Chile (MNN) — The 33 Chilean men who were trapped thousands of feet underground when the San Jose mine collapsed are still making headlines, but this time for a slightly different reason. One of the now-rescued miners recently joined an evangelistic campaign.
During the 69-day period that the men were stranded deep in the earth's crust, Jose Henriquez was known as "the pastor." He continuously asked for Luis Palau audio biblical messages to be sent down while underground, and he frequently spoke with the other victims about his Lord. By the time the men were rescued, 22 of them had professed faith in Christ.
The Luis Palau Association was in Chile from October 25 to 30 for an evangelistic campaign in Santiago and Viña del Mar. They invited Henriquez to speak.
When Henriquez told his testimony at one of the large gatherings, people were clearly moved. God used the combination of Henriquez's testimony and Palau's message, eventually leading thousands to Himself.
Every event throughout the week was packed to the limit. Andrew Palau spoke one night in Viña del Mar at the popular Quinta Vergara Amphitheater; it was the first time the theater had ever been filled to capacity on a weeknight. Over 145,000 people directly heard the Gospel message throughout the rest of the week-long festival, along with potentially millions more through media broadcasts.
The people of Chile have had a rough year. Between a severe earthquake that took hundreds of lives, and a mining crisis that kept the country in agonizing anticipation for weeks, many are clearly ready to hear some good news. In this case, the overwhelming response to the Good News makes that clear. These tragic circumstances have apparently not been enough to stop the Gospel.
22 miners, and now 13,000 more Chileans, have professed faith in Christ. Pray that each one of them would continue to seek the Lord and grow in their faith. Pray that that their choices would not just be temporary reactions to stress or turmoil, but true, life changing surrender to follow the only One who can consistently be their hope.