Exclusive stories from the mission field
An 11-year-old boy in Mexico had trouble socializing, and his father was addicted to drugs, so local missionaries seeking to help him had persuaded his mother to let him live at their educational center living quarters. Workers noticed some alarming drawings in his notebook. The sketches made it clear the boy was suicidal.
His friends and father were heavy drinkers, and a 17-year-old boy was on the verge of falling into the same lifestyle before a local missionary led him to Christ. He faced ridicule from his friends, and his father often beat him for becoming a Christian, but he was very public that he would not deny Christ and hoped to win others from his ethnic group with his testimony.
Working among Mixtec and other indigenous peoples, local missionaries in Mexico face the challenge of helping women and children who have suffered abuse to heal physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Not long after a young woman in central Mexico left her abusive husband and their two children, she got involved with another man who beat her – and introduced her to drugs. Lorena tried to leave him, but she was addicted to the drugs only he could provide. Things got worse when she discovered she was pregnant.
For an ethnic Mixtec woman like Donaji, nightmares were not just scary but predicted disaster in this world and the next.
The 40-year-old fruit-vendor in a remote village of western Mexico believed she was surrounded by gods of rain, trees, mountains, stones and forces in nature telling her she was doomed.
No amount of animal sacrifices could ward off the destruction of her soul that the dangers and deaths in her dreams portended.
Witchcraft was a way of life for an ethnic Mixtec father of six in a Mexican village who lost his two youngest children to mysterious illnesses.
Villagers who relied on his potions and rituals in their yearning to acquire fortune or favor believed that Roberto’s two young sons must have died in a war of spells between him and another specialist in witchcraft – and that his rival’s spell also doomed his other children to die.
It took a long, long time for Roberto to realize his perpetual drunken stupor would not take away the pain.