by Darrell Webb, SBC of Virginia Regional Missionary
In the small Ecuadorian village of Daular, farmer Eduardo Ludena and his wife, Luisa Sotonayor, have faithfully sown the seeds of the Gospel for years through the village’s children’s mission. Due to a loss of support, the mission was no longer able to fund a Bible teacher for the children. Eduardo and Luisa began praying that God would send a teacher to help them reach the boys and girls for Christ.
In Manassas, VA, three churches bonded with one mission. Although each church has a different primary ethnicity, they united around a singular calling to take the Gospel to Ecuador. The congregation of Emmanuel Baptist Church is primarily Anglo; Iglesia Bautista Hispana Emanuel, primarily Hispanic; and Called by Jesus Baptist Church, primarily Korean.
God prompted Dr. Sun Young Chung, pastor of Called by Jesus, to approach Pastor Kleber Jimenez of Iglesia Emanuel about the possibility of partnering to go on mission to Jimenez’s hometown in Ecuador. With the help of Emmanuel’s education pastor, Dave Melander, the three churches began to pray together, fund the trip together, and gather a team together (three from Emmanuel, three from Iglesia Emanuel, and four from Called by Jesus). According to Dr. Chung, Korean churches in the Manassas area were in awe of how the three churches came together for this partnership.
While in country, the team worked with Love of Christ Baptist Church in Guayaquil. God empowered them to preach and to share a pictorial Gospel tract to present the message of Jesus. They went door to door and shared in school assemblies, where the school directors welcomed them. One couple from Called by Jesus felt intimidated because they could not speak Spanish–but through the pictorial Gospel tract, they were able to see children come to faith in Jesus.
“One of the most exciting moments of my life,” shares Pastor Dave from Emmanuel, “was to see children who could not speak my language come to Christ.”
While there, the team saw 40 Ecuadorians accept the Gospel message. God also used the team to encourage the Ecuadorian churches, which often feel alone in a culture where Catholicism is predominant. The believers in Ecuador were amazed that this group from Manassas would come to such a poor place to show them love and to share the Gospel.
The three-church team also made their way to the village of Daular (about an hour from Guayaquil), where they met Eduardo and Luisa. God answered the prayers of this couple by sending Pastor Kleber from Iglesia Emanuel to teach the boys and girls at the mission about Jesus’ love for them. Before leaving, the team promised to send back the necessary financial support for a Bible teacher to minister at the children’s mission.
The results of the trip did not end when the team returned home. God is continuing to work:
- The three churches have a rekindled excitement for missions and evangelism.
- God has drawn the churches into a mission partnership and to be, as Dr. Chung says, “One Family in Christ,” desiring others to join them.
- The churches continue to support the mission work in the little village of Daular.
- They plan to return to Ecuador with a larger team in May of 2016.
- God has given them a vision to carry the Gospel to all 14 countries represented in Iglesia Bautista Hispana Emanuel.
For more information on this partnership for Ecuador, contact Dr. Sun Young Chung at email@example.com.