Colombian missionary charges dismissed

Russell Stendal

Russell Stendal
(Photo courtesy of VOM Canada)

Colombia (MNN) — Last week’s arrest of Russell Stendal highlighted some of the danger that exists in Colombia for Christian pastors.

Friday, Colombian missionary Stendal underwent trial on charges that he had participated in rebellious activity with FARC guerrilla rebels (read that story here).

Our friends at Voice of the Martyrs Canada shared this update from Stendal:

Great news! The Lord turned the tables at the last minute. The prosecution went on for hours and hours, and I spoke for ten minutes. The judge believed me, told the prosecutor he had been wasting her time, and threw out the case. I have been completely absolved.

-Russ

Christian Broadcasting Network says the judge ruled Stendal, 59, not guilty of supporting the guerillas. Gary Lane, reporter for CBN, says he’s known Stendal for over 12 years. Stendal’s heart has been to share the Gospel with the violent FARC group. Lane describes him as being devoted to bringing Colombians to Christ.

Sources of the Associated Press say Stendal moved to Colombia with his family as a small child. His parents were also missionaries.

Greg Musselman of Voice of the Martyrs told MNN last week that Stendal has been air-dropping Christian literature, Bibles, and small radios into dangerous parts of Colombia for a long time. Musselman says he’s also been kidnapped five times.

Pray that Stendal and his family would remain faithful, despite opposition. Ask God to make Himself known in Colombia and to bring an end to the violence.