Group from Georgia Helps with Construction, Bible School, Food Baskets for Indians

The Hensleys have spent nearly 20 years serving in Brazil. They have established a church in Caraguatatuba and mission points throughout the city. They have also recently started a seminary to train pastors.

September 9, 2016

Dear friends and family,

Our last month at home in Caraguatatuba was a month of construction. We started by painting the house. You see, there, the homes require much more maintenance than here in the States. We finished the house and the group from Georgia arrived. It was a combined group from Centerville Baptist Church and Pinehurst Baptist Church. The Church had sent money for the new tile for the sanctuary, so we were ready and waiting when they got here. Our first task was to go shopping, and yes—the ladies were in charge of that part as they do it so well.

Then the next day, with no waiting, the tile work began. While the strong and able laid tile in the sanctuary, the rest put on their painting clothes. These tackled the high ceilings upstairs. While the painting job was just to put on the sealer coat, it was nonetheless important. The work continued for several days with little let up. But the end result is AWESOME!

This was an AWESOME week where we renewed old friendships and began new ones. We were able to do this because our friend Pastor David Grantham has assumed the leadership of the new church Pinehurst Baptist. So he led the group with two churches and everyone had a wonderful time.

Inside the new building in Caragua

Inside the new building in Caragua

We were also able to conduct a Bible School there at the Church and we had around 100 children in attendance. We had planned to do another Bible school at the Indians in Parati, but the group over tourism would not let the bus that we were using enter on the road where the Indians live. It was a great disappointment as we were not only going to do the Bible school, but the group had purchased some much needed food baskets for the Indians, and some repair on the swing set that this group had constructed in past trips. The missionary that works directly with the Indians was so upset because he told us that the Indians were in desperate need—so we made plans for him to come to Caragua to get as many baskets as his car could hold. He since has told us how much the Indians appreciated the baskets. You see, that was the only food some of them had for the month.

We got an email from the missionary just some days later with a picture showing us a tragedy that had occurred in a wind storm some days earlier. You see, the wind storm had uprooted a large tree and that tree had fallen on the swing set that the Americans had made for the children there. Well, when we get back to Brasil we will have to assess the damage and see what we all can do to set that swing set to right.

Loading the missionary's car with bags of food for the Parati Indians

Loading the car with bags of food for the Indians in Parati

Here I want to interject something: without YOU and people dedicated to missions, none of this can happen. Groups, financial support, prayer warriors, Baptist Faith Missions and other friends make this ministry here in Caragua able to do God’s will. We want to thank everyone for your contribution however it might be. Thanks sometimes does not seem enough—you all are AWESOME!!!

This does not let you off the hook, we still need lots of help. There is still work going on on the school property and so much more. See where God might use you in Brasil and let us know what He is calling you to do. We do have an apartment for those who want to stay longer than the normal 8 to 14 days.

Barb and I got to the States on the 26th of July and began the long journey of the radiation therapy to take care of the prostate cancer. We had been told that I would have 30 radiation treatments, but when we met with the oncologist, she wanted to add 7 more treatments. She also wants me to stay in the States for some follow up after the treatments are finished. So the trip that was to be over and we were to go back to Brasil on the first of November has been prolonged. But we are in God’s hands and we know that He is taking care of every aspect of my life. I have had about one third of the treatments today 9/9/16 and God has been faithful. I have had so few side effects they are not even worth mentioning. I take treatments Monday through Friday with the weekends off. So maybe I will see you in Church. Continue to pray for great results and good tolerance.

We hope to be in Brasil for Thanksgiving so if you need someplace to go to get out of the snow then come on down! We will put some more water in the beans and treat you so many different ways that you will have to like one.

Lord bless,
In His name,
Aj and Barb

Aj and Barbara Hensley
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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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