Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Where is your treasure?


Just Monday, I was preparing to come into town in order to do some emails and phone calls. As Loren and I were preparing to pull out of the gate, we realized that no one was there to open the gate for us. I quickly got out of the truck in order to open the gate, and then slid back behind the driver seat in order to pull out. I started forward, but as the truck was about half-way through, an amazingly strong gust of wind suddenly caught the gate, and with tremendous force, slammed the gate into the side of the pick-up truck. I pulled out the rest of the way, and then got out to assess the damage.
If you are like me, you would immediately start trying to place the blame somewhere. Either on the person who is paid to open the gate, or on the gate manufacturer, or on anyone who might be within 100 yards.
But as I drove away, the only one I could seem to blame was the one who is Master of the Waves and Wind. While the damage is not drastic, I was still quite unhappy, and charged the creator with damaging my pickup truck.
As I continued driving, however, my maker reminded me of several things.
1. He made me, and I don't deserve a nice pick-up truck.
2. What I do deserve is hell and eternal punishment.
3. He gave me the truck.
4. I, and the truck, are actually both HIS.
5. He is in control of every gust of wind.
6. If He wants dents in his truck, that is his prerogative.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Location, Location, Location

We have spent countless hours and numerous days looking all around the city of Puerto Maldonado. The goal was to find a place that would be suitable as a "base station" for the tribal ministry. Ideally, we wanted someplace which would also be large enough for a church, and perhaps even a small area for volleyball etc.
We found numerous properties right in town which were perfect... except the sellers all thought that their properties were worth over $100,000 per acre!
On the other hand, we found many properties outside of town which we were reasonably price, but they were waaaay out of town.
So we kept looking, and praying... and God provided.
We found a property which, once the bridge is complete, will be less than 2 miles from the center of town!
It is nearly 1/2 acre, and the price was the by far the most reasonable that we have found. It even has a little construction already.

Here's a frontal view of the "colonial mansion."


And now we see the "great room" which happens to be the only room besides the kitchen.



Here's a rear view of the "palatial estate" complete with the pig-sty in the foreground



It even has running water, if you're willing to pump...it's only about 20 steps from the back of the house.
Incidently, the out-house is really out too. That's it right next to the pump



Finally, here's the back of the property, which has a number of different tropical fruit trees.
Thank you so much for your prayers. We'll look forward to seeing you down here soon.

bug bites and cow heart

Well, the bugs got me, but I got the cow, so who really won? I'm not sure.
I had the privilege of taking Keith Brock, missionary in Tacna, down to the jungle city of Puerto Maldonado for a few days. We saw a number of interesting things while there.


This is the very first four-wheel-drive motorcycle that I've seen

This man, Luis Cachique was actually saved and baptized under Mr. Robert Whatley's minister about 40 years ago.

The Lord gave me the privilege of witnessing to Amanda, and see her profess faith in Christ. Afterwards she exclaimed several times "I'm so happy!" Praise the Lord!

In Pto Maldonado, the motorcycle is by far the most common means of transportation. Seeing this motorcycle reminded me Psalm 22:12 ...bulls of BASHAN have beset me round.

Friday, August 8, 2008

life


The streets here are a little different than in the USA... Our truck had one of the wheels swallowed by a large ditch right in the middle of the street. Thank God for 4-wheel-drive, it climbed right out. You should've seen the other ditch though.

You'll notice the cows conspicuous in the center of the photo: this is the plaza when we were getting ready to start our open air meeting.


These young people (myself included) are hiking up to see some ruins near Cusco, where I was supposed to give a short message. This was before the drizzle, or the rain, or the downpour, or the hail, which all came later, and made for some very damp dormitories, and a strange wet dog smell....

This is the typical dress you will see in Cusco, they were all waiting in line for something early in the morning...it's hard to say exactly what.

More recently, both Loren and I are teaching courses in the Bible college here. Pray for us....and our students.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

A Cultural Moment

Technically, while it may only be a moment for you, the reader, the cultural moment here is now nearly two days and still running.
One thing which is common in foreign countries and uncommon in the United States is the "strike". Here it is called a "paro" or "huelga" and usually they are carried out on a local basis. The cause is often the increase of prices on a common-commodity such as guinea pigs, but can also be related to something less important like gasoline.
This particular strike is going on because a group of people on the other side of the country are being denied their pensions. Can you imagine the implications for Detroit and the airlines if these ideas catch on in the U.S.? While few people here in Cusco know anyone directly affected by the retirement problems in Lima, they are striking with the best of them.
What exactly does a Peruvian strike involve, you may ask? Well, it usually means that people pile rocks and trees across the roads to paralyze all traffic. However, sometimes it is more severe.
Yesterday, I tried twice to take my pregnant little wife home where she could rest. After weaving through rocks, tires, trees, stumps, and car parts for about 20 minutes, we arrived at a point where a number of drunken men where physically enforcing the roadblock: not allowing anyone to pass, and throwing small stones at anyone who attempted to get by. We heard about cars with broken windshields, and they were even rumors of an overturned vehicle. We were forced to return to the seminary, or face the wrath of Huayllabamba.

Yesterday our co-worker, Ken Loveall, picked up some guests from the airport in the morning, but was unable to travel all day. They decided to make a run for it at night, but were accosted by an angry rock-wielding mob. When the mob realized that he would not be easily deterred, they began hefting large rocks at the vehicle, and succeeded in breaking out the rear window of the truck. All we could say to our visitors was "welcome to Peru".

Oh, by the way, if the violent village of Huayllabamba sounds familiar, it's because that is the totally unevangelized town where we are trying to start a Bible-study.

Monday, July 7, 2008

July Fourth!


Loren did a lot of decorating


We also did some grilling...

but only after some very "redneck" adaptations involving a lot of duct-tape

We had a great time with the other American missionaries as we ate, sang the national anthem, and pledged to the flag!

What a great reminder of the freedoms and blessings that God has given to our country , which allow the USA to send missionaries all over the world where many such freedoms are not enjoyed. God bless America!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Marvelous May and Joyful June

The front bucket seat of a pickup truck is a surprisingly comfortable place to sleep, when need be. This was one of the first thoughts to amble through my brain at the early hour I awakened. Also coming to mind were the memories that I was high in the Peruvian Andes in a little town called Accha for the purpose of evangelism and edification, and a good sleeping bag is a necessity at these altitudes. It was an exciting morning. We were able to give a Bible to a man who literally wept upon receiving his and to his son who hugged his Bible to his chest in eager anticipation to begin training for the seminary where we occasionally teach. Please pray for these two to be faithful in ministry.May and June were incredibly busy months. We have had enough exciting news to fill a prayer letter every week, but unfortunately we are still experiencing the dreaded email woes. During the month of May, we were privileged to host five groups, including Dr. David Shumate, evangelists Brent and Scott Sivnksty, my parents and sister, the McLanahans (our field director), and evangelist Randy Chovan and family.
During June we kept quite busy ministering with brother Chovan. We were thrilled by the arrival of Rachel Tarvin, a new BMM missionary, dear friends Pat and Wendy Campbell who are teaching two classes in the seminary, and Julie Thompson, intern. Please pray for those who are ministering here and for permanent laborers for the fruitful harvest.
We logged many kilometers on the truck these months as we traveled through snow-covered mountain peaks and lush green jungle valleys, preaching the Gospel and passing out tracts all the way. We have been amazed at God’s grace in opening doors for numerous open-air gatherings, family conferences, youth rallies, sports outreaches, Bible-clubs, evangelistic meetings, and church revivals.
During a workshop on stress where I translated for brother Chovan in Calca, a town about 15 minutes from our village, we had about 15 professions of faith! Please pray for the follow-up work that has been started. The next day we presented microscopes to a private school, gave a gospel message, and were blessed to lead the director and his wife to the Lord! Please pray for Hector and Milagros to grow as they are being discipled. We have also been training the seminary students in evangelism and were thrilled as two seminary girls were able to lead two young monolingual Quechua ladies to the Lord in a mountain town called Huilloq about an hour away, where we were having a one day outreach. Please pray for the seminary students’ and new believers’ growth.
During one church revival in a mountain community called Surimana, we had five professions of faith. One young man and his wife are planning on coming to the seminary for Bible training. Please pray that their faith will not be choked by thorns or found depthless upon the rocks. June 24 is a famous day in Cusco known as Inti-Raymi. This is a day when the Inca nation gathered in the Cusco fortress called Sacsayhuaman in order to worship the sun-god. Up until about five years ago, they still physically sacrificed a llama to their false deity. We were able to give out well over 5,000 tracts to the vast throngs of people who gathered that day. Please pray that the Word will not return void and that all glory will go to the SON of God rather than the sun-god.We have been going roughly every other week to a neighboring village to have open-air meetings where, as far as we know, there has never been an evangelical work of any kind. We praise our great God for His marvelous work in saving a man named Victor Rodriguez. It was thrilling to meet for our first discipleship and find out that instead of reading the assigned first chapter of John, he had already read six chapters in the first 24 hours despite a heavy work schedule. Please pray for the continuing growth of Victor. Finally, we have numerous neighbors in the community to whom we have been witnessing. Please pray especially for Efrain, Primo, Hari, Fredy, Wilson, and Fredi to be saved.
Thank you so much for your prayers and support. Because of email problems, we have a new email which is: fitzgeralds2peru at gmail.com Please email us if possible.
In Christ alone, Buddy and Loren

Thursday, June 26, 2008


See that "little tiny bit of snow on top of the mountain? That's actually several huge ice fields."

We loaded up on the trucks, and headed up as far as we could (which was definitely not far enough)

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On the way up, it looked so close!

Here's the closest thing we could find to find a flat camping spot.

Here you get a better view of our knife-edge camping spot among the Andes peaks.

We took this trip in order to disciple the young people, and have a number of preaching opportunities while admiring God's amazing handiwork.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Peruvian Countryside


Above is one of the churches that we visited. They have seen tremendous growth recently!

This is the Catholic church building in Huayllabamba, where we are holding open-air meetings.

These are some of the views on the way to minister in our area.

Keep on Prayin'


We've been having open air campaigns in a little, unevangelized town nearby. Please keep praying! We had a man named Victor saved there this past Friday!

We were able to hand out a number of spanish gospel-oriented Bible stories. Thank you Lord, for providing them through Mark Ring.

By God's grace, we were able to distribute a number of Bibles to new believers...


...while carrying on evangelistic campaigns in several outlying areas.
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Beautiful doors, but they are not the path to eternal life...
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