Transformation Rosario Argentina
From Ekklesia by Ed Silvoso
Ed Silvoso has recently published a book entitled "Ekklesia - Rediscovering God's Instrument for Global Transformation".
In it Ed digs into scripture and shows how the early Church was a radical, countercultural force of people who transformed the hostile, pagan places in which they lived. He shows us how we can again be the revolutionary, transformational, life-bringing Ekklesia that Jesus called us to be.
"One of the greatest books of our lifetime. Brilliant, inspired, profound and challenging." Bill Johnson, Bethel Church, Redding, CA.
As well as digging into scripture, Ed tells many stories. Here is one to illustrate:
In 2011, Barrio Las Flores in Rosario, Argentina, was overrun by battling drug cartels. Drug dealers even had concrete bunkers on the streets from which to hand out drugs.
Then Gregorio Avalos ran for president of the neighborhood association for Barrio Las Flores – and won by four votes. Gregorio is a taxi driver who experienced a power encounter with the Lord as a member of the transformation church pastored by colleagues Aldo and Roxi Martin. Believing God could and would rescue his barrio, he began speaking peace over every house, literally walking out Luke 10:5-9 in prayer evangelism.
It “just so happened” that Michael Brown and Tony Mitchell from Vallejo, California were in Argentina, equipping regional leaders in transformation. When they heard about Gregorio’s beginning at the barrio, they asked him, “How can we help?”
Gregorio suggested providing supplies to paint the run-down community center. The Ekklesia in Vallejo, through Michael and Tony, provided the resources, and with every stroke of the paintbrush a blessing was deposited on the building.
As these droplets of authority began to fall, Gregorio was emboldened to ask God to send people with barrio-sized solutions. The sign would be that they would ask, “How can I help you, Gregorio?”
First came the mayor of Rosario, then the governor of the province, and finally the national security chief, all posing the same question: “What can I do for you?” The latter deployed troops to demolish the drug bunkers. The other two brought renovation. Today, Barrio Las Flores has paved streets, a sewer system, streetlights and a new school. The new regional hospital (the largest in the province) is being built there, as well as Rosario’s brand-new train station.
That Jesus had come to the neighborhood was never more in evidence than when, within a few months and for the first time in memory, over ten thousand people in Barrio Las Flores felt safe enough to leave their homes to publicly gather for the proclamation of the Gospel by renowned Argentine evangelist, Carlos Annacondia, with thousands making decisions for Christ. And that authority of heaven is now moving beyond the boundaries of the barrio as the growing Ekklesia of Rosario ministers to both the mayor and the governor regularly.
How the spiritual authority entrusted to the Ekklesia trumps the power of godless secular government became patently evident recently. Rosario is situated in the province of Santa Fe, Argentina. This particular province is the only one governed by radical socialists, who take pride in their agnosticism or atheism and in espousing a humanistic social agenda. As such, they are the least likely to be open to spiritual things, much less to the Church.
Nevertheless, Aldo and Roxi Martin adopted the governor spiritually and began to practice prayer evangelism, blessing him in their prayers and fellowshipping with him “a la Luke 10.” They are also able to minister to his felt needs, leading him to experience goodness, peace and joy – in essence, the Kingdom of God.
As a result, the radical socialist government the governor leads, convened a meeting with pastors at Aldo’s place and asked them to mentor fifty thousand youngsters who have gotten in trouble with the law. These are folks who neither work nor study and have already done time in the juvenile hall or prison. In essence, they are a social ticking bomb.
The government specifically asked that every participating church building be turned into a training center three days a week where these kids could learn life and work skills. The government would pay for the construction of workshops – carpentry, plumbing, computer labs, etc. – on church property and would provide financial support for the students and full salary for two church leaders to serve as mentors for every fifteen youths. And if this is not already supremely extraordinary, this socialist government asked that 33 percent of the training time be devoted to Bible classes. Basically, the government asked the Ekklesia to disciple the province. This is indeed an extraordinary miracle!
Details of the book are here. (Other booksellers are available)
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