Serving the Lord in the Andes Mission

June 2024

“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
–Philippians 4:6-7

Our daughter Sarah Grace recently wrote a paper on prayer. We quote part of it here for you:

It is no light thing that man, in the indigence of his soul, steeped in original sin from the very moment of Adam’s fall, should fail to be in constant communion with his Creator, as Adam was before his act of sin; but it seems yet a graver thing, that man, redeemed by Christ’s own blood, to a full and free adoption, should yet fail to be in constant communion with Him as our Savior, and God as our Father.

To pray without ceasing might seem an onerous task, but it should be the greatest joy of our lives, for it means constant communion with God. And to the Christian, that is everything. What we heard in our cradles and know in our hearts is that prayer is essential to the Christian’s life; but to the Christian, it is not that alone. It is his lifeblood, it is his crowning joy, it is his delight, it is his greatest earthly pleasure. It is the nearest we can be to heaven.

Dear Ones,

Greetings in the Name of the Lord our Savior! We praise the Lord for a safe arrival back to Santa Clara in Chile this past April after good visits in NJ & PA, Baltimore, Florida, Colombia (South America), and Santiago. When we arrived on a Friday afternoon it was a blessing to be welcomed back into our home by Isaiah and most of the brethren from our church group here. We are now in the process of recovering from furlough. Most of the tiredness was gone after a night back in our own beds, and Paul preached the Lord’s Day sermon after two nights. Yet we are still working on unpacking, getting our pickup in good and legal working order, repairing our little auto, getting phones & books in order, organizing, taking care of the property, and preparing for winter, among other tasks needing to be completed. Progress is slow as we are back to a full schedule of activities on the Lord’s Day and Wednesdays since the beginning of May (and all the preparation preaching and teaching that means). We are also excited to have begun a 2nd weekly prayer meeting in the morning on the Lord’s Day (prior to worship), especially to ask the Lord’s gracious work amongst us as we meet for worship and mutual encouragement & edification on His day!

In Santiago we had a wonderful overnight stay with one of the families that has been connecting with our daughter Sarah Grace for online English classes. They had visited us for the family camp we hosted in our home some time ago and it was great to see them again and get to know them better. We also met several Christian families who invited us to visit their home education cooperative, where Geneva and Isaiah had served for a week in April, giving various lessons and devotionals. These are friends of our friend Pastor Rodrigo of San Pedro. Then the Co-op’s host graciously transported us all the way back to Santa Clara the next day for a special blessing! We also expect to host our new friends here (the Co-op’s host family offive) for a visit in July.

After a year of many travels, we again look back and marvel at all the Lord did for us and for the church here in Santa Clara! We give many thanks to Him for keeping everyone in the group together and progressing in the harmony of their Christian fellowship with one another as they have continued meeting for prayer, classes, and worship each week as they patiently awaited our return. The Lord enabled them to get over a couple humps of difficulty during the past year.

Please pray for the Lord’s continued guidance and good progress in organization and otherwise for our mission church. We are hoping to offer some membership classes soon and begin forming a membership for the church plant. Please pray also for the discipleship and preparation of future officers for the church and for the men who regularly attend services with us: José Luis, Juan, Elías, Rodrigo, Francisco & Julio; for their wives also: Rocio, Susan, Jessica, Michelle & Marjorie. While you are at it, you could also pray for godly wives for Julio, Isaiah, Josiah and the up and coming younger men in the church as well, and godly husbands for the many young ladies, all according to the Lord’s perfect will, of course! Please pray for the children of the families attending our worship services (in addition to our own): Rebecca, Josefa, Samuel, Felipe, Paloma, Juan, Aurora, Lemuel, Julianna, David, Pablo, Josías, Nehemías, Joaquín & Isaac, plus three that are in the queue! Please pray for the expectant mothers too.

Jessica’s cousin Janet is expecting in late July, and Janet’s family would like to move out of the city they are in and live in our area. Please pray for this needy husband (Edgar) & wife and their two other children, that they will come and receive what they need the most: the Spirit of Christ’s sanctifying work through the Gospel. Jessica will be helping a great deal with the new child. Several other families appear to be fruitful ground for a further Gospel witness: please pray for Jocelyn, María & Berta, Rubén, Sol, Denise, Renata, Grisel & their families. Grisel is a friend of Jessica’s, whom we just met, who is in the process of moving into our area with her family, currently renting a place on the other side of Santa Clara and looking for a building site. Please continue to pray for Rosita M. & Alonso & their family (Alfredo, Carmen, etc.) and our other neighbors as

Joaquín (Connor) & Isaac are back (in our home) and, praise the Lord, we have seen some excellent Christian growth in them. Connor is now in our “home university” and looking into the possibility of an internship in the U.S. Please keep them in prayer as they continue their memory work and think upon the Lord’s great revelation in His Word. There are also Daniel & Karen, who have just had their second child; Victor & Connie, Frank & Denise, Ismael & Angela, all young couples from the area who are friendly.

OUR LORD’S DAY MEETINGS (& 1st installment on our new worship home!)
Please pray for our weekly preaching & classes. We currently have a Lord’s day morning prayer meeting, morning worship, classes in the afternoon and an evening worship service, along with fellowship around lunch and supper on the Lord’s day; and a blessed midweek prayer meeting. Please pray for the Lord’s guidance, wisdom, and provision of the place where He would have us to meet as we have currently still been meeting in our home. Praise the Lord, He has provided 20 pews for us through our friends in San Pedro! Please pray for the place to put and use them!

We are very thankful that brother John Hansen from Greenville graciously brought us our harp and cello, and some Bibles, and has helped Julianna (Jessica & Elías’ daughter) travel to the U.S. where she is now with our daughters Geneva, Anna & Sarah. Julianna got to visit Hope Presbyterian Church in SC, a Confederate Museum, the Ark & Creation Museum in KY, Covenant of Grace Church in Missouri, a huge Lego convention & the Church of Christian Liberty in Illinois, and heads back to Greenville, SC, with Ann & Sarah to help with VBS there. From there the girls are preparing to return to Chile in July. Also, their friends Mercy & Evangeline from PA are coming to Santa Clara for three weeks, and are preparing some crash English & Music classes.

Please pray also for our son Josiah who has been an assistant teacher for 1st grade at a Christian school in Santiago and his Bible & memory work students. Please pray for his upcoming trip to Arica (2½-hour flight) to help in (our colleagues) the Bjurs’ winter camp program July 12-20, during his winter break. Isaiah, Josiah & Geneva have also made several trips to minister to young friends from Pastor Rodrigo’s church who have been struggling on account of worldly friendships and unbelief. Please pray for the young people with whom they have met, that the Lord would graciously grant faith & repentance, as well as true wisdom to the parents for the discipling of their children.

Through our dear friend David in Texas, we also recently spoke with a young lady in California, Elizabeth, who has a large heart for Biblical missions and evangelism. Please pray for her too as she seeks the Lord’s direction for continuing to serve Him. As we contemplated our conversation, we came to hope that we may soon be enabled to begin some regular evangelistic Bible studies with the many young people we have come to know in Santa Clara and Bulnes. Please pray about this!

Thank you for your prayers and support! In joyful service to our Redeemer we are.

Yours for Gospel Missions,
Paul and Cheryl Durand and family