Editor’s note: I interviewed Helen Prado this evening. Helen and her husband John served the Lord with GMSA for many years in Chile. Listen in as I ask some questions and she responds:
How long did you minister in South America with GMSA?
John and I were in Chile over 40 years. We ministered some times a few months in one place or another to fill for furloughing missionaries, for example in Fray Bentos and in Gualeguaychu.
Where did you serve?
We lived in Temuco, Santiago, and Coquimbo, all in Chile. We started in 1978 in Temuco. In the early 1980s we were in Santiago at one church in the morning and another church in the evening. Then we moved up north, and then back to Temuco. Then we went back to La Serena and Coquimbo. We moved about 27 times. I couldn’t do that now!
But if I had to do it again, I would! I loved the work, even though we traveled a lot. I miss it. Meanwhile, I’m doing what I can while I’m here in Florida.
What was a very good memory of ministry?
In the Temuco area, John visited one of churches up in countryside. When he came home, I knew we were going to move. John told the men there that he would pay them to build instead of having men from the United States come to build for them. How we paid them all that money I do not know. I told John that I wondered if he had to rob a bank to do it! But in the end, the people then had their own church building which they built themselves. John felt the national believers could do the job. We didn’t want outside workers in order to help the men to appreciate their own labor.
John meant business! John just plowed in there to get the work done.
What would you say to someone considering to come to minister in South America?
I’d tell them to be sure that God calls you, and not man. Do what you are told to do. Don’t get attached to your plans, but rather let God lead you. We would plan one thing and then God would move us around. That takes a lot out of you, because we have our own plans that we want to follow through. But the more we do that God wants us to do, the better off we are. Be ready for change. God is the potter. Be clay in the hands of God!
And eat what they feed you!
Is there anything else you want to share?
I am so thankful for the support that I still receive. It is a gift of God’s grace! Someone told me that the churches are not supporting me because of what I am doing now, but because of what I did before. That is a blessing for me.
I ask prayer to keep up my enthusiasm! Sometimes I bite off more than I can chew. Pray that I will keep my eyes focused on the Lord instead of the things around me.
One other thing: I can only get work done when the TV is turned off. So, when we have a storm and the television goes out for a day, I thank the Lord because I can get more work done!
Do you want to know more? Contact Helen and she would be happy to write or talk about her ministry and what she learned in the years of serving the King of kings.