September 9, 2016
Dear friends and family,
Our last month at home in Caraguatatuba was a month of construction. We started by painting the house. You see, there, the homes require much more maintenance than here in the States. We finished the house and the group from Georgia arrived. It was a combined group from Centerville Baptist Church and Pinehurst Baptist Church. The Church had sent money for the new tile for the sanctuary, so we were ready and waiting when they got here. Our first task was to go shopping, and yes—the ladies were in charge of that part as they do it so well.
Then the next day, with no waiting, the tile work began. While the strong and able laid tile in the sanctuary, the rest put on their painting clothes. These tackled the high ceilings upstairs. While the painting job was just to put on the sealer coat, it was nonetheless important. The work continued for several days with little let up. But the end result is AWESOME!
This was an AWESOME week where we renewed old friendships and began new ones. We were able to do this because our friend Pastor David Grantham has assumed the leadership of the new church Pinehurst Baptist. So he led the group with two churches and everyone had a wonderful time.
We were also able to conduct a Bible School there at the Church and we had around 100 children in attendance. We had planned to do another Bible school at the Indians in Parati, but the group over tourism would not let the bus that we were using enter on the road where the Indians live. It was a great disappointment as we were not only going to do the Bible school, but the group had purchased some much needed food baskets for the Indians, and some repair on the swing set that this group had constructed in past trips. The missionary that works directly with the Indians was so upset because he told us that the Indians were in desperate need—so we made plans for him to come to Caragua to get as many baskets as his car could hold. He since has told us how much the Indians appreciated the baskets. You see, that was the only food some of them had for the month.
We got an email from the missionary just some days later with a picture showing us a tragedy that had occurred in a wind storm some days earlier. You see, the wind storm had uprooted a large tree and that tree had fallen on the swing set that the Americans had made for the children there. Well, when we get back to Brasil we will have to assess the damage and see what we all can do to set that swing set to right.
Here I want to interject something: without YOU and people dedicated to missions, none of this can happen. Groups, financial support, prayer warriors, Baptist Faith Missions and other friends make this ministry here in Caragua able to do God’s will. We want to thank everyone for your contribution however it might be. Thanks sometimes does not seem enough—you all are AWESOME!!!
This does not let you off the hook, we still need lots of help. There is still work going on on the school property and so much more. See where God might use you in Brasil and let us know what He is calling you to do. We do have an apartment for those who want to stay longer than the normal 8 to 14 days.
Barb and I got to the States on the 26th of July and began the long journey of the radiation therapy to take care of the prostate cancer. We had been told that I would have 30 radiation treatments, but when we met with the oncologist, she wanted to add 7 more treatments. She also wants me to stay in the States for some follow up after the treatments are finished. So the trip that was to be over and we were to go back to Brasil on the first of November has been prolonged. But we are in God’s hands and we know that He is taking care of every aspect of my life. I have had about one third of the treatments today 9/9/16 and God has been faithful. I have had so few side effects they are not even worth mentioning. I take treatments Monday through Friday with the weekends off. So maybe I will see you in Church. Continue to pray for great results and good tolerance.
We hope to be in Brasil for Thanksgiving so if you need someplace to go to get out of the snow then come on down! We will put some more water in the beans and treat you so many different ways that you will have to like one.
In His name,
Aj and Barb