In FBC’s Cuba Mission, God Shows US Beauty Amidst The Struggle
When you think of Cuba, movies like “Havana Nights” or political issues like the Cuban Missile Crisis may come to mind. But what should be known from this impoverished island country is an undercurrent of deep and growing faith in Jesus Christ.
Scott Cottingham and Rusty Bowman went to Cuba in September of 2022. The last physical trip into the country prior to this was in May of 2019, over three years ago. In that three-year timespan, a worldwide pandemic ensued, lock downs isolated communities, and severe persecution attacked believers on all fronts. Their deep faith in Christ, which had already burned bright in the hearts of the people, spread like wildfire. Churches grew in their resolve to pray and care for one another. However, under this great persecution, the Cuban church needs more encouragement than ever before.
Scott Cottingham explained, “It is a very difficult time for all Cubans, but the church now is under persecution for standing against the pressures of society, their leaders, and standing on the Word of God as their plumb-line.”
It is a hard existence for the people of Cuba, especially now. What the people experience today is much like life after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. That time was known as “The Special Period”. Resources were limited, and the harsh rule of the political elite was unforgiving.
Now the people face similar, if not harsher, living circumstances. Medicine and supplies have always been scarce, but now so is food! Their freedoms, especially their religious freedoms, are under severe attack. Society as a whole wants the people to conform to its secular dictates, much like American culture today, and yet, praise God; the church is standing firm!
In the midst of this, there is hope! Although specific details cannot be expressed due to the volatility of the situation for the Cuban church families, we can report that because of the generosity of the Flint Baptist congregation, the lives in the Cuban Church are encouraged! Through many different years, there have been different needs, and in all of them Flint has answered. You, the FBC community, have helped to build a seminary, provide teachers, supplies containers of rice, beans, powdered milk, medications and even helped to see the first class of future preachers and community leaders for Christ graduate in 2022.
The Lord knows what the future of the Cuba mission will be, and your prayers are needed for these Scripture-hungry and Christ-centered people. Pray for the strengthening faith of the younger generations coming up, as they watch older ones flee in hope to give their families a better life. Pray for our missionaries who ask for wisdom and guidance in whom to serve, where to serve, and how to serve. Pray for clarity and a clear way to reach the people, since travel restrictions are still strong, entrance into the country is limited beyond the Havana area.