Some may question what the world of Information Technology (IT) has to do with the global mission field. As you may or may not have guessed, computers, internet, routers, and all things tech, help One Challenge global workers be efficient and productive in ministry; enabling them to reach people beyond their immediate scope.
Tech Upgrade – Meeting the Need
Sepal Guatemala (the sending base in the country with the OC Global Alliance) recently received a digital upgrade. New software and computer systems, along with a server enabling file sharing, and new audio/visual equipment were some of the essential changes.
“Sepal (Guatemala) is also looking into recording Bible teachings that can be put on their website with these new audio/visual components. These teachings can then be downloaded throughout the country by pastors and leaders,” says Doug Reimer, a One Challenge partner, and the father of Hilde, a OC/Sepal mission worker.
Doug, Leni, and co-laborer Dave traveled to Guatemala in October to install and teach the new systems. Praising the Lord for the safety in travel, and all the expensive equipment arriving, Doug and Dave got to work upgrading the Sepal office.
“As with all projects, there are the knowns and unknowns. In this project, there were more unknowns than the certainties,” Doug says. “We met with Hector, the director, and got a good feel for expectations and received needed answers and directions.”
Setting up the wireless network proved to be a key step for the men. “It was not without significant challenges, the biggest was getting the telephone company to make changes,” Doug says. “Thankfully, it was achieved remotely, which saved significant time.”
Installing new items in developing nations comes with complications – expected and unexpected. Mainly, it means budget more time than you think you’ll need.
After a busy week of installation, they completed the main objective. Doug says: “All the computers have Office 365, virus protection, and their shared files mounted. Dave did a great job getting the file server (Windows 2016) up and configured. The server backups are configured, all personnel have their individual folder configured, and the common file is configured. We have created a finance folder for the accounting software.”
Training for the New Tech
Of course, installation is just the first step. The men spent hours training the Sepal team with the new tech. “Mayra, the secretary loves her new, big screen, and her computer is fully configured and is being used daily,” Doug says. “The treasurer computer is also fully configured, and a short familiarization has been done.”
Hector Pivaral expresses the thankfulness of the Sepal Guatemala team: “With the new technology, we are able to bring better information to our people and others who request it. It opens up the opportunity to develop research projects with large sets of data, which was impossible with our old computers. Communication has also improved, and we are able to provide better accountability.”
After the project was complete, the team demonstrated its thankfulness toward Doug and Dave, celebrating a job well done with a “thank you” gift and tasty lunch.
Pray for Sepal Guatemala
- Pray the new tech systems will help the team expand their ministry.
- Pray many will be reached through the Bible translations.
- Pray for blessing on the Reimer family and their willingness to serve where and how God has called.