Missionary Update: The Hensleys in Brazil [February 2014]

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.

February 11, 2014

Dear Friends and Family,

Sometimes it is hard to imagine how busy we can get.

The new Year began with our New Year Eve service and here being a good Baptist, we had an AWESOME meal. Lots of good fellowship and good food. We started praying at 7 minutes til midnight and prayed in the new year. There was something that made the New Year special, and that was that we had our good friends from the States with us, PJ and Jenny Thompson, from Cornerstone Baptist Church. They are here for 3 months to get better acquainted with the work and to help with the ministeries. AWESOME! It is great when I think about it, PJ retired in 2013, and now he is experiencing missions to help him decide where he can be used by the Lord in his retirement. He is very active in Prison ministries in the States and various other ministries.

Just a little plug more+++++++ What are you doing in your retirement? I think sometimes we forget just how useful we can be. Just an extra hand here or there can make all the difference in the world, not to mention how much the encouragement can be. Discover where God is working in your retirement and get involved!!

Right after the New Year, our mission Church celebrated it’s first year of ministry. How AWESOME is that!! We have some great children. Now I am not saying that we have a Sunday School full of angels, but it is great to see them in Church on Sunday mornings, eager to hear about God. We have around 40 in regular attendance, but with the holidays we are playing catch up right now. The kids are getting back to their normal routine.

Our Church membership is now 30 and growing. This past week we had a baptism with 4 more new members added and this week we will be having another baptism. Pray for this new work and the new members. Our attendance on Sunday nights, which is our major service, is running from 50 to 80 people. God is truly in this new work.

As it is with many Churches, we have been having much sickness in our membership. We are asking that you join with us in prayer for these in their treatment and recovery: Mrs. Gloria, one of our widows, is receiving treatment for cancer, both radiation and chemotherapy. Barb has been taking her to the Dr.’s appointments and treatments from 3 times per week until even more. Mrs. Jandira has circulation problems in her legs and has been bedfast for about 3 months. Leo had a motorcycle accident and broke his leg in several places and busted his knee cap. Damion has had surgery on his ear and is having problems with the healing. Cesar had a piece of equipment fall on him at work and has not been able to work for some time. Rosevaldo, our Brasillian Pastor, is having all of his teeth pulled and some of you know what he is going through with that. Maria Ivete has problems with her knees and is having physical therapy. Kiser has had by-pass surgery and is recovering at home. In all of these sicknesses, we can only give thanks. Sometimes we think, how awful is this, but we as a Church have taken it as a blessing. It has put us in our place, on our knees and looking up! Please join us in prayer for all these that are in need.

Along with Pj and Jenny, our Brasilllian son Edson has been with us here in Caragua for the holidays. Always great to have him here with us. When the holidays are over he will return to college he will start his 4th year of vet training. How AWESOME is that !!! God is so good.

Our daughter Mary and her family also got to spend some time with us. We got to spoil the grandchildren for almost 2 weeks. It is always great when they visit. For many of you, I don’t have to tell you how grandparents feel about grandchildren, they are AWESOME!!!

Well, it would not be another month without car problems. Barb’s car needs shocks and the air conditioner is broken. My truck has starter problems and is in the garage with suspension problems. We had to wait two weeks for the parts and when we got them, we took it to the garage to be fixed. Last night the mechanic came by the house to tell me that the parts were not the right parts. So now we will be another week without the truck. These cars are 15 years old and need lots of prayers! Just another month on the field.

This week we went to Sao Paulo to do some work in an orphanage. There were many needs there getting their buildings back up to code. We were able to help with the ceilings. We had to rip out the old ceiling because they were not fire code and the replacement will be fire rated material. Seven men of our Church made the trip. Yes, it was hot, messy and tiring, but playing with the children made it all worth while. We were able to let them see what 7 men can do when they set their minds to it and we had fun doing it.

For the first year in our new work, we have laid a great foundation. We have been preaching and teaching on prayer. Now that the foundation has been laid, we are moving on to the walls, and that is evangelism. We will be preaching on evangelism and putting this knowledge into practice on Wednesday nights. We are preparing ourselves to witness without fear. The theme for this year is “Each one reach one.”

So with all of our problems and blessings I ask that you pray with us and for us, and watch us grow!!!

You too can be a part of this work that God is doing in Caraguatatuba. Come on down and get your feet wet in the river of God’s blessings. Your bed is made and the beans are on the stove.

In His service,
Aj and Barbara Hensley

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