Posts Tagged ‘Pastor Ivan and Rocio Casados’

The Joy of a Changed Life!

Pastor Ivan with the people from the church who were baptized

On Sunday, September 16th Mexico celebrated their independence. The church also celebrated our liberty. Christ makes us free!

One of the most gratifying things in life and ministry is seeing a life transformed. This Sunday Dawn and I joined our good friends Pastor Ivan & Rocio Casados and their church for a special day of celebration. While we were with them we heard the testimony of eight people who had given their lives to Christ. Then we saw their joy and excitement as they were baptized.

God in his grace and mercy had touched each of these new believers with the good news of Jesus Christ.

Margarito and Lizet’s Testimony

Margarito and Lizet

Ivan introduced Dawn and me to Margarito and Lizet. The Lord brought them to the church 6 months ago. They were walking along the road and they noticed a group building a home on a hill in the neighborhood. The group was very friendly and they asked Margarito and Lizet if they would like some tacos. They said, “sure.”

The friendliness of the group was attractive to Margarito and Lizet, so when they invited them to visit their church they agreed to come. Ivan didn’t know it at the time, but his new friends were going through tremendous struggles. They were constantly fighting, and getting on each other’s nerves. They were also very poor, and they were having a hard time staying in business selling their products. It’s seemed like everything was stacked against them.

Margarito and Lizet decided to give the church a try. When they visited the church they found a loving group of people. As Ivan and Rocio begin to minister to the couple they noticed the problems they were going through, but they knew that Christ has the power to restore. Ivan and Rocio sowed the seed of the gospel and Margarito and Lizet were ripe for the gospel.

When Dawn and I talked to Margarito and Lizet they were smiling and seemed to be genuinely happy and in love. They told us how much they used to fight, and how the Lord had graciously delivered them.

God’s Grace Brings About Change!

Pastor Ivan sharing the good news of Christ!

The other people that were being baptized also had inspiring testimonies. God is on the move in this church and beyond!

This is the reason we plant churches. It’s not to have a nice building, but because these churches are sharing the love of Christ, which is creating real life transformation. Thank you, Jesus! Thank you for your faithfulness!

Continue to pray for Ivan and Rocio as they reach out in the community of Valle Verde and Bosque de Ribera.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Excited to See the Church Grow

 

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Dawn with Pastor Ivan and his wife Rocio

Today Dawn and I are off to Mexico City. Then on Saturday, I will be going to Cuba to minister with our friends from Los Pinos. Before I talk about these trips I’d like to highlight one of the ministries that we work closely with on the border.

 

Just over three years ago, we helped Ministerios Transformación plant a church in Ribera del Bosque, which is a community in Tijuana. Our good friends, Pastor Ivan Casados and his wife, Rocio lead this church. It’s been exciting for us to watch them grow as leaders as the church has grown.

Choice Servants – Ivan and Rocio Casados

 

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Pastor Ivan Casados & Rocio in front of their church

Ivan and Rocio love our family. They were deeply moved when they heard that Hannah had passed away. When I told Ivan he started to cry, which meant a great deal to me, because I knew he loved Hannah and our family.

 

We give thanks to the Lord for such special and dear friends. I remember not long after we helped build Ivan’s church, that he had the vision to see the church grow. He wanted to build a second floor so that they could use the bottom floor for fellowship and outreach to children. Dawn and I visited the church last week, and it filled our hearts to see the realization of Ivan’s dream. They just recently added a second floor.

They are still working towards putting in a kitchen and developing a breakfast program for children in the neighborhood. One of the many things I love about Ivan and Rocio and all my friends at Ministerios Transformación is that they have a deep desire to make a difference in the community. They are always looking for ways to minister to those in need. The church is truly a light in a dark place. Hallelujah!

As Dawn and I visited with Ivan and Rocio they shared about a friend in the church named Aaron. Aaron has a serious injury to his foot, which has partially crippled him. Hannah and Dawn prayed for Aaron over the past two years. They prayed for healing.

Aaron gave a testimony in church recently about how the Lord was healing his foot, and how it felt so much better. He remembered the prayers of Hannah and Dawn and he gave thanks for them. That news filled our hearts. Thank you, Jesus!

Pray With Us!

Continue to pray for Ivan and Rocio as they seek to make a difference in Ribera del Bosque.

 

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Dave with some of our friends that we work with in Cuba: Frank, Ariadna & Melissa

Dawn and I would like to ask prayer for our time in Mexico City, and my time in Cuba. We will be visiting our campus ministers right after we land today. Then I will leave for Cuba on the 17th, and Dawn will stay in Mexico City during that time. I will be working with the leaders in Habana. Many of them are growing as coaches, and I’m ministering with a team to train them further in their coaching skills. It’s always a rich blessing for me to be with our brothers and sisters in Cuba. They have such a warm and loving spirit.

 

I do give thanks to the Lord for all the good things that He has done!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

The Kingdom is Advancing!
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Dave & Dawn – Thankful for all the good years that the Lord has given us!

Dawn and I have endured some heart ache over the last few months, but the Lord uses many avenues to lift us up. One of them is seeing the church grow. We love to see the Kingdom advance.

I remember when we were thinking about moving from Colorado to the border we dreamed about being involved in a church planting movement. We prayed that the Lord would connect us with like-minded godly men and women who had a heart to see God’s kingdom advance.

Wonderful Church Planters
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Dave & Dawn with Ivan and Rocio

Over the last few days we’ve met with and been in communication with a number of our church planting couples. Tonight we met with Ivan and Rocio Casados. We helped them plant their church with Ministerios Transformación (MT) three years ago. The church is growing, and they’ve just finished a building project so they have more room for the people who God is bringing to them.

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Obed & Cesiah with their family and Pastor Daniel Nuñez on Inauguration day

On Wednesday night we met with Obed and Cesiah Lares who we helped start a church with MT on October 16 last year. The first service was just two days before Hannah passed away. Obed and Cesiah shared how they are reaching out in the community and more families are starting to come to the church and grow in their faith.

Pastor Victor and Sol

Pastor Victor and Sol

Recently Dawn and I were with Victor and Sol Bravo who we helped launch their work with MT in March of 2015. Obed and Cesiah came out of their church. This church is not only growing and reaching out to orphans in the community, but they sent out a pastor and his wife to start a new church just a little over a year after they started their church.

Petri & Yudy’s New Work in Ensenada: Renuevo
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Renuevo’s First Service

Just last Sunday Petri and Yudy Petrikowski started their first service. Dawn and I were able to be with them and we helped commissioned them as they were sent out from their home church, La Nueva Jerusalén. Petri and Yudy are planting this church with the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico. Every time Dawn and I are with them we come away encouraged and impressed by how the Lord is using them to reach out to their friends.

We Give Thanks for Our Valuable Partners in Ministry
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Dave and Dawn with two great friends and partners in ministry, JD Pearring and Daniel Nuñez

The three churches with Ministerios Transformación are reaching out in urban poor neighborhoods. MT has built homes for some of the needy people in the community. They are doing some amazing things to make a huge difference in people’s lives. The Ministerios Transformación network has started 30 churches in 10 years!

God is using them to bring about change in the communities where the churches are ministering. They are great partners and friends. Apart from helping them plant churches we’ve been able to partner with them on training church planters and coaches for ministry.

We have two church planting projects with the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico. One in La Paz, which is the capital of Southern Baja California, and the one in Ensenada Petri and Yudy are leading.

All these church planters that I’ve mentioned here as well as others like Pastor Daniel and Yolanda Nuñez are great friends. I don’t have space to mention all the wonderful pastors and friends that the Lord has given us.

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Dave training church planters

I just want to say that God is doing a work here. His Spirit is moving, and I believe that we are just beginning. We are going to see even greater things! 

This is happening, because of the hard work and the prayers of many people. You’ve played a part as you’ve prayed with us and for us. Dawn and I give thanks for you, and we pray that the Lord will bring even more to stand with us on this great journey of faith! For His honor and glory. Hallelujah!

In His Grip, Dave Diaso

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Tragedy of Death and Hope in 2016
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Our last family photo with Hannah

When I look back over this last year there are a number of wonderful accomplishments that we’ve seen the Lord do. Unfortunately, all of these achievements are overshadowed by Hannah’s death. It makes me feel like we are ending 2016 on a down note. There have been plenty of down days since Hannah’s passing. Yet, I see the Lord picking each of us up, Dawn, David Jr., Jonathan and me.

Yes, death is a terrible, even demonic and cruel thing. I believe and feel that this is true in a more intense way that I ever have. While I recognize the pain and the tragedy of death, and Hannah’s early homegoing I see the Lord lifting us up from the ashes. We are down, but not out. I believe our family has drawn closer to the Lord than we have ever been. In many ways I sense that God is not done with us, but just beginning. He is going to bring something beautiful out of our pain, even if we can’t see what that is yet.

We may be going through “The Valley of the Shadow of Death,” but this shadow has not completely snuffed out the light. Jesus did some amazing things in 2016 that we should celebrate.

Accomplishments by God’s Grace
The inaugural service for Ministerios Transformación in Rosarito. Church #29

The inaugural service for Ministerios Transformación in Rosarito. Church #29

This year by God’s grace we:

  • Helped start our 5th new church planting project with Ministerios Transformación since 2012. It was Ministerios Transformación’s 29th church!
  • Pastor Obed Lares and his wife Cesiah are off to a great start in this new church in Rosarito, just South of Tijuana.
  • Partnered with in planting, coaching and training Pastor Daniel Nuñez and the ministry of Ministerios Transformación
  • Coached and partnered with Pastor Victor Bravo and his wife, Sol who are seeing people come to Christ and lives transformed in the church plant they are serving at in Plan Libertador that we helped start in 2015. Every time I talk to Victor and Sol I come away encouraged.
  • Coached and partnered with Pastor Ivan Casados and his wife, Rocio. They are making a difference as they are reaching out in Ribera del Bosque. We helped plant their church in 2014.
  • Coached and helped launch a new work called Renuevo in Ensenada. Pastor Petri and his wife, Yudy are leading this new church planting project.
  • Led 1 medical missions brigade with Redeemer San Diego & La Nueva Jerusalén in Ensenada, Mexico. We ministered to more than 80 adults and children, and 9 of them gave their lives to Christ.
  • Led one summer VBS in Ensenada with Skyview Presbyterian and La Nueva Jerusalén for 50 children and presented the gospel to them along with their families
  • Started a two-year incubator training for 10 church planters in Tijuana
  • Began a coaching network for pastors and their wives in Mexico
  • Began to coach pastors and train coaches in Cuba – this is a new and exciting ministry that the Lord is opening up for us.
Our beautiful daughter and beloved sister, Hannah

Our beautiful daughter and beloved sister, Hannah. We miss her dearly

I don’t fully know why we experienced such a huge loss this year, but I believe one reason is because our enemy is not happy with all that God is doing. He desires to discourage us and defeat us. Yet, our Lord lifts us up and gives us victory. All our many friends are praying for us, which sustains us. So I will praise Jesus. Hallelujah!

My family and I stand with Job in stating, “Though he slay me, I will hope in him…” (Job 13:15a)

Thanks for joining us on this journey. Praise God with us for sustaining us, and giving us so many victories in Christ.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Incubator Church Planting Training
Church planting incubator training

Church planting incubator training

Pastor Ivan and I met this week to work with on planning and preparing for the incubator church planting training. Next Thursday we start our second phase of the training with 11 men who are involved in different phases of planting a church.

We believe that this training is a huge step forward in seeing our leaders here on the border and in the Baja better equipped to lead their churches!

Ivan went through the incubator training with our partners at the Church Planting Center in Monterrey, Mexico. Now that Ivan’s finished the course he is helping us train others. It’s exciting to see his progression, and to have him as part of our training team.

New Life in a Funeral Home
Dave & Dawn with Pastor Ivan and Rocio and their son Brandon

Dave & Dawn with Pastor Ivan and Rocio and their son Brandon

After the meeting Ivan was sharing with me some wonderful stories of how the Lord is working in his church that he started 2 years ago. He told me about Orlando and Martha Castro and their daughter, Diana.

Ivan and Rocio met Diana a few years ago as they were ministering in another church, and although she is young she has a real love for the Lord. She prayed for her parents that the Lord would touch their hearts. Then about one month ago Orlando and Martha started attending the church. Diana cried with tears of joy when her parents came to the church.

Unfortunately, about a week ago Orlando’s father died. Ivan was concerned that Orlando might blame God and stop coming to church. He felt like he should go visit Orlando and his family, so Ivan and Rocio went to the funeral home to show their love and support to the family. While visiting the family and paying their respects, to Ivan’s surprise Orlando asked him if he wold preach at the funeral home.

Ivan shared the gospel, the love of Christ with all Orlando’s family and friends. After he preached about the hope that we have in Christ he invited them to place their faith in Christ, and eight of them prayed with Ivan and put their faith in Christ! Hallelujah!

God indeed does work in mysterious and marvelous ways. He’s always working, we just have to be sensitive and look for it.

Thank the Lord with me for the wonderful work he is doing through Ivan and Rocio Casados in Tijuana, Mexico!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Mixups & Celebrations!
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Pastor Daniel Nuñez, Dave & Pastor Ivan Casados

It seems that the last couple of weeks I’ve experienced a few mixups!

The exciting thing is that despite these minor challenges the churches are growing, communities are being changed and there is much to celebrate.

Last week Dawn, Hannah and I went to first year anniversary celebration with Ministerios Transformación in Plan Libertador. Unbeknownst to me the time of the service was changed, so that we arrived four hours early. Yesterday, we went to Ribera de Bosque’s second year anniversary. There were a few more mixups as pastor Ivan Casados and I had some trouble with our internet communication during the week. On a positive note, we did arrive at the service when it started this time.

Much Life & Much to Celebrate!
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Pastor Daniel Nuñez

My family and I love our friends at Ministerios Transformación and it is so good to be able to celebrate their accomplishments!

There’s much life in these churches. Pastor Daniel Nuñez preached a grace filled and wonderfully challenging message. After the service he invited those who wanted prayer to come up to the front. Dawn, Hannah and I were able to join in and pray for some of those that asked for prayer. It’s so fulfilling to be able to minister as a family.

I love seeing the Lord work through Dawn and Hannah!

New Life in Christ
Celebrating finishing the roof on the church

Building the Ministerios Transformación Ribera de Bosque church two years ago

After the service Pastor Ivan asked me if I could share with some of the people that I prayed for. A brother and sister, Jose Luis and Rocio.

A family from the church invited them to come, and Jose Luis and Rocio just started coming to the church in the last few weeks. I asked them if they were to die today if they knew for sure that they would go to heaven? This opened the door to further discussion about how they could be sure.

The wonderful message of the grace and work of Jesus Christ. It’s a life changing message. After explaining the gospel, I asked them if they would like to place their faith in Christ, and they said yes! Alicia their friend who invited them to church came over with us.

Then we led them in prayer to give their lives to Christ.

A wonderful experience!

One of the things I love most about the ministry is leading people to Christ. It’s so exciting to see people’s eyes light up and come to faith. It was extra special that we could do it in their new church. Pastor Ivan and some of the others in the church came over and congratulated them and told them welcome into the family of God.

There is much new life in these churches, and it’s always a privilege for Dawn, Hannah and me when we can participate with them.

Celebrate with us! Pray that the gospel will continue to go forth in a mighty and powerful way in Tijuana, the Baja and Beyond!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

 

Two Significant Achievements!
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Celebrating the first year anniversary at Plan Libertador in Rosarito

Today was two churches that we are connected with celebrated a significant achievement. Pastor Victor Bravo and his wife, Sol celebrated the first year anniversary of their church in Rosarito. Pastor Ivan Casados and his wife, Rocio celebrated the second anniversary of their church in Tijuana Ribera de Bosque.

Dawn and I take great joy in the growth of these two churches as we partnered with Ministerios Transformación to help plant them.

It’s a beautiful thing to see a church planted. To have the love of Christ invade a community where there was darkness.

Victor & Sol Bravo in Rosarito
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Pastor Victor Bravo & Sol with Pastor Daniel Nuñez & Yolanda

This morning Dawn, Hannah and I went to see Victor and Sol to celebrate with them. Unfortunately, we got the times mixed up and missed the celebration, but we had a wonderful time praying with and encouraging Victor and Sol as they ministered to us as well.

In the community of Plan Libertador in Rosarito where Victor and Sol’s church is planted just a year ago there was not a church to be found. The light of Christ has literally invaded the darkness. Many in the community have given their lives to Christ. God is on the move, and there is a sense of excitement.

Victor and Sol have an infectious enthusiasm. Their love for Christ and love for the people is readily apparent. I always come away encouraged after I’ve spent some time with them!

Ivan & Rocio Casados in Ribera de Bosque
Dave with Pastor Ivan Casados and his wife Rocio and Aaron at a church we helped plant in 2014

Pastor Ivan Casados & Rocio with Aaron & Dave

A similar story can be told about Ivan and Rocio in Ribera de Bosque. Ivan and Rocio are very caring and loving people. They make  good team, and the church loves them.

Ivan recently completed a two year incubator training for church planters. He is hungry to learn, and I see him implementing the things he is learning.

What a high privilege it is for Dawn and me to partner with such quality men and women. Both of these couples have a deep and growing love for Christ. We feel blessed to call them friends.

These churches are still at the beginning of their journey. The will go on to touch many more lives, and to shine the light of Christ ever so brightly in the communities that they serve in! Hallelujah!

Thanks for all your prayers and support that has helped make these ministries possible.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org