Desiring to Be Back in Brazil



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.

Friends and family,
Well, things are still on hold. We have been trying to keep our students excited about the Seminary and learning about God’s Word. So, we have tried the virtual learning and the first one was a make-up class for a couple that missed the first class that we taught in São Paulo.

Our desire is to be back in Brazil teaching those who want to be studying to teach their church members. But it seems that every time we think we are about to go we have another roadblock put in our way. Our plans seem to change daily. We are thinking that if we can get the vaccine, we could possibly be there around the first of the year. With our inability to be in Brazil, we are setting our tentative schedules for 2021 and putting it in the Lord’s hands because He is in control. So, our new schedule is for 4 classes in April which will be in Manaus and Porto Velho (jungle region). Then 4 classes in June conducted in São Paulo and Campinis. Then an undetermined number of virtual classes after the on-site classes. Then we are planning approximately 8 classes for September, October, and November and will be in 5 different cities. These are our schedules with the availability of our professors.

Please pray for our travel plans and for our professors and our protection from this virus. Thanks to each of our prayer warriors for your continued prayers for these classes.

I am going very slow with the healing of my ankle. Each day is a victory and I am still guarding the injury as I try to get back to normal.

We want to wish you all a merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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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Wisdom and Discernment Needed to Plan

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.

November 16, 2020

Dear friends and family,

It is totally amazing how fast time is passing. It seems only yesterday I weighed 187 pounds and here three months later, I am 204. I don’t understand what has happened. Well, I guess it is Barb’s AWESOME cooking and my immobility with the broken ankle. However, things are starting to heal. I am out of the boot that I had to wear for six weeks and off the knee buggy and am able to walk with a cane with a wrap on the ankle. I am ready for the healing to be completed and COVID to be over. But through it all God is AWESOME.

Sometimes we get impatient when our missions, our dreams, our visions get put on hold or what we think is a delay (oh me of little faith). Then I think of the Bible heroes and how some of them never got to realize their dreams and I remember what faith really is: Trusting in God even when we don’t see  an answer or do not get the answer that we want when we want it. Just hold on, God is not finished yet and yes, through it all, God is AWESOME.

We are continuing with our plans although it seems to change almost weekly. Today it looks like we will have four virtual classes in November and early December. Our students are chomping at the bits to get back to classes even if it has to be virtual. The students really want their classes to be face-to-face; however, we all understand our present situation with the restraints of travel with COVID.

Barb and I have been hoping to travel in late December ‘til mid-January to be with family and get some things settled for the Seminary. Our hope is to know by the first of December if this will be possible. So we’re praying for wisdom and discernment as we learn to trust Him more and walk by faith. Pray with us as we are very anxious to be about the Lord’s work that we are called to do. So, continue to pray for Bluegrass Baptist Seminary and Baptist Faith Missions and we will continue to pray for all of you who make this possible by your generosity and faithfulness.

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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A Challenging Month Prepping for 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,

Some months are what we consider more productive than others. This is one that has been a challenge. Limited mobility (broken ankle) and the China virus, of which our country and all the world is being challenged. So, we are working to establish another virtual class for our seminary group in São Paulo. This is the group that is closer to completing the 12 classes for a degree or a certification in Pastoral Ministries. These students, Pastors, missionaries, and church workers are also challenged as we are challenged. We, trying to get the class set up, and they, trying to be able to have the funds and the time to participate.

One of the classes from 2019

We are now permitted to have a certain number of virtual classes because of the China virus. So our proposal is to have five classes set up by the end of the 2021 summer. We have completed one class: Systematic Theology, book by Wayne Grudem. The professor was Dr. Coleman and the class was given in São Paulo and in Africa. The virtual classes are going to increase our outreach immensely. How AWESOME is our Lord, taking bad things and converting them into something good. We cannot brag on Him enough! Even though we have a few problems to overcome, all things are possible. Here is a good time to interject a particular prayer request: pray for the setting up, organization, and preparation by our pastors and other technologies we will encounter for these classes.

The book they are using

We are somewhat hesitant to purchase our tickets for Brasil as of yet since we are in doubt as to when we can travel in-country. We were hoping for the end of the year; however, that has been delayed until April 2021 now. Our plans now are to purchase our tickets for the spring of 2021 and praying that we do not have to cancel and reschedule again. We are still waiting to get reimbursed for the tickets in March. Please make this one of your prayer requests.

As I am traveling in Brasil it gives me opportunities to reacquaint myself with the Pastors and to know the problems that they are encountering and the struggles they have to overcome. Before and after classes and during our break time I am discussing all these things and getting their ideas as to how we can overcome these problems. I also use this time to encourage them and to pray with them. I don’t have all the answers but I can work with them in these areas. So I am asking you for your prayers for the Brasilian pastors and church workers to keep on keeping on in the vocation they have been called to accomplish: His mission —Go—Teach—Reach. This is going to be and is accomplished because of you. Your prayerful support and financial help is more than AWESOME!!!!

Continue to pray for us as we were chomping at the bits to get back to Brasil to carry on with God’s work there.
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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Planning Continues for 2021 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.

September 17, 2020

Dear friends and family,

This has been a month that went into our history books. So for a moment let’s ALL remember the lives that were lost on 9/11, and pray for their families and others affected on that tragic date. This is especially close to me as I served with the Lexington Fire Department for 23 years before I surrendered to the call to be a missionary to Brasil. God is AWESOME, we do not always understand all but one thing never changes, God is God. It is He who is in control!!

It has been another month for planning and preparation, but before I get into that I need to tell you about an interruption that has happened to me this month. While doing some clean up on the property here in Lexington I had an accident. I was removing some tree limbs from a trailer and lost my balance and began to fall. So I jumped and landed wrong and broke my ankle. Now I am wearing one of those boots and looking to be wearing it for 6 weeks. But the good part of this is that I did not have to have surgery.

As the planning continues, both here and in Brasil, we are zooming with our pastors there, working with leaders and professors here, and we are confirming dates for our 2021 classes. This planning involves choosing the locations, the professors, the translators, and the tech support people. We have completed our first virtual class. There were some minor glitches but we are getting them corrected. So, we have the first of many under our belt and looking forward to many more.

We request your prayers for this ministry and all our involved partners and volunteers, students, and most of all—YOU— our financial supporters and prayer partners.

It is with much appreciation and gratitude that I express our love and prayers to all of you who sponsor, support, and loyally give to BFM. During this pandemic we appreciate even more your financial support as we know you have families and it gets harder to continue your outside giving. So, one more time THANK YOU for your financial support and prayerful intercession for our ministry.

In His service,
Aj and Barbara

CONTACT INFO

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

Click here to give online.




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Studies Being Taught in BBS

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.

August 19, 2020

Dear friends and family,

This month has flown by with little change so we thought we would show you the studies that are being taught in Bluegrass Baptist Seminary. These are the classes with a description of them.

Bluegrass Baptist Seminary Course Listing/ Descriptions

  • BBS:101 Systematic-Theology

The Christian church has a long tradition of systematic theology, that is, studying theology and doctrine organized around fairly standard categories. This course presents material in each of these categories for the purpose of preparing students for ministry within the local church. The categories are examined in depth with an in-depth focus of contemporary application for today’s church.

  • BBS-102 Old Testament Survey

This course is designed to provide a basic introduction to each book of the Old Testament. While traditional topics such as authorship, date, and historical context will be covered, there will be special focus on the revelation of Jesus Christ in each book. There also is a focus on providing keys to understanding each book in the context of the entirety of the Scriptures.

  • BBS-103 New Testament Survey

This course is designed to provide a basic introduction to each book of the New Testament. While traditional topics such as authorship, date, and historical context will be covered, there will be special focus on the revelation of Jesus Christ in each book. There also is a focus on providing keys to understanding each book in the context of the entirety of the Scriptures

  • BBS-104 Pastoral Ministries

This course is designed to equip students for pastoral ministry by examining the various aspects of ministry required of pastors serving in local congregations. Also, it includes identifying the biblical absolutes, priorities, and qualifications needed for effective pastoral ministry within the local church.

  • BBS-105 Theology of Evangelism

This course provides a general introduction to the theology of evangelism. The course is divided into three major units: (1) Foundational Tenets of Evangelism; (2) Preaching Components of Evangelism; and (3) Practical Aspects of Evangelism. The purpose of this course is to provide the local pastor with basic theological understanding and tools for implementing a biblical plan of evangelism in the local church.

  • BBS-106 Theology of Discipleship

This course provides a general introduction to the theology of discipleship. The course is divided into three major units: (1) Evaluation of Today’s Discipleship in the Local Church; (2) Biblical Foundations for Discipleship; and (3) Church-Based Discipleship. The purpose of this course is to provide the local pastor with basic theological understanding and tools for implementing a biblical plan of discipleship in the local church.

  • BBS-107 Lexical Hebrew

This course provides the student with the basics for working in the Hebrew biblical language. It includes a basic presentation of Hebrew grammar, such as recognizing vowel markings and sentence structure. This is not a language course, per se, but provides tools for use such as lexicons, dictionaries, and grammars, to assist the student in gaining a better understanding of a biblical text.

  • BBS-108 Lexical Greek

This course provides the student with the basics for working in the Greek biblical language. It includes a basic presentation of Greek grammar, such as recognizing verb endings and sentence structure. This is not a language course, per se, but provides tools for use such as lexicons, dictionaries, and grammars, to assist the student in gaining a better understanding of a biblical text.

  • BBS-109 Biblical Proclamation

This course provides a general introduction for developing an expository sermon. The course is divided into four major units: (1) The Need for Expository Preaching; (2) Expository Sermon Preparation; and (3) Expository Preaching Hermeneutics, and (4) Delivering an Expository Sermon. The purpose of this course is to provide the local pastor with basic theological understanding and tools for preparing and delivering expository sermons.

  • BBS-110 Survey of Church History

This course provides a general overview of the history of the church. The course covers the major events and philosophies of the church from 6 BCE to the end of the 20th century. It focuses on the historical setting and explanation of Christian ideas and institutions. The purpose of this course is to provide students with an annotated timeline of the church’s develop from the 1st century through the 20th century.

  • BBS-111 Introduction to Christian Apologetics

This course studies Christian apologetics and its implications for and application to evangelism. It provides students with an explanation of key components within Christian apologetics. Points of tension between and within various apologetic methods are explored in the course as well. The purpose of this course is to aid students in the development of effective apologetic approaches for evangelizing people in the contemporary culture.

  • BBS-112 Thesis Paper Writing

This course serves as an information class for writing a thesis paper. The student will learn techniques and styles for researching and writing a thesis paper. The course includes one week of in-class instruction and 4 months of research and writing. Upon completion of the thesis paper the student will defend their work to a seminary thesis committee. Upon successful defense (defined as receiving a passing grade), the course is complete.

These are the classes we are scheduling for 2021. Please pray for the courses and the professors and the Pastors planning to attend the classes. We serve an AWESOME God and we know that He is in control of everything that is happening. So, we are trusting that He will make everything right and in His timing.

In His service,
AJ and Barb

CONTACT INFO

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


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Paperwork & Planning for 2021

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.

July 18, 2020

Dear friends and family,

I have told you before how it is sometimes hard to get a letter started because I don’t know where to start. Well this is one of those times.

I have been totally blessed in that I have been to all my doctors and done all the tests. So now all the results have been sent back to the doctors and here are the AWESOME RESULTS. My PSA is undetectable (for those of you who have not dealt with prostate cancer, that is excellent), my heart is good, just working a little slower because of my age, my sugar diabetes needs me to eat better, lose a little bit and add one pill that I had been able not to take earlier. Oh well, over all I am good. I am going to blame the weight gain on the virus (being cooped in and eating everything I see, how can a poor boy win?). But I am blessed.

We are using this down time to get a lot of paperwork and planning done for the Seminary. Our goal is still the same for Blue Grass Baptist Seminary: providing the saints of Brasil with a solid understanding of God’s truth in Scripture, also equipping them to evangelize, disciple, and build God’s Kingdom in Brasil. We have been on the phone, the internet, and zoom with the pastors in Brasil looking at the schedule for 2021.

We had a couple in São Paulo who missed our first class there because of their first child. They asked when we would be giving that class again so that they could graduate with their original class. We had been looking into virtual classes, so we will be using this as an experiment for doing just that. We are hoping to do this soon, but that means that we have to have our Portuguese website up and running so this can happen. Will you pray with us for all the hurdles we are having to jump through at this time will be scaled with ease? The other concern is to not do anything to impede our accreditation status there in Brasil. Just lots more RED TAPE. Praise God we got the word that we can have 1/3 of our classes virtual this upcoming semester.

We have been working on the specific dates, assigning professors, and lining up the sites for the classes for this upcoming 2021 year. In doing this, we have run into a few things that we ask for your prayers for: two of our regular professors have accepted calls to new churches and they do not know if they will be able to teach in 2021. Pray these new churches will have the same hearts for missions that their previous churches had. If not, pray that God provides other Pastors to fill their places.

We have been able to accomplish all this planning with the great technology that is out there today. We have communicated with and have seen all those involved in this ministry through zoom and FaceTime.

Our greatest need right now is to be able to get to Brasil to teach those faithful Pastors, Sunday school teachers and Church workers. Pray with us as we work for Gods Kingdom through Bluegrass Baptist Seminary and Baptist Faith Missions.

In His service,
Aj and Barb

Contact Info:
AJ & Barbara Hensley
Cell #s — AJ: 859-539-2302 / Barb: 859-539-1424
ajcaragua@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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Preparing to Equip Amidst Bumps in the Road

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.

June 22, 2020

Friends and family,

Serving as a missionary has been and is one of the most AWESOME things of my life. Though there have been some bumps on the road, the love of this calling is still AWESOME. These last three years have been filled with more bumps than the others. First there was the discovery of cancer, the operation of the cancer (they did not get all the cancer with this surgery), then after the waiting time for the surgery to heal, I had 38 radiation treatments—and to further assure that the cancer was gone, they started injections in the stomach of hormones for a year (this was more painful than any of the other treatments).

We do not always know what God has in store for our lives, but we know that He is in control. After all this I was sure that God was not finished with me yet. So instead of planting churches, my focus has moved to equipping the pastors and church workers with a seminary to train them in the Word. So, the way of doing God’s work has changed, not our focus.

As we enter into the second year of the seminary there is another bump in our road. The COVID-19 virus. As you know, this has changed all our lives and our way of life. So, we have had to cancel all the classes for 2020. Not only has COVID-19 changed our lives, but also the lives of the Brazilians. So, now we can no longer go to Brazil, and when the virus reaches Brazil, they are like Americans, they are quarantined and without work. This all means that we cannot go to Brazil, but even if we could, the pastors will not have any money to pay for their courses.

Now we are using this time to plan for next year. And boy, what a year it will be. So that we can make up the year we are losing this year, we are looking at having 20 classes in 2021. This means that we have to schedule the classes back-to-back so that I will be able to accompany each of the American professors.

We will be allowed to conduct 7 of the classes in the virtual format. This is something that we have been working on since the virus. The rest of the classes will be held in seven different locations. These will be with the professors, the translators, and me.

Well, I have seemed to ramble, but all to show that even though we have been in quarantine, we have continued to work.

We need much prayer for these plans to go forward smoothly. So please get on your knees and lift us up to the Lord because we know the AWESOME God that is in charge, and He knows the plans He has for our lives.

In His service,
Aj and Barb

Contact Info:
AJ & Barbara Hensley
Cell #s — AJ: 859-539-2302 / Barb: 859-539-1424
ajcaragua@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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A Look Back

Barbara Hensley has served the Lord in Brazil, South America, with her husband AJ since 1996. They have worked with orphanages, started mission points, established churches, and are presently conducting a seminary for Brazilian pastors.

Dear friends and family,

Well, this month, we wives have been asked to write the letters. So, I have been thinking of my time as a missionary wife and all the different things I have done. But my mind returns to now and how everything has been put on hold because of the pandemic. I have been struggling with what to write in this letter so I think I will do a quick look back.

When we first came to Brasil our goal was to be helpers to Odali and Kathy Barros. We went to Vera Cruz, São Paulo, Brasil. There I walked to their house every day to help Kathy with the boys they had in their home. This was the start of the Orphanage.

Now I want to tell you that we went to Brasil without knowing the language, which is Portuguese. This is not something that I would recommend for a new missionary. So, we encountered many things that were language barriers in our day-to-day lives. For example, we learned how to say “bread”, but went to get some and did not know the word for how many we wanted, but we could hold up how many fingers. One day I wanted to make some bread and went to the store to get flour, but did not know the word for “flour”, so I looked for something that might indicate that it was flour but did not find anything. And this time, I could not figure out how to motion anything for that word. These are just two of the many challenges I faced.

I spent the majority of my days alongside Kathy, so she was my translator. But when I went home, we only had each other to communicate with. It was so funny. When a Brasilian tried to talk to us and we did not respond because we did not understand, they would just repeat it…only louder because they thought we did not hear them.

We moved later to the next city as Odali and Kathy moved to be closer to the Church and to have more space for the children. In these two places, my job remained the same: helper in the daily routine. We stayed in the house that we were able to rent for some time. Then in this town, we were to be able to get the use of an old abandoned hospital because the house that Odali and Kathy had was quickly getting too small.

In this place my duties became more intense as AJ and I became house parents to various boys. So then 24/7 we were in charge of the care of these boys. Their clothes, the managing of their chores, their studies, their bedtimes—well, you understand—all in. There were times I would sit up all night with a sick one, bake cookies at the last minute for a school party, etc.

After several years in Garça, we were invited to help another missionary couple start another orphanage. But after some time in this place it became clear that the Mayor of the town did not want Americans opening an orphanage in his town, so God moved us again.

This time we visited Odali’s brother and were invited to help him in his church. We have spent over 14 years in this town: Caraguatatuba. My work changed from a mother to boys at an orphanage to wife of a pastor. But in each phase of our lives, my main focus has been on the children. Whether it be in an orphanage or in a church, children naturally gravitated to me. It did not seem to matter that I am very strict with them; they seem to want this in their lives.

We have been just like all of you for some time, quarantined in a home in Florida, because it was from there that we were going to fly to Brasil. So, when this pandemic is over, our trips to Brasil for the Seminary will begin again.

I will close this letter with a story a Pastor here in Florida told me recently. He said when he heard at a Baptist Faith Missions Conference that AJ had been accepted as a missionary with BFM, he just shook his head. He thought AJ would make a good missionary, but he was sure that I would not last over a month. This pastor telling me this asked for my forgiveness at the Conference this year. Well I have, through God’s grace been on the field with AJ for 23 years. And with God’s grace, I think that I have a few more in me.

Thank each and every one of you for your faithful prayers and financial support—because missionaries do not do this on our own, it takes ALL of us working together.

In His service,
Barbara Hensley

Contact Info:
AJ & Barbara Hensley
Cell #s — AJ: 859-539-2302 / Barb: 859-539-1424
ajcaragua@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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