News & Reports – June 2021

The Online Edition of the June 2021 BFM News & Reports is available at the link below. Read how God is working through the lives of our faithful missionaries and continue to pray for them.
*Remember you can click on any headline to view the post/story on our website.


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Visiting Churches on Furlough

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,

Another month has come and gone, and we are now officially halfway through the year with the summer months coming ahead. It is hard to believe we are already into the summer months, and we love seeing the changing seasons and getting to experience them while we are on furlough. Each of you are such a blessing and we appreciate your interest in the ministry in Kitale, Kenya.

I (Nathan) have been busy traveling, scheduling, reporting on the mission work in Kenya, and preaching the Word of God. It has been a blessing to see each of you and I am genuinely thankful to each opportunity with the challenges of coronavirus. We know different parts of the country have been affected in different ways, and our prayer is that things will be back to normal all over America. Prayer makes a big difference. I love the quote “prayer changes things.” I think of Colossians 4:2, which says “Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;” and also Psalm 145:18, which says “The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.” May we call upon the Lord daily, trusting in His strength for the challenges of life.

My wife and our daughters are staying busy with homeschooling. My wife has a degree in education, and does a great job preparing and teaching our daughters. Homeschooling has been a great experience for her and our daughters.

Our understanding is that Kenya has reopened now from the previous restrictions of coronavirus. There are still cases in various parts of the country, but at least you can fly into the country now and not be restricted in any way. As I stated before, Nairobi and five other counties were on lockdown but those restrictions are now lifted. For this we are thankful. Please pray that the cases would continue to decline so that everything would get back to normalcy soon. That is our prayer for America as well.

We understand that there is a new supermarket coming into Kitale that stores many of the items that we like. We are excited about this and are hopeful that it will be opening soon. This is a big blessing for my wife and makes her weekly grocery shopping much easier, as she had to go to several different stores last term. What a blessing this is.

Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we continue in our time of furlough. We are thinking of you all as well and appreciate each of you so much. May we continue to trust the Lord day by day, month by month, year by year, following His guidance. I will leave you with the famous verses of Proverbs 3:5-6 which say, “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” Amen. May this be the desire of our lives.

Until next month,
Nathan and Carrie

Contact Info:
Nathan and Carrie Radford
naterad[at]yahoo.com
Furlough Address
1126 Smith Street
Milton, WV 25541

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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A Soldier Called Home

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

May 28, 2021  

Dear Friends,  

In a letter I wrote a couple of months ago I told about a dear couple, Emmanuel and Maria, who had retired from their secular jobs to engage in fulltime evangelism. Both, they and their grown children all contracted COVID in March and were treated with medications to recover. All six of them recovered from COVID, but sadly, Emmanuel suffered heart failure due to pre-existing conditions and the Lord saw fit to take him on to heaven. His family and our church family are very sad that he is no longer with us, but we do rejoice that Emmanuel has finished his race and is enjoying the presence of our Savior. Even while he was in the hospital he was a soldier for the Lord. Four people who were either roommates or visitors came to know Christ through his testimony and that of his family as they shared their faith through the gospel.  

Nearly a year ago, a teenage girl who attended our services turned to Christ and was baptized. Her parents are divorced and she divides her time, living with both parents for a couple of weeks at a time. Both of her parents have been Spiritists (demon worshippers) all of her life. When she first wanted to be baptized, her father wouldn’t allow it. She respected her father’s will and waited to be baptized until he gave his permission. Her changed behavior after her conversion was so stark that her father was convicted of his own need for forgiveness and just last week we baptized him after his surrender to Christ! It is amazing to see how joyful this man has become. We are now praying for the girl’s mother to come to Christ also.  

Charlene and I want to thank you who pray for us faithfully. We see constantly evidence of God’s blessings upon our health and fruit in our ministries and we are grateful to you who pray and give that we may continue serving here in Curitiba, Brazil.  

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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Returning to Normal Amidst Flooding

Odali and Kathy Barros 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,

We pray and hope that all of you are doing well. We thank God for each of you for your prayers and support. Our ministry is greatly blessed through your encouragement.

Things here are getting back to normal but at this moment they are giving alerts of new cases of the virus, so we do our ministry being careful and taking the care necessary. 

One problem that we are having in some places is flooding. The Amazon and the Negro River have risen higher than it has for over 50 years. The community of Cacao where we have a church, the water has reached part of the building. At the village of Ubim, the water has not reached the church, but to get to the church we have to walk over a temporary bridge made to get into the village. The water still is coming up. Many places are really flooded.

Kathy wants to thank those who gave donations for the t-shirts for the kids of Ubim. The t-shirts are ready. The kids will be happy to get new ones.

The ministry at the mother church, Pedras Vivas Baptist church is back to normal. We have started back the music classes on Sunday morning. We plan on starting back the Friday night services in homes soon. Kathy and I are doing visitation to see people that might want services in their homes. One thing that we did in our church was to sing only songs from the hymnal song book. Seems like everyone has enjoyed the month. We also mentioned about some of the authors.

I have been working this month on encouraging the church and showing them the mission God gave each of us: to tell people about God’s love and what He did for man to be saved. Telling them the importance of evangelism. It is easy to get caught up in our busy life and forget to tell others about God’s Love.

May God bless each of you! 

Love in Christ our Savior,

Odali and Kathy

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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Training Leadership, Headed to the States

Jud and Raquel Hatcher are third generation missionaries serving the Lord in São Paulo, Brazil. They are part of the “SeedFactory” church planting initiative, which is a movement to plant churches in all 26 Brazilian capitals. Since 2006, 43 churches have been started in 5 states.

May 22, 2021

Dear friends,

In this month’s letter: Overcoming leadership training challenges, a Northeastern Brazil celebration visit in João Pessoa, “to COVID or not to COVID” and our plans to be in the US.  Thanks for reading.

Leadership Training

This month we had an intense one-week online leadership training with 23 people from three different cities. In his book J. Oswald Sanders ‘Spiritual Leadership’ said “leadership is influence”. Our in depth discussions dealt with the needed influence for maximum mobilization and teamwork for the Gospel. The pandemic forced us to use a new format for meetings and training. There is a benefit to online training though. As people familiarize themselves with this format, new leaders from around the country can participate in these seminars and bring a broader base of experiences into the conversation. The live feed provides real time interaction between people that otherwise would not be in the same room due to the geographical distance. It was a great success.

Church in João Pessoa

Pastor Helder and I flew 3.5 hours from São Paulo to encourage the church, the pastor and the leadership in João Pessoa. In 2003, my father (Paul Hatcher) and I visited and surveyed 5 cities in Northeast Brazil. As a result, a new church planting project began to reach Brazil´s Northeastern region. Families were equipped, teams were selected and sent from Manaus. João Pessoa was one of the cities that received a church planting team. It’s the capital city on the coast of Paraiba state, and is home to beautiful people. Pastor Mizael and Jaqueline (his wife) were part of the original three families that moved from Manaus as part of the project. This church was started 15 years ago and Mizael and Jaqueline have faithfully served with their family. They developed leaders and influenced the region with the Gospel. We met with their leadership team and presented Pastor Mizael and Jaqueline with a “Here Am I” award during Sunday’s worship meeting in honor of their faithful service to the Lord to reach people with the Gospel.  

Family Happenings

These last few weeks we´ve celebrated Sarah’s (16th) and Benjamin´s (13th) birthdays. It is hard to do much celebrating in the middle of a lockdown, but the Lord is faithful in caring for us and giving us great reason to rejoice.

Raquel, Benjamin and I tested positive with COVID-19. Our family remained in home lockdown for three weeks until full recovery. Benjamin was mostly asymptomatic, as he only had a congested nose for 3 nights. Raquel and I had fevers, inflammation of the joints and organs, coughing, and deep exhaustion. The Lord took care of us during this time through family and friends. We are now COVID free.  

Stateside Assignment

We travel to the States on June 17 to stay for a one-year Stateside assignment / furlough. We plan to visit supporting churches, friends and family during this time. We were originally scheduled to be in the States last year, but the pandemic lockdown hindered us from making it. We are grateful to our supporting churches, friends and to the BFM board of directors in assisting us during this process. We will begin in Orlando, FL by visiting my parents for a few weeks. We would love to schedule a time with you and/or your church. Let’s connect! Shoot me an email so that we can plan the details to be with you.

Grateful always,
Judson and Raquel Hatcher

Contact Info:
Jud & Raquel Hatcher
São Paulo, Brazil
judsonhatcher@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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Back in France!

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We are back in France! A week ago, we stepped off the plane in France. What a delight to walk out of the baggage claim area to find Philip and three of our granddaughters waiting for us. Amanda and Camille were at our house putting finishing touches on cleaning and preparing lunch. We are thrilled to be back to the place that God led us to 22 years ago.

Though there are still many restrictions here because of the Covid virus, within a couple of days we encountered many of our neighbors. However, Sunday crowned our joy as we sang in person with the members of our congregation. Though we have been meeting online with the church at Tournefeuille, we could not hear each other singing. Sunday was a very small foretaste of heaven where numberless multitudes will be praising the Lord together.

Yesterday, we had lunch with the Veuillet family from our church. Jean-Luc is one of our teaching leaders. We had an excellent meal and time of fellowship together. This family is a great blessing and encouragement to us as musicians, teachers and committed believers. They just bought a house that is further from our meeting place by about 20 minutes on the road. However, this a small city that desperately needs a gospel witness. I am hoping that this could be the beginning of a church in that community.

We just learned that the house in which we live and hold our church meetings is going to be sold. The rental agent is to meet with us in a couple of weeks to discuss alternatives. Please, pray for us that God will direct our hearts in this matter. Or, if you would like to donate $500,000.00, we can just purchase the house. In case you are wondering, it is not a mansion. You can call Darrell Messer or Randy Jones who have been here for details.

We thank God for each of you and your faithful participation in what God is doing here.

May the Lord bless each of you,
John and 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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Dedicated Students in Seminary Classes

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.

Dear friends and family,

What an AWESOME God we serve! I have so much to tell about the problems and blessings and answered prayers it is almost impossible to tell it all in a short letter. But here goes—in April we have completed two virtual Seminary classes. There were two different locations participating: São Paulo and Campins. These cities joined together to take these classes. Normally in São Paulo we have 32 students and in Campins we have 14 students. The virtual classes for April we had 29 students combined. This is an AWESOME blessing considering the problems with COVID—lack of work and lockdowns going on there in Brasil.

We all know that when God is at work the devil will pop up his ugly head when and where he can. To begin with, one of our primary Brasilian leaders and supporters, Pastor Marco de Silva and his wife both contracted COVID. His symptoms were milder than hers, so she has been hospitalized and has been intubated. So please pray for them (more on their conditions after the classes). He, however, took the classes. How AWESOME is that type of dedication.

Another student was still in the hospital yet he took the classes from his hospital bed. Many others have similar stories showing their determination to improve their Pastoral leadership. They are simply amazing, not only overcoming COVID problems, but many others, one of those major problems being financial with job losses and many places being shut down temporarily and others being completely closed.

Through it all God answered prayers. We reached out to various churches and individuals and many donations for these classes came in. We were able, with your help, to grant scholarships to every student in these classes. It is always AWESOME to see God work in these matters.

So let me now give you the testimony of a new student to Bluegrass Baptist Seminary: Matheus Godoy, a new student to BBS who attended the virtual courses offered April 19-23 and 26-30. Previously Matheus attended a Bible College in the town where he lived. He had only taken one course when the COVID pandemic occurred and, due to the pandemic, he lost his job and could no longer pay for any more courses at the Bible College. After several months of waiting and struggling, he was forced to move back home to live with his parents. Discouragement overtook him as he lost faith of fulfilling God’s calling until one of our students and translators, Maycon Ribeiro, shared with him about BBS. Maycon invited Matheus to attend the virtual class being offered in April. Matheus’ discouragement turned into joy, especially when he found out that he had been given a scholarship for not just one course but for BOTH courses due to the donations to support the students in the Seminary. Just when Matheus thought his calling would go unanswered, God provided a way through YOU for that calling to continue.

So let us all give thanks for the contributions given by Churches, Pastors, BFM conference and many others to sponsor these seminary students during their very trying times. AWESOME is the God we serve. Two classes completed, all passed, all received scholarships—that makes for an AWESOME month.

Pastor Marcos is recovering very well and his wife who was 6 weeks hospitalized, intubated, and later tracked, is now home recovering—PRAYER WORKS!!!

We have scheduled 2 more virtual classes in June and will need help for some more scholarships for these students. Barbara and I will be leaving for Brasil on the 3rd of June to prepare for the next in country fall classes. Please pray for us and our protection from COVID as we travel internationally.

Once again THANKS for your financial support as we continue to follow God’s calling in our lives.

In His service,
Aj and Barbara

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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Faithful in Little, Faithful in Much

Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ,

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

Not long ago I was challenged by one of the people at the Chapel. If you are reading this and you are a pastor or a church leader you have probably been challenged to think through this too. And even if you are not a pastor or a church leader you have probably thought through this challenge before also. So, the challenge this Chapel lady gave me went something like this: “This Chapel is all about you. You do everything in the service. Nobody else gets a chance to get involved or to participate in the service. This Chapel is all about you”. 

First of all, I was forced to think through her challenge about the Chapel being all about me. Was I hoarding the service and ministry duties because of pride, or because I was the important one, or because nobody could do it better than me? I have had to think about this, not only when she spoke to me but also subsequently to that. And, no, I don’t think that is an issue. One, I am trying to give them an alternative, something different than they would typically receive in a typical Kitale church (that being: 1. Simple, Biblical teaching  2. Reasonable, heart-felt worship  3. A focus on knowing God and following Jesus  4. No health and wealth gospel  5. No “God is my genie” mentality  6. No emotional craziness  7. No…well, you get the point). I am the only one I trust right now to incorporate these elements. Two, there is no one who comes on a regular enough basis to entrust with ministry responsibilities.

I have always had the opinion that ministry responsibilities should be given to those who show faithfulness to a church, its services and its ministries. In other words, if you want to teach Sunday School then you should show yourself faithful to the church services and ministries. If you want to lead the worship and singing, then you should show that you are committed and dedicated to the services and ministries of the church. That is my opinion. The Chapel lady had another opinion. She told me that people were not being faithful because I hadn’t given them responsibilities and opportunities. If effect, her opinion was opposite of mine.

My view – Give ministry opportunities to those who show themselves to be faithful, committed and dedicated

Her view – Give ministry opportunities to the unfaithful, the non-committed and the un-dedicated in order to make them faithful, committed and dedicated

“He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much…” –Luke 16:10

I discussed this with her and gave her my position on the matter, explaining why I approached the matter in the way that I did. She obviously disagreed and told me that I should take a risk. After giving the matter some thought I decided to give the experiment a try after all. 

So, here is what I did. I asked one man if he would be the one to open up our services. I asked him to read a Bible passage, say a few words and pray in order to open up our weekly Sunday services. I asked another young man who knows how to play the guitar if he would learn a couple of songs and lead the Chapel in singing them. I let him choose some songs and I gave him song sheets with chords so that he could practice them and lead the Chapel to sing those songs on the next Sunday.

The results of my experiment? I am hesitant to share them, but, here they are. The man I asked to open our services came the next Sunday and did exactly what I had asked him to do. After that, he didn’t even show up for our services for three out of the next four Sundays, leaving me wondering if I should wait for him or start things myself. The other young man that I asked to lead some songs came the next Sunday but he hadn’t learned the songs. Then he missed two Sundays and when he returned on the third Sunday still hadn’t learned the songs, meaning I had to have songs ready each week to play, not knowing whether he would be ready or not. He still hasn’t learned the songs.

I don’t know if the results of my experiment are typical. I don’t know if I haven’t let it run long enough. I don’t know if it verifies my original opinion. Should I keep trying it? God knows.

Blessings to you all,
Roger, Julie & Chloe

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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