We just finished our workshops for children ministry workers. We had 20 participants over two days. A brother from the Proevangelization of the Child Alliance presented the workshop and had assistance from some ladies to do practical exercises. We hope to have some new works with children soon. People of all ages came who want to work with children. I was surprised. Most were from Cajamarca and within an hour and a half into the mountains. Three came from Bambamarca, two of whom already work with children under the direction of Pastor Segundo Goicochea. The other from Bambamarca comes from the countryside around Bambamarca and she vowed to work with children, even if she can only find two! Additionally three attended from Chota and three from Lajas.
By Narciso Zamora
I recently returned from a church-planting trip to a small town of Luya, that on a good day, is about 15 hours by bus from my home in Cajamarca. I’m happy to say that I was well received. One day, we had 14 meet together, 17 on another day, and 10 new children came to meet with us as well. The three families I worked with are now meeting for Bible studies and we’re preparing materials for them to evangelize, disciple and cement their new congregation.
I thank God for the outcome of that trip, and I had plenty of reason to praise God for the journey too.
I left on a Tuesday morning at 4 a.m. for a 17-hour trip on a mini-bus. All day we went up and down hills and mountains, with narrow curves where only one vehicle at a time could pass. If we met up with another vehicle, one of us would have to back up for the length of several blocks until there was a wider spot in the road where we could pass. And if that was bad enough, it seemed that about half the trip was on roads under construction.
At 1 a.m., we finally arrived in the city of Chachapoyas. When the bus arrived, many people had someone waiting on them, and within minutes, there was only me and another young man standing around. He had to catch a bus out at 5 a.m. and I had to catch one at 7 a.m., so we wondered what to do for those short hours in the middle of the night.
The young man said, “Let’s walk one block and see about that hotel.”
We arrived and rang the bell and a young woman came out, asked for our documents, and then said, “I have room, it will be $13.”
That was very expensive for me.
As I was thinking about what to do, the young man said, “I only have four hours to sleep because I have to leave again on a bus at 5 a.m.”
The young lady then replied, “There is a room you could share for $10.”
The hotel was pretty full that night – the room was on top floor. When we opened the door, we were surprised to see that there was only one double bed.
I placed my backpack on one side of the room and lay down on the bed. The other man just sat up on the bed.
I said, “Lay down.” And then I started to tell him about the Gospel. I thought it was the best thing to do since we were as cozy as two cats in a bag! We certainly hadn’t intended to end up together in a room. We talked about the Word of God for about an hour and then we prayed. The young man was a Christian, but admitted that he had been lagging in his zeal for God. It had been some months since he attended church, because he had moved and not yet found another church home.
We slept for a couple of hours after that and then the young man woke and left in time to catch his bus at 5 a.m. But those few hours meant a lot more than just a little rest for his body. That night he renewed his faith and commitment to Christ!
I was left wondering what kind of fool would take a hotel room with a total stranger – and share the same bed, no less! I had taken into account where this young man had gotten on to the bus, however, and knowing that small town he was from gave me some confidence about his character. But that was all I had to go on as I consented to sharing a room and falling to sleep with my backpack full of my ministry materials – computer, projector and films.
The trip home was another adventure. With all the road work, compounded with strong rain, our trip was delayed by eight hours. The people on the bus had eaten breakfast at 8 a.m., but we got stranded by the rain and construction in a place where there was no food to be had. There were children on the bus and they cried out of hunger. It was a tough day and people were disgruntled. When we finally were able to get through, we stopped at the first place we could find and they only had rice and potatoes to serve us. We ate it – our lunch and dinner at once – and finally made it back to Cajamarca at 12:30 a.m.
At that hour, I was not able to find any transport back to my house from the bus stop – no buses or taxis, so I had to walk. It’s not safe to walk by oneself at that hour and there I was with that computer and projector in my backpack! I went praying all the way, trusting Jesús’ care.
God continues to bless us as we work to establish new churches in places without evangelical churches.
We just finished one week of classes with our Missions Institute. It was tiring, especially for my son Gerson who taught many of the classes. (He is a professor in a seminary in Lima.) We held classes in Bambamarca, and I took advantage of this time to check out a number of questionable requests for literature that were coming out of Bambamarca – addresses provided to me by the staff at Christian Triumph Company. Sadly, I was not able to find any of the addresses or people that have been requesting literature (and Bambamarca is not a big place). It’s sad that people will abuse a free resource like this to turn a profit.
Guest post by Donna Lee Schillinger
A group of six of from Hilltop Bible Church just finished a two-week trip in Peru, hanging out with the Walking Man, Narciso Zamora. It was an awesome trek in which we retraced our way from Chota in the mountains back to Narciso’s spiritual roots, outside the jungle town of Moyobamba. We had the privilege of meeting his spiritual parents – the family that took him in when he was “yet a sinner” and loved him into the family of God – Don Jose Tiburcio and Doña Emelina. We also met mots of the grown children of the family, and were hosted for two nights by “Agucho”, the oldest brother (Agustin).
Narciso spent more than two years with that family, and after they helped him through seminary in Lima, he returned to the jungle and worked there for two more years…which was why it was rather surprising to learn that Narciso had never held a monkey! Well, we remedied that!
We set out in boat from Iquitos, motoring two hours on the Amazon, before coming to the Amazon King lodge, near a tiny jungle town – more like a settlement – I looked for it Google Maps, and well, it doesn’t make Google, it’s off the grid. Near the lodge is a small animal rescue operation where we were able to hold and touch a lot of jungle animals that live there while they are on the mend. They were not in cages and were free to roam and go whenever they wanted, including the anaconda that was featured in this video. It was like being behind the scenes at a zoo, but better! Here’s a brief compilation of some of our jungle fun, and in particular, the historic first of Narciso holding a monkey! (Note his joy! Haha)