Saturday, December 31, 2016

2016 in Review (Killillays Update)

“The great question is not, ‘Will not the heathen be saved if we do not send them the gospel?’ but ‘Are we saved ourselves if we do not send them the gospel?’ " 

-C.H. Surgeon (quoting another person)

Not all missionary's are sent to the foreign field but all missionaries serve on the front lines in their jobs and communities where they live.   Those who must stay behind to help support the advancement of the gospel in foreign lands also receive the reward as with those who go.   

Thank you!  To all of you who have sacrificed to advance the kingdom of God through us in Peru.  We are grateful.  Those in our home church and others who pray faithfully for our family every week, thank you!  Those who take time to give counsel and direction when its asked for, thank you!  Those who have helped by giving us solid books and Bibles in Spanish to give to the brothers, thank you!  Those who faithfully send financial support month after month so we can stay here in Peru doing the work of the Lord, thank you!   And most of all we thank the Lord who as called us to salvation and allowed us to make disciples in Peru!  May God receive all the glory for what He is doing through all of us working together to make his name great in Peru!  

Highlights from 2016
The Church in Cusco:

This last year has been a great year when we look back at some of the things the Lord has done.   

First we have been working with the church plant La UnciĆ³n Iglesia Cristiana (Iglesia Cristiana de Cusco) for about two years.  The last nine months we have been serving in a leadership role.   The Lord is maturing His church through the sound exegetical preaching of His word.    All three of us pastors have seen God mature us bringing a genuine unity in thinking and doctrine and a growing unity in judgement.     

This year eleven people have made a public profession of faith in Christ and have been baptised.   On the 24th of December we held a special service up in the mountains to baptise three new believers.  Two of those who have been baptised this last year have been our own children, Andrew and Stephen.  We pray that if this is a genuine work of the Lord that they will continue to grow in their spiritual lives along with the other nine who have professed faith in the finished work of Christ.  

Much of our time this last year has been spent meeting with nine individuals and families for discipleship classes every week as we have added one more discipleship class in the last two weeks.   Please pray for those whom we meet with and are 'making disciples' of.   Three of those we meet with still need to be saved.    

One young man in our congregation is showing some extra spiritual maturity, and he is starting to take over the youth group.  We are praying that God would continue this work in his life and we are thinking of him as a possible future pastor if the Lord continues this work in him. He is also starting to do a Bible study with his grandma and sister.   

In June we had a fun retreat with our teens in the mountains and twenty teens came to that.  We studied the gospel and how to share the gospel to our friends.  We also played a lot of volley ball and soccer.    

My favourite highlight of this last year was when we used a medical campaign to bridge the gap between the church and two Quechuan villages on mount Ausungate.  One community of about two hundred people heard the gospel in their native tongue for the very first time through a Quechuan translator and a weak preacher (picture on left).  The feeling is like Piper describes it.  "You ...cry, 'O God, this is so weak!  Who do I think I am?  What audacity to think that (in this moment) my words will be the odor of death to death and the fragrance of life to life (2 Cor. 2:16).  My God, who is sufficient for these things?'"  It is one of the most sobering and awesome experiences to introduce the glories of Christ to a people who don't know Him.  

In the second community there is a small group of believers that are meeting for a weekly Bible study.  We are praying about helping them form a church plant and training their leader Tomas in 2017.      

Reaching and Teaching:

We had the privilege of working with Reaching and Teaching  to train pastors in Chazuta and Desaguadero.  In May, Reaching and Teaching held their graduation for the students who had completed the three year course in Chazuta.  It was a joy to see many of the pastors graduate and move on in ministry.   In August we  helped launch a new training site in the town of Desaguadero which is on the border of Bolivia.  

In the past two months three new Reaching and Teaching families have moved to Cusco ( Holloway FamilyGreenup Family,  McKenzie Family ) to serve the Lord here.  We will be working with these dear friends to train pastors with Reaching and Teaching around Peru.     

Lillie and the children with their grandparents!
Thank You to all of our friends and family who have been a part of this work in Peru.  May the Lord bless the work of His kingdom in the year to come.


Please continue to pray for us as we move forward in 2017.  Pray for my family the second week of January as I will be in Desaguadero training pastors with Reaching and Teaching.   Please pray for safety on this trip and a good connection teaching the brothers. Please pray for wisdom for the church leaders and congregation.  Please pray that the church would grow to know the limitless love of God that passes understanding and that we would grow in maturity unto we reach fullness of Christ.  Please pray about supporting us financially as we are need of financial supporters to continue the work.  Lord willing I plan to return to the States next years for a month to raise support and we would ask you to please keep that trip in prayer.  


Friday, August 19, 2016

Parties, Freezing Cold, and an Explosion / Killillay update from Peru

Thank you to all who have been praying for my family over the last five weeks as well as those who have been praying for safety and success in the work.  After spending three weeks in the United States and visiting different churches as well as being part of Sovereign Grace Bible Church's first annual missions conference Michael and I arrived back home on the 28th of July.  Here is an update since we have been back in Peru.

1.  Desaguadero:

The work in Desaguadero began for Reaching and Teaching as Tony Steele, Cristobal Quispe, Anibal Salazar, and I sat around a table in Cusco Peru last October.   That night seemed especially cold as Tony and I had just arrived from a week of training in the jungle to an altitude of 11,000 feet.

The plans made around that table became reality as Reaching and Teaching International Ministries started their first week of training pastores in this new site in August.   There were over 40 in attendance each day and by the end of the week over 30 had enrolled in the program offered by RTIM.

The challenges to this work started before the team met together in Peru.

-First, brother Paul Walker almost didn't make it to the training in Peru.  His flight leaving Denver was late coming in which stranded him in Denver because he would miss his international flight out of the States.  Trying to get a flight to Peru was even more challenging than normal because the Olympic games were set to begin and he spent all day trying to find a flight to Peru.  The Lord in His providence used the change of day and route to put Paul in a city that he was not destined to pass through.   In that city God had a divine appointment for a man to hear the gospel.  We must commit our  works to the Lord, and He is the one who establishes our plans.  (Prov. 16:3)

-The second challenge was the first night we arrived in Desaguadero the entire town was partying and worshipping their idols.   The party was across the street from our hotel with four stages set up and four bands all rocking at the same time until 1:00 in the morning.  It seemed to me like each band was trying to outplay the other bands as the all played at the exact same time.  It was chaos.   I have never experienced anything like that in my four years in Peru.  It was so loud that the windows, walls, and even our bed frames were vibrating with the music.

-The third challenge was the altitude at 12.550 feet above sea level.  We were all affected by the altitude.  Both Paul and Tony experienced feeling like they couldn't breath in the middle of the night. I only mention it in passing because it seems like a small thing but when you can't get warm in a week of training it makes things uncomfortable.

-The fourth challenge could have been deadly.  While I was teaching I felt ill and kept getting worse.  I had to teach from a chair.  Soon my eyes closed and I couldn't put my thoughts into Spanish sentences.  I started slurring my words and nothing was making any sense as a migraine headache came on.   Tony  stopped me in the middle of trying to teach and told me to go back to the hotel room.   I stumbled through the desks of students like a drunk man barely able to stand.  Not long after I left there was an explosion.  A small gas tank exploded in the kitchen that is located below where the pulpit is on the second floor that we were teaching from.  Thankfully Tony and the brothers were all fine and the only damage was the gas tank.   The hose to the stove had a leak in it caused from the cooking and what had caused my problems was breathing the fumes for 40 minutes before it exploded.  Thankfully everyone was okay but sadly I  don't have a lot of brain cells to lose.

Please keep this work in your prayers.   Pray that the Lord would raise up a church back in the States that can partner with Reaching and Teaching to help them train in this new work.   Probably a church located in Alaska would be a good fit.   Please continue to pray for the brothers in this area.  

2.  Ausangate:

After arriving back from Desaguadero the leaders from our church went to 'Lauramarca' to share the gospel and help with a medical campaign.  Another brother named David Chavez in Urubamba donated 100 blankets to give out and Jair a medical doctor from Cusco and Ruth his nurse went with us to help in this work.   We also had Joel Smith visiting us from the States who went with us.  He was supposed to go to Desagudero with us but he also had airline problems.  

Our original plan was to visit two villages to help out with medical needs and share the gospel in both places. On the first day we ran out of medical supplies and decided to head back to Cusco after only one day.  It was a good trip and Joel Smith had an opportunity to share his testimony through a Spanish translator and then through a Quechuan translator.  Roger and I shared the gospel with a Quechuan translator as well.

The highlight of this trip is that we now have a plan to bring Tomas to Cusco twice a month to train him in the word.  Tomas is the brother leading the Bible study up there as well as the brother who translated for us into Quechuan.  

Please pray for this work as there is  much work that needs to be done.

3.  Cusco Peru:

Pastor Paul not only helped teach in Desaguadero but he also preached a series on the family for five nights in Cusco Peru.  He has such a desire to serve sacrificially that we worked him like a rented mule.  We also found time to relax and share about ministry and work.  It was a profitable time for me to spend with a dear faithful brother who is also one of my mentors.

During the meetings most of our church members faithfully came.   The services started each night at 7 and were supposed to end by 8:30 after an hour of preaching and 30 minutes of questions.   What really happened was that we the last two nights we finished around 10:00.  Now it's time to rest and get back into the routine of daily ministry in Peru.

Please keep this work in the church in prayer as the Lord is working.   There is also another group of believers in Lucre about 25 minutes outside of Cusco that have asked us to come and help teach them the Bible.

Please pray for us as there that we would have wisdom to know how to meet the needs the Lord is putting before us.  Our pastoral staff will meet this week to discuss what we can do to help.

Please pray about helping us financially.  The work continues because people faithfully give each month and sometimes its people we don't know.  The Lord continues to meet our needs and we are grateful for your support both financially and in praying for us.  

I want to thank our home church Sovereign Grace Bible in Helena Montana for their love and support in the work.  This last picture is for the Knoepke children who drew for us these really nice pictures.  Stephen and Sophia have them hanging by their beds.  

Thursday, July 7, 2016

A quick update: Cusco/United States

Never think of the church of God as if she were in danger. If you do, you will be like Uzza. You will put forth your hand to steady the ark and provoke the Lord to anger against you. If it were in danger, you could not deliver it. If Christ cannot take care of his church without you, you cannot do it. Be still, and know that he is God. - C. H. Spurgeon

The Church in Cusco:

On the 28th of June our teen group had the opportunity to visit Tambo de Gozo in Pisac Peru.  The Lord blessed our time while there.   We studied the gospel and how to share the it with our friends.  We had a bonfire 12 feet high, ate cotton candy, and of course played soccer.  Thank you for those who have prayed for this time together.

By God's grace the church is growing in sanctification.  The elders in the church continue to seek wisdom from the Lord as we seek to be biblical in all of our decisions.  Continue to pray for the church as we have some sensitive decisions ahead.  This last Sunday the Lord was working mightily in the hearts of the believers through the preaching of God's word.  The believers are hungry for the truth and they desire to learn and grow.  It is truly a privilege to be part of God's work here.  Please continue to pray that we believers would respond in grace and humility to the truth. 

This last Sunday was bittersweet because I won't see my church family for a month.  I will be traveling to the States for 3 weeks.   When I return I will be home for 2 days before leaving again to Desaguadero to begin a new pastoral training site with Reaching and Teaching in south Peru.  Please be in prayer as my dear friend Paul Walker will be teaching with me and also ministering to our church family here in Cusco the following week.     

In the United States:
Saying good bye last night!

Michael and I are very excited to be able to travel to California and visit the west side of the United States and share with other believers about the work in Peru.  Please pray for us that our time would be fun and profitable.   Please pray that the Lord would give other churches and brothers with like mindset a desire to help us in this work.

Please pray for my dear wife who will be with our younger four children. She is awesome!  Our kids are awesome too!   

And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,  so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him. -Hebrews 9:27-28