April 28, 2011

Quality Of Life Project in Guarujá

We held our Qualidade De Vida project in a state school in Guarujá this week on Monday morning, Tuesday night, and Wednesday afternoon. The EE Rene Rodriguez school is for students in 5th grade through high school, and it also has classes for adults at night. Once again God prepared a great harvest ahead of us, and many students and teachers were ready and willing to hear the wonderful news of Jesus. The reception at the school was great, and the teachers and leaders very much liked and appreciated the project and our help. After 3 days of speaking in the classes, 604 students and 11 teachers and the principal accepted Christ and committed their lives to Him. We praise God for what He has done, and we pray that He will continue to do more in the hearts and lives of those who received Christ. The school also recommended us to 4 other schools in Guarujá, and also wants us to come back and speak to the parents at a future parents meeting. The only negative thing that happened during our project was that the church nearby that had agreed to help us did not send anyone to help. A few of the students asked us if we knew of a good church they could visit, and so our interpreters that helped us told them about their churches.

April 24, 2011

Happy Easter / Feliz Pascoa

We want to wish everyone a Happy Easter / Feliz Pascoa. Jesus' resurrection is an important truth in the Christian faith. Without the resurrection Jesus would be just another religious leader, just a teacher, just another human being. But by God's divine power Jesus rose again from the grave, and He now lives. The gift of eternal life in heaven is available to everyone because of Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection. The gift of abundant, full, meaningful life filled with joy and purpose is also available to those who put their faith and confidence in Jesus, because Jesus lives. Jesus IS the source of life - abundant life and eternal life.

 "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to 
the Father except through me."  - John 14:6

"He told them, this is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the 
dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will 
be preached in his name to all nations..."   - Luke 24:46-47

"If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith... And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins... But Christ 
has indeed been raised from the dead...    - I Corinthians 15:14,17,20

"And Jesus Christ our Lord was shown to be the Son of God when God powerfully raised him from the dead by means of the Holy Spirit.   - Romans 1:4
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ ! In his great mercy 
he has given us new birth into a living hope through the 
resurrection of Jesus from the dead..."  - I Peter 1:3

April 22, 2011

Dia Da Paixão

Today is Good Friday in the US, and is called "Dia Da Paixão" (Passion Day) here in Brazil. I like the Brazilian name better than the English name for today, because this day is all about Jesus' love and passion for us. On this very special day Jesus died on the cross to pay the price for our sins, so that we could have a restored personal relationship with God, peace with Him, and eternal life in heaven with Him. On the 3rd day (Easter) Jesus rose from the grave and now He lives and reigns in heaven, awaiting the appointed day that He will return to bring all of His believers and followers back to our eternal home in heaven.

We were invited to join Capela Calvario in São Vicente to celebrate with them what Jesus has done for us on the cross, and I had the privilege of speaking in their "Culto Da Paixão" (Good Friday service). The special event was held at a club in São Vicente, and afterwards we joined the church for a great meal of "churrasco" (Brazilian BBQ) and wonderful fun and fellowship. Pr. Celso was my interpreter and at the end of the service we shared the Good News of Jesus and 5 people accepted Christ as their Lord & Savior and committed their lives to Him.

April 21, 2011

Double Holiday

Today is the first day of a double holiday in Brazil, combining a Brazilian holiday known as "Tiradentes" with the Easter weekend. Normally these 2 holidays are not together, but because Easter is late this year they fall in the same week. Whenever there are holidays that fall on or near weekends, giving an extended weekend, hundreds of thousands of people leave large cities like Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro in droves. Many go to the country, and even more go to the coastal areas and beaches like Santos and surrounding cities. Our coastal area is known as the "Baixada Santista" and includes 10 different cities. It is expected that between 300,000 to 400,000 cars will leave Sao Paulo to visit the coast for the extended Easter weekend. 

April 18, 2011

New Partnership With A Church

We have recently begun to work with Capela Calvario in the city of Sao Vicente to help them to share Christ in their community. One of our interpreters, Patricia, who has helped us in a couple of schools, is a member of the church. The church is led by Pastor Celso and Pastor Chris, who is from Germany. We will be working with them in a school near the church in May, and we will also be leading a People Sharing Jesus seminar at the church on 2 Sunday mornings in May. Last night I had the privilege of preaching in the Sunday night service at Capela Calvario. In Brazil the night service is the main service on Sunday, unlike the US where the morning service is the largest attended service. Pastor Chris was my interpreter. We had a great time of worship with our new friends there, and God spoke in a powerful way in the hearts of the people. Towards the end of the service we shared the Gospel and 4 people accepted Christ and committed their lives to Him. I will also have the privilege of speaking in their Good Friday service, and afterwards we will be joining the church for their "churrasco" party. Churrasco is the Brazilian version of BBQ, and it is great.

April 14, 2011

Brazil Photos

The photos below are of a Blue Morpho butterfly. We have not seen any since we moved to Santos, but when we lived in Sao Paulo we would see them in the Sao Paulo Botanical Gardens. They are the most beautiful butterfly we have ever seen, and when the sun hits their wings they look like a bright blue neon color. They almost didn't look real to us when we first saw one. From the bottom side of their wings they look completely different. God has created some amazing creatures for us to enjoy.

"so that people may see and know, may consider and understand, that the hand of the LORD has done this, that the Holy One of Israel has created it."   - Isaiah 41:20

"You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being."  
- Revelation 4:11

April 13, 2011

Outreach With Primeira Igreja Batista Sao Vicente

On Monday morning and Tuesday afternoon we worked with Primeria Igreja Batista Sao Vicente in our project Qualidade De Vida in a state school in Sao Vicente. The school is for students from the 5th grade to high school. The participation of the church was excellent, and we had 4 or 5 people each day from the church to help us to share Jesus with the students and teachers. God did a great work in the hearts of many, and 464 students, 6 teachers, and the school coordinator and vice principal accepted Christ and committed their lives to Him. Another blessing is that the school wants more help from the church to help students & families, and the vice principal Fabiana has already spoken to one of the pastors from the church, Pr. Dener, when he was with us on Monday.

April 10, 2011

Speaking To A Young Adults Group

Last night I spoke to the young adults group at Ministerio Evangelico Meshareth in Praia Grande. Leandro is one of the leaders of the "jovens" (young adults) group in the church, and we know him from our project in the schools. He is a teacher in a municipal school in Praia Grande, and he has helped us recently as an interpreter in one of the schools we spoke in several weeks ago. He is a blessing to us, as he is very enthusiastic to help us to reach students & teachers for Jesus, and he is a good interpreter, and he has recommended us to other schools in Praia Grande - which should help open more doors for us to share Jesus in these schools. Last night Leandro helped as my interpreter.

The service started 30 minutes late, which is fairly common here in Brazil. The theme for the night was American night, since we are American missionaries. There were many more people who came than just the young adult group of the church, and there we a good crowd in the service. I spoke about God's call and his mission to reach and save lost people, and how He calls all of us to join Him in His redemptive Kingdom work. God spoke to many hearts, and they received the message enthusiastically. We also shared the Gospel and 1 young man received Christ and committed his life to Him.