The Hilliard Institute

The Hilliard Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation offering sensory education programing, experiential learning, and academic research and publishing while also supporting philanthropic initiatives through fundraising and educational training and activities—all under the umbrella of the concept of Educational Wellness

The Hilliard Institute. 4440 Savage Pointe Drive. Franklin, TN 37064

Email Dr. K. Mark Hilliard at mark.hilliardinstitute@gmail.com

or Professor Jessa R. Sexton at thehilliardpress@gmail.com.

Passion, Purpose, and Challenges

by Lori Bumgarner

Last week, I got to witness true passion and the universal desire for purpose. I found myself in the middle of the Amazon jungle gathered with pastors from small villages situated along the vast Amazon River. These pastors have a deep passion for providing care to the forgotten people of the Amazon. Their purpose is to show God’s love to their fellow natives and to share the Gospel, regardless of the challenge or the sacrifice. Through their actions, they let their people know that even though they’re isolated from the rest of the world, they’re not forgotten.

To fulfill this purpose, they traveled by boat, many for days at a time, to the annual  jungle pastors’ conference to learn things they can take back to their villages and their churches. The team I served on also had a long journey to the conference center in the Amazon jungle. We gave up the comforts of home such as air conditioning, hot water, and standard plumbing to teach them. But our sacrifices were unlike the sacrifices I heard of from the pastors and their wives.

Bumgarner presenting with her translator, Harold Pinto

Bumgarner presenting with her translator, Harold Pinto

Through those with the skill for translation, I heard the story of one woman who traveled nearly 36 hours to attend the conference. Her husband had to stay behind in their village to work his other job. She told us of her and her husband’s vision to build a new church in a poor far-away village. When we asked her how far away, she responded in thick Portuguese, “A seven-day boat trip.”

This is no seven-day river cruise on a luxury liner like the ones you see in those “don’t-you-want-my-life?” Instagram posts. She and her husband will soon take this long and treacherous journey in piranha-infested waters, requiring them to leave their grown children, perhaps never to see them again. This is real passion. Real purpose. Real nobility. With real challenges.

Read the rest of Lori's blog post on her trip to the Amazon, plus information on how you can help these pastors and their wives by clicking here

Bumgarner at the book release for her latest Lori was using the profits from SUP: Spiritual Understanding and Prayer on a Stand Up Paddleboard to fund her mission trip; now that this trip is complete, she donates all profits to cover the costs of job search training and more for those served by four local and international non-profits, including Justice and Mercy Amazon. Purchase your copy here. 

Bumgarner at the book release for her latest

Lori was using the profits from SUP: Spiritual Understanding and Prayer on a Stand Up Paddleboard to fund her mission trip; now that this trip is complete, she donates all profits to cover the costs of job search training and more for those served by four local and international non-profits, including Justice and Mercy Amazon. Purchase your copy here