Major Adjustments in the Last Year

Charlene Wacaser has served the Lord with her husband Bobby as a church planter in Curitiba, Parana, Brazil, since
1985.

April 17, 2021

Hello, dear friends,

It has been just a little over a year now that our life routines were drastically changed. With several lockdowns and worship services online only, I had to make some major adjustments. Added to this, our region went through a yearlong drought and water was rationed. The supply was cut off every thirty-six hours for thirty-six hours and I had to schedule my cleaning routine such as washing dishes, laundry and baths.

Our outreach ministries were also affected. We had to discontinue our English classes and suspend our children’s Bible classes. What I had to do was to learn how to teach and counsel through the Internet. That isn’t really how I prefer to communicate with others, but I had to adjust to the new restrictions.

Our fortieth wedding anniversary came around during this period and we had planned to take a small special vacation, but because of travel restrictions we had to stay home and be creative. It actually turned out pretty nice. Bobby helped me prepare a very nice romantic dinner and we thoroughly enjoyed our special day together.

Our grandson, Jayce, is now three years old and we miss him greatly. We thank God for the technology that allows us to interact with him and our children, even though we can’t be with them as often as we’d like. At least he knows us and recognizes us by sight and the sound of our voice.

My main prayer request is that I will stay encouraged in and through these new challenges. I need the Lord’s wisdom to know how to be effective for kingdom work with a whole new set of circumstances. I am very grateful to you who pray for us and support us faithfully.

In Christ’s love,
Charlene Wacaser

Contact Info:
Bobby & Charlene Wacaser
Rua Laudelino Ferreira Lopes, 279
Sobrado 1, Novo Mundo
81050-310 Curitiba, PR. Brasil
Phone: 55-41-99899-2333
bobbymichael_1@hotmail.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280
Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online




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Virtual Seminary Classes Scheduled Through Second Wave of COVID

The Hensleys have served the Lord in Brazil, South America since 1996. They have worked with orphanages, started mission points, established churches, and are presently conducting a seminary to train Brazilian pastors.

April 13, 2021

Dear friends and family,

I am sitting here thinking how I sound like a broken record. We have moved our tickets from tomorrow to June because of the intensity of the COVID-19 in São Paulo. This is the city where our Seminary classes are scheduled in April.

We were supposed to travel on the 14th before the scheduled classes so that we could visit with the granddaughters and Mary and Walmir. Barb and I are really miss our grandbabies.

All for April is not lost as we are very committed to providing ministry training through our Seminary classes. The classes for April 2021 in São Paulo will be held virtually via zoom.

As this second wave of COVID has been very severe, we ask all to pray for our Brazilian Pastors and Seminary students. In São Paulo where the classes are being held, Templo Batista de Indianapolis where pastor Marcos is the main pastor, both he and his wife have COVID. Pastor Marcus is at home taking medicine but his wife is in the hospital on a ventilator. At this time, they both are showing improvement. Today they are beginning to wean her of the machine.

Brazil as a country seems to be having a problem with their COVID vaccines. Maybe it is because of the social medicine that they have in that country. This makes it so evident how blessed we are as Americans to have the easy access to the medication that we need when we need it. All I can think of is that some here want that kind of socialized medicine here. Forgive me for getting a little political but I have lived it and there is no upside to it.

As we are stuck here in the States, we have been busy contacting our students to keep them informed of the changing of the schedule and how they can participate on-line. But we sometimes forget that the pastors and other students do not have all the advantages that we have so it has been hard to get some of them access to a zoom class. But we are diligently working from here to see if we can make that happen. Each of them are anxious about continuing their studies, so keep them in your prayers as you keep Brazil also in your prayers.

We want to thank each and every one of you who stand beside us as the work in Brazil goes on even if it is long distance. None of this work could continue without the strong prayer warriors and the contributions to BFM. We are looking forward to face-to-face training but until that can happen we will continue the way we are with telephoning and zoom. Just know that we never forget that our Lord and Savior is in complete control and He is doing an AWESOME job.

In His service,
Aj and Barb

CONTACT INFO

AJ & Barbara Hensley
592 Emery Court
Lexington, KY 40505
AJ: 859-539-2302 | Barbara: 859-539-1424
ajcaragua@gmail.com

Click here to give online.




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Following God’s Will


The Hensleys have served the Lord in Brazil, South America since 1996. They have worked with orphanages, started mission points, established churches, and are presently conducting a seminary to train Brazilian pastors.

April 16, 2021

Friends and family,

It is getting close to the time to recognize the mothers and the women who have followed God’s will in following their husbands to the mission field. For those of you who know me, you know that I was a reluctant follower. And for those of you who are getting to know me, it was not that I did not want to follow God’s will, I just wanted to rearrange His will. You see, we were traveling to the mission field every year carrying things that the missionaries needed and also taking people to introduce them to mission works. This is what I was trying to tell God and my husband that this was His will for our lives. But as you know, after four years I came to the realization that there was much more to do for Him.

So, we spent 21 years in Brasil and I loved every minute of it. Then AJ got cancer and we had to come back to the States for his treatments, and the decision was made that the treatment would be a long and arduous one, and we needed to stay here, so we helped the church call a new pastor and we moved home to Kentucky.

Now as I told you, the moving to Brasil was a difficult decision—the moving back to the States was a million times harder. You see, we had made Brasil our home and were planning to live there until God called us home to our heavenly home. This time we had decided God’s will for our lives without consulting Him. He had other plans for our future and we are following them now.

God had prepared a job we could do for Him and stay in the States. AJ, with the help of others, had started a Seminary in our town of Caragua and God expanded the reach of this Seminary farther than we could have ever imagined. We are now in five states and seven cities and almost four hundred students enrolled. We travel to Brasil four times per year and teach for two weeks the intensified version. Then we leave the students with lots of homework. When we come back to Brasil, we repeat this again in another city. You see, we are a traveling Seminary because the students do not have the resources to travel to us.

Now you ask what do I do during this time in Brasil? Glad you asked—I get to visit the church we left in the hands of our son-in-law and daughter. And, OH YES, my granddaughters.

So now let me tell you about the last year and a half—I have packed our suitcases four times and unpacked them once. You see, we have not been able to travel because of the virus. I began to get smarter each time, so I just left them packed and in the middle of the floor waiting for the GO signal. We have had four tickets to travel to Brasil and lost the first tickets, but I also got smarter with each passing time and began paying for the insurance. My grandbabies have outgrown over half of the clothes that were in the first suitcases. The chocolate has gotten that white color on it and—oh well—you can imagine the rest.

We were all set for the April trip, but we had not told the grands because they have been disappointed enough. It was good that we did not tell them because you see Brasil got its second wave and we had to cancel again.

The seclusion, the fear and all that has gone with this COVID-19 cannot stop our God! He is on the throne and He is in charge so we will wait on Him and His infinite wisdom.

For He knows the plans He has for us, plans to prosper and not for evil to give us a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11

In His service,
Barbara Hensley

CONTACT INFO

AJ & Barbara Hensley
592 Emery Court
Lexington, KY 40505
AJ: 859-539-2302 | Barbara: 859-539-1424
ajcaragua@gmail.com

Click here to give online.


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Walking the Path God Has Set for Us

 

 

Judy Hatcher has been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France with her husband John since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

April 14, 2021

Dear Friends,

How thankful I am to be given the opportunity to share a bit of my heart today. April is a special month for me…my birthday month! I feel blessed to have a Spring birthday because the whole creation emerges after a cold, hard winter to be reborn with color, new life, beauty!

I’m also reminded of my new birth in Christ. As an innocent ten year-old, I had no idea of the wonderful life that was beginning. I also had no idea of the rocks or curves that would be in my road. I did know, however, that the One who gave His life for me would hold my hand, guide me in the dark, share my joys, never leave me and that His ways were above my ways and better than my ways.

Would I have predicted that the year 2020 would hold pandemic (as I child I didn’t even know the word!), unexpected blessings, death, new opportunities, frustration? Not a clue! But I knew the Savior and He has been more than enough! Being locked down physically did not cut me off from my Lord…rather gave me opportunity to focus more on Him. I have had the privilege of standing in awe of my Father as He has rained down unexpected blessing after blessing. He has placed people in our path to help us each step of our way. I have felt His comfort and peace as I watched my sister pass from this old earth to glory. In rather mundane ways, God has given us opportunities to share Him with people that we would have never met if it weren’t for coronavirus. But oh, the frustration! We desire to go home and yet it seems as we pass each step the next sign reads, “two more weeks!” So, once again, I must rest on His chest and realize that, just as in the past, He knows what He is doing! It’s my place to wait, to love, to walk with Him and share His love with those He puts in our path.

So, together, let’s walk the path He has set for us with joy, sharing His love with those who we encounter each step of the way.

Yours because of Him,
Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Reaching More People in Ubim

Kathy Barros has served the Lord in Brazil her whole life. Daughter of missionaries John & Alta Hatcher, she married Odali Barros and they served the Lord in Sao Paulo, Brazil together from 1987-2013. In late 2013, they transitioned to Manaus in Northern Brazil to start sharing the Gospel and planting churches in villages along the river.

Dear brothers and sisters,

Hope all of you are doing well through these different times in our lives. It’s hard to believe that a year has passed so fast. We are doing well, thank God! Things in our area have gone up and down. At the moment, the virus is slowing down, but not controlled. Through these times what calls my attention is the fact that as human beings, so many times we get so busy with our everyday lives and we think we have everything under control. Then all of a sudden, life changes. Something invisible to human eye changes the whole world. In my life what came to my mind was a verse we all know but so many times it stays in the back of our mind.

Mark 13

32 But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.

33 Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.

34 For the Son of Man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.

35 Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning:

36 Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping.

37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.

These verses are what I use in my life to keep me focused on what God wants for me to do. What my purpose on earth is! Sharing God’s message is so wonderful and so powerful. 

The ministry that I work at is in a small village on the edge of the river and now a road goes through there. When I was a child living in this area the only way to get to these places was by boat. Today we are blessed and can reach more people faster. The village of Ubim has many young people. Also part of it is an Indian tribe. This is a real blessing. You can’t just go to the tribes. You would have to have special permission. God was so wonderful that He sent a mother by there one day and she asked what that place was. I told her it was a kids club from the Baptist church. Then she asked if the kids from the tribe could come. I said sure that would be wonderful. They have not stopped coming since. Actually, more and more of them are coming—from 2 year olds to teenagers! Praise the Lord! The average attendance we have is 55 kids. I start this work at 3:30 and it goes to 8:00 pm. We had to split the time frame into 3 groups because of their ages. That way we can better work with each age group. Two years ago I had t-shirts made for them and many of you gave for this to be possible. I would like to make new ones. If you would like to help, make your donation to “Ubim T-shirt”. May God bless each of you. We are planning on working with the mothers also. Things got a little slowed down because of the virus problem but things are starting to get back in the swing.

(An example of the t-shirts.)
You can give online!
Just designate Ubim Tshirts in the memo field.

I want to thank each one of you for your prayers and support! We could not do what we do without your partnership!!

Love in Christ,
Kathy Barros

Contact Info:
Odali & Kathy Barros
Iranduba, Amazonas
Brasil, SA
odali_kathy@hotmail.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Homeschooling & Raising Chloe

The Tates have served the Lord in Kitale, Kenya since January 2008. Their main ministry is church planting.

April 9, 2021

Beloved Brothers and Sisters,

I can’t believe another year has come and gone…it reminds me of the phrase in the Bible, “…and it came to pass….” Just like many other euphemisms — “what goes up must come down,” and  “what goes around comes around”— it is also true that all things which come will also pass. Sometimes we feel stuck in current circumstances, but that’s only our limited perspective. As the Alpha and Omega, God sees the beginning from the end. Not only do all things have a set time, they have set purposes as well.

Milimani Christian Homeschool Community’s time has passed. This was both a relief and something I grieved deeply. People here in Kenya who know me well know that I poured 150% of myself into MCHC. I loved (and still love) the children and the teachers deeply, and I found great joy in helping all of them academically and spiritually. I loved discipling the teachers, not only in teacher training and opening their hearts and minds to children with learning challenges and differences, but also in their walk with the Lord. I loved talking about and demonstrating the love of Jesus to children from different walks of life – children from Christian homes, nominal Christian homes, and even a Hindu home. I loved watching children who were bitter bullies blossom into caring friends. I loved watching our neuro-diverse children find joy and confidence in a learning environment that treasured them and helped them find their strengths without belittling their challenges. I loved watching children learn to accept one another’s differences while finding their commonalities, even among different ethnic backgrounds. I can’t begin to tell you what a joy it was. I don’t understand why it had to end the way it did; I can only say that it was a good and beautiful thing, and I trust God will continue to use that time in the lives of the people who were touched by it.

Having said that, it seems obvious that in the passing of MCHC, God had another great adventure planned…homeschooling and raising Chloe. Homeschooling and raising children are not new to me. Doing it for Chloe, however, is unlike anything we’ve ever done. Not only are we parenting and working with her academics, I find myself in the position of being her ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis) therapist, her OT (Occupational Therapist), her emotional co-regulator (teaching her to regulate her own emotions by doing it physically with her), her advocate (and our own), and even a researcher to understand her and what she needs. This is more daunting than MCHC ever was, but everything I learned at MCHC, I am now applying at home. In fact, without my experience at MCHC, I would be quite ill-equipped. This is beautiful to me. You see, God is never doing only one thing at a time in any one circumstance. One of the things He was using MCHC for in my own life was training me to teach my own very special needs child. All this has pushed Roger and me beyond the limits of anything we feel capable of doing…or surviving. We’re learning more about ourselves and our own hearts than we want to know, but even that is beautiful to me (usually…).

We can often feel stuck in our challenges, but from time-to-time God reminds me to step back and see all the struggles that have come…and have now passed. There is so much hope and growth. Chloe’s academics have really taken-off in her homeschooling environment. A friend of mine from the US with a Master’s degree in Special Education is here and has done some evaluations with Chloe. She’s told me that Chloe is actually quite intellectually gifted. She loves to read, her math facts are like muscle memory (when she’s relaxed and can access them), she has an amazing memory both verbally and visually, and she loves music and cooking. In fact, she just loves learning and has a super cute sense of fun and humor to boot. I am so thankful to have her in an environment that won’t squash that.

She does have challenges though, and I would ask you to pray for us as we research and find help for her in these areas. Autism often comes with other issues…a lack of ability to regulate her emotions (thus the scars up and down my arms), difficulty with social communication despite an extensive vocabulary, and severe anxiety due to sensory processing disorder and nervous system overload creating flight or fight reactions (usually fight…). In Chloe’s case, her neuro-developmental psychologist has told us she also has attachment insecurities and food insecurities (from babyhood before she came to us), as well as dysgraphia, mild dyslexia, and dyspraxia. This a condition in which the communication between Chloe’s brain and her muscles gets mixed up causing fine and gross motor skill difficulties. Basically, her muscles don’t know how to do what her brain tells them to do. This also affects her speech.

I really appreciate your love and prayers for our family. Please continue to pray for our kids in the US as well:  Emily and Igor, Amy, and Josiah. It’s hard to be “stuck” in Kenya with no hope of being able to see them anytime in the near future. We miss them terribly, and though we love the gift of being able to have video calls with them once a week, it’s just not the same as a hug.

In Christ,
Julie Tate

CONTACT INFO

Roger & Julie Tate
P.O. Box 96
Kitale, Kenya 30200
rojuta@gmail.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Faithfulness in Available Opportunities

Bobby and Charlene Wacaser have served the Lord as church planters in Curitiba, Parana, Brazil, since 1985.

In my last correspondence, I mentioned that there was a possibility that our governing authorities might extend the COVID lockdown for a longer period and that is what happened. In fact, we had to hold all the worship services during the month of March by live video rather than in person. There is an upside to this in that we are all getting more adept at using technology and social networking to further the cause of Christ. I know that I, myself, have gotten more adept at speaking to a camera with no one present, except Charlene, and I had never done that before. We have also seen a huge increase in the number of viewers of our services than what we were having in person. We improved the equipment we were using and plan to continue to minister with it even after returning to live services next week.

All of our outreach team members have been actively seeking opportunities to share the gospel in ways that differ from their usual public school presentations. The number of people that they have been able to reach was greatly reduced, but the Lord knows that and we know that what counts is faithfulness in the opportunities available. Nonetheless, they all are getting antsy to get back out on the highways and into the many towns where there are no evangelical churches. The Lord willing, the tight COVID restrictions will be lifted very soon and public presentations will be possible.

I ask that you remember us in your prayers, both for wisdom to know how to minister in these strange new times and that we’ll have increased opportunities to share the gospel in the coming weeks.

We are extremely grateful to you who have been faithful to pray for and support us in our labors.

In Christ’s love,
Bobby and Charlene Wacaser

Contact Info:
Bobby & Charlene Wacaser
Rua Laudelino Ferreira Lopes, 279
Sobrado 1, Novo Mundo
81050-310 Curitiba, PR. Brasil
Phone: 55-41-99899-2333
bobbymichael_1@hotmail.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280
Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online


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Traveling Begins

Nathan and Carrie Radford serve the Lord in Kitale, Kenya. Their main ministries include indigenous church planting, a prison ministry, and a hospital ministry for mothers with premature babies.

Dear praying friends,
 
We hope this finds you all doing well. It has been a busy past few weeks, as I (Nathan) have been revising the missions presentation, scheduling churches, traveling during the pandemic, etc. This has definitely been the most abnormal of any of previous furloughs, given the corona pandemic, but God has been faithful and provided for us even during these challenging times. All of us need to trust the Lord like we never have before, as this past year had so many challenges. I like the statement “I don’t know what the future holds, but I know Who holds the future.” Psalm 62:8 says “Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah.” Trust at all times, good and bad. God is so faithful. 
 

Please pray for Kenya, as they have increased the restrictions due to coronavirus. From what we understand, international flights are still allowed in the country, but you must produce a negative covid test within 96 hours of arrival in the country. Also, there are five counties around Nairobi that have very tight restrictions. There are no public gatherings of any kind, you cannot leave those counties, etc. This is very similar to how it was last year. It seemed like the cases continued to climb last year and eventually all flights were cancelled.

These restrictions are in place indefinitely, and it could go on for months. Kenya has seen a 22% increase in cases over the past few weeks, so it is concerning. It can also affect government paperwork, as our work permit is in process, so please pray that our permit will be granted on time with no delays or setbacks. Of course, this is all in God’s plan and timing, and we trust Him with it all. I think of Psalm 46:1, which says “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” I find myself returning to the book of Psalms for strength and comfort during these challenging times. What a treasure the Word of God is.

I (Nathan) am in the process of contacting churches and beginning to share, preach, and present the ministries in Kitale, so if you are interested in a visit, please contact me at naterad@yahoo.com and I will see what can be worked out. Of course with all the corona cases and restrictions in the
United States, it is challenging, but I will do my best.

Please pray for my wife and our daughters. I am thankful for a wonderful wife who loves the Lord, desires to serve Him, and serves sacrificially with me in Kenya. Please pray for her and the challenges of homeschooling. She has done very well and does not give herself enough credit, in my opinion. She is an excellent teacher and a real servant. God has truly blessed me with her.

That is about it for now. Of course we remember each of you in your respective areas and all the challenges you must be facing as well. You are in our thoughts and prayers. Let’s pray and uplift each other during these challenging times. We appreciate each of you who pray for us, sacrificially give, or encourage us in any way. You are all such a blessing.

Until next month,
Nathan and Carrie Radford
 

Contact Info:
Nathan and Carrie Radford
1126 Smith Street
Milton, WV 25541
naterad@yahoo.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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