Zac and Julie Stutler

Prayer Letter/Ministry Update

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In addition to amazing beaches and tropical palm trees, the Dominican Republic also has some majestic mountains and beautiful rivers. This is especially true in the provincial town of Jarabacoa located in the center of the island about 4 ½ hours from Punta Cana. Last weekend Alianza Matrimonios Asombrosos (Allianza Awesome Marriages) held its third marriage retreat next to a picturesque flowing river in this quaint mountain town. The theme of the Retreat was very appropriate – “River of Love.” Just as the beautiful river flowed through the property of the hotel where we had the retreat, love flowed throughout the weekend in so many different ways.

Fifteen couples enjoyed an amazing weekend filled with activities and special moments in the River of Love. There were times of laughter and fun. There was also much time for loving communication and romance including a renewal of vows beside a bonfire Saturday night. Practical Biblical messages were a central part of the weekend. The couples were challenged to navigate the waters of the “river of love” together with Christ as the center of their relationships. They were challenged to build their marriages next to the river of Christ´s love so that their families could be strong and healthy like the tree mentioned in Psalm 1. At one point in the final service the atmosphere was so beautiful, and the presence of the Lord was so real that no one wanted it to end.

God worked in so many ways. The majority of the couples were from Alianza seeking to strengthen their marriages. There were also some who do not attend our church. One of these men as he left expressed to our leadership team his deep appreciation for the weekend. His wife told us that he was really impacted and told her that he wants to begin attending Alianza.

One couple who are new to the church compared their marriage to the river flowing through the hotel property. The husband shared that when they arrived he felt like his life was like the part of the river filled with rocks where the water was turbulent but now after spending a weekend in the “River of Love” he can look out at the other side of the river where the water is flowing peacefully down steam.

The weekend was extra special for us in many ways. As you know, we will soon be finishing our ministry in the Dominican Republic. The Marriage Ministry in Alianza has been a dream come true for us. It has been such a joy over the last four years to work with many couples both in the church and the community to help strengthen their relationships as they head toward the goal of having awesome marriages and families in Christ. It hasn’t always been easy, but it is awesome to see God at work in marriages. This retreat was our last big marriage event in the Dominican Republic. We had the privilege of being the speakers which along with leading the retreat was a challenge, but more than that, it was a great opportunity to share our hearts with couples who are so dear to us and to build into their lives in a special way.

It was also an intensive on the job training for our awesome new AMA leadership team. These couples worked so hard and with so much love for about three months leading up to the retreat and worked nonstop during the weekend of the Retreat. It was an amazing blessing to see them grow and develop as leaders. Watching them lead most of the activities during the weekend and minister to the couples in different ways brought such joy to our hearts. We are confident that God will help them lead this important ministry well in the future.

As the couples were leaving the mountain top experience and returning to the day to day reality of life, we encouraged them to always remember what God had taught them in the River of Love that weekend. Please pray that God will bring much fruit in these lives and that these marriages would always be like a tree planted by a river flourishing and producing fruit for eternity. Pray also for our AMA team as they take over this ministry on their own. Pray that they would continue to grow and develop as leaders and that God would use them to impact many families in the future.
This awesome weekend was possible because you prayed and give to the Great Commission Fund and our Work Special Funds. You are very much a part of each and every blessing. Thank you for being such a special part of the team.

We now have a little less than 2 months left in the Dominican Republic. We appreciate your prayers as we conclude our 30 plus years here. There are lots of details to take care of over the next few weeks (packing, selling, sorting, giving things away, turning over ministries, etc. and most importantly spending time with church family and dear friends.). We want to finish well and be a blessing to the people around us who are part of our heart. Saying “goodbye” will not be easy but we know that we are doing what God has called us to do as we prepare to take the love of Christ to the people of Guadalajara, Mexico in 2020. We so appreciate your prayer and faithful support. You are such a blessing.

To see a video of the weekend go to
https://vimeo.com/337190331

Living the Call Together
Zac and Julie Stutler

International Workers with The Alliance serving in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Please visit out website for photos and videos
www.zacandjuliestutler.wordpress.com

Prayer Requests

Prayer Request for Zac and Julie Stutler
Ministry
• Pray that we would always walk closely with Jesus and that God would make our agenda each moment. Pray that God would be glorified in our lives and shine through us every day.
• Pray for the different counseling opportunities that the Lord is giving us lately. Pray that the Lord would give us wisdom and use us in the lives of the people involved.
• Pray for the AliTeens leaders that God would continue to lead and direct them and that many teens would come to know and follow Jesus. Julie is in a role as mentor to the two youth leaders. Pray that God would use her to train these two very talented young adults and help them to make disciples of the teens in Punta Cana.
• Pray for the Alianza Kids ministry that God would continue to use this ministry to reach many children and impact their families
• Pray for the need for more space for Sunday morning services.
o Pray for God’s financial provision for expansion of our church facilities.
o Pray for creative ideas of how to solve the space problem that we presently have since any construction will take time.
• Pray for the Theological Education by Extension program. Pray that God would continue to work in great ways through those leading the classes and those studying in TEE. Pray that God would use this program to develop leaders in Alianza.
• Pray for the small groups.
o That these would be outreaches into their communities.
o That God would raise up local leaders for these groups.
o That these groups would multiply and that there would be many new groups in the future.
• • Pray that we can continue to reach out to our friends and neighbors.
• Pray that we would fin
Family
• Pray that God would bless and care for our children and grandchildren in the US. Pray also that we would be able to continue developing strong relationships with the grandkids (Lincoln and Reagan) via Skype.
Pray for Ana and Steve as they are expecting their first baby in July.

Dominican Republic

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Updated: May 19, 2019

Children's Names
Luke
Ana
Status
Field Assignment
Country of Service
Dominican Republic
Address
Apartado 2683
Santo Domingo,
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

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