English or Spanish
English or Spanish? The decision is one I often have to make when planning Bible studies or even greeting young visitors at Upper Manhattan and in New Jersey. Some young people in the congregation and some visitors speak primarily Spanish, others English. Most speak some of both depending on how long they have been in this country.
Fair Lawn have been conducted in English for several years, we have recently had to start a young peoples class in Spanish for several new arrivals who do not yet understand English well. Picture above right.
As a North American I prefer the English language, but as a Christian my job is to communicate the gospel to people in the language they best understand. I have no fear that America will become a bilingual country, because second and third generation Latin Americans prefer to speak English. However, Spanish is still an extremely useful tool in reaching those immigrants of the first generation and their children.
There are special Bible studies with groups of teens on Wednesday afternoons, Friday evenings and Saturday mornings. A group of about 18 teens took a large van and car last week to a study conducted by Gary Fisher in Indiana. The Ferenzce family had about 75 people for in depth Bible studies and singing the Friday after Thanksgiving. (Picture to the left)
In addition to Bible studies mentioned in the last report, I have a new weekly study with Abel Jimenez from Querétaro, Mexico and a group study with several young people who are not Christians in Kearny, New Jersey.
Central New Jersey
Brigham Eubanks, Jerry Falk and his family, Lidia Burga, Esther Rodriguez have started a new Spanish work in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. All have been excellent teachers in the work in Fair Lawn, so we will miss them on Sunday afternoons!
About half a dozen people, most taught by Jerry Falk, have been baptized in the Central Jersey area around Piscataway in the past two months. We have worked with several of them in past years and are glad to see the gospel bring forth fruit.
Meeting in Atlanta
I enjoyed a meeting the first week of December with the Hispanic congregation that meets at Embry Hills in Atlanta, Georgia, picture below. The area around the church building is filling up with numerous immigrants from various Latin American countries and the Christians are doing what they can to reach out to them with the gospel.