Equipping Young People for Christian Service and Leadership
Equipping Young People for Christian Service and Leadership



Icthus is a life changing ministry for young people.  It is a scout-like club program which builds Christian character and promotes active learning among children and youth in Latin America and beyond!


"Bring up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not turn from it."  Proverbs 22:6

Don Weisbrod top center, Gilo Mendez bottom left, Samuel Mejia, Left, Jose Saguil bottom right, Marco Palacios bottom center. First Icthus leaders in El Progreso, Guatemala 1964. I'm in the top center
Today, July 20th, Icthus is 52!
This day in 1964 in Guatemala, missionary John Shackelford challenged me with a mission - to serve the Lord by developing a program for kids using my Boy Scout and Sunday school experience.  The Lord has sustained that challenge all these years.
Today, I'm thinking back on all the many people who made this ministry possible.  The Lord brought together a wonderful team of missionaries and Guatemalans to join John and me - Tom Gyori, Bob & Bernice Thorp, Gilo Mendez, Norma Yolanda Franco Kruger, and many others. 
And the Lord has extended Icthus beyond our imagination - and today even further.   It's quite an experience reflecting back over 52 years.  It's amazing how the Lord drew so many people together so that young people can be guided towards a better life.
I'm grateful to all who have been partners in the Icthus team - thank you for helping to extend this ministry to so many young people - more than 100,000.
Thank you and Lord bless you,
Don Weisbrod
President & Co-founder


Click the link below to view the Icthus brochure - Information Sheet.  You can download it and print double sided in landscape to share this ministry with others.  Icthus Brochure.



Icthus Camping

Each year I encourage Icthus Friends to join me in giving camperships. It makes a huge impact in the lives of young people.  Our national leaders do such a wonderful job organizing camps that help young people to grow physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually.  ...See more...


Who works behind-the-scenes to train Icthus guides?  Who prepares those who work with the young people every week to guide them?  


Click here to find out.

Starting Icthus in New Churches

Maria Rosario from Honduras

Maria Rosario Millares, who helps her husband pastor the Living Love church in Cholutca, Honduras just completed her first Icthus training.

She said, “This is just what we were praying for. We didn’t have dynamic or innovative things to do with our kids that would reinforce the Word of God in their hearts.  But now we do.  And we can reach more kids in this city.

“Satan fights to damage, trap and get kids away from church.  But, with attractive strategies, like the ones Icthus uses, we can transform the lives of our kids, and also support the transformation of our society. We believe it will be so!”

Celebrating Our 51st Birthday

In many places Icthus groups in Latin America and also here in the US celebrated the 51st Anniversary of Icthus with cakes, campfires, singing, games and stories.  Here are pictures of groups in Chile, Mexico, and Nicaragua.  Click on a picture to start the slide show.

Mateo's Incredible Story

Mateo, was born in 1963 in Masaya, Nicaragua.  When he was a kid he decided he was going to become a pastor.  At age 13 his brother gave him an Icthus manual someone else had given him.  His pastor motivated him to start work with the kids in the neighborhood around the church.  So without training Mateo rounded up the kids and started one of the first Icthus groups in Nicaragua.  At the age of 13 he was and still is the youngest Icthus guide on record. 


However, the situation was turning bad in Nicaragua in 1977.  A revolution against a dictator had ...  Click here to read the rest of Mateo's story

Icthus Betania in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. They have 4 Icthus groups: Pececitos 4-6 years, Heroes 7-9, Legion 10-13, and Youth 14-17
Geannina and her children after an Icthus ceremony in Costa Rica.



When Geannina Briancesco was a little girl she joined an Icthus group in San Jose, Costa Rica – that was 24 years ago.  She enjoyed the weekly meetings, camps and service projects, and loved her Icthus guides.  In a letter, she wrote, “I have so many wonderful memories.  


Imagine her joy when her children were able to join Icthus to...  (see the rest of this story)

Pat Rickon center with Chileans Deysi Cuevas and Sandra Fritz (L to R) Deysi started icthus in Chile. Spring 2014



It was just three weeks ago that I visited with Pat Rickon at the 50th celebration at the San Diego First Presbyterian Church (see below).   She was so full of enthusiasm for Icthus, just as she has been for more than 30 years...


read more by clicking here


50th Celebration at the San Diego First Presbyterian Church

by Don Weisbrod


The celebration at Frist Presbyterian in San Diego on September 13 and 14 was a wonderful event.  Pastor Jerry Andrews had me share at three services, the adult Sunday school class, and a luncheon... 


click here to read more and see pictures



For us celebrating means:

Remembering: What the Lord has done through the Icthus Family – people like you.

Delighting: In what the Lord is doing today through Icthus to improve the lives of young people.

Commiting: To follow the Lord in creating and implementing new ideas for the future.


Early Icthus Kids wearing the first Icthus uniform. Guatemala 1965



See pictures and discover how Icthus began.  Clicking here.


To see what Icthus is doing today check out the rest of our website.

The first Icthus Camp

Plan for an early Icthus tent

It was 1964.  I was 21 years old with just a smattering of Spanish when I began to develop the first Icthus group in the small town of El Progreso, Guatemala.  One thing I wanted was for the kids to have a camp experience.    No one could afford a tent and probably none existed in town... continue...

In Memory of John Shackelford

John Shackelford, mentor, co-founder and long-time supporter of Icthus went to be with the Lord on Saturday March 29th, 2014. 


God used John to challenge Don Weisbrod to start the Icthus ministry 50 years ago.  Over the years he has played a crucial role in Icthus and mentoring many Icthus leaders from Latin America.  John was also a pioneer of Christian camps in Latin America.  Not only did John found a Christian camp and program model in Guatemala that helped to start similar programs in other countries.  Because of his strong belief in camping to help children grow spiritually, memorial gifts given in John's memory will be used to provide camperships for poorer Icthus children.


Click Here for pictures and testimonies on John.


Click here to see what John and Don Weisbbrod said about starting Icthus


To give a memorial gift in honor John and his legacy of helping children click below: 



Enable Children to experience Icthus for the first time!


The ministry of Icthus depends on a many people who donate their time, resources and ideas because they believe in the power ministry to young poeple.


Click to learn about creative ideas for being invoved and helping more children have.


Gifts to Icthus are tax deductible according to IRS regulations. We are members of and subscribe to the high standards of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.


P.O. Box  94055, Pasadena CA 91109     Telephone: (626)720-8111   
Email: Don@IcthusKids.org


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The Icthus Newsletter 



EMAIL: Don@IcthusKids.org



Icthus International

PO Box 306

Lake Forest, CA 92609

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