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People Who Forcefully Advance Towards Heaven Through Prayer, Pbedience and Patience

  • Nation | Peru
  • Date | April 01, 2006
It is surprising to me to see our brothers and sisters here in Peru worshiping and praising God devoutly. ‘How did we find so many brothers and sisters in such a short time in a foreign country whose culture is totally different?’ It would have been impossible unless God helped us.

The Church of God in Lima, Peru, was given an award in the third quarter of last year and recently received the great blessing of building a temple. For this we give thanks to heavenly Father and Mother.

More than 98% of Peru’s population is Catholic, and various images are set up everywhere, such as in private houses, public parks and so on. So it is not easy for Peruvians to accept other religions. Still, among them are our lost brothers and sisters who are eagerly and joyfully waiting to become the children of God.

Sister Emy graduated from Catholic middle and high schools taught by nuns, and kept following the Catholic customs even after her marriage. However, she came to receive the truth and realize the Holy Spirit and the Bride, and her heart was burning and she fervently preached the truth to her family. She said that she could be courageous because her family was so precious to her. Her courage pleased God and she could lead her son and daughter, elder sister, nephew, younger brother and recently her mother to Zion. Her mother lived in a forest area called Iquitos, which is one day away from Lima by bus. To share the gift of salvation with her mother, Sister Emy brought her to Lima and lived with her. She began to preach the words of truth to her one by one. Her mother denied the truth at first, but finally she came to Zion, giving up her lifelong faith as a Catholic. It was the power of God’s absolute word and her daughter’s earnest prayer. The sister’s courage and faith in God led her family to the way of salvation. Seeing her, my heart also burned with enthusiasm.

Let me tell you about Deacon Shobert. He diligently preaches the feasts of God, regarding them as precious. He has led many souls to God, by telling them the importance of the feasts; more than 20 people attend the Lima Zion: 13 of them are his family members including his wife, children and relatives, and the rest are his co-workers. He is still so fervent to preach to his co-workers. He is in charge of some members of the Church. In February, more than 10 members were added to his group and as a result, he was awarded at the monthly awards ceremony held in the Lima Church. His zeal and enthusiasm surely pleases God. I’m also happy to see him.

Besides them, all other members of the Lima Church are also diligently preaching the gospel to their families and neighbors. Their earnest efforts brought forth much fruit to Zion every day. At first we had worship services in a private house, and we moved to a bigger place and then to larger places several more times. Later, we needed a bigger temple, but we couldn’t find any proper building for a temple in Lima. The number of brothers and sisters kept increasing, and the temple was too small for us. We earnestly prayed to God. After six months, God allowed us to move to a new place.

ⓒ 2006 WATV
It was a three-story building, and we used the second and third floors. That place was big enough for about 120 people to hold worship services. Seeing many vacant spaces in Zion, we decided to find the children of God more diligently. Before long, the temple was filled with God’s people. The number of the brothers and sisters increased to over 300, and soon about 400 members held worship services within the Church and even in the corridor.

Too many people were gathered in a small place, and it brought some inconveniences. The slate roof was not insulated, so in summer the hot heat was transmitted directly onto the heads of brothers and sisters. The water supply was cut off frequently because Lima lies in the center of Peru’s coastal desert area. So it was difficult to bring the temperature down. During the feasts, the temple was too small for all the Church members to dine together, so male adults and young adults ate standing outside the Church, sharing the fragrances of Zion.

During worship, our brothers and sisters were packed like sardines in the temple. Overcoming hard situations, they attended the worship services to receive God’s spiritual blessings in heaven. They are truly the heavenly children who love God’s commands more than pure gold.

They preached even harder to fill the temple with more and more brothers and sisters. They believed that the only thing they could do was to move God’s heart to allow them to have a new temple.

Our preaching with one mind brought us much fruit. A brother dealing in apples preached to his customers coming to buy apples, and those taking taxies preached to the taxi drivers, and the taxi drivers who had received the truth preached to their passengers. Every day, beautiful souls came into Zion. We were filled with overwhelming joy. Then we could understand how much God would be pleased when His lost children were found.

By the earnest fervor of the brothers and sisters, more and more people came to Zion. I was worried about their safety because the building where our Zion occupied was too old. We prayed to God even harder.

ⓒ 2006 WATV
Then we found a place which looked like a parking lot. Though the roof was made of straws like a hut, the space was quite a bit bigger. So we decided to move there. We replaced the roof with plastic, and built up the walls. We resided there for a year.

Especially in summer we had hard times. As the plastic roof didn’t emanate heat to the outside like a vinyl house, we could hardly breathe when we stepped inside the Church. Though the temple was more spacious than before, we had to fight against extreme heat.

One day, some brothers said to me, “Among our Church members there are some who are construction workers and some who have experience in it. How about building a temple by ourselves?” They felt so sad when they saw brothers and sisters suffering from the heat and viewed new comers being disappointed by the poor conditions and going back without receiving grace.

As time went on, our earnest prayers were finally answered and we were allowed to build a temple through the grace of God. We gave thanks to God, shedding tears of joy and hugging each other.

From that time on, all the members began to build the temple with one mind. They built the walls of the temple until late at night. When I told them to stop working today and start again tomorrow, they sped up, saying, “We should finish what we’ve planned for today, so that things may go smoothly tomorrow and the temple can be completed quickly.” There were no decent lights; they busily did the construction work, moving small electric lights here and there.

While the temple was being built, some brothers and sisters had an opportunity to visit Korea and receive lots of blessings. 19 brothers and sisters, including some from the 2nd Lima Church, visited Korea and surprisingly, they all became good gospel workers. Those who had been passive in their faith became so fervent that they could not hold back the Word for themselves alone.

They continuously shared the fragrances of Zion with other brothers and sisters. They conveyed two things. One of them was about Mother’s love. They said, “Mother always prays for Her children and we cannot forget the love of Mother who takes care of us every day.” Seeing their faces, I could feel how much they missed Mother. Those who were moved by their words made a commitment to preach Mother’s love to many people. The other was about Korean brothers and sisters’ love. They said, “Brothers and sisters in Korea truly love one another, thinking of others before themselves. They live in a manner worthy of being called God’s children. We should follow the examples of the Korean brothers and sisters.”

The changed behaviors and attitudes of the brothers and sisters, who had visited Korea, moved all the other members of the Lima Church. While we were preaching the gospel with one mind, the temple was completed at last. It was a beautiful three-story building. On February 12, we held the Sabbath day worship for the first time in the new temple.

ⓒ 2006 WATV
One sister shed tears, walking up the stairs. She gave thanks to God over and over again, saying that she was so overwhelmed to see the beautiful temple. On that day, all brothers and sisters shed tears, overflowing with joy, walking around the temple. They cried with joy for the completion of the new temple, thinking of what they had gone through; they’d had a hard time fighting against heat and standing the noise, and they’d grieved over those who just went back, being disappointed with the small temple. Our brothers and sisters kept going up and down the stairs, saying that they could not believe that they were in the new temple.

Another sister said that it was like a dream, asking me if this temple was really our Zion. Many people received God on that day. Baptizing them and listening to the brothers and sisters’ singing, I was deeply overwhelmed.

We all know that this beautiful temple is given to us through the sacrifice of Father and Mother. So we give thanks to Father and Mother over and over again.

The other good news is that the brothers and sisters here in Lima, Peru, are also devoting themselves to overseas gospel work. To fulfill the great task of overseas evangelism─the Holy Spirit Movement ‘Come and See,’ which was proclaimed at the Feast of Tabernacles last year, three couples left for Ecuador. They found many brothers and sisters, and as a result the Church was built there in December. A couple of them moved to Piura, near the border with Ecuador, and they are now earnestly preaching the gospel to find our lost brothers and sisters. The Lima Church also branched out in Arequipa, and the Venezuela Church was established last January; many people are coming to Zion, praising God our Savior in the age of the Holy Spirit.

A young adult member, who came from Korea as a self-supporting gospel worker, preached here for about three months and moved to Ecuador to help with the gospel work. She is preaching the gospel there diligently every day, setting a good example for others. I believe that all who strive to preach Father and Mother’s love are so fervent for the gospel like the sister.

The gospel in South America began in Peru, and it has been preached in every country except Uruguay and Paraguay. A couple from the 2nd Lima Church is now preaching the gospel in Uruguay, so there remains only one country, Paraguay, where the gospel has not yet reached. Our hope is to quickly finish the gospel in South America and go out into Middle America and Europe. We are still lacking so many things, but we believe that our dream will surely come true if we pray to God earnestly. Think of how the gospel of the new covenant has been preached all over the world. It began with the sacrifice of our Father─the One from the east prophesied in the Bible.

Whenever we feel weary and discouraged, we think of the path of sacrifice that Father and Mother have walked. Then nothing is regarded as difficult. We will obey whatever God tells us to do, always filled with confidence.

We give thanks to our heavenly Father and Mother for giving us the hope for heaven and the joy of endurance and unity. Please pray for the Peru Church so that the temple will soon be filled.
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