FAQ

Don’t you receive a Salary/Benefits from Living Hope International?

No, we do not receive either. Salary: We are self-supporting Missionaries. That means that we are responsible to raise our own support to serve LHI. We do this by asking churches and individuals to commit to support us financially on a monthly or one-time basis.  Benefits:  We are not “employees” of LHI, therefore do not have a matching 401k plan or Medical Insurance plan through LHI.  We are self-employed, independent contractors of Living Hope International, as defined by the IRS. We file our taxes yearly similar to that of a “small business” and are responsible to raise funds to cover retirement,  savings, medical insurance, and taxes.

 

What about the 10% Tithe/ LHI Administration?

Living Hope International is a missions sending agency.  Being a part of Living Hope International enables our financial partners to receive year-end tax deductible receipts for their donations, since Living Hope International is a 501c3 non-profit organization.  The administration fee is standard across most missions agencies, but we consider this more of a tithe to a ministry that we love and support.

 

What is your immigration status in Mexico?

For the first several years, we had “Missionary” visas, which were renewed every year. However, Mexico recently changed their immigration laws, which required us to become change our status from “Missionary” to “Permanent Resident.”  With this change, there will be no yearly renewal or changes.  This does NOT change our US citizenship.  Keziah, having been born in Mexico, is actually a dual citizen; she is a Mexican National and a US Citizen, and does not require any visa.

 

Isn’t everything cheaper in Mexico?

In some areas, maybe, but Puebla is the 4th largest Metropolis in Mexico, and is continuing to grow. As a state, Puebla has the highest cost of living in Mexico.  Almost all living expenses, including food, clothing, gas, electricity etc..are about the same or even slightly higher than in the US (depending on where you are).  The only thing that is less expensive is renting a house which is about 1/3 the cost compared to the US.  The saving in housing helps offset some expenses such as schooling for our children and traveling expenses that we incur as missionaries.

 

How long are you planning on staying in Mexico?

We would hope that we can stay “Long-Term”(15-20 years). We would like to see the entire “Living Hope Community” finished.  In order for this to be a reality for our family, we need to maintain our budgeted level of financial support every year.

 

Is it safe where you are?

Although there are no certainties anywhere in the world, we are in a “safer” area in Mexico.  Puebla is about 800 miles from the Texas border and also several hours from the coast, where more of the issues have been arising over the past couple of years.  As foreigners, we do take precautions,  and are continually aware of our surroundings. However, as a veteran missionary once told us, “The safest place to be is in God’s Will” and that is what gives us  peace and comfort in unsettled times.

 

What is the weather like?

Being at 7,000 feet above sea level, the weather is quite mild most of the year.  There is a rainy season from about May to October, which brings daily rains typically later in the afternoon.  We have a couple “warm” months from February to April where it is sunny and in the low-mid 80’s.   We also have a couple “cold” months (December and January) where it can get down to the 30’s in the mornings and evening, and just reach low-mid 60’s during the day.  With no heat in a concrete house, these months can be the difficult to stay warm.

 

Can I mail a care package to you in Mexico?

If you would like to bless us with a care package, please mail it to our US address provided under “Contact Us.”  We regularly coordinate with visitors and short-term mission teams to have our US mail and other small needs brought to us here in Mexico in airline baggage.

Please do NOT send any packages to us in Mexico regular USPS.  Mexico’s national mail system is not reliable, and many times if a package does make it to us, it will have been opened and we will be charged taxes on the items sent. Most likely it would not arrive at all.

What about Fedex/DHL/UPS?  Although these services are reliable, a full declaration has to be made of the contents and taxes paid upon shipping, plus shipping is quite costly.  Some items are not permitted to be mailed without special permits.

 

Are you all fluent in Spanish?

We have always found “fluent” as a little strong, but consider ourselves extremely proficient in Spanish.  We can understand and speak in conversations and in most settings.  However, we are always learning and growing.  Our children also are able to understand most spoken Spanish, and can communicate well, but each at their own level.  It isn’t something that we work on too much, but most has been picked up through some study, immersion and necessity.

 


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Where is Puebla?