In God we boast all the day long, and praise thy name for ever. Selah. Psalm 44:8
Dear Brethren in the faith, we greet you in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ. We trust you are well, enjoying the blessings of the Lord even in difficult times, we know that our great sovereign God has everything under His control and that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Brethren, we are always grateful for each of you becasue of your valuable support to us, especially for your prayers and financial help.
As it has been for so long now, due to the pandemic, we are still limited in our activities with meetings at home by Zoom, making phone calls, and doing some sporadic visits. Presently, we are quarantined and only allowed to go out twice a week. Yet, despite the complex situation, everything has worked well, as the church is more active and united than ever, as the brethren want to work together in their service to the Lord, and families want to participate in Sunday School (we are studying the Westminster Shorter Cathechism) and other services during the week.
We also want to tell you that we had the blessing by participating with Zoom in a Holy Week Congress. There were 79 participating in these beautiful services that had the theme about the end times. The praises touched our hearts and filled them with love and praise to our God. In fact, due to the distance and the cost of traveling from Arica to central Chile, it would have been impossible for us to travel and participate in this beautiful congress. But, our Lord had prepared all of this and had given us this wonderful opportunity through Zoom. There was a space for the presentation of each church from Arica to Puerto Montt, and we could see the growth of the work in Chile. It was a very emotional time.
God is also to be thanked for the Women’s Society of our church. These ladies are always very motivated in their support of the work of the Lord with prayers and care for the needy. They meet every Wednesday at 6 pm. They have just finished studying the women of the Bible, and now, once a month, Janeth will be teaching them on “Women after the Heart of God” (rearing children).
On May 7 our church ladies participated (by Zoom) in an activity of MUPREF, which is Presbyterian Fundamentalist women in the Northern Zone. The group is made up of our three local churches: “El Manantial” and “Berea” in Arica, and “El Sembrador of Iquique”. This meeting was one of many, and they have planned three more during the year 2021. It is a good time of joy and sisterhood, with several more visits that we hope will draw them closer together in the other gatherings.
On Saturday, May 8, Jonathan had a meeting of the leaders of the Presbytery and Bible teachers. These meetings are a blessing as we are always learning and reviewing the right operation of our Presbytery and its members.
As Mother’s Day approached, we wanted to highlight the most faithful of our senior sisters, who because of their age they could not join us with Zoom. So, four sisters from our church were appointed to bring a floral arrangement to their homes. There was great joy and thankfulness expressed. The recipients were: Sisters Isidora Mamani, Olga López, Juana Maldonado and Sister Elena Reyes. Sister Reyes (pictured right), is 90 years old and suffers from diabetes. It is because she is really unable to move about that she has been unable to attend church for a long time.
Dear brethren we are so thankful to the Lord because Janeth had her annual check-up, and all her tests, endoscopy and scan, went well – for which we thank God. In addition, the Oncologist is surprised that despite everything that happened with her chemotherapy and radiation therapy treatment, she is in relatively good health. We know that it is only God’s work, and that in His sovereign will He has granted her health and life. We praise our Almighty God!
Brethren, please pray for Jonathan as he has had some severe pain in his right knee. As we write this letter, he is currently awaiting the results of an MRI. Jonathan is trusting that it is not something severe, yet is always trusting in the Lord.
In addition to praying for the progress of the Northern Seminary, we are pleased to report that two new students have enrolled: Sister Juana Escalona and Sister Juana Barrientos. Please continue to pray for the teachers: Sister Melody Bjur, Pastor Jim Bjur and Pastor Jonathan Jara. Pray that the Lord may give us good health and wisdom in this ministry.
My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. Psalm 62: 5
Your Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Rev. Jonathan, Janeth, Ruth Meylí, Jonathan Edward and Melissa Jara