Dear Friends and Family,
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
– John 8:32
We praise God for allowing us to share the truth with others here in Peru! The year-end holidays bring many extra opportunities to reach out as people’s hearts are more tender and sometimes very lonely. The true Gospel transforms lives!
One of our goals for 2013 is to start a new church in an area called Tablada (pictured above), where we currently have a bus route. We have been visiting this area heavily for the past several weeks and have seen many people saved. Please pray that God will give us guidance on exactly where to start the new church and provide the funds necessary for a new church plant. We currently have two cell groups meeting during the week in this area.
There are so many Jehovah’s Witnesses falsely indoctrinating both the deaf and hearing. To help our people, I have prepared a series of messages against this false cult. One deaf man was saved last week after learning about the truth. He had been studying with them. As the verse above states, the truth does set you free!
Rebecca Houghton and our children’s choir completed a wonderful music CD with 42 songs from her students that span many years of teaching in Mexico, the U.S, and Peru. Our children did a great job working very hard and long together to complete this lifelong ministry dream of Miss Rebecca. Praise the Lord for a job well done and for beautiful children’s music for the Spanish world.
I have had the opportunity to preach several conferences in other cities as well as here in Lima during this quarter. We have seen many encouraged and saved. The last conference was a family conference, and on the final Sunday morning, the altar was filled with families that came together to pray and weep and forgive. Pray as we go to Huancayo in January and Iquitos in February to teach and preach.
The 2012 school year has come to an end. Many of the deaf children in the residential school are going home for the summer and will return the first week of March to start anew. Please pray for them that God will keep them safe; some are not going back to ideal home circumstances. We praise God for souls saved this year in the school, both of students and parents.
We have nine deaf children from 17 down to 2 years old who call Efata home. Please pray for these children as we show them Christ’s love and care. One young girl is in the process of being adopted by a Christian family in the States. Please pray for God to have His will in this process.
Our children are staying very busy. They have spent a great deal of time practicing with the choir for our Christmas cantata. Of course, there is a great deal of school to get done! We are enjoying the birthday season, as well. Over the past three months, James turned 19, Jared turned 17, I got older (smile!), Judson turned 15, and John will turn 9. Wow! Three more to go next quarter!
James completed his first semester of Bible College at Baptist College of Ministry in Wisconsin. He will spend Christmas at his grandparents’ home in Missouri. This will be his first Christmas away from the family.
Thank you so very much for your continued support and prayers for the work we are doing among the Deaf and hearing of Peru and beyond.
Thank you also for the Christmas offerings. They have helped us make this a very special time for all here at Efata. We look forward to a wonderful new year of opportunities to serve the Lord.
Please feel free to follow me on Twitter at @JoeFKotvas, the only social media I like – short & to the point!
Bro. Joe & Lisa,
Joseph, Julianne, James, Jared, Judson,
Joy, John, Joel, Jessica, Jennifer