[To see the PDF version of this letter, click here]
We have been back in Portugal for 30 days now. As you know, we are going through major adjustments in our ministry. This was not a case of “picking up where we left off”. The church I pastored for the last 10 years has a new pastor. We are about to see a new pastor ordained (pray for Bro. Tito getting ordained on the 24th) and he will be taking care of most of the work of our one year old new church plant. In September, we will be put in charge of my in-laws’ ministries as they leave for an 8 month furlough in the US.
What has happened in the last 30 days? A lot! The new pastor of the church in Albufeira ended up having to go to Brazil as his brother there was in critical condition. So, our first Sunday back in the country started a series of five Sundays taking care of the church we have just left while Bro. Lenildo visits his family in Brazil. Thank you for praying for Max. He recovered from the coma and is back at home. God is good!
We have also decided to help Bro. Tito have a few weeks off with his family. I have been preaching in both churches (3 hours apart). We have been doing an overview of the book of James for Sunday School. This has been a blessing and it is exciting to see the people come back every week and report on how they have been applying what we have been learning.
This last month we also had our youth camp. I took a few young people from Albufeira. What a great camp it was! The Lord worked from day one and there were very important decisions made. We are praying that we get to see some of these young people in full-time Christian ministry in Portugal. A young man asked about starting Bible Institute courses. This is tremendous! As you know, we are praying about seeing many churches started in our lifetime. We can’t exactly call the closest Bible College for pastoral candidates. We pray that the camp will be used to challenge a whole generation in Portugal for full-time Christian ministry. During camp, I had the chance to personally lead two young men as they prayed to receive Jesus as their personal Saviour. What a privilege! God is not done with Portugal!
I have also been trying to spend as much time as possible with my in-laws before they leave. Bro. Lenildo comes back on August 5th, so this will help.
The funny thing is that it is like deputation is not over! I am still driving all the time and still living out of the same suitcase. Aura has been busy, preparing SS materials and a Bible study she will soon start with the ladies. Thank you so much for praying for us.