May 2014 Eurasia Review
WATOTO VISIT, KAMPALA & GULU, UGANDA: From March 12-22, Dan and I, as Sunday Line Communications representatives, along with co-worker, Linda, and her husband, Jamie, visited Watoto. As we visited the church in Kampala, the villages and centers and viewed the sustainability projects throughout Uganda, we experienced first-hand the commitment of the Watoto family, the unity of vision, their passion for excellent, Christ-centered service to rescue, raise and rebuild. Our own lives have been enriched and challenged and forever changed.
Watoto: Rescue, Raise Rebuild
“A place will not be defined by the past but by the future,” commented our 24 year old guide, Adrian, as he began to show us around the Laminadera children’s village in the northern part of Uganda. This area of Gulu, close to the Sudan border, is known for the devastating war tragedies that took place when, for 20 years, the Lord’s Resistance Army ravaged the area. Women were abducted, mutilated and forced to service the soldiers; children were taught to be killing machines, often beginning with their own family.
Restoration to Dignity:
“I live a miracle. I see life every day,” emphatically states 28 year old Pastor Victor as he looks across the village. Former child soldiers have now become part of a supportive family unit, have discovered a new identity, and have found acceptance and God’s love. They are taught to have integrity, to develop good habits, to be honest and moral. This brings life to the nation and to them as individuals.”
At the Living Hope center for women, restoration is taking place. With supportive programs, educational training, healing and new significance has been made available to more than 1000 women. “They are becoming leaders and business women in their communities – they have their lives back,” says director Brenda.
SALEM CHURCH MINISTRY IN SPAIN: March 23-April 22
28 years of ministry and personal relationship with the Salem churches
As we entered the church in Torrejon, the eastern side of Madrid, Miriam was playing the piano and singing. Her music, her heart, her spirit resonated with ours and we were moved to tears. It was a Sunday morning in 1985. Dan and I were visiting the Salem churches throughout Spain and God was confirming to us that this would be our next place of ministry. This April, 28 years later, we find ourselves in Miriam’s home. Our son-in-law, Mark, and daughter, Kim, are with us as they introduce their children to this nation that will become their next place of ministry. Once again Miriam is playing the piano and singing and once again our hearts are touched as we consider God’s faithfulness.
- Almost 47,000,000 people living in a country half the size of BC
- More than 7,000 cities and towns without a single evangelical work
- A people with a secular orientation, an anti-Christian mentality, a history of religious Catholicism
- Changing demographics – of 1,600,000 believers only 400,000 are native Spaniards committed to Christ
- Language & regional distinctions that create political and social unrest
PRESENT CHALLENGES and MOTIVE FOR PRAYER
- Growing the new church plant in Seseña – just south of Madrid (photo of congregation)
- Economic downturn creating financial pressure on pastors and congregations
- Reaching the native Spaniard who is historically more resistant to the gospel than the more open Spanish speaking immigrants.
Though the number of people in the Christian churches has more than doubled over the last several years, the growth is due mainly to the increase of the Spanish speaking immigrants from Latin and South American countries. The challenge remains to reach the heart of the native Spaniard.
REACHING THE SPANIARD
In Aviles, on the northern Cantabrian Sea, Maxi and Angela have integrated themselves into the community through social programs: after school children’s activities, exercise classes, theatre groups, workshops on social issues and local concerns, food distribution to the needy. “When they get to know us in this way,” says Angela, “the Spaniard begins to form a new concept of a Christian and becomes more open to hear biblical truths.”
One of Angela’s university classmates requested the use of their center for her birthday party and invited 2 of her friends. During the meal, the conversation initiated by the girls, centered on a discussion of their question to know the difference between the Catholic and the Protestant religion… a very wide, open door to share faith.
REASONS FOR CELEBRATION
- The long-awaited facility for the Madrid Salem church is under construction and should be completed by June of 2015
- Newly appointed, Pastor Samuel and Vanessa are taking able leadership of the church in Ponferrada, north of Madrid.
- Gifted couples in Barcelona are desirous to deepen their biblical understanding to better serve their community
- Jose Maria and Feli, pioneers of the church in Cordoba, are passing the baton to Paco and Dorcas, a couple with a long-time calling to ministry
- Creative outreach and discipleship is growing the church in Bilbao, the northern Basque region of Spain
- In the olive growing region of Martos, Pastors Oscar and Encarni are encouraged by the new families that have come to faith in Christ
(read more: www.mactavish.blog/spain)
Connect with us:
Dan and Mardell MacTavish
Global Workers Eurasia
14166 Malabar Avenue,
White Rock, BC V4B 2Y3