Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas from 6:8

Merry Christmas from 6:8 Ministries! Our savior is born and that is a great reason to celebrate. The birth of our Lord Jesus Christ gives us incredible hope, joy, and peace. God is so good and has given us many other reasons to celebrate this year. He continues to use 6:8 Ministries in powerful ways here in Costa Rica. It's an honor to be used by God to strengthen and expand His kingdom here on earth.

I would like to thank all of the people that are 6:8 Ministries. I'm not talking about the board of directors, or the staff families. I'm talking about all of the people that support 6:8 Ministries through their prayers and financial support. Without so many faithful supporters we would not be able to follow His calling. It's these faithful individuals that allow us to be here to continue to bless and reach many people for Christ. These people are the unsung heroes of 6:8 Ministries. It's because of their faithful financial support that we are able to have seven missionary families on the ground here in Costa Rica.

Thanks to God, and thanks to all of you who God has used to build 6:8 Ministries. We are eternally grateful for your generosity, and awestruck with the privilege of serving God through 6:8 Ministries.

Incredibly Thankful,


Thursday, November 4, 2010


Please read this update as we are in urgent need of your prayers and assistance.

Torrential rainfall over the past 72 hours has caused significant flooding and mudslides in and around our area. Last night tragedy struck as mudslides and swollen rivers claimed the lives of 20 people. There are a dozen people still missing and hundreds are left homeless. The rain continues, the ground is saturated, and some areas are being evacuated because the risk of further mudslides. Click here for News Articl
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The 6:8 staff families are safe and relatively unaffected. We are without water, and I've been told that it may be a week before it's on again. However, lack of running water seems trivial in comparison to what some of the families have lost.

A few of the families of Celebration Church Costa Rica have been directly effected. Melba's mother lost her house in a mudslide and other families have experienced minor flooding. We are still trying to asses the extent of the damage and who was effected.
Children being fed former water line

In the midst of all of this tragedy there is hope! We have been given an amazing opportunity to shine the light of Christ into the darkness created by catastrophe. Acts of love shine brightest in the midst of the darkness of despair.

6:8 Ministries and Celebration Church Costa Rica have already begun to take action. Today we helped the serve meals, carry and distribute water, and salvage items from the homes of effected families.

The plan is to focus on providing meals, clothing, and possibly shelter to meet the immediate needs. We also want to help rebuild and repair as many homes as possible.

There are three ways you can helps us help others:

* First - You can pray for the entire situation!

* Second - You can give! We need funding to purchase food, clothing, and building materials.

* Third - You can come help serve. Pray about bringing a mission team to help with the efforts.

Love in Christ,

Spencer Boulter

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

6:8 Update

I love mustard. It's an amazing condiment! The mildly spicy flavor can make even a nasty hot-dog tolerable. It's probably my second favorite condiment, only beaten by Lizano sauce. I also love the parable of the mustard seed and everything it represents. I love that one of the smallest seeds has such great potential!

Jesus teaches that the kingdom of heaven is like a small mustard seed that becomes a tree. Not just any tree, but it grows to be one of the largest trees in the garden. Growing so large that the birds of the air can come and nest in the branches.

In a direct contrast, sitting in my office are two bonsai trees. They are both over ten years old, and neither one of them is more than a foot tall. They are wonderfully manicured and look beautiful. It's work to keep them cutback and under control. Left alone to grow they would become wild and unmanageable. They would become significantly larger. So much so, they would no longer fit in my office.

While bonsai is unnatural, growth is natural. Not only is it natural, but it is also God's plan for His people and His kingdom here on earth. We should always be experiencing growth of some kind in our lives. The challenge is that when things grow they change, and change can be frightening. Often, things that grow become wild and difficult to manage.

We are experiencing tremendous growth. It's almost scary to think about how quickly things are constantly growing and changing! In four short years God has grown the small seeds of an idea into a thriving ministry that is changing the world for Christ in Costa Rica.

One problem is that it is way too easy to say no to growth. We could have tried to keep it small, neat, and manageable, much like one of my bonsai trees. We could keep it simple and look inwardly, striving to keep it small. It wouldn't have been hard to do. All we would have needed to do is ignore the call of God, and resisted the growth He was bringing. However, if we would have done that, we would have missed out on all the blessing of being used by God in such a powerful way.

I've come to believe that a desire to resist growth stems from a fearful, selfish heart. The primary purpose of all Godly growth is to increase our capacity to love and serve others. I'm awed and humbled that God would use 6:8 Ministries to impact so many lives. He has grown us to the point that others have come and find a home and nest in our branches.

Please join us in praying that He will continue to grow His ministry though us. Pray that we will continue to have the courage and conviction to embrace the growth that He brings. Pray that we will have the wisdom to prune the branches that may be stunting the overall growth, and that He would continue to use us to expand and strengthen His kingdom.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


It all started last summer when a mission team came to Alajuelita to serve. Toward the end of the trip one of the young ladies on the mission team had her camera stolen. She had laid it down for a few minutes in the church they where they were working and it was gone! She was frustrated and I was incredibly disappointed and embarrassed.

I did some investigating and figured it was one of two people. I spoke with each of these people and asked them to come clean, return the camera, and ask the young lady for forgiveness. My petitions fell on deaf ears and nothing was resolved.

A year later this same young woman returned to serve. Toward the end of the trip she was approached by a young man, one of the two I had suspected. He was upset and asked if he could speak with her. He went on to confess that he was the one who had stolen her camera. He explained that a year ago he didn't know Jesus. He didn't feel bad and didn't think he needed to ask for forgiveness. However, in the past year he had grown to love Jesus and now he understands why he needs to ask for forgiveness. The young lady forgave the young man and it was a healing experience for both. Then the young man asked if he could some how pay restitution for the lost camera. The young woman simply replied "You are forgiven." While she had lost a camera, she had gained a brother.

The whole experience was a beautiful picture, and excellent reminder of the love and forgiveness found in the body of Christ.


It all started several weeks ago when I received an email from a couple young guys traveling though Central America looking for mission opportunities. They asked if they could come and visit 6:8 Ministries and hang around for a little while. My first reaction was to tell them no, that is not in keeping with the vision and focus of 6:8 Ministries. However, I did not have peace, so I prayed and decided to tell them yes.

Last week I had to make the hard decision to terminate the current director of the men's rehabilitation center. The decision was made due to some spiritual and moral failures on the part of the director. This came unexpected and we were scrambling to try to figure out what to do with the men's center. We have made progress with some of the men in the center and didn't want to have to send them back to the streets.

We asked the young men if they would consider sleeping in the center while we searched for a new director. They agreed! The crazy part is that they both speak Spanish and one of them actually has experience serving in homeless shelters.

Over the past week God has used these young men in a powerful way. First, they have built deep relationships with the men in a very short time. They have been praying and studying God's word together, and since their arrival three men have accepted Christ as their Lord and Savior!

We have also been struggling to keep the men's center financially viable. We have had little success with our fundraising efforts. Within a few days of these young men taking over we received an unsolicited gift to support the men's center. This has caused me to wonder if God has been holding back blessing with the men's center because we had the wrong person leading it.

It's been amazing to watch how God continue to work all things together for good. I'm not really good with math, but I can't imagine the odds on all of this being coincidental. Two strangers looking for opportunities to serve God rolling into town at the perfect time, with the perfect gift set! I'm not sure how long they will be here, but some how I think it's going to be perfect timing.

Through all of this I've been reminded that AMAZING things happen we pray and open ourselves to God's leading. I'm super excited and almost feel invincible! If God is for us than what can stand against us?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Ramblings - Gloria

A member of our church family has passed away. Her name is Gloria. She was disabled and lived in some of the most impoverished conditions you can imagine. She had been coming to church for a while, but had recently found her place in the body of Christ.

It was always a source of conviction and encouragement to see Gloria hobble into church on her crutches each Sunday. Breathing heavy and sweating profusely, she would smile and greet me with a kiss on the cheek. Her chronic asthma and physical disability made it extremely difficult to go anywhere...but the one place she desperately wanted to go was church. She wanted to be near her church family.

God used Gloria to impact many of the lives around her. She had a tremendous impact on the men of the church. They were convicted and rallied together to reach out in love to help. Most of these men struggle to make ends meet for their own families; however together they committed to raise enough money to pay the rent for decent home close to the church. God also used Gloria to impact the mission teams visiting the church. One team conducted a BBQ fundraiser while another cleaned and painted her new home. It was beautiful to watch the body of Christ in action. Selfless acts of love and service for their sister in need.

The day of Gloria's death the mission team visited Gloria. During the visit the mission team prayed that God would heal Gloria and ease her physical suffering. They also prayed that she would like the home they were preparing for her. I doubt any of them thought that God would answer their prayer in such a powerful way.

Later that same day Gloria was taken to hospital because she was having difficulty breathing. Later that night she least physically. The prayers of the mission team had been answered. Gloria left her weak and broken body here on earth, but immediately she was with the God the Father and has no physical pain or suffering. Not only that...but I know she likes the new home Jesus prepared for her...It's perfect!

The next day I had the privilege of attending Gloria's funeral. It was like no funeral I have ever attended. There was upbeat music, balloons, and tons of people from the church. I didn't see anyone weeping, though I did see some tears of joy. Together we worshiped God.Pastor Jorge preached an encouraging message. And then, there was dancing! It was more like a party than a funeral. It was a beautiful celebration! We all knew that our sister Gloria was now in a much better place. I will miss seeing Gloria for now, but it felt selfish to mourn her death.

At one point during the service I leaned over and told Dave "I want my funeral to be like this!", he smiled and agreed. Through it all I've been reminded that because of Christ, death has lost it's sting. He really has turned our mourning into dancing and overcome death with life!

Loving life and death here in Costa Rica,

Love you guys,


Monday, July 5, 2010

Jullian and the Prize

His name is Jullian, he lives in a small home in one of the worst areas of Alajuelita, and he is a winner! It all started a couple weeks ago when a mission team brought down a brand new skateboard to give away. This is a huge gift and I knew it would cause all kinds of problems if I just chose someone to give the skateboard to, so I decided to use it as a prize at youth group.

During youth group I held up the skateboard and showed it to the excited crowd. Eyes got big and applause broke out as I explained that the skateboard was a prize to be given away at youth group next week. It was to be a simple contest. Whoever brought the most friends and could recite the most scriptures from memory would win the prize. Plus, to make it easy to invite friends, we were going to have a pizza party as well.

Friday night rolled around and it was time to give away the prize. I walked out onto the stage and asked "how many of you brought a friend tonight". To my surprise I saw one small hand rise into the air out of crowd of about eighty people. It was Jullian, and he was standing next to the friend he brought. That's it?, I thought to myself, Only one person brought a friend? I was amazed especially since we normally have a few visitors each week with no incentive of winning a prize. I asked Jullian to come forward and we presented him with the new skateboard. He was so proud and grinning ear to ear as he received the prize.

After youth group I asked many of the kids why they didn't try to win the skateboard. They said things like "I knew I wouldn't win, so why try", or "I didn't know it would be so easy". Most were disappointed, shocked, and embarrassed for not trying. It seemed like I was inside a living parable, and Jesus was teaching us all.

Life here in Alajuelita is hard. The poverty stretches beyond the lack of physical wealth. It makes it difficult for people to believe that things will ever get any better. It creates an attitude that causes many to just stop trying. This event has caused me to better understand the culture we are up against.

Please pray for us as we hold out the prize of Jesus Christ. He is the hope of the world, and the only one who can really make things better. He is the greatest prize we could ever win, and it's only requires faith and surrender.

Love in Christ,


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Ramblings - The Church

I would like to start this "Rambling" with a declaration. I LOVE the local "organized" church and everything it represents. Sadly, I see a negative attitude toward "organized" church is spreading among Christians today.

I must confess that I once too had a negative attitude toward the "organized" church. It was easy to pick apart and attack the weaknesses. I doubted the effectiveness and authenticity of the local church. It was this negative attitude that ultimately drove me to Costa Rica. I felt that I could better live out the gospel of Jesus Christ without being tied down to a local "organized" church. I'm happy to say that I was wrong! Now, more than ever, I believe in the direct connection between the local church and life-giving ministry. I've come to believe that an organized local church is the most effective way to truly live out the great commission and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ.

When we moved to Costa Rica we immediately started to build deep relationships the local people. As we fell in love with these people we naturally wanted to share our faith with them. We wanted to baptize and teach them about Christ. We also wanted our friends to experience the beauty of the being connected to the larger body of Christ. This created an obvious challenge for us. How could we really accomplish this alone? We could show them a glimpse of what could be, but our family alone could not provide a complete picture.

God orchestrated it so that I was soon asked to assist with planting a local church. After much prayer I decided to help. After all, it was a great opportunity for our new friends to be part a live-giving church body. I agreed to help from behind the scenes, but didn't want to become overly involved. Looks like God had a different plan!

As the church started I witnessed radical life transformation. The people I loved were finally being baptized, being taught the Bible, sharing in communion, and growing in their faith. For the first time since our arrival in Costa Rica I felt like we were truly carrying out the great commission! Please don't misunderstand me, before we were trying our best to love people like Jesus, but it was incomplete. There was no corporate worship, no communion, no baptisms, and no offerings. There were not any opportunities for people to learn to give of their resources and find the joy of giving. There was very little preaching or teaching. Mostly, it was gifts of love and acts of service by our family. Looking back it was mostly one-sided and almost a selfish approach to ministry. While we were growing by emulating Chris, it was not very effective form of discipleship for those we were trying to love.

Now there is a church full of our closest friends! We worship God together and celebrate communion and baptism. We all give to the church, and in turn we experience the joy of being used by God to help meet the needs of others. We listen to solid biblical preaching, and study God's word together. It's a beautiful experience, and it has caused me to fall madly in love with the "organized" church.

Recently, 6:8 Ministries decided to run most of the mercy ministries (clothes closet, food closet, and free medicines) through the local church. Now it's the local church meeting needs rather than the rich gringos. We have also started to use the local church to host ministry projects such as free medical clinics, ESL classes, and vacation bible school. Soon we decided to use the local church to host a community feeding center. I was blown away by the response from the church, dozens of people coming to serve. Many of these people physically have nothing, but yet they were excited to serve others who have even less than they do.

Therefore, I LOVE the local church and everything it represents! I'm not naive enough to think that our church is perfect. I recognize that the church is sometimes broken, immoral, and unfair...but weren't most of the churches in the New Testament? The church is full of sinners, always has been, and will be until Christ returns. However, rather than bash the church and discard it like a piece of trash; I say we try to build it up. Let's treat it as a priceless treasure. If it's broken let's work to repair it. If it's ugly and dysfunctional let's work to make it beautiful and functional again.

In closing I want to share what excites me most about our local church. Each and every Sunday I get to catch a glimpse of the kingdom of heaven. I worship alongside businessmen, teachers, cripples, widows, beggars, drunks, drug-addicts, prostitutes, and homeless people. We all sing praise the same God. We are all sinners in need of forgiveness. We all celebrate the same savior, and are empowered by the same Holy Spirit. It's a beautiful experience as we are all connected by our love for Christ. We truly are one body, and I'm excited and thankful to be part of it!

Love you guys,

Sunday, April 4, 2010

6:8 Ministries Update: 'The Refuge' Men's Shelter

We are excited to announce that "The Refugio", the new men's rehabilitation center is up and running. We have welcomed our first four residents. Their names are Thomas, Ali, Gerson, and Roymax.

Each of these men appear to have a genuine desire to change. However, we are not so naïve as to think desire alone is sufficient to bring true change. True life-change and rebirth can only be found in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Will-power, self-discipline, and self-confidence are feeble and ineffective in comparison to God's redemptive love. So that is what we are going to try to give them.

The plan is to shower these men with the love, support, and spiritual direction they need. The hope is that they come to truly know Christ, and He will break the life-stealing addictions in their lives. Mauricio (Chichi) is our local Costa Rican overseeing the project. He has already built a great relationship with each of these men. Brian and Amanda Blalock are the 6:8 Missionaries that are coming alongside Mauricio to provide direction, counsel, and support. Together this ministry team will provide daily devotionals, group prayer time, weekly church services, and ongoing accountability.(Click here to check out the Blalock's Blog)

The ministry team has decided to use the word "family" to describe the kind of environment and relationship they intend to have with these men. The intent is that these men will grow together to become a family. As they go through the process of rehabilitation the hope is that they will all become true brothers in Christ.

God is using Brian, Amanda, and Mauricio to produce much fruit. One night after the group bible study Thomas gave his life to Christ! Brian and Amanda led the study and Mauricio led Thomas through the prayer. Ali has found gainful employment as a taxi driver, which explains a lot about the taxis in Costa Rica. Trust me, if you have ever ridden in a taxi here you know what I'm talking about! Plus, Roymax and Thomas have upcoming job interviews! All the men are making progress in their sobriety, and are truly becoming brothers in Christ!

Please join us in celebrating what God is doing in and through 6:8 Ministries. I'm incredibly excited about the life-change God is bringing though this ministry. I also ask that you would pray for my new brothers Thomas, Ali, Gerson, and Roymax. Also, pray that God will continue to provide funding for "El Refugio" to stay in operation for years to come.

Love in Christ,


Saturday, March 27, 2010

6:8 Update - The Refuge Feeding Center

We wanted to send you a quick update on how God is using the "Refuge - Feeding Center". As many of you know last November we felt led to start a feeding center ministry here in Alajuelita. The purpose of this ministry is to reach the homeless population with the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have called this ministry "The Refuge" feeding center.

Feeding Center

The feeding center currently feeds three days a week. However, we are hoping that God allows us to expand to five days a week. This ministry is about much more than feeding the homeless. It's about loving the unloved, and bringing hope to the hopeless. Before every meal the Gospel of Christ is preached. There is also time for individuals to share their struggles and receive prayer. The 6:8 staff and local volunteers try to love and encourage these "least of these". Each of these men and women are warmly greeted with a hug and kiss; and because the center operates out of the new Celebration Church plant, we are getting many of these men and women plugged into a local church body where they can grow in their new found faith.

So far the ministry has been funded primarily by Mason Community Church, along with some start-up funds given by Cross Creek Church. It's only because of the generous support of these churches that were able to start and maintain this ministry. However, now we are calling out to the 6:8 body of Christ to help us grow and expand this ministry. One way we want to expand is by partnering with another local church to operate a children's feeding program. Please prayerfully consider if God is calling you to join with us in this exciting ministry.

In closing, here are a couple links where you can download a few photos of some of the people who come to the center (Page 1, Page 2). We ask that you would try to pray for each of them. Pray that they will come to have a deep faith in Jesus Christ, and that through this relationship they will be able to overcome their life stealing addictions.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Come As You Are

Crack kids, track kids, hookers and robbers
The naked and hungry, mothers and fathers
Abuses, excuses, and guns in your hands
And I even welcome the arrogant man
I welcome you all to the biggest of feasts
A night of no shame
To pause and to breathe
This is a night of love’s renovation
A feast I am sure that could change a whole nation


Odds are, these people will never beat the crack and alcohol. But their lives can still be changed. The meal is open to anyone, but it isn’t technically free. Price of admission is hearing from God’s word first. But I step back and wonder, which act is more beneficial. For some reason, I’m leaning towards the food.

Feeding Center

This post was written by Cody. You can see Cody's original post here and see his blog here.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Ramblings - The Invitation


His name is Emanuel. He is eight years old, and he is my new friend. I met him just a little over a month ago. I was in the park with the mission team doing outreach ministries. One of the team members, named Derek, had brought an old baseball and glove. He started to play catch with this little boy who was hanging out in the park. After a short time, I had the opportunity to take over for him, as he went to join the group to pray for different people in the park.

It was soon time for the team to head back to the team house for dinner. As we prepared to leave the boy ran up to me with the glove and ball in hand. He asked me to please give the ball and glove back to the nice gringo man. I found Derek and helped him explain to the boy that is was a gift. The boys eyes grew wide with excitement as he hugged and thanked Derek. We handed Emanuel an invitation to come to church the next day. We walked off feeling good about the joy God allowed us to bring to this little boy.

The next morning Emanuel and his mother came to church. Emanuel was still carrying his glove, and we played catch a little bit before church started. During the church service an invitation was given for those who would like to receive Christ as their Lord and Savior. Guess who made a public profession...Emanuel and his mother!

Since then our relationship has grown. We found out that Emanuel and his mother are practically homeless. They have been eating in the feeding center and we were able to help with all of Emanuel's school uniforms and supplies. Emanuel only comes to the feeding center on days that don't conflict with his school schedule... but when he comes, he brings his ball and glove and we play catch.

It's amazing that something as simple as playing catch and handing someone an invitation can lead to two people giving their lives to Christ. God can use anything and everything to call His people to Himself. However, He wants to use us. He has commissioned us to preach the gospel, teaching them everything He has taught us and baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Imagine if we would have left without giving the invitation. While he would have been happy about his new ball and glove and may have been content with one memorable day...but he would still be empty. They probably would not have come to church. They probably would not have heard the gospel preached. They probably would not have been given the chance accept and profess faith in Christ. They would still be empty and dead in sin.

I don't want to get into a big theological debate about predestination or election. I'm just saying that without the invitation it wouldn't of happened the way it did. We (Derek and I) would have missed an opportunity and would not have been able to celebrate and experience the joy we have found in being used by God with the situation.

So I guess I've been reminded that we are called to unashamedly preach the gospel at all times in everything we do. While we shouldn't beat people over the head with the Bible, or guilt them into a relationship with Christ. We should do everything we can to teach them the gospel and help them get plugged into a local body of Christ. So let's be bold and tell the world about Jesus.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

We Need You!! - 6:8 February Newsletter

We are expecting God to do amazing thing through 6:8 Ministries in the coming year. We currently have reservations to host 32 mission teams in Costa Rica. Through these mission teams many lives will be changed, and this community will continue to be transformed. So far these teams have committed to build eight new homes. There are also plans to build a playground, paint schools, run soccer camps, lead vacation Bible schools, and there is even talk of a team building a new skate park! It amazes me how God uses these mission teams to strengthen and expand His kingdom.

However, hosting short term mission teams is only part of what God is doing through 6:8 Ministries. We have several ongoing ministries that allow us to minister to the people of Costa Rica. We have a child sponsorship, and micro-businesses ministry, and last year God called us to help plant a church here in Alajuelita. The church is thriving and many lives are being transformed.

A few months ago God called us to start a feeding center in the church. This allows us to meet both physical and spiritual needs within the church body. Now we are planning to open a men's shelter to provide social and spiritual rehabilitation.

Bunks and Lockers

Amazingly, both of these new ministries are directed by local Costa Ricans. 6:8 Ministries is actively involved through providing resources, oversight, direction, and accountability. However, we believe it's best to allow locals to use their gifts to serve and grow in their faith. Furthermore, the local "church" needs to learn to rise to the challenge of ministering to local needs. We believe this to be the best model to have a lasting impact on the community.

So where do you fit into the picture? How can you help?

We need prayer and lots of it! Please try to remember to pray for 6:8 Ministries and the missionaries on the ground in Costa Rica. Pray that God will continue to use us to change-lives.

Furthermore, each of these ministries costs money, combined around $2,000 a month. Therefore, we are asking each of you to prayerfully consider giving financially to 6:8 Ministries. Your gift will allow us to continue to fund these ongoing ministries. (FYI - 100% of your gift will be used for ministry. None of our missionary staff are compensated in any way. We require each of our staff to raise 100% their own support.)

I'm guessing that about 750 people will open this email. If each person that opened this email would commit to give $3 a month we would have more than enough to fund both of these ministries! To break it down...for less cost than a trip to Starbucks you can be certain that these ministries will continue to change lives in Alajuelita.

Maria Abigail / Jose Antonio Update

I'm happy to announce that Maria Abigail and Jose Antonio have been moved into their new home. The family is busy getting settled.

A heartfelt thank you to all of you who made this move possible. This special family has endured more hardship than most of us could ever imagine. Now they are in a new home, close to a great school, and within walking distance of an awesome church!!!

Maria Abigail has started counseling and seems to be doing well. However, Maria's mother is struggling with night terrors and anxiety attacks.

The uncle that raped Maria is still in jail, but his temporary release is rapidly approaching.

Jose Antonio continues to improve physically and mentally. During my last visit Jose greeted me by running up to me, squeezing my leg and as clear as day said "Hola"! Not bad for a kid who doctors said would never walk or talk.

Praise God for the transforming power of prayer! God is doing amazing things in and
through this family. Please continue to lift them up in prayer.