Again, apologies for not writing in a while. I know I sound like a broken record, but everything has been insanely busy lately - in a good way, of course! The ministry, for one thing, has been very productive lately. One thing that has made it especially more productive is that the branch has organized the metropolitan witnessing initiative here in Chinandega!
We were first notified about this a couple of months ago. All regular pioneers in our circuit were invited to apply and participate. After all the applications were filed, we had a meeting with all the pioneers in the circuit who would be participating to go over how it would be done. Our circuit overseer made it clear to us that the purpose of this is not to simply hand out literature, but to start Bible studies! With that goal in mind, everything officially started up in January.
Me with Grethel, a sister in our circuit, covering the exhibit in the mercadito, a little market and bus terminal.
We have three exhibits on display in highly populated areas of Chinandega - one in the downtown market, one in the mercadito, and another in el bisne, a huge section of town full of little shops and businesses.
Roberto manning the exhibit in the downtown market.
We cover the exhibits in three-hour shifts: 8 AM to 11 AM, 11 AM to 2 PM, and 2 PM to 5 PM. Each pioneer marked down which days and times they would be able to participate, so everybody has been able to have a share.
As far as how many people stop and talk, it varies each day. Some days, we barely have any time to take a breath, and others, hardly anyone stops at all! However, from what I've done and from what I've heard, usually about ten books and ten magazines are placed during each three-hour shift, on average. Very nice to see!
Manuel, a brother from Corinto, and I covering the display in the downtown market.
We've definitely had some nice experiences so far! I think I've started about three or four studies in total. After talking to a man who requested a study, I began writing down his contact information - which we then pass onto whichever congregation covers that territory. When I asked him what time in the morning would be best to visit him, he told me, "Any time. I always have time for discussing and learning more about the Bible. It's the best thing I could be doing!"
My friend Makeda was working the mercadito display, and one man approached them saying that he used to study, but was unable to continue due to various circumstances. After seeing the exhibit, however, he requested that someone start studying with him again!
A man reading a Good News brochure that he grabbed from the display today.
One thing that has surprised me is the overwhelming number of people who have requested the Young People Ask books. I think I've placed more of those than the Bible Teach book! I've had a lot of good conversations with kids and adults about those books. It makes sense that it would be successful here. Many kids here are kind of let on the loose, in a way, so it's no wonder that they're seeking that guidance. A lot of parents have said that they love it as well.
My preaching partner, William, speaking to a man who is currently studying. He came by today to pick up the new magazines for this month. He already has a copy of the Young People Ask: Volume 2 book. He said that he absolutely loves it and that it has helped his family a lot. Actually he said that it is "super bueno!"
A triciclo driver who asked for a magazine and then requested that we take his photo!
This has been a very refreshing form of witnessing. You can tell that the preaching work is really being sped up, and this helps you to feel even more at the forefront of that work. It's been a great privilege to participate in it, and it is certainly being blessed!
Hope you all are well.