Dear Friends and Family,
“Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee.” – Mark 5:19
What an incredible and busy couple of months it has been for us here at Efata. As we see in the above verse, Jesus commanded the Maniac of Gadara after experiences “great things” from God, to go and tell others what Jesus had done for him. I would like to say God has done some great things here in our ministry that we are blessed to share with you all.
In April we co-hosted the Fires of Evangelism conference here at Efata. What a tremendous time of preaching and teaching for four days. Many decisions were made, and it was a great preparation for the evangelistic campaign that I mention below.
Last prayer letter I mentioned that we were looking forward to a city-wide mass evangelism project here in Lima. Pastor Mark Smith and a team of 17 from Faith Baptist church in Tacoma, WA, came and joined with us and over 35 other churches in Lima to distribute one million gospel tracts, 175,000 New Testaments and 75,000 whole Bibles.
What a week of evangelism and open doors. Several pastors were able to get into schools, police stations, fire stations and hospitals. In addition, hundreds of church members went out daily and distributed tracts and Bibles in parks, plazas, markets, train and bus stations, as well as on the streets all over Lima. Hundreds of people were saved, and we have reports of several visiting churches. In addition, during this time I was able to preach to over 1500 cadets in the school for police officials and sub officials. We were able to preach the gospel in two other police divisions, investigations and medical supply. We had over eighty of our own people come and go out to evangelize.
Another opportunity opened to meet with several congressional aides who were able to facilitate a meeting for us with the President of the Congress. Through that meeting, we were able to provide over 400 whole Bibles for Congress. Please pray for this. As of this writing, I have a meeting scheduled on June 12th with the third Vice-President of the Congress to schedule when we will have an assembly with Congress and congressional staffers to distribute the Bibles and preach the Gospel to them, which will be televised all over the nation.
We also celebrated the 46th anniversary of the church. It was a wonderful time. Missionary Tom Knickerbocker from H.E.L.P.s Ministries was our guest speaker. He was a great blessing, and our people really enjoyed his messages and encouragement.
On the School for the Deaf front, we are operating with five new kindergarten children and still supporting the several young people who are studying in primary and secondary grades. We continue to work on the permanent solutions we need to maintain and grow the school again. This, as with most bureaucratic issues, is time-consuming and expensive but we continue to make progress.
I also took a trip to Pucallpa to our Mission. It was good to see our folks there. There were about 20 Deaf and a few hearing in the service Wednesday evening. We are praying about moving to a better location to build closer to where there are more people who are unreached with the Gospel. We also continue to pray for a missionary pastor and family who can lead that mission who can work with both the hearing and Deaf. We continue to send preachers every week praying for God to raise up a permanent pastor/missionary.
Lisa and I celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary on the 20th of May. What an honor to serve the Lord together for these many years. We look forward to many more years together Lord willing.
Thank you for your continued prayers, for our family and the ministry. It is our honor to be co-laborers together with you in here in Lima, Peru.
Joe & Lisa
Joel, Jessica & Jennifer