Greetings from Paraguay!
March indeed overflowed with blessings…just as we were expecting! The leaders of the CEB Church decided that it was time to start the construction on the church floor… continuing as long as the monies set aside for the project lasted. Five men were hired - (the boss was a former Bible Institute graduate - to start ‘Phase One’ of the project; they worked under the management of Jerry. (‘Phase One’ includes the foundation, the risers for seating and the entrances.) Due to the cost of materials and the labor, the funds lasted just over two weeks. On the following Sunday morning, Pastor Victor led the congregation in asking God for His abundant supply as he took the offering. We are proud to say that the church families listened to the Holy Spirit and gave as each one was able. To our joy, enough offerings came in to continue the work for another week. Yet another Sunday passed… and the ‘construction account’ continued to pay the workers and buy the needed materials. We are proud to say that phase one is completed and the bills are paid. What a faithful and good God we serve!
That will not be the end of the construction! Phase Two includes the pouring of the main church sub-floor, hand rails and entrance canopies; our goal is also to do the electrical work which includes lighting, fans, sound booth… the whole ball of wax! Phase Three will be the laying of ceramic tile. After that, we would like to eventually enclose the open structure with walls… yes, real walls!
**The Hola Club Children’s Hospital:
During the month of March, we visited the Children’s Hospital 5 times, sharing and praying with 419 parents and children, with 154 people choosing to pray the prayer of salvation!
Remember the testimony of the two fathers that wept when they received Jesus? That day, one of the fathers declared to Pastor Bette that “three of us came to the hospital… three of us will leave”. It has been two long months, but the father of ‘3 year old Alejandro Nicolas’ is praising God! He reported that the two brain tumors have disappeared and the ‘three of them are going home!’ On their last day, Pastor Bette found Alejandro’s father preaching to other parents and helped to lead them in the prayer of salvation!
Dolia shared that one week she entered into a hospital room to find a 14 year old girl staring off into space. Her mother was very concerned that the young lady was not responding to anyone or the medicines. The mother continued telling Dolia that her daughter had given birth to a baby 6 months earlier, but since then she had sunk into this deep depression. Dolia share Jesus with the mother and then prayed for the young girl. The next week, Dolia found the young girl bright eyed and alert. She willingly listened and prayed with Dolia, just as her mother had. As Dolia was leaving, the young mother asked to have one of the little bears for her baby… “the one that says ‘God Loves You!”
It is very rare, but once in a while we encounter a person that has never heard the Name of Jesus. Pastor Bette spoke with a young indigenous mother, from the interior of Paraguay, that only spoke in the Guarani language. She was amazed to hear the story of Jesus for the first time and was very pleased to pray the prayer of salvation.
Join us in thanking God for his incredible faithfulness! Keep praying for the Hola Club… we make an awesome team!
**CEB Bible Institute:
During the month of March, we were able to pass out 8 (eight) certificates and Bibles to the students completing the 3-year basic Bible Study Program! In the home office, 16 students finished the Introductory Level of studies and have just begun the second year of the Bible Institute, which is the First Level of classes.
Join us in praying for the graduates that have faithfully completed the course. Pray that they will rise-up and put the knowledge that they have received to use.
Pray for the new students, that they will develop a hunger and thirst for the Word. Pray that they will be faithful in attending the weekly classes.
**CFC Prison Ministry:
Marino, a former prisoner, asked Pastor Victor to accompany him to his home in the interior of the country to ‘preach’ to his family and friends. They traveled 4 hours by bus to minister for an hour to the group of people that had gathered. Because of their sacrifice, 30 - people (family and friends of Marino) chose to receive Jesus! After enjoying a supper with the family, once again Pastor Victor boarded the bus for the 4-hour trip home… arriving about 4-AM. Marino stayed to encourage the new ‘brothers in Christ’ and celebrate the birthday of his father!
Join us in thanking God for the salvations and in lifting up the new believers in prayer, that they will continue to grow in God’s love.
• A bus stop is located on the main highway, about half a block from our church property. Nearly every Sunday morning Leticia and her children come all but running to the church smiling from ear to ear. Leticia says that she can ‘sense the presence of the Lord’ filling the air as she steps off the bus… that’s the reason for the expectant joy, as they hurry in!
Pray with us that the presence of the Lord so fills the atmosphere around the CEB Church, that people getting off the busses, those walking by, as well as those that are driving past our location, will be drawn in to learn of our Lord and Savior!
• Miguel and Celeste invited one of their new neighbors, Elsie, to come to church. The following Sunday Elsie and her 14-year-old son, Matias, came as visitors. The following Sunday morning, Elsie’s husband, José, was present also. During that evening service, we found the new family working side by side with Miguel and Celeste. We thank God that the ‘CEB Church family’ is reaching out with such love that our visitors at once feel at home, and they want to be a part of what is happening!
• The Children’s Puppet Team had their first presentation, showing their parents some of the techniques that they have learned, afterwards, presenting two short songs. They did a great job… with lots to learn as they progress!
We ask you to believe with us for the completion of the following next phases of construction:
1. Phase 2 of flooring – preparation of sub-base for tiles – U$D 4,000 - $1.55/sq. ft.
2. Phase 3 of flooring – ceramic flooring installation – U$D 6,000 - $2.33/sq. ft.
3. Installation of electrical system and lighting – U$D 8,000 - $3.09/sq. ft.
4. Sound system upgrade – U$D 10,000.
Blessings – Jerry and Connie