Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | February 5, 2011

The Mustang Boys

Jerry and Susan Smith | Mongolia

Sixteen years ago, my dear friend Jerry Smith and I met at Bear Creek Park in Houston for our evening walk and accountability talk. At that time, Jerry was looking forward to traveling to the island of Hainan in the South China Sea and to visiting the city of Tianyahaijiao, traditionally known as “The End of the Earth.” However, due to some political saber-rattling between China and Taiwan, Jerry and his team were denied the necessary visas for travel to Hainan. However, when the door to Hainan closed, God opened a door for Jerry to travel to Mongolia. On the particular night that Jerry and I talked about all of this at Bear Creek Park, Jerry was struggling with whether to accept the invitation to accompany a church-planting team to Mongolia. We talked about how God had closed one door for the Apostle Paul while on his second missionary journey and redirected him to Troas on the western shore of Asia Minor (Acts 16). It was there that Paul had a vision of a Macedonian man standing and earnestly appealing for help. By the time we finished our two-mile walk, we had concluded that God had closed the door to Hainan because he wanted for Jerry to go to Mongolia.

After his initial trip to Mongolia, Jerry and I talked again. Jerry told me that he was going to return to Mongolia alone and spend a month there seeking God’s direction for his life and ministry. While on his second journey to Mongolia, Jerry learned about the plight of Mongolia’s sewer kids — runaways, throwaways, and orphans who survive Mongolia’s harsh winters by living in the sewers below the streets of Ulaanbaatar, the capital and largest city in Mongolia. When Jerry returned to Houston, he was convinced that God was calling him to address the needs of the sewer kids. So, Jerry and his wife Susan moved to Mongolia and started caring for these children. Over the past sixteen years they have rescued and housed Mongolia’s runaway and throwaway kids. Jerry and Susan have also established infant nutrition centers that have saved the lives of hundreds of babies and also opened the first center for special needs kids. And they have helped Mongolian nomads make it through several of Mongolia’s zuds (extremely severe winters) by providing food for nomads and their livestock. Jerry has led hundreds of Mongols to faith in Christ and started several churches. Both Jerry and Susan have received the highest humanitarian recognitions that the government of Mongolia gives to civilians who have contributed to the betterment of the country.

Years ago, Jerry started a special ministry to boys rescued from the streets. He calls these boys his Mustang boys. The Mustangs are trained in spiritual disciplines and have also received recognition for their skills in search and rescue. I have known most of these boys since the day Jerry rescued or received them into his care. It has been a blessing to see these boys come to faith in Christ, excel academically, and accept responsibility for the future of their own country. Last night, I had the opportunity to reconnect with four of the boys who are in Houston for a brief visit. They are the fruit of Jerry and Susan’s ministry and validate that Jerry made the right decision to go to Mongolia sixteen years ago. The Mustang Boys are now taking ownership of the good work that Jerry started in Mongolia. I believe that the future of God’s work in Mongolia will be brighter because of Jerry and Susan and their good work with the Mustang Boys. I encourage you to learn more about Jerry’s ministry at his Change the World/LifeQwest Mongolia website.


  1. Omar,

    While in Mongolia with a humanitarian team with a majority medical demographic from Baylor Hospital, we drained the knee abscess of one of the Mustang Boys in one of the three gher which they had set up for us alongside the river. These traditional structures of the nomads of the steppes presented as our “medical complex” with a triage area in front, two busy clinics and a pharmacy with a flank dispensary for glasses.

    Two days later, this same young man assisted in taking down the gher and loading them onto a truck. These young men worked incredibly hard and showed tremendous spirit and discipline.

    Mr. and Mrs. Smith provide a marvelous humanitarian conduit into Darkhan, Mongolia with the many teams they host who bring medical care, and building construction expertise, and even teams who make home visits for elder care.

    God Bless the Mustang Boys! They will provide future leadership in their city.

    Tammy Swofford

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