Apr 2021 – Newsletter

Supreme Offering

Our ministry area lawn and playing field have never looked better, it is thick, lush green and beautiful,,,,,,also lonely and sad. Weekly maintenance includes hours of trimming, mowing and watering when no kids have come for over a year to run, play and roll on it seems a waste. We keep it up as a poured out  ‘drink offering’ to the Lord. Numbers 15:5.Likewise, one Saturday evening Inez came to the gate with a big bouquet of flowers as an offering for the Lord’s Sunday table. It was odd since we were still not meeting for worship due to pandemic but I put them on the table in the empty tempel. JUST FOR JESUS she said. Once again ‘as a poured out drink offering’ just as Paul taught in Philippians 2:17-18. May each of us continue to honor God and rejoice together in sacrificial service,,,,JUST FOR JESUS!

“Aquí, no más”

This is a phrase we have heard all over Ecuador since day 1. It always puzzled and frustrated me since it was the answer when I asked ‘how are you?’ “Aquí, no más” means “just here” which is not the answer to the common greeting of ‘how are you? not ‘where are you?’. I never understood UNTIL last year which has spilled into this year. I now understand and feel ‘aquí, no más’,,,,,,,,I wish I never understood as I am sure many of you also know this strange new form of being. Let us share a few photos from this place God has gifted us with comparing ‘how we feel’ with ‘what we believe’ during this challenging time of life and ministry. Thank you for all the support to hold us up and stand with us, we love you.

Out of Our Sight

Difficult, challenging, hard, heart-breaking, unbelievable, limiting, sad, loss and lonely are just a few ways to describe this season we are presently wading through in a country which has gone back to third world status. It’s gonna be okay, WE are gonna be okay. “For if God is for us, who can stand against us.” We also see great opportunity for the gospel and find ourselves in more serious intercession for the world, near and far. One constant prayer(and hope) is that our kids and youth, all who have set foot at Door of Hope will  grow as Jesus did in Lk 2:40 ” continued to grow and to become strong, increasing in wisdom; and the favor of God was upon Him“..also as in Eph. 4:15 “..let us grow in every way into Him who is the head – Christ“. , 2P 3:18 “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”. Thank you all for joining us to hold them up in prayer as they grow up out of our sight and arms but never out of God’s reach.

We are still here

Ministry has taken on a new look here at the Door of Hope since our return in September. We have struggled trying to do what we want to do and what we can do. So what we have been able to do is get caught up on a lot of things that had been on the ‘some day we would like to do list’.

We had started in person worship services in October but that was suspended when we needed to return to the US for a family emergency. We restarted the in person worship in January but just before Easter the goverment here declared another health emergency for an increase in COVID-19 cases. So we are back to virtual worship services again.

We built a irrigation reservoir that holds enough water to keep everything green. Also dug a new well that keeps the reservoir full with an abundance of water.

New block walls around the property for increased security, safety and dust control.

Maintenance on the playground. In the process to replace rotted posts and repainting the wood structure.

Trimming trees that have gotten so tall that we cannot reach the avocados to harvest, several that needed to be pruned for their health and removal of a few old almost dead trees.

We will soon tile the patio ministry area. The main reason for this is to be ready when we can meet again with tile that can be cleaned and sanitized better than concrete.

Installed security cameras for safety and security.

We have continued the weekly maintenance of the grounds as well as weeding and maintaining the flower and vegetable gardens.

We have even had time to build and install the upper kitchen cabinets in our house. It has only taken ten years since we moved in.

In some ways all of this seems to be work in vain as we cannot have folks here to enjoy it. But we have looked at it as this is for God and His glory. Someday in the near future we will be back to receiving folks and they will be able to experience this place and feel the presence of God through His creation.
It is hard to express our gratitude to your faithfulness in partnering with us in ministry. We are so grateful for your continued support and prayers. We would love to hear from you so if you have the time send us a message or email. We realize these are hard times for all but we know that our hope is not in the material things but in our Lord and savior Jesus Christ our living hope.

Dec 2020 – Newsletter

Christmas greetings from the Door of Hope. 

We want to say thank you for your faithfulness and partnership in ministry. This year has been like no other to say the least. We started this year with so many plans as to what we would be doing in ministry only to discover that all those plans would be changed. The vision of what ministry would look like this year has taken a radical change after experiencing the great loss of Erick’s passing with deep impact on so many as well as the worldwide, local and personal effects of the pandemic. What future ministry at The Door of Hope will look like is unknown at this point and to be honest with you, all this is a little unsettling for us. We are certain that God is not finished in this place but how we fit into what He is doing here is still unknown. We are praying and interceding for all those touched by Door of Hope because what God has started, He will not abandon.

We returned home after spending seven months in the US to find that what we knew has changed to the unknown. It was like coming home and finding so much is now unfamiliar. It is almost like starting from where we were 15 years ago. We are still trying to figure out what it is God is doing and how we can join Him in this process to transform lives with His eternal hope.

I (Tim) have been studying the Christmas story recently for the messages for December. I discovered that Joseph and Mary had many plans for their lives as they prepared themselves for their marriage. Just as all young couples dream and wonder what the future holds, they were no different. But in a flash their lives were turned upside down, each of them having an encounter with the angel Gabriel. They must have been surprised and a bit confused at the situation they found themselves in. Here they are not even married and yet Mary was pregnant and in their culture the shame and embarrassment that came with this situation. Yet I am sure no matter how hard they tried to explain that God had chosen them, no one understood them. It was something that only a few of God’s chosen at the time could fully comprehend. Every time that Gabriel appeared, one of the first things he said was “do not be afraid”. So many times in our lives we find things changing and one of the first things we do is become afraid. Afraid of the unknown, the where and the how. I think that fear is a common reaction. But for the believer it should be clear that fear does not come from God, it is just not in His nature. The only place fear comes from is the enemy. Over 25 years ago Daina and I knelt at the alter and told God that we were His to send us wherever He wanted and to do whatever he wanted. That hasn’t changed so we step into this New Year with our hopes and dreams in the hands of the ONE who holds it all in His hands.

    “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”        Hebrews 10:23

May all your hopes and dreams for this next year be in His hands as well. As the angel Gabriel told Jospeh and Mary “Do Not Be Afraid”. God is in control, He always has been and He always will be. He is doing something and wants us all to join Him, of that I am sure. May God bless you and keep you in the hollow of His hand.

A very merry CHRISTmas to you followed by a CHRIST filled 2021

Tim and Daina Datwyler

Nov 2020 – Newsletter

Thankfulness in the midst of uncertainty 

Thanksgiving greetings to all our family and friends. At the writing of this greeting I am reminded that about this time last year we all began to hear of this virus that was developing in a distant land far away. I don’t think any of us believed that it would become a pandemic. With that in mind it has changed our whole manner of life. I was thinking this morning of what would be my description of what being thankful looks like this year. Many of you I know have had a really difficult year. But in spite of how bad this year may have been God is still God and that alone is enough for us to give Him thanks. 

Many people have asked if Thanksgiving Day is celebrated in Ecuador. The short answer is no. Few countries in the world set aside a day to give God thanks for what he has done. I was reminded the other day that the celebration of Thanksgiving Day is a holiday that originated in United States at a time of great strife and troubled times. The president at the time was Abraham Lincoln and he made the following proclamation. 

Proclamation of Thanksgiving

“The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the

blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added. . .No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens, And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony , tranquility and Union.”

President Abraham Lincoln

Daina and I have so much to be thankful for. In March when we could not return to Ecuador we really did not know what to do but God had a plan. In the midst of this our worship leader, friend and youth leader Erick succumbed to colorectal cancer. He went home to be with the Lord while we were in the US. We couldn’t even be with him to say goodbye. We were devastated because this was not how we thought things would go.  But God was still in control as He always is. We had the generous gift from a great member of our support team loan us a car for as long as we needed it. A now new members of our support team loaned us their basement apartment for as long as we needed. God has always provided for us and has never failed us. 

Later in August Kevin came down with COVID-19. He, Esther and James all contracted the virus but Kevin had it so bad he had to be hospitalized. Fortunately because even in the middle of this God still had a plan and was in control as He always is. Kevin spent 5 days in the hospital and 3 of those days in critical condition. Because of prayer partners like each of you and many others around the world God heard those prayers and Kevin, Esther and James all recovered. Daina and I have not contracted COVID-19 and we give thanks to God for that. We have done a lot of traveling this year and God continues to keep us healthy. All praise and thanks to God. 

As Daina and I returned home to Ecuador we encountered a very different place than we left. Schools as they are in many places are not meeting in person. So we don’t see very many children on the streets. Many business have closed due to the lack of business. We started meeting in person for worship services but very few are coming for two reasons. Having our doors closed for seven months didn’t help and folks became accustomed to watch a message online instead of in person. The other is there is still the fear that someone could get the virus at a gathering. Both semi valid reasons but it is very disheartening to know where we were as a ministry and church and to be almost at ground zero.But praise and thanks to God that He is willing to start a new the ministry at Door of Hope again.

Being confident this very thing, that He who begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.   Philippians 1:6   

For the first time in our married life Daina and I are not spending Thanksgiving together. Daina is in Ecuador and I am in Reno, NV. I flew back a week ago to help my in laws. My father in law is in the hospital battling with the side effects of chemotherapy. He is fighting his second battle with lung cancer. The first was managed with a laser surgery but this time the required treatment was chemotherapy. Anyway I came back to help them as he tries to transition to home care. He is still in the hospital but should be transferring to a VA rehabilitation center where he will receive the occupational therapy he needs to come home. All praise and thanks to God for providing the care needed in this situation.

All in all I would have to say this year has been a tough one and for many more it’s been a devastating year. But we live in a fallen world and there is a lot of evil out there. Remember there is always something for us to give thanks to God. Even if we are in want or plenty, even if we are with shelter or without, even if we are sick or healthy. We still need to Give Thanks to God from whom all blessings flow. Thank you all for being so faithful with your giving and your prayers. We thank God for each one of you.

Oh come, let us sing to the Lord! Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before His presence with Thanksgiving. Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms. For the Lord is the great God and the great King above all gods. Psalm 95:1-3

Sep 2020 – Newsletter

First of all Praise God for his work in your life during this crazy time that we, together while apart, experience this novel corona virus pandemic. Thank you for your faithfulness, love and kindness. Thank you for praying Kevin well, he is recovering. THANK YOU just Thank you, each of you and our sweet Jesus. 

As we prepare to return to Ecuador TODAY!!! Sept. 11, we contemplate these 6 months in ‘exile’. Returning should be just like riding a bike so I ask if riding a bike is the same now as when you first learned? I remember riding a simple bike with a banana seat, then I got to ride one with hand brakes. My grandfather even let me ride his folding bike a couple times. Then a 3 speed added to the adventure and fun even though it was bigger than me. I don’t know about you but the first few times I rode a 10 speed it didn’t go smoothly, the gears crunched, my pant leg got stuck in the gears and I almost forgot to look where I was going. Shifting gears is not always an easy thing.

This has been a challenging time all around the globe and we just better get used to it, make adjustments and glorify God through it all. I like the term “shifting gears” because it describes the process we are discovering, it doesn’t always go smoothly but we better pay attention as the wheels keep moving. God is on the move more than ever and it is thrilling and somewhat terrifying as we maneuver the obstacles to lead others to the real PRIZE. Thank you for all you do. 

God has been an amazing provider during these 6 months in ‘exile’. We get to return to a somewhat ‘destabilized’ Ecuador on Sept. 12th.Things and life will not be the same as when we left but we know God goes before us and with us as we search for opportunities to reflect His light. Please continue to pray 

  •  1. Travel and adjustment
  • 2. Those who have held it all together (while apart) at our home. We asked our friends to take care of everything for 8 days and they are still doing it. The Lanchimbas rock!
  • 3. Kellyann and Rodrigo with charge of 3 campuses and new DS duties as they figure out how to school and raise 5 kids 7 month -14yrs.
  • 4. Daina’s parents as they face health issues for Jim with advanced COPD and cancer.
  • 5. Amanda and Eli in MX
  • 6. Kevin who tested positive for covid and then spent 5 days in hospital, pray for Esther and James. Not sure when we will be together again and NOT the farewell we planned. James starts kindergarden and Esther still cannot get driver license with Social security offices on limited services. 
  • 7. Joe and Eulouise W. for inviting us into their life and giving a wonderful place to stay.

May we suggest you go visit a state park near you. We enjoyed many days and miles in north Georgia state parks as we waited out this craziness. Medicine for the weary (and bored) soul.

 Time runs fast as we stand still and we are very, very thankful.
4Hisglory, Daina and Tim

Feb 2020 – Newsletter

Well its been a while since we last communicated with you. We do apologize for this, it just seems that every time we plan to write an update something else comes up. Not a real good excuse but it is what has happened lately. Please accept our humble apology and we will try to do better as the year goes on. Your faithfulness through it all is amazing as Father God must be guiding you even though our failings. Thank you for your gifts and prayers.

This was a sad and liberating day as we celebrated our last Compassion International sponsored gathering with the school age kids. WE LOVE THESE GUYS. We are finally getting adjusted through too many changes to mention. Kids and youth are growing as they come in for a closer look at Jesus and his open invitation to be loved. This has been a difficult and challenging season with financial and personnel shortages. We are making it work with adjustments to budget such as food in place of maintenance and improvements, volunteers no longer receive stipend as well as efforts making and selling various artisan crafts. Our God is faithful and so very kind. THANK YOU all for loving us through it!

While we were still in the US last fall, Ecuador had a civil uprising over the government’s decision to end fuel subsidies. After two weeks of a country wide strike both sides sat down and decided to restore the fuel subsidies which left Ecuador with a terrible loss in revenue and time that will probably never be gained back. 
During this time one of our dearest tutors Erick Guacollantes became very ill and was hospitalized just a few blocks from where most of the protest was going on. By the time we returned, all the civil unrest was over but the evidence remained. We went to visit Erick in the hospital and found out that he had developed cancer. We honestly thought that when we left him after the visit that he didn’t have long to live. We and many of you began to pray and seek God for healing. Our gracious God responded and a couple weeks later Erick was visiting us here at The Door of Hope. He was even with us for Christmas Eve service all the while undergoing chemotherapy. Around the first of the year he began to take a turn again and his kidney function began to decline. He has since been put back on dialysis and is continuing with chemotherapy but the last word from the doctors is that his cancer is very aggressive and that it seemed terminal. We are all trusting in God’s last word. As we continue to pray for Erick’s freedom from cancer, he has his next appointment on March 6th with the doctor in charge of oncology at the hospital. It is very sad for us to see this once vibrant 24 year old suffering and facing this kind of disease. Please continue to pray and lift up Erick(and his family) to our Father, that His will be done and He relieves Erick from this suffering.

Before we went on our mini furlough last September we had signed a lease for the property adjacent to ours. We (the church) began to develop a plan to plant flowers to sell to support ministry in partnership with church members Inez and Carlos. While we were gone the property was broken into and the well and reservior pumps were stolen then recovered the next day. On our return we discovered that the well itself would not produce adequate water so we had to dig a new well and repair the pumps that were stolen. We now have plenty of water and have planted and harvested the first flowers. They started going to market the week of Valentine’s Day. We have Sunflowers, Bells of Ireland and Snapdragons. God has blessed this endeavor and we continue to pray that He is glorified through this ministry.

We are pleased to announce that Kevin ,Esher and James are all together in Columbia, SC as of Feb.5. After a very long process Esher was granted her residence visa to the United States. This is a good thing for them but it meant that we had to say good bye to Esther and James. They were here with us almost every weekend and then some. We have grown very close to them both so needless to say it was hard to see them go. 
We took advantage of a visit Kevin made in January for Esther’s interview at the embassy and had a church service to say farewell before they finally left. We had Esther’s parents church worship with us as well and we had a great time celebrating and blessing them as they started the next step in their journey.
We also want to thank Ashland UMC in Columbia, SC for the way they have blessed our children as they make this transition to being together once again.

We are pleased to announce that we are proud grandparents of our newest grandson Jona Asher Cruz born on 23 January 2020. He was adopted by Rodrigo and Kellyann on 25 January 2020. So this makes grandchild number 6.

If you would like to make a contribution to our support account you can send it to the following Address:
P.O.BOX 936559
Atlanta, GA 31193-6559
Designate gifts “Datwyler Support 5/255/DY”

You may contact us at:
Email: datfam4ecuador@gmail.com
Whatsapp: 593-99-166-3888
Facebook: Puerta de Esperanza
Web Site: Puertadeesperanza.org

May 2018 – Newsletter

From Becky’s Perspective

Becky Stephen serves as the Sr Director of Global Engagement for TMS Global, overseeing TMS’s 190 cross-cultural workers in 34 countries. This month she came to Ecuador to see a little bit of what God is doing here, in and through those of us who are serving in this beautiful country. She wanted to share some of her thoughts with you.

“Speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” Eph 4:15-16

This is my guiding vision: to see people mature in Christ as each one of us does the work God’s created us to do. So I love it when I visit TMS Global workers who are doing just that.

Tim and Daina are serious, hard-working folks who value discipline, preparation and commitment. They have a strong sense of justice that flares at the injustices suffered by so many of the people here. And a deep love that is manifest not only in their affection for the people, but in their patience with the process of making Christ known and willingness to be in this for the long haul in order to see gospel transformation take hold in this community.

Just this morning I met 3 young adults who have been under the spiritual leadership of the Datwyler’s during their teenage years. All 3 are not only following Jesus, but feel called to missions as a result of the Datwyler’s discipling and influence. We shared our mission calling stories and they picked my brain about what I did to prepare when I was their age.

Every child in that room has their own story. And because Tim and Daina responded to God’s call to missions when they were young, they are now part of each 1 of those stories.

What I’ve seen in Tim and Daina and the Eph. 4 work they’re doing makes me proud to be part of the TMS Global community. They are bearing fruit. Not quickly. Not spectacularly. But truly. Just ask any of the kids in this room.

Some ways to pray for Tim & Daina:

1.- Daily they are faced with decisions of how to deal with social ills and evils that impact the people they love and serve. Pray for discernment and wisdom.
2.- As they disciple children, teens, and young adults, ask God to teach them how to pray in order to see spiritual strongholds broken so that these kids can live the new life that Jesus promised.
3.- Workers grow weary over time from the burdens they bear on behalf of others, from the stress of cross-cultural living (even if they love it), from their own personal and family issues, and from the strain of leadership. Pray for a fresh move of the Spirit in their lives and the lives of their whole family.

Kevin in TN

Many of you already know that our son Kevin has moved back to the USA. He looked for work in several areas for months which resulted in realizing he could not provide for his wife and son in Ecuador in its current economic condition. He is working in Chattanooga and seems to be settling in. We have the pleasure, albeit temporary, of still enjoying Esther and James until they can join him by the end of the year. This move has been very hard on all of them but extra traumatic for little James who just turned three and spent most of his time with his dad before he left. He is still adjusting but will not leave Esther’s sight except for short outings with us. Please pray with us that they can be reunited without too much legal difficulty. We miss them already!

Honoring 47 Mothers

The kids were excited and proud as we prepared to love on their moms. Many made a card or a gift, others learned a song and several youth spent a few hours rehearsing a special drama set to some crazy music. Our worship team led us in worship after the kids led us all in song and dance for our Lord’s glory. TOGETHER we played and gathered for a special meal for 139+ happy tummies.

The best part was after the message of how God created moms to love just as He loves each of us. The kids gathered around their mom and prayed over her with passion and tears, we finished the special time with one of our 9 yr olds wrapping it ip with a special heartfelt blessing for each of us moms. Several kids came without their mom so I got BLESSED by them. The moms must have felt blessed because I had never before received so many big bear hugs with a blessing from the moms as they were leaving. We finished the celebration with gifts of candy, chocolates and a fistful of roses.
Thank you for playing a part to impact the families God has surrounded us with.

Dec 2017 – Newsletter

When you wonder

Have you ever wondered if anything is sinking in? I remember as a parent, as a youth leader, Sunday school teacher or small group leader thinking that my words and prayers were just like water flowing through my hands and down the drain as I would listen to my kids or students five minutes after class. As I see now in my three children and many others, I know He was at work the whole time.
These thoughts reveal my lack of faith in Gods work in other lives because I am impatient to see results or some evidence of a heart change. In recent months I have been looking for this evidence in the lives of about 100 people we have ministered to, loved, counseled, taught, visited and worshiped with for years – is it making any difference? I have been asking God to show me.

“Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.” 2Tes 3:16

He has given me glimpses or snapshots of transforming lives.
A boy named Justin got hit by a car and was hospitalized for a week with a compound fracture of his leg. He was in a lot of pain when his mother arrived so he begged her to pray with him and continued for weeks always asking to pray as he recovered and is now back on his feet.2 year old Javier comes early since his mom is our new kitchen helper is a six year old servant who joyfully cleans all the tables before going to play. Luchin fell from the monkey bars and hurt his arm so Sylvano stayed and comforted him until we could get him a ride home.The youth with their notorious blind selfishness are now working in teams to clean up and supervise kids during free time. Erika choose not to take a Saturday class in the university so she can be a student leader here on Saturdays. Maria, Erika and Graciela show up to work around the property a few days per month. Gloria and her kids harvest and sell avocados. As you can see, God is getting them and transforming lives through us, you and me. In my case it proves He can use anyone for His Glory.

Rapid-fire Blessings

We share with you the same joy as Paul writing to the Philippians, “I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:12-13.
We share with humble and thankful hearts the answer and provision of unceasing prayer. In the span of one month all the following was put in our hands. Praise God with us for each blessing as well as those we are still praying for.
Flowing water for dry ground – deepened well and new pump
Wall and fence extension – clearing the long side of the property, funds for workers to pour a four foot high retaining wall with a block wall on top.

fund for the continuation of the retaining wall with chainlink on top to
provide a more permanent safe place for the kids.
3 computers for new computer lab.
Guitar and drum box for worship.
Lawn tractor
A new vehicle – 2013 Suzuki Grand Vitara – No words for those who made this a reality.
Benjamin Jong Cruz – Our newest grandson gets his forever home in Kellyann’s arms after spending his first two years in an orphanage in China.

Two short term teams bless and encourage us (see article).
This list of physical needs being met – God put us on earth with many needs which He longs to provide – Trust us when we say that all of these “ things” translate into more fruitful ministry.

Student leadership

I have been doing some studies in the scriptures of God calling folks to ministry. It came to my surprise that a good majority of the folks that where called by God where under the age of 20. As many of you know for years Daina and I have been discipling and leading our children, youth and adults. It has always been our
prayer that what we have taught and testified would bring fruit in their lives. We have been so blessed by the answer to our prayers in the last couple years.

“Jesus told His disciples to pray for more workers…..”

To start with we have two young ladies that have been with us since the beginning of ministry here in Ecuador. At that time they were just young girls. Erika Lanchimba and Paulina Ayala are both studying in the university. Erika is studying marketing and Paulina is studying civil engineering. We are so proud of them and how God has blessed them so richly. They continue to be part of our leadership team here at The Door of Hope. They do many tasks here from leading worship services, teaching youth, teaching kindergarten age kids and etc…….. We praise God for these leaders He has raised up.

Next we have what God has been doing with our youth. He has brought together a group of teenagers that have a hunger and thirst for His word. They desire to be filled with Gods Spirit and serve Him. Since the beginning of the year consistently we have had 40-45 youth every Saturday. We have covered a lot of difficult subjects that are relevant to their everyday lives. I kinda figured that some may not come back after these talks but they did return and some have even brought friends. At the beginning of this school year we divided them into work groups to help with the children after youth group. They have embraced these simple tasks as their ministry. God is so good.

The biggest advance this year by far is the blessing of our worship team. In September we had our first worship service with our own worship team. It took five years of prayer but it has payed off. They are not perfect by any means but they are doing their best to lead us into the throne room of grace. They are all, I might add, under the age of 18. Student leadership in action. Praise God for His abundant mercy and grace. What a privilege it is to be a part of what He is doing here and being able to see the fruit He is producing.

“Conectado con Dios” “Connected to God”

Our youth group decided that we should have a name. So we held a competition for a name and logo design. We gave the youth a month for those that wanted to compete. We combined the selection of the name and logo with a Wii competition/event.

We had 8 entries that were very well done. Part of the event was that each entry explain the meaning of the logo and the name. After much deliberation we the leaders of the youth group selected the name “Conectados con Dios.” The logo shows two continents North and South America connected through Jesus Christ. It also shows how dependent we are and must maintain this connection with God and one another. We are very proud of Maribel and Nancy Ayala for their hard work and design.

WOW, Just wow!

We finished 2 arduous, exhausting and incredibly blessed weeks. 2 Mission teams in two weeks, we could not have planned it to have such a Big Impact. As we rest and recover from the non-stop, we are counting grace upon grace and basking in Gods love abundantly displayed by those sent here to serve alongside those who received so well. Let me tell you about these two teams sent by two churches from two countries by God’s will and strength to be united with His open arms.

The first to arrive came from our old ministry ground in Monterrey, Mexico, sent by Vina del Rey pastored by fellow TMS missionaries and dear friends Florencio and Maria Guzman. Each of the four young adults and three youth, faced and overcame many obstacles, battles and challenges just to get here with their ready to bless attitudes. They hit the ground running and joyfully maneuvered the packed and ever growing ministry schedule. They taught parents, ministered to our leaders, poured into our fledgling worship team, 3 day VBS with 80 kids, made home visits, loved and guided 40-50 youth through some heavy personal lifestyle issues, helped a little on the wall building, brought and installed the network and extension for WiiFi, bought new speakers and instruments ……. They deeply blessed and impacted all of our lives. Many tears were shed at the good bye celebration. The key to such impact was not just because they spoke Spanish but because they came to serve however, with whatever we needed. Plans did change and challenges were met with prayer and encouragement. We consider it pure joy to be in a covenant relationship with Vina del Rey after working alongside them 15 years ago when these team members were children and youth. Thank You Johnny Guzman for leading, loving, serving and following as well.

The next team was sent by one of our long term supporting churches, faithful to God’s call in the ministry of our family for over 15 years, Ooltewah UMC from TN. This team of five hard working and deeply loving adults rekindled friendships with home visits and has watched Door of Hope kids grow through the years. With sweat they helped build the fence/wall, dug a dry sink for the gray water from the ministry kitchen, built columns for the block wall, painted the ministry bathroom stalls as well as general cleaning. They also helped dig our well deeper to provide much needed water for the ministry area and they brought many tools for carpentry and electrical workshops. We are always, ALWAYS encouraged to have our OUMC family under our roof, Thank you good and faithful servants.

Our newest Grandson Ben with Kellyann

Mar 2017 – Newsletter


Whats in a Box?

In October and November many of you fill a box or 2 or 10+ through Samaritan’s Purse ministry, carefully selecting each item to bless each child who will excitedly open it in March to discover new treasures. Several of

you even track where your box goes. Door of Hope recently had a party which culminated with gifting 160 boxes.

These kids who have so little to call their own now have a box of blessed treasures. How do I know the items are blessed? Because I know the full hearts who filled them and prayed for the children to be blessed. THANK YOU! Not many of you know all that is in each and every box. Besides the soap and washcloth, toothbrush and paste, hair bows, bouncy balls, books, crayons, candy, clothes, toys and stuffed animals come the most important and life giving gifts. Hope, love, a hug from far away, connection with God’s family, prayers, smiles, joy, the emotion of inviting a friend to meet Jesus, sharing the blessing with their mom and dad, a fun party and making new friends are a few of the extra benefits stuffed with each box you send. Each child goes to their humble home with the Good News, a full tummy, full arms and full hearts.

What’s more is they return the following Saturday with more friends to begin the Great Adventure Bible course taught completely by our student leaders for 12 weeks. In June we will finish with a graduation ceremony we will celebrate with their families. Each child will leave with a mind and heart full of new Bible knowledge, a Bible, a diploma and for many new life in Jesus. You now know that the box YOU so thoughtfully filled is so much more than you filled it with. Every box is an excellent investment for the Kingdom. May God be glorified and honored with each offering and sacrifice.


Christmas 2016

December was filled with excitement from clowns and confetti, gifts, candy, games and candles lighting the night. A small work team from Ootelwah UMC, TN helped finish many pending projects for the workshop. We held a Christmas party for our Compassion International school children and had a great time celebrating, eating and making Santa Kabobs. Our Christmas party with our staff was one of the big highlights for us because we got to spend time serving them and just treating them as the valuable servants they are. Our Christmas Eve celebration was pretty big this year with 200+ folks. Children, youth and adults celebrating the birth of our King, closing with a candlelight service. All in all we seemed to be very busy in December having the privilege to serve King Jesus here in Ecuador.


Speak up

“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need”. Hebrews 4:16

As we invest in all the kids God has gifted us with one of our goals is to help them learn to speak, to confidently speak up. Critical thinking is not a forte in the schools so we have to teach them the process. First to listen and think, decide

on opinion then order what to say so they can stand

up and speak up. We found out they are expected to ‘just do it’ in about 10th grade for project presentations. Many are so terrified they fail due to fear. We became aware of this need a few years ago when one of our student leaders shared her experience as an exuberant praise to God.

Nancy excitedly told us how one of her teachers congratulated her for a fine job in her oral presentation. This same teacher found her later to ask her what had happened because 3 months earlier she was frozen with fear and could only say 5 words in front of the class. Nancy was surprised that the change was so drastic so she began to think about what happened to enable her. The conclusion she told her teacher was how she overcame her fear while studying to be a Sunday School teacher at her church, Puerta de Esperanza. Half of the course is to study, make a lesson plan and present each part in front of the other aspiring teachers. 4 presentations in 4 weeks and she was changed without even noticing UNTIL her teacher noticed. This was the beginning of a struggling student becoming a competitive confident young lady.


Now you can see why this is one of our goals in ministry with our kids. We begin with our 3-5 yr olds with a weekly ‘ circle of friends’ where we all take turns standing up and sharing with the group. The timid ones now share something more than one whispered word, in fact they have trouble waiting their turn to speak up. And yes, the teachers at the elementary school notice which kids are ours. Thank you for your partnership in raising up a new generation of world changers who can and will speak up.


Blessings from above

“He causes his sun to shine on the evil and good and send rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” Matthew 5:45

Even God’s children attempt to control his surroundings but the certainty is he cannot control the weather, only our Creator can do such a powerful thing. We praise Him for sending abundant rains which we have not seen in 5 years. Door of Hope now has about half the avocado trees it once had. Once a week irrigation water was not enough to save many of the trees and the water table on the well could not keep up with thirsty trees planted in sandy soil. Rejoice with us for the rain! We are working hard removing the dead trees, fertilizing and drastic pruning of the survivors and praying. We sell the harvest twice a year to fund improvement for ministry. Please pray that the sale income will increase because we need a couple more classrooms with the increase in attendance each week. We will be planting a variety of new trees as well as using some of the new open spaces for garden areas for the kids to plant, harvest, eat and give away to needy families. Rain, beautiful rain,,,,a gift from above.


“Amazing love”

Amazing love,,,how can it be….? We thank God for his abundant love evidenced by all of you. Be it kind words of encouragement, coming to see first hand, inviting us to visit you, meeting a special need, your prayers which hold us up, asking about our family or your continued financial support, in all this we are amazed. Our lives could not be spent serving others without YOU. We do confess that we are occasionally stuck in a maze until we recognize this amazing life carved out by His amazing love. Door of Hope would be just a dream if God had not called us all to offer Him a sacrifice for His glory by His grace. Thank you, each and every one for hearing His voice to honor Him in so many wonderful ways so we can sit humbly at Jesus’ feet amazed everyday


at what He is doing in us, through us and all around us here in Chaquibamba, Ecuador. Amazing love, how can it be……..


Truck and Body

As many of you know we have had numerous problems for the past two years with our truck. We use this truck almost everyday for ministry. It is our sole means of transportation of the supplies for ministry as well as a bus to move children. In January of last year the en- gine blew up and left us without transportation for about 3 months. I rebuilt the engine and eventually got it running and even passed the annual emission testing for Ecuador.

Since then we have had to repair the truck numerous times and now are faced with doing so again.

We have been so blessed by the above and beyond giving from supporting churches. These churches through their faithful prayer and open hearts have made sacrifices to help the Door of Hope.

We are in the process of purchasing another car but it will not be ready until mid June.

Just as the truck has been a constant challenge, my body since last January has been in revolt. Around December of 2015 I started feeling kinda run down, not having energy and just generally exhausted. Finally I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with pneumonia. Several months later I began to return to normal. Thanks to so many who prayed for God to heal me.

This past November I began to feel poorly again. I could not keep the food that I was eating in. I was eating and about as fast as I would eat it would leave. I was trying several home remedies but to no avail. I finally went to the doctor who diagnosed me with salmonela. I began treatment with antibiotics and began to feel better. Then in two weeks back in the same condition if not worse than before. when I returned to the doctor he diagnosed me as having giardiasis. Again with the antibiotics but this time I was cured. In the process I lost about 20 pounds. Although I probably needed to lose a little, 20 pounds was a bit much. I have finally got my appetite back and am now beginning to regain some of that weight back as well as regaining energy and stamina.

Lessons learned from these experiences:

God is in control and never believe that anything depends only on ME.

Its only a truck and it only has so much life in it.

I (we) are here by Gods will and not by ours.

We could not be here if it were not for all of you faithfully praying and supporting us in the good times and the bad.

Train up and send out others to serve the Lord. They will do far more and greater things then we could ever do.

Thank you one and all for lifting us, me and the truck up in your prayers.

Oct 2016 – Newsletter

Erika, Dad, death and a tent

She came through the gate timidly, with great hesitation and sadness about her. You see this was the first time Nataly had come back here since her nine year old Erika had been killed by a hit and run while the whole family was returning home after buying supplies for a big party the next day. Puerta de Esperanza was teaming with activity and life as we were gathering this Sunday morning to celebrate and worship, followed by a parents meeting. As she came closer with her youngest daughter Cecelia at her side, I approached her and wrapped my arms around her as her tears began to flow. It was not comfortable for her to be surrounded by life and joy.

Tim and I drove up to their house the morning after the tragedy after a relative called to let us know about the accident. We didn’t find mom or dad or Erika’s three sisters, we did find some neighbors which we knew because we had lived almost next door 6 years ago. They shared their concern about not being able to find a tent for the service because all of them were rented. They had already cleaned and cleared the area on the patio and they were expecting the family and body to arrive that afternoon. One week earlier we had taken down our tent for the first time in five years so we offered to loan it to them. On our way home from setting up the tent, we stopped to let some of our kids and families know what had happened since we cancelled program that day. That was one of the hardest things I have ever done. These kids had been Erika’s friends since before kindergarten.

That afternoon we returned to Nataly’s house for the beginning of the three day memorial service. As I sat under the tent which protected the coffin with this little broken body of Erika, God played back the many times-years earlier she showed up at our gate with her big amazing smile. She wasn’t even two when we first met her and her family. We watched her grow into a very social, happy girl as she was taught about Christ and His love every week. She was with us and her friends the day before the accident. Here we sat, watched and listened as we cared with them and held them, we felt overwhelmed but not defeated. We have had to deal with death more here in Ecuador than any other time in our lives, but never a nine year old child we had loved and cared for.

I praise God for the tent over all of us that evening as well as the years we taught and shared under it. The tent was bought with a memorial offering from Ooltelwah UMC upon the death of Tim’s dad. Their deaths are connected, not just by the tent, but by God and by hope.
You see, the same tent that was above her broken, lifeless body is the same tent that was above her as she first learned about Jesus’ love for her the years leading up to her short life on earth ending. Erika loved Jesus and continues to love Him now.

“He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and He will deliver us. On Him we have set our hope that He will deliver us again. You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many.”
2 Corinthians 1:10-11

When Nataly came that day and settled into life around her almost three months later, we had some time to do some remembering so she could begin to have her broken heart healed. She shared how Erika would just sing Jesus loves me when she was happy and when she was scared. I shared about how the tent connected two deaths and many lives. Our loss is God’s gain.

Thank you for listening to God to support us with your many prayers and all the material gifts that are proving to be excellent long term investments. Only God can heal broken hearts and lives but I am so honored to play a part.

Playground and Beyond

Bigger + Better playground = Happy active kids. Every inch of wood has been sanded and painted or treated thanks to a mission team from Ootelwah, TN. We also added three more swings, a climbing wall, a new tower with a tire swing, climbing rope and tunnel. We hope to add a slide, fireman pole and trapeze bar soon. A second new tower will support a giant climbing net as well as some exciting new elements

Beyond the playground are several improvements; a new dishwashing station, tile installed in the bathrooms and walkway, tile in the office and new doors in the bathroom, six new tables, a bench seat and huge landscaped areas. The garage and workshop are advancing as well.

“But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.”
2 Corinthians 4:7

A job very well done

One of our young ladies who has been part of Puerta de Esperanza for many years graduated with honors in July. She was number one in her school and top in the state of Pichincha as well a honored at a ceremony with the president. Paulina is the oldest of five and blazes the way as an example of excellence and hard work to achieve a better life accompanied by her family her Lord Jesus. The condition of her humble family has her looking for a scholarship to continue her education which at the moment for the country may be impossible this year. She is still very hopeful to go back to school in the future and thanks God for courage to serve Him and help her family as she waits. She has been a Compassion International sponsored child since age seven and will continue with us in a program called “Give Back” where she will serve the church as she learns new ministry and life skills as a tutor. She has charge of 15 children ages 6-7. She is a valuable example we aspire the youth and children we and you have invested in to follow. With Christ, everything is possible!!!

“Time to Go”

We had such a fun time teaching, learning, puppeting, singing, dancing and playing during this summer’s Bible Camp VBS. We had to wait until the last week of vacation so more kids would be back in town. We learned Bible stories about when Jesus went about to many places to share the Good News and how it is “time to go” to share with others. This was my first year not teaching the Bible lessons, I did crafts and Tim organized recreation. Our tutors did an amazing job in the workshops and many of our youth were guides/teachers assistants.

My favorite part was the impressive, energized and genuine worship time. 20 youth and 5 tutors learned and taught 7 songs with choreographies in 4 days. It was crazy! The songs were all based on the Bible stories of the day so after they had fun learning, they took home the stories of hope and healing thru Jesus. With over 150 kids we realized we need more tables and spaces to be more effective when they come in so that afterwards we can go out. #couldthisreallybeajob#

“ “Glitterman” Our Very Own Superhero”

As our VBS team was preparing for ministry we were making banners and giant flowers with glitter foamy. In most cases I hate glitter, it gets everywhere and is difficult to clean up even after months of not using it. As we were wrapping up the glittery experience, I noticed all 25 servants were glowing with glitter. I caught glimpse of Erik who has a contagious, inspiring attitude trying to remove the glitter because he had to ride home on the bus. I shared with them that as we prepare to shine for Jesus, we need to be like glitter, we need to rub off on all those we meet.

I now call Erik glitterman because his passion and joy has ignited our youth and kids over the two years he has served here with us. His passion for Christ as he teaches music and worship is rubbing off on his students.

He has gone with us on two short term mission trips and seems to have caught a vision to reach others. He will be going on mission to Venezuela for 6 weeks in October and November. We can hardly wait to hear what God reveals to him as he spreads glitter in the hearts of all he meets. Join us in praying for him.

New year offering Hope

September marks a new school year of hope and possibilities with 84 Compassion International sponsored kids. We are challenged with many changes and higher goals to impact this generation for the Kingdom.

First challenge —Compassion International has restructured several people and processes which gives us a new facilitator (our link to the central office) to work with. We are learning the new processes as both sides work out the kinks.

Second challenge — our director Esther has a new job in Quito so the work she has done for four years is now divided in two positions – Director Tim and Secretary – Nelly. We have also been blessed with 15 new kids so we now have four groups on Thursdays so we need more space and tables. We are excited to add Paulina as 6-7 year olds tutor, 3-5 year olds and Bible teacher Daina, 8-9 year olds Nelly and 10-11 year olds Erik. Lunch bunch 12-14 year olds now come to the church on Wednesday’s instead of the rented room in town. All youth 12-20 meet on Saturdays led by Erik and Tim.

We are getting up to speed with the challenges that change brings. We are hopeful and excited to see what the new year of possibilities yields. Thank you all who support and sponsor kids through Compassion International, it truly is a life impacting ministry around the world. As you support the ministries of Puerta de Esperanza you all give hope and love to many additional kids who do not qualify with CI. Pray for them, their families and us.

Our brother Segundo

A little over a year ago we asked Segundo if he could work for a couple of weeks to help us out with a few projects. Well those two weeks turned into almost a year of work. We had been richly blessed with a generous offering that has provided for the ever expanding ministry of Puerta de Esperanza.

Segundo has helped to construct many new paved areas as well as improvements to the ministry bathrooms with tile on the walls and floors. He has helped to construct the garage and workshop and with several landscape issues involving construction of a large retaining wall. All of this was completed while ministry was going on around him so he got a first hand look at the challenges and joys involved on a week by week basis.

I must say it requires a very special person to put up with trying to work on construction projects in the midst of chaos with children running around. Segundo certainly has or at least developed that talent over the last year. It is so hard to believe at how much work has been done in the last year. All things are possible with God. We thank Him for allowing us the privilege to have Segundo here for so long. We have been truly blessed by God and by Segundo. He has left his mark on much of the ministry here at Puerta de Esperanza.
It is our prayer that as we have been blessed by his diligent and skillful hands that God blesses him abundantly as he goes about blessing others. Thank you Segundo.

Great things God is doing with our youth

Hey everybody, Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve written anything for newsletters. Esther, James and I through God’s guidance have taken a position as Dorm parents at Alliance Academy International in Quito and we are very busy at our new job. Before moving on to where we are now, we were working with the youth at Door of Hope and we saw wonderful growth. In our time as youth pastors we had lots of events, but our most fruitful endeavors were 2 workshops we did, on sexual education and on drugs and alcohol. The most recent one we did was on drugs and alcohol, and it was a very fun experience as we went over all the different drugs there are and why as followers of Christ we should not consume them. We also had the privilege of testimonies from Ted Wasson and Matt Burton from Ooltewah UMC. Esther and I have seen growth in more than just numbers but also in the hearts of the kids, I would love to share specific details but it could fill pages just describing the small changes of heart that blossom into entire transformations of a lives. Esther and I are praying that God will continue to bless the youth Ministry at Door of Hope through my father and Erick.

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Ways to get involved .

Ways to get involved .
Windows for the ministry center $200 each.
Storage bench with cushions for Clubhouse $300
Bookcase $100 each
Ministry center cabinets$150
Desks $50 each
Vehicle fund

Any donations for these projects should be sent to: The Mission Society Designated DATWYLER SPECIAL PROJECT ACCOUNT

Prayer Request:

Favor with our neighbors.

Our continued church growth.

The economy of Ecuador.

Our truck to hold out until we can get a newer one.

More spaces to do ministry.

A new meeting place in town.

Lets connect

Email: datfam4ecuador@gmail.com

Web site: puertadeesperanza.org

Skype TimDaina.Datwyler

Skype direct dial: 678-701-4825

Tax deductible gifts may be sent to:

The Mission Society
P.O.BOX 922637
Norcross, GA 30010-2637

Designate gifts:

Bonnie Burton Testimony

My short term mission experience has come full circle in several ways with my recent trip to work with Tim & Daina Datwyler at Puerta de Esperanza in Chaquibamba, Ecuador this past July. It all started in 2000 when my husband Matt, went on his first mission trip to serve with Peter & Esther Periera in Hyderabad, India. He came back with his heart broken and knew our family had to experience short term missions. He continued to serve in India about once a year for the next 7 years but we felt our children were too young for the two of us to go together. Within a few years though, we were able to serve together as a family with Tim & Daina in Monterrey, Mexico, where we returned to celebrateThanksgiving 2 times with the locals.

In 2007, my youngest son Chris and I were able to join up with the Datwyler’s again as I co-led another team from OUMC to Quito, where they were now serving. I returned again the next year, co-leading another team. I’ve always been in awe at the hard work and dedication of the Datwyler’s; and found a warmth and ease in the people of Ecuador. Unfortunately, due to the need to care for my mother during the summer when our team usually went, I was unable to return to Ecuador.

In November of 2014, I had the opportunity to travel to India with Matt to serve with the Periera’s and see the one mission field that my husband had served on that I had not. To complete this circle, I was able to co-lead a team with my husband this time, and he was able to finally come to Ecuador and serve on the mission field that I had been on, that he had not. But perhaps better than having my husband with me on the mission field (and I’m not sure if there is much better than that) was seeing and remembering people from eight years ago. Some of the children that were so small were now in middle school and maybe didn’t remember me at first, but it didn’t take long to renew these relationships.

The word that comes to my mind when I think of the ministry that Tim & Daina have going on is “family”. They offer a safe, nurturing environment that focuses on bringing families together and offering the Word of God. They have started with focus on children, who in turn bring in their mothers and some fathers, but they don’t plan to stop there. They are offering music ministry, recreation, teaching and Tim is wanting to expand to offering the men some real trade skills. You’ve heard the phrase, “Build it and they will come.” Well Tim & Daina have been building non-stop since they bought their property, the locals are coming and they are building a community of believers!

I know there are many of you who have had the opportunity to serve with Puerta de Esperanza, please share your experience with us and send your testimonies or pictures to: angelkiss_1986@hotmail or through our Facebook page:  www.facebook.com/PuertaDeEsperanza