July 12, 2016
Dear friends and family,
We started this month with a special meeting in our church: we inaugurated our new pastor. Here in Brasil, the coming of a new pastor to a church is a big deal. There is a special service with a Pastor from another Church preaching, a laying on of hands, and an eating meeting. So we had the whole thing and accepted Walmir Quaresma as the lead Pastor of Igreja Batista Caragua. This means that I am now the second Pastor and will have less duties; this will let me come home to the States to have my radiation treatments. I can do this with one less preoccupation while doing so.
We have had a hard month of construction this month. We are still doing remodeling at the church and we are remodeling the house on the lot for our new pastor and family. Also, at our house, we have painted the outside and are waiting to do the same to the inside. Here in Brasil the homes require much more maintenance than the homes in the States, especially here in Caragua because of the closeness to the beach. This means that the water level is closer to the surface so the walls of the homes sometimes get water saturated and begin to bubble and peal. This also brings mold and that is a big problem for Barbara. Little by little, we are getting it done.
The house for the pastor and family was supposed to be done the last of June but we are still waiting for the completion, so the pastor and family are living with us—but you know how much grandparents love their grandchildren, so we are loving every minute of it. We are hoping that they will be in their home by the end of this month.
We are anxiously waiting for the group from Georgia to come in July to get the tile laid in the church. This not only will make the sanctuary look beautiful but will also make it so much easier to clean. We did get the bathrooms installed but the funds ran out so we will wait a bit more for the glass doors to cut the road noise in the sanctuary. Pray for the funds for this project.
We have our tickets purchased for our trip back to the States. We will leave here on the 25th of July. The purpose for this trip is for me to begin my radiation treatments. Pray for us on this trip. The date of the starting of the treatments will depend on the extent of my improvement since my surgery. I am scheduled for 30 treatments all done on week days. The weekends will be for rest and getting ready for the next week of treatments. I don’t know what to expect because I have never had cancer before nor have I had radiation. So pray for me and God’s grace for this next part of my life. I want to thank you all in advance for your prayers during this time. I can do all things through God who strengthens me.
Since we will be home for about 3 months I cannot invite you down but I can say “Get ready for your mission trip next year.” Caraguatatuba is a great place to serve God so come on down and visit us.
In His service,
Aj and Barbara