Greetings from the USA!
The countdown has begun and soon we will be packing our bags to fly south… on July 9th to be exact!
We were pleased to have the opportunity to share in three churches during the month of June: two in Nebraska and one in Colorado. As always, the pastors and their congregations were so loving and hospitable and it was a joy to renew old acquaintances and make new ones.
On a personal note, we spent some enjoyable time doing repairs and remodeling for family this year:
1. At Brent’s house, the wind had left their wooden privacy fence leaning on a tree and a neighbor’s rake. It took a little effort, but we were able to cement new posts in place, repair and reset the fence and even make Paula a grape arbor! (During the process, Jerry did have to go in for 6 stitches in his hand, but that’s a story in itself!)
2. At Mom Whites’ it was time for a new back step, so Jerry and his brother Jeff completed that project.
3. Now the BIG job came as we helped Connie’s sister, Linda and her husband Bill remodel their floral shop in Kearney, NE! We tore down walls, put up walls, sheet rocked, built storage spaces and re-arranged the location of the ‘in-house’ community prayer room, and …cleaned and cleaned and cleaned some more! It was interesting to try to keep the daily business going in the middle of all the mess… taking flower arrangement orders and consulting with brides was a bit tricky.
In Paraguay Pastor Victor and the other staff members kept us updated on the happenings of the church and ministry. Thankfully, this year there has been no great emergencies or very difficult issues to handle. The month of June was rainy and cold, but even so, there were on the average138 in attendance on the wet Sunday mornings. That is… except for the really rainy Sunday when 39 braved the elements! We are proud of the commitment of our loving people even when we are away.
**The Hola Club Children’s Hospital: During the month of June, the ladies visited the hospital weekly as the weather permitted.
Testimonies that Dolia shared:
1. Last month we told you that another hospital guard had ‘believed and received Jesus’. Well, it seems that the Holy Spirit is focusing in on the hospital guards, because Dolia shared that a lady guard approached her at the last visit. The guard said she didn’t want her boss to see her talking to Dolia, but she wanted to pray and receive Jesucristo (Jesus Christ) also…and she did!
2. Dolia was also excited - a Catholic lady, who was also visiting the children that day, began to follow her from bed to bed as she, Dolia, prayed for the children and shared the plan of salvation with the parents. At each bed the Catholic lady would listen and repeat the prayer with the family members, then move on with Dolia. Finally, Dolia was able to take the Catholic lady aside and talk personally with her and with joy she received the salvation that Jesus provided for her!
**Prison Ministry: Last month we shared that two of our main ministry leaders, Pablo and Alfredo, were soon to be released from prison. As of yet, we have not received the release report. Many times the ‘red tape and political $$$ games’ can continue for months and even years, even though they have served their sentence. Please pray for the men and their families as they wait for their freedom. We know that God has a perfect plan for each one. Also, pray that other strong Christian inmates will rise up to fill these areas of leadership and responsibilities. Late Note: we just received word that Carlos, one of our ‘disciples’ from the prison, was released last week and was present in the church service last Sunday, June 30. PTL!
**CEB Bible Institute: Director Marta Segovia reports that the new series of the Introductory Level Classes (the first step in a four year study program) are about to start in four, possibly five locations. Please pray for the new students as well as the teachers. We are training up disciples and leaders to reach out to their nation!
1. The CEB Church celebrated our 16th Anniversary on June 15th! The journey from ‘a Bible study class to a full fledge church’ has been interesting as well as exciting. This growth has taken place in the heart of a very strong Catholic neighborhood, but we can see that by our persistent love and faithfulness, the neighbors are receiving us and the Word!
2. The ‘Love Campaign’: The needs and prayer requests continue to come in as a confused, hungry and suffering world reaches out for help. A second round of visitation, fasting and prayer, intercession for needs and celebrations has been in progress since the month of May. Our pastoral staff reports that the church continues to reach out to their families, friends and neighbors and God is responding. The Celebration of Miracles services will be held on July 13 and 14, the weekend after our return to Paraguay, we are expecting great things!
At our next report, you will find us once again ‘knee deep’ in our activities and projects in Paraguay; may God bless and keep you until we are together again!
**URGENT FINANCIAL NEED: -- The motor went out in our vehicle in March. We have been and will still be without transportation once we arrive back in Paraguay. There are no original repair parts available for this particular motor in Paraguay but we can buy a used, imported motor from Japan that comes with a guarantee– cost approx. $6,000 including installation.
**Please note: you will still be able to reach on our US cell phone until boarding time for our flight from Miami to Asunción on Tuesday, July 9, 8:00 pm.
Blessings – Jerry and Connie.