A little over 54 years El Salvador church has been in existence teaching God’s word to those in Pucallpa, Peru.
For the past 3 years, Sunday mornings have started out with breakfast for approximately 100 children at 7:30 am. The meal is prepared in the homes of 2 Sunday school teachers on a rotating basis and then brought to the church as there are no kitchen facilities onsite. Children from the church are served as well as the neighborhood kids. Sunday school classes are from 8-10 am, comprised of 8 classes of children, youth and adults. Right afterwards is the main Church service beginning at 10 am and running until 12 pm. Tuesday and Thursday from 7:30 to 9:00 are worship services with lots of singing, prayer, fellowship and a short sermon.
The ravages of time are apparent and many are the needs. It is in the midst of the poorest neighborhood in Pucallpa surrounded by homes made of rotting wood and damp floors of time-harden dirt. They live close to the water’s edge of the Ucayali River and because of the close proximity to the water, the insects, well, they too live here.
Upon entering the large wooden doors to the church that read “Cristo Vive,” “Christ Lives,” you are swept up into the center of worship. It is a welcoming atmosphere filled with joy and God is definitely in the house.
The interior of the church is large and inviting with many rows of wooden pews. Looking toward the raised pulpit is their church banner printed on white poster paper that reads “ Dos Son Mejores Que Uno,” translated means, Two are Better than One.
Located adjacent to the church via a hallway are the Sunday school classrooms and at either end are two dirt lots laden with rotted timber and other items that are slated to be cleared making way for children’s play areas but in reality they will be a long time in coming. Too much debris right now to do much of anything. They have the labor, the young men of the church but no funding at this point.
Raised on a separate foundation are the bathrooms near one of the proposed play areas. We listened as Saul, one of the pastors, explained the needs of the church, from general construction, to completion of classrooms, from bathroom renovation to purchasing chairs, tables and supplies for the classroom not to mention money to sustain the food program to feed the children. We will definitely blog about their projects and needs along the way.
The corrugated tin roof over the bathroom is collapsed, the plumbing is virtually non-existent with the runoff flowing through a “waste canal” that needs immediate attention. The men’s facilities are labeled “Adán” and the women’s are called “Eva.” You got it…Adam and Eve.
There is a door leading outside of the pulpit area that opens to the hallway with classrooms made of brick walls, no doors. Steel framed open air windows let in what little air flows through from the outside. 4 classrooms house the children from 0 to 14. The room for the babies is still a work in process.
They have a discipleship class of 7-12 year olds modeled after the teachings of Billy Graham. It is a 3 month program after which they go out into the surrounding neighborhood inviting people to church!
And it’s exactly what we are on.
Living “La Gran Aventura” continually within His Mighty Grip,