UCG Work in Brazil Growing
May 2, 2012
[The following report was filed by Jorge de Campos, senior pastor for the United Church of God’s Portuguese-speaking regions. Mr. de Campos visited Brazil during the Days of Unleavened Bread.]
The trip to Maloca de Moscow
On April 10 I left the United States to visit the brethren in Brazil, and to conduct three Kingdom of God Bible Seminars and fulfill a number of visit requests. God blessed the trip with spiritual growth of members, safety and health. Thanks are to be given to God for His blessing on this visit.
After flying from Dallas, Giovane Macedo, a member in Brazil, joined me in Boa Vista, Brazil, to visit the indigenous brethren in the Wapixana village of Maloca de Moscow. Giovane and I admired the lovely building which they built with Good Works funds for their services. This building was inaugurated on Passover night, April 5, 2012.
We also admired the lovely new vegetable garden which they planted at my request for their benefit, with “seed” funds donated by brethren. We delivered some toys, second hand clothing and bags of rice for their sustenance. In addition I carried from the U.S. a 32” flat screen TV and a DVD player for them to play our video sermons in Portuguese. All this arrived there in perfect condition and was donated by various brethren. The video sermons will be placed on DVD’s for them, as well as placed on the Web for other Portuguese members, either in Portugal and/or Brazil, who have access to the Internet.
On Friday, the last day of Unleavened Bread, we had two services and the attendance was 34 people for both services. On the following Sabbath, April 14, we had services in the morning with 32 brethren present and 8 visitors. In the afternoon we conducted the first series of the Kingdom of God Bible Seminars, with a total attendance of 42, of which 16 were visitors.
On Sunday afternoon we conducted a wedding in the new church hall they built. However, before the wedding I conducted a Bible study about the marriage vow. I addressed God’s laws regarding marriage and the need to comply with the laws of the country, that is, to legalize the marriages in Brazil.
Subsequent to the Bible study, while the ladies prepared for the wedding, we did a leadership training session reviewing previous instructions about preparing sermonettes and additional instructions about how to preach the Word of God effectively, lessons on song leading and general procedures regarding services, how to handle announcements in church, and the festival assistance program for them.
After the wedding we discussed ways that we could proceed to further assist the local brethren.
Visit to São Paulo
Giovane and I left Sunday evening to Boa Vista to catch a 2:30 a.m. flight early Monday morning to Brasília and then to São Paulo. Giovane at this juncture left to go to his home in Montes Claros and I proceeded to São Paulo. The municipality of São Paulo has well over 11 million people and the greater São Paulo region has some 19 million people. After renting a car, I finally arrived that afternoon at the residence of a prospective member family, the Pellegrinos.
That same Monday evening I conducted a Kingdom of God Bible Seminar with nine people attending. One of the new people that attended the Seminar was a gentleman of 83 years of age who used to attend God’s Church until 1995, and has remained faithful for all these years. This seminar in São Paulo ended up being a seminar with many questions and we left the venue at about midnight.
On Wednesday I drove 5 hours to Ribeirão Preto to visit a prospective member. This young man showed a lot of interest in the Church and we are in contact over the Internet. On Thursday, I visited a lady in an outlining suburb of São Paulo with many biblical questions and very desirous to worship God with us. In the same evening we visited a man in downtown São Paulo, who also demonstrated interest to join United.
As we have had no presence in São Paulo before, we are breaking new ground thanks to God opening the minds of new people who are very interested in the truth. We need to pray that God protects these new ones from Satan’s deception and brings them along to the truth. We now have an urgent need to set up a more visible ministry via video sermons and Internet contact to help these people along. We may even have to have a new Feast of Tabernacles site to teach these new prospective members about God’s Way. Let’s pray for God to bless this effort in the industrial hub of Brazil.
Change to the Feast Site in Brazil
On Friday I went to Montes Claros for the Sabbath to visit with the Macedo family, conduct a third Bible Seminar and wrap up the Brazilian trip. During this leg of the trip I learnt from the brethren in Maloca de Moscow about their decision that two of the four heads of family decided not to leave the village to attend the Feast in Boa Vista.
So that we would keep them together as a family, and upon prayer and council with the home office, we decided to move the Feast site in the North of Brazil, from the town of Boa Vista, back to the village of Maloca, and to conduct it in their new hall. This in fact will be a lot more economical and practical for the local brethren and they have all the equipment necessary to view video sermons in the village.
Regrettably we have to mention to those who intended to travel to Boa Vista from overseas to the Feast, that this is no longer possible—as Maloca de Moscow does not have the facilities for overseas guests. It could accommodate one or two people that would want to camp and rough it, but we could not accommodate a number of visitors. In the meantime we will also investigate other options near São Paulo as God is calling new people in that region and they need instruction about God’s Way, and the Feast is one of the ideal opportunities which God created for that purpose.
After the visit to Montes Claros I started my trip back early Sunday morning, April 22. I thank God once again for the doors that He is opening and for the health that he personally granted to me during this trip. Please continue praying that God may bless His Work in the Portuguese language and pray for these scattered brethren.
For your information, during this trip, we completed the printing of a new booklet in Portuguese making now 18 booklets that we have available in Portuguese. For literature and sermons in Portuguese please visit our members website at membros.revistaboanova.org.
Jorge de Campos—Senior Pastor, Portuguese-speaking Areas