November 12, 2014
Dear Prayer Partners,
Greetings in the name of our Lord! It is He who keeps us safe in His loving care, as we read in Proverbs 21:31, “safety is of the Lord.”
Since we last wrote to you we have spoken at three church conferences. We enjoyed wonderful fellowship, rejoiced at the growth in the churches, and praise God for the opportunities to strengthen God’s people with His Word. These conferences also represent many hours on treacherous roads where God’s hand has kept us safe. Our single biggest danger in Brazil are the crazy driving conditions and poor emergency medical care. Please pray for the Lord’s safety.
Last week a man from one of our churches, a policeman, was shot to death as he was preventing a robbery in the center of Crato. The aftermath of this murder has been the death of at least six young men, all involved in drugs and gangs. The killings are carried out by masked vigilante groups, many of whom are suspected to be disguised police officers, but no one dares to prove this. Our second biggest danger in Brazil would be an armed robbery. A recent report showed that every ten minutes there is a murder committed in Brazil. Again, please pray for the Lord’s safety. By the way, the funeral of the murdered brother was a wonderful opportunity for hundreds of unbelievers to hear the Gospel. Many spoke of his integrity as an officer. Franciê left a wife, Lydia, who is 8 months pregnant and a 9 year-old son. Pray for God’s care and comfort.
We have been praying for a new director for the Source of Light Bible Correspondence School. Geandro, a Bible college student who will be graduating next month, has agreed to fill this position. Geandro and his wife, Gicélia, have 2 children, and are members of one of our area churches. While preparing for the ministry, his church had him pastor a daughter church in a neighboring city. Geandro plans to continue serving as a missionary church-planter in that city and will also assume the leadership of the correspondence school. Thank you to those who have been praying for this special need.
Two of the churches with which we have worked in Juazeiro are currently without a pastor. Jim has been working closely with one of these churches in its search for a new pastor. The Igreja Batista Fonte de Luz has done a self-study, identifying the membership, ministries, and special needs. Based on this study they are now looking at possible candidates for pastor. Please pray for God’s clear leading in this choice. Also pray for God’s protection on our pastors. They are constantly assaulted with temptations which, if not properly cared for, could take them out of the ministry. Sadly, we have lost 4 of our local pastors this year.
As treasurer of Baptist Mid-Missions’ Brazil Field, Jim has been helping plan a Family Conference for our missionaries from across Brazil, as well as from other South American countries. This conference will be held in Iguazu Falls on March 16-20, 2015. Dr. Kevin Bauder will bless us with messages based on the theme, “The Pleasures of God”. If you would like to join us for this conference, with a great group of missionaries at one of the most beautiful places on earth, we would be glad to send you information.
We plan to take a semester furlough the last half of 2015, in order to visit our support team which we didn’t see on our last short furlough in 2012. Thank you for your prayers for the Lord’s safety on our behalf, as we serve Him in Northeast Brazil,