Putnam (Dominican Republic) Update – December 2021

The Fruits of His Word 

The Schumann Putnam Family Newsletter
Christmas 2021

Great is Thy Faithfulness – As we look back on this past year, we are truly thankful for the Lord’s provision and protection. On March 15, Carlos had a massive heart attack and was medically evacuated from the Dominican Republic to Florida.  We were able to receive very good care in Florida and spent a total of 3 months there in recovery.  Carlos’ heart suffered severe damage but by the mercies of God, he is doing well and feels great.  We were tremendously blessed to see how the Lord stirred up His Church to pray for Carlos and his doctors – the outpouring of support from around the world was overwhelming and provided daily encouragement.  We are thankful for the support that you all extended to us at this time.

LWML Convention – Danelle spoke as an invited missionary guest at the Lutheran Women’s Missionary League convention in Lexington, Kentucky, in June.  This was Carlos’ first LWML convention and we had a great time connecting with people, getting lots of hugs from wonderful ladies, and being filled with God’s Word.  We have been very blessed by the financial support of the LWML over the years, in particular for the group home in the Dominican Republic and deaconess training in Latin America and the Caribbean.  Thank you to all the LWML ladies who generously give of their mites so that people around the world can know Jesus.

Deaconess Program – Danelle continues to help form women to be deaconesses in the countries of Mexico, Guatemala, Panamá, Dominican Republic and Venezuela. During 2021 we taught Martin Luther’s Small Catechism, Law and Gospel, and Old Testament I.  We have also had Zoom workshops on Ministering to women who have suffered a miscarriage or still birth and Caring for the Sick and Dying. The women just have 2 courses left to finish the program – Lutheran Confessions and Diaconal Care. We are excited that we can teach the last courses in person! This will be a wonderful time of studying God’s Word and fellowship after the long pandemic.  Many of the women have had to work extra hard as they have limited or no internet access for the on-line courses – some travel to neighboring congregations or only have a cell phone to be able to connect to join in the Zoom class.

Deaconess Fieldwork The deaconess students also started doing field work in their congregations and community in the areas of Christian education, spiritual care, or work of mercy. Their field work is supervised by their pastor.
Deaconess students dispense food and clothing to homeless Warao Indians living under a bridge in Ciudad Bolivar, Venezuela

Deaconess student, Martina, from Guasave, Mexico, started a women’s group and is getting Sunday school running again after the pandemic. These are the children that are learning about Jesus!

Luther Academy – Carlos’ ministry with Luther Academy has had to adapt to the pandemic.  Luther Academy provides continuing education for pastors. Activities this year were focused on online pastoral meetings in the countries of Mexico, Guatemala and Panama.  This was a time of Bible Study and discussion of different issues facing pastors.
Carlos also translated theological material for pastors and students and is working on developing a database for the theological journal “Logia” so that pastors in Latin American and the Caribbean and have easier access to this resource.  Carlos also been creating Bible study manuals on topics taught by Luther Academy in its lectures so that pastors can easily teach to their congregation what they have learned.

The new Lutheran Hymnal in Spanish will soon be available to the congregations in Latin America and the Caribbean. Luther Academy aims to help introduce the hymnal to churches by providing theological and practical support. Small conferences will be organized to talk about the theology of worship and the different services in the hymnal, as well as the doctrine contained in hymns and their catechetical and pastoral use. Workshops will be held for musicians throughout the region to prepare the way for its use in congregations.

Developmental Disability Ministry – In September, as part of orientation, Danelle taught a developmental disability ministry workshop to the pastoral students of Concordia Seminary in the Dominican Republic. Students were given the opportunity to prepare and do a devotion in the group home and do visits to families with children with disabilities.  This is a wonderful opportunity for the seminary students to learn how to work and minister with people with developmental disabilities and their families. These are lessons that they can take with them to their countries of service throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. We are thankful that they are learning to share the love of Christ with people with developmental disabilities and their families. 

Please pray for: Continued good health for Carlos; for Danelle as she coordinates the deaconess program; for the deaconess students as they share Jesus’ love in their fieldwork; and for Carlos’ work with the hymnal project.

Thank you, in Jesus’ name!

Copyright © 2021, Danelle Putnam – All rights reserved.
The Fruits of His Word – February 2021

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Danelle Putnam, LCMS Missionary to the Dominican Republic · C/ 12 · Cerro Alto · Santiago · Dominican Republic

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