SERVING IN: Spain , Europe
Jack and Ann Chalk are second-career missionaries being called to the mission field in 1993. After six years in the mountains of northern Mexico they were directed by God to the war-torn country of Sierra Leone in West Africa. They spent the next six years at a Bible college and establishing a counseling center for women abused during the war. In 2006 they transitioned to Aberdeen, Scotland to begin a new era of evangelistic ministry. In answering God’s call, they moved to Córdoba, Spain in 2012 to begin a church planting ministry.
It has been quite a while since our last newsletter, but finally, we greet you from our new home in Santander on the northern coast of Spain. Yes, God is doing a new thing. Much has changed since we last wrote and we have much to share with you about our new life here that we will do over the next few newsletters. We pray that all is well with you and that the Lord’s blessings have been poured out upon you.
The Lord has shown us with sufficient confirmation that we are to move to a city on the North coast of Spain called Santander. We have to vacate our present apartment by mid-August. Right now COVID restrictions prevent us from leaving Andalucia and from entering the Santander district. We will see what the Lord does. Santander has a large group of English-speaking residents and no English speaking Christian fellowship. We will start there.
At this point, the end of February, the pandemic restrictions are still in place. We cannot leave the province of Córdoba, everything closes at 6pm, and there is a 10pm curfew. Masks and social distancing are mandatory. The time is coming when proof of the vaccine will be required for travel. At our age and not being in the public health system, the vaccine is not available to us and we do not know when it will be. We do not want it, but if we have to have it to travel where God says go, so be it.
In this year of upheaval, uncertainty, and financial setbacks, you have been faithful to keep us in your prayers and to support us financially so that we have not wanted for anything. We are so grateful for each one of you and we pray that God will preserve, prosper, and bless you abundantly in 2021. May it be a year of recovery and peace for you and yours.
The COVID-19 cases continue to increase at record rates in Córdoba and all of Spain, but the government is afraid there will be rebellion in the streets if there is a total lockdown again. The people have no hope if they cannot go to work and they cannot drink and socialize as they want. They would rather risk the sickness. In Spain, the highest number of new cases is in the 19-29 age group, the rebellious, self-centered future leaders of the country. But we keep plowing, “he who plows should plow in hope” (1 Cor. 9:10).
With the COVID-19 and the heat of summer, our outside ministry has all but shut down. Ann has started her bread ministry again, but the heat (over 100 F every day) makes it difficult for her. Jack continues to work on his new book and to write posts for his blog at www.JackChalk.blog.
Like many of you, we have been holding on to the above promise and resting confident in God’s loving care. The lockdown was officially over in Spain on June 21, but with a new normal which mandates the wearing of masks in public places and maintaining social distancing. Although the number of cases of the virus has diminished, it is still around and with the opening of the country to foreign tourists, things could change rapidly.
During this COVID-19 pandemic, many Christians are tempted to ask if this is the judgment of God on the world, and some will just assume that it is. They see it as an opportunity to talk to people about God and His Gospel. I would caution that before you bring God into any conversation with unbelievers you need to be ready to answer the question, “If God is real, why doesn’t He stop this plague?” You need to have an answer ready and “I don’t know” or “His ways are higher than our ways”, will not cut it with an unbeliever.
Ann continues her ministry to the beggars on the streets. Some are actually homeless and some live in Gypsy camps outside the city. She put together special Christmas bags to give them with some bread, candy, and leaflets explaining the reason we celebrate Christmas. Jack continues working on his new book and we both have been able to go out with the Red Box ministry on Wednesday nights, after the prayer meeting in our home.