Wednesday, June 21, 2017

June Amazon Update!

We pray that you are blessed with the below updates and we appreciate your prayers greatly.

I got the wonderful opportunity to go to Macapá to help Bob Lesher move and start working with the church, alongside Christopher and Denise Meyer.  Bob has been serving at the Altamira base for over 2 years and it was a joy to be a part of helping to mentor him.  I know that he will be a great asset to the team in Macapá.  Thankfully, the church in Macapá is in the process of planting another church in the city to which Christopher and Denise Meyer will help lead.  Christopher and Denise are back in the States for furlough and once they return they will be sent from the church to start the new church.  If you see them in the States, please encourage them and pray for them.  Below are some pictures of the church service in Macapá and a group picture at a local restaurant.   

Elba is traveling now and is in Ethiopia.  I know…did you think that she ever imagined these types of travel opportunities while growing up in a small primitive community along the Amazon River?  Praise the Lord, this is the kind of God we serve when we open up our lives and just say “yes”.  She is with Clenildo, Athila, Rick and Deanna.  They went to Ethiopia to learn first-hand about Discovery Bible Study (DBS) and Discipleship Making Movement (DMM).  In Ethiopia the DMM model has spread like wildfire and thousands upon thousands of DMM have been created.   Rick Bergen has been researching and working with DMM for the past 2 years.  The objective of this visit is to see how this is working in Ethiopia and if is it possible to replicate it in Brazil.  As I write, they are visiting leaders, peoples, and communities to get a better understanding of the program and see how it can be applied here in Brazil.  Please pray for safety, and clarity of direction for DBS / DMM in Brazil. 

Last week the national news network stated that Altamira was the most violent of all the cities in Brazil that have a population of 100,000 or more.  Of the 30 most violent cities in Brazil, four are in our state of Pará: Marabá, Marituba, and Ananindeua.  Rick and Deanna Bergen live in Marabá and are working in the midst of where a lot of these murders occur.  Personally, these reports are discouraging to hear because as a church you want to see the complete opposite of what is happening.  We want to see the Lord’s Kingdom come and transform individual lives that in turn transforms a community.  Thankfully, we are seeing individual lives being transformed because of the work that Jesus is doing in their lives.  But when will we see that be infectious and spread to the whole world?  I know the answer to these questions…it can just be discouraging.  Thankfully Jesus always reminds me “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33

The girls are doing well and we are trying our best to be without Mom.  Alyssa won another gold medal at school for good grades.  Camilly’s class only had 1 person receive this medal, she is determined to receive one next time.  The girls were invited to a birthday party and they got to do the hover board.  It was a lot of fun.  Elba, before traveling to Ethiopia, completed her degree in Pastoral Counseling.  She is so relieved to have this behind her and we are very proud of her.  I found these chips in the supermarket.  I still cannot figure out the mystery, it’s a very strange taste.  Lost in translation  J 

Please continue to pray for spiritual, physical, and emotional health for us.   Update on Alyssa and the allergic reaction.  The doctor discovered that she is allergic to the cold.  I guess there goes our visits back to the States in the winter….maybe this is a hidden blessing.J  Please pray for a complete healing. 

Much love, Steve, Elba, Camilly, and Alyssa

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