We have had the chance this past month to travel to both Montevideo, Uruguay and Concepción, Chile to strengthen the brothers and sisters there. It is an answer to many prayers that we are able to be down here in South America and live a small portion of what Paul was able to live. Honestly it was a time of strengthening for us also. It is sobering to visit small churches that are struggling to stay together and keep their faith burning strong. It is hard to see the needs so great and feel like there is no way to meet them all.
We traveled to Montevideo in the beginning of October and spent a great week with the six disciples that are there. It was incredible to spend time with Pablo and Rosa, who are leading the group, and strengthen our friendship. We have made a commitment to each other to talk every week and it has been great so far. We are really praying that God will inject faith into the group even though it is so small. While we were there, Kay was able to meet a girl who wanted to study the bible. It was a small reminder that there are people everywhere searching for God, we just need to find them and bring them to him.
This last week we spent time in Concepción, which is a city about six hours by bus from Santiago . There is a group there of 12 disciples, two of which were baptized in the last couple of months. It is a young church that was planted this year from Santiago. We have recently begun a "Member Missionary" training program here in Santiago that will be sending groups to Concepción and Viña del Mar starting in December. We will be doing a 4-week training course and then begin sending out small groups every month to encourage our smaller sister congregations. Right now, we have about 25 disciples training with us for these projects and they are fired up about giving and serving and traveling, by their own means, to help these brothers and sisters.
We were able to spend time with the disciples in both Montevideo and Concepción talking about faith and praying for God's hand to protect them from the attacks of Satan. There is so much work to be done and so many prayers to be prayed. But we know that God is working, and we are confident in his promise that they will be "more than conquerors through him who loved us." (Romans 8:37)