Urbano Gomez is serving as a HeartCry missionary within the association of churches in the region of Pacaipampa, Peru. He travels and teaches in the churches of the association and also helps in the development of new church plants.
There are one hundred and ten towns and villages in Pacaipampa, of which only about forty have a church. Nevertheless, we have the goal of advancing into every town and village in the Pacaipampa area through evangelistic campaigns and church planting. We are also having prayer meetings with the other churches in the region, and we often fast together. Before we carry out an evangelistic campaign in each town, we meet to pray diligently together. Usually, the campaigns last three days, involving between twenty to twenty-five pastors. We often rent a place to sleep and pray together, or stay in a believer’s home in one of the villages. Then, in the morning, we divide into groups of three and go from house to house.
In some cases, the town’s people invite us to return. Recently, we had an evangelistic event in the town of Tauma. There was a group of people that responded to the preaching of the Gospel, and we were meeting together with them. However, another group that was preaching a gospel contrary to that of the Scriptures entered in and led the group astray. In some towns, the people respond, but they need time to grow, and we need to visit them constantly and teach them. This requires a great deal of dedication and time. We cannot simply say, “Well, they have responded to the Gospel; now the group is established.” On the contrary, we have to continue going, visiting those who receive us. When we have these campaigns in the villages and there seems to be fruit, one of us stays behind in order to continue teaching the people and helping them become established. Most of the time, either Pastor Nicomedes or I will commit to visiting the town week after week, every Sunday. Usually, we begin with two or three homes until eventually there is an established group of believers in the town.
We are currently visiting a group of believers in a town about three hours up the mountain. There is also a new group of believers that we are visiting in another town even higher up in the mountains. We can only reach them by foot, since there are no roads in that part of the region. It usually takes us about four or five hours to get there. We often leave early Saturday morning in order to get there in the afternoon and rest. Sometimes in the evening we have services that begin at seven o’clock and last until two or three in the morning. The next day we return back to our homes.
Typically, the people are only available to talk either really early in the morning or later in the evening, because during the day they devote themselves to their labors. The majority of the people work in agriculture. Therefore, when we evangelize in the daytime, we find only women in the homes. In such cases, we go with our wives to visit them. Since our wives cannot walk to many of those villages – because they are so far away – we usually wait until the evening so that we can invite the men once they have returned from their labors. We tell them that we are going to have a night service in the church, and we encourage them to come. We pass out tracts to them, and many of them come to the service. If they do not come, then the next day, we go house to house throughout the village to speak with them about their need to believe the Gospel.