Every year, we have four ministry specific conferences in January (Youth & Marriage Focus), April (Children), July (Worship Focus), and October (Evangelistic). The young adult and marriage conference is a vital ministry because it focuses on two very culturally relevant demographics that are often overlooked in the jungle: youth and marriages.
Youth: Missions in the Amazon believes that the future of our congregations and our organization rests in our youth. However, because of the impoverished landscape of most of the villages, much of the youth are looking for their first opportunity to leave their homes with an unrealistic hope of a better future; either by traveling to the city to try to find a job, or responding to the constant invites of the military. These two options nearly always result in more severely impoverished situations, as they aren’t equipped with the necessary skills and resources to be successful in these environments. Missions in the Amazon aims to change that trajectory, as we educate the youth with life skills and visions of community development in their villages today. From there, the youth will take on leadership roles in their churches, communities, and our organization.
Marriage: Marriage is a very interesting conversation in the jungle. For most of our villagers, their relationships are binding, yet unofficial to the government. By celebrating and instituting marriages within the villages, the villagers become legal citizens of the country of Peru, and receive many rights that they otherwise wouldn’t have. From there, we teach on biblical concepts of marriage to villagers of all ages, and walk with them to develop true love and respect among the men and women of the villages. One other focus that our conference has, is to walk alongside families that have come from a polygamist background. We help those villagers to understand the complexities of such beliefs, and then provide alternative, biblical lifestyles that are applicable to their culture and way of living.