Really sorry that we weren’t able to post blogs during the recent trip to Brazil. Brady and I had a frustrating time trying to find access to the internet. This setback aside, the trip was good for us to do together. Brady definitely was exposed to the overseas mantra “Be flexible” more times than he probably wanted to hear in his entire life!
We got home last weekend wrapping up our trip with a 36 hour “all-night bus ride, visit an outlying village, followed by an all-night plane ride to the States” sleep deprived excursion. The first thing that Brady wanted to do when we landed? Get hotcakes at McDonald’s.
During this trip we saw several ministry opportunities where Bible storying could be a tremendous help in reaching the people of the favelas (slums) of Fortaleza. What I’d like to do is post several retro-blogs about different things we experienced during our two week trip.
Brazil is the fifth most populated country in the world. The Church, especially in the southern part near Sao Paulo and Rio, is experiencing tremendous growth. Eighty percent of foreign missionary work takes place in this region and thousands of Brazilians have begun working in full-time ministries. Brazil is anticipated by global missiologists to be one of the top three missionary sending countries by the middle of this century. Closer to the equator, the indigenous people of the northwestern Amazon region are protected by the government and many missionary projects – often involving medical care, education, and community improvement – have been successful in efforts to counter the negative impact of encroachment by development exploiters.
But the northeast section of the country is considered the “unreached part” of Brazil. Little missionary work occurs on the coast or interior villages. Here Europeans are buying up large sections of coastline in cities and turning them into attractive tourist areas. But these seaside condo landscapes are a façade for the slums and squatter homes that make up large portions of the cities.
This is where we were. These blogs aren’t meant to be tooting the horn of chronological Bible storying. They are meant to paint pictures of where we’re seeing God open doors to help people do ministry much the same way that Jesus did it, by sharing truth in memorable, connectable, and reproducible ways.