April 10, 2017
March Madness? I missed most of it since I was up river on a long mission trip. You won’t hold that against me, will you?
The river is very high right now, so travel is a bit easier. My bigger boat has a top and windshield, which make things much better, too. Three of our men went with me. Zico (our missions director), Rondisson (one of our chapel pastors) and Sisnando, a young man who just got to go on his very first mission trip. Our visits were to Porto Walter, Triunfo, Foz do Breu, Thaumaturgo and Tipisca in Peru. All of these locations are on the Juruá River. We travelled 625 miles. We used 95 gallons of gasoline at $6.70 per gallon. The trip cost just under $640.00. Gasoline here in town is a little cheaper, but I can now gas up at 2 of the towns upstream. That makes it possible to travel lighter, but pushes the cost up. The weather was perfect. We didn’t have any muddy river banks. There weren’t too many bloodsucking insects. Best of all though is that all the works are doing well. We had one profession of faith. I also baptized 6 at Foz do Breu on the border.
Tipisca is still a tough place, but showing signs of getting better. One of Damiana’s brothers, Bibiano and his wife Eva have been saved and are being trained by our missionary José Maia and his wife, Silvânia. Bibiano’s family is from the Kaxinauá tribe (pronounced kah-shee-now-ah). This name was given to them many years ago by the white folks. It means “bat people”. Nobody remembers why. The real name amongst the tribe is Hunikuim (pronounced hu-nee-ku-een) which means “the true people”. They see themselves as the “real” humans and then there are all the others. They see themselves as the “Jews” and all the rest of us are the “Gentiles”. Anyway, there have been 15 of the “real people” saved over the last few months. We now have a new missionary from their own people, who we brought from the Purús region to work with them. We now have regular preaching points at 3 of the 5 villages on the Breu River. The other 2 villages are now open and inviting Fredi and José Maia to preach to them, too. Fredi has worked very hard to win his own people and the results are coming in. He has also worked with the other tribes in and around Tipisca to get the gospel to them. As I walk around the small town of Tipisca I hear a little Spanish, a smattering of Portuguese, but mostly 5 other Indian languages. The town has grown to about a thousand people. However, the cultural, moral and linguistic jumble is a huge barrier to the gospel.
The work here in Cruzeiro do Sul is thriving. The construction of our rebuild and expansion is progressing slowly. The finish work on the annex is moving along in its final stages. The building continues to fill up every week. Our children’s services, both morning and evening have grown. Since we have added extra rooms in the annex, this has given more space in the main building for adults and youth. It will soon be overflowing again, by God’s grace. We will need the new balconies that are in the project very soon. The economic crisis in Brazil has really held us back, but God will supply. Several more have been saved. Others have come back to church. We even have had several new members by letter, which is rather unusual here.
My son-in-law, Pastor Dauro, has malaria again and some of my other pastors have been off on other projects. That means that I have been doing much of the preaching and teaching. I work on the buildings by day and teach at night. Long hours, but fun. My health has been great and have been feeling fine, so all is well here in our tropical paradise. Keep praying, though. Need it always.
Thanks for all of your prayers and support. God bless you as much as He has us.
Mike and Beverly Creiglow
Caixa Postal 24
Cruzeiro do Sul, Acre, Brazil 69980
mdcreig [at] hotmail.com