The majority of Guam’s local population is religious. Because of this, it takes extreme measures to prepare their hearts to receive the Gospel. The abuse scandals involving Guam’s local clergy have affected a change towards how the local people view their religion. Recently our church’s neighbor asked if the scandals negatively affect our church attendance. I told him that they do not. He then said that his parish priest finally addressed the issue with the congregation the previous Sunday. He said that he and the other parishioners had waited the past two years to hear something about the abuse scandals, and all that was said was that the church teachings were good but the abusing priests were bad. It was obvious to me that the neighbor was disturbed, but he went on to say that the local people are a forgiving people and that all they have wanted was an acknowledgment of the abuse and an apology for it. This neighbor tried to keep things positive, but the reality is that the locals who are affected by the scandals want justice and have taken the matter to the courts. To me, the fact that this devoutly religious man spoke to me about it meant that he was truly bothered by it. Please pray that the hearts and minds of the local people continue to be softened towards the Gospel.
For the months of September and October, the Lord used me personally to lead 42 people to Christ. While soul winning in an apartment complex that I had been working on for a couple of months, a man whom I was talking to acted as though he did not understand me. Across the parking lot sat a woman I had recently led to Christ, and I asked her if she would translate for me. She said she would, and we began to present the Gospel to him. As I explained the Gospel and she translated, suddenly the man stopped pretending that he did not understand and responded to me directly as I talked to him. In the end, he said he understood the Gospel, believed it, and wanted to receive Christ into his heart as his Saviour. After we prayed together, we shook hands, and he thanked me for talking to him. I am glad I found a way to talk to him about the Lord through a translator because it gave more time for his heart to change and want to receive Christ as his Saviour.
Island Baptist Church continues to be blessed of the Lord. Our faithful members are growing, receiving answers to prayer, and bringing people to church with them. We are truly blessed with good people who love the Lord.
One of our faithful families received a big answer to prayer. We had been praying for almost two years with this family for them to be able to purchase a specific piece of property that the owner wanted to sell underhandedly to avoid taxes. After encouragement and peace from the Lord, the wife of this family took a chance and told the owner of the property that what the owner wanted to do was a sin and that God would not bless it. The Lord worked on the owner’s heart, and he sold the property to them legally about a month later.
Please continue to pray for our health and safety, Island Baptist Church, Guam, and Micronesia.
In His harvest field,
Dan Rothwell and Family