UPDATE 201809 – GOD IS GOOD!!!

September 1, 2018

“God is good…All the time!  And all the time…God is good!”

In my first church, this was a common saying and response.  We may feel this easy to say when times are good but so much harder when times are, well, not so good.  In the midst of what we have been going through these last few months, I can honestly and most powerfully say God IS Still Good!!  He is so good.  Especially in the midst of trials and chaos that so often surrounds us.  We have truly held onto the truth that “His mercies are new every morning” and “in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”  We can say through it all that God is good.  We hope and pray you can see how good God is in your life too.



I must begin with an absolute positive show of God’s goodness to PCA and our ministry.  This month we received the largest donation yet from our partnership with ANF.  Not only did we receive enough food for the rest of the year to feed our children and help children in two other communities, but we received school supplies, desks, chairs, furniture, clothing, shoes, notebooks, paint and many other items we were in great need of.  We are super excited about the opportunities this will give us to reach out and give more to those who are in need.  Already we have given out notebooks and clothing to the community of Los Arados where we recently built a chapel.  Our goal is to use or give away everything by December.

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God is truly amazing.  Yet another reason why God is so good is that even in the midst of the greatest civil unrest since the civil war in the 80’s, PCA has graciously not been impacted by the situation.  Every day, our children are able to attend school and maintain their normal lives.  This is sadly not the case in other parts of Nicaragua right now.  We are truly grateful the school is continuing to serve the families of Palacaguina and do even more than we have ever done before.  PCA is strong and moving forward thanks to our leadership, staff and so many of you who continue to support us and make PCA a possibility every month.

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We wanted to highlight two activities from August.  (1) The students, parents and staff have been working hard to represent PCA well in the upcoming Independence Day celebrations.  We have new patriotic uniforms and recognition of student excellence to add to our returning band in the city parade this year.  And (2), our 4 year old class put on a play for the story of Little Red Riding Hood.  What a great job by our students.  And a special thanks to our parents who of course worked hard on their costumes.

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We are actively working to complete our steps and handicap ramp to our next classrooms and have completed the planning and design of our main office for next year.  What a difference it will make to have an official main office for the school.  Next we will be tiling our 2nd grade classroom and working more on our kitchen/cafeteria space.

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We are so grateful for all of you who have been praying for us and reaching out to us in this time.  We know God is good because of the wonderful people He has put in our lives who love and care for us.  Though we are still separated, we are doing well.  The Wyoming crew is continuing homeschooling every day and fully enjoying every moment with Grandmamaw and Grandpapaw.  Michael and I have been settling into a new normal and getting wonderful opportunities to see friends and family.  Looking forward to all being together by the end of September and staying in Central Arkansas through October.



Though we had hopes of returning to Palacaguina in October, this is not going to be possible for two reasons.  First, the situation in Nicaragua is still very volatile.  There have definitely been a reduction in all out violence, however, protesting is still ongoing, civil order has not returned, the people are still unhappy and there is still the very real potential of things getting worse fast.  Second, by God’s grace after coming to the US, we identified a medical condition in our family that will require us to be in the US for treatment.  We have determined a minimum of one-year to be in the US for this and are working on the details.  We know God is directing every step and we are grateful we can continue working with and operating the school even in our absence.



  • Though expensive, we were able to shield the school and Arete from sharing any of our evacuation expenses. Thank you God for providing for us and helping us not impact the school in this.
  • God continues to provide transportation and temporary housing for our family.
  • Identification of a new method for getting funds into Nicaragua without fees.



  • Pray for us as we search for a used car for our family. Specifically, for a good used Honda Pilot.
  • Pray for us as we seek direction on where God wants us to land for our time stateside until we can return to Nicaragua.
  • Pray for a medical condition that has arisen in our family. Nothing life-threatening, but will require treatment over the next year and a lot of changes.




  • If you would like to help fund our side of the ANF partnership that allows us to feed children every day, provide clothing and supplies for communities and help us obtain the desks, furniture and school supplies we need to operate we would love your help. We have a $1000 payment for this yearly partnership coming in December.  Let us know if you would like to give towards this need.
  • Our cafeteria area is almost completed. $2500 will finish the roof over our new addition and $1200 will finish our seating.  An additional $5000 will complete the actual kitchen.
  • We are working to complete our primary school classrooms 2nd through 4th It costs approximately $2,300 per classroom for flooring and furnishings to have it ready for students.  You could help us be ready.
  • Our next major project is to build our 5th and 6th grade classrooms addition. This will add, two classrooms, bathrooms and much needed storage.  The project is estimated at $11,000 to complete the foundation and 1st floor and an additional $12,000 to finish the second floor.
  • To complete the Preschool we will need to finish the front wall and gates. This project would be one of our last big projects for the structure of the school and is estimated at $9,580.



Thank you for your prayers, your reaching out, your thoughts and your continued support of our family and PCA through everything.  We are encouraged about the future of PCA and the ministry.  We know it is crazy right now, but we believe it will get better and we will eventually be able to return to Palacaguina.  And how good it is to know that you will be with us in that.  God is good!!  AMEN!!!

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Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!  (God Bless you from the Witonski family)


Want more frequent updates, pictures and videos?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/



Update #2018-08 – So Many Unknowns

August 4, 2018

When can we return to Nicaragua? Where do we live if it takes more time? What can we do now?  Why are we here, when our hearts are in Palacaguina?  How do we take the next step?  Even though there are so many unknowns we are facing right now, we know beyond any doubt that God is Good!  And His plans are good!  God does not need us to figure everything out, He just needs us to trust in the fact that He has it figured out.

In our last update, we shared about our family having to evacuate Nicaragua.  I want to share more about this but first I want to share about how God is still moving, the school is going strong and there are doors of opportunity for reaching more people with the Gospel.



There are several new projects we have been able to complete this month and we are well on our way to getting ready for 2nd grade next year.  We were able to finish the cafeteria floor, an electrical project, new doors, and some much-needed drainage projects.  Next, we will be working on other projects to get our 2nd grade classroom completed and focusing on finishing our kitchen and main office space.  Thank you to all of our wonderful partners continuing to help us move forward every month.

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We have added two new students from Managua and we are grateful to have them.  Even more, we are able to provide a safe and structured environment filled with the love of Christ.  We are so happy to be able to provide this to families and children who are being displaced.



We are happy to announce that our partnership with ANF is going to continue for another year.  We will be signing a new one-year partnership with ANF in the coming weeks and this is going to ensure we are able to provide daily meals for our children as well as a few surrounding communities.  This year we are also going to be receiving school supplies, furniture, and many other items as they are available.  Praise the Lord for this partnership.  If you would like to help with the $2,000 cost of this partnership that provides food every day and so many other benefits, please let us know or give at www.lovepala.com.



Last month I shared about a chapel the local church we attend built in a small village.  We have had the opportunity to be a part of building another chapel in another community desperately in need of a place to worship.  This chapel will create a new place of ministry and many opportunities to reach this new community with the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Praise the Lord!  As the situation in Nicaragua continues on, more people are searching for real answers.  What a blessing to provide a place for those who are seeking answers to find the one true answer.  Hope, in this life, is found solely in Jesus Christ.  Amen?  Amen!

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Technically, we are now refugees.  How in the world did we get to this place?  To be honest, we have no idea.  But, what we do know is that God is still directing our steps and He is still good!  We know God has called our family to Nicaragua, and we believe His call is still strong.  However, we are not able to be present in our home due to the situation.  At this point, we are trusting God to show us our next immediate steps, but absolutely committed to our calling.  Thankfully the school has been running normally through the month of July and we are grateful for our incredible friends and staff who have stepped up to fill our absence.  We hope to have a better idea next update of what this chapter of our journey is going to be.  For now, we simply ask for your prayers.  Please pray for direction, understanding, wisdom and grace as we move forward.



Over the next few months, I look forward to continuing meeting with many of you in Central Arkansas and sharing in person all God has been doing at PCA and the hope we have for the future of the school and the ministry.  If you would like to reach out to me and schedule a time to get together, please reply.  I want you to see how good God can be even in the midst of uncertainty and chaos.  Our faith is strong and the future is bright.


  • Please pray for Nicaragua to have a peaceful resolution soon to the current situation.
  • Please pray for God to use our time in the states for His glory.
  • Please pray for God to move on our behalf regarding school transportation, land purchases, and business opportunities to help the future of PCA.


  • God’s miraculous intervention and clear favor in our evacuations
  • A warm home to be in during our temporary situation
  • A car to use while we are in the states
  • Provision for additional expenses we have incurred



We are so grateful for all of you who are continuing to pray and partner with us through everything.  It would not be possible to keep running the school and making an impact in Palacaguina without you.  Thank you for remaining committed to this ministry and what God is doing in Nicaragua.  Know and trust in God’s plans.  Though we do not always understand every step, God is faithful and will complete the work He has started.


Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!  (God Bless you from the Witonski family)

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Want more frequent updates, pictures and videos?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/



Update #2018-07 – WHAT AN ADVENTURE

July 1, 2018

What a month June has been.  Amidst the greatest civil unrest Nicaragua has experienced since the 80’s, God is still doing amazing things.  PCA is moving forward, educating and reaching out to the children and families of Palacaguina and all because of your prayers and support.  We finished several projects this month and had several opportunities to minister and love on others.  So grateful God has called us to work in Palacaguina.  We hope you enjoy seeing the pictures in this update and read to the end for a special update on our family.



One of the most exciting happenings in June was the completion of our primary school playground.  The pictures can barely begin to express the excitement of the 1st graders.  They love their new playground and we are so grateful to the WPC Youth who created the space with the fence and sand as well as for the wonderful donor who paid for the structures to be created.  Thank you so much for providing this amazing place for our children to play.

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1st Grade TV

A major part of our English class has been the ability to show videos.  We were able to purchase and install the TV for the first grade class this month.  Thank you to the donor who has so far provided all of our classroom TVs.  These are used every day to teach and we are grateful to have them.  This is one more capability that sets PCA apart.








Two of our Preschool children participated in a local International Folk Festival.  They competed in a dance competition where they performed a traditional Nicaraguan dance.  It was a blessing to watch and see PCA getting to participate in this event.  One of the ways we are able to be a part of the community.

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I was humbled to be invited by this small church in the mountains of Palacaguina to a delicious meal.  I cannot begin to describe what an honor this was to be given so much from people who have so little.  They slaughtered a goat for us and fed us so much.  This chapel our church in Palacaguina built is the only church in this village of about 400 people.  It is amazing to see what God is doing.

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A definite highlight this month was participating in a youth camp we did in Palacaguina.  We had 126 youth come out for a day of worship, teaching, food, & fun.  I was the games coordinator for the camp and it was so much fun.  I love getting to work with and spend time with the wonderful people of Nicaragua.  God is so good!!

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This year, for Father’s Day, we had an event at our house for the men of our church.  It was great to have about 18 men come up and spend the day just fellowshipping and spending time in God’s Word together.  They made an outdoor stove and cooked some delicious traditional soup and I even made some stove-top popcorn for the first time.  It was a great day of Fellowship.

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As of this update we only have 2 children who need a sponsor.  Sponsorship not only covers the cost of education, but also provides a meal each day and ministry programs for the children.  If you or someone you know would like to sponsor a child at $40 per month, please let us know or go to our website at www.lovepala.com.

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It is with great sadness we had to make a decision this month to evacuate the family from Nicaragua for a short time.  Due to the increasing violence and instability of the political situation, our Board of Directors requested we leave Nicaragua to give the country time to stabilize.  Though we did not want to leave and have never felt in direct danger, we are being obedient to those in authority over us and trusting in their wisdom.  We immediately evacuated part of the family on June 13th to Wyoming and I followed on June 29th to Arkansas.  I needed to stay in order to prepare PCA and our home for our absence.  We hope to return to Palacaguina within the next few months.  Thank you for those of you who have been praying for our safety during this time.  We know God is going to use our time in the states for His glory.  And I look forward to spending time meeting with many of you and our partners in Central Arkansas in the month of July.  This all happened very quickly and we have so many mixed emotions we are processing through.  We were able to leave the school in great hands and the school will continue to operate normally in our absence.  This will be a great test of our continuity plan for the school and we feel the school will not have any issues for this short time of us not being there.  Please continue to pray God will open doors for us to safely return to our beloved home, Palacaguina.


  • Please pray for Nicaragua to have a peaceful resolution soon to the current situation.
  • Please pray for God to use our time in the states for His glory.
  • Please pray for a new 1-year volunteer to start in January to teach English in 2nd
  • Please pray for God to move on our behalf regarding school transportation, land purchases, and business opportunities to help the future of PCA.


It is amazing to see what God can do through the willing hearts of His people.  We are absolutely grateful for each of you who are praying for, giving to and telling others about all God is doing in Palacaguina.  We would not be able to do all of this without you.  97 children, families, youth, other communities, and many more are being touched by the love and grace of God and it is all because of you.  We are blessed to be a part of what God is doing and so grateful you are by our side through it all.  We know God will finish all He has started.

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Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!  (God Bless you from the Witonski family)

The Witonski Family <><

Want more frequent updates, pictures and videos?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/




June 1, 2018

It is that time of year again, the rain is plentiful, everything is turning green and the bugs outnumber people a million to 1.  That’s right, it is INSECTAGEDDON 2018.  We could definitely be the backdrop for one of those really bad B Movies.  Like When Moths Attack or Attack of the Killer June Bug or Flying Ants Destroy the World.  This is definitely an “experience”.  Maybe not one everyone would enjoy, but something we are learning to live with in our new world.  We have adjusted accordingly with changes such as not having lights on after the sun goes down (Dad is loving the electricity savings) and showering by candle light so the moths do not negate the shower you just took.  All in all, it is good.  Happy to see the mountains turning green and seeing the rain coming from far away through the mountains is such a beautiful sight to see.


So much has happened in the month of May.  I returned from my US Trip, we are making much progress on the primary school playground, we have a new English volunteer and we have been blessed with many more stories of God’s faithfulness and provision.  Let us take a look at all God has been doing in the ministry and the school over the last month.


I have to thank each of you who prayed for our trip to the US.  This was our first trip of its kind and one we have decided most definitely needs to be repeated each year as it was an extremely successful trip.  We were able to connect with old friends and meet so many new friends along the way.  Out of 26 children we needed to sponsor, 22 were sponsored.  PRAISE GOD!!  This is going to open so many doors this year and next.  This means we are no longer operating in a super deficit for the year and we will be able to help fund Uniforms, books, school supplies, and other programs we have been eager to do.  This also means we will be able to afford our partnership with ANF for another year to continue providing food, clothing and other materials for our children and other communities.  God is so good and I am so thankful for all of our new partners who are working with us to Change a Generation.  We will be deciding dates and details for our 2019 trip soon.

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We are seeing this major need come to reality.  It started in April with a team of youth who built the fencing and provided the sand and continues with the construction of playground equipment.  We are creating three structures: teeter-totters, slides and monkey bars.  Though we still need about $3,000 to finish the playground, we are hoping to finish with what we currently have in June so the children can begin playing on their new equipment.

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Ok, maybe not apples to apples, but still an amazing story.  A little girl who lives across from the school is getting the opportunity of a lifetime.  April (not her real name) would come every day to work and play alongside our last missions team.  One of the youth serving (we will call her Jill) fell in love with April (not hard to do).  When Jill returned, she shared with her family and they decided to adopt April’s future, literally.  April’s family, though living across from the school and wanting April to attend, did not have the means to do so.   Jill and her family have given April and her family a reason to hope for an amazing future for April.  Jill’s family is not only sponsoring her as a PCA partner, but they are going to sponsor the family’s expenses as well.  AND they want to do this all the way through graduation.  When I shared this with April’s family, they were overwhelmed and you could see the gratefulness in their hearts for the opportunity this brings to their little girl.  April’s first day at PCA was yesterday and after school I asked her how her first day went and let me say, her amazing smile was so bright as she exclaimed how great it was.  It is such a joy to see, first hand, the happiness and hope you bring when you sponsor a child and give them the promise of education.  I wish each of you could see the impact you are making that I get to see every day.  Thank you for giving hope and a future to all of the little Aprils.  You are making such a difference.

Celebrating Moms

Nicaragua takes celebrating Moms to a whole new level.  As a school, PCA was able to honor all of our Moms with a special celebration and lunch.  Thank you to all of the great Moms who sacrifice and work so hard to love us and help our lives to be great!!  We love you Mom!!

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Making a Difference

Thanks to a successful trip to the US and our funding almost being complete, we were able to award more 50% scholarships to local families struggling so hard to give their children a bright future.  This brings our ½ scholarship recipients up to 40 children.  A little less than half of our families attending PCA.  The need is great, but we are grateful to be making a difference every way we can.







NatashaLuis-closeWelcome Natasha

We are super excited to be welcoming to PCA Natasha.  Natasha, recently married, moved to Nicaragua in March.  Her husband is from Palacaguina.  I cannot express enough how grateful we are Natasha is now serving as our first grade English teacher.  We are hopeful Natasha will partner with us for many years to Change a Generation and be the difference for our children learning English.  She has already made a HUGE impact in only a few short weeks.  Welcome to PCA Natasha!!!  You are a direct answer to our and so many others’ prayers.



As of this update we only have 4 children who need a sponsor.  Sponsorship not only covers the cost of education, but also provides a meal each day and ministry programs for the children.  If you or someone you know would like to sponsor a child at $40 per month, please let us know or go to our website at www.lovepala.com.

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  • Please pray for a new 1-year volunteer to start in January to teach English in 2nd
  • Please pray for God to move on our behalf regarding school transportation, land purchases, and business opportunities to help the future of PCA.
  • Please pray for Nicaragua to have a peaceful resolution soon to the current situation. Our family is doing ok for any concerned.  Just trusting in God to use us where He has called us.


Once again we are reminded of how limited we are on our own in fulfilling the call God has given our family.  We absolutely could not do anything we are doing without all of you supporting us with your prayers and your giving.  God can do so much through His people when we join together to fulfill the Great Commission and we are so blessed to be able to see and experience this directly.  You are literally the hands and feet of Christ working along-side us to make a difference in the lives of the children and families of Palacaguina.  Thank you so much for your sacrifice and for all you do!!









Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!  (God Bless you from the Witonski family)

The Witonski Family <><

Want more frequent updates, pictures and videos?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/



Update #2018-05 – STORY TIME

May 2, 2018

Everyone loves a good story, especially when it encourages us to believe in something greater than ourselves and helps give us the strength to overcome. Well, we have got a story to tell and we love to share it with others. The first half of April we have been able to continue building upon our story and the last half of April has given us many opportunities to tell our story all over the US from Arkansas, to San Francisco to Florida. We are so grateful to have an amazing story to tell, but we know so well it is not our story…it is God’s story. And what a joy to be a part of God’s Great Story! We are so grateful you too are a part of this amazing God story!

We were blessed to have a wonderful group of young people join us this month for a week at the school. Not only did they fulfill a critical need helping us with our student evaluations, but they completed the expansion of our primary school playground, including a full week of moving 65 cubic meters of sand by HAND. And they spent time ministering to and playing with our kids each day through VBS activity. You are amazing and we are so grateful for you investing your time and resources into our children!! What an impact you have made.
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It was so sad to say goodbye to two incredible volunteers who have been with us since January. You have made such a difference in the kids of PCA and I know they will never forget all of the time you spent with them and all of the love you gave them over these last 3 months. Thank you for giving a part of your lives to us. We will miss you so much! We look forward to seeing you again…soon.IMG_3962






It has been a very fruitful trip so far for PCA. We began with 27 students who needed to be sponsored and by God’s grace we only have 5 left to sponsor with one more week to go. And I cannot even begin to tell of all the wonderful new friends we have made along the way. God is so good. Thank you to all of you who have met with us and newly partnered with us in Changing a Generation in Palacaguina. You are truly making a difference!

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PRAISE GOD!! I will say it again in case you did not hear me, PRAISE GOD!! The Witonski family are officially residents of Nicaragua!! Oh, what a joy! After 16 months of laboring toward residency we have achieved our first year of temporary residency. We will need to renew yearly twice and then we can apply for permanent residency. This is such a major milestone in our call to Nicaragua and one step closer to being fully established in our new home. Thank you so much for your prayers and for all those who have helped us along the way.

We were able to complete the additional structural support for the 1st Grade Classroom. Though unplanned, this was a critical safety project and I am so grateful it is completed. Now, we will be able to move forward on preparing the 2nd grade classroom for next year. Next steps will be the library, completing our existing building and adding two new classrooms to expand our space through 6th grade. We know God is going to continue providing for His school.




As of this update we only have 5 children who need a sponsor. Sponsorship not only covers the cost of education, but also provides a meal each day and ministry programs for the children. If you or someone you know would like to sponsor a child at $40 per month, please let us know or go to our website at www.lovepala.com.

1) Please continue to pray for our US trip. We have one week left and then we return home.
2) Please pray for God to move on our behalf regarding school transportation, land purchases, and business opportunities to help the future of PCA.
3) Please continue to pray for our teachers and staff as they work hard to learn new ways to work with our children and teach them about discipline and values.

What a joy it is to serve beside each of you in God’s call to reach the children and families of Palacaguina with his grace and a life-changing education. All we do through God’s grace would not be possible without you. Thank you for your prayers, your support and everything you do to make this ministry possible. You are truly the wind in our sails and the hands and feet of Christ. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you!

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Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!! (God Bless you from the Witonski family)

The Witonski Family <><

Want more frequent updates, pictures and videos? Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/

Update #2018-04 – Busy busy busy

April 1, 2018

As Americans from the United States, we seem to have great ability to always fill up our days with things to do.  Well, the mission field is certainly no exception or reprieve from that well-developed skill.  The month of March has been insanely busy.  However, we are grateful the Lord has entrusted so many responsibilities to us here in Palacaguina for His kingdom.  We continue to believe in the mission He has given us to Change a Generation and we are extremely grateful for those of you praying for us and allowing God to use you to be a part of it with us.  Together we will accomplish all God has for us here and we will never tire of serving Him!!



2018 Capital Campaign

We are officially kicking off our 2018 Capital Campaign to raise $350,000.  This campaign will complete the known school construction projects so we can begin fully focusing on our programs around ministry and education.  We need to be focusing on how to reach the students and our community with funds and efforts, not on building the school.  So, I ask you, how can you help us reach this goal?  Are you able to give, please give!  Are you able to evangelize and tell others, please tell the story!  Are you able to pray for God to open the doors to meet this need, please pray earnestly!  We know God is able and God can do it through His people.  SO, LET’S BUILD HIS SCHOOL and CHANGE A GENERATION!!


US Trip – Share the Vision

Speaking of our capital campaign, please pray God will open doors and hearts on our fund-raising trip to the states.  From April 11th through May 7th, Brenton will be in the US sharing our vision for the next several years and hopefully inspiring those who hear.  If you are near any of these places, please join him and bring a friend:

  • Thursday, April 12th – The Church at Rock Creek – Man Church – 6pm
  • Saturday, April 14th – The Flying Saucer Event Center Little Rock Rivermarket – 2pm-4pm
  • Sunday, April 15th – Fellowship Bible Church AM Services – 8am-1pm
  • Monday, April 16th – Friday, April 21st – San Francisco, CA
  • Saturday, April 22nd – 26th – Miami, FL – Various Locations and Churches
  • Friday, April 27th – Saturday, May 5th – Titusville, FL – Various Locations and Churches
  • Sunday, May 6th – Conway, AR



We had two groups visit us in March.  We had a group of church leaders visit us from Nebraska.  This was a wonderful visit to share the vision of PCA and all of the amazing things God has done here.  We were also blessed to spend a day with a group of students from the University of South Carolina.  We look forward to seeing this group led by Doug and Dave each year.  Though we only got to see them for one day this time around, it was truly great to see them and we look forward to more opportunities to serve with them in the future.20180316_112753






Our Volunteers continue to make the difference at PCA.  Trying to teach English without native English speakers is super challenging.  Which is why we continue to be grateful for Riley and Hope who are serving with us.  Hope will be returning to the states next month.  We and the children will greatly miss her.  Thankfully, Riley will be continuing with us and a new volunteer, Lexii, will be rejoining us in May.  We have truly missed Lexii and are super excited to have her returning to spend 3 months with us in between her college classes.  Nic will also be rejoining us at the end of April for a few weeks to see the children he fell in love with and who also fell in love with him last year.   If you or someone you know would like to volunteer with us for 3-12 months to teach English in the school, please let us know.  We will need 3 full-time, long-term volunteers next year.Hope









Project Updates

We continue to move forward little-by-little with improvements.  We completed the primary school playground fencing, began structural repairs for the 1st grade classroom and had 5 big trucks of sand delivered for the playground.

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We have completed identifying all children at PCA needing a sponsor this year.  We have 27 children who need a sponsor.  Sponsorship not only covers the cost of education, but also provides a meal each day and ministry programs for the children.  If you or someone you know would like to sponsor a child at $40 per month, please let us know or go to our website at www.lovepala.com.  Thank you for considering/sharing sponsorship opportunities.  We strive to never turn away a child due to financial hardship.

Melanie Liam Kelvin Jireth




  • Please pray for our April fund raising events and meetings in Central Arkansas, California and Florida that God will open doors and we will have a successful event.
  • Please pray for God to move on our behalf regarding school transportation, land purchases, and business opportunities to help the future of PCA.
  • Please continue to pray for our teachers and staff as they work hard to learn new ways to work with our children and teach them about discipline and values.


Personal Update

ANDEE HAS HER RESIDENCY!!!  We were informed Andee has been approved for residency in Nicaragua.  Not sure why just her, but hey, it is a positive step forward.  We go the first week in April to get her residency card!!  Way to go Andee!!  Andee also played her first live piano worship in Church this month.  So proud of her.  Jonah, Lilly and Michael are also doing wonderfully and have so enjoyed all the time with Oma and Opa.  Sadly they had to return to the US, but we will cherish every beautiful moment we spent with them.  We hope more of you are planning to come see us.  It really makes the difference to see friends and family.

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It is truly a pleasure to labor and serve in the beautiful city of Palacaguina, Nicaragua.  Thank you for continuing to partner with us financially and through prayer.  We absolutely would not be able to do all God is calling us to do without your support.  We love each and every one of you and hope you can clearly see the impact you are making directly in the lives of children and families who are in the midst of great poverty.  God’s mission here is opening doors for these children to break the cycle of poverty and make a difference in their community and the world.  We believe God has big dreams for these children and we are so grateful you are a part of making those dreams come true.

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Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!  (God Bless you from the Witonski family)


The Witonski Family <><



Want more frequent updates, pictures and videos?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/

Update #2018-03 – 97 Children, Oh my!

March 2, 2018

It is absolutely amazing to have 97 children starting at Palacaguina Christian Academy this school year.  That is 97 children getting a good meal, being educated, learning English and being taught Christian values and morals every day.  We are so grateful for the opportunity we have to be here, in Palacaguina, working with the wonderful families and children we get to work with.  And we are super thankful for those of you who are partnering with us and supporting the school to make this happen.  God bless you!!  You are making such a difference in the lives of 97 children!!!


1st Day of School

We had our first day of school and it was absolutely refreshing to see (and hug) the children from last year and welcome so many new students.  We are extremely hopeful for all that is in store for this new year.  It is overwhelming how much older the 1st graders look from last year.  They grow so fast.

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20180301_115428 20180208_114757Chapel (Capilla)

Many people ask how we minister to children at PCA.  We have several aspects of ministry at this stage.  One of those is our weekly chapel service.  Every week, there is a time of worship and a Bible Story to teach the children about Christ.  In addition to weekly chapel, we pray every morning with the children during our morning assembly and have a weekly memory verse.  Also, we have several groups who do VBS weeks for the children when they come.  As we grow, we look forward to more opportunities to engage with students and minister to them even more.


Project Updates

Thanks to many of you generously giving in January, we have been able to accomplish many school projects this month.  We were able to: Finish the cafeteria, add 5 sections of fencing, excavate more of the hill to allow for the primary school playground, and complete 2 new bathrooms.  With these improvements we have increased safety and provided an even better school for children to attend.  So wonderful.

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I will be in Central Arkansas this April and I need your help.  We are planning a mid-day event for Saturday, April 14th.  If you are available to help with planning, coordinating, setup or simply inviting others, please reach out to me.  The goal is to see many of you and share the vision of our ministry for the next year and invite many new people to join us in the journey.  If you believe in this ministry and what we are doing to Change a Generation of children in Nicaragua, please plan to attend and invite 1 or 10 others to come with you.  More details to come.




As many of you know, every child who attends PCA needs a sponsor in order to attend the school.  With the level of poverty in Northern Nicaragua, it is just not possible for the majority of our families to afford a good education.  Over the next month, we will be identifying all of our students who still need sponsors for 2018.  If you or someone you know would like to sponsor a child at $40 per month, please let us know.  Sponsorship provides the operational costs of running the school, as well as allows us to provide programs and outreach opportunities for the children.  Thank you for considering/sharing sponsorship opportunities.  We strive to never turn away a child due to financial hardship.


  • Please pray for our April fund raising event in Central Arkansas that God will open doors and we will have a successful event.
  • Please pray for God to move on our behalf regarding school transportation, land purchases, and business opportunities to help the future of PCA.
  • Please continue to pray for our teachers and staff as they work hard to learn new ways to work with our children and teach them about discipline and values.


Personal Update

So happy to report there has been activity in our residency process.  Over the last few weeks, we have had several visits from immigration and we are told they are working on it.  This is fantastic news.  The family is doing great and we are so blessed to have Oma and Opa visiting with us from Arkansas for a whole month.  Everything is going quite well and I would say life is almost normal after a year of adjusting.

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We are overwhelmed each day by the opportunity we have to serve the kingdom in Nicaragua.  The needs are great and the days can be so long and sometimes just plain hard, but we know this ministry is making a difference in the future of these children both spiritually and educationally.  We are so aware none of this would be possible without the army of Brothers and Sisters, true Friends who are making a sacrifice each month to pray and support us.  Thank you for all you continue to do each month to allow us to make a difference and Change a Generation!!  We love you dearly!


Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!  (God Bless you from the Witonski family)


The Witonski Family <><



Want more frequent updates, pictures and videos?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/

Update #2018-02 – PCA: 2018 School Year Begins

February 1, 2018

As we get ready in just a few days to kick off the 2018 Academic school year, I am overwhelmed by the goodness of God and how far we have come in only a year.  Next month, Deborah and the kids mark their one year anniversary of living in Nicaragua.  It has been truly amazing seeing all God is doing and knowing He has only just begun.  I hope you are all as excited as we are to see all God has planned for this year.  We are going to do our best to keep sharing and hope you are as amazed as us with what God can do.  This year as you look for ways to follow God closer, I pray you will hear His voice and see His face more in every detail of your life.


Open House

The PCA open house was a fantastic event.  We were much more prepared than last year, but oh we have so many ways to improve.  I am proud to say we had our handbook and parent agreements ready and the children enjoyed meeting their teachers and seeing their new classrooms.  Many of our children are so excited for school to start.  We have truly missed the kids and it was an indescribable blessing to get so many hugs from these wonderful children.  They have most definitely stolen our hearts.

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This month we saw the arrival of our two new English volunteers for this year.  Riley arrived on the 22nd and will be teaching English in our 1st grade.  Hope arrived on the 25th and will be teaching English in the preschool.  We are so happy to have Riley and Hope joining us this year.  Oh what a difference these two wonderful servants will make.  Please pray for them as they transition into life in Nicaragua and are working hard on preparing for their classes next week.


1st Grade

Speaking of, the first grade class looks incredible.  The desks have arrived, and everything is ready for classes to start.  We have most of our last year Kindergarten students returning and several new students starting with us.  This is going to be an exciting year for PCA.  I know it is only the beginning, but wow the opportunity that lies before us.

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Another Great Partnership

I was extremely blessed to learn this month the Fellowship North Youth Group has chosen us as their missions partners.  We are honored they will be partnering closely with us to bring the Gospel to Palacaguina through a Christ-centered, bi-lingual education.  With a trip this summer in the works to Palacaguina, we look forward to all God has in store for the youth and us.  Welcome to the team and we look forward to meeting each of you!  We love our Fellowship North Family!



Quick update on several projects we have been tackling this month in preparation for the new school year.  We have refreshed paint, added roofing in critical areas, sidewalks for our new entrance and are almost complete with the first third of our kitchen/cafeteria.  These are all very important to complete before school starts and I am so grateful for a year-end gift that made it all possible.  We had no idea how we could get it done, but God called and His children listened.  Thank You!

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Teacher Orientation

In the last update we mentioned a new partnership with a family who would be helping us with professional development.  I am overwhelmed by the amount of work they did to make our first ever teacher orientation and training a success.  I spent two weeks teaching modules on everything from lesson planning and behavioral management to CPR, First Aid and kids YOGA.  It was a great time spent with the teachers and the concepts they learned, I believe, will help us to be even more intentional and successful this year.  We are off to a great start!  I know it will be worth the many 19 hour back-to-back days.

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April Trip

Get Ready, Get Ready, Get Ready!!  Now that our teacher orientation is complete and we are about to kick off our next year, I am going to be focusing heavily on my trip to the states in April.  The trip will be focused on sharing our vision for 2018 and trying to raise support for our $350,000 capital campaign.  I plan to be in Central Arkansas for 6 days and Florida for 14.  We are already booking up quickly and I know God is going to open the doors.  I will be planning a fund raising event in Central Arkansas so please pray about how you can be a part of helping us have a successful event.  I will need help with planning and will be reaching out to many of you very soon.

New Hires

We added several new faces to our team this year.  Our new office assistant is Karina.  She is actually a product of 516Now’s smiling school kids program and a wonderful example of the success and opportunity that await children who receive an education.  We are happy to have Karina joining us.  In addition, we welcome Jorge (Hor-Hey) to our team who will be working as our full-time maintenance resource for the school.  Jorge will also be driving the microbus and helping out all around.  And Abner will be our new English Professor for the school.  Welcome to PCA!!

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ANFDonationANF Donation

Just a few days ago, we received our 3rd donation from the American Nicaragua Foundation.  We received several books, tables & chairs as well as more food for our students.  This has been a wonderful partnership and we hope it will continue for many years to come.





Family Visit

We had an amazing blessing this month getting a family visit.  It was great to spend the week just relaxing and spending time with our loved ones.  We miss everyone so much and when we get moments like these we cherish them.  We are so grateful for the time together.  Thank you Paul and Peggy for blessing us with your visit!

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  • Please continue to pray for our fund raising campaign this year. $350,000 or bust. J
  • Please pray for the transportation needs of the school. We are still investigating what this will require, but we will definitely need the donation of a bus to make this happen.
  • Please pray for a positive school year and that our teachers will be firm and consistent.


Thank you all for your prayers and your support.  I say this every update, but I really mean it when I say we could not do this without those of you who are supporting and praying for us.  We are able to be the hands and feet of Christ on the ground only because of you who are the hands and feet of Christ in sending and supporting us.  We are doing this work together all for the glory of the Lord.  And we are so grateful to be serving with you for the kingdom.  God has shown me that this year is going to be the most challenging, but I know through your prayers and the power of the Holy Spirit, we are going to kick the enemy in the teeth and see what God can do when His people are faithful to follow Him where He leads.  Hope you enjoyed the update, talk to you soon.

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Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!

(God Bless you from the Witonski family)



The Witonski Family <><





Want more frequent updates and pictures?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/


Update #2018-01 – New Year = New Opportunities

January 1, 2018

It is absolutely amazing to look back on 2017 and see all God has done.  It can be overwhelming at times.  But even more amazing is looking forward to 2018 and thinking about all God is going to do.  I am eagerly waiting to see what is possible when we give everything to him.  To see what God can do with our few loaves and fishes.  We may think we have very little or even at times nothing to offer God for His kingdom.  BUT, I am telling you that God can take what you have and where you are and multiply it to perform miracles for His glory.  We pray you will join us this year, again or for the first time, to give God what you have and allow Him to use you mightily to build and advance His kingdom.  Let us stop telling God we have nothing to offer and start giving to God all that we have.  It will change our lives!  This new year is all about new opportunities!!



One of the absolute highlights of December was the Kindergarten graduation.  What a wonderful event.  The Moms raised money all year and did an incredible job.  I gave a closing speech, in Spanish, about the future of these beautiful children.  Reading, but still, it was a great experience and a nice finish to a very successful year at PCA.

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Speaking of a successful year, it has been just that for PCA, a successful year.  Praying for only 20 students, we were blessed on day one to have 65 students attending PCA.  Through the year, this number fluctuated but settled at 66 students who ended the year with us.  What a blessing to have so many children to reach with the gospel of Jesus Christ through a Christian, bi-lingual education.  God is so good.


1st Grade

In 2018, (Feb 5th) we open 1st grade in addition to our 3 Preschool classes.  Through your prayers and generosity, we were able to finish the storage building to make available the classroom and have just finished the flooring.  We will be purchasing the desks next week thanks to a Church in South Carolina and we will finish the gates/doors needed thanks to a dear friends end-of-year gift.  It is amazing to see how we are continually blessed by those who believe in what God is doing here.  We could not do it without you.

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Starting in the 2018 school year, we have designed uniforms and created a small business to make the uniforms for our students.  All profits from the business will go directly back into the school and ministries.  Our goal is to continue finding ways to create businesses that will contribute and support the school financially.  This is a critical goal to increase the long-term sustainability of PCA.  If you are interested in helping us create businesses either financially or with your business knowledge, please let us know.

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IMG_34421st Christmas in Nicaragua

Our first Christmas was…well, different.  Without the norms of the states, we had to be very intentional to maintain the “seasonal” feel.  This is definitely the first December I have ever experienced totally in warmth.  But, we were able to keep many of our family traditions.  Deborah hung the two strands of lights we brought with us, we celebrated Advent each Sunday leading to Christmas and Christmas day was surprisingly normal.  We had our family Christmas breakfast, read Luke 2, opened the few small gifts Deborah brought back from family in the states, watched Christmas movies and celebrated Jesus’s birthday with a cake.  Deborah surprised us all with a scratch made cherry-cheesecake for Jesus’s birthday cake and from scratch egg nog.  I will have to say, it was pretty delicious.  Most importantly we were together as a family!!IMG_3463








A friend was able to have our car repaired fairly inexpensively.  Praise the Lord.  We also have finalized the details for two wonderful servants who will be teaching English with us next year.  I look forward to highlighting both Hope and Riley in our next update.  And Praise God for a wonderful year on the mission field!

Please continue to pray for us in the following areas:

  • Securing a place to live for our English teaching volunteers by January 15th.
  • Our 2018 financial campaign – That God will open hearts and doors to raise the $350,000 we need to completely finish all known building projects.
  • Student sponsorship – we still need several existing students to be sponsored for 2018.
  • A school bus – One of our greatest immediate needs is transportation.



In April 2018 I will be in the states to raise money and awareness for PCA.  I will have 5 days in Central Arkansas and 15 days in Central Florida.  If you have any groups who would like to hear about the school, please let me know.  I am working on an event, or events, in Central Arkansas Fri/Sat April 13th and 14th and will be asking for your help.  If you would be willing to be in charge of a part of the event (venue, decorations, food, donations, etc), please let me know.  It will take many hands to make these events a success.


New Partnering Family

I have a special praise report for a new partnership in December.  I cannot even begin to share all the details, but essentially, a friend called me from a family I have been praying for two years to be a part of what we are doing here.  This family is so precious to me as they are the very reason I am a believer in Christ.  Long story short, this partnership is going to immediately meet two of our greatest intellectual needs we have at the school: 1) Curriculum and student achievement and 2) Professional development of our teachers.  GOD IS SO AMAZING!  The timing is ridiculous.  God does things like this simply because He can and to remind us we can do nothing apart from Him.  Wow!!  I cannot wait to see all God is going to do through this family’s passion and love for Jesus.  We are super blessed!!



Last New Year’s I had just arrived in Palacaguina and I was amazed to see a beautiful fireworks display over the city from our new home.  This year, we were able to enjoy the fireworks as a family as well as a wonderful event at church.  There was food, games and fellowship with all of our friends.  What a great New Years!!

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It has been a wonderful month for the family.  Jonah finally was able to unpack his drums, Deborah is making more murals, Michael got to be Batman, Lilly was reunited with Jonah, Andee got a fun craft at lunch and scorpie showed up on Christmas Day.  I think after a year we are definitely getting into a state of normal.

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We are so blessed to have each of you in our lives and a part of the calling God has given us to Change a Generation for the glory of God’s kingdom.  Thank you for your prayers and your support.  We absolutely could not do what we do without you.  We pray 2018 is the year God uses you to do might things for His kingdom.  Blessings to you and your family as you serve and follow Christ!!


Dios te bendiga de la familia Witonski!!!  (God Bless you from the Witonski family)


The Witonski Family <><

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Want more frequent updates and pictures?  Check out the schools Facebook page at



Update #2017-12 – What an Amazing Year!!

December 1, 2017


This month saw the final day of our first year of school.  The children have only been gone for two days, but I already miss them terribly.  We are grateful to say this first year was a huge success and the Lord accomplished more than we thought possible.  Hoping for only 20, we started the year with 65 students and finished this week with 66.  Even though we have so much to do, preparing for next year, it is good to just reflect on what God has done and enjoy His goodness over our ministry.  Special thanks to all of you who were so critical to our first year.  We look forward to many more years serving together to Change a Generation.

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ANF 2nd Donation


We were extremely blessed with receiving our 2nd ANF donation.  The partnership with the American Nicaragua Foundation has been going so well.  This donation provided much needed teacher’s desks for the classrooms, a huge pallet of new clothes, tables and more food for the children.  We will be distributing the clothes to the community and the furniture is meeting a huge need.  This is truly a wonderful partnership.

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IMG_2801 IMG_2804Financial Conference


As many of you know, I am passionate about budgets and helping others manage their money in a way that honors God.  Some really cool doors have opened for me to use that passion here in the ministry.  This month I had the opportunity to teach more than 40 adults as part of a ministry financial conference.  I taught Biblical principles for managing money and gave practical steps for creating a budget.  What a cool day of ministry.





Meeting Medical Needs


One huge part of our ANF donation this time was wheelchairs and crutches for a local family.   This family was in a major car accident in October which caused 4 adults and 1 child to require wheel chairs.  Not easy to come by for families here, it was a blessing to be able to provide these much needed items.  So grateful to ANF.  God is so good.  After this family is better, we plan to continue loaning these to other families in need.

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516NowBoard516Now Board Visit


What a blessing this month to have 5 members of the 516Now board visit us in Palacaguina.  It was so great to share with three new members of the board the vision we have for Changing a Generation through a Christ-centered, bi-lingual education together.  Thank you to John, Scott, Jim, Alan and Brant for being so committed to changing the world for Christ and for being our closest partners in Changing a Generation in Palacaguina.  We absolutely could not do what we do without you.  We look forward to seeing you soon and often.



IMG_2953Leavin’ On a Jet Plane


One tough moment this month was dropping off Deborah and Jonah at the airport.  Due to a family situation, Deborah needed to return home for a few weeks and Jonah tagged along.  It was sad to see them go, but a wonderful opportunity to see family.  They are having an amazing trip and it just reminds me how much of a sacrifice it is to be away from our family and friends.  We miss you all so much, but know God has us exactly where He wants us.  So we will just enjoy these opportunities when God allows.  Love you and look forward to seeing you soon on my next trip to the states.



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IMG_3010Thanksgiving in Nicaragua


Thanksgiving was a little different for us this year.  While Deborah and Jonah celebrated more traditionally with family in Arkansas, the rest of us had a day of driving and immigration offices.  We had to renew our passport stamps in Managua, so just a normal day.  However, since we were in Managua, we took the opportunity to meet a friend at the mall, enjoy some good ole American food and see a beautiful full model of Jerusalem.  Lilly chose Burger King, Andee and Michael choose pizza and I ate a Quiznos.  All followed by some delicious soft serve.  No, not a turkey with all the fixins, but we were still very thankful for food that was definitely out of the normal and quite yummy.  It was a good day.  Maybe next year we will raise a Turkey.


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IMG_3084School/Construction Updates


In addition to finishing the school year this month, we have been actively preparing for next year.  We are finishing the Bodega (storage building) to allow us to prepare the 1st grade classroom.  We will be tiling the new room in 2 weeks and purchasing the desks the week after.  Registration for next year is going well.  Though we do not officially start registration until today, Dec 1st, we already have 38% of our current students registered to return and 13 new students registered.  Families are eager for their children to attend PCA.  It is such a blessing to have families trusting us with their children and wanting their children to attend PCA.   God is so good to allow us the opportunity to pour into the lives of these beautiful children and families.


Personal Updates (B-Day)


Personally, we are doing great.  Our Spanish tutoring is going well each week.  Love that we are officially learning proper Spanish.  Michael turned 7 this month!  We made some birthday flan and had a wonderful day together.  They are all growing up so fast.  It has been a little rough without Deborah, but we are surviving.  She did a lot to help prepare me for laundry, dinners and all the other necessaries.  So grateful for all she does and super grateful she will be back in another week.  Absolutely could not do all that needs to be done without her.  I am very blessed to have such an amazing woman in my life.  Love you Babe!

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There is so much to do, and we need to share our immediate needs.  But first, I have to give God glory for all He has done.  Last week a wonderful church donated $1,500 which is exactly what we needed to purchase the 1st grade school desks.  What a legacy.  Children will learn every day in the desks they provided.  Thank you.




  • Finish the 1st Grade Classroom – We greatly need $2000 to completely finish the area for 1st
    • Please pray God will meet this need before January so we can get this completed.
  • 2018 Operations Gap – Estimated deficit of $425 per month to be fully funded in January. (Down from $700)
    • Please pray God will continue to touch the hearts of his people to invest monthly in PCA.
  • 2018 Capital Campaign – Goal to raise the rest of the construction expenses (~$300K) to finish the school.
    • Please pray God will raise up a campaign manager(s) to help us accomplish this.

If you have any needs you would like us to pray for, please send requests to bwitonski@gmail.com.




We have one month left in the most incredible year of our lives.  The opportunity to live abroad on the mission field and fulfill the calling God has placed in our lives is amazing.  We pray so much that each of you are feeling that same level of accomplishment and satisfaction in the calling God has given you.  Do not get me wrong, following Christ is so not easy, some days are downright painful, but knowing you are exactly where God has called you to be is ‘priceless’.  If you are partnering with us in any way, please know you are absolutely making a difference in this world for Jesus Christ.  The spiritual ROI (Return on Investment) is huge.  Not only does your dollar go so far to do so much, you are changing the lives of children and their families for generations to come and in many cases for eternity.  Thank you and God Bless!!!


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Dios te bendiga de la familia de Witonski!!!

(God Bless you from the Witonski family)


The Witonski Family <><









Want more frequent updates and pictures?  Check out the schools Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AcademiaCristianaPalacaguina/