Missionaries Return Home

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A missionary team is landed in Fargo this morning after being accused as spies and detained in Venezuela.

The Bethel Evangelical Free Church missionary team gave details on why and how they were treated in custody.

With a look of hope in their eyes, many were ready to see their loved ones after their arrival to Fargo.

Desiree Bouvette, Russ Petty, Arlynn Hefta, and Kermit Paulson took the trip this past month to Venezuela to provide medical care, hearing aids and haircuts like they have for the past 14 years. This year was different than any other.

Arlynn Hefta of the group said, “Venezuelan military pulled up with numerous vehicles, and a number of soldiers with rifles came…”

They were told they did not have the proper work visas and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro apparently was saying that they were actually spies.

“…A number of soldiers with rifles came into the church where we had our clinic set up, they interviewed the Venezuelan churches, city leaders, and said we had to stop and go there. Go with them,” said Hefta.

While detained they felt like the Venezuelan authorities were teasing them for three days.

Russ Petty helped with the medical care while in Venezuela and said, “We’d wait 8 hours and didn’t hear anything then they would come back and say what you’ve done is a very serious thing, you need to be punished for this and then a couple hours later say oh this is good so just the vacillating back and forth like that.”

Even after all of this happening, would the missionaries ever go back?

When asked about returning Kermit Paulson said, “Missionaries have been coming and going for a number of years, that this they’re probably saying this is like any other time i mean their love of God is going to carry them on and keep them going and that’s going to be the same way with us.”

Team was deported from the country, so they can’t make the trip back to the Venezuela for at least two years.