Dear Friends and Family,
It’s been a little longer than usual since our last letter, and I’d like to apologize for that. I’d also like to thank each of you for your continual prayers and support for our ministry here in Peru. It means so much.
In our last letter I asked for prayer and help with several projects. Since then, we have been able to open the Bible Institute for the Deaf with four students.
A number of other students have expressed interest but are hoping to get started next year.
After about a month of classes, it became clear that two of our current students are not ready for institute level study. Instead, we are helping them with remedial school programs where they can improve their reading and writing so as to go on to resume the institute courses when they are ready.
Please pray for our students – Rosalinda, Yazzeli, Hilda and Richard – as they study the Word of God and seek to do his will.
I also asked for help with the purchase of a van for our family and ministry. Several churches responded generously, and we are so thankful that we were able to purchase a 2011 Honda Odyssey in great shape.
It has already been such a help on visitation and for church activities, as well as just for getting around town with the family.
We have had several outreach activities over the past few months.
We have also ramped up visitation, and many have made professions of faith on Deaf ministry visitation.
In April we traveled to Iquitos to help a church there that is adopting a deaf ministry. We taught Sign Language and preached faithfulness and service.
In May, we visited the mountain city of Arequipa for a family member’s wedding. While there, I visited a national missionary and was encouraged by his vision for a church plant there. I also preached in another local church in the area.
In June, Efata held our international missions conference, and the church family had a wonderful spirit of service and sacrifice. We are hoping to take on two or three new missionaries this year.
The following week, we hosted a ladies’ conference organized by a fellowship of like-minded churches.
Two months ago, a deaf-blind couple who attend our church faithfully were hit by a large truck. Yoni was flung aside and suffered only minor bumps and scrapes, but Flor was pulled under the vehicle and crushed beneath it.
She has gone through much since then, including three intensive surgeries, but we are so thankful that she is stable and recovering.
Many have given to help with her medical expenses. Please pray that Flor will eventually recover the use of her legs.
Up next is another missions trip. Lord willing, on July 31 we are going with around forty members of our church to the jungle city of Pucallpa, where we plan to spread the Gospel message and do some much-needed maintenance on the ministry infrastructure there.
Please pray for our family – for our health, for our stamina and for our growth in the Word. Our children are doing great; Esther made a profession of faith last month the Wednesday before Father’s Day.
Zulema’s health is up and down, and all of us have been dealing with recurring flus and colds. Thank you for your prayers.
Joseph and Zulema Kotvas
JJ, Esther & Grace