Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Save for the Date for A Night of Hope on November 8th, 2012

June 26, 2012

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Orphan Care Summit this May in Southern California

April 10, 2012

Interested in learning more about orphan care?

The Christian Alliance for Orphans’ annual Summit has become a national hub for Christians committed to adoption, foster care and global orphan initiatives rooted in the local church.

May 3-4, 2012 ♦ Saddleback Church ♦ Southern California

JOIN organization leaders, grassroots advocates, pastors, and ministry entrepreneurs sharing your passion.

ENCOUNTER the gathering hub of orphan ministry partnership, networking and inspiration for service.

BUILD knowledge, resources and practical skills via more than 75 workshops & unforgettable speakers and music, including Francis Chan, Rick Warren, Steven Curtis Chapman and Crawford Loritts.

Register here.

Join us at the Back2Back Family Reunion in Cincinnati!

April 5, 2012

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Join us for a free, festive celebration – a fun afternoon of games, food, music, children’s activities, and community with guest speakers Back2Back Directors, Todd & Beth Guckenberger who will be sharing ministry updates from our Back2Back sites! Hope Education Program graduates, Chef Angel & Chef Sebastian will prepare authentic Mexican appetizers, fresh salsa, guacamole and chips.

Cookout style dinner served from 5:30pm – 7:00pm hamburgers, hot dogs and churros.

Please feel free to invite friends and family to this fun event!

RSVP here.

First 50 to RSVP will receive a complimentary copy of Beth Guckenberger’s latest book,Tales of the Not Forgotten (one book per family).

Mission in Haiti

March 27, 2012

Join Brent & Anna Fudge at their upcoming fundraiser, March 31st, for their mission in Haiti.

What: Indoor Soccer Fundraiser for Back2Back Haiti

When: March 31st, 1-4pm

Where: Grace Chapel Indoor Soccer Field, 406 4th Avenue, Mason, OH 45040

RSVP to participate in a game here.

Schedule:

1pm: Adult & Child Soccer Games

3:15pm: Beth Guckenburger/Brent & Anna Fudge to share about our new ministry site in Haiti

4pm: Children’s Soccer Clinic, hosted by Jed Zayner, soccer player

Orphan Care Summit

February 17, 2012

The Christian Alliance for Orphans’ annual Summit has become the national hub for what Christianity Today recently called, “the burgeoning Christian orphan care movement.” Summit VIII on May 3-4, 2012 at Saddleback Church in Southern California is expected to draw 1,800 to 2,000 pastors, grassroots advocates, organizational and church ministry leaders. Alongside more than seventy workshops, the unforgettable plenary sessions will include Francis Chan, Rick and Kay Warren, Crawford Lorritts, Dennis Rainey, Steven Curtis Chapman, and other global leaders. Summit inspires, equips and connects for adoption, foster care and global orphan ministry.

Register here and join Back2Back staff at this important event.

Thankfulness, by Hope Maglich, Back2Back Mexico Staff

November 23, 2010

I remember as a child sitting around the Thanksgiving table with my family and all of us taking a turn to say what we were thankful for. The common things mentioned were family, friends, warm house, clothes, and it never failed that someone was thankful for turkey! We always mentioned the things that we had and gave thanks for those things. In my mind I would compare myself with someone who didn’t have the possessions or positions I did, and sincerely thank God that He had chosen to give those things to me.

After working closely with the people in the Rio, an impoverished community that Back2Back serves, my thoughts on giving thanks have changed a bit. It is easy to look at poverty and feel sympathy, pity, and guilt about what we have and what they don’t.  However, have we ever thought that poverty could be a thing to give thanks for in and of itself?

Poverty is defined as “the state of one with insufficient resources” (Merriam-Webster). It is the knowledge that you can’t take care of yourself and your family on your own. With poverty come dependence and humility and the deep realization that you need help, that you can’t satisfy your own needs. Many times we look on poverty through our self-sufficient lenses and are disgusted by it. However isn’t humility and dependence on God to satisfy our needs exactly what our Father in Heaven desires of us?

Often, when we have all the material possessions we need the thing we lack is dependence on God. We are able in many ways to provide for our own needs. We don’t really need Him. When we have too much we are tempted to disown the Lord, forget about Him and say “Who is the Lord?” (Proverbs 30:9).

In Matthew 5,  Jesus says, “Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” ‘Blessed’ is a word that means so much more than happiness. It means a spiritual joy and well-being.  Oh how much eternal joy a person has whose spirit is dependent on God and humbled before Him!

Recently, I was talking to a Mexican friend who experienced a severe time of financial need before coming to serve with Back2Back. His told me stories of walking four miles to get to school because he couldn’t pay for a bus ticket and about how he and his sisters would go to bed early at night because it helped them forget about the pain in their gnawing stomachs.

“That time was hard,” he said, “But I wouldn’t trade what I learned for anything. During those years I saw the Lord’s provision for me in ways I never could have dreamed.”

He then went on to tell story after story of the miraculous ways his Father in heaven provided him with food, clothing, school supplies, etc. Stories of people calling and inviting him and his sisters to eat the day they ran out of food, others dropping by with bags of groceries right when they weren’t sure what they would have for dinner, stories of finding the materials he needed for school laying on the side of the road. As a result of his poverty, the man’s faith in God is unlike any I have seen.

The Kingdom of God is about the least being the greatest, the last being first, and the weak being strong so that ultimately the Lord is glorified. We can praise God for weakness, humility, and poverty when it causes us to be dependent on Him and when it builds in us a testimony of His faithfulness.

Are there ways in which you can thank God for poverty this Thanksgiving?

Join us in India!

November 18, 2010

Interested in serving with Back2Back?  Join us in Hyderabad, India from February 9-18, 2011.

Deposit due November 30, 2010!

Back2Back mission trips provide individuals with a life-changing experience that leaves a lasting impact. Back2Back India exists to serve the abandoned and neglected children of Hyderabad, India. We partner with local children’s homes to meet the needs of over 300 orphans. During the day, teams serve at area orphanages. During the evening, live worship and small group time for debriefing are designed to foster spiritual growth.

Each year, we facilitate mission trips for thousands of individuals, families and businesses providing an opportunity to serve orphans and impoverished families in a third world country. Back2Back coordinates each mission trip, handling all logistics and preparation, in-country transportation and meals.

For additional information on partnering with Back2Back through mission trips, contact ramos@back2backministries.org

Full Service Mission Trip

• 7 Days (plus travel)

• Group leader handbook

• Online trip handbook

• Promotional materials

• Unlimited trip consultations

• Fundraising ideas manual

• Customizable projects

• Purified drinking water

• Airport transfers

• Transportation to/from ministry sites

• Evening debriefing

• Trip devotional

 

NASCAR Driver, Carl Edwards, and Copart Team Up to Auction Edwards’ Harley Davidson Motorcycle and Race Memorabilia to Benefit Back2Back Ministries’ Orphan Care Program

October 25, 2010

Carl Edwards with his XR1200TM Harley Davidson Sportster, which he is auctioning online to benefit Back2Back.

Copart, Inc., a leading online vehicle auction company, today announced it is teaming up with Roush Fenway Racing driver, Carl Edwards, for a promotion and online auction of his personal memorabilia.  Carl Edwards intends to donate all proceeds from the auction to benefit Back2Back Ministries’ orphan care program in Monterrey, Mexico. Back2Back Ministries is a non-profit organization that provides for orphans and impoverished families around the world with locations in Monterrey and Cancun, Mexico, Jos, Nigeria and Hyderabad, India.

“This partnership is an exciting way for Copart to support Back2Back,” said Todd Guckenberger, Executive Director of Back2Back Ministries.  “While they promote their auction via their social networking program, they are raising enormous amounts of visibility for our organization and helping to meet the practical needs of the orphaned children we serve.”

“We are incredibly proud to be the connecting piece of the puzzle in this campaign to support Back2Back Ministries,” said Copart CEO Jay Adair. “The opportunity to serve as the vehicle between Carl Edwards and Back2Back in raising money for this charity is tremendous and demonstrates a core value that we at Copart stand for.”

Both Copart and Back2Back Ministries will use social networking platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogging and other viral marketing tactics to help drive people to the charity auction and sweepstakes, where they can become Copart.com members for free.  Once a member, fans will be able to bid on items that include Edwards’ used fire suit, autographed pit crew uniform, a hood off the No. 60 Copart Ford that Edwards raced in Nashville this season, and a Harley Davidson that Edwards won at the Nationwide Road America race in June.

“Sitting at the drivers meeting in Road America, they showed all of the drivers this really cool looking motorcycle that the winner of the race would win,” said Carl Edwards.  “I knew that if I won the race, that motorcycle would be mine. So, I was talking to a friend of mine, Lonnie Clouse who serves orphans through Back2Back Ministries, about selling the bike if I won and giving the proceeds to his orphanage. After we talked about, I was thinking about how I was going to sell this motorcycle. Luckily, I have the perfect sponsor to sell a vehicle online and raise money. This is a perfect case of everything falling into place and I’m really proud of working with Copart in order to make this happen.”

The live online auction will occur on November 15, 2010 at Copart.com, but fans can start placing their maximum bids today. Bid at copart.com or by visiting the sweepstakes section of Copart’s Facebook fan page.

You are Invited to Back2Back Ministries’ Fall Fundraising Dinner

October 20, 2010

Cincinnati Friends: Back2Back Ministries’ Fall Fundraising Dinner is on Thursday, November 11th at 6pm in West Chester, Ohio at the Savannah House. Join us as we explore the various Back2Back ministry sites and hear how Back2Back is providing care to orphans around the globe. $75/per person. To RSVP or for more information, contact Diane Siemer at dsiemer@back2backministries.org

Join us at Back2Back’s Fall Fundraising Dinner

October 6, 2010

Cincinnati Friends: Back2Back Ministries’ Fall Fundraising Dinner is on Thursday, November 11th at 6pm in West Chester, Ohio at the Savannah House. Join us as we explore the various Back2Back ministry sites and hear how Back2Back is providing care to orphans around the globe. $75/per person. To RSVP or for more information, contact Diane Siemer at dsiemer@back2backministries.org


Mexico Celebrates 200 Years of Independence, by Hope Maglich, Back2Back Mexico Staff

September 20, 2010

For weeks, the streets of Monterrey have shimmered red, white, and green as vendors have displayed their flags, t-shirts, streamers, and noisemakers on the sides of the roads.  Monterrey has been a bustle of activity with concerts, plays, and movies about the bicentennial of Mexico’s independence from Spain and the centennial celebration of the Mexican revolution.  September 15th, 2010 was quite a day in Mexico!

For Back2Back, our festivities started at Casa Hogar Douglas. Staff, children, caretakers, and two American mission groups gathered in the Douglas courtyard dressed in red, white, and green, ready for the ceremony and celebration! Several of the older children, dressed in uniform, marched the Mexican flag into the center of the courtyard for the anthem to be sung. Then Daniela, from Douglas, led the children in the student promise to the flag. Together as a community we sang the state of Nuevo Leon anthem and waited for the climax of it all, “El Grito”.

Traditionally, the 15th of September is referred to as “El Grito” (the cry).  Two hundred years ago in the village of Dolores (near Mexico City) on September 15th at 11:00pm a priest named Miguel Hidalgo gave the shout to the people to take up arms and fight for Mexico’s independence.  This started the 11 years of war with Spain for what is now the country of Mexico.

In Independence Day celebrations, traditionally the mayor or governor of the town will give the cry to the people just as Hidalgo did many years ago.  At Casa Hogar Douglas, one of our teens and a member of the Hope Education Program, Leo, who were dressed in traditional “charro” costume, gave the historic cry to the children, Back2Back staff, and group members participating with us. All around echoed the response to each phrase Leo spoke, “Viva Mexico, viva Mexico, viva Mexico!”

With excitement high, Casa Hogar Douglas director, Pastor Javiar, stood up and spoke about how as believers we are called “the city of God” and how the greatest independence we have is that of freedom and liberty that is found in Christ. Together as a community, we thanked God for the freedom and grace he has showered on us.

The rest of the evening was celebrated with a Mexican buffet and a carnival for the children! Little red, white, and green bodies were everywhere as they waited for their turn to play games, eat tacos, and win prizes!

Later that night, we put on a special event for our teenagers in the Hope Education Program. We celebrated their country’s heritage with them with a decorated palapa, virgin pina coladas, and the events in downtown Mexico City projected on the big screen.  Together at 11:00pm, we watched President Calderon give the grito shout from the Zocalo and the amazing festivities happening in Mexico City. We also had the fun of shooting off our own fireworks on campus! The teens loved it, as did the staff! We finished with salsa dancing into the night.

It was amazing to experience Mexico’s bicentennial here in the country and even more exciting to celebrate with the children and teens such an important part of their heritage. Viva Mexico!

Hurricane Alex Update, by Beth Guckenberger, Back2Back Mexico Staff

July 22, 2010

Thank you for your immediate response to our pressing repair and relief needs here in Monterrey, as a result of Hurricane Alex.  As a staff, we have been praying that we would be available in the aftermath of the storm to meet people’s emotional and physical needs.

Thank you for joining us as:
1. We have begun repairs to the Back2Back campus.  We are repairing both existing water damage (to the roads, dorms, walls, etc…), as well as reinforcing existing systems (water drainage, septic systems) so that in the event that we were to have a similar tragedy in the future, our systems would be better able to handle it.



2. We have been providing daily meals to families in Rio 3, an impoverished community that we serve. We have been coming alongside ministry partners in the area, such as Olga and her family, as they have been meeting the needs of the estimated 1,000 homeless individuals in the Rio. This has required both financial and human resources. The rebuilding will be continuing for a while, but with your help, we have been able to offer food, medicine, water and building supplies.

Families line up to receive a meal

A child from the Rio enjoying her lunch

3. In the other Rio communities that we serve (Cadereyta and Meme’s Rio), we have provided meals, clean water, cleaning crews, encouragement and help as they clean out their homes.  The jobs of many in the communities have been impacted by the rain (they collect or recycle garbage for example).  As a result, many have experienced weeks without employment. The staff has been attentive to those needs and grateful for your contributions.

Back2Back staff member, Jim Betscher, shows families in the Rio how to purify their water using Pur water filtration packets

A family receives a food package from Back2Back staff

Connecting with a woman from the Rio during the clothing giveaway

A woman receives a new outfit at a Back2Back clothing giveaway

Clean-up crews salvage damaged items from homes flooded during the hurricane

Hurricane clean-up crews help a family in the Rio pull their car out of the mud

4. Our children’s homes have all been visited by staff and summer groups and most of the clean-up is completed.  The majority of them experienced little physical damage, just water damage and the inconvenience of clean-up.  We have found ourselves continually grateful for God’s protection during the storm.

The hurricane and its effects are still talked about daily in the city.  You can’t drive anywhere without seeing the effect on roads and bridges.  We have been praying and are mindful of our responsibility to speak truth and use this experience to strengthen our own faith, our understanding of the Lord and our relationships with those we serve. Thank you for continually giving us the tools we need to reach out to the community.

You are invited . . .

July 22, 2010

Back2Back Ministries Hurricane Alex Prayer Service

WHEN: Thursday, July 22nd – 7:00 – 8:30

WHERE: Vineyard Community Church Chapel

11340 Century Circle East
Cincinnati, OH 45246-3316

As you may know, Monterrey, Mexico was hit hard by 40 inches of rain as a result of Hurricane Alex two weeks ago.  The Back2Back Mexico campus sustained fairly significant damage.  The Rio communities (squatters villages) where Back2Back serves also suffered greatly.  Flooding from this storm has presented significant challenges in the communities and children’s homes where we serve.

We want to invite those in Greater Cincinnati to gather in support of Back2Back.  The evening will consist of:

– a time of praise and worship

– some pictures and information on the impact of the storm on Back2Back

– a time of prayer for the overall ministry of Back2Back and for some very specific prayer requests directly from the staff in Monterrey

– a video update and (and internet access in Monterrey permitting)  a Live Video Skype call directly with Back2Back Mexico staff

Cinco de Mayo Open House

May 13, 2010

Thanks to all those who came out to our Cinco de Mayo Hope Program Open House last week! The students and staff from the Hope Program enjoyed getting a chance to meet with you! Here are a few pictures from the evening.

Flying Pig Race Fundraiser Update

May 10, 2010

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Flying Pig races in Cincinnati this past weekend! We appreciate all who ran and everyone who cheered, even in the rain! Many runners raised money for Back2Back through generous donations from sponsors. Four Back2Back Mexico staff members and one of our Hope Program students completed the full marathon. Other staff and friends of the ministry completed the half-marathon and/or team relay. Check out the upcoming Back2Back Fall magazine for more details about the event. We will be having a Back2Back Flying Pig team for the race next year as well!

Beth Guckenberger, Abby Carlin and Chelsie Puterbaugh completed the Flying Pig relay

Matt Cooper, Back2Back Mexico staff, completed the full marathon

Mauricio, Matt Cooper, Antonio, Jonathan, Kurt Kersey & Tim Couch

Tune in to CNN, Sat at 8pm for Rescued, a story of orphan care in Haiti

May 7, 2010

Be sure to tune in to CNN this Saturday night (8pm EST) for Rescued, a documentary on how Christian missionaries are serving children in need in Haiti. The video was created by Discover the Journey, a non-profit that is a friend of Back2Back. View the trailer below.

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Hope Program Cooking Show, by Chelsie Puterbaugh, Back2Back US Staff

May 5, 2010

Tuesday night, Back2Back hosted a Cinco de Mayo fundraiser at the Party Source in Newport, KY.  Two students from the Back2Back Hope Program* (more info on the program below), Sebastian and Oscar, gave a great cooking demonstration and food tasting for thirty-two guests!  All proceeds from the cooking show will go toward academic scholarships for Back2Back Hope Program students.

During the cooking event, Oscar and Sebastian shared stories about their lives, told the crowd about their favorite food, their most enjoyable cooking style, and how they knew they wanted to become “great chefs”.  They also answered cooking questions and shared culinary insights with the audience, such as how to properly peel a tomato (by shocking it with ice water), blanch a pepper, and how to extract flavor from rice.

Sebastian prepares Tamal Azteca, a Mexican lasagna, while Beth Guckenberger interprets

Sebastian adds the finishing touches to the Tamal Azteca dish

Oscar prepared Caldo Tlalpeno and Arroz a la Mexicana, two Mexican dishes

This event, for me, was about so much more than enjoying delicious food prepared by Sebastian and Oscar.  I was able to look beyond their amazing cooking skills and see God fulfilling His promises – to give them a hope, a future and so much more!  Their life-long dreams are becoming realities all thanks to the Hope Education Program.  The dreams and passions they thought were so distant and unattainable are now a present reality and joy in their lives.

Mauricio, Oscar, Matt and Sebastian (left to right). Mauricio and Matt are two Back2Back staff members, who, along with their families, act as house parents for Hope Program teens, like Sebastian and Oscar

*Through the Hope Education Program, we offer students from Mexican children’s homes a way to continue their education when free public school ends at ninth grade. The students stay on the Back2Back campus in homes with staff families, experiencing a healthy family life, perhaps for the very first time. Students are mentored, provided with an education, and encouraged to pursue their dreams so that they can become self-sustaining individuals who give back to their community. Only 4% of Mexicans complete college; those who do will become the leaders of tomorrow, forever shaping the direction of their country.

Join us for a Hope Program Open House in Cincinnati!

April 28, 2010

Two Year Anniversary of the Rio Soup Kitchen, by Hope Maglich, Back2Back Mexico Staff

April 26, 2010

Recently, we celebrated the two year anniversary of our soup kitchen in the Rio, a shantytown community that Back2Back serves! It was a fantastic day filled with good food, fun, and fellowship. The comedor was packed out with people! We had worship, preaching, prayer time, children’s church, slide show, and a meal of yummy arrachera!

The comedor filled with faces as we worshiped the Lord and thanked Him for the ministry in that place over the past two years.  I mainly help out with the children’s ministry during soup kitchen Saturdays. Sticking with our theme of the fruit of the Spirit the children are doing an activity with a story that illustrates faith. We had over fifty kids come to the class. Usually we plan for about thirty.

The children did an activity involving a story about faith

Working on a craft about faith

Enjoying a meal together

After the preaching and children’s classes, we all gathered together for an arrachera meal. It was delicious! Arrachera is a special meat that has been marinated and then grilled. It is sooo good. It was so fun to provide this meal for these people as it is typically expensive and not affordable by many of the families we serve. We also gave out elotes! Elotes are corn on the cob that have been boiled and coated with chili and mayonnaise. It is a Mexican favorite and often is preferred as a dessert of sorts.

Our great grillers who worked for hours to prepare the meat for us to eat

Thanks to everyone who has helped support the soup kitchen financially and prayerfully over the past two years. God is moving and doing great things in that community. We are privileged to celebrate two years of ministry and thank all who have played a part. Blessings to you!

World Malaria Day

April 23, 2010

Nearly one million people die from malaria each year, mostly children younger than five years old. When insecticide-treated nets are used properly by three-quarters of the people in a community, malaria transmission is cut by 50%. It is estimated that less than 5% of children in sub-Saharan Africa currently sleep under any type of insecticide-treated net. Sunday, April 25 is World Malaria Day 2010, a day created to raise awareness and action in the fight against this preventable disease. To donate toward the purchase of mosquito nets for families served by Back2Back Nigeria, contact Claire at 513-754-0300 or donate at our website and designate “malaria nets” in the memo line.

Back2Back Flying Pig Team Dinner

April 19, 2010

Attention all Back2Back Flying Pig Team Runners and Fans: We will be having a team dinner this Thursday night at Skyline Chili in Landen, Ohio from 5-7 p.m. Come and enjoy fellowship and food and receive more race day information! Hope to see you there!

Join the Back2Back Flying Pig Team!

April 14, 2010

It’s not too late to join the Back2Back Flying Pig Team to run the 5k,10k, half or full marathon on May 1st or 2nd. We would love to have you join our team!

Join the Back2Back Flying Pig Marathon Team or Sponsor a Runner!

February 26, 2010

The Flying Pig Marathon is a city-wide race held annually in Cincinnati, Ohio.  This year, the race is scheduled for May 2, 2010 at 6:30 a.m. and this year, for the first time ever, Back2Back Ministries is organizing a team of runners to raise funds for the needs in our three ministry sites by asking people to sponsor, or “adopt” a runner!  To date, the team consists of Todd & Beth Guckenberger, Matt & Julie Cooper, Tim Couch, Kurt Kersey, and Antonio Garcia Espinosa.  Click here to find out how to join the team and become a Back2Back Pig!  Not a runner?  Sign-up to sponsor a runner here.

Showing God’s Love at the Rio – Valentine’s Day Outreach, by Cathy Huffer, Back2Back Staff

February 18, 2010

Valentine’s Day was a perfect time for one of our short-term mission groups to share God’s love to the kids and families at Meme’s Rio. Our group had fifteen kids in it ranging from seven to nineteen. They were great as we asked them to help us teach the 1 Corinthians 13 passage on love to about thirty-six kids at the soup kitchen. After we shared the verse, the kids teamed up to give six different dramas of what love is and what love is not. The kids were fascinated and really paid attention well.

Afterwards, they made valentines with homework to give away to someone special.

We served a delicious tostada meal and a group prayed against the spiritual warfare that is apparent there. The men helped put doors on the soup kitchen, while the kids played and played.

At the end,  we were getting ready to pray for Meme, one of our ministry partners, when Meme pointed out a girl who was sick and needed prayer. These kids laid hands on this girl and strong, passionate, sweet prayers went up around her. Prayers for healing, for increasing her faith, for protection and against fear.

What a full day to see God’s love in sharing His word, feeding the hungry, loving the people, working on the soup kitchen and blanketing the place in prayer. Now that is Biblical Love.

Join Back2Back at the annual Summit of the Orphan

February 15, 2010

Join Back2Back Ministries at the Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit in Eden Prarie, Minnesota April 29-30, 2010. The Summit is fast approaching! Like no other event nationwide, Summit has become the gathering point and training hub for Christians committed to adoption, foster care and global orphans.

Something for Everyone…Whether a newcomer to church orphan ministry or a veteran, Summit VI will help build vision, resources and practical know-how for effective ministries: Headline plenary speakers including John Piper, Tom Davis, Al Mohler, and other national leaders, as well as compelling voices from the global church. Music and personal sharing from Mary Beth and Steven Curtis Chapman, and special performances by Peder Eide and the Desparation Band.

– More than 50 workshops delivering nuts-and-bolts for adoption, foster care and global orphan programs – designed for both laymen and leadership.

– Orphan care resources for church ministries, as well as personal orphan care and adoption journeys.

– 5 Hague-credit breakout sessions.

– Networking with respected adoption, global orphan and foster care organizations

REGISTER NOW!

For more information, visit Christian Alliance for Orphans, Summit VI

For questions please email info@christianalliancefororphans.org

We need your help sharing this opportunity with your church community and others that share a calling to care for orphans.

HERE ARE 5 WAYS YOU CAN SHARE SUMMIT VI:

1. Put up this free poster in your church or ministry

2. Write a blog post or article for your church (or personal) website

3. Offer this bulletin insert to your church leadership

4. Share this email with a friend from another church

5. Personally invite 3 people to join you at Summit

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Crossing Cultures, by Ruby Moyer & Kathy Couch, Back2Back Mexico Staff

January 31, 2010

During the Christmas holidays this year, we had the opportunity to take a few of the Hope Program teens to the United States.  We thought it would give them great insight on what it’s like to live in a foreign country with a foreign language surrounding you at all times. It put a face to the Hope Program for some of our supporters.  What a great way to merge two cultures.

Ruby loaded up Jazmin and Evelyn for a long day of travel.  We took two buses, two flights, and a car ride to finally arrive in Indiana.  We were greeted with snow to the girls delight.

Our two weeks were filled with the girls meeting people, eating in restaurants, shopping, being cold, and visiting Chicago – all of which were new experiences.  It gave us a chance to deepen our relationship and for them to see what life is like in the United States.  They got to spend time with their previous house parents, Bill and Heather Merrill, who they still have a relationship with, and one of the highlights was a day in Chicago that the Merrills blessed us with.  We stayed in a 5–star hotel and felt like queens for the day.

Tim and Kathy sent Antonio to visit a supporter in Austin, Texas.  He experienced his first border crossing and a bus ride in the US, alone, and lived to tell about it.  A few days later, we loaded up Cheko and headed to Austin to pick up Antonio and then on to Oklahoma.  The young men who had never seen snow before were able to experience a blizzard on Christmas Eve.  During the week, they encountered lots of opportunities to push people out of the snow and to shovel driveways.  They even built a snowman and their comment was, “It’s a lot harder than it looks!”

When you grow up in a childrens’ home all your life, you are constantly surrounded by people.  One thing we noticed on this trip was that being in a completely different environment, their personalities were able to shine through and we saw a side of them we had never seen before.  You could see on their faces that they felt loved, valued, and important.

New Soles for Tender Souls

January 21, 2010

Several months ago we shared how the Christian teen band, PureNRG served alongside us in Monterrey, Mexico.  Since then, they have continued to bless the children we serve in practical ways, such as through a recent fundraiser, New Soles for Tender Souls.  With the money that was raised through pre-purchases of their new album, The Real Thing, over 2,000 shoes were purchased for impoverished children in the Dominican Republic as well as orphans that Back2Back serves in Monterrey, Mexico.  A big thank you to PureNRG, Family Christian Stores and the James Fund!

Join with us in honor of Orphan Sunday

November 6, 2009

Back2Back supports the Christian Alliance for Orphans in their shared passion for caring for orphans.  The Christian Alliance for Orphans unites orphan-serving organizations and churches to ignite passion and build excellence for Christ-honoring orphan care, foster youth and adoption ministry.

This Sunday, November 8th, is Orphan Sunday, a day created by the Christian Alliance for Orphans to honor the 148 million orphans in the world.  Below are a few thoughts from the Christian Alliance for Orphans.  For more information and resources, visit the Orphan Sunday website.

Thoughts on Orphan Sunday from the Christian Alliance for Orphans

Orphan Sunday is November 8th.

On November 8, 2009, Christians will do something we’ve never done before. We’ll stand with a united voice across America and beyond for the orphan. Our prayer is that this Orphan Sunday will be remembered as the day that launched a revolution. Building on the many ways God is already stirring, local events across the country will help catalyze heart change…and action. Already, we see hints of revolution in these numbers: over 50 excellent Christian organizations have united behind the movement; more than 75 volunteer coordinators are promoting efforts across the U.S. We anticipate hundreds of events that will touch thousands of lives. Clearly, God is calling many to a revolution in response to the Biblical mandate to care for His precious children. How will you be part of this historic day? An Orphan Sunday activity can be a Sunday morning sermon or prayer…the launch of an orphan initiative…a small group gathered to pray… a Sunday school class or youth group event.

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Ten Ways Every Christian Can Care for the Orphan and Waiting Child, Thoughts from Hope for Orphans

1. PRAY for them

– Tape a waiting child’s picture to your dashboard and pray for the child every time you’re in a car. Visit AdoptUsKids.org or RainbowKids.com. Organize an evening prayer vigil at your church and pray for children in foster care or an orphanage overseas.

2. SPEAK UP for them

-Carry a waiting child’s picture and show it to other believers. Ask if they, or someone they know, would give this child a home. Become a court appointed special advocate for a child in foster care. Visit NationalCASA.org for details.

3. PROVIDE for their needs

-Give sacrificially to a reputable orphanage. Financial gifts can be designated for specific items and aid needed by orphans. Visit HelpOrphans.org for more information. Organize a drive in your church to collect school supplies for children in foster care or shoes for orphans overseas. Visit GainUSA.org or ShoesForOrphanSouls.org.

4. SUPPORT those who support them

– Mow, baby sit, or organize meals for a week for foster parents. Pray with them and tell them you appreciate what they do. Encourage a family adopting an older child by hosting a shower for them. Partner with an orphan care organization or ministry.

5. PROTECT them from harm

-Become a foster parent or emergency foster parent. Raise money to build a children’s home to help remove children from the streets. Visit WorldOrphans.org for details.  Support an existing children’s home.  Contact Back2Back Ministries to find out how you can help (513-754-0300).

6. VISIT them where they are

-Go on a mission trip to an orphanage as an individual or family.  Support reputable orphan care organizations on a regular basis.

7. GIVE sacrificially to them

-Contribute generously to an adoptive family to help offset their costs. Visit ShaohannahsHope.org or LifeSongForOrphans.org.

8. ENCOURAGE them to press on

– Sponsor a child, support them financially, and encourage them through your letters.  Contact Back2Back Ministries (513-754-0300) if you are interested in sponsoring one of the children that we serve. Become a mentor or tutor to a teenager in a foster group-home.

9. ADOPT them into your family

-Give a child a home through international, domestic, or foster care adoption. Adopt a young adult who has aged out of the system.

10. MOBILIZE your church for them

-Be a catalyst in your church for starting a sustained orphans ministry. Visit HopeForOrphans.org for resources and to learn more about attending a Your Church and the Orphan™ workshop.  Organize a church mission trip to serve at an orphange.

Back2Back Breakfast

November 3, 2009

Last week, Back2Back hosted a breakfast in Mason, Ohio.  The purpose of this particular event was to expose new people to the ministry by providing an opportunity to learn how Back2Back is meeting the orphan care need in Mexico, Nigeria and India.

Thank you to all those who attended or partnered with us to make this event a success.  We’re grateful for our supporters who weren’t there, as well as those who were able to partner with us by hosting tables.  For more information about being involved or attending our banquet next year, please contact us at 513-754-0300.

Viva Mexico!, by Jim Betscher

September 30, 2009

September 16 is the Mexican Independence Day. The holiday is actually celebrated more on the night before than on the 16th. It reminds me of New Years Eve compared to New Years Day. The tradition here is to have a party on the night of the 15th, and at midnight the president leads the whole country in a cheer. At the end of the cheer, the president says “Viva Mexico” and everyone else joins in with “Viva!”

This year, Back2Back helped plan a party, organized by the church at Casa Hogar Douglas. The eighty kids that live at this children’s home were so proud to open their home up to the public to host this party.

The children at Douglas Children's Home helped decorate for the party

The children at Douglas Children's Home helped decorate for the party

They planned and worked to decorate and then they entertained the guests for the evening. We had about one hundred guests who helped us celebrate Mexico’s Independence Day with the children.  I am so thankful that the kids had an opportunity to enjoy this evening. This is something that they might be doing as a family if they had an opportunity to live in a home with their parents. Living in a children’s home, many times they miss out on events like this. But events like this are so important because they are part of their Mexican heritage.

The children dressed up in costumes to celebrate

The children dressed up in costumes to celebrate

The staff from Back2Back helped with booths, similar to the type that you would see at a carnival.

Back2Back staff enjoyed the celebration

Back2Back staff enjoying the celebration

We catered a delicious Mexican buffet dinner and played games with prizes. The children even performed a short program with the Mexican pledge and national anthem.

The children recited the National Anthem

The children recited the Mexican Pledge and the National Anthem

Some of the youngest kids did a traditional Mexican dance for the crowd and JJ Lail from our staff led everyone in the “grito” or “shout”.

Needless to say, they were all tired at the end of the night but they were very content too. “Viva Mexico!!!”

A Different Kind of Thanksgiving, by Claire Rogers

September 9, 2009

When Wendy Kuremsky’s  thirteen-year old daughter, Caroline, decided to participate on a Back2Back mission trip with her school, Wendy had no idea just how much that one-week in Mexico would change her daughter.

Wendy remembers the day she picked up Caroline from the airport.  “When she landed in Dayton, OH, after the trip, we got in the car and before I even had my keys out, she had the light on and was showing me the things she did on her digital camera screen and telling me about the kids.  It clearly had an impact on her,” she recalls.  “About a week later she was in another’s mom’s car on the way to dance lessons.  The mom called me afterward and told me how Caroline was so articulate about the trip and that it was obvious she had changed.”

Caroline serving in Mexico on a Back2Back Ministries mission trip

Caroline serving in Mexico on a Back2Back Ministries mission trip

Caroline had been touched by the suffering and poverty she had witnessed.  She felt compelled to do something practical to help the orphans that she had met at the children’s homes where Back2Back serves.  As her birthday approached, Caroline began planning a big party, as she had every year before.  But this time, her celebration would be different.  Instead of accepting traditional birthday presents, Caroline made a special request to attendees, asking that they bring an item to be donated to the children’s homes in Mexico.  On the invitations, she suggested a few specific items that were most needed in the orphanages:  socks, shoes, flip flops, and blankets.

The Kuremsky’s were amazed by the response.  Almost everyone who was invited to the party attended.

“It was literally overwhelming how everyone responded,” Wendy says. “We purposely set up a long table right near the entrance to our yard and put some buckets on it.  When people brought their donations, we’d sort them into the buckets.  It was so exciting to see what families had chosen. In no time at all, the buckets were overflowing.  Another little table was added and we started putting stuff on the ground under the table.  It was very fun the next day for Caroline to look through and see all the things she knew the kids could use.”

Wendy ‘s heart was touched by Caroline’s zeal.  It was inspiring for her to see her daughter’s deep compassion for the children she had met and her determination to do something to make a difference, even after the trip was over.  “God can indeed teach valuable lessons to us through our children,” she says.

Caroline’s older brother, Tanner, has also served on a Back2Back Mexico mission trip.  Impacted by the experiences of Caroline and Tanner, Wendy and her husband, Michael, decided to take a family trip to Mexico to serve at the children’s homes together.  This November, they are joining several other families, for Back2Back’s annual Thanksgiving week mission trip.  They will be taking several extra suitcases, stuffed with socks, shoes and blankets, all of which were donated at Caroline’s birthday party.  While there, they will deliver the items to the local orphanages.

The Kuremskys think that serving children in need is the perfect way to spend Thanksgiving together as a family.  When asked what prompted them to forgo a traditional Thanksgiving celebration, Michael responded, “There is no better way to express our gratitude for how we’ve been blessed as a family than to serve people who haven’t been as blessed as us.”

Interested in participating in the Back2Back Thanksgiving mission trip, Nov 25-29?  There are still a few remaining spots open for families or individuals.  If you would like to join the Kuremskys in Monterrey, Mexico this Thanksgiving, please email the trip leader, Brian Bertke, at brian@back2backministries.org

Beth Guckenberger’s Speaking Schedule

August 26, 2009

Beth speaking

This fall, Beth Guckenberger, one of the directors of Back2Back Mexico, will be speaking at several US venues, while she and her family are temporarily living in Cincinnati (through December).  If you’re in the area, please feel free to join us!

October 2-4: NASCAR and Nationwide chapels, Kansas City

October 10: Monterrey, MX with FCS and PureNRG

October 16-17: Intimacy Retreat, Vineyard Community Church, Cincinnati, OH

October 25: Northstar Vineyard Community Church, Cincinnati, OH

October 30: North Cincinnati Community Church, Cincinnati, OH

November 12: Campus Crusade for Christ, Indiana University, Bloomington

December 13: Northstar Vineyard Community Church, Cincinnati

December 15: Hope Church MOPS, Cincinnati

Check back often – the schedule below will be updated as new speaking engagements are booked!  If you are interested in scheduling Beth for a speaking engagement, event or retreat at your church or organization, please contact kate@back2backministries.org to check Beth’s availability and receive additional information.

Ribbons and Bows, by Claire Rogers

August 5, 2009

Last year, Casey Ochs attended the 7th grade at Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy. Her world studies’ teacher, Steve McCollum, leads a mission trip to Back2Back’s Monterrey, Mexico base every year.  During class, Casey saw a picture of a little girl that Steve had taken during an outreach to Rio III, a squatter’s village that Back2Back serves.  The little girl in the photograph had a chicken bone in her hair.  Steve explained to Casey that the bone was the only thing the girl’s mother had to put in her daughter’s hair.

Upon hearing that, Casey felt called to do something, so she took action, inviting the girls in her class, as well as her teachers, to bring in ribbon and barrettes to make hair pieces for the girls in Mexico.  She called her outreach “Ribbons & Bows.” Casey worked tirelessly collecting donations and hosting bow-making parties, where she and her friends assembled hundreds of hair pieces.  Last spring, over Easter break, Casey was able to see the fruit of her labors.  Steve McCollum led a group to Back2Back Mexico.  While there, Steve’s group traveled to the Rio with Back2Back staff members to hand-deliver beautiful new hair bows to the girls in the Rio.

God desires to use each of us, like Casey, to make a difference by responding to the call He has put on our heart –we must just be willing.  Casey’s story is a wonderful example of the impact we can make when we become attentive to the needs of others and respond with action.

The girls collected bows, ribbons and barrettes to assemble into beautiful hair pieces

The girls collected bows, ribbons and barrettes to assemble into beautiful hair pieces

Casey and her friends at a bow making party

Casey with her friends at a bow making party

A few of the finished products

A few of the finished products

Casey and her friends distributing bows to girls at the Rio

Distributing bows to girls at the Rio in Monterrey, Mexico

The Lost Sheep, by Beth Guckenberger

July 3, 2009

What a great opportunity we had as a ministry to address the enthusiastic crowd of students gathered at the Vineyard Community Church in Cincinnati for the Summer of Service Conference. Over 900 teenagers from 14 states came for a week of showing God’s tangible love to the city through outreach and service projects like helping build homes with Habitat for Humanity.  Each evening, the students attended a service with a time of worship and teaching from a speaker.

The evening program that I participated in was full of stories of how God intersected the body with the world.   I spoke that night about the story of Jesus leaving the 99 sheep and going after the one that had been separated.  That he was not satisfied to have almost everyone… his heart was for those that live outside of the flock.  I challenged the students to be a generation not willing to just “party” among the 99, grateful you aren’t lost anymore, but to be willing to go wherever the road takes you in pursuit of that one.  It was a powerful evening and I pray there was interest sowed in their hearts for the fatherless children of the world.

Sharing with the Students at SOS - © Photos by CRT

Sharing with the Students at SOS - © Photos by CRT

Beth Telling the Story of the Lost Sheep from Luke 15 - © Photos by CRT

Telling the Story of the Lost Sheep from Luke 15 - © Photos by CRT

Praying for Students - © Photos by CRT

Praying for Students - © Photos by CRT

After the talk, students were invited to receive prayer - © Photos by CRT

After the talk, students were invited to receive prayer - © Photos by CRT