Looking for work, Venezuelan finds a church family

Tags: missions

Fernando* takes a photo of himself in Bogotá, Colombia. He moved there from Venezuela to find work and a more stable life for his wife and daughter.
IMB photo.
BOGOTA, Colombia (BP) -- Fernando* felt like a failure. For a month-and-a-half he had been looking for work in Colombia, where he didn't know anyone. He longed to hold his wife and daughter again but couldn't return to Venezuela without a solution to the uncertainties there.

The young Venezuelan couple had agreed: If they wanted a better future for their daughter, he needed to go. Although Fernando had maintained a good job in Venezuela, the country's growing instability -- political tumult, poor schooling and a shortage of basic medicine and food -- compelled him to try to build a life in another land.

Fernando rented a room in Bogotá and began looking for work. Instead he found rejection.

Then a friend of a Christian former coworker invited him to church, The Pathway Christian Community.

"I told myself, 'I don't have anything to lose,' so I went," Fernando said. "I felt such a strange feeling … of brotherhood and fellowship. They made me feel so at home … [and] like this was my family. And they didn't even know me.

"I returned to my little room full of hope. … I realized in spite of being so far from my family, I wasn't alone," he said.

Fernando's* wife and daughter were reunited with him in Colombia after being separated for many months while he sought work to leave an uncertain future in Venezuela.
IMB photo.
Fernando grew up Catholic but had never opened a Bible. Now he wanted to know more about God.

"I give the Lord thanks for putting me through trials and difficulties … so I could know Him," he said. "I realized I have always needed Him. I just didn't know it."

Prayer requests:

-- Pray that Fernando's wife and daughter, who are now reunited with him in Colombia, will also know Jesus.

-- Pray Fernando finds work.

-- Pray that the churches in Colombia who support Venezuelan refugees will continue to seize this opportunity to be salt and light to the lost.

Gifts by Southern Baptists through the Cooperative Program and the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering support Southern Baptists who are taking the Gospel to people in the Americas as they help national believers lead out in that effort.

*Name changed.

Reported by the communications staff of the International Mission Board.
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