To Cuba With Love Sutherlin Church Holds Meetings in Cuba
A group of 10 members from the Sutherlin congregation, plus two members from the Roseburg congregation, set out for the island of Cuba in February to share the love of Jesus with the Cuban residents. Most of the 12 members who began this journey were completely unaware of the many miracles that God had in store for them. Several of the members had gone on a mission to Cuba in the past, so they knew already the joy that lay ahead for them. But for many it was their first time.
When they reached Cuba our 12 members were split up into three different groups. It had not been their plan when arrangements had first been made that some would end up in a different area than the rest of the core group. Some had been nervous to be separated from friends and traveling companions. They could not know at the beginning what God might have planned out for them before they ever took that first step onto this fantastic journey.
When we trust in God and follow where he leads, we know without question that he will place us in exactly the area that we are most needed. This was one of the many questions that were answered when they found out why it was necessary to be separated. Satan was very busy causing problems with the computer programs used to present the sermons. Some of the computers that the group from Arizona used had arrived only days before they were set to leave. There had not been enough time to edit sermons which made it very difficult for them to use. Two of our members who were split off from the rest of the 12 were able to help the Arizona team. Had these two not been sent ahead this Arizona team would have found it extremely difficult to continue with what they had been given to work from.
Countless times all teams had trouble with computers not functioning properly. A Bible text would be missing where it had not been missing before. At times the Spanish words that were projected onto the screen would be switched by the computer system causing English to be seen by the Cuban congregation. Without fail, though, Satan would be turned away as our speakers and support groups prayed for help. The computers would be put back into order and the sermon presented. One night two of our people were trying to do some last minute editing of the presentation on Heaven. At one particular place in the slide show the power would click off, preventing the change. This happened five times in a row. They knew that this could not have been a coincidence. With prayer, on the sixth try the edit was allowed and the presentation was able to be given without further incident.
One of our members wanted to give something to the children one night, so she decided to buy cookies to hand out at the end of the meeting. There had been on an average 29 children attending each night. She bought what she thought was more than enough to cover 50 children, just in case more than the usual number happened to show up. She was not worried until she reached the last bag of cookies. Looking behind her she saw that there was still an extremely long line. More children had come than the 50 packages of cookies that she had bought. Immediately it came to her mind that Jesus had been able to multiply the fish and the bread to feed the people. She prayed that he would make her more cookies, not wanting to be forced to turn any away empty-handed. There were three cookies left in the bag when the last smiling child had been given one.
Two of those in our group had been impressed to take with them a copy of the Great Controversy. They were blessed to be allowed to give it to a 100-year-old man who had been praying for nine years for a copy. He received the book one night in a drawing, accepting it with tears of thankfulness.
Altogether our group was able to count 56 miracles among them on this one trip alone. There were 313 people baptized and 697 are preparing to be baptized. The enthusiasm of this group testified to the success of this mission. When asked if they would be planning to return to Cuba in the future, there was a unanimous yes!