Friday, 22 January 2021

More Christmas cards

We received 4 more Christmas cards yesterday from Poole, West Wellow and the New Forest/Southampton area. Our thanks go to the senders.

Pastor Nemias (Nehemiah) tells me that he has 4 or 5 new converts to baptize soon, which he plans to do in February. This is at the EAB/ACEV church at Flores in the State of Pernambuco.

I have also had long discussions with pastor Ângelo (Soledade). All is going quite well there praise the Lord. 

We still have no sign of the start of our rainy season. It should have started by now. Please pray.

We are encouraged by the excellent work being done by a young woman called Isabela. She is the daughter of pastor Robério and Paula at Tavares but she has been ministering especially amongst the youth at Conceição and Ibiara. She has been a real blessing and encouragement at these churches. Please pray for Isabela.   

Wednesday, 20 January 2021

Pastoral meeting

 We had another good meeting with our assistant pastor Rafael last night. We discussed a variety of topics like dedicating babies (we have one awaiting dedication), receiving new members into fellowship (we have a sister waiting for this) and other pastoral care issues. It was a lovely meeting. We are seeking to pass on to younger pastors at this time something of our 49 years' experience.

Our 21 year old granddaughter Louisa is flying back today to Brazil from England where she has been with her parents and brothers for a few months. Louisa had a negative Covid test to be able to fly. She left Heathrow this morning and is now at Frankfurt airport awaiting a flight overnight to São Paulo. She will fly up to Recife tomorrow morning where she will be met by Lynn and her husband Hutan who will bring her to Patos. Louisa will stay in quarantine for two weeks with them before moving to live with us. Please pray for Louisa's travels. 

Tuesday, 19 January 2021

Rains are late

 The rainy season is running late here. Please pray for rain for us. The rains normally fall here between January and May but so far we have had none. The lake at Green Pastures is bone dry. With temperatures reaching 37 or 38 degrees daily, and with no rain for ages, it makes for dry barren scenery with lakes evaporating fast. We have many watering tanks at Green Pastures for wildlife and we have 2 automatic Bushnell cameras which show us how much wild cats, foxes, armadillos, racoons, monkeys and birds appreciate the water. I post 30 second videos every day on Facebook showing what turns up at our watering holes. Our aim in publishing these moments is to show the beauty of God's creation and encourage people in our part of the world to care for it. 

Thanks to those who prayed for our friend and pastor Jorge Noda of the Presbyterian church who had been in hospital with Covid 19. I am glad to report that he has recovered and has been sent home much to his delight. He has clearly been through quite an ordeal as was obvious when I saw him on a video link. He looked quite frail. Please pray that he will soon get stronger.

This evening Liz and I will be having a meeting with our assistant pastor Rafael to discuss different aspects of the Patos church. We always hold such meetings in the evenings so that we can hold them in our garden in the open air with appropriate masks and social distancing. We value your prayers.

Friday, 15 January 2021

Run out of Oxygen

 The northern city of Manaus in the Amazon region is in a catastrophic state owing to a new variant of Covid 19. Hospitals are beyond capacity and have run out of oxygen. The Federal Government continues to be very negligent. The situation in Brazil is quite horrific. We are only behind the USA in the number of deaths. 

I have been talking to Pastor Nemias (Nehemiah) whose brother-in-law has died of a heart attack aged 64. 

A team has been to visit the Market Garden Project at Glória Community in Imaculada County and was so happy to see how it is flourishing. You can see photos on Facebook and Instagram but you need to remember that the wonderful green plants and produce is in the middle of a severe drought as the rainy season has yet to start. The project benefits 8 families. 

A wealthy person was impressed by EAB's serious approach to its projects and work and decided to make a donation to our foodbank. She has donated 45 kg of couscous, 30 kg of spaghetti, 40 kg of rice, 10 kg of coffee, 60 kg of sugar and 30 kg of beans. All glory be to God as this will help quite a few very needy people. 

Thursday, 14 January 2021

10 Baptized

 Pastor Gersé is at Filipe Village in Saboeiro County in the State of Ceará as I said earlier in this blog he was going to. Yesterday he baptized 10 so it was well worth the long journey to get there! It was funny because when he got to Filipe the local pastor told him, his wife and another couple that had gone in the car with him, that he couldn't put them up as his son and family had arrived. Gersé phoned me to ask what to do as they had been offered the hard church benches to sleep on! I told him I would treat them to some sort of bed and breakfast place as they needed to sleep! They were happy and relieved! 

Last night Liz and I had another counselling session with a brother from the Patos church. 

You may be interested to read the latest edition of Tearfund's Tear Times as it has a lot about ACEV/EAB's work supplying water to the thirsty via underground dams and wells in partnership with Tearfund. If you don't have a copy of Tear Times you can order it free from Tearfund online.

You may have heard that Brazil now has a new variant of Covid 19. All flights to the UK have been cancelled. We value yet more your prayers.

Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Shock

 We were shocked by the news this morning of the death during the night of Pastor Samuel Veras of the First Congregational Church in Campina Grande. The cause was Covid 19. I preached at his church many years ago. Pastor Samuel was a well known minister for over 30 years of this fine evangelical church. Please pray for his family and church at this difficult time.

Please also pray for a young mother called Najla from our church in Patos who tested positive for Covid 19 yesterday. Her husband Kecinho, who's a PE teacher, and their daughter are in self isolation with Najla.

I have spoken to Pastor Nezinho Abílio who tells me that his 91 year old father is improving from Covid 19. He is walking again and his pain and cough have improved. Please continue to pray for 91 year old Antônio Abílio and all the family, including our pastor, who are looking after Antônio and in self isolation with him. 

Monday, 11 January 2021

Christmas Cards

This morning I have written a few lines of thanks to folks in the UK who were kind enough to send us Christmas cards. They have just arrived as is often the case with the old fashioned postal service.

Please add to your prayer list Pastor Jorge Noda who is in hospital with Covid 19. He is a Presbyterian pastor who is a friend. He preached at a Patos Bible College graduation service a few years ago.

This morning I had a good chat with our Pastor Maésio from our Teixeira church. He and his family are going to have a break in João Pessoa till the end of the month.

I also talked to Maílson who is the bass player in the Patos Worship group. He also has been studying online at Bible College but had to halt his studies as he lost his job as the company he worked for went bust. He is a lovely sincere brother and I just felt we should pay for his studies this year so that he can continue. He broke down in tears of joy! Praise the Lord! Please pray for Mailson and his studies.