April 27, 2015
Dear Prayer Partners,
Greetings in the name of our Lord! Ezekiel 34:26 reads, “…I will cause the rain to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing.” With the rainy season in Northeast Brazil we are enjoying cooler weather, mostly in the 80’s. In this part of Brazil, where water is scarce, we never complain about rain, even when it floods. Last week we got six inches of rain in two hours, flooding many parts of our city and causing damage to the OASIS, where we live! Fortunately the damage was only to some of the retention walls, not affecting the buildings.
The Cariri Baptist Seminary’s annual Missions conference begins tomorrow. This conference is organized and lead by the student missions fellowship of which we are counselors and the students from Jim’s Introduction to Missions class. The primary focus of this year’s conference will be the tribal people of Brazil. Did you know that in Brazil there are 340 distinct native groups which speak over 200 languages and total nearly 1.000.000 souls? The good news: most of the larger tribes have been evangelized. The challenge: many of the smaller remote tribes have not yet heard the Gospel. Please pray that God will shower His blessings on this conference, and that some of our students will be directed to the people groups of His choice.
Two weeks ago Jim taught a three day missions seminar at a local church in Juazeiro, and next month he’ll be speaking at a mission symposium of churches in Natal, on the Northeastern tip of Brazil. Both Jim and Julie have a full calendar of speaking engagements in area churches. Julie, in particular, is overwhelmed with a heavier than normal teaching load this semester. We are blessed with these teaching opportunities, and ask you to pray for our health and strength so that we can give our best.
Earlier this month Jim’s Personal Evangelism students spent a day at a local public school teaching each class about the Real Meaning of Easter. Next week they will spend a day in a community about one hour to the north of our campus putting into practice what they’ve learned about rural evangelism. In a few weeks they will be out again with door-to-door evangelism and an open-air evangelistic meeting in the Parque Grangeiro close to the location of our new church construction. Please pray that God will shower His blessings on these evangelism efforts. Our hope is that these class assignments will create in the students a passion for evangelism.
We have begun plans for the construction of a building for the church in Parque Grangeiro. It is great to have a building committee made up of men from both the church plant and the mother church. God has blessed us with resources to build the ground floor/basement level. Please pray that he will provide the finances so that we can at least get the main floor auditorium level framed and covered by the end of this year.
Last month we enjoyed a week at Iguaçu Falls with the Baptist Mid-Missions family from All-Brazil. Missionaries from Peru and Argentina also joined us. The scenery was awesome, the fellowship was great, and the ministry from God’s Word was a great blessing. At this conference new officers were elected which relieved Jim from some of his administrative duties with the Field Council. It’s not that he doesn’t wish to serve, but we are planning to take a six month furlough later this year. We should be visiting about half of our support team which we haven’t seen for over five years.
Thank you for your love, prayers and support as we continue receiving showers of God’s blessings in Northeast Brazil.