Answering the Call--a walk of faith
Dr. Erik Estrada answered a call to adopt children after having 3 of his own. The idea came from his youngest son who overheard men from a partnership of the Presbyterian church in Venice, Florida and the local Guatemalan church in La Esquintla. The group came to Dr. Erik asking him to support an orphanage project costing $80,000. Dr. Erik suggested starting small using empty rooms in the church. The Presbytery rejected the idea but Dr. Erik's son loved it. He said, "Daddy, we have rooms in our house, why don't we adopt the children?"
Dr. Erik, a seminary trained pastor, saw the overwhelming medical needs of his country just like Woody Woodson did while in Guatemala with his family decades ago. Dr. Erik responded to God's call and the medical need by going to medical school. Now he has multiple clinics in southwest Guatemala. Woody responded to God's call by creating Vine International based here in Knoxville.
Now the two organizations have met. The common ground is through the AVA project. Vine is supplying the needed antibiotics, vitamins and anti-parasitic medicine, purchased though generous donations. Dr. Erik, along with several other chosen Guatemalan doctors and clinics, are supplying the patients, expertise and care that it takes to deliver medicine in a prudent way. We share the vision of presenting Jesus as Lord to the Guatemalan world.
The rest of Dr, Erik’s story is positioned right in the middle of God's great plan. When the church leaders surprisingly returned to Dr. Erik's home a year later, they noticed that his house was occupied by children they had not seen before. They asked him where the children came from and Dr. Erik told them the story and respond to God's call: caring for orphans. In response, the Presbytery turned their attention towards Dr. Erik's clinic needs. They looked at architectural plans Dr. Erik had to build and agreed to help build the clinic that now contains multiple physicians, a dentist, resident and nursing training. He now has satellite clinics to reach more underserved people.
The Asociación Christiana Clinicas y Hospitals and Vine International will partner together to serve the forgotten people in the name of the Lord and for His glory.
Wednesday I will be flying to Beirut, Lebanon to serve with a small group from Knoxville. We will meet up with Russian and Lebanese followers of Jesus.. The trip will include a weekend of preaching and a week of teaching. It will also include medical care as well. Please pray for us. The mixture of Islamic, Jewish and “Christian” influence will be a different experience for me.
Blessings to you my friends and family, Bruce