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Ministry Updates

Finding Hope Again

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FamilyHow can I survive day to day when there is no food or money? Little by little, hope was running out for Lorena López. Every day, she never had a good answer to that question.

You see, Lorena and her family live in Venezuela, where there is not enough food or medicine. The country used to be one of the wealthiest in Latin America. Now the citizens have to wait in extremely long lines for limited food supplies that cost many times more than they should.

In Brisas del Mango, where Lorena and her family live, the situation is no different. Despite Lorena’s husband's job, they never have enough money and the next day could mean not having enough food for their two young children. Lorena and her husband Víctor Martínez were always stressed and worried what they were going to eat and how they were going to survive.

Many of the families' income does not provide enough to buy what is necessary because the costs are too high or because they couldn't find what they needed.

But how can a church impact this reality?

"A few Christians came to my house and they asked me if I wanted to hear from the Word of God and if they could visit me," Lorena says. "I told them yes but I thought they weren't going to return because this has happened with other people before and they never came back."

They began to visit Lorena every weekend and talk to her about Jesus and to read the Bible with her. One day they asked Lorena if she'd like to accept Jesus into her heart and she said yes.

For Lorena, Christ arrived just at the right moment. The stress of living in fear of the next day was almost too much for her. She would cry at night because everything was so stressful and weighed heavily on her. And even though the reality in Venezuela has not changed, Lorena feels that with Christ in her life, she has hope every day.

Lorena’s husband Víctor was also feeling the heaviness of caring for his family in this difficult time. His work seemed to slip through his hands like water and even though he tried hard, it wasn't ever enough. In the midst of this, he heard the words of hope Lorena shared with him.

Lorena's churchWhen the Christians invited him to the inauguration of their church, Víctor told his wife that he would go alone just for the food they were going to share at the end of the service. But when he was there, he knew God had been touching his heart for some time.

"When I was in this service, I remembered a dream I had had where there were various children and we were all meeting together. There I realized the church was this place in my dream and it was then that I said, ‘This was from God.’”

Now Lorena and Víctor have both accepted Jesus as their Savior and they have been baptized, being the first believers of this new church plant.

At this church in Brisas del Mango, they have found hope in the midst of difficult circumstances. Through the strength they have receive through prayer, discipleship, and the love of God, their reality has been transformed.

Dioresley's Story

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Dioresley's StoryDioresley Iguita and other pastors of the Assemblies of God in Colombia were invited to a workshop on the importance of church planting and the great need the country has for more churches.

He remembers it was a challenge from the beginning after utilizing the Take Your Church’s Pulse tool from Multiplication Network Ministries (MNM). Although he had thought his local church was doing well, he realized they had failed to fulfill the Great Commission.

“The tools from MNM have helped me but what most challenged me was realizing that we can do so many more things than we were already doing,” Dioresley says.

For this pastor, the health of a church no longer represents having a great number of members but the multiplication of more churches. “To do things well, we need to multiply ourselves every day and be focused on this growth from the outside and not just be closed up within,” he says.

Pastor Dioresley plans to become involved in the church planter training provided by MNM and hopes to learn and use the practical tools that MNM provides to churches in order to motivate the leadership of his community to plant around 100 new churches.

Roberto's Story - A Witness Unto the Uttermost

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Roberto Wasum and Guillermo TukupRoberto Wasum is part of the indigenous Shuar people group and lives in a community deep in the Ecuadorian jungle. His home is accessible on foot, by four-wheel drive, or by air. No one arrives at this remote location without planning and great determination.

Guillermo Tukup, a church planter trained through Multiplication Network Ministries (MNM), planned and was determined to reach the village where Roberto lived. He wanted to be a witness.

Two years ago, Guillermo came to Roberto’s community of Juyukamentza to talk about Jesus.

At first Roberto doubted what Guillermo taught and wondered how this church planter could come and teach them about Christ since he didn’t even carry a Bible.

Nevertheless, Guillermo not only began friendships with Roberto and many other people in the village, but he also earned their trust and said he would return again soon. 

Bible Reading

In just a few weeks, Guillermo returned with the Word of God. It was in their language—Achuar.

Hearing the Bible in Achuar, the people could now understand. Guillermo shared the gospel with Roberto and taught everyone the important truths of Jesus’ sinless life, sacrificial death, and His miraculous resurrection! It was then Roberto accepted Jesus.

“I thought I was already a Christian before Guillermo came to our village. But I continued to participate in the parties and drinking with the people in my community. They had no reason to believe I was a Christian. I wanted to be a witness, but my actions made that difficult. Now it’s been two years since Roberto let go of his doubts and began to live a life empowered by God to live differently.

As Roberto began living in a way that honored Christ, the people of Juyukamentza began to separate themselves from him. Thankfully, Guillermo was there to help Roberto through this season of his life. As he learned about Jesus from the Bible, Roberto’s life changed. He had recognized his sin and God began to transform his life. He was also being trained by Guillermo with MNM church planting materials.

“With the MNM materials we have received, we are learning and then doing the work,” Roberto says. “Even though it is sometimes difficult, we continue and are planning to take what we have learned to other villages."

Roberto Teaching“We are teaching in other areas and we are preaching the gospel,” Roberto shares. In addition to preaching the Word, Guillermo is actively training leaders in the village of Chinkianentza, his home village. After these new leaders, like Roberto, have completed all of the MNM training modules, they will continue to go to other communities that have not yet heard the gospel.

Currently, Roberto is working in the community of Yanguntza. He wants to take the gospel to places where he knows people may reject him. He is committed to giving his life so lost people can come to know about Jesus.

Roberto has been an important partner with Guillermo as they go to new communities. Roberto invites Guillermo to talk to his friends so they can hear about Christ. They both continue to learn and prepare themselves to take the gospel to the communities in the jungles of Ecuador to places where the light of the gospel has never been seen.

They are “witnesses unto the uttermost,” Acts 1:8.

Please consider partnering with MNM as we engage, train, and equip more people like Roberto and Guillermo to strengthen and multiply healthy churches.

Your gift today will be used tomorrow to help change the future for so many. Donate now.

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