Bob's Testimony and Background

I was born into a Christian family. Both my mother and my father were careful to raise the six of us children in the ways of the Lord. My parents were missionaries in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas, later moving to Missouri where they worked with the American Sunday School Union.

When we were both still pre-schoolers, Daddy, who had a special gift in sharing the Bible with children, would take my older sister and me with him to the rural schools where he would have Bible classes with the children. As a result we heard the gospel again and again. When I was seven years old my family moved to Brazil to work with the New Tribes Mission. It was at an early age that I gave my life to the Lord.

I had my second through fourth grades at the New Tribes Mission School for missionary children in Vianopolis, Brazil, and my last three years of high school at the New Tribes Mission School in Tambo, Bolivia.

I am especially thankful for the years that I had at Tambo and for their influence upon my life. After graduating from Tambo, I had a year at Seattle Pacific College, and then I graduated from the Moody Bible Institute. It was at Moody that I met Noél. We were married in January of 1966.


Noél's Testimony and Background

I was born in Southern Illinois. My dad wanted to serve in the military, in WW2, but it was discovered that he had a heart condition and could not do active service. Dad obtained a job with the U.S. government, and we moved to Washington D.C. when I was 3. My folks were not active church-goers, but sometimes mom attended a Presbyterian church.

When I was 10, my parents began buying a house in Virginia, but Dad became ill with his heart condition. When I began junior high school a new friend invited me to a Youth for Christ rally and I for the first time heard the gospel clearly. I received Christ as my Saviour. Because of my dad’s illness my parents were upset when I tried to tell them about my relationship with God and prohibited me from attending YFC.

Dad died just before I turned 13. My early teen years were difficult with mom not understanding about my desire to serve the Lord. Later, however, she allowed me to attend YFC and an independent Baptist church which helped me grow in the Lord. When I was 16, I was baptized and felt God’s call to be a missionary.

At first my mom opposed me going to Moody Bible Institute, but later she supported me. I met Bob there and interest began with both of us on a summer missions trip to Peru in 1965. After finishing Moody, I went to Biola School of Missionary Medicine in California and obtained a vocational nurse’s license.

Even though at first my mom opposed us going independently to the mission field, she later faithfully supported us and visited us. I am very thankful for all my dear mom has done for us and we are sure that she came to know the Lord personally and has been with Him since her passing away in 2000.


Bob's Vision For Spreading the Gospel

God didn’t let me forget Peru, however, and finally in October of 1966 we left the training camp and New Tribes Mission, arriving in Lima, Peru in January of 1967.

Though his main job in Manaus, Brazil was in the city as supply man for the people working in the tribes in the jungle, Bob's dad Robert Rich, would go on Saturdays and Sundays along the trails that led out of the city, visiting every house along the way and sharing the gospel with the people he met. He took us boys with him. Several churches were established.

During my time at Moody Bible Institute, I got involved with a group called Reapers of the Harvest, led by Peter Hocking, a missionary kid from Peru. We had a daily time of prayer for missionary work, and on two of my Christmas vacations I was able to go to Mexico to do literature distribution and share the gospel. Since I already spoke some Spanish, I also did some preaching.

Below: An interactive map of Peru and Arequipa, the city where we live.

Also, for two of my summer vacations, 1964 and 1965, I was able to come to Peru to share with the people here in the mountain towns, there being very little gospel work among them at that time. Upon graduating from Moody, our intention was to work with the New Tribes Mission in extending the gospel to the jungle tribes, and to that end we attended their training camp in Pennsylvania.

God didn’t let me forget Peru, however, and finally in October of 1966 we left the training camp and New Tribes Mission, arriving in Lima, Peru in January of 1967. Our trust was in the Lord who had promised to be with us to the end of the world.


Noél's Vision For Spreading the Gospel

He informed me that Adoniram Judson lost 4 children and a wife for the Lord’s service. I was pretty discouraged then, but God intervened...

I definitely share Bob’s vision in spreading the Gospel. Just before we came to Peru, our first child, Terri Lynn, was born. We had agreed with another couple we had known from Moody, to work together in a mountain area called Huancavelica in south central Peru.

However, after a few weeks, this couple returned to the U.S. and Bob, little Terri, and I were alone. Bob had gone to Huancavelica and rented us an apartment. We went up by train, which was the only mode of transport to this place in early March. It was the rainy season.

We had not brought much to Peru with us from the U.S., just a few suitcases, baby things and ourselves. We purchased a stove in Lima and it was supposed to come up on a train following us.

However, heavy rains caused landslides and the railroad was washed out. No more trains came up after us, so our Lima purchases did not arrive. We found that there was no water in Huancavelica when we arrived, and the apartment was not at all ready to move into.

We went to the only “hostal” there and slept the first very cold nights in a crowded hall, with no water, a very smelly common bathroom at the end of this hall, and a very sick little baby.

There were no disposable diapers then, we didn’t have our things, and there was no water for days. It was very discouraging for me to say the least. Finally the apartment was “ready”. We moved in, but it truly was lacking much.

Bob made some crude furniture out of Bible boxes. We bought a camp kerosene stove and I learned to pump it. The water came on and we had it part of the days. No warm water, but we were thankful for water! I washed diapers and everything by hand and it was fine.

Bob and I were fine in the altitude (12,000 ft. approximately), but little 3 month old Terri was not. She could not keep even weak tea down. A doctor we saw there said we would have to take her down to a lower altitude, but Bob definitely felt called to Huancavelica and did not want to move.

He informed me that Adoniram Judson lost 4 children and a wife for the Lord’s service. I was pretty discouraged then, but God intervened. We received a telegram -no phone in those days- saying we had to go down to Lima to receive our residency papers which had taken months to process.

Bob thought we would just go to Huancayo to phone, but when we did that, they insisted we go down to Lima. On the train going down, our 5 month old Terri, was healed! She couldn’t get enough milk!! She did not vomit at all. In the altitude she vomited everything that she swallowed. She yelled with hunger!

In Lima Terri was well. A pediatrician advised us not to take her up to the altitude for some time. We then went to Brasil and I met my parents in law for the first time. They also advised Bob not to go back to the altitude.

Back in Lima, we prayed with Peter Hocking – on our knees – over a map of Peru. He thought that the southern coast of Peru was lacking in Gospel work. Bob made a survey trip and we ended up moving to Mollendo, on the Pacific ocean in August 1967. By the way, mid May, just after we left Huancavelica, our stove and other things we had bought in Lima arrived there!

Our two sons, Paul and Mark, were born in Mollendo. We took them up to the mountains as infants and they had no trouble. Terri slowly became able to digest in lower altitudes and by the time she was 3 years old, in December of 1969 we moved up to Arequipa, (about 7,500 ft. altitude) to work with the Bob Riggenbach family.


We thank the Lord for our four children: Terri, Paul, Mark and Joseph. Behold, children are a gift of the Lord; the fruit of the womb is a reward. Psalm 127:3. During the time that our children were in our home, our children were Noél’s primary ministry. Every night she would have a time of reading with them, teaching them the ways of the Lord, and praying with each one of them individually.

During that time I had meetings most of the evenings and travelled to the towns in the work of evangelism and church planting, but when I could, I would join them in their devotional time. We see much neglect in the raising of godly families in our culture around us. Much of my teaching in the churches centers around the need to train and teach our children in the ways of the Lord.


Our Desire to Do God’s Work in God’s Way

When they had preached the gospel to that city and had made many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch, strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them...Acts 14:21-23

From the very beginning of our time in Peru we have tried to model our work upon New Testament principles. We recognize our deficiencies in the fulfilling of our goals in this area, but the sincere desire is there.

First of all, we see in the New Testament that the evangelism of the apostles resulted in the establishment of local churches. Thus our goal is to see churches established in every town.

It would be impossible for us to see trained pastors from outside established in each of the churches, especially in small towns with a poor economic base; so the answer is to see local men raised up to lead the churches even as we see in the work of the apostles in Acts 14:21-23.

God has permitted us to take on some other ministries in recent years in addition to the church planting ministry. The church planting ministry, however, should be considered primary, and the other ministries only an aid in the goal of evangelism, of building up the believers in the faith and strengthening the local churches.


Noél's Notes on Adoption and Ministry

As I am an only child, (my parents had one more baby boy when I was 5, but because he was born so prematurely he died after 48 hrs.) I always wanted brothers and sisters, and had a real desire to adopt.

When our biological children were teenagers, we adopted an abandoned baby boy, our son Joseph. This led me into a ministry helping others adopt, and we took care of several children in our home during some 10 years. Thankfully, many of these are now in Christian homes, some in other missionary homes, and some in Peruvian Christian homes.

Though my main ministry was raising our own children and teaching them the Word of God, I always taught children’s classes, in our churches and in a state run boy’s home, and lately, since our children have been grown, in Christian schools.

I love teaching God’s Word to kids! This requires much time in preparing materials, both for teaching the Bible and English, but it is a real investment in lives.

Also I have discipled ladies. For years I read the Word of God weekly, one on one, to different ladies, some of whom came to Christ. Besides supervising Sunday school, and providing materials for that, I lead a weekly ladies meeting in our main church.


New Prayercard!

Keep us in mind by printing our most recent prayercard! It prints on 5x7.

About Us

We are Bob and Noél Rich, followers of Jesus Christ. We came to Peru over forty five years ago and have seen God do some amazing things. Bob and Noél Rich Visit our About Us page to see more info about us.

Missionary Stories

Visit our Missionary Stories page to read about some interesting and unusual stories from the mission field.

Support Address

You can be a part of this work! Our support address is:

Christian Missions in Many Lands, Inc. P.O. Box 13,
Spring Lake, NJ, 07762

please include a note stating for Bob and Noél Rich in Perú. Thank you!

Photo Galleries

View our Photo Galleries to see the work in Peru, South America. Photo Galleries

The Story of the Bible

A new book written by Beverly Hubbard, Bob's sister. Order a copy here. Watch the trailer below!

Audio Messages

Click on the Audio Messages section to hear some of Bob's messages in Spanish.

There are also sound excerpts from the brothers and sisters and more.

Spanish Website

We also have a new Spanish web site! Visit it here.
Visite nuestra página de web en español aquí.

Video Clips

Click on the Videos section to see and hear about the work in Peru. Videos

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