Paramakatoi (PK) is a village inland in region 8 of Guyana. The secondary school there is the only secondary school in the sub-region. Winston and Deon Gudge have been fulltime volunteers in PK for 8 years as boy’s and girl’s dean and with the Lord’s guidance have planted the first Seventh-Day Adventist church in a Catholic dominated region. The Gudges are trying to build a mission house to make room for more volunteers and finish the church so the village has a place of worship. For the past four years the church has held evangelistic meetings/vacation bible school each year and also conduct Bible studies several times a week in efforts to spread the gospel.
In the future, they would like to extend their reach to the surrounding villages and teach the people there about Jesus. However, the Gudges are currently the only volunteers in Paramakatoi and are in need of both supplies and volunteers.
We moved to Paramakatoi (PK) to take up the responsibility of being boy’s and girl’s deans for the dorms at PK. The secondary school dorms accommodate children from about fifteen outlying villages surrounding PK and is the only secondary school in the sub-region. The Catholic Church is the main denomination in this region and the Wesleyians is the mother church in Paramakatoi.
As Seventh Day Adventists we knew that this would not be easy and that God was calling us to do this work so we didn’t waste any time. The first weekend we held worship in our and by the fourth and fifth Sabbaths our home was too small to accommodate those coming to worship with us since kids from the school and other villagers began attending. We knew we needed a new place to worship so we asked permission to use one of the classrooms in the school but after a time that was also too small. With this in mind, we began to think about building a church in the village so we applied for a plot of land to begin building. It was turned down because they already had churches in the village and didn’t want any more. We knew this was Satan working to stop the work of God. When we applied again it seemed we would get the same answer but God put new people in the council to carry out His plans and we got a letter of approval!! To God be the Glory! Great things He has done. By this time, there were already over seventy precious souls that had given their lives to Christ: children from the dorms, and four persons from the village.
One thing we will always remember is the time 34 children from the dorms gave their lives to Christ. 11 of them are from Kurukubaru, a Catholic village. As well, a priest lives there and has a great influence over the people but God has plans bigger than the devil and we were amazed at His power as we watched the kids change more into the likeness of God.
These were children who mocked worship and did not want anything to do with the Sabbath but I am here to say that when God is in control, things happen! We know time is running out and realize that Christ is even at the door so we solicit your prayers and ask your support to spread this everlasting gospel to the remote areas of Guyana where people are craving to learn more about a Christ. In almost every surrounding village there is already a child that gave his or her life to Christ and was baptized but we need to visit and nurture these children. Unfortunately, distance is a challenge because it takes a couple days to walk to some of these villages over high mountains and rough terrain.
But there is no mountain too big for God and we place everything into His hands as we commit our lives into His care. We fully realize that we cannot do anything by our strength but, as Paul reminds us, we “can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.” God has been working mightily and we know His is able to continue. We will continue being faithful so He can use us. We know the work is far from finished and so we happily put our hands to the plow!
Winston and Deon Gudge