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  • Liz Ortiz

Making a Joyful Noise unto the Lord!

On Sunday morning, we noticed something strange: a large vehicle with some type of lift parked right in front of the church. “I wonder what is going on,” my mom commented as we pulled into the parking lot. As soon as we walked into the dark building, our questions were answered. The power was out. People were directed to the fellowship hall where there was more natural lighting, and chairs were quickly set up so everyone could have a seat for the worship service. We sang hymns together. No worship band, just our voices. It was a beautiful sound.

As we were singing the hymns, I remembered the "Hymn of the Month Club" that Joe Ann Shelton started for us kids. Each month there was a new hymn that if we memorized, we received a bag of M&Ms or Skittles. I loved learning the hymns and singing them. With no electricity there were no slides with lyrics. It didn’t matter, because the words to the hymns came back to me just like when I recited them for Skittles as a kid. I am so thankful for people like Joe Ann Shelton who poured their lives in sharing the Gospel with me and coming up with creative ways to do it. The worship service may have not gone as planned, but it was none-the-less beautiful and a Sunday that I won’t soon forget.

I lost both of my grandmothers when I was young. Both of my grandmothers loved the Lord. I know they would have been excited about my missionary journey and been my prayer warriors. I often wish I could pick up the phone to talk with my grandmothers about missions. But I can’t. This is another reason why I loved Joe Ann Shelton (and Joyce too) so much. They filled in that role that was missing for me. Joe Ann and Joyce were like 2nd grandmothers to me. We laughed, we cried, and most importantly we prayed together. I would not be the person I am today without Joe Ann and Joyce. On June 2, 2022, Joe Ann went to be with her precious Savior whom she loved so much. Although I am sad that she is gone, my heart is filled with joy in knowing that she is singing like she has never sang before for her Savior, Jesus Christ. My heart may mourn, but not without hope that can only be found in Christ. I will see Joe Ann, and what a wonderful day that will be!

It has been a busy month in Quebec! I had the Parole de Vie Bible school graduation and finished an intensive semester of language school (including some fun field trips!). There were 6 Bible school students who graduated. It was encouraging to see their hard work pay off. Please pray for these graduates as they start a new chapter in life. It has been a joy to get to know these students and do life with them at Parole de Vie. I am excited to see what God has in store for them.

The language school is on a summer break, so on July 1st, I flew back to Michigan. I am glad that I can be home for my little brother's graduation party this Saturday. Please pray for God's leading in Philip's life as he gets ready to start college. Please pray for opportunities for me to practice speaking French this summer. Also, please pray for a vehicle for me. It would be helpful to be able to get around while I am home. Thank you all for praying and following me on this journey. The path isn’t always easy, but I’m thankful that Christ is leading the way.

God bless,

Liz Ortiz

Prayer Requests:

● Pray for a provision of vehicle while I am home for July and August.

● Pray for opportunities for me to practice speaking French while I am home.

● Pray for patience as I study and learn the French language.

● Pray for an ASL interpreter for Togo – big opportunity for one!

● Pray for more opportunities for me to practice signing.


● Praise God for a safe flight back home to Michigan!

● Praise God for the 6 Bible school graduates!

● Praise God that I finished the intensive semester of French!

● Praise God for the wonderful community here at Parole de Vie.

● Praise God for all my wonderful partners!

● Praise God that Jonas is doing well in school


● July 16th-17th sharing at FBC of Albion

● July 25th-28th attending ABWE’s Missionary Enrichment Conference


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