Our Legacy of Hope

Amor's mission remains the same. We believe that God has called us to keep families together. As we carry out this mission, we realize that building a house doesn't just provide shelter. It builds a foundation for the future.



Our Vision

Our very name means love. We choose to show God's love through simple, tangible acts of service.  Amor demonstrates to the poor the same grace we have all received through Jesus. Our mission statement is:

Amor brings people together to provide transformational experiences that manifest the justice, kindness, and humility of Jesus Christ.


Serving the poorest families through life-changing mission trips

When Amor Ministries began in 1980, the poorest families sent their children away to orphanages because they could not provide for them. Rather than being full of children without parents, orphanages cared for kids whose parents loved them so much, that they were sent away to provide for their general needs. After learning this Amor’s Founders’ decided to change it. So, for the last thirty three years, Amor Ministries’ main purpose was and continues to be to provide adequate housing for needy families in order to keep families together! Amor Ministries does more than just make life easier for a family in need, we open hearts to truly see the grace and love of Jesus by providing security, safety, and stability.



Baja California and Puerto Peñasco

Amor started its ministry in 1980 by building with families in need in Mexico.  The need there is still great and Amor will always be there to serve the people.  We believe that Mexico is our neighbor and we know that we are called to love our neighbors.



South Africa


South Africa is a beautiful country that has seen much tragedy.  When you serve with us South Africa not only will you help bring restoration to the families you serve, but you will be a part of continuing the process of healing and restoration throughout the whole country.



Our Strategy

Amor meets the tangible needs of the poor as a vehicle to share the love of Jesus with families and keep them together.  We do this by providing homes, as well as food, clothing, backpacks filled with school supplies, Christmas presents, winter relief items like blankets and jackets, and water filters.

We believe in working with the local pastors that live and serve in the communities we build in.  Pastors of local congregations in each Amor location provide Amor with an awareness of the spiritual, social, cultural, and economic realities that influence their communities.  These Pastors locate and evaluate potential Amor home recipients and help us prioritize the placement of Amor Mission Trip participants.  The best part is that once your Amor Mission Trip is completed, these Pastors will continue to visit the family you served building a relationship to teach them about the love of Christ.  The local pastors are our Ministry Planning Board, whether in Mexico or South Africa.

Amor Ministries is effective because of our highly interactive partnerships with local pastors in each Amor location, our Ministry Planning Boards, our National Advisory Board, and our Amor Mission Trip participants.  We all share a common vision and purpose for building God's kingdom.


Our Story

More than thirty years ago, Gayla Cooper felt reluctant to spend even one day ministering to children in a Tijuana orphanage.  However, after meeting a group of children from a Mexican orphanage, Gayla's heart was touched so deeply that she decided to pack her bags and move to Mexico to work in the orphanage full-time.

Meanwhile, Scott Congdon traveled to the very same orphanage with a community service group from his college.  The children had such a profound impact on Scott, that when he returned home, he began collecting food and clothing for the children, returning to deliver the collected items.

Together, Scott and Gayla soon discovered that they shared the same dream of ministering to the poor in Mexico.  In March of 1980, Scott and Gayla founded Amor Ministries.  That fall, they recruited their first ministry group to participate in a building project at a Tecate orphanage.

One year later, Scott and Gayla were married and four more missions teams traveled to Mexico with Amor.  The Ministry continues to live out the Congdon’s initial calling and provides homes for families each day.  Today, more than 300 missions groups take part each year in short-term Mission Trips with Amor Ministries!

Scott and Gayla, along with the full-time Amor Team, carry out their commitment and passion for helping the poorest of the poor in Mexico, as well as, South Africa and the United States. They mobilize volunteers and work with local churches to respond to the physical and spiritual poverty throughout the world.