Roatan Episcopal Church Ministry Update, June 2016

Bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God

Colossians 1:10 (NIV)


As we shared with you before, we certainly experienced a Holy Week and Easter under our new roof; what a blessing to continue receiving the Holy Spirit at Pentecost with the improving of our Church building. We feel so very blessed! Thank you to all of you who have contributed with your financial and physical support and most of all, your prayers.

Iglesia vacia


At the end of April we ordered all the doors for the church building, and we expect these to be installed by the end of July.

We also plan to order the windows very soon and to complete the rest  of the construction, which includes:

  • stucco the interior walls
  • pour concrete floors
  • install ceramic floor tiles
  • some electrical work, and
  • painting

As you can see, we still have quite a bit of work to do before the church is completed.

On May 8 we celebrated Mother’s Day and also had a special pastoral visit from our Bishop Lloyd Allen, who confirmed six members and received one as an Episcopalian.


We had the privilege of participating with a member of each congregation in the National Synod that took place in Tegucigalpa on May 28.


After this our family of four took the opportunity, while we were on the mainland, to visit my (Nelson’s) family in my hometown, Siguatepeque. At the same time I (Nelson) was invited to preach at my home church. This was a privilege.


Please continue to pray for:        

  1. Continued financial support for the next years as we continue to serve the Lord on Roatán, Honduras.
  2. Our congregations: St. Peter by the Sea in Brick Bay and Emmanuel in Coxen Hole.
  3. Short Term mission teams that are planning to come to Roatán next year from Ontario.
  4. The ongoing construction in Coxen Hole – doors are ordered and are to be installed by the end of July.
  5. Gerardo and Cindy, our youth leaders that God has called to take responsibility for guiding the young people.
  6. Spiritual and practical outreach in the local communities.
  7. Nelson, who was asked by the Bishop to be part of a team helping those entering into the ordination process.
  8. An evangelistic outreach that will take place in Roatán (July 29-30) and all the churches involved, that many can be healed, be freed, and receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour. A ministry team from the USA is coming to partner with the churches in Roatán.
  9. The Episcopal Church in Honduras, for the process toward self-sufficiency by the end of 2019.

Thank you very much for your prayers and continued support that enable us to continue in this ministry.

May God continue to richly bless you.

Nelson and Kara Mejia

Empowering the Church.

Learning, Growing and Serving.


A sincere thank you from Belize!

The following is from a recent letter sent by Indira Spain to Beverly Morell. Indira is the mother of Belize scholarship student, Anique Hernandez, and also a teacher at St. Hilda’s school.
Thank you so much ms. Bev.  I am eternally indebted to you and your church group. I pray showers of blessings on you now and always. You are really leaving a positive mark on my child.  Thank you once again for your support.  Anique is more than excited about writing you so I will email that letter to you sometime over the weekend. Hope that you’re having a productive trip and I’ll be praying for travelling graces for you until you return safely home. Have a pleasant night.
With love,
Indira Spain

Plans being made for refugee family from Liberia

Plans being made for refugee family from Liberia

The Archdeaconry of Fredericton refugee sponsorship committee has been waiting for months to bring a Syrian refugee family to Fredericton. A couple weeks ago we were advised that the backlog of applications is now so large (thousands!) that it would be well into 2017 before we could even think of being matched with a Syrian family.

It’s disappointing. However, there are literally millions of other refugees, some of whom have been waiting in crowded camps for years. We were told that, if we would agree to sponsor an African family instead, it could take only a few more weeks or months before they would step off the plane in Fredericton.

Liberia is on the west coast of Africa

Liberia is on the west coast of Africa

The committee, made up of 10 parishes and the cathedral, prayed, discussed and decided to help a family of four from Liberia in West Africa now, instead of waiting until 2017 for a Syrian family. Our application is being reviewed by the federal government, and we are waiting for news.

We have a few details: the father is Phillip, age 47, who has worked as a farm hand;  his wife is Esther, age 50, a trader, probably selling fruit, fish or charcoal in an outdoor market; her children are a son, Arene, age 19, and a daughter, Catherine, age 16.

The family profile does not indicate how long they have been living in the refugee camp, situated in the neighbouring country of Côte d’Ivoire. Knowing there have been two civil wars in Liberia, we suspect it might be years. The parents have been subjected to violence and torture.

We do not yet know their religion, but the file says they can speak English and French plus their native language called Grebo. Their educational levels are very low, especially given the ages of the children. Conditions in the camp are not good concerning health care, dental care, education, etc.

If our application succeeds, it will be a huge challenge for this family to adapt to life in Canada.

If our application succeeds, it will be a huge challenge for this family to adapt to life in Canada. Think of our weather (the average annual temperature in Liberia is 28C!), the different culture here, their lack of education, and limited work experience. It is possible that they may never have enjoyed 24/7 electricity, running water, and all the amenities we take for granted. Life here may be overwhelming for them.

That is why the committee continues to prepare to welcome and help them. Financial donations have reached about $22,000  — we need $30,000 to look after them for one year. Thanks to you, donations of furnishings are going extremely well. (See list of remaining items sought.)

The Missions Committee at the cathedral will keep you posted on the progress of the archdeaconry’s application. Please pray for this refugee family and for our efforts to bring them out of violence and misery to a safe home in peaceful Canada.

FURNISHINGS LIST  (remaining items needed as of June 12, 2016)

LIVING ROOM – modern TV (not the heavy, old, tube-type)
BEDROOMS – mattress and box spring for a single bed, mattress and box spring for a 54-inch bed
DINING/KITCHEN – muffin tin
MISCELLANEOUS – chair for computer desk, radio, alarm clock, wall clock, combs and brushes
HOUSEHOLD SUPPLIES – broom and dustpan, sponge mop, bucket, cleaning rags, recycling bin

Items can be dropped off at Cathedral Memorial Hall during business hours.

If you wish to help support the family, you can provide a cheque, payable to Christ Church Parish Church, noting Refugee Fund on the memo line. The treasurer at that church is maintaining an account on behalf of all the parishes taking part in the sponsorship.

Ann Deveau

What’s New with Belize? (Spring 2016)

What’s new with Belize?

Belize occupies not only a chunk of land in Central America, but also a special spot in the hearts of dozens of people from the cathedral who took part in mission trips there in 2005, 2007, 2010 and 2013.

“Our work as a church is to reach out and serve our brothers and sisters in Christ,” says Beverly Morell who led the four mission teams. “Belize is a wonderful example of one important way we do just that!”

Although a cathedral team has not gone south recently —  largely due to the falling Canadian dollar which made the trip much too expensive — connections between the cathedral and a tiny Anglican parish in Belize continue.

For example, approximately $2,000 is sent annually to help St. Hilda’s Anglican School. It’s an elementary school (pop. 200) in a poor area in western Belize where three of the teams volunteered. The funds pay for school supplies as well as badly needed repairs such as fixing broken toilets and gaping holes in classroom ceilings.

The money for school supplies, including books, printer ink cartridges, paper and coloured pencils, is appreciated by the teachers. For example, it meant that the children had plentiful materials to work with when creating the Earth Day posters pictured here.

Another aspect of the relationship is assistance for higher education. In Belize free education stops at Grade 8. Many families live below the poverty line and cannot afford to send their children to high school. Former missioners and other donors have helped put several St. Hilda’s graduates through high school: Ashley Jones, Amieka Myers, Anfernee Vasquez, Jamal Whitty and Tianney Lamb.

Also thanks to donors from the cathedral family, three students from St. Hilda’s are currently attending high school: Aaliyah Augustine, Paul Jones and Anique Hernandez.  Paul explains why the financial support and encouragement mean so much to him: “I come from a poor family, but I want to show other children like me that it doesn’t matter where you came from, you can still achieve the goal you set your mind on.”

Originally, it cost $700 CDN per year per student, but the decline of our dollar means that it now costs $1,000 CDN annually per student. Although the existing students will be supported until graduation, unfortunately a high school scholarship cannot be offered to a St. Hilda’s graduate in 2016.

A couple years ago other donors at the cathedral kindly pooled resources to send two of the high school graduates to college. Although Anfernee Vasquez dropped out after a year, Amieka Myers intends to graduate with an associate in education certificate in 2017.

“Education is so important for these young people as is a well-equipped school,” says Brad McKnight, treasurer of the cathedral’s Missions Committee. “Our committee is considering a fund-raiser in late fall or early winter to make sure the financial support remains solid well into the future. Stay tuned for news about specific plans and for opportunities to volunteer.”

By Ann Deveau

A word from the Principal of St. Hilda’s School in Belize

The following letter was sent by Jane Martinez, principal of St. Hilda’s Anglican School in Georgeville, Belize. As many of our young friends in Belize prepare for their year end exams this week we would also ask that you keep them in your prayers.


I pray that this correspondence reaches you in good health. Wow! We’re almost at the end of the school year.What a year it has been! I must say that with all the challenges, we have had even greater blessings. We are now at the end of Education Month. Things have been really hectic because we are preparing for final exams, teachers’ appraisals are being done and there are so many other activities that take up our time.
We celebrated Earth Day with a poster competition. I will send you picture of those. We also had one of our Standard 6 students representing our zone in the District Spelling Bee finals! She came in third place! Yeah!!! Our St. Hilda’s is on the Spelling Bee map.
 I am really looking forward to your next visit.I continue to pray that your ministry is blessed and you are able to continue the great work that you are doing. Be blessed my friends.
Best Wishes,
Jane Martinez


A word from Rev. Canon Paul Jeffries in Uganda

Snow flurries in May doesn't sound good at all.
Yes, I'm going be N.B. In September and October, and would love an opportunity to visit the Cathedral. 
We have just closed for end of first term. It was busy and hectic as usual. We experienced a growth spurt this year of about 20%. This came as a result of parents becoming aware of our consistent academic performance and affordable fees. On one hand that was great , but the other hand it strained our ability to house everyone, and provide them with beds abets and desks . But we have made some good progress.
Of course we never really close. Five members of the chess club (started by a teenager from Sackville last summer) will participate in a chess tournament this weekend in Kamapala. The soccer team has qualified for national competitions and will travel to north east Uganda for 1-2 weeks depending on how well they play. And theological students report on Monday. So lots to keep us busy until 2nd term begins in early June.

God bless! 

REMINDER: The annual Country and Bluegrass Gospel Show in support of Rev. Paul Jeffries and Bishop McAllister College is this Saturday, June 4 @ 7:30pm!

Moment for Missions (June 2016)

From the Bible: “Go and make disciples of all nations.” (Matthew 28:19)

Quote about missions: “In the vast plain of the north I have sometimes seen, in the morning sun, the smoke of a thousand villages where no missionary has ever been.”Robert Moffat

Prayer requests: Pray that, by meditating on the scriptures, the cathedral family may become more aware of its mission to evangelize.