‘A Colporteur Knocked on My Door and Changed the Life of My Family’

Three generations are church members thanks to a booklet with a message of hope.

Liseht Santos, South American Division, and Adventist Review
‘A Colporteur Knocked on My Door and Changed the Life of My Family’
For Zenon Quispe, rain can’t stop his literature evangelism ministry. [Photo: courtesy of Zenon Quispe]

More than 50 years ago, on a spring morning, a young woman in Peru opened her front door when a colporteur called, and he showed her some literature published by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The young woman was unable to purchase the books but kept a gift booklet on a shelf in her home. She did not know that years later, her husband would find that booklet and that its message would change the lives of everyone in her family.

This is the story of Zenon Quispe and his family. Zenon’s father, who was suffering from a serious condition, was bedridden, and he saw a booklet titled Christ, the Only Solution stored on a shelf above his bed. After he read the booklet, he fell in love with its contents. He then sold the only cow they had to buy a Bible. The man decided to look for a church in the city of Arequipa, began Bible studies, and soon he also noticed changes in his health and home.

Out of that experience, the man’s son, Zenon, decided to devote his working life to being a full-time colporteur. “My goal was always giving hope to more and more people through Adventist literature,” he said. Zenon has been selling Adventist books for 24 years now. It is also the way he met his wife, Maria, also an Adventist literature salesperson. Together, they have educated two children and support them to attend Peruvian Adventist University.

Many people have decided to accept Jesus and request baptism thanks to the literature  Zenon has distributed. Some of them are attending churches close to their homes. He’s still in touch with 10 of them, he said, but Zenon knows there are many more.

“Every day is a miracle from God. Meeting many people, visiting homes, sharing the gospel,” Zenon said. “Many people are in crisis, so my wife and I pray with them in their homes. We usually arrive at the right time, and we let ourselves be used by God. Our daily consecration is essential, as we ask the Holy Spirit to accompany us.”

Selling Adventist literature is not just a job, it’s a call to mission, Zenon says. When facing challenges through the years, Zenon says, time after time he has found hope and courage in Isaiah 45:2, 3 in the Bible: “ ‘I will go before you and make the crooked places straight,’ ” Zenon reads. “ ‘I will break in pieces the gates of bronze and cut the bars of iron. I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that I, the Lord, who call you by your name, am the God of Israel’ ” (NKJV).

The original version of this story was posted on the South American Division Spanish-language news site.

Liseht Santos, South American Division, and Adventist Review