Eric and Barbara are a young couple in our Fundamentals of the Faith class. On a Monday in May Eric sent me this message:
Yesterday after class, we met Barbara’s mother for lunch. We showed her the “bridge illustration” you gave us and explained God’s plan of salvation. She listened very attentively. In the evening, we met her again for dinner, and she said, “I’ve been thinking all afternoon about what you told me. I want to become a Christian!”
Over the next couple weeks, Barbara’s mother Elizabeth met with Pastor Roberto who responded to her questions and explained again in detail what it means to believe in and follow Jesus Christ. Elizabeth publicly professed faith in Christ and was baptised June 14. Now part of the body of Christ, she attends worship with her daughter and son-in-law.
Our joy over a lost sinner brought by God to salvation and new life in Christ is immeasurable. And we marvel how it is through your prayers and support that we are here, that we had the opportunity to equip a young couple to share the gospel, that this young couple immediately took the lesson to heart and did so, and that the message fell upon ears that heard and a heart God had prepared to respond in faith!
Our Fundamentals of the Faith class concluded just before two back-to-back conferences. June 19 to 21, for our church’s 14th anniversary, Andrew Rogers, counseling pastor at College Park Church in Indianapolis, brought a series of messages from 1 Thessalonians on the character of the ideal church. Then June 22 to 25, Andrew Rogers addressed our second annual Biblical Counseling conference, presenting biblical principles for helping people overcome depression.
Our church loved Andrew and his wife Jenny. About 150 people, including a number of pastors from other local churches attended the counseling conference.
A few testimonies:
One pastor in attendance, Edvaldo (at right with Pr. Luis), told Andrew:
I thank God that you are not ashamed of His Word, or of Christ. I am a pastor, though I am retired now. For 50 years I pastored a Baptist church. My son signed me up for this conference and made me come. I am so glad I did. It has been a long time since I heard anyone teach the Word like you. I stopped attending conferences like this because they would all say, “Freud this and Freud that.” And I would shout, “Not Freud! Jesus!” I am encouraged to find someone who stands firm on God’s Word.
Gunther hosts a Bible study in his home. He told Andrew: “Thank you very much! This material is so good. My wife and I are already sharing it with others who were unable to attend.”
Abigail helps lead a Bible study for women who have gone through divorce. She said: “I was a pastor’s wife, but my husband separated from me two years ago. I’m not depressed, but it hurts. This conference is helpful to me personally. Thank you!”
So thank you for praying for us, for Andrew and Jenny Rogers, as well as for everyone who attended. It was a wonderful time in the Word.
In an update before our conference, we requested prayer that the translation and printing of Dr. Somerville’s book would be completed in time. Unfortunately, we would have needed an extra week. When the publisher realized the rush job on the book wasn’t going to make it, he took it back for further revisions. If I’m a Christian, Why am I Depressed? is now expected out at the end of August. Though the timing didn’t work out as we had hoped, the final product will be better, and I know this book will be a valuable resource for the church in Brazil.
Thank you once more for your partnership with us in ministry. By God’s grace, because of you, the lost are hearing the gospel and coming to faith in Christ, new believers are being discipled, and pastors and leaders are being more fully equipped to minister God’s Word to the church.
To God alone be the glory!,
Matthew & Elsiene Carroll,
Action International Ministries
P.S. In July, my parents arrived to spend some time with us and to meet our youngest. The last time we saw my parents was over two years ago. It has been very good to have them with us.