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Please read the following letter from Scott Wester, written to our summer teams regarding the flu concerns.
This week Ensenada area schools started returning to their regular schedules. By next week, all schools & businesses will be operating at normal levels.
To this point there has not been an Outbreak in our area of Baja California.
To my knowledge there has only been one person with the H1N1, who was treated and released. (It may be worth noting that San Diego has had more cases)
All appearances from the CDC & WHO are that this is a mild virus. It is important to keep in mind that many people in Mexico are not accustomed to going to the doctor for flu like symptoms. This has been speculated as being one reason why a number of people died from it initially. However, the message is out and I can tell you that any Mexican I know would now go to the doctor immediately if they were experiencing flu like symptoms.
We believe that the situation has improved & travel to & in Baja continues to be safe.
I will send another update in the coming weeks, or sooner if the situation warrants it.
We look forward to hosting your team in Ensnada this summer. We are so thankful for your partnership with YUGO Ministries, and we trust that your presence in Mexico this summer will not only be a blessing to the people of Mexico & the Kingdom of God, but it will be a blessing to your team as well.
Again, please feel free to contact me personally if you have any questions or concerns.
Serving with you in the Spirit of Jesus,
Scott C Wester
This year we've had to respond to concerns regarding economics, violence, and now the H1N1 (swine) flu. It's a difficult time but we trust God will continue to work and move and provide opportunities to love and serve the forgotten people here in Mexico.
We are closely monitoring things here in the Baja/Ensenada area and will keep teams posted on any updates, outbreaks, etc. We have been developing a strong relationship with some local government organizations and in times like this, these relationships will be a strong asset and have been a great source of accurate information. We are also working on ways to continue to ensure health and safety to people living at at the camp. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
We are still committed at this point to our two mission experiences in Ensenada and Tijuana (GCH) this summer. We believe that God will open the doors for those ministries, as well as the others He brings your way, to happen and for the fruit to be even greater than our expectations....We appreciate your email alerts that give us a good perspective on how it is affecting you and potentially us.
Read our latest letter from EOC Director, Scott Wester, regarding about safety in Mexico
In regard to the recent concerns about safety in Mexico, I wanted to share a few comments from some recent team's experiences. Although each team has a unique experience serving in Mexico, one common experience shared by all teams over the 45+ years with YUGO is a wonderful experience with the people, culture & safe travels while in Mexico.
We are your host on the ground in Mexico, and if there is anything we can do to assist you in your preparations, or responding to concerns or questions you may be receiving, please don't hesitate to let us know.
We understand & believe that God is ultimately in control and has a purpose in our lives, but we also appreciate your position as a leader with many parents & families who want to know we are being responsible and proactive. I can assure you that we are continuing to closely monitor the border area (which contrary to media reports has seen a dramatic drop off in crime for the 2009 year, 80% below 2008 level in Tijuana), as well as practice safe and responsible ministry outreach in the communities of Ensenada. We continue to hold a weekly leadership briefing and review the situation and our operations. We have done a risk assessment & communicate with other Baja area ministries in an effort to be responsible stewards in our service to the Lord's Kingdom. We will continue to be proactive, and should the situation change, we will immediately communicate with you.
While this has been a tough year so far in cancelations, the teams that have come have experienced tremendous fruit. (see the following testimonials from some March & April leaders)
"Our latest mission trip to the EOC proved to be as safe and enjoyable as all our previous missions. Our group did not see or experience anything which made us feel uneasy. We are currently planning our next youth mission to the EOC and just can't wait!"
Adult & Youth Foreign Missions, St.Andrews United
Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
“Making decisions regarding the safety and security of others, especially someone’s teenagers, needs to be a ministry priority and a matter of prayer and trust in the Lord. With the recent media reports in Canada, we ensured our team members and their parents were well informed, including a personal letter from YUGO director Scot Wester. In the end the decision lies with the participant and their family, but as team leaders we encouraged each of our other 22 team members to join us for an incredible spiritual adventure, trusting the Lord for his protection and provisions, which we had done so many times already during the months of preparation as a team. We would often remind the team “This is missions, it’s not a holiday, its missions” in an effort to prepare their minds and hearts to serve. Our experience was no different than our trip in 2005 in regards to border crossing and security. We had security in the back of our mind at all times, as we did in 2005, and never had any reason to be fearful for our safety. It was a wonderful opportunity to grow in our faith and trust in the Lord. We are grateful to the YUGO staff for their ongoing ministry in Ensenada and look forward to working with them in the future.”
Les and Cheryl Priebe
Youth Pastors, Greenfield Baptist Church
Edmonton, AB, Canada
“Making a choice to carry on with our mission trip to Ensenada was undeniably the most difficult decision our team made throughout the process of this trip. We did what we could to responsibly gather information, alleviate our concerns and fears and make an informed choice from this distance. We researched the web for facts relating to the travel advisory, talked to Scott, our "eyes on the ground" at camp and prayed. Ultimately, we chose to trust the God that was calling us. We realized that there is a danger in all that we do, we recognized that Satan was trying to maximize on our fear and we determined that the risk was not greater than the calling. We carried on and saw nothing at any time that caused us concern. We never felt in any danger and were so blessed throughout the trip. The enemy did not gain ground but God won the victory as people gathered to pray for our team and we stepped out of the boat in faith and obedience. If you feel God is calling you then trust Him and GO.”
team leader, Unity Baptist Church
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada.
For further resources and responses to the concerns of violence in Mexico, click here
Im learning a bit about fullness these days. We have over 215 campers here this week, plus our staff and extra staff we've called in just for this week puts us at about 250 people on site! We have people sleeping in tight quarters, we have two dining halls, we have buses and vans, we have a full camp.
Amidst the busyness of a week of a week like this, amidst the running around, organizing, and answering questions...there's an excitement in having so many people here. full chapels. full worship. full community.
We are building 11 houses this week and 8 other ministries including a cement project, children's ministries, women's ministry, and clothing distribution. It's amazing how much work 215 people can do in only 4 days! Hundreds of lives are being touched this week... hundreds....
In these weeks of business I too am reminded in the need to be filled with his love, perseverance, patience, and Spirit. I need the fullness of God to be dwelling in me as I strive to serve and care for these teams and people. When i try to do it on my own strength, i run dry. i fall short. i mess up. and i don't see the fullness of God in what's happening around me. I end up missing those moments when a little bit of heaven crashes down to the earth. And i don't want to.
May you be filled with the fullness of God today...