National partner Zuleima de Rojas began an outreach after receiving medicine for a neglected community from Southern Baptist’s compassion ministry, Send Relief. This ministry has led to many in an assisted living facility in Venezuela coming to Christ.
Rojas, Send Relief’s Critical Medicines Project coordinator, alongside Send Relief workers Alan and Gaudy Carlton, began reaching out to this community of individuals with special needs and elderly individuals after learning none of them were receiving medicine, despite each patient having serious medical needs.
‘Why we do what we do’
The team’s visits have become a monthly occurrence so that the doctors can provide care to the patients in the facility and refill the medicine they need. While caring for and loving on the people there, the gospel has been shared, and many have come to Christ.
Recently they had an old timey “meet me at the river” baptism for nine of those who made professions of faith. For Alan, “These photos and commentary explain why we do what we do.”
The team could not submerge one woman, Luz, because she has a prosthesis in her leg that is open to bacteria in the water. She was also in much pain and could not tolerate the strong current in the water. However, the team baptized her by the river by pouring a bucket of water over her head.
New life in Christ
After her baptism, Luz shared her testimony:
“When I found the Baptist church, I had my problems to find the medicines for me. The church helped me to find my medicines because in my country it is so hard to buy it. They are very expensive. The church helped me to find all, I repeat, all my medicines for the treatment I need.
“Since the moment the church first saw me, they haven’t failed me. Everything has been very beautiful and very good,” she said. “Since I believe in Jesus, I have been studying the Bible, and then today I was baptized. Everything was very pretty. In the beginning I was nervous, but thank God everything was great, and now I am feeling great.”
Eight other believers, besides Luz, were also baptized.
“This year, our goal in working with the ministry of medicine is to reach out to more for baptism in June and make another effort and baptize again in December,” Carlton noted. “Together as God’s team we can take more people to heaven!”
EDITOR’S NOTE — This story was written by staff with IMB and Send Relief.