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PAGE 13: Chuy Avila prays during a pre-dawn men’s prayer group. FAR LEFT: Chuy and Maria Avila pray with Sylvia Perez at her home on the outskirts of Laredo. Perez lives in a particularly impoverished neighborhood that does not guar- antee running water or electricity. LEFT: Chuy and Maria Avila walk from house to house in inviting residents to a new church that Chuy planted in the area. BELOW: Chuy Avila and his wife, Maria, deliver a Bible to a woman and her children and talk about upcoming events at a new church in the area.


takes in his life by the time he and Chuy met. A father by 16, Angel’s marriage was at the brink of divorce. “Angel passed our church and saw some cars in the parking lot, so he thought there was someone that could pray for him because he was depressed,” recalls Chuy. Ironically, Chuy was holding a confer- ence on marriage and the family and with Angel, he had an eager student.


Over coffee the following day, Chuy led Angel Contreras to Christ. Angel is now trying to rebuild his marriage, and Chuy is discipling him to be a leader in one of the 50 churches Chuy plans to plant in Laredo in the next five years.


“If it wasn’t for the Lord using Chuy, I really don’t know where I would be,” says Angel


“The Annie Armstrong Easter Offering helps us a lot,” Chuy says. “Through that and prayer, we feel the support. Every morning when I wake up and then walk to the (mission) field in the streets, I do not feel alone. I know there are hundreds of people praying for me. I want to encourage Baptists to keep giving because through their giving, we can do our ministry here.” OM


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ON MISSION 15


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