Lannie and Melba Green, two of our board members, along with Connie and myself flew to Lima, Peru to conduct conferences in Lima and in Tarma, on the other side of the Andes Mountains.
Peru is truly a beautiful country with beautiful people. We were joined at the airport in Atlanta by Judy McAllister, formerly of San Antonio and of Wayside Chapel. Judy and her family joined Wayside in 1981. Judy’s oldest daughter Meredith began attending at that time as an 11 year old girl. What a delight it was for us to see Meredith, now a missionary in Tarma, and to sense the call of God upon her life. I heard an African American preacher years ago say that “some are sent and some just went.” Meredith sensed God’s call and was sent. She has become Peruvian in every sense of the word and is making a difference. Through the organization of Jim Panaggio in Lima and Meredith in Tarma, we had two conferences and ministered to approximately 200 pastors, wives and Christian leaders. We really felt the love, openness and hunger of these dear people to receive something from God.
Judy McAllister had this to say, “Attending the Pastor’s conferences in Lima and Tarma, Peru reminded me of the redeeming power of the Word of God in lives well-lived as Connie and Steve shared their testimonies. They were also a reminder of the unity of scripture as Steve presented the Supremacy of Christ in both Old and New Testaments. It was exhilarating to witness the sheep being well fed.” One of the pastors in Tarma wrote, “We were encouraged to know such a ministry exclusively for pastors exists. Also appreciated the invitation not only for the pastors, but also for their wives. We pray you will return soon so that we can share more time together.”
Lannie and Melba shared their testimonies which clearly impacted those present. They received the following in a letter sent to them: “Personally, we are very grateful for your ministry and for all the effort that you made to come to Peru and Tarma. As co-servants, we know the cost of coming all the way here, and it is our prayer that God would repay you for your love for the Lord and His church. In the same way, we are grateful for the encouragement of the ministry of your pastor and his wife, whom you have accompanied and that God would keep and greatly prosper all the work that you are a part of.”
Meredith McAllister writes, “Pastor Steve and Connie really connected with the pastors and wives in Lima and Tarma. Their transparency was refreshing and encouraging, as most leaders do not share their struggles and failures openly. Steve’s love for Scripture and the centrality of Christ in life and ministry are values that he lives out, preaches, and it is contagious. Having grown up at Wayside, it was fun to share this time with Connie and Steve, get to translate the messages, and be reminded of how grateful I am for having grown up under his teaching.”
As you can see from the comments given that there is a great need for encouragement, equipping and just coming together when it comes to Christian
leaders. It was not an easy trip, considering the air pollution over Lima and the high altitude in Tarma which resulted in upper respiratory issues and altitude sickness, but it was well worth the effort.
Thank you for praying and giving so faithfully. Our next trip will be to minister to 600 pastors and wives (300 couples) in Uganda in the end of August. Please be in prayer for that conference. From all of us at SSI, thank you!
Pastor Steve and Connie