Stories from the Mission Field

July 2021

Here I am, send me! 30 years of missionary work in Patagonia

Hours of driving over bumpy roads through stone deserts in deserted areas. Five new churches founded. Working “on the side” to earn money for daily bread. Experiencing God wonderfully and repeatedly receiving confirmation of their calling. This is the story of Mimi and Pedro Boretsky.

Thirty years ago, they heard the unequivocal call from God for missions. They gave up everything, packed their things in the car and simply drove off with their two daughters, not knowing the destination that God had prepared for them.After three days and travelling 2000 kilometres, they reached Esquel, a small town in the Andean foothills in western Argentina. There was no Baptist church there – so they stayed and began their missionary work.

God continually surprised them. They found a house with enough space for the small emerging church. The Boretskys dreamed big, so they bought two pieces of land. An education centre with large classrooms for Bible lessons was to be built there and there would even be space for a Christian school. And for the long, hard winters, a sports hall would be ideal in order to evangelize through sport.

In the midst of these dreams, the Boretskys felt more and more “pushed” by God toward the midlands. Descendants of the indigenous Mapuche live there – in great poverty and with few educational opportunities. And so, even before the mission work in Esquel became a church, they had already founded five mission stations in the villages and towns around Esquel (100, 150, 200 and 400 km away). On the long journeys over stone slopes, they wrecked no less than five family vehicles. Without asking for help, God opened the hearts of friends and churches who gave them replacement vehicles. After a few years, the help from EBM INTERNATIONAL was added. The Boretskys received not only financial help for their missionary work, but also pastoral care that they never had before in their ministry.

Today, every mission project in Patagonia has its own small meeting room with minimal facilities to carry out its activities. Some already have mission houses while others still need to be built.  It was only in the last few years before they retired that the Boretskys were able to give up their jobs as furniture transporters. They are incredibly grateful that EBM INTERNATIONAL covers the cost of their living and transportation. In addition, the small congregation in Esquel is now able to partially support its missionaries financially.

Pedro says: We are now almost 70 years old. 30 years have passed since this crazy adventure! The energy is not the same … but the enthusiasm for missions in this area of ​​Patagonia remains! And we have not lost hope that our dream of the education centre in Esquel will come true! If we could turn back time, we would not hesitate for a moment to invest our lives again in this cause … and say to the Lord once more: “Here I am, send me!”

This missionary work is an example of the 80 diverse church development projects around the world. At Thanksgiving, we collect for this core area of work:

Gabi Neubauer