Early April Regional Update
Tri-Cities Men’s Center
Meet Our Staff: Aaron Waddell – Outreach Coordinator
“My name is Aaron. I am 36 years old and am proud to say that I have been a part of Adult and Teen Challenge since 2012. I’m originally from Bend, OR, which is where my Teen Challenge experience started as a student.
I have experienced much in my life since the day that I walked into the Central Oregon Campus and throughout this time God has made himself known to me in a way, I never knew possible. I have learned what it means to be a father, son, friend and a future husband. I graduated as a student from the program, served as an intern with the Teen Challenge Ministry Institute for one year and operated as the Intake Coordinator, Kitchen Manager, Maintenance Manager and Vocational Training Coordinator, at different times at the Central Oregon & Portland Campuses. While serving in those capacities, I have met men that have changed my life, pushed me to grow and encouraged me along this path. There is no greater purpose for me than to serve each person that comes into our ministry, from students to volunteers.
A few months back I began praying and over those months God led me here to Tri-Cities, where my 9-year-old son, Henry, and his mother live. I have some pretty amazing testimonies over the years of how God is so faithful and has shown up for me time and time again. The greatest of these is definitely the Lord preparing the way for me to be the father to my son here and be a part of his life every day while serving in ministry. How great is our God? To know exactly what, when and where we need to be and to continuously blow our dreams out of the water!
I am excited for the opportunity to serve here at the Tri-Cities Campus as the Outreach Coordinator and love on these men. Thank you all for welcoming me and I look forward to walking with you, serving with you and sharing the love and comfort God has shown me in many times of great need!”
Central Oregon Men’s Center
Two hundred people were at our third annual Ladies Luncheon event. Our keynote speaker Heather Nashelle Collard, the founder of Nashelle jewelry, did a great job telling her story and bringing hope. There was nice music with a women’s quartet, dessert sweets from the local bakery Too Sweet Cakes, a mother-son student testimony of restoration, and support with Donor Services Coordinator Toni Crary sharing about our student sponsorship program. It was a joy to see so many women coming together to put hope within reach!
Willamette Valley Men’s Center
March 4th was the Willamette Valley Men’s Center Itineration at Crowfoot Baptist in Lebanon. This is a small church that we have been to previously and had been welcomed back this year. The center’s outreach team was all new, including a new Outreach Leader, and with the exception of one senior student had never done an Itineration before. On top of a fresh crew, we had switched up our format and were incorporating the Stay Sharp panel into our service, along with a student testimony, and cardboard testimonies from the whole team. Everyone was nervous, however, everything went off without a hitch. God honored our faithfulness and we were able to make an impact on the church body. We were blessed with a $1,200 donation from the church as well as new sponsors from a congregation of 79 people.
Tri Cities Jail Outreach
“Our jails are filled with women whose crimes are related to opioid, meth and alcohol addiction. Pray with us as our team of Kathy, Gloria, Luisa, Kim, Joana, Linda and Sylvia share tools for recovery using Teen Challenge concepts, one woman at a time.”
Seattle Men’s Center
We are so happy and excited to share with you a very inspirational event and a wonderful story. One of our graduates returned this month from a missions trip to Nepal. Upon completion of our program, Ryan embarked on a mission’s trip with Youth With A Mission (YWAM).
This is his story:
God rescued me from a terrible life of drug addiction and crime. He brought me out of the darkness and into the living light of Jesus Christ.
God has now set me on a path of learning who He is and who I am. First through one year of Teen Challenge, and then through a Y-WAM D.T.S (Discipleship Training School) In beautiful Nepal.
The DTS was very challenging for me; I won’t lie and say it was just a pretty vacation. When I arrived at the school in Nepal, I didn’t know what to expect.
I was full of fear and definitely intimidated by all the young and loud prayer warriors, and I didn’t feel like I fit in. But the level of love that I was greeted with I had never experienced before.
God was moving in all the people there and I had no choice but to join in and hang on for the ride.
I began to crawl out of my isolation shell and interact with everyone there, learning and praying and worshipping. It was amazing.
God taught me to listen to His voice through two-way journaling, writing letters to Jesus and then listening in the spirit to His quiet still voice. I learned that God is always speaking to me and I just need to tune into Him.
God also taught me to be able to interact with others and to live in harmony with others. This was no easy task, seeing how I had lived on my own for so long doing whatever I wanted.
Through living with others I learned how to give love, yes, but also to receive love, which was seemingly harder. Praise God!