Dear Friends & Family,
Hope your summer is cooking with some fun and not just this heat. Ours is cooking with revival fire! We are 3 days away from the La Ceja gospel crusade. Preparation for this one has been intense, challenging, and awesome. Even though there has been much political and religious opposition, all is now ready. Please allow me to share a couple things with you.
Last Saturday, we trained and activated 120 youth in evangelism and released them on the streets of the city. They handed out 15,000 invitations to the crusade and put up 500 posters. Moreover, they prayed with many to be healed and receive Jesus as personal savior.
At the end of the day, great tragedy struck. Pastor Hector, 75 years of age, had spent all day on the streets with the youth sharing Jesus with the people of La Ceja. He is a Colombian and a pastor, who retired two years ago from forty years of ministry in southern California. He has been helping young Pastor Freddy, who pastors the church we are working with in La Ceja. He was to be in charge of the follow up and consolidation for new believers in this crusade. At about 5 pm it began to rain heavily. Pastor Hector climbed up on his roof to fix a leak and tragically fell to his death.
This is a huge loss to the local church. Hector had retired and returned to Colombia, his homeland, in order to live out his latter years. Of course he nor anyone else expected this tragic accident. At seventy-five years of age he was helping a younger pastor, giving big out of his retirement to this poor and struggling church, and discipling new believers. The last six hours of his life he was on the street with a bunch of teenagers sharing Jesus, laughing, and having the time of his life. Only to return home being knocked unconscious and waking up in heaven looking into the face of Jesus.
When I arrived to the church Sunday morning the atmosphere was heavy to say the least. As God would have it, Holy Spirit came and touched us in amazing ways. As I stood before this hurting and grieving church, God filled my mouth in a way that I have never experienced. Pastor Hector’s life and example became our rallying cry. The fire of God has come on us and we are all more determined than ever to win this city for Jesus.
People could say we are crazy to try and do two major citywide crusades in the middle of the summer. Pastors will say it’s financial suicide. Summertime is about so many things for so many people. This summer, my heart is burning and breaking to win the lost souls in this valley. Please help us to make this a summer for souls. The ministry needs to pay off the expenses of this La Ceja crusade and for the next approaching crusade that will begin in El Retiro on August 11th. Please hook your faith up with Julie and I. We need your prayers and partnership.
My friend, Pastor Camilo Bedoya, told me last night, “Charley you have no idea what you are doing in that valley. It is like you are running a bulldozer for Jesus in hard and unplowed territory.” With your prayers and support, together we will keep clearing the land for Jesus and His mighty kingdom.
In a few days we will have a great report of what God has done!
Charley & Julie