Mariano Proto writes: One of my biggest burdens, in this first term in Uruguay, has been to be able to develop a series of counseling/training sessions for our young people to be able to be more prepared and better equipped to counsel at our Christian camp. We praise The Lord for the opportunity to be able to help do that this past Nov. 11th. We had around 25 young people from different churches here in Uruguay attend these four sessions on Christian counseling. It was great to see the eagerness of these young people wanting to learn biblical principles on how to counsel in a Christian camp setting. Please join us in this effort to pray for those who took part in these courses to be able to be part of the camp staff throughout the summer season. Many of these young people have to work and continue their studies making it difficult to attend the weeks at summer camp.
Becky and I began thinking about what else can be done to expand the work of God in Uruguay. Seeing that the church in Fray Bentos is coming along toward being established, and God continues to bring more servants to this field, Becky and I began to pray and seek God’s direction as to where there is a need to plant another church. After much prayer, Carmelo will be our new target. Carmelo is a little town of 19,000 people with a city port bordering with Argentina. Throughout the year, I was able to take several survey trips to the city finding out information that would be helpful to determine if this area was “church plantable.” On one of the visits when I was passing out tracts, a lady came to me with the question: Are you a Pastor? My answer was “Yes, I am!” She smiled and said, “WE NEED this in Carmelo, someone who will spread the Gospel on a regular basis.” So, she asked us to come and plant a church. This young lady also took us to her mom’s house, and it was the same situation. Her mom also wanted a church to attend.
Doing more surveys we found out that the city is very traditional with Catholic customs (which is surprising in Uruguay). Talking to various people we found much more receptiveness than in other places.
Pray for us that we would have wisdom as we approach this new assignment. Pray for wisdom, team development, and our health. And pray for a Uruguayan pastor to take on the church plant in Fray Bentos.