Hello, and thank you for taking the time to listen to this short message. We believe that God is going to
move in great ways over the coming months amongst the families that we work with in LightShine.
At this point in time there are no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Chihuahua, but there are suspected
cases. It appears that in Chihuahua we’re a few weeks behind the curve of virus spread as compared to
parts of the Unites States. The Mexican government has issued non-binding suggestions that schools
and public meetings be cancelled. The great majority of schools and churches are in fact suspending all
activities for at least a month. The leadership of LightShine has thought and prayed much about our
response. We’ve had no peace in continuing LightShine like normal due to the recommendations of the
health experts. At the same time we’ve had no peace in simply shutting our doors and abandoning the
families we work with at what could potentially be their time of greatest need. We don’t know if in the
highly impoverished Tarahumara colonias that we work in this is going to be a blip on the radar or
something very, very serious. However, I believe that it’s appropriate for us to prepare for moderate
severity, which we hope and pray won’t come to pass.
LightShine is not a program that just gives classes and hosts a meal. We are built on the love of Christ
being expressed through loving individual relationships and discipleship. Our vision is for Tarahumara
children to be Born Again to a Living Hope, intensively discipled during adolescence, and to grow into
adults that are radical Christians who take the love of Christ to their own nation. Each teacher is like a
mother or a father to the kids in her classroom, and often even to the families in her classroom. Each
Director takes care of people in the Tarahumara colonias like a pastor. This is appropriate, because we
are family in Christ. We are the Body of Christ. God has given us the responsibility of loving and caring
for each child in LightShine like our own children, within the limits of our time and capability. In times of
crisis, whether individual of worldwide, we don’t shut our doors. Rather, we dive into that opportunity
Therefore, today, we are having our final social-emotional class in which we will train the kids in the
precautions that they must take during at least the next month in their homes and communities. Then,
beginning this Monday, the staff of LightShine will be converted into a small army of caretakers for the
Tarahumara that we minister to.
- All classes and corporate gatherings will be cancelled.
- The kitchen staff and volunteers will continue to meet, and will prepare meals. They will take
extreme precautions during their food preparation. Also, even though it’s expensive, the
portion sizes will be doubled.
- Teachers and directors will be taking the meals to each family individually. The teachers will be
wearing gloves and masks, antibacterial gel, and spray bottles of disinfectant. They will practice
social distancing, and will not enter the family’s houses or touch surfaces. After each house-visit
they will wipe their gloves with antibacterial gel and if necessary, spray down with disinfectant.
- But at each house they will talk with the family and pray for them. They will check on
the health of each person in the household. We will meet needs, both physical and
- The Tarahumara are a marginalized people group, they are intimidated and
oftentimes don’t know how to navigate the health system even though they can
receive financial assistance for medical help.
- If we become aware of severely developing respiratory symptoms, the
leadership of LightShine will be responsible for taking them to local hospitals or
the red cross, being by their side, and helping them to navigate the system.
- Directors will be in frequent communication with the Tarahumara governors in their colonias to
understand any developing situations.
- We will continue this scheme until it makes sense to switch back to the normal LightShine
- During the regularly scheduled Easter break in LightShine, all staff will be on call. We will be
regularly checking in with the families in our classrooms and with the Tarahumara governors of
our colonias by phone. If there are medical emergencies, we will be ready to step in.
This is a time when once again, the Tarahumaras will see that we don’t just love in words but also in
Please pray that God will use this time in the Tarahumara colonias. Pray that there will be a powerful
move of the Holy Spirit. Also, please pray for us – especially the teachers, directors, missionaries and
pastors in LightShine, as they will be the soldiers in the front line bearing the burdens of those that we
Chris Nickerson, Director of LightShine.