Missionary Update: AJ & Barbara Hensley in Brazil [August 2012]

The Hensleys have spent nearly 15 years serving in Brazil. They run a vocational school and orphanage in Caraguatatuba and have also established a church and mission points throughout the city.

Dear friends and family,

These last 6 weeks have been totally AWESOME. We have had Americans visiting with us from July 28th til August 2nd. They were a great help in the work. We have lots to tell you about. First we got three young men from different Baptist Churches and they came to spend 6 weeks to experience the mission field. With them, we began to prepare for the month of July. The second group arrived and we began the work that we had been planning. Our first Bible School of the month was in a very poor neighborhood.These children had never had contact with a group of Americans (North Americans) before so this created a stir in the neighborhood. I am sure that helped with the attendance. The children loved to hear English spoken. While one group was doing the Bible School another group was helping construct dividers for the office in the Social Center. Also they built an area where medicine could be stored waiting to be distributed at a later date. Lots of doors were opened for future ministry.This work lasted two days.

We then took the group to the state of Rio de Janeiro where we had heard of an Indian tribe that we could take the gospel to. This tribe is the Guarani Indians. We arrived at their village by driving about 10 miles on a dirt road (that day it was mud). We did not have trouble getting there because being from Owsley County, Kentucky, we had experience on these kinds of roads. This tribe has been placed on this mountainside by the Federal Government and told to survive the best way they can. Needless to say, they have many, many needs. So knowing some of these needs beforehand we asked the Americans to bring warm clothes to distribute to the children as we are in our cold season. We united in the community Church and made bags of these clothes and hygiene supplies (soap, toothpaste, brushes, etc.). We then went to the village where we met with the Chief of the tribe, we gave him blankets for the cold and a special gift for him. We gave him a leather man knife with all the bells and whistles. This sealed our friendship. He then gave his permission for us to enter the village and work with the children. But now to add another twist–lots of the children did not read nor write in their language (Guarani) nor in Portuguese. And just some of the adults speak Portuguese. Their language is Guarani. This was a challenge to say the least.

Well we were able to get past all these problems and the Bible School was AWESOME with the help of the group from Porter Memorial Baptist Church in Lexington, Kentucky, and the help of the three young men that had been with us since June. One of the young men is from First Baptist Church in Centerville, Georgia, another is from Second Baptist Church in Warner Robbins, Georgia, and the other is from Garça, Brazil. God put an AWESOME group together to do this special project. While part of the group was doing a Bible School, the others were able to help in the construction of a widow’s home. They were able to build two major walls on the home and left some materials for another group to continue the work. We have heard that another Baptist Church from Rio has come this weekend to finish the house. While there, we discovered that there are at least 2 believing Christians. What an opportunity to tell people that do not know about our Lord and Savior about what He has done for them. I also found out that there is a Bible printed in their native language. One of the young men that was here called his Sunday School class and they received an offering on the spot for about 10 Bibles for this Indian tribe. I think we need to start a “drive” for Bibles for this tribe. What about 100 Bibles? That would cost about $1,000.00 dollars. Are you in for this? These Indians need lots of prayer–for personal health and housing just to start with–and all of but 2 of them for their personal salvation.

When the Porter group left, the parents of Ross, the young man from Centerville, came to spend a week before taking their son back home. They were able to finish some drywall in the office/school room at the School. While here, they purchased food baskets and were honored to deliver these baskets with them to the needy families in our Church.

Well, we have said “Good bye” to our three young men . They have made an AWESOME impact on our youth here in Caraguatatuba at Igreja Batista Novo Tempo. They are already missing them.

So we have an empty nest again. So if you want to come see us, the beds have been changed and everything is clean with a mint on the pillow. “So come on down!”

In His service,

Aj and Barb

Give to Baptist Faith Missions.