Sometimes God sends a breath of encouragement in the ministry just when you need it. We have been planting a lot of seed, and continuing with our Sunday afternoon and Wed. evening Bible studies in downtown Santa Cruz, but we felt like we really needed a place to hold church services for things to grow as we would like. People might be a little reluctant to go to some one's apartment for church. We couldn't afford the rent of a store front, as prices here are anywhere from $800-1500 US per month--so we had no other option to wait and pray until the Lord provided a place for us.
The other day my husband was witnessing downtown, and a building he has noticed before in the neighborhood where we work that belongs to the city was open, and the president of the organization just happened to be there. Doug inquired about renting the building on Sunday mornings, and the man was open to the idea. He said for Doug to come back the next afternoon, to present it before the council. Doug was very positive that the Lord had opened the door, and of course, my skeptical nature kept me from getting too excited about it--I supposed that the others would vote against it when they found out we were a Baptist church--but God did the unexpected--and for us it was a great blessing--they said we could have it and it would only cost us 75 Euros per month!!
It is nicer than anything we could have imagined, and today we had our first service, with 18 in attendance. My husband is really encouraged and we are looking forward to seeing many souls saved and discipled in the future, for the glory of God!