Fermín is the 36-year-old grandson of Matsigenka pioneer educator Venturo Cruz who reared him as his son and prayed every day that he would become a leader of his people. After finishing high school in his remote native community in the Amazonian rainforest, Fermín was accepted as a student in an outstanding private pedagogical school in the capital city of Lima. The challenges were extraordinarily daunting, but Fermín was eager for an education and determined to finish what he’d begun and not disappoint those covering his expenses. He set out to learn his way around a huge metropolis, put up with discrimination as he rented accomodations, greatly improve his Spanish and conquer his fear when called on in classes in which fellow students, who had grown up in the city, were far more sophisticated than he. Ten years later he was awarded the title of Professor of Technical Education with a specialty in Computer Science. He returned home and taught a year in his old high school.
During his years in Lima, Fermín developed remarkable courage to tackle any challenge while, at the same time, maintaining a grateful and generous spirit. During a weekend Bible conference, he had also sensed God’s call to begin a ministry to the young men of his community, little realizing that the game of soccer, which he loved, would eventually open the way. In 2012, he greatly benefitted from four months at Portantorchas, the Capernwray Bible School in Costa Rica.
One Sunday afternoon in the spring of 2016, back home in his native community, Fermín was taking a break between soccer matches. The guys sprawled out on the grass around him, some of them his former students, began asking questions. A week later Fermín’s sports ministry was launched and the Scorpions (Kitoniro) began training in earnest. The highest scoring player on the team is Fermín’s own 18-year-old son Elvis who is due to graduate from high school in December.
Fermín’s staff in his soccer ministry includes his sister Deyssi and her husband Wulver, both graduates of a three-year indigenous Bible Institute, and his cousin Jhon, graduate of Portantorchas’s one-year course. When Fermín was recently pressured to accept the job of delegate from the sub-division of his community in which he lives, he finally acquiesced with the understanding that Jhon and Wulver would share responsibilities with him. Jhon is twenty-seven and single. Wulver and Deyssi have two small children. All three men dedicate time in developing Fermín’s cacao plantation which they hope to see in production in 2020 to help provide them with much needed income.
How You Can Help
Fermín would be very encouraged by your participation in his ministry in one or more of the following ways:
• Praying regularly for him, his son Elvis, his staff and the members of the Scorpions soccer team some of whom are
taking their first steps in their walk with Jesus and others who have not yet started the journey.
• A one time financial contribution ($10 minimum).
• Regular monthly support ($25 per month minimum).
Your tax-deductible gift will be used to fund the needs of this ministry. Use the link below to give online OR send a check made out to Partners in Joy, Inc. to the address below. Make sure to specify in a separate note that your gift is for Fermín, Matsigenka Ministries. You may also arrange Bill Pay through your bank for automatic giving.
Partners In Joy, Inc.
PO Box 3761
Pueblo, CO 81005
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