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When arriving on base in Mazatlán, one is likely to meet young people from all over the world. Becca Linsday, an 18 year old early childhood educator, is one such individual. Becca, originally from New Zealand, but now living in Australia, comes to Mazatlán after travelling 7,790 miles from Townsville, Australia.
Becca began her search for the right DTS base by looking in the United States, and soon after decided to expand her search into Mexico. She came across the base in Mazatlán and knew it was the right one for her. “That’s simply it,” Becca remarks, recalling how she felt when feeling the call to Mexico. Becca comes to Mazatlán with the goal of growing in her relationship with God. Her highlight of the YWAM DTS thus far has been learning about the Father heart of God, while her biggest challenge has been adapting to living in community. She looks forward to outreach in December, both nervous and excited about evangelism at the same time.
From the heart of Mexico comes 18 year old Karen Olvera, a recent high school graduate from the Mexico City area. Karen is not a newcomer to Mazatlán, as she has been at the YWAM base for the past two summers as a student at Verano de Fuego. This time, she comes for “Vida Nuevo,” a new life. Rather than attend DTS near her hometown, she made the decision to travel farther, and selected Mazatlán since she likes the city and finds it beautiful. Her highlight so far has been learning about the Father heart of God, and that relates directly to one of her favorite verses, Psalm 27:10, in which David writes, “Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me.” Karen receives comfort knowing that God promises to be her father and protect her. She is excited to learn all she can from the classes. Another highlight for Karen has been visiting a local orphanage weekly to meet with the kids and tell them about Jesus. “I like seeing the kids smile,” says Karen with a warm, sincere smile.
Travelling from the opposite end of North America is Martijn Van Ramshorst, an 18 year old high school graduate from Maple Ridge in British Columbia, Canada. Martijn, originally from Nijkerk, Holland, felt the call to missions in seventh grade. He decided that completing a DTS with YWAM would be a great introduction into missions, and selected Mazatlán in part because of his interest in the Latin American culture. Martijn’s highlight has been “seeing God as a passionate and loving Father,” while also doing Bible distribution in one of the colonias. His challenges so far have been learning to discern God’s voice from his own thoughts and the language barrier he experiences during the times of ministry. He looks forward to putting what he’s learned into practice during outreach and experiencing more in missions. Martijn is especially drawn to Matthew 25:40, knowing that when he does things for others, he is ultimately doing them for Jesus.
Besides living at the same base, the common ground for Becca, Karen, and Martijn is their desire to grow closer in their relationship with God. It’s evident that hearts from New Zealand, Mexico, and Canada are actually moving closer to the heart of the same Father.
From left to right: Becca, Karen, Martijn