A Remnant Remains – Solorzano Update February 2024

Tagaytay, Philippines

What an amazing past month it has been traveling around South East Asia. We spent one week in Indonesia and one last final week in the Philippines. Let’s just say- we weren’t in Japan anymore (Dorothy voice). From completely opposite weather, to major culture differences, to even the toilets- they went from heated seats playing music to a hole in the ground with a bucket (haha, no joke!).

The Narrow Way

During our time in Indonesia, we traveled in a van for about eight hours, including a one-hour ferry ride to a village in East Java that is unreached. There we were able to explore the island through a Christian-owned travel company started by David, a missionary from California in 2015. Many doors have opened for him in sharing the gospel through this business. He also started a Child Sponsorship program for those in junior high, since many kids end up dropping out because there is a fee to go to school and many cannot afford it. The families are mostly Muslim or Hindu, and it is through this program that they are able to experience the love of Christ. However, there is a catch. Once they decide to become followers of Jesus, they must pay the government $10,000 and possibly experience death threats and persecution from their family members.

Traveling back to Bali, we were able to meet with multiple Pastors from different church plants. One Pastor shared of his conversion from Hinduism to Christianity. Three nights in a row, he had a dream of a road- one path leading to a cemetery and another path leading to light. During one of his Hindu prayers, he prayed, ‘Jesus if you are really God, lead me’, and sure enough, Jesus did. Since that day, his whole life was turned around- he destroyed three different temples that he had built, and started a church. Other testimonies included Jesus revealing Himself in a vision of His wounded hands to Muslim women, who then cried out to Him, as well as amazing, radical, life-changing testimonies of people with HIV being healed by the power of God. The stories we heard were as if we were reading pages from the New Testament- it all became real and visible. This is the narrow way that leads to life.

Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

Matthew 7:13-14
Kid’s Sponsorship Dinner- East Java, Indonesia

Shrine After Shrine

I know in my last newsletter I mentioned the temples and shrines in Japan, but what we saw in Indonesia was nothing close to that. I was struck with even more sadness, that then turned into anger in seeing shrines and idols house after house, corner after corner. In Hinduism, there are said to be thirty-three million gods- with most being apparitions of demons themselves that were eventually made into statues to appease them. The worshiping isn’t so much in seeing their beauty and hope of love and peace, but rather of fear and power. They must give the idol an offering- an incense, food, and/or payment. They clothe it, clean it, place it under the shade of an umbrella to protect it from the scorching heat. It is under more protection than some kids are- most running around barefoot and without clothes. The temples become something of treasure and possession, taking up any resources of time and money. This is all in hopes of this “god” staying away and coming against their family and life.

The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else.

Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill. In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent.

ACTS 12:24-25, 29-30
Festival of gods- Bali, Indonesia

Love One Another

Arriving to the Philippines felt as if a weight and pressure had been lifted off. I could breathe normally again. Even though the country is in the 10/40 window, it is considered reached with about 89% of the population being Christian. However, only about 11.3% Evangelical Christians. We visited a Calvary Bible Institute, in Tagaytay, for a three-day Conference on the Purpose of the Church. We were reminded that in the first century, there were 12 Unreached People groups to one church. Today, there are about 1,000 churches to one Unreached People group! Indeed, it is a doable task, and let’s just say the Filipino church is on fire for reaching the nations with the Gospel!

After the conference ended, we traveled an hour and a half by van and an hour on a fisherman boat to Tingloy Island. Many accepted Christ on their first visit, they knew about Jesus but did not fully understand the gospel. Now coming back a third time, we had the opportunity to worship, share stories, and play games with the kids. I have been doing kids ministry for almost three years and these kids were the most attentive, well-behaved, respectful kids I have ever seen. The love of Christ radiated from them. Two kids won a cupcake and you will never believe what they did with it… they each took a bite, and without thinking, without being asked, they passed the cupcake around to all their friends. I was in awe. My heart was filled in seeing this love within the community. It was so sweet and the Lord reminded me of this- “No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.”

Sharing my testimony at a church in Bali

Last post I mentioned the peace I had in knowing that salvation comes from God. Yes, that is true. After all, it is God who gives the increase (1 Corinthians 3:6). But- how will they call on the name of Jesus if they don’t know who He is? Who is going to tell them? Who is going to go? The Church is commanded to go out and preach the gospel (Matthew 28:19-20). That is the true purpose of our lives here on earth. They need someone to preach the gospel in order to hear, in order to believe in their hearts and confess with their mouths, in order to be saved. In every single country, the Lord showed me that a remnant remains. God has created every single one of us for reason. He has placed us where we are for a special purpose. Amongst the darkness, there is hope. There is a light. A remnant still remains.

Please join me in prayer for South East Asia. I pray that the Lord places a specific country, a people, a culture, on your heart, and may you fervently pray for their salvation. For their eyes to be opened and willing to receive the Good News. Please pray for more laborers. For more people to be willing to share the gospel. Pray to be made willing. Thank you for your prayers. Thank you for continual partnership in the Kingdom of God!

For, “you are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for You created all things, and by Your will they were created and have their being.

-Mayra Alejandra