ask about their individual situations, pray and share a scripture with them and help them with homework received over the internet or the WhatsApp platform. When one CLEP student, Vladimir, discovered a family who couldn’t afford internet, he began paying for this service himself! CLEP students send weekly reports:

“We have begun reading a chapter each week of James, and I call them the next week and quiz them. They enjoy our visits.”

“I video chat with my students. We talk about their homework. I encourage their mother because she is very overwhelmed.”

“My student says she is not a Christian because she is afraid of God. I am helping her understand how to have a relationship with Him.”

Through the generous support from many individuals to date, we have received $16,710. STCH Ministries also began to meet the physical needs of food for the children and their families. Our concern also included the ladies who cook and care for our mission teams, the teachers in our Christian schools and the orphanages. We quickly contacted the Bravo grocery chain and purchased palettes of 9 basic food items—milk, rice, beans, sugar, oatmeal and spaghetti, oil, cornmeal and tomato paste.

Russell has directed the team in the logistics of this effort. He hired 2 trucks. He re-purposed our team lodging, Koinonia house to store the food, and organize into smaller packets for each family. Dr. Francisco supervised and guided the delivery process to ensure safety and health for everyone. Rebeca, Valentina and Maria identified and called the neediest families, “We have a packet of food for you!” Assigned a date and time, they came for pick up at the IBQ compound. As the packets of food are delivered, time is spent with each one, reflecting on God’s promises, and praying for their families. We anticipate we will deplete this food in 4-5 weeks.

Ruth’s reference of a tree with branches was a beautiful analogy of STCH Ministries. Rooted in God’s promises to supply ALL of our needs, our “branches” continue to support children and families–providing Christian counseling, homes for children and families, pastoral ministry, classes on the impact of faith on finances and work, in addition to the work in the Dominican Republic. During this pandemic, the ministry continues.
 

Bendiciones, 

Joanna Berry
Joanna Berry
Vice President of Family and International Ministries
STCH Ministries

As we continue to adapt to the daily restrictions that COVID-19 has placed on our lives, we may feel we’re repeating the same day over and over again. We tend to ask ourselves: “What day is it?” “How many snacks have I eaten today?” “What should we binge watch next on Netflix?”
  And although we are ready for our days not to feel like they’re on repeat, day after day – we must remember: God’s Word never changes. His Word remains the same day after day, year after year. And as followers of Jesus, we are to be a people of hope.

Therefore, we want to remind you, that though your day may feel the same, know that God remains the same. He is worthy of our trust and hope. “Be of good cheer,” our Lord said, “I have overcome the world” – John 16:33 

And for that, we continue to have hope in our Lord; and we continue to be thankful for your continued commitment to STCH Ministries. God continues to work in mighty ways. He continues to open doors for our ministry so that our MINISTRY CONTINUES! We are GRATEFUL for you!

The Good News: We are continuing to help those we serve as they deal with life’s challenges.

In these unprecedented days, we remain encouraged by the light of Christ. On Good Friday, two young girls at Homes for Children were led to an everlasting relationship – they accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, by their houseparents! 

Good Friday indeed…He is Risen, Risen indeed! Seek the Kingdom of God, and you will find Him.

Our ministries are still accepting new residents and clients.

HOMES FOR CHILDREN, on the Boothe Campus, is continuing to serve children. It’s a place to call home. Children live with houseparents, and each cottage functions much like a normal household, with meals in the home and the family enjoying activities together. Children attend public school and local churches and participate in sports and a variety of life-building activities. For more information about the ministry and admission requirements, please call 361.375.2101 or click to apply online.

HOMES FOR FAMILIES, on the Marshall Ranch Campus, is continuing to serve single moms and their children. It’s a place to be safe. Homes for Families is a resource for single mothers and their children who are facing a crisis and need help transitioning into independent living. Our Marshall Ranch Campus provides a safe, comfortable setting for mothers and their children to begin a new chapter, while our staff help address their physical, emotional and spiritual needs. For more information about the ministry and admission requirements, please call 361.645.3005 or click to apply online.

FAMILY COUNSELING provides care when individuals, couples and families need help sorting through the challenges of life. All our counselors are professionally trained and distinctively Christian. We are continuing to see current and new clients through virtual counseling. If you, or anyone you know, needs to speak with a counselor, please call 833.83STCHM or 833.837.8246

Family Support – Our Family Support ministry connects needs with resources. Whenever a family has needs that can be served by one or more of our ministries, Family Support helps them understand what we offer and how to begin. We recently had the opportunity of blessing Maggie, a member of one of our church partners. Maggie recently lost her job due to COVID-19 and her husband’s hours were significantly reduced to working one day per week. She has also been taking care of her 3 teenage grandchildren since their birth. Maggie’s faith in God has not waivered and knows God will continue supplying their every need. Maggie was so grateful for the groceries and showed her appreciation for STCH Ministries during this time.

International – Dominican Republic CLEP Students – The Christian Leadership and Education Project (CLEP) is a sponsorship program that matches sponsors with Dominican college students. The students receive financial help for educational needs, such as college tuition, books and supplies. Additionally, each CLEP student is required to contribute a minimum of 10 hours a month in ministry to younger Samuel’s Fund children (also sponsored by donors) as tutors and mentors. During this time of quarantine, our CLEP students are still required to invest in children. Every week, they call 2-3 children to build a friendship, help with homework and share devotional time. This is a wonderful blessing to see students helping students.

Words of Encouragement – Our staff has been working hard to help The Ministry Continue during these difficult times. Additionally, our children, moms, clients and all those we serve are adjusting to the challenges of new changes in routines and schedules. If you would like to send our staff and those we serve – words of encouragement – you can do so by clicking here.

Please know we are continuing to pray for God’s sovereign protection to surround you and your family.

We are here to share hope and heal hearts, and we are grateful for your ongoing support.  With sincere gratitude,

Kyle Luke
Vice President of Development and Communications
STCH Ministries


God does not waste anything; not a moment, not a feeling, not a word and certainly not our obedience. Kellie Williams gives testimony to this truth. She has taught in STCH Ministries’ Faith & Work, formerly Jobs for Life, for six years and has seen God work in her life, the lives of her students and her family’s life without fail.

Kellie discovered a passion for working with women early in her marriage. Her husband, a merchant mariner, spent long stretches of time out at sea during which Kellie developed friendships with ladies from her church. Those friendships showed her the strength and beauty of bonds with Christ-like sisters. From them, she learned the advantage of helping other women as a way to help her deal with the loneliness while her husband was away.

Trained as a teacher, Kellie applied her skills in the church through the leading of Bible studies. Eventually, she followed God’s leading, quit teaching in the public-school arena and went back to school for a certificate of ministry which she put to work writing and teaching Bible studies for women at her church, Second Baptist of Corpus Christi.

Kellie knew about STCH Ministries Family Counseling through her mom, Dottie Chiles. Dottie worked as a counselor in the Corpus office after retiring from a career as a school counselor. In July of 2014, Kellie attended a luncheon where Jimmy Rodriguez, the director for STCH Ministries Jobs for Life | Faith & Finances, gave the keynote speech. As she listened to Jimmy’s explanation of STCH Ministries’ commitment to helping families learn the skills necessary to better their financial situations and provide stability, Kellie knew God wanted her to be a part of the process. “God clearly impressed me with the understanding that this was His next step for my life.” Her grand love for women and helping them compelled her to approach Jimmy with an offer to teach classes.

Teaching the concepts of Jobs for Life brought an unexpected benefit. Kellie’s daughter Maddie spiraled into a depression after bullied during her teenage years and Kellie realized that many of the topics presented in the curriculum applied to Maddie’s situation. The family connection to STCH Ministries led Maddie to counseling and on a mission trip to the Dominican Republic which God used to change Maddie’s life. “I did not know this in the beginning, as I volunteered, God blessed my family. I helped other women but God allowed me to also help my daughter through this program,” Kellie said.

In 2018, STCH Ministries replaced the Jobs for Life program after creating their own curriculum called Faith & Work. Kellie taught one of the first classes of the new material. “Faith & Work puts work in a very positive light as something God means for us to do. It also emphasizes our uniqueness as people,” she explained. Kellie appreciated the emphasis on an individual’s inherent value as God created them and she enjoyed the process of helping women discover work that suits their concerns and skills through personality assessment and interest inventories.

Kellie believed the information about goals and plans and how to achieve them brought the first glimmer of hope to many women’s lives. Kellie described a common situation, “Too many women have these dreams but feel like there’s no way to get there and they give up.” The lessons taught them to make smart goals by breaking things down into achievable steps. This gave them skills applicable to the rest of their lives. Sometimes, merely reaching goals did not suffice to create lasting change, the ladies needed to learn how to overcome obstacles.

The material covering this topic explained forgiveness, once one accepted Jesus’s forgiveness they learned to extend forgiveness through what Jesus did for them. When people made peace with their past through Jesus and understood the power of forgiveness, they viewed their goals in a different light; “This is achievable! I do not have to be bound by labels others have given me in the past.”

After students realized their uniqueness they learned to set goals and overcome their past, the next section taught about working together. Kellie presented lessons on how to get along with others, be a leader, listen well and handle conflict. As she summed up the concepts presented in Faith & Work, Kellie declared, “It’s really taking work and flipping it over as to what society says it is versus what God says it is. That’s it in a nutshell. It ends on how to clearly shine at work so that you can keep moving up and reach your goals.”

Kellie looks forward to teaching her fifteenth class in the fall of 2020. Nearly twenty-five years after discovering her enthusiasm for women’s ministry, she knows God’s economy makes use of every part of her life. She realizes, “God sends people. The same way He sends me to help people through Faith & Work, He sends people to take care of my kids wherever they are.”

For information on Faith & Works classes near you, please visit our website to find email contact information for the office nearest you: click here

The COVID-19 virus continues to create inconvenience, change and adjustment as we navigate these uncertain times.