May 5, 2007

Open Doors and Saved Souls!


Dear Pastors, Praying Friends, and Family,

In our last letter, I wrote you about how a young man named Ebelio came to our church asking for help for a house-church that is located in the mountains surrounding our town.  Ebelio was saved that day in my office.  A few days after writing that letter, we visited the house-church where they had no doctrinal training.  It was an hour’s drive through the mountains on dirt roads.  When we arrived we saw the adobe church they have started building.  We then were given directions to get to the house-church.  We put the truck in 4-wheel drive, crossed a small creek, slung mud as we climbed a dirt hill, drove across a large pasture area, then through a potato field.  Just as we topped a hill, there it was.  The small adobe house is located down in a valley next to a creek.  We were warmly greeted and entered into the first room.  The house has dirt floors and the corners of the room were filled with freshly harvested potatoes.  There were guinea pigs and rabbits scampering around on the floor, not aware that they would be the coming days’ meals.  Then we entered another room.  It has a few homemade benches on the right and a small table used for a pulpit in front.  The roof is made of cane poles laid side by side on top of wooden poles connected to the adobe walls.  It is just high enough that we don’t bump our heads.  Bro. Shane and I spent a few hours talking with Ebelio’s cousin, the house-church leader.  As we sat discussing doctrine, people started coming in from the field.  It seems that they heard that some “gringos” were there and were curious.  News travels fast in this farming country.  Before we knew it, there were over twenty people anxious to hear what we had to say.  We sang, presented the Gospel, and answered many questions.  Before we left, they asked us to come back to teach them more. 

We have now begun teaching weekly doctrine classes one night each week in the house-church.  We arrive and preach by lantern light which we bring and hang on a nail in the roof.  The only light they have is a small florescent bulb run by a car battery.  The men, women, and children walk long distances from their farms in bare feet, sandals, and some in work boots to hear God’s Word.  It is their custom that the women sit separate on a cloth mat on the floor while the men sit in the pews.  Before each service they feed us a meal of rice and potatoes with hot sauce and flour to sprinkle on top.  They also provide us with a drink called ‘quaker’, made of flour and water.  We can see our breath as we preach in this high altitude at night.  As we leave, the heavens are lit up with stars and we thank God that He has given us this open door to teach His Word.

Another blessing to our ministry was the salvation of Lidia.  She is the wife of one of our members who has never been to our church and refused to come.  She had repeatedly told her husband that she was Catholic and wanted nothing to do with Christianity.  Last year she found out she had cancer and has been in Lima, about 14 hours away, most of the time since then for treatment. We found out that she was back in town briefly and took the opportunity to drop by.  After talking for a while, I asked her where she would go if she were to die today.  She dropped her head and answered that she did not know. I then asked if I could show here what God's Word says about her eternal destination.  As I finished the Gospel presentation, she prayed and accepted Christ as her Savior! 

Recently, Carla challenged the kids in her class to memorize the books of the Bible.  Four of her kids took the challenge and learned them.  We treated them to a surprise at a local ice cream shop.  They also received certificates for their hard work. 

After the morning service on Easter Sunday we baptized one and had two more saved!

Last month, Carla and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary!  Thank you to those who remembered us with cards and email.

STATESIDE:  Our daughter Christa has just completed her third year of college.  She will be graduating in December, a half year early, because she has taken several extra classes.  We are very proud of her.  * My father has begun treatments for the prostate cancer.  Thanks for your prayers on his behalf.  

May God continue to bless each of you.          Please remember to take a look at the new photo albums on our web site.                                                                                        

Serving Him for You in Peru,

                                  Don & Carla Rich


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Sending Church
Calvary Baptist Church
3988 Powder Springs Rd
Powder Springs, GA 30127
Support Address
Central Missionary Clearinghouse
P.O. Box
, Texas 77218
Field Address
Casilla Postal #90
South America

(Address mail to DONALD RICH, instead of DON)

Stateside Address
3625 Lindley Cir.
Powder Springs, GA 30127-2703

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