You’ve probably heard in recent news that restrictions are loosening on American travel to Cuba. It’s an important historical step in our decades long relationship with our neighbor to the south. What you may not know is that religious organizations have been free to travel there for years under a general license. If you’ve always been intrigued and curious about the island nation of Cuba, there’s never been a better time to visit. Here are 10 great reasons to take your group to serve in Cuba:
1. They’re our close neighbors.
The island nation of Cuba is only 90 miles south of the southern tip of Florida. It’s just a simple 45 minute flight from Miami and you touch down in the beautiful, historical city of Havana.
2. You can be the change you want to see in the world.
Relations between Cuba and the U.S. have been terribly strained over the last 50 years. You can begin to change things, one relationship at a time.
3. The people are warm and welcoming.
The Cuban people are some of the friendliest in the world. Serving in Jesus’ name makes that connection even stronger, as you interact with folks who have a vibrant hope in Jesus, in spite of difficult circumstances.
4. The culture is unlike anything you’ve probably experienced before.
It goes without saying that Cuba is different. One of our ministry partners is a neurosurgeon by trade. He is as highly trained and educated to the same level as someone from the States. His salary was the equivalent of $23 per month. He couldn’t afford the gas to get to and from his job as a surgeon, so he quit to pursue as many side jobs as he can to provide for his family. These are the types of folks you’ll meet as you interact with this unique culture.
5. The Church is growing, despite obstacles.
Cubans are not permitted to build a church building, but they can have house churches. As the church grows, and pastors are raised up, the number of house churches increases on the island. You’ll meet people who have such a genuine hope in Jesus, and you’ll see how the church has grown despite efforts to the contrary.
6. It’s a beautiful, amazing place.
Cuban culture continues to shine through. Beautiful music, beaches, food and people make it easy to see why Cuba has been an extremely popular travel destination for people from outside the United States. You can’t help but be immersed in the beauty and wonder of Cuba while you’re there.
7. Because you can.
Lifetree Adventures has been bringing groups to Cuba over the last 5 years, and now with restrictions lifted, it’s easier than ever. You will start to see agencies popping up all over the place, trying to take advantage of these changes. Lifetree Adventures has taken the time to develop a strong network in Cuba, so that you and your group can travel there to serve as economically as possible. We’ve taken all the stress out of visas, immigration, charter flights, and the other peculiar details of traveling to Cuba. We’d love to have you along as we seek to support and bless the local churches in Cuba.
8. You have a lot to give.
Your perspective, your heart, your faith. These are all things that you can bring to the people of Cuba. They need help with ministry projects, such as working with kids with disabilities in a local community. You might paint a house church, help with a construction project, or play with kids with special needs. There’s work to do, but there is also relational time and encouragement to be had.
9. You have a lot to receive.
You’ll be amazed at the passion and fervor that the people of Cuba have for God. They have nothing in terms of material possessions, but they serve Him with all they have. Your faith will be
energized, and you’ll come away with a new perspective on your life.
10. You can support and encourage the local ministries.
We are closely connected with many different local church pastors and ministries. They are bolstered and encouraged by our presence, our heart to give, and our resources. Our relationship there gives them a much needed lift to help them continue the hard work of doing ministry as Cubans.
As it becomes easier to travel to Cuba, many Americans will go to “take” and consume. You have an opportunity to give and make a difference. Come by yourself, bring your family, or bring a group. Lifetree Adventures and our expert team of locals in Cuba will make your trip to Cuba smooth, fun, and most-of-all, meaningful. We’d love to have you along on a mission adventure of a lifetime! For more information go to www.lifetreeadventures.com.
Looking forward to serving with you in 2015,
- Jobe Lewis
Director of Lifetree Adventures