Argentina ISB, 22-29 May 2015
At the end of August, a one week International Scripture Blitz (ISB) took place in Cordoba, the 2nd largest city of Argentina. The local Gideons and Auxiliary were joined by a team of 8 Gideons from the U.S.A, 1 from South Africa and Gavin Veness from the UK. Please see below Gavin's report for your encouragement:
"The main emphasis of the blitz was distributions to students in Universities and Secondary Schools. The students were very responsive; some would readily accept a New Testament where others would politely say “No, thank you”. Those that were listening to music would often remove their headphones to hear what was being offered to them. Some would stop for longer and it was possible to show them the helps section at the front and the Gospel outline at the back.
At the Medical Sciences Faculty, a student called Karol initially passed by without taking a New Testament but then turned back asking about it. Having looked through she said that it would do her good explaining that she had a brain tumour and was going to have an operation the following week. I assured her that she would find help looking through the verses from the helps section.
The school distributions would be done on the pavements outside at midday when there was a change-over between those attending school in the morning and those arriving for the afternoon. At the secondary school of the Malvinas 2nd section village, 4 boys were sitting outside and received Testaments.
I continued to hand these out further down from where they were when then a local Gideon, Gustavo, said to me, “they want to know where you are from and why you have come all this way.” I explained that we wanted to share God’s word with them and showed one of the students, Gabriel, the plan of salvation and asked what he thought and understood. There was a long silence; it appeared that he was thinking it through. He was willing for me to pray for him before he left for home.
On the 2 final days, our team went out into the towns of the Cordoba province visiting smaller schools and distributing to police and fire stations. The police are part of the Armed Forces so receiving New Testaments with the camouflaged cover were very well received. The volunteer Fire personnel have a hard job going out to fight forest fires, they were pleased to receive a visit and we were able to take time to talk through the New Testaments with them.
Permissions were not granted in time for Military Institutions, but we praise the Lord that he opened doors in this area. On the final day we drove past 4 sets of Army Barracks and the guards at each gate accepted a pack of New Testaments. Meanwhile another team made a journey to an Army college unannounced to see if a placement could be made. They were well received by the Commander who was favourable to the placement.
Although permissions usually need several days to be arranged, the team were asked to return in the afternoon. When they arrived back they found a big branch from a tree had fallen on 2 cars just where they had been parked flattening their roofs, they were told the incident had happened just 15 minutes after they had left in the morning. Although the Commander and staff were busy with the clear up and paperwork (one car belonged to the Mayor) they were still happy for the placement to be made.
A local Gideon explained that what may have seemed like normal distributions were clearly blessed by God as there were noticeably fewer obstructions than usual. Thank you for your prayers. We praise the Lord for his protection and for opening doors to place 182,000 copies of His word."
Surrey South Branch
Please look out for a full report featuring soon in Gideon News.