A week with Steve Bartel

One of the best things about running the children at risk school is having time with the teachers that come to spend a week with us.  We had 4 speakers that flew in from outside of Costa Rica – Janna Moats, Carol Boyd, Steve Bartel and Dave Swann.  With this being our first school it was so encouraging to have these wonderful leaders come and share with us.

Steve Bartel with our family

Steve Bartel with our family

In February Steve came from Colombia.  Steve has been a missionary in Colombia for over 20 years working with “Formando Vidas,” a street kids ministry.  With his wife he has raised four of his own children, adopted two, and had 100’s of former street kids in his home for various periods of time.  When he came to speak, he left his wife in Colombia at home with 8 children in their home, including a baby!   They are such a special couple and have seen so many lives transformed as they follow God’s leading to open their hearts and home.

One night while he was here in Costa Rica we had him over for dinner.  When he arrived for dinner, while we were finishing up the preparations, he went straight into the playroom and laid on the floor with our three boys and started reading them stories!  Our kids, who are generally shy, took to him right away.  It was so cool to see his heart for children and watch him interact with our boys!  He really understands kids.

He talked with us about the possibility of having children in our home someday in the future.  It’s an idea that Scott and I have had on our hearts as a ministry, because we love children so much (in the future – not right now!).  As I start walking more and more into my calling as a mom, I’m realizing the depth of this ministry and the potential to really make an impact in children’s lives.  He invited me to come to Colombia to spend time with his wife, Evie, to shadow her and talk to her about what it takes to be a “ministry mom” and what all that entails.  Our children at risk school is on outreach there so I could visit them also!  It’s something I would truly love to do, so pray with me if this is an opportunity I should take!


7 Responses to A week with Steve Bartel

  1. Lisa says:

    Leslie, What an amazing opportunity!! I’ve long prayed for a “mom ministry mentor”, what an amazing blessing! I hope this is something the Lord provides for you!

  2. Suzanne Witty says:

    I’m John’s mom, and will be keeping Jack while they are with you next week (july
    21-16). I’m wondering whether the Steve Bartel you mention is related to Judy
    Bartel…my freshman college roommate in 1962 at Bethany Bible College in
    Santa Cruz, California. I would love to know her whereabouts and ministry.
    Her parents were missionaries in Bogota, Columbia. Maybe Steve is a brother
    or cousin??? If you get this note, please respond with any info you have about
    Steve’s contact address. Thank you! I will be praying for your work there
    as John & Laura and the team from Tulare First Baptist come to minister with
    your children-at-risk program. God bless you! Suzanne Witty

    • judy "song of praise" says:

      Hi Suzanne!
      Yes, I´m Judy Bartel (now Graner), the MK that was your roommate at Bethany 🙂 Steve Bartel is my brother. I´d love to connect with you. You can write to me at jgraner77@hotmail.com.
      My husband Steve and I are missionaries in Colombia but at present we are in Downey, CA.
      I´ll look forward to hearing from you.

  3. Eric Johnson says:

    Steve Bartel was my 4th grade teacher in 1975-76 in San Diego, CA. He was my favorite school teacher. He shared many stories with all of us about being a missionary in Colombia. my favorite story was the one about having to eat a worm.

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