Raising Up Timothys
Greetings from Peru where we continue in quarantine for the fifth month straight! The quarantine which began here with only essential outings allowed and a nightly curfew was loosened a bit in July but brought back in full force in our area for the month of August. We are seeing more people we know and serve with become infected and the health care system here is overwhelmed. Travel is restricted and there is no mail service going in or out. We have spent more than 150 days in quarantine and are praying for the virus spread to be detained here in Peru. Please continue to pray for our safety and sanity!
Raising up Timothys!
Although it has been difficult to get out and about our ministry here has continued in many ways. As you know we have been working with a pastoral intern this year who recently graduated from the Bible Seminary we work with in Urubamba. Since March our original plans had to be modified but the food distribution project provided ample opportunities for Juan José to continue gaining experience. First, in evangelism throughout the project as the church leadership took turns sharing the gospel over the loud speaker and also in holding one-on-one Bible studies with those interested. We have continued reading through some pastoral books and having virtual discipleship meetings, as well as studying through a Bible Doctrines class with the deacons. Juan José has also been preaching through a sermon series on Thessalonians every Sunday night in our online service. Please continue to pray for God’s leading in Juan José’s life concerning future ministry opportunities.
Through God’s leading another one of our church leaders expressed the desire to further his seminary pastoral studies and we have added him to the pastoral internship program. He and his wife have a desire to serve the Lord. He also actively served in the organization and completion of the food distribution project, faithfully preaching and sharing the gospel. Please pray for Wilbert and his wife, Lois, as God leads them.
Baskets of Love
We are extremely grateful to all who sent in offerings for the distribution of the baskets of love. We were able to distribute over 5,000 bags of food here at the church with follow-up contact information for many. We are in the process of contacting over 1,000 names and numbers who said they were interested in receiving a free Bible study from the church. As of right now we have distributed over 70 studies and are excited to see people working on their “homework” and returning to the church to study the Bible more. A large group of deaf men and women also came to receive food and Eric was able to use some of the sign language he learned to witness to them. We are thankful for two other men who also helped in this area. Now Eric is taking a sign language class on Saturdays to brush up on his skills. Please pray for these follow-up efforts as we have had to close access to the church during this month. Also pray for the salvation of those who have heard the gospel preached during the distribution time.
When we first began distributing food, we took larger portions to our closest neighbors. Eric offered our next-door neighbors one of the free Bible studies and they began a six-week study called “Who is Jesus Christ?”. We praise God that the mother and both of her daughters received Christ as Savior and are now being disciples separately by three of our church ladies! It is so refreshing to see members “teaching others also”. Please pray for the spiritual growth of Yolanda, Aracely and Adriana.
Continuing to strive for the faith
The church’s 46th anniversary is coming up at the end of the month. We are planning a virtual service since we will still be under quarantine. We have also had to cancel our annual meeting until we are allowed to have social gatherings again. Please pray for everything that reopening the church will entail in the future. Until then we are continuing our virtual ministries of preaching and teaching the Word, holding online prayer meetings, discipling virtually as well as doing counseling and leadership training through online platforms. This requires a different style of preparation and we ask for prayer to continue fighting the good fight as God continues opening doors of service to Him!
Eric and Casandra Pardine
Joshua, Steven, Gabriela and Judah