Monday, May 15, 2017

Zaragoza Family Update

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As you may recall, last October a team of five Godly men, composed of Pastor Kirk Hanger (the founding pastor of our church here in Mexico), Pastor Ruben Bonilla (our current pastor), Pastor Dave Claassen, Elder Dan Claassen and Elder Adrian Tovar, formed an intervention team that confronted Victor Zaragoza with unrepentant sin present in his life and encouraged him to spend a time of restoration in the United States, under the leadership of Pastor Kirk and his wife, Marilyn, while working with a Christian therapist. 

Victor’s visa allowed him to stay a maximum of six months, which has now expired.  Therefore, he returned to Mexico on Monday, April 24th, where the restoration process continues.

As a part of this process, Victor is not living at the Ranch, but rather with his parents, while maintaining communication and visitation with the children.  He will also not be attending our same church.

As far as the crusade ministry, according to the decision of the Fishers of Men Board of Directors and the intervention team, Victor has agreed to not be in charge of nor participate in the crusades.  Adrian Tovar will continue to lead that portion of the ministry.

So, Julie Zaragoza, under the leadership of the Fishers of Men Board of Directors, now holds the position of General Director of Fishers of Men Ministries, Inc., which includes both Refuge Ranch and the Evangelistic Medical Mission Crusades, with Adrian Tovar serving as the Crusade Coordinator.

We thank the Lord that in these last 6 months, both ministries of Fishers of Men have continued to fulfill God’s plans and purposes!  At Refuge Ranch, the construction of the new main house continues to move forward!  In the last 6 months, we have poured over 60 columns and the entire first floor and are now working on all of the first floor headers!  Of course, the focus of Refuge Ranch is not on building a house, but the lives of our children.  Each of the 13 children at home, and the four children that live elsewhere, continue to grow, not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually!  As for the Evangelistic Medical Mission Crusades, we finished out the 2016 calendar as planned and, by God’s grace so far in 2017, we have held five crusades and a two day volunteer training retreat.

We continue asking for your prayers for our family, for Victor, and for the ministry as we walk through this next stage of life, seeking the Lord’s full restoration in each of our lives, in our family, and His continued grace and power in the ministry!

In Christ,

Julie Zaragoza – Fishers of Men General Director
Bob Siler – Fishers of Men Board President
Don Current II – Fishers of Men Board Treasurer
Ashleigh Weis – Fishers of Men Board Secretary

Jen Yoder – Fishers of Men Board Member

Thursday, February 16, 2017

January Fishers of Men Photo Album

January Fishers of Men
Photo Album
The year started out with a wonderful work team, like nearly every year, from Blooming Glenn Mennonite Church in Pennsylvania.  Fishers of Men Board Member and dear friend of the family, Jen, organizes the team each year and Dave Moyer, with his incredible earth moving equipment, transforms the place!  This team does more in one week than what we could do in 6 months on our own!
The team poured the entire first floor of the main house!

A view of the entire work site.

The entire floor was poured using two hand-fed gas powered mixers.

Bucket after bucket after bucket after bucket...(you get the idea)
of gravel!
Adrian and Joseline
Cement bags, cement bags and more cement bags!
Our Fidel, Leo and Joseline with Beth, one of the team leaders
Leveling the cement
The view of the new house with the floor partially poured and
the excavating equipment working on the drain system.
David and Dave...a blessing each January with his giant earth moving equipment!

Hammering away!  If there is something we've got at the's rock!
And then to move the dirt and rocks!
Working on the drain system.
The relationships developed, around a gravel pile or a card game,
are what makes these times so rich!

Jen, work team leader, Fishers of Men Board Member,
and dearly beloved friend of our family, with our eldest, Angie

Our son, Miguel, with Josh...friends are the best!

Carolina having fun with Josh!

Jen always lovingly purchases flowers for Danny's grave
and accompanies us there to remember.

 On January 21, Fishers of Men held the first Evangelistic Medical Mission Crusade of the year, a local one day crusade at our church, Peace Christian Church.  During the day of work, 213 attentions were given and 22 individuals prayed to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.

The crusade team

Adrian, our crusade coordinator, leading morning devotions.
Vero leading worship during devotions with Joel and our son, Leo.

The registration area.

General Medicine
Cleaning dental instruments
Massage therapy
Our daughter, Ana, sorting medicine.
Hair cuts with evangelism
An aerial view of the sanctuary doubling as the crusade site.
I, Julie, had the privilege of working in children's ministry.
These kids LOVED playing with the flannel board after we were done with the lesson.
Working the puppets.

Handing out Operation Christmas Child Boxes from Samaritan's Purse

Then, on January 28th, we had the enormous joy and privilege of celebrating the 15th birthday of our daughter, Joseline.  While she has chosen to take a trip with me as her gift, which we will go on later this spring, we had a special gathering of friends and family at the Ranch to celebrate her life on her birthday!  And quite the celebration it was!  Thank you, Jesus!

Joseline and Adrian

The worship service 

Our beautiful daughter, Joseline

Vero sharing a wonderful message from God's Word!

The fifteenth birthday celebration at Refuge Ranch.

The most important people in Joseline's life praying a blessing over here:
Myself (Julie);  Mireya (her teacher) and her husband, Jorge; Pastor Ruben and Ely;
Vero and Adrian; Isma and Mari (her youth leaders)

My precious, precious daughter!

Leading worship

Joseline and her candy bar

Me and (most) of my kids!

Adrian, Joseline, Isaac and Vero


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

2017...(dot, dot, dot)

2017...(dot, dot, dot)

Those three little dots after a date, or after a phrase, hold so much unknown!  What do they hold for 2017?  How much living, dying, joy, pain, success, failure, tears and laughter are hidden in those three little ink spots?

We may not know what those ink spots hold for this coming year, but we can know who holds each of the more than 31 million upcoming seconds contained in the dates whose commas will be followed by 2017.

"But I trust in you, Lord;
I say, "You are my God."
My times are in your hands."  
Psalm 31:14-15a

The anticipation that comes with following Christ can nearly take your breath away!  Not knowing what the future holds, yet having the privilege of personally knowing the One for whom the future has already passed, creates a security beyond human comprehension and provides the freedom to move fully into a future fully safe in His hands!

Those of us entrusted with the leadership of Fishers of Men Ministries feel this sense of anticipation as we begin to get glimpses of what the Lord may desire to do in this year!  In upcoming blogs, I will share more about His moving here at Refuge Ranch, but today I want to share with you what we trust the Lord has prepared for the Evangelistic Medical Mission Crusades!

2017 Evangelistic Medical Mission Crusade Calendar
(Local one or two day crusades are written in normal font; while bold font represents full length crusades.)

January 21

Iglesia Cristiana de Paz, 
Ixtapaluca, State of Mexico

1 & 2
3 & 4

EMMC Inventory
EMMC Conference

February 13 - 20

Comala & Remudadero, Colima

March 4

Chalco, State of Mexico

March 15 -18

Chilpancingo, Guerrero

April 1& 2

El Triunfo, Mexico City

April 10 -15

Durango, Durango

May 8- 12

Teziutlan, Puebla

June 12 - 19

Oaxaca & Puebla

12 & 13
14 & 15

EMMC Inventory
EMMC Conference


Jalapa de Diaz, Oaxaca

September 4 - 10

Uruapan & Lombardía, Michoacán

October 3 - 12

Los Mochis**

November 6 - 10


November 18

Xola, Mexico City
December 4 - 8

Cuautla, Texcala, Morelos

"Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness." Matthew 9:35

The Evangelistic Medical Mission Crusade (EMMC) teams seek to emulate this verse as they take the good news of the kingdom to the towns and villages mentioned above, working through the local church and healing as many diseases and sicknesses as the Lord empowers them to heal!

Thank you for praying for each of these crusades: for the volunteers, their safety, the provision for all of the earthly resources required to carry out a crusade (anywhere from $1500 to $2500 for a weeklong crusade during which hundreds of individuals receive free personal care and attention), the local churches that host each of the crusades, and, most importantly, for each and every individual that will receive free medical care and have the opportunity to believe in Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior and find true and eternal healing from the greatest illness of all....sin!

We especially covet your prayers for Adrian and Vero Tovar and their son, Isaac, as they lead the Evangelistic Medical Mission Crusade ministry!

So, let's get on with the dot, dot, dot and see what God has in store for 2017!