Monday, 30 May 2016

Philip back in the USA

Philip is safely in his hotel in North Carolina, USA on business. He'll be back on Friday (DV). Please remember him in your prayers. He's taken my mobile phone as he needed it to demonstrate something or other to a client so I'm without mobile phone connections this week. That's what Dads are for!

Last night's service was really lovely

The service this Sunday night was really blessed in Patos. A full church as always, including the overflow hall, and great P&W + the sermon went well too. A technical hitch with the computer partially messed up the digital projector, but that was overcome. Of course all was extra special with Liz back in church. That was wonderful. She's naturally a bit tired today but slowly does it and she will rebuild her energy.

I went for a long walk at Green Pastures this morning. I try to get in 3 walks a week. Now the rains have passed (we may get an odd shower but that's it) the tracks have been worked on and trimmed so I was checking them and clicking my camera from time to time as usual. Nature is relaxing and inspiring.

I had a meeting with the Patos Congregational Church pastor this afternoon. I think he just wanted to let off steam about things with me. We've known each other for years.

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Liz back in church!

The Sunday night service was beautiful tonight and Liz was there throughout. God is good!

Liz is going to Church

I am very happy because Liz is getting ready to go to church! PTL! We'll leave 15 minutes earlier than usual to allow time for manoeuevres with the wheelchair. Watch this space!

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Ready to Preach tomorrow

I completed my sermon preparation for this Sunday by lunchtime today. 

I also have worked on some reorganization issues of the work here following the Field Conference and finalized the lining up of new leaders for the Ibiara church to take over on June 11th. Please pray.

Philip flies to the USA tomorrow but should be back on Friday night.

Our eldest daughter was mugged yesterday evening. Please pray for her as it does shake you up. Stole her mobile phone. Violence fuelled by drugs is staggeringly on the increase here in the interior.

Concern increases with the very low water levels in the reservoirs. The average of the five reservoirs which Patos depends on are under 20% capacity levels with the rainy season now over. Rain unlikely till 2017 now. The main reservoir from where our pipeline comes is down to 8.5% capacity.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Funeral via Skype

This morning Liz and I attended virtually Liz's Aunty Gwen's Funeral Celebration of her 95 year long life held at the Lighthouse Community Church near Southampton in England via Skype. It was a lovely service with a very good internet link. We were able to chat to plenty of people after the service who were there.

I have prepared the Bible Study which I am off to church to give now. I have also been working on my sermon for Sunday too.

Liz has just received a visit from a doctor friend and prior to this had a meeting with a church leader concerning the Sunday School. Liz never stops!

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Learning from Nature with good exercise

Walking through Green Pastures is my exercise hopefully 3 times a week. It is relaxing, educational and inspiring. To create and maintain a Nature Reserve in NE Brazil is a challenge and a great pleasure. 

This week our infra-red camera has registered good 30 second videos of South American Racoons, Limpkins, Rufescent Tiger-Herons and Roadside Hawks. The interesting thing was to go to the spot in the stream where the Racoon was filmed eating a toad and find left in the water the poisonous toad's skin which he had peeled off with his claws before eating - and all in the dark!

Today a Crane Hawk was flying overhead as I walked and calling loudly. I bumped straight into a Stripe-backed Antbird in its usual part of the Reserve and it pursued in calling out loudly too as it likes to do. It is interesting how we know where a lot of species always hang out. I walked through some dense undergrowth and wild guinea pigs were scampering in all directions as were a number of giant Teju lizards.

Every time I go to Green Pastures something is different. Some flowers finish flowering and others start. Different insects may be in action and all types of fauna are on the move. God's creation is absolutely amazing!

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Field Conference News

I have dispatched the latest EAB Nutshell Update today with all the news from the Field Conference. I have been doing a lot of follow up work from the Conference too. Lots of reports to file and issues needing loose ends tied up. See scenes from the final celebration of the Conference below.

Monday, 23 May 2016

Great Field Conference!

The annual EAB/ACEV Field Conference went off great. It was a real blessing. It gave us much personal joy to see our son Philip given probationary pastoral status together with two other excellent leaders. 

It was lovely too that Liz was able to be there for the final Conference celebration and she even gave a word. The church was packed with many unable to get in there up in the mountains at Matureia. The new leadership team was chosen and took up office in the service so it was good that she was there for that.

There will be more news to follow as soon as I can get to it. Thanks for your prayers.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Hectic build-up to Field Conference

When I went to Green Pastures on Tuesday I told Tarcísio I hoped to be back on Thursday (today) but left everything sorted there in case I couldn't make it, as I have plenty of experience in the build up to our Field Conferences and know what they're like. Sure enough I didn't make it as I have been flat out with work.

Part of yesterday and today I spent preparing my sermon for Sunday in Patos after the Conference. I finished that this afternoon prior to having a little party for grandson Lucas on his 9th birthday. Such parties for our family last 15 minutes as we have no more time available. He is growing up to being a lovely lad.

Many other things have cropped up in the build up for the Conference as always happens. I have been utterly swamped out. Issues arose that needed attention prior to the Conference and I needed to check different reports in preparation too. It is funny as people contact me with things as if I am sitting twiddling my thumbs. Anyway it is all in a good cause and I am looking forward to the event which will be intense work throughout Friday and Saturday. It is such a shame that Liz won't be able to be there as it is just not viable. I will miss her by my side as we work so well together and she helps me a lot with tense and complicated issues that arise. I value everyone's prayers.

Annual Field Conference

EAB/ACEV's annual Field Conference starts tomorrow (Friday) and ends on Saturday night. The new national leadership team will be chosen, 5 new ministers given probationary status and 1 new pastor will be ordained. There will be 4 general assemblies of all our leaders in which we seek to decide everything unanimously. There will be much praise and the Word will be preached about: "Jesus - You are our Hope!". Please pray.

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Good Services

I am just off to bed after a very good service in the Patos church. I preached on the first part of Paul's 3rd Missionary journey. There was one decision for Christ. PTL!

Last night's service in the rural area of Patos was excellent. A bigger crowd gathered than expected.

I took part via Skype in an EAB Board meeting yesterday which was very good.

Liz is showing signs of improvement because I notice she can manage longer in the wheelchair than at first. PTL!

I have a meeting with the Deputy-Mayor of Patos at 9am tomorrow. He has asked to have a meeting with me. We shall see what this is about?

Now it's flat out work this week for the final touches for the Field Conference on Friday and Saturday. Please pray.

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Decisions tonight

There were two decisions for Christ in the mid-week service at the little São Vicente do Seridó EAB/ACEV church led by Sister Nenem. One other person re-dedicated his life to God. PTL!

Preparing for Field Conference

I have been working flat out yesterday and today preparing for the Field Conference which starts a week on Friday. There's so much work to do. I also did a long session of counselling and took part in another environmental meeting in defense of the highest point in our State. We have now formed a forum to try and take our battle with the authorities forward.

I also went to the dentist today and have my teeth all in order.

Philip will be flying back from Holland tomorrow and getting back to Patos on Friday (DV). 

I will be giving the Bible study this Thursday night so must prepare for this.

Monday, 9 May 2016

Mother's Day

It was Mother's Day in Brazil (and so many other places in the world yesterday) so we had a nice Sunday lunch with most of the family, though Philip is away on business in Holland for a week. In the evening we had a nice service and I preached on Psalm 37:1-11 focusing it on mothers. The service was broadcast live via facebook and many people watched in Brazil, USA and Europe. There were some difficulties with the transmission with it getting stuck about 15 times and we will continue experimenting on Sunday nights, without advertising the fact, until we can figure out how we can overcome the problems we had yesterday. We are not sure if they are resultant from our local internet provider or facebook. My nephew Ben is good at these sort of things and he is taking care of this matter. Ben married a girl from Patos and lives here. They are members of the Patos church. If you watched the service yesterday at all please let us have your feedback. It was nice for Liz to be able to watch the service at home in bed recovering from her accident.

Over the weekend I dispatched the latest EAB Nutshell Update. It was also the 9th anniversary service of the EAB/ACEV church at Tavares.

Please pray for the folk of the Plantation Project at Imaculada who lost their community leader killed in a road accident on Saturday together with her mother. 

Political uproar continues in Brazil. Please pray for the very tense situation.

My photographs on Flickr have now passed the 300,000 viewings mark.

Friday, 6 May 2016

Liz's CT Scan

Liz's orthopaedic specialist visited her this evening and spent a nice time chatting to us. He pointed out that the scan showed a small improvement in her fracture but that it was definitely looking like a 3-month recovery job which is not sensible to try and rush. However Liz, as from tomorrow, can start to sit for periods of time in a wheelchair rather than just stay in bed, and she can sit up more in bed. So it's a case of patience and caution - steady does it. He will consider starting Liz on physiotherapy in a couple of week's time or so. Thanks for your prayers everyone and please keep praying.

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Bible Study

I have just got in from the mid-week Bible study which went off very well. It was a blessed and participative service. Numbers are down mid-week with so many people ill, but it was a lovely meeting anyway.

Liz gets the result of her CT scan of her fractured pelvis tomorrow. We hold our breath and pray.

Patos Church live broadcast this Sunday!

This Sunday night at 18:30 (Patos time) and 22:30 (UK time) the Patos church service will be live streamed on Facebook by my nephew Ben Levermore at . Do not miss this wherever you are!

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Good Weekend

The special Youth service last Saturday was excellent with a wonderful word from Gleydice (Campina Grande church), lovely P&W from the group from her church mixed with a short anti-drug message from a high-ranking policeman now in the Patos church. We trust the latter will be developed more and more in the future, as drugs are a terrible problem here.

Sunday's Communion service was also excellent and this included a special moment when 9 new sign language interpreters for the deaf received their certificates having completed their one-year basic course which we run.

It was lovely to see our 8 year old granddaughter Alice doing the Bible reading on the same night.

Gwen Dyer's Funeral

Liz's Aunt Gwen (Dyer) died this week aged 95. She had been the last living person who saw off the founders of EAB, Albert & Daisy Mundy, from the Southampton Docks on August 20th, 1938. She was one of 7 of Liz's Dad's siblings born 4 years after Liz's Dad Frank Dyer. Gwen was at our Welcome Tea last August in the New Forest and at EAB's AGM Fellowship Tea in October whilst we were there in the UK. The photos below are of the Welcome Tea with Gwen to Liz's right. Please pray for Rosemary (86), to Liz's left, who obviously feels the loss of who was her last surviving sibling.

For those able to go to the funeral please note that it will be on Thursday, 26th May at 11am at the East Chapel of Southampton Crematorium, Bassett Green Road, SO16 3QB. This will be followed by a Celebration service at Lighthouse Community Church, Hardley, SO45 3NZ, at 1pm. After this there will be the traditional British refreshments and I am told that all are welcome to both services.

Monday, 2 May 2016

Liz's Aunt Gwen is with the Lord

Liz was 7 in this photo in front of her Aunty Gwen who has just passed into the presence of the Lord aged 95 at her home in Fawley, Hants, England. She wants to say how much she loved her Aunt and praises God for her long Christian life.