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4000-294-Caucutt, David and Kristen

To equip the church to make mature disciples of Christ in Loja, Ecuador.

In 2014, David came across a request for help in Loja, Ecuador. God began to make us sensitive to this need and burdened our hearts to pray about whether there was something He wanted us to do to help. God confirmed this calling, and, after much preparation, brought us to Ecuador in September 2020.

We look back and see how God has been writing this story long before we realized it. Since 2005, David has been involved in short-term missions, evangelism, discipleship, and youth ministry in our home church. Over the years God has given David a growing passion to see believers become mature disciples of Christ who are equipped to make more disciples. In high school and college, God gave Kristen several short-term medical mission opportunities in Central and South America. These experiences made her sensitive to Latino people and motivated her to learn the Spanish language to better serve and reach them with the love of Jesus. We see now how God has used these experiences to prepare us to serve the people of Loja.

Less than 1% of the people of Loja (lo-hah) Province are Evangelical Christians. The majority of the population is Roman Catholic, though animism often mixes into their religious beliefs. In Ecuador, Evangelical Christianity is discouraged, ridiculed, and even seen as a cult. Evangelicals typically are disowned by their families and looked down upon. In more rural areas, the local religious leaders have been known to threaten those who would participate in Evangelical activities. There is often fear of associating with the Evangelical church, making it difficult to reach people with the Gospel.

Additionally, we have seen a great need for intentional, Christ-like pastoral ministry here. Sadly, much of the pastoral work that has been done in Latin America has involved spiritual abuse and misuse of authority. What is worse, many pastors do not see the importance of shared leadership and tend to undervalue the members of their congregation rather than encouraging them to serve as members of the body of Christ. We desire to see the Ecuadorians not only shepherded well but equipped to shepherd others as well. This kind of loving care for one another will serve as a testimony to those outside the church (John 13:35) resulting in God being glorified (Matt. 5:16 and 1 Peter 2:12).

• Pray for a movement of disciple-makers among the Ecuadorian believers.
• Pray for the growth, unity, and encouragement of the churches in Loja Province.
• Pray for God to raise up Ecuadorian pastors who are founded on God’s Word and motivated by love to serve Christ’s Church.
• Pray for the Ecuadorians to see their need for Jesus and respond to the Gospel.
• Pray God would strengthen and equip us to love and serve the Ecuadorian people well.

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Ecuador, Americas