Charting New Paths in Amecameca

Doorway to God's classroom

By Chris and Francelia Chavez McReynolds

In the town of Amecameca, in the state of Mexico, at the foot of the mountains just outside Mexico City, there is a small Presbyterian Church where seven adults and three children gather. We worship here with them and the pastor, Froilán Pichardo, when we are not on-the-road conducting AMO® Trainings around the country.

Yesterday, Francelia and the children, excitedly, began AMO – biblical, principle-based education for hearts and minds. Until now, the children met with the adults and had no classes of their own. They eagerly listened to what they would be learning about, and about the activities they could look forward to. Things like learning to reason with principles from the Bible, art, Christian history, and wonderful stories from Christian classic literature. They were fascinated when signing the AMO Compact, a tool to help nurture their Christian self-government. Even three year old Paula signed her mark with flair!

They listened intently to the story of the Good Shepherd told with, simple, little wooden figures. Their minds grabbed every detail as the Holy Spirit grabbed their hearts. They then reenacted the story for each other. Class ended and the children, with broad smiles, carried home the Prayer and Blessing cards – homework for their parents.

In the state of Mexico, the most densely populated in the nation, there is a lot of poverty. There is a lot of religious traditions and idolatry, saint worship, witchcraft, and even children who worship Santa Muerte. As veteran Pastor Froilán can tell you, there is often fierce resistance to the Gospel. Millions of families endure dark and painful family histories where history repeats itself, generation after generation. We all know from the Bible, and in our hearts, that this is not God’s plan.

Instead, God’s Word teaches that each child, made in His image, has great potential and a divine purpose for their life, right where they live. As we prepare more teachers to work with children and their parents – using God’s Word to nurture that great potential – we ask for your prayers.

Pray for families across the nation who are taking God’s Scriptures seriously and submitting their lives to Him for daily transformation in their families and the nation. Pray for our four new AMO Trainers, set for final evaluation and certification in June. We ask also for your prayers for the upcoming AMO Training in Tabasco, the last week of this month. Thank you, for praying!

Retelling the story of the Good Shepherd

We are part of His-story!

Amecameca classroom

Words, the keys to new ideas!

Iztaccihuatl from street

Street view in Amecameca

Volcano Popocatéptl

Volcano Popocatéptl

In front of classroom

Francelia, Paula, Antipas, and Tamara in front of their humble, yet blessed, classroom.

Taking Charge in Puebla

By Chris and Francelia McReynolds

We began this New Year back in Puebla. School director, Sara Chavez, invited us back to respond to a growing number of people concerned about their children’s education. Poor education and destructive cultural influences are taking their toll on families. The biblical mandate, taught in AMO, for parents to be actively in charge of their children’s education is motivating some to seek new solutions.

With official validation in Mexico available through testing for children who are outside the traditional public school setting, some parents and church leaders are venturing out to form their own schools.  As mentioned in a previous post, Liliana Rojas founded a school based on the biblical principles she learned in AMO, last summer.  That school needed to relocate and, so, fused with the school that Sara Chavez directs. Liliana has, since, founded a second school.  Leaders from two other Christian schools attended last week’s AMO training and a few other participants were considering schools at their churches.

These schools are typically very small, from 10 to 200 students. Several are using a biblically focused, online platform, by Curriculum is available for math, science, language, and more. “We are using AMO Program to train and guide our teachers for student’s Christian character formation, Bible, Christian history, and classic literature classes. We use as a tool for learning different subject matter” said Liliana.

We’ve seen schools that have very scant resources and facilities to schools that are very well equipped and inviting. Many teachers and helpers volunteer their time or take a very minimal wage. Some teach at public schools, or other jobs, part of the day and at their church school the rest of the day. One school is charging about $90 US per student per month.

“Parents are very pleased” says AMO teacher, Erika Trujillo. She added, “when we moved our school from one side of the city to the other, we thought we would lose some students. The parents told us ‘it doesn’t matter where you move to, we want our children in your school!” The children we met expressed satisfaction, as well.

One young boy recounted (for ten minutes!) about the classic Heidi that he and his classmates are studying in AMO’s literature class. Others said they like their school because it is “tranquilo” (peaceful, i.e. safe).

Your prayers and support helps us train parents and teachers for these children…the future of Mexico. Thank you!

Young artists sharing what they learned in the AMO training

Young artists sharing what they learned in the AMO training

Those we trained in Puebla

Those we trained in Puebla

Erika's artwork

Erika’s artwork

Teachers at El Shadai Christian School in Puebla

Teachers at El Shadai Christian School in Puebla