Missionary Update: AJ & Barbara Hensley [October 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,

Forgive us for not writing to you last month. We have been in such a whirlwind of events that the time just got away from us. Nothing has slowed down yet but we seem to have gotten our priorities in order this month.

We were in the States for 2 weeks in August with Barb’s Mother to help her celebrate her 90th birthday. That was a blessing. While there I was also privileged to preach at Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church where Pastor Thomas is the pastor. While there we were so rushed that all I had time to do was to gain more weight. That is so easy to put on and so hard to get rid of. (lol)

On returning we were blessed with a group from Centerville Baptist Church in Georgia. They were an AWESOME ministry group for our public schools. With them we were able to reach two schools to spread the gospel. We did Bible Schools and a work project in each school. Just saying that it does not seem like much ministry but the inroads made were AWESOME. The principals were astonished that we were willing to help with some needed repairs that they had been unable to get done. Then the friendships that were established with the children are truly amazing. One of the schools is located near the Vocational School and here we will be able to do more follow-up with the school and principal.

This group gave one AWESOME day for us working at the Vocational School. We were able to hang doors and do some interior painting in the dorm house. God is so AWESOME.

The ladies at Centerville were so gracious in making cloth bags for us to use in the food basket ministry that we did while the group was here. I must take my hat off to the ladies in the sewing group–they did an AWESOME job. We were able to mount 43 food bags and the majority of those were taken to the Indians at their reservation. What an unexpected blessing for these Indians that the Government has practically forgotten. This tribe I must say is very very poor. This word does not tell just how bad the situation is for these people. Their spiritual lives are just as bad as their physical lives. They have served so many gods for so long in their tradition that it is very hard to break through to them and make them understand that there is only one God. There are about 250 in this tribe and there is another tribe in the same area. Pray for these Indians, and for the people that work with them, that they would hear the word and accept the only living God as their Savior and Lord.

The remainder of these food baskets were given to some of the families in our church. We sometimes forget those who do not have 3 square meals a day because we do have. Everybody just simply does not have the basic necessities. So what an AWESOME blessing for the Church to be able to minister with these basic necessities. Thanks, Pastor Allen and Church!

While talking about the Church–ours is going great. We have around 90 members and the fellowship is growing along with the membership. We are having around 140 in attendance on Sunday night and this is a blessing to see.

This past weekend the ladies of the Church had a Ladies Retreat. It was a great blessing to many women. They received cloth bags that were sewn by the sewing group there at Centerville Church also. Everyone loved their gift. When the retreat ended, Barb and I headed out on a 3 hour trip for me to preach at the Church in Natividadi da Serra. We helped begin this mission 6 years ago and now it is a Church established for 1 year. It was my pleasure to preach at this one-year anniversary and to see the growth that has occurred in these years. They started out in a house then moved to a room then opened the front of the room and added a covered garage. They are now spilling out to the street. They started with 6-8 children and Pastor George and Alda. Sunday night there were 80 or more in attendance. Those children that were there at the beginning are now adult teenagers leading music and one has surrendered to the ministry. What God is doing there in that location is AWESOME!!!!! As you can tell they are needing some land to build a new building. Please make this a matter of prayer for the Church at Natividadi da Serra.

Well it is beginning our Spring and soon it will be Summer and HOT here so if you get tired of the cold there in the States just call and we will put some more water in the beans and turn down your bed. In other words you are always welcome here in Caraguatatuba, Sao Paulo. We will be honored to show you what God is doing with your mission dollars.

This photo does not show you the awful conditions but you can see some of the Indian children that desperately need Jesus as their Savior.

In His service,

Aj and Barbara

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