A Week with the Quechua in Peru - Stories from theMission Field
A Week with the Quechua in Peru
We are at 4300m above sea level in the small community Thusa in Peru. Here in the highlands of the Andes, around Cusco and near the Inca site Machu Picchu, which belongs to the new seven world wonders, we are visiting a total of 13 churches and a mission conference. The main missionary of EBM INTERNATIONAL in the region is Adrián Campero. Through his ministry, more than 60 churches have already been established among the Quechua.
We are always enthusiastic about Adrián’s way during the various encounters: he adapts effortlessly to the different conversations and is very close to the people. He has an open ear and prays spontaneously for different concerns. People trust him and show him their openness. In this way, the congregations grow and many people are strengthened. At a mission conference in San Luis, more than 30 people responded to a call from Adrián to entrust their lives to Jesus or to allow themselves consciously to be put at His service anew. It is impressive to see how passionately faith in God is lived here. There is also always a big baptism at the meeting. This year there were 53 people from different local congregations who had registered to be baptized.
For the Quechua communities, this annual mission conference is a great encouragement. For four days, life is shared in one place. Many church members open their homes to guests, a mattress camp is being built in the parish hall, and a large assembly tent is being erected. Every day a different church prepares the food for up to 500 people – somewhere a cow was slaughtered for it – we only see how it is gradually processed into food. It is like a big mystery how all these people are cared for and find a place to sleep.
The many sermons and Bible studies are concentrated on in small groups. Extra material was developed and reproduced for this purpose. Only recently, with the help of EBM INTERNATIONAL, a good copier was purchased to print and reproduce training material.
The Quechua like to sing and they sing a lot. In addition to the common songs in the church service, there are also several parts of the program in which the congregations perform rehearsed pieces of music. Guitars have six strings, sometimes eight or ten. The bass guitar plays much more melody than rhythm and the singing often seems very high. Repeatedly different flutes are used. We try to sing along even though the Quechua language is very hard for us to read on the extra printed song sheets. Everything is foreign.
Graciastan qoyki Qespichiqnillay,
Graciastan qoyki Kallpnchaqnillay.
Not even google can translate these words. However, we clearly feel that we stand before God together and express our gratitude for what God is doing in all of our lives. And speaking of translation: Adrián has been involved in the translation of the Bible into his language for many years. A truly impressive, humble, and friendly person.