tapé (tah PAY), n.

a way or path

Many peoples will come and say, "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD... He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths." Isaiah 2:3

The Hagerman Family
Carapeguá, Paraguay

May-June, 2010 May is officially the month of mothers here, and also the month to celebrate Paraguay’s Independence Day. Because the colors of their flag are red, white, and blue like ours, it makes us feel like we’re celebrating the 4th of July all month long. May includes many celebrations because not only are the Paraguayans very patriotic, they also hold their mothers in high regard. This isn’t always obvious from the sometimes witnessed mistreatment of women in this society, but practically every child and adult will tell you that “Mamá” is the most important person in their lives. Some of this is because the Virgin Mary is such a focus here, and in a way I can’t really explain, all women get honored or placed in higher regard because of HER status in society. Another reason is that the women of Paraguay are hard-workers (they use the word “guapa”-pronounced GWAH-pah, to describe someone who works hard). Many of them are hand-washing their clothes, cooking from scratch, tending a garden, raising farm animals, caring for their children, and sometimes also working an outside job. Saúl did a special radio program the weekend of Mothers’ Day, with call-in (well, “textin”) comments and giveaway prizes. He was able to share scripture of the virtuous woman and God’s idea for womanhood. June was pretty much overtaken by the FIFA World Cup, a worldwide soccer tournament being held in South Africa. This happens every four years, but I have to admit that I’d only heard of it since moving here. Teams from all over the world qualify to enter the tournament and prepare for years to come against some fierce competition. When Paraguay is playing, the world here shuts down. Class is over, there’s no one driving around, and if you enter a business, they are likely to have a TV set up and all be gathered around it watching. This has created a great opportunity for us to open the doors and meet more folks in the community, by broadcasting the games and sharing popcorn and kool-aid.

May and June have been two months full of ups and downs personally. We found out recently that Ken has a valve in his heart that isn’t functioning correctly, and will have to be replaced surgically if God does not intervene miraculously. He is currently taking medicine to combat the side effects of the heart defect, but the medicines are almost worse than the condition. Your prayers are appreciated for God’s healing hand in Ken’s body. We also learned that Christie’s dad was in a very serious motorcycle accident. Once again, God spared Phil’s life, and he is recovering in Minnesota with Christie’s brother, Dino. We celebrated Ken’s 40 th birthday here with 50 of our closest Paraguayan friends, and with Christie’s mom and her husband, Tommy. They happened to be here on a short visit, and we enjoyed the time we spent with them. Hollie is finishing out her 6-month internship with us this month, so it’s a bittersweet time of watching her soak in every activity and opportunity to enjoy Paraguay and minister to the people here. We are getting excited about the two months we’ll be visiting the U.S. and hope we’ll be able to touch base with those of you in the South Carolina area. If you’d like to schedule us to come speak, please contact us soon (email addy on next page). We are really looking forward to the time we’ll have to reconnect with everyone there in October and November!

Material and physical needs are very common and plenteous here, and it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of people that live without what we’d call basic necessities. It’s been a process for us, learning what really IS a necessity and what is a “creature comfort” in a developing country. The reality is that we can’t meet every need—we can’t clothe every person, we can’t bring every street child into our home, we can’t build a home for every family. Learning to live with that realization isn’t always easy. There are times, though, when God uses His ways to provide for a need, and we get to be part of seeing it come to pass. Recently, this has happened several times. Juancho, the cute litte fellow at the left, lives in our neighborhood. He usually runs around barefooted and has been given “grace” by his school to be allowed to come even though he doesn’t have the proper uniform or supplies. His grandmother came to us one day to ask if we’d help him get shoes for the cold weather, and a backpack, and I told her we’d try. We honestly didn’t have the money when she asked, but this is a family we’d been praying for, and this was their first “friendly” contact. It seemed like God was up to something. Within a couple of days, a business man in town asked us to do him a favor. He needed some help navigating ebay, and well, we Americans know our ebay. The bottom line is that Ken helped the man save a lot of money to get an automobile part he needed, and the man insisted on giving Ken 100,000 guaranies ($20)--EXACTLY the amount of money we needed to buy Juancho some tennis shoes, socks, and a backpack—the Mickey Mouse one he’d been wanting. A couple weeks later, my mom and stepdad arrived with an envelope for us. It was an offering taken up by a small church near where I (Christie) grew up. We decided to use the money toward something to help youth or children here, since it was an offering from the young folks at their church. We’d planned to buy gloves but the store that had them on sale was all sold out. I was disappointed that we couldn’t afford enough of them at the normal price. So we went to weekly Bible class at the little school that was going to receive the gloves, and there were two little girls there (in the picture at the right), who walk quite a long distance to school each day. Neither of them had shoes. They were borrowing a broken pair of flip-flops from their aunt, and trading them off every so often throughout the day. I looked at the little envelope with the offering, ran to the store, and had just enough to get a pair of socks and tennis shoes for each of them. God never ceases to amaze us with His provision.

Thank you again for making it possible for us to minister in this beautiful country. It’s hard to put words to the feeling of doing what you know God has called you to do, but there’s such satisfaction in living in His plan, and we know we couldn’t do it without the prayers, support, and encouragement of you all. We really appreciate the honor of serving God in Paraguay and love that you’re a part of that, too!

---Ken, Christie, Camille, and Caroline

God bless you! ¡Dios le bendiga! (Spanish) Ñandejára tanderovasa! (Guarani)
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Telephone in Paraguay: 595-985-782-928 Skype number: 864-343-1731 Donations are received through our local church: Carolina Heights CoGoP 2900 Anderson Road Greenville, SC 29611 (Please write “Hagerman Missions” on check memo. All donations are tax deductible.) Email: hagerman100@yahoo.com Webpages: www.hagermans.blogspot.com www.tapemissions.org