Articles and thoughts by Steve Green.
What goes on in Maracaibo, Venezuela? Well, on June 28, the U.S. soccer team took on Argentina in the Copa America games at a huge stadium. Earlier in June, the city hosted the Junior Panamerican championship for Freestyle, Greco Roman, and Women’s wrestling. How do I know? On the flight from Miami I sat next to an 18 year old Canadian girl who was appalled at my ignorance and brought me up to speed on the sport. Maracaibo is also a thriving cultural center with its own unique humor and music. The city is proud of its six universities and draws students from every part of the country to study law and medicine.
As impressed as I was with the city, one young man made an even deeper impact on me.
Miguel Rodriguez is just twenty-two years old, but has been hosting mission teams from the States since he was fourteen! This summer alone he will help facilitate ministry for over 600 visitors. He has a group of 40 volunteers who help organize humanitarian work among the poor, street ministry to children, medical care for the hurting and evangelistic meetings all across the city. Miguel is passionate about discipleship and zealous to reach his country with the gospel. I was humbled to find out that the way he learned English was by listening to my recordings for hours a day, month after month, rehearsing the lyrics out loud. (That actually sounds like some ancient form of torture!) By the way, his English is near perfect. Now he is tackling French, with a desire to extend his ministry to the Muslim population in France.
After all that listening, Miguel couldn’t help but know all my songs. So we just had to sing a few together.
The concert was held at the Palace of Events, as can be seen from the picture. This was our second visit to Venezuela this year. Once again, I was thrilled with the opportunity to present the gospel and so glad to get in on what God is doing in Maracaibo.
The band played with excellence and their lives radiated God’s love. From the left they are, Charlie Pettit on drums, Charles Garrett on guitar, Dick Tunney, musical director and keyboard player, Miguel, me, Juan Santos on bass and percussion, David, my brother, road manager, friend and backup vocalist, and Carry Summers, sound technician.
Here are a few more shots of the our event…
Many of you have supported our overseas trips through the Founder’s Fund. Thank you, again for your partnership in sharing the gospel and for helping respond to wonderful opportunities in faraway places.
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