¡Hola! Me llamo Laura. Hopefully, you have had an opportunity to introduce yourself to our three Cuban guests who arrived last Wednesday and will be here until May 8. Pastor Javier Perez, his wife Lissette Perez, and Eddy Stanchiu are members of our partner church, La Iglesia Bautista del Camino (Baptist Church of the Way) in Guanajay, Cuba. This is Javier’s fifth visit to Greenville, and the first visit for Lissette and Eddy. The partnership between our churches, developed through a longtime relationship between the Alliance of Baptists and the Fraternity of Cuban Baptist Churches, formally began in 2006 and has included eleven exchanges between members, including time spent together in Cuba and Greenville. As a part of this partnership, La Iglesia Bautista del Camino gifted us the beautiful altar cloth that we put on the baptistery each time we celebrate communion. As a part of our covenant with them, we remember them each time we have communion.
This past weekend, Javier, Lissette and Eddy accompanied me and other church members to Raleigh for the Alliance of Baptists Annual Gathering. In Greenville, they will have multiple opportunities to reconnect with our church and community, including MidWeek meal and fellowship last week and on May 3; leading in worship yesterday; conversations with Missions and Affiliations Committee, deacons and church staff; visits to Annie’s House, United Ministries, Julie Valentine Center and Triune Mercy Center; gathering with past Cuban mission travelers; and speaking to youth on Sunday May 7. We’ve also made sure to allow time for the Duck Derby and a Greenville Drive game and hopefully a visit to Furman.
If you haven’t yet met Javier, Lissette and Eddy, I hope you will have a chance this week. Feel free to contact Anne Garner or me to find out more about their schedule and how you can connect.