The North Pacific Union Conference (NPUC) sponsored an evangelistic campaign in Bolivia March 9–25. Teams from Northwest churches preached at 30 sites around Santa Cruz the first week. Jere Patzer, NPUC president, followed up with a week of meetings at an arena in downtown Santa Cruz which were satellite uplinked to all of Bolivia as well as South America and Inter-America.
Other activities included medical clinics, church construction by students from Montana's Mt. Ellis Academy, Weeks of Prayer in four area academies, a trip to an ADRA orphanage, local church involvement and home visitation.
By the closing Sabbath, 5,781 people had been baptized across the country of Bolivia. During the next six weeks church leaders expect this number to rise to 10,000.
Among those baptized was the mayor of El Torno, a suburb of Santa Cruz. He had been very impressed by the Adventist message and members, especially the young people. While attending the meetings in his area and later the arena meetings he was convinced of the Bible truths and accepted the message. A few days before his baptism he gathered his city council and told them he wouldn't be working on Saturdays anymore, and if they all started work 30 minutes earlier each day they could all take Sabbath off. They agreed.
Also baptized was the widow of a former Bolivia National Soccer star. She saw a poster about the arena meetings in the hotel lobby where the team was staying. It caught her curiosity and she wound up translating for one of the meeting sites and being baptized at the arena meetings.
Next year's NPUC trip will be to Kenya or Uganda in East Africa. For more information on NPUC mission trips contact the NPUC at www.npuc.org or (360) 816-1430.