Two of the three American missionaries shot to death in Yemen were laid to rest on Tuesday. They were buried on the grounds of the hospital where each had worked for more than 20 years. The tragedy is a reminder of just how dangerous foreign mission work can be.
In a little more than a week a Biloxi couple plans to be ministering in a tiny village in Central America. On January 9th, David and Natalie Atkins will follow their hearts and say good-bye to their four children so 300 other children can learn about Christ. The Atkins will travel thousands of miles away to place where hot water is luxury and their communication skills will be limited.
"Guatemala is a special challenge because I don't speak the language," said Natalie Atkins."It's a country that is outside of my comfort zone, poverty is the way of life down there."
As her church director of children's ministries, Natalie has helped many coast children learn about God. She says God has called on her to also help Guatemalan children come to know Him.
Natalie said "I've always had a special love for children and wanted to see them taken care of and come to see them come to know Jesus as their savior like I do."
Before the attack on missionaries in Yemen the couple says they hadn't considered the dangers of going to a third world country. Now that they have their resolve to teach about Jesus is the same.
"He gave his life so that I could go and be in heaven with God, therefore I don't feel that it's any large burden for me to give my life in return," said David Atkins.
This will be the first foreign missionary trip for Natalie and David Atkins. The two will be in Guatemala teaching vacation bible school for a little more than a week. The Atkins children (Timothy, Rachel, Katherine, and Alicia) all told us they understand and support what their parents are doing.