Dear Pastors and Praying Friends,
What a joy to be able to write to you at this wonderful time of year! We thank our precious heavenly Father for sending His only begotten Son to die on the cross for our sins. Luke 2:11 says, “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” Peruvians love to celebrate Christmas. They talk about “Papa Noel” (Santa Claus) bringing gifts and love to get together with their families, not unlike in the States. The problem is that many of them have no idea why Jesus came. Our job is to share with them the precious news of what Christmas is all about—salvation and new life in Christ, which is truly the greatest gift ever.
I am so glad to report that after four months of work and study I have finished my language school. Now, the true work begins with more reading, studying, and practicing to continue learning the finer points of the language. Please pray for me as I prepare to teach an introduction to missions class in the Bible College when the new semester starts in March. Sara has done an outstanding job as well and will be finished with her classes shortly after Christmas. She does a great job communicating with the people and being an encouragement to the ladies here.
On October 26th, after our church service, a part of the church roof fell in. Praise the Lord no one was hurt. With the roof being unstable, we were unable to continue meeting in the building. We found a temporary meeting place in the district’s municipal building. We did not have to pay rent and were able to meet both Sundays and Wednesdays. What a blessing! During this time, the Lord continued to bless with wonderful attendance. Several times we had over 450 people. The church was able to put on a new roof and make other renovations to the building. We made it back just in time for our 6th Anniversary Service on December 7th. It was a blessed day with over 500 people in attendance and decisions made for the cause of Christ. In order to accommodate more people, we are now having 3 Sunday morning services. Please be praying that the Lord would supply the needed funds to get our own land and building soon. Land is quite expensive in the area where we are, but we know that God is able to supply each and every need.
Josiah started walking about two weeks ago and is a master at climbing furniture. He is getting so big! Sara continues to do well carrying our second baby boy. She is due in the middle of March. The Lord is blessing in the Bible study here in our home. We usually have 6 people who come together to fellowship and study God’s Word. Please pray for Bruno, a man who visited several weeks back. He is a professor at a university here in Arequipa and needs to be saved. We love and appreciate each and every one who prays and gives to make it possible to reach more souls with the Gospel here in Peru. May the Lord give each of you a very Blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Rejoicing in the Christ of Christmas,
Robert, Sara, and Josiah Stover