Where: Ica, Peru (El Carmen, San Juan Bautista)
When: Anytime!!! (now that we have a full time missionary family running the mission, they are ready to receive visitors, helpers, participants, teachers, etc. anytime with little exception!
Why Here?: Good question, and there is a great deal of good you can bring with you here, and a tremendous number of reasons to come here. Here's a whole separate (click me!) web page on why we are where we are and what brought us here and what to expect.
Advanced Planning: Since we now have a permanent mission management family in place, one can plan a visit and stay anytime - just let us know. If you want to stay at the mission (now possible with two dormitories, sleep up to 15 to 20 people) just write or call us and we will work out all the logistics with you. That planning can include a short stay in Miraflores (Lima coastal area) for your arrival and departure in Peru.
- Time of day: Peru does not practice daylight savings time, so half the year it is the same timezone as NY/Miami, the other half it is the same as Chicago/Dallas. It is either 2 or 3 hours ahead of Pacific Time.)
- Time of Year: Plan your seasons around the southern hemisphere, during Christmas it's summer weather and it's winter in June!! The location of the mission and Lima are coastal elevations and definitely 12 month accessible areas, but just so you are aware of the climate seasons.
- What to Wear: In the winter, jackets and sweaters are advisable, although often needed only in the evenings. In the summer, it can get pretty hot from noon till 4pm, but the Mission's 9 foot ceilings are very cool inside (villagers stop by all the time to enjoy). Summer is great for Harvest festival in February, when all the grapes come in. Summer is also best if you are planning any side trips to the mountains (Cusco, Machu Pichu, Puno, Titicaca) which are far cooler in the winter but do get 12 month tourism as well. Winter is my favorite time of year (summer in the USA) cause it's the coolest weather.
Cost: Airfare will be your biggest cost by far, but being in our same hemisphere far far more economical than a Europe, Africa or Asia flight. In fact, most people can do a round trip flight to Peru far cheaper than most round trips in the USA. Also, being in northern end of South America, Peru is far less expensive than traveling further to Argentina or Chile.
Depending on the season and timing, there are great buys to be found. Assume from $500 to $900 roundtrip for the airfare portion, from LA area, a hundred dollars or more cheaper from east coast cities. Round trips through Miami are definitely the most economical. We have San Diegoans loving flying down from Tijuana through Mexico City, and there are many other connections through Latin American carriers with hubs in Panama, El Salvador and Mexico. Best air fare deals are offered about two months prior to your trip, as long as you are avoiding the normal holiday blackout dates.
Airfare aside (which we can only guide you on), we can help you minimize and control the rest of the cost on a missionary trip (including all ground transportation, meals and lodging). Regardless of where you are coming from, for planning purposes, for a one week trip, plan to budget $350* plus airfare per person. This will cover:
- Taxi pickup (& return) between Lima airport and Miraflores (Lima) lodging;
- Lodging in Miraflores for 1 (or 2) nights arrival, depending on arrival time; and a night before departure;
- Escort services from Lima to Ica to Mission and back (again, assuming 4 our more people);
- Taxi to/from bus depot in Lima & Miraflores;
- Bus transport between Lima to Ica;
- Taxi transport to/from Ica to Mission in El Carmen, San Juan Bautista district;
- lodging at Mission in El Carmen (cost based on number of days);
- 2 meals a day for 6 days a week (assuming on your own meals 1 day a week).
(*add/subtract about $13-$15 lodging/meals, $10 for lodging only, for each additional days stay at the mission, these prices assume 4 or more people, slightly more if fewer.)
Of course any side trips (extra transportation, extra spending, food, shopping etc.) would not be included in the above costs. Please feel free to ask us any and all questions though on things to see, economical ways to travel, recommendations, etc. [Important: If you are planning a trip/visit for 6 weeks or more, a totally separate far lower housing cost structure is available for you. Please inquire about 'long term' missionary costs.]
In 2014, we had two construction trips which 'shelled out' the 2nd and 3rd floors.
In 2015, we completed these upper floors for use (stucco, paint, electric, lighting, plumbing, tile, fixtures, internet and more) also added bedding for visiting missionaries.
Outreach is the primary purpose of what this mission is built for, and that is what focus is needed by most of those visiting. We also have a weekly OANSA youth activity group (Spanish for AWANA). Both of these functions are directed strongly by our partners from Ica, El Shaddai Communidad Christiana. We have great communities in nearby San Pedro, Altura, Invacion and el Olivos, as well as here in El Carmen.
Due to the fantastic efforts of our first long term missionaries, the Sanchez's (who also are the mission managers), they are very much asking for more to join them. We have one other long term missionary (18 months) committed to join them in November, 2016, God bless her. Still we can use more. With this in mind, in August of 2016 we broke ground for a 2nd building in the back that will be an additional large classroom/meeting area, as well as eventually have private quarters on the 2nd floor for up to 4 long-term missionaries to live. If this is a possible consideration for you, please do inquire.
There are families that need assistance, construction, house additions, repairs, food, clothing, love, soccer/volley/basketball participation, pen pals, movie night, english lessons, kite flying contests, prayer, bible leadership, support, etc. We try to have outreaches of all sorts for the communities. Come and enjoy these people, their needs, their compassion, share your love with them, you will get it back tenfold.
Purpose: Past outreaches have left a strong relationship with community, and much is left to do. Primary construction is behind us. We seek missionary-minded individuals (short or long term) to utilize the mission to outreach to the surrounding communities of El Carmen, El Olivos, San Pedro, Altura and Invacion, to show Christ's love and compassion to these residents. Prior outreaches brought in eye exams, reading glasses, dental checkups, dental hygiene training, toys, bibles, shoes, sandals and clothing. We have complete curriculum for teaching English as well now and worship leaders, testamonies, skit performers, and general outreach participants are all very much sought after.
The mission organization has been doing work in this district even before it had walls up!! Now that the mission is built, we can do even more!! Join us, and be part of a legacy that this community is strongly in need of and is very appreciative of!! We have a strong church youth support that comes up weekly from Ica to work with the missionaries as well. We know not what the final goal for this Mission is, but the immediate one is to show the poor people of San Juan Bautista district that Jesus loves them and He is here to stay and not just 'passing through'.
Need: Laborers, Teachers and Evangelists
If the Lord puts in your heart to go please contact us by phone, regular mail or email. We would be more than willing to discuss this mission and the area with your church or support group as well.
"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." - Matthew 28:19-30