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All articles in category South America

Missionary Spotlight-Christmas at Bellavista
December 2001
Colombia

Missionary Spotlight-Christmas at Bellavista

Christmas conjures up pictures of Christmas carols, bright lights and tea around a crackling fire. But Bellavista prison! What a nightmare! Colombia, a land torn apart by evil men: drug dealers, assassins and guerrillas. Bellavista was once the most feared prison in Colombia, where notorious criminals ruled. Two inmates died violently every day within its walls. Anarchy reigned. Blood flowed, and nobody cared. Or so it seemed. Worst time ‘Christmas was the worst time of the year’, one inmate told me. ‘Everyone takes inventory of what they have lost. I hate being imprisoned and separated from my family. It’s so lonely and sad. I tried...

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Missionary Spotlight – From Brazil with love
September 2001
Brazil

Missionary Spotlight – From Brazil with love

Portuguese is still spoken widely in Portugal’s former colonies such as Brazil and Mozambique. With this in mind, the Trinitarian Bible Society (TBS) undertook — around the time Mozambique gained independence in 1975 — to produce a major revision of the Scriptures in Portuguese.   Updated edition   The task of providing Portuguese Scriptures to Africa was first undertaken in 1837, when Rev. Thomas Boys worked on the project, which was completed by 1847. But 100 years later it was recognised, particularly by those ministering in Brazil, that a new, updated edition was needed. A team in Brazil took on this task. They made corrections...

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MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT- Saturday afternoon
December 2000
Peru

MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT- Saturday afternoon

It’s Saturday afternoon. The minibus is loaded up and we set off into the country south of Arequipa to take a children’s meeting in the Pueblo Joven(new township) of San Pedro de Tiabaya. But this was not to be a normal Saturday afternoon children’s meeting.   Arriving at the community hall, we found the children thronging as usual round its doors. But as we entered we were confronted with a small group of mourners gathered round a tiny, crudely constructed, white casket. Funeral   Carmen, a young girl of no more than twenty, was a regular attender at our meetings. Her two-year-old son, Jaime, had...

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October 2000
Peru

Missionary Spotlight – Fact File – Peru

Fact File – Peru Area: 496,225 square miles. Neighbouring countries: Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia and Chile. Environment: An arid coastal plain extends down Peru. Most industries are concentrated in this plain. Parallel and to the east of it is the upland sierra, which includes the rugged Andes Mountains. Further east is the western part of the tropical Amazon Basin. The Andes have some of the highest mountains in the world, notably Huascaran (22,205 ft). Population: 26.7 million. Life expectancy: 70 years. Capital: Lima (nearly 7 million). Other cities: Arequipa (1.2 million), Trujillo and Chiclayo. Main port (for Lima) is Callao. Ethnic groups: Amerindian (descendants of...

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MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT- The Evangelical Church in Peru
October 2000
Peru

MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT- The Evangelical Church in Peru

Peru is the third largest country in South America, with a population of 26 million. In the distant past, most Peruvians lived in mountainous areas, but during the twentieth century many migrated to the coast or colonised the jungle regions. Peru’s main language is Spanish, although many still speak Quechua. Until the sixteenth century the name of Christ was unknown in this land. When the Spaniards ‘discovered’ Peru, they imposed their Roman Catholic faith on the Incas. The native population responded by blending their pagan beliefs with Roman Catholicism, forming a ‘Christo-paganism’. This is still the basic religion in many rural areas. Hard work For...

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MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT- Church planting in Arequipa
October 2000
Peru

MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT- Church planting in Arequipa

Arequipa is a city situated in the south of Peru. With its surrounding provinces, its population numbers over one million. It was founded in 1540 by the Spanish conquistador, Francisco Pizarro.   Arequipa has been called ‘the second Rome’, since for centuries it has been dominated by Spanish culture and Roman Catholicism. It is also called ‘the white city’ because of the conspicuous white stone which adorns both its old colonial buildings and its more modern offices and apartments. Arequipa is surrounded by three imposing volcanos. One, called Misti, is still active. Although there has not been a major eruption for over a century, the...

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MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT
October 2000
Peru

MISSIONARY SPOTLIGHT

Saturday afternoon It’s Saturday afternoon. The minibus is loaded up and we set off into the country south of Arequipa to take a children’s meeting in the Pueblo Joven(new township) of San Pedro de Tiabaya. But this was not to be a normal Saturday afternoon children’s meeting.   Arriving at the community hall, we found the children thronging as usual round its doors. But as we entered we were confronted with a small group of mourners gathered round a tiny, crudely constructed, white casket. Funeral   Carmen, a young girl of no more than twenty, was a regular attender at our meetings. Her two-year-old son,...

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Missionary Spotlight – The Biblical Seminary of Colombia
November 1999
Colombia

Missionary Spotlight – The Biblical Seminary of Colombia

Perched on the side of a mountain, the Biblical Seminary of Colombia is afforded a magnificent view of the city of Medellín. The population of the city and its environs has reached three million people. At some 4000 feet above sea level, and quite near the equator, the climate is a balmy springtime all the year round. The vegetation is lush, abounding in flowers. The campus of the seminary provides quietness and peace. The city is a place of immense beauty, bustling with people of unusual business acumen. Unfortunately, it has also become the context of widespread violence. Persecution The seminary was founded in 1944....

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Missionary Spotlight – Will we ever see them again?
October 1999
Colombia

Missionary Spotlight – Will we ever see them again?

Nancy, Tania and Patti watched in horror through their tears, as the heavily armed guerrillas led their husbands away into the jungle. ‘Will we ever see them again?’ they asked. They are still asking that question seven years later!   Dave and Nancy Mankins, and Rick and Patti Tenenoff were instructing a group of believers in the Kuna Indian village of Pucuro in Panama, close to the Colombian border. Mark and Tania Rich were recent additions to the missionary team. On 31 January 1993 the men were taken into Colombia by the guerrillas. A ransom demand for five million dollars was made. New Tribes Mission...

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Missionary Spotlight – The Jaws of Hell
October 1999
Colombia

Missionary Spotlight – The Jaws of Hell

Before the World Soccer Cup in June 1994, the Colombian team captain was interviewed. ‘Our objective when we go down to the field for a match is to give our people a moment of happiness’, he said.   The fleeting exhilaration of such a moment was obliterated. Only two weeks into the Cup, a stunned world learned of Andres Escobar’s violent death for giving away an own-goal as Colombia played against the USA. The tentacles of evil reach into every aspect of life in Colombia. The ‘death culture’ reigns. Stop-light killings   At a stoplight, hired assassins roar up to a bus which has just...

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Missionary Spotlight- Colombia: Churches and Context
October 1999
Colombia

Missionary Spotlight- Colombia: Churches and Context

Roman Catholicism came to this part of South America during the sixteenth-century Spanish conquest. Evangelical Protestantism only began to make noticeable inroads after the 1840s. Calvinistic and Presbyterian missionary influences were quite prominent in those small beginnings, with input from both the United States and Britain. Church growth Since the 1950s significant growth has occurred in the Evangelical community. This has had some general effects on Colombian society, including the fact that Christians have founded political parties and become members of traditional political groups. The influence of Jaime Ortiz Hurtado, former Rector of the Seminario Bíblico de Colombia (Medellín), on the political and legal scene...

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October 1999
Colombia

Missionary Spotlight

Fact File   Area       – 441,000 square miles. Neighbouring countries   – Colombia straddles the top of South America, with Panama, Venezuela, Brazil, Peru and Ecuador as its near neighbours. The Isthmus of Panama connects into Colombia’s north-west, so that Colombia has separate Pacific and Caribbean coastlines. Environment   – A wide variety of terrain and climate, ranging from tropical, coastal lowlands in the west, to the cool Andes mountains in the centre, and tropical lowland forests in the east. On the Caribbean coast, the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta rises to over 19000 ft. Some mountains are volcanically active. Bogota, the...

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