2018 July Trip Report
Praise God for the wonderful harvest that was brought in the two weeks we were in Guyana. Thank all of you who prayed for us. We are always amazed by the opportunities that are put before us. Our Guyanese team does a wonderful job of making plans and organizing the two weeks of ministry.
Both weeks, our travel to Guyana was uneventful and very smooth. Neither of our returns were smooth. The first week, they were a few hours late arriving back in Charlotte and the second week team had quite an adventure coming home. Last Sunday at 8:00pm was when we were supposed to arrive back in Charlotte. That was when the very heavy thunderstorm hit right at the airport so we were diverted to Columbia, SC. We waited a good while for the storm to pass and as we sat, other planes that had been diverted were sitting beside us. The pilot finally told us that one of those planes was an international flight whose crew had timed out. Therefore, since they had to go back to Charlotte to be able to go through customs, they moved our crew over to their plane and that left us without a flight crew. After another long wait, they gave the people on our plane the option of getting off so Steve rented two cars and the ten of us left the plane on the stairs that they brought onto the runway and we took a bus to the terminal. We drove from Columbia to Charlotte and finally got home about midnight. We were told that if we had stayed on the plane, it would have been after 3:00 am before we were home so we were glad for our choice even though we had to make the trip back to Columbia the next afternoon to turn the cars back in.
We always say that being flexible is the first rule of going on a mission trip. I was so proud of our team for having a great attitude throughout the inconvenient process.
Now for the fantastic news…….. The results for the two weeks were amazing. We had 397 salvations. In the prisons we had 209 inmates pray with us one on one as we washed their feet. We heard many stories of how some of these men are even glad they were in the prison so they could hear the good news of the gospel. One man asked Allen if he could wash his feet and that was a very tender sight. In one prison, as soon as we got there, some men rushed up to us and asked if we were going to be baptizing because they had accepted Christ in prison on other occasions and wanted to take the next step of baptism. We baptized 124 prisoners in five prisons. Instead of baptizing in the kiddy swimming pool like before, we are using a 55-gallon drum so the men can be fully immersed. To see their faces when they come out of that water is a sight our team will never forget. Jon Freeman baptized one of the men he established a relationship with as he led him to Christ and helped him understand how he could be free even though he is behind bars. Another inmate who had talked with Allen requested that he be the one to baptize him.
The other very special thing that happened in the prisons was that we were able to identify a number of prisoners who are Christian leaders in the prisons. We are going to find a way to help these leaders learn and grow so they can help the men learn and grow. I washed the feet of a man who had been in the fire last summer when the Camp Street Prison burned down. He and 2 other men were trapped in a cell. They kicked the wall in and were able to get out and escape. He was moved to another prison where one of these Christian leaders is housed. The man said that he realized that Jesus saved him and was led to faith in Christ by this inmate/leader.
Moving on to the children’s ministry, we went to five different churches, mostly small and very, very crowded. We had a great time with music, Bible stories and with the time that we washed their feet and talked to them. Many parents had come with their children and that led to wonderful life-changing decisions by many adults. There were 186 people who accepted Christ in these events and about a fourth of them were adults. What a thrill to have children and parents accept Christ on the same day so they can all grow together.
One employee at our hotel accepted Christ and an employee at the pizza restaurant also prayed and accepted Jesus. I am thankful for team members who are ready at every turn to share the good news.
Each team member experienced special moments that will be memories forever and interacted with people who are impressed on our hearts. We all pray that God will continue to make Himself known in Guyana. May this country of less than 800,000 continue to be flooded with the Gospel of Christ and may the Great Commission be reached, that every Guyanese hear the truth of how he or she can have a personal, life changing relationship with Jesus Christ.
Thank you so much for praying for our trip and please continue to pray for our Guyanese team as they monthly take the good news to the remote villages all over this country.