Sister Stories - Cornerstone Church Kingston
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Sister Stories

This podcast encourages us to reflect on how the Lord has grown and moulded us into becoming more like Christ.

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S3 - 11. Regina K.

In this episode, I am interviewing Regina, who is originally from Bolivia and came to the UK eight years ago. She is married to Phil and they have a young son. She also works part-time as a cleaner and receptionist at Kingston University. Listen to hear about her childhood in Bolivia and how the Lord used the charity Compassion ( to bring her to faith.

Transcript (Auto-generated)

Welcome everyone to the sister stories podcast.

The aim of this podcast is to marvel at god's sovereignty over each of our lives as we're and to encourage 1 another by sharing our stories.

My name is Sophie, and today I am joined by Regina.

Morning, everyone.


So to start to start off, can you tell us a little bit about who you are? My real name is Maria Regina.

I've been living in Europe around 16 years now.

And but in the UK, I am ADS.

I met my husband at Colston Church.

I married to him.


And I have a little boy, Sebastian, I work at the university.

I do early morning cleaning, and also I do the receptionist job in the same place.

Yeah, we live just in chess in and Yeah.


That that's who I am.



So we're going to be talking about your, your walk with Jesus and and there's a lot of.

And, but can you start with telling us about your family background where you were brought up? Yes.

I'm originally from Bolivia, a city called Coachevamba.

And, I am 5.

I have my brother, my older brother, my younger sister, and, mom, that pass away many years ago.

Yes, I grew up I will say in a extreme poverty when I was little.

It was bad because many times we have to go to bed without food many times.

We didn't know what to wear in clothes because we didn't have.

So it was a hard time And then that time also, we couldn't we didn't have easy access to water.

And then at school, I used to hear my classmates saying, oh, you are poor, you are this, and you are all that kind of thing.

So, yes, it was done.

And, yeah, we I think as a child, it's not something you want to it's how it's not how you you want your life.


But is what it it is in that moment.


And what's about, your family's beliefs and faith? Did they have a faith in god, or Not at all? At my dad, when I was 4 years old.

I remember my dad used to help the pastor a charge.

In Bolivia.

And then but then 1 day, Why? I don't know, but he just gave up the church and took us away from church.

And but still they said the knowledge about god, about Jesus.

It wasn't him, but he didn't want it any contact with church.




Did you ever find out why, or you don't you still don't know? I, yes, I ask him many times 1 is this.

But the Lianza.

I got this.

You only need to know.

He said, whenever you do, wherever you go, read your Bible, and pray to god.

That that is something I carry with me whole time because it's the only thing.

He didn't go into more details.

But he was like a really, really didn't want it to go back to church anymore.





So can you take us through the rest of of your life, of your childhood, especially what happens next for you? And, yeah.


When we were a child, we for my parents, it was hard in a way, like, to to afford the rent.

We used to live just in 1 small room, but even that small price of the rent.

We couldn't pay.

They couldn't pay.

So every month, we had to find another another place.

In the end, we ended in a place, very big land, a very small, small house.

She was falling apart.

And then the neighbor was a elderly lady Christian, and she saw us how we were in the property, how we were dealing with everything, especially she saw my parents At her church, there was an organization running compassion.

Maybe some people know about that, and they she spoke with that the with her church and said, can you help this family? And they come to us.

They ask, ma'am, first time, mom says no.

Because all the time, people say you are not in your thing like that.

And then My mom didn't believe, but they come back second time.

And then we finally went to the compassion, which was a church.


I, for me, that was a miracle.

That was where god was saying.

I didn't forget you.

I didn't forget your family.

I didn't forget you that.

I'm still here.

And our life changed completely.

First of all, I met him.


I met a lot chases.

That's the best thing.

And I wouldn't change anything for that.

And then also, because he's with me.

He's with us.

All things in your mind in your life change.

And then for me, that was good because my family, mom, it's okay.

My sister ended.

She's a teacher at the moment is after the pandemic's a bit suffering for everybody, I would say, but she's a teacher.

My brother is a baker.

I have for, 2 niece and 2 nephews.

And, yeah, it's just Jesus, when he arrived to our lives, everything changed.

It's just amazing.


So did they help you practically with paying the rent or other things, or what did they what this what did this organization do to help you? Well, they help us a lot especially with, giving us clothes, shoes, food, I could go to there and eat at least 3 times a week, 3 days a week, and then I could have nice food Yeah.

And then some times they gave us even, food for to take our home, and then we can we could have that thing And then if we needed something, they we just talk with them because they say anything, please come to us.

And then we went to them, and they help us a lot.

They do medical check for us.

We went to dentists, all the things.

It was they help us a lot I will say what I am now is thanks to god, but thanks to compassion, good help me through compassion and could help me, my family, through compassion, which is something I didn't in my childhood.

But Yeah.

He's Yeah.

He works through many different things in our lives.

Isn't he? And I wonder as well, so you knew about god as a child, as a younger child, but what did you hear about him that was different through compassion? Did you hear the gospel preached more clearly, maybe, or what yeah, what changed in that? In Bolivia, in when I was child, church is always good, but I don't know.

But then they give you the they share the gospel with you, but they come to you like, you have to be afraid.

You have this cat, which is a big thing.

But then in when you are growing, when you when we are in a relationship with him.

You read the Bible, and you press to him.

He changed all the things.


And then I I many times, my prayer was because what I hear from my classmate of whom people saying you're not anything like that.

I used to say, yeah, it's true.

I got I'm not I'm nothing.

I don't have anything.

But I have this heart.

I want this heart you to be in there.


And then whatever happened, you hold me.

Don't let me go because I don't have any place to go.


And that is how my faith grew more, more, and more.

And then I said, Tom, yeah, yes, was going.

I started to help a church in the Sunday school when I was 12 years.

So Oh, wow.

And then I carry on.

And then when I was 15, I think I was a teacher already.

And then for me, it was the best thing because I didn't know outside and judge what's happening.

And then I there are church and compassion I learn.

I want it to be a teacher.

And I I finished high school, I studied to be a teacher.

I was a teacher for 4 years before to Spain before here and before after I moved to UK.

Bayang is, how all the process I saw in my life, I don't think I want to change anything because all the suffering I have, all the poverty, the things I see, I saw my parents suffer on my brother or sister.

Put a a heart on mind more focusing on it.


And then probably if I had all the things.


I wouldn't be where I am now.

And then it's nice to have things.

I think it's nice to have just what you need because you know Yeah.

Who to focus good to look and then who to say thank you.

Because what I have is thanks to you.

And then I leave my off like that for you because everything I have, everything I am, it's just because Yeah.

That's right.


So you said that you moved to Spain afterwards.

How, yeah, when was that? What did you do there? I moved to Spain when I 20 when I was 24 years and I used to work there as a nanny.

I work with 2 families I've been there for 4 year, 9 years, sorry, 9 years.

And the last 4 years, I was studying English, and Why? I don't have an answer for that.

Just, is the the because I think I was tired the the same thing, the same routine.

And then I was just sad, and I wanted to do something.

The different.


But also thinking in the future, like, maybe 1 day it will be good for me to learn English.

So Yeah.

I was.

And then you came to the UK after that? Yes.

I came in the the UK on the 2015 on 15th August.



That's very precise.

I won't forget that date.

I came, East of before August, I came on Eastern to check the land and to say what house the place.

And then I asked a friend if she could help me to come to UK.

And then she said, yes.

And she helped me a lot and I came here.

My first charge was Cornerston.

So I came here and you might remember, maybe, David, Dave, Redington, Linda, and Dave was is a blessing for me because he helped me to be involved a church.

Even if I study in Spain, that 4 years, English, When I came to UK, I spoke with people, and then people look at me like, what does this girl say? They couldn't understand anything.


And then for me, with our side, I wanted to go back to Spain.


But then I think practicing, then they've introduced to me my husband.


And then in the whole UK, my husband was the only 1 who understand my English.


I don't think that's true.

I understood.

Actually, yeah, I understood during this as well.

But that was very fun.


And then I'm here.

It's a just a bleak, beautiful place to live.

And then something I don't share much with people is after I think a man being in the UK, even if he was suffering from me, even I got lost in the underground, in the train at 11:30 in the evening.

I go home 1:30.

I go home, and I said, that's it.

That's it.

But then 1 day being here after a month, I had that feeling like saying god is telling me This is your place.

It's done.

You're here now.


I had that piece.

And then for good to for fun.

You will have me here.



We love having you.

Thank you.


Oh, that's great.

And, you got involved at the international cafe, didn't you, which probably helped quite a bit as well.

That that's nice, isn't Yes.

International cafe, I think it's a good thing that Cornerstone church is starting because Many internationals, we come with our cultures.

And sometimes we want to put a culture in a foreign country, which is a bit sad, but is what it with what we are.


But then English people or UK, open the doors for people and then offer mail for free and chat with them.

You I could come to international without any worry.

We started in Wimbledon where Yes.

Dave and Linda Redington took me.

And then I just want it to be who help people because I know many Spanish people.

They want to speak Spanish, but then I tried to encourage them just try your bidding.

Just try a bit.

Just try because it's the only way you we can practice a bit more But, yeah, yeah, international cafe, we should pray for international cafe.



It's a great thing to do, isn't it? Because, yeah, you're right.

When you come to a country, you it can be very puzzling and disorientating that you don't know the language very well.

You don't know the culture very well, maybe, but you have to that's a good place to meet people and to learn and to learn English as well.

Isn't it? Yeah.


So how long have you been married to Phil now? Now 5 years, nearly 3 months.


Very precise.

Very precise.

And and you've you have a little boy, how old is he? He's 2 5 months.


Oh, it goes quickly, doesn't it? Yeah.

So is move on a little bit, actually, what what are you you said your job was at the university at the moment? Your What are you doing there? Yeah.

I do early morning cleaning.

I work from 5 to 8 in the morning.

And then after that, I look after my son.


And then on the weekend, especially Saturday, I do a receptionist job on the at the same university and the library.



So Yeah.


So quite a lot, quite busy She do.


I think everything went up to this time.

And then if I can do a bit more, and, honestly, I think it will be good for my little boy to be with because he's always with me.

And then Yeah.

But, I mean, it's not an excuse, but it's it's something I want to do it if possible.

And, you know, it's not some Saturdays.

I have to say no because otherwise, I don't see my husband you know, because Sundays, we are at church and then whole week he's working.

And yeah.




Of course.

That makes sense.



So, yeah, if we move along a little bit, where would you say you've learned in the last year also, what what has got taught you recently? The I think something is they're not touching me a lot is the grace of god.

Because sometimes I would talk in my experience in Bolivia.

In Bolivia, they, like I said, they terrify us.

Us saying if you don't believe in Chases, you are going to go to the hell hell.

But then in the last year, I'm learning It's good to talk.

What will be the end if we don't come to Jesus, but talk about the grace.

Because God is our father.


If we are parents, we know what these parents for a son because our our children would do many nasty things.

They might behave, but they might not obey us.

They might just have to say when you are saying something, they will reply to you.


They might be rude.

Or yeah.

But then that is not making your law for them to finish.

You are parent, your mom, your dad, you still love your child.

You still love your children.


And then god is the same.


No matter what you did, no matter who you are.


The Christ of God is for everyone.

And he's with his arms open for everyone.

Church is like a hospital.

It should be there for people who are having trouble be there.


And then to see accept them how they are.

And, it's not for us to say you are you're it's not for us to judge.

He has to to keep the grace of God.

I'm learning that a lot, and then I'm learning that, to be the light, you know, the light, wherever you are.

Sometimes as a Christian, people think when they are treating you, but they are making you hard, they you have to be quiet.

And then just like her face.


You don't you just not not you yeah.

Not engage and then Yeah.

Just retreat almost.


You you don't have to be rude.

But you can tell Yeah.

Why you are this to me.

It's it's no reason.


But then that's not, you know, it's, just telling them.

But in general, I would say everybody's welcome to come to Jesus.



I think what you said is important that we need to respond.

We need to be able to respond to people who criticize us, but integrations and the loving way.


That's really important.



And lastly, if you had to give advice to a younger Christian, what what would you say to them? I will say to them, if you are starting, in a Christian life.


You choose a good thing, but it's not easy thing.

Your life, it won't won't change.

Now you are Christian.

Everything will be marvelous.

It's not like that.

We have to say it true.


But when the things turn bad, when the things turn hard, sad or anything, you can come to Jesus always always come to you come to go.

He will hold.

Never ever, if possible.

Go away from god.



We are humans.

Charge fail.

We Christians fail.

Got never.


And then we can't just go to and say, oh, because these people don't talk to me or because these people are in this church.

They were assigned to me.


First thing you do is you we're going to church to praise god, to learn about god, to listen about him, the words, And then we are all together church, and then that has to be our heart.

It's hard.


But if we have caught and we think the first thing is to see him, to focus on him.


Things will be better.

So if you are a new Christian, just carry on holding chasers.

If you feel good and in Cornerstone, please carry on.


We are not perfect, but you are always welcome to come.



That's really important, isn't it? Thank you so much for sharing your story with us, Rahina.

Yeah, it was great to hear that how god has sustained you and kept you even in tough circumstances in your childhood and then throughout your life, really, and you're right.

His grace is and his mercy is just beautiful, isn't it? It's just marvelous for us.

Yeah, thank you so much.

Thank you.

Thank you for now.

Appreciate it.


That's great.

Thanks, everyone, for listening.

That's all for today's episode of this stories, but join us again.

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