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Complete Stats on materials produced by the Shappley’s and Fruits registered

Links to previous reports, beginning with 2008, are also on the above Page.

Report from Dewayne and Rita Shappley

For the month of May, 2014

Highlights of this Report

-Couple baptized in Bayamón, Puerto Rico after studying on our Internet site www.editoriallapaz.org.

-New work begun in Cantaura, Venezuela through the site.

-Substantial increase in visits to the sites registered in May.

César and Nancy Torres, in the middle, were baptized in Bayamón, Puerto Rico, May 28, 2014, by Dewayne Shappley (right) and Jorge Ginés López (left).

César and Nancy Torres, in the middle, were baptized in Bayamón, Puerto Rico, May 28, 2014, by Dewayne Shappley (right) and Jorge Ginés López (left).

-Bayamón, Puerto Rico. May 28, 2014. César Torres and his wife Nancy were baptized in the Bayamón church meeting place, Wednesday night, May 28, after studying subjects on www.editoriallapaz.org and attending two Sunday morning services. After the service Sunday, May 25, we were making plans to go to lunch together when both mentioned they would like to become members of the church. Fulfilling my obligation as an evangelist, I asked them if they wanted to obey the gospel then and there, noting they could be baptized without further delay if they wished. Both said they had been baptized by immersion in a church in North Carolina. When I explained that, with few exceptions, present day churches do not baptize for the forgiveness of sins, both readily agreed to be baptized biblically, setting the date for Wednesday because of a condition Nancy had. They were there early and, to the great rejoicing of all present, were baptized at the beginning of the “Song Service” we have the last Wednesday of each month to learn new songs and improve, in general, our singing.

The conversion of César and Nancy is a classic example of how Internet evangelism can be effective. About four weeks ago, Nancy found our site www.editoriallapaz.org and, after studying subjects on it, she and her husband began attending. They came convinced already! César, born in Bayamón, and Nancy, born in Fajardo, on the eastern end of the island, are both from strong Pentecostal families, but, as they explained, did not want to have any more to do with that emotional, merchandising, Old Testament oriented religion, and were searching for a more biblical church.

César, almost 56 years old, has retired from the US Marshals after 28 years of service. Before that he was in the military. His last tour of duty was in Guam. He spent most of his years as a US Marshall here in Puerto Rico. Nancy worked for the Police Department here for six years. After retiring, they returned to Levittown, Puerto Rico, adjacent to Bayamón, where they had already bought a house, and began to look for a church.

On that same Sunday of May 25, attendance was 110, and one lady was restored.

E-mails and Notes reveal much about the material on our sites and positive reactions to it.

In order of date. Don’t miss the one dated May 27! Moisés Peña, ex Pentecostal pastor, learns the truth on the Internet and begins a new church of Christ in Cantaura, Venezuela.

 

-La Romana, Dominican Republica. May 03, 2014. “May God bless you and help you to continue this great work.” Olivero Lizardo

-Olivero sent two more addresses of congregations in the Dominican Republic for the Directory on editoriallapaz of churches in that country. Brethren there have their own directory of more than 110 congregations, but it is good to have some information on our site for visitors from that country who might seek it, as some have.

-Madrid, Spain. May 05, 2014. “Hello, friends. I have read your Web Page editoriallapaz. Since I live in Madrid, Spain, I would like to contact some member of the congregation in my city.” Pedro Gestoria.

-We sent Pedro contact data and a schedule of services for the congregation meeting at Calle Teruel 25, in Madrid.

-He replied on May 11. “Many thanks, Homero, for the information. It is very complete. I will make contact with the church in Madrid.” Pedro Gestoria

-Venezuela. May 07, 2014. “May God bless you. Congratulations on your Web Page. Greetings from Venezuela. A sister will be in the capital of México for a time. I would be thankful for your help in locating the nearest congregation.” Edwin V.

-Place not identified. May 10, 2014. “Thanks for your attention, my friend. During these last months, I have received a calling from the Lord to restore breeches and marvelous things have happened in my life. I have been reconciled with my enemy. I have returned what I had stolen and asked people I have hurt for pardon, for example, my wife for being unfaithful to her. And I have felt the purification of my soul, a pleasing sacrifice to God. Do you think I could make known the calling of the Lord, though my studies of the Bible are not of the highest category? I do have the foundation of love, pardon, peace, faith, strength, wisdom and the desire to serve. I thank you for your words, which are well received by me, since the Lord has sent you to encounter me.” Juan Luis Fernández

-Well, I have had previous communication with Juan Luis, but do not know to what degree subjects on editoriallapaz may have had to do with the great spiritual transformation he describes. Among the materials on the site are not a few of an evangelistic nature, urging repentance, challenging sinners to overcome their evils, encouraging the lost to seek God, truth and salvation.

-Aguascalientes, México. May 11, 2014. “I think it a great help for people who are searching for God. Brethren, I live in the city of Aguascalientes, and I am interested in knowing where I can attend. With thanks beforehand. Blessings.”  Mario Pedroza

-Nebraska. May 11, 2014. “Brother, greetings from the church of Christ in Nebraska. We have some recorded cassettes that have been of much help. What can we do to obtain more of these studies?” Abraham Betancourt

-Many materials produced by us years ago continue to be used to this day, for example, cassettes with studies and sermons, of which we made more than 300,000 copies.

-Place not identified. May 13, 2014. “First, I congratulate you for your courage and the work done to bring us such valuable information.” Esteban Polo. Referer: "http://www.editoriallapaz.org/Diezmos.htm"

-This statement is made, as the Referer indicates, with regard to the study on the tithe. Esteban continues with observations about how the Israelites counted animals and people.

-Place not identified. May 17, 2014. “Thanks. The pictures were more helpful to me than the text.” Sara   Referer: "http://www.editoriallapaz.org/cena_3_historia_maestro.htm"

-Reference is to one of the fifteen lessons on the Lord’s Supper, one of the more complete studies I have done, the equivalent of about 160 letter size pages. The Referer identifies the text for the teacher for Lesson 3 of the series, “The History of the Lord’s Supper.” A number of pictures, for example, of the Lord’s Supper being served, and other graphics are included in the lessons. I assume Sara would agree with the saying: “A picture is worth a thousand words.”

-Daly City, California. May 19, 2014. “Many of those who were my Pentecostal sisters are very happy with the studies. They call me by telephone and tell me all the sisters should learn this.” Susana Pabón

-This statement is from a lady who left Pentecostalism three or four years ago after studying materials on editoriallapaz.org. She is attending a local church of Christ. She did not say exactly which studies have made the “Pentecostal sisters” happy. Could be the ones on tithing or those on the roll of women in the church.

-Place not identified. May 20, 2014. “It is all fantastic, and agrees perfectly with what is written in the revelation of John.” Antonio. Referer: "www.editoriallapaz.org/apocalipsis_bestias_segunda.htm"

-Antonio wrote this with regard to the study on the two beasts of Revelation 13. As I studied more deeply for this part of the commentary, I was especially impressed with how the healing of the “mortal wound” received by the first beast was healed, according to my understanding, when the Roman emperor Constantine converted to the “Christianity” of his day and moved the capital of the Empire to Byzantium, later called Constantinople. Consolidating his power from his throne in the new capital, he was called in his own time the “Savior of the Empire.” To my considerable surprise, I learned the name “Byzantine Empire” is purely the invention of modern historians. The citizens of the eastern part of the Roman Empire always identified themselves as “Romans”. Becoming very strong and very rich, the eastern part of the Roman Empire continued until 1453 a. d., when the city of Constantinople was conquered by Ottoman Turks. The Roman Empire certainly did not expire in 476, as anyone who has read Edward Gibbon’s “The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire” would know, a fact substantiated even more by Will Durant’s Pulitzer Prize winning “The Story of Civilization,” especially the volume “The Age of Faith.”

 

Cantaura, with a population of about 60,000, is a small city in the eastern part of Venezuela.

 

Moisés Peña begins a church of Christ in Cantaura, Anzoátegui, Venezuela. A moving story of great spiritual courage.

More fruits of Internet evangelism

-Cantaura, Anzoátegui, Venezuela. May 27, 2014. “Good afternoon, my brother in Christ, Homero. I greet you with the peace of Jesus Christ, hoping you are well, together with your loved ones. We are very pleased to have received the valuable material for our growth as a part of the body of Christ here in the town of Cantaura, Anzoátegui, Venezuela. In the first place, I am pleased to respond to your questions, since we both work for the same Master, Jesus Christ. As far as I am concerned, your interest in the work we are carrying on here for the glory of our God is not a lack of respect. What would be a lack of respect would be for me to not tell you, with all humility, the situation we are in with regard to carrying on the work of God in this place far away from Puerto Rico.

First, the congregation began activity in the year 2007 [Moisés has reference to the Pentecostal-type congregation called “Lord of Lords” he began in that year.] We carried out an evangelistic work with good results, receiving into our ministerial fellowship a total of 51 people, the fruit of our effort in announcing the Good News of Christ. You asked me about baptism. On this subject of such great importance I can tell you I did baptize, but NOT for the forgiveness of sins. With regard to the subject of the Lord’s Supper, I can tell you we have celebrated it from the time of the first baptisms, but only once a month. With respect to worship, we used instruments of music, including the guitar, the cuatro [a cousin to the guitar] and a loudspeaker system.

[In the following paragraphs, I retained in the translation the format of words in capital letters Moisés used in his Spanish-language e-mail, adding highlighting in bold to certain statements.]

All was going along quite well, according to my understanding… Until one day, specifically, two years ago, in 2012, when I came upon –a blessing to me- the Editorial La Paz portal [www.editoriallapaz.org]. When I began to study with much interest some of the subjects explained there, I became aware of the ERROR in which I found myself with regard to the sound doctrine of the Sacred Scriptures. And the Spirit of God confirmed some of the doubts I had been presenting about THE TRINITY, SALVATION, and the blessed MILLENNIUM, and the so-called RAPTURE, among others. And I found in this portal (Editorial La Paz) that what I had been confronting, including in discussions with other pastors, who, by the way, called me crazy, on the subjects mentioned [was right according to the Bible]. That was not the worse part. When I took these teachings to the congregation I administer with the fear of Christ, of the 51, almost all LEFT, not to say all, completely in disagreement with the TRUTH. Only a few of us remained, that is to say, six people, MY FAMILY. From that time, my shaken up brother Alamo –for I imagine this has shaken you up- I preach the TRUTH, and I teach it with authority and wisdom only God can give me. The Pentecostal religion is very strong in this town, and their mysticism does not allow them to see beyond their religious disguise. This is sad, but is the reality. I continue to teach some who accept THE TRUTH in their hearts.

As a matter of fact, I mentioned a person I am going to baptize these days for the forgiveness of sins, in Vargas[Vargas is a state of Venezuela on the Caribbean coast, partially surrounding the Federal District of Caracas. States are called “municipalities” in Venezuela.] Well, his own family (evangelical) threw him out of the house for preaching THE TRUTH, which, by the grace of God, I have taught him by telephone. What do you think of that? I am going where he is to baptize him for the forgiveness of sins.

With regard to all else, I am happy in Christ, with my family. I am fulfilling the part God has given me to do –PREACH HIS WORD. He who ignores, let him ignore. There are some people who are listening and comparing, and becoming aware of the difference between a Christian and an evangelical.

With these brief lines, I hope to have responded to your questions.

The congregation I began was called Lord of Lords. That is all past. Now I preach THE TRUTH of Christ, of the New Testament by His Blood, in the church of Christ, for His glory and honor.

Your brother in Christ, Moisés Peña

-Replying, I told Moisés he really had “shaken me up” with all he had done and experienced, and that I admired him very, very much for his tremendous spiritual courage. This ex Pentecostal pastor, taught his congregation the TRUTH, and when all except his family refused to accept the TRUTH, he did not back down! His church of 51 was reduced to 6, and a few still willing to listen to him. If you have not lived where Pentecostals are strong, it would be hard to understand how much conviction is needed to break with them and remain firm, especially in the case of one who has been a pastor. Pentecostals here in Puerto Rico are twenty times more aggressive and virulent than the ones I have seen in Tennessee.

-I offered to include data on the new church of Christ in Cantaura in the Directory of churches for Venezuela. Moisés sent information as follows:

-Cantaura, Venezuela. May 30, 2014. Location: Sector Simón Bolívar. Calle Antonio José de Sucre. –Telephone: 041 12 879 5552. iglesiadecristosiglo1@hotmail.com Schedule of services. Sundays, 10:00 a. m. Evangelista: Moisés Peña.

[Translated, the e-mail address would read firstcenturychurchofchrist@...]

-Again, I would emphasize: These are fruits of Internet evangelism. Through editoriallapaz.org on the Internet, I went to Cantaura, Venezuela two years ago with the result that a Pentecostal pastor and his family renounced their errors and formed a small church of Christ. Here is a man willing to preach the truth. He is not asking for US dollars, not even to travel some distance to another state to baptize a man he taught by telephone! Does this example not open our eyes to the merits of evangelism and edification by means of the Internet. I have had several exchanges of e-mails with Moisés, some about his desire to teach classes using materials we have developed for the School of Advanced Bible Studies here. He can get many of them right off the sites we have on the Internet. No expensive printing and shipping. Just download them!

 
Cantaura, Venezuela is indicated by a green arrow on this map of Venezuela.

The green arrow points to Cantaura. To the left, near the coast, is the capital of Caracas. The blue is the Caribbean Sea. Puerto Rico is about 750 miles to the Northwest.

Internet Stats

A marked, upward trend in visits to editoriallapaz.org began May 19, with 3,963 on that day. The number increased to 4,608 on the 20th and remained above 4,100 for the rest of the month, with a high of 4,869 on the 27th. As of this writing (June 6), the trend has continued, with a high of 4,888 on June 3. I have been steadily adding new material and improving many, many documents. In previous years, when schools are out for the summer, visits have gone down noticeably. So far, this year is proving to be an exception. Again, I would humbly ask, just for perspective and emphasis: How many evangelists, working in English, Spanish or any other language, have more than 4,000, or even 3,000, people a day knocking on their door?

May, 2014 (31 days)

-Visits

-To www.editoriallapaz.org .............................................................................. 115,886

-To www.iglesia-de-cristo.com ............................................................................... 221

-To www.apocalipsis.co ........................................................................................... 797

-To www.vimeo.com, for videos of hymns and sermon......................................... 415

-Total visits............................................................................................ 117,319

-Daily average of visits for the month............................................................. 3,784

-Page views for all sites.............................................................................................. 208,368

-Totals for the year 2014

-Total visits...................................................................................................................... 488,653

-Daily average for 151 days.................................................................................. 3,236

-Page views.................................................................................................................... 887,245

Grand Totals through May 31, 2014

-Grand Total of visits................................................................................................ 11,915,696

-Grand Total of Page Views (documents accessed by visitors)......................... 23,860,477

Data for www.alabanzas.info. Antonio’s site for hymns.
May, 2014

-Visits for May.................................................................................................................. 14,112

-Page views for May........................................................................................................ 21,252

 

Complete Stats on materials produced by the Shappley’s and Fruits registered

Links to previous reports, beginning with 2008, are also on the above Page.

  

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