We are learning Castellano in La Plata, Argentina. I think one of the most common questions I am asked is “Where do you go from here?” We love La Plata! It is a great city with great need! The churches here are advancing the Gospel. There is still a great need, and they are training men to help start other churches! There are many other large cities in Argentina. So, where are we going next? The truth is we don’t know exactly. We have areas we are looking at, but we are not yet fully persuaded. With that in mind, the following are a few options we are looking into (in no particular order).
- Rosario: My family was in Rosario recently. It is the third largest city in Argentina. Rosario is located about 300 kilometers northwest from Buenos Aires. The population is over 1,193,00. There are a few churches (Baptist) that we know about and a Bible College. The need is certainly great with such a concentration of people.
- Córdoba: Córdoba is the second largest city in Argentina. I talk to a lot of people here in La Plata. I like to ask what people think of different cities in Argentina. Anyone I ever talk to about Córdoba tells me how amazing it is. Córdoba is about 700 kilometers northwest of Buenos Aires. It is located in the foothills of the sierras. The population is over 1,428,000. I am told there are a few churches (Baptist) in that city. I have not been there. I know one missionary here in Argentina who told me that Córdoba would be an excellent city to start churches in. The missionary is in one of the northern provinces. We talked about different cities in Argentina and Córdoba was the city he seemed most interested for a new work to start.
- Mendoza: Mendoza is located on the western border of Argentina (approximately 113 kilometers from the Argentina/Chile border), with the backdrop of the Andes Mountains. The population is 1,011,600. The city is 1050 kilometers from Buenos Aires. I have heard that there are a few churches in Mendoza. The need is also great there.
- Greater Buenos Aires: I don’t know how anyone could consider church planting in Argentina and not consider Buenos Aires. The city is the 20th largest city in the world. Almost 1/3 of the population of Argentina lives in Greater Buenos Aires! The issue here is that Buenos Aires is so big, that “planting churches in Buenos Aires” is not very clear. There are large portions of the city where there are no churches (Baptist) that I know of. There are quite a few churches in some parts of this monster city, but the need is far, far greater than the laborers!
These are the largest cities in Argentina and the areas that we are praying about. So where do we go from here? I am fairly sure we will be in one of the above mentioned cities before long.