Fellowship with Family

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

February 10, 2021

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

You are a source of encouragement and joy and to Judy and me. We are presently in the home of Paul and Wanda enjoying fellowship with them and Dad. David, our brother from Manaus, surprised us by arriving just a few hours after us earlier this week. The time together, so rare, is a blessing.

These have been trying times. A number of people we know in Manaus have died from Covid-19. The church that David pastors has been losing about 2 people each day as they pass from this world into the presence of the Lord. The church has been active in acquiring and distributing oxygen to the sick and supplying needs for the ill and families that are left with no living wage earner.

The Hatcher Brothers with their Dad
(David, John Mark, Paul, and John A.)

Judy and I have been working hard to wrap up things in the Evansville concerning Peggy’s estate so that we can return to France. There have been many complications, but God supplies abundantly and has displayed His love and grace in marvelous ways. Our spiritual and physical families have helped enormously in this process. All of our children have come to help for several days and we have enjoyed fellowship with them in the midst of intense activity.

We met twice physically with Resurgence church in January. It is very encouraging to witness the desires of this relatively young Baptist church. They want to reach the lost and help the saints. As with all of you, the meeting numbers are limited and many participate by means of the internet. It is a great blessing to have this medium available which also enables us to participate actively with our assembly in France.

Though there are many restrictions in France due the effort to minimize the spread of the Corona Virus, it appears that we can meet the requirements to return in the near future. Thank you for your prayers and support in every way. May God bless each of you as you seek His will in serving Him during these difficult times.

Your fellow servants,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

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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Opportunities Arise as You Walk with Jesus

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

September 3, 2019

Dear Co-Laborers in Christ,

I am sitting in the glider on David and Dulce’s porch listening to the cicadas. God’s wonderful creation even in its suffering state is absolutely amazing. Judy and I had the enjoyment of time with our grandchildren while David and Dulce celebrated their 15th wedding anniversary. We were able to come to Chicago to spend time with our children and grandchildren because Peggy, Judy’s sister is doing much better. Thank each of you for your prayers on her behalf.

In Evansville, Indiana, this past month we also spent time with Philip, Amanda and our granddaughters from France. Our oldest grandchild, Abigail, began her first year studying to be a Physical Therapist. We will certainly miss her as a missionary in France, but God continues to guide her as He does each of us giving her the privilege of being His light at the University of Evansville. Philip and the rest of his family are now back in France.

David & Dulce with their family

John & Judy with some of their grandchildren in Chicago

Sometimes an opportunity to share the light of Jesus comes when we least expect it. The following incident that took place this Spring near our home in Tournefeuille is an example. Judy and I were on our daily trek when we came alongside a young lady who was walking her dog of a rare breed. We commented on the beauty of her dog and ask her about its breed. She mentioned that she had seen us out trekking before. This led to a conversation about where we were from and her volunteering that she had been to New York and was impressed by the multi course meal that she ate there. I was impressed, considering the fact that meals in France usually have many more courses than American meals.

Her features led me to ask if she was of Italian descent. You know, New York, big meals… She then said that she was Jewish and was in New York visiting distant relatives at the time of a religious holiday. This led to discussion of Judaism. She told us that her family was non-practicing but that her mother named her Elliana because God answered her prayer to have a child. This led to a brief discussion of the beauty of her name and the God who loves. It also stirred my heart to prayed repeatedly about our next contact with this young lady and that she would come to trust Christ.

While in the US, Judy and I trek in parks. As we cross people or walk along beside them great opportunities arise. We have had the opportunity to witness, to fellowship with believers, hear the testimonies of others. God is always at work.

So, let us all walk with Jesus this month… and the next … and the next.

Your fellows on this journey,
John and Judy

John Mark & Judy Hatcher

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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Tourism Boat Offered for Missions; Difficult Moments

Odali and Kathy Barros served the Lord in Sao Paulo, Brazil together from 1987-2013. In late 2013, they transitioned to Manaus in Northern Brazil to start sharing the Gospel and planting churches in villages along the river.

July 30, 2019

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Time goes by so fast that it is hard to believe August is here.  We pray and hope all is well with each of you. We have had wonderful moments and some difficult ones, but we know that God is in control and all we need is to trust Him.

Our son Jonas and his wife Kelly were expecting their first child, due at any moment, then the baby stopped moving. Well, they went to the doctor and there was no more heartbeat. The baby was born naturally at 9:45 pm tonight at the hospital and the mother is well. Pray for them that God will comfort their hearts.

Boat used for tourism that will be used for missions off-season

New building at Iranduba

John A. Hatcher back in Manaus with sons
Paul (left) and David (right)

We are so thankful for all the friends and supporters that gave special offerings for the needs we had. The freezers for camp and us and the money for the car documents and truck to be fixed. God bless each one.

There is a Christian man in the city nearby that works with fishing tourism. They are building a new boat to use, and I am helping with the woodwork. This boat is not used the whole year so the man said that we can use it for mission trips when it is not being used! That will give us about 5 months to use it! Pray that God will guide us in the ministry.

The work in Iranduba at the new building has started back. Looks like this new area will be really great to reach out to more people. There are many children in this neighborhood. Pray that God will help and guide us as we reach out to this new area.

Also, we had a great surprise with the return of Paul and Wanda to Manaus. This makes Dad be close to the three of his children! Dad enjoys having us near him!

Thanks for your prayers and support! God bless each of you.

Odali and Kathy

Odali & Kathy Barros
Iranduba, Amazonas
Brasil, S.A.

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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Celebrating the Church’s 90th Birthday in New Building with New Professions of Faith!

Mike and Beverly Creiglow have served the Lord in Cruzeiro do Sul, Acre, Brazil together since 1971. In addition to pastoring First Baptist of Cruzeiro do Sul, Mike builds his own boats and frequently travels up and down rivers to share the Gospel with those who have never heard.

June 18, 2019

Dear Brethren,

For a long time, we have known that we needed to expand our facilities if we wanted to continue to absorb growth. To that end we built a new steel building over the top of our old building. That was the easy part. Getting up the gumption to tear down the old building and rebuild was the hard part. It had to be done though, so on January 13th we held our last service in the old building. From there on out we held services on the third floor of the annex.

On January 18th we started the demolition. The goal was to move back in by the church’s birthday on May the 12th. Those four months were intense, to say the least. I only made three mission trips during that period. For the whole time I worked 10 to 18-hour days. Naturally, I caught a lot of grief from my wife (not so much because of the long hours), but because from time to time I was 30 feet above the ground in the rafters. The Lord protected us all and there were no serious accidents or injuries.

On May the 10th we held a three-day meeting to celebrate the church’s 90th birthday. Brother Joe Brandon organized the church with 13 members on May 12, 1929. Today the church has well over 1600 members including those who are in our 9 chapels here in town. Pastor David Hatcher was our guest speaker. On Saturday we had our annual pastors and missionaries meeting with over 100 workers present.

Our former seating capacity was 830. The goal was to double that with the new building. We put every available bench, pew and chair in there. We still had room for another 200 seats. We filled the building every night. The guys who take care of stats for me counted over 1400 on Sunday night. The best thing though was that during the meeting there were 24 professions of faith.

A few months ago, I designed the new pews for our new building. We managed to get 8 of those finished for the church to see in time for the anniversary services. We will be building over 100 of these to be able to fill those extra spaces and replace some of the older pews. I am telling this mostly for the following reason: I told the church that once we got moved back in, I was going to take off a month and rest. So just before I left Cruzeiro do Sul, I stretched out on one of the new pews to begin my rest!

Bev and I have been in the States for almost a month. We will be returning to Brazil on June 20. I still have most of the finish work on the building awaiting me besides 3 other building projects, not to mention all the other regular jobs that I must keep up with. So, pray and rejoice with us about all the great things that are happening in Cruzeiro do Sul.

Thanks for all of your prayers and support. God bless you as much as He has us.

In Christ,
Mike Creiglow

Mike and Beverly Creiglow
Caixa Postal 24
Cruzeiro do Sul, Acre, Brazil 69980
mdcreig [at] hotmail.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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Fellowship with Friends & Family

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

July 30, 2018

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Thank you for taking a few moments to read about what God is doing around us. We thank God for each of you who partner with us as we proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ in Southern France and seek to make disciples to Jesus.

Our son David and his family arrived a few days ago from their home in Chicago to spend a good part of the summer with us. We are delighted by this opportunity to spend precious time with them. It has the added benefit of keeping us younger.

Celebrating grandson Téo’s 4th birthday

Relaxing time with Joachim and Family

Samuel, a young man who trusted Christ and was baptized in our church here in Tournefeuille a few years ago, was united in matrimony with a delightful young lady this past weekend. Though they now live in Paris, the marriage was held here to make it possible for local friends, family and spiritual family to participate. Philip’s family led and presented the music. The bride was saved and baptized in the Paris Center Baptist Church where Samuel is now a member. The mobility of our present world was clearly exemplified by the numerous nationalities of those present. It is a reminder to all of us that God often opens doors to other people groups by bringing them to our doorstep.  Are there others in your community that you need to get to know so that you can present the Gospel in action and word?

Yesterday we had a packed house for the Sunday meeting. This is a bit rare in the month of July which is vacation time. Other than the previous week when nearly everyone in our assembly was out of town, we have had good attendance this summer. We are now studying the letter to the Galatians. One of the men in our assembly has expressed the delight that he sees in this book where we are reminded that God has saved us to set us free. He says that this is quite a contrast to the religion in which he was reared that constantly laid down requirements and never gave assurance.

A couple weeks ago Philip’s family, Judy and I had the privilege of having dinner and an evening of fellowship together with Joachim and his family. He was the first person baptized here. Philip and Amanda were the primary disciplers of this family which was with us for several years. We miss them greatly since they moved away but are grateful that they are actively involved in a good church near Hamburg, Germany.

Thank you for your active participation in what God is doing here and may He make you fruitful as you serve him where you are.

In Christ in France,
John and Judy

John Mark & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France

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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Believers in France Step Up to the Plate; Opportunities in Evansville

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

May 2, 2017

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Thanks to each of you for your prayers. Judy is progressing in her recovery from the broken patella. She is now in Physical Therapy twice a week along with daily exercises at home. The immobilizer is still in place around the clock, but Judy handles it quite well especially considering the fact that she is normally quite active. We are glad to be here and to be able to assist Peggy. She continues to be treated. Pray for the girls as they experience my cooking, housekeeping and driving.

God is providing fellowship and extra blessings through believers here in the Evansville area. It is a good time for us to remember and pray for those in a number of countries who cannot enjoy fellowship without risk of persecution and physical death. My brother Paul detoured to see us on the way from Florida to attend the Spring Missionary Conference at Thompson Rd. Baptist Church in Lexington, KY. We had a very enjoyable visit. My brother David should be arriving this afternoon to visit for a couple of days. He added us to a whirlwind trip from Manaus, Brazil to celebrate dad’s 92nd birthday. It is great to have family who love us and go out of their way for us. That is another blessing for which so many of us can be grateful.

News about activities in France is good. Sometimes our absence is good as it stirs some who are reticent to step up to the plate. We miss the interaction with folks who need Christ in France but there are opportunities for displaying the light of Christ wherever He places us. We have had doors of opportunity opened to touch lives here in Evansville. You can ask our Heavenly Father to enable us to see what He wants us to be doing here in the present.

Thanks for your prayers and faithful support.

Serving with you,
John and Judy

Stateside Address
John and Judy Hatcher
1901 Shepherd Dr.
Evansville, IN 47715

Field Address
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France

Click here to donate to BFM.

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Missionary Update: John Mark & Judy Hatcher in France [December 2015]

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

December 4, 2015

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

May this find you enjoying the blessings provided by our Creator and Father. We have certainly seen God at work this month. We thank each of you who expressed your concern and who have prayed for us following the attacks in Paris. This along with the killings in the United States of America has dominated the news here. These events remind us that humanity is broken and that there is no hope outside of Jesus Christ. The events have opened doors of opportunity to talk about the hope that we have in Him.

Our Youth meeting the weekend after my last letter to you was very good. Our discussion was about God speaking to us in these last days by His Son and what we learn about God in Jesus. The majority of the 15 young people who were present are not Christians. They come because they have been befriended by the youth from the church who are Christians. It is very encouraging to see the missionary spirit in those who are saved.

We have also been blessed by a renewal of desire to serve in the members of our congregation. Last Sunday we spent the entire service presenting the outreach and disciple making activities. Several believers committed themselves to serve in Sunday school, youth meetings, home groups and other areas of ministry. This past month two prayer meetings and a college age Bible study that meet in homes during the week have been started and are going well.

We are very encouraged, as well, by the meetings in the city of Mazere.  A couple and a lady in the group have asked to host meetings in their homes so we are now meeting on a rotating basis in three different homes in this area.  It is great to see the participants taking ownership and showing concern for the salvation of their acquaintances and families.

This month Judy received her long term residents card. We have worked toward this goal for over ten years. Up to this time we have had to spend several days each year on the process of renewing our annual “visitor permits”. I received my long term residents card at the beginning of this year.

The Hatchers visited a museum where Douceline is chief staff.  (Left to Right: David, Pennie, Douceline, Judy)

The Hatchers visited a museum where Douceline is chief staff.
(Left to Right: David, Pennie, Douceline, Judy)

On Tuesday of this week David, my brother from Brazil and his dear wife Pennie arrived to spend a week with us. They were last here about 13 years ago. We have had a very enjoyable time visiting and talking about what God is doing around us.

Please continue to pray for Eva, the young mother that I mentioned in my last letter and for her husband. She has now been confined to bed in the hospital for two months to avoid an untimely delivery. She is thrilled that she has been able to witness to her doctor. I was even able to talk to him about our ministry here during one of our visits to the hospital. Her husband, who is also a believer works hard as an aeronautical engineer and they have a two year old son at home.

I am including a photo of our visit to a museum where Douceline is chief staff. She is the single lady who hosts our Bible study in Mazere and who in addition has a couple of evangelistic Bible studies with unsaved ladies.

Thank you for your faithful support and prayers. May God richly bless you, work in you where you are and provide for all of your needs.

Your fellow servants in France,
John and Judy

John and Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France

Click here to donate to BFM.

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Spring Conference 2013 [Tuesday Evening]

Our 53rd Annual Spring Conference continued this evening with Scripture-soaked messages, giving honor where honor is due, and words of encouragement.

The choir from Thompson Road opened with “Ancient Words,” followed by the congregation singing “Victory in Jesus.” ♪ Pastor Doug King then led us in prayer before we sang “Loyalty to Christ.” ♪ His Gospel we’ll proclaim, throughout the world’s domain, Of loyalty, loyalty, yes, loyalty to Christ. 

Pastor Mark Pyles sang “He’s All I Need” before the first message. 

Missionary John Hatcher, who has served 58 years in Brazil, brought the first message from the Psalms, but opened by singing a Portuguese song and all the Portuguese speakers joined in! (Something about being happy…”O yo something feliz.” Apologies from Phoebe who forgot to ask for a translation afterward.)

“I want the Scriptures to speak to you,” he said. “I’ll make my words few.”

Psalm 1 contains the perfect instructions for guiding your life as a Christian. The promises in it are overwhelming.

vs. 1- Happy is the man who walks in the right way, stands in the right place, and doesn’t sit in the wrong places.

vs. 2- 24 hours a day. Some of us our too lazy and too “busy” to meditate on God’s Word, but that’s the only thing that will last forever.

vs. 3- What a promise! Whatever I do as God’s child will prosper. God has obligated Himself to this promise if I meet the demands of the first part of the chapter.

If you want a successful life, do what He says. 

“This may be the shortest sermon I’ve ever preached at a conference,” he remarked, “but the words are eternal.”

Psalm 126 shows the secret of success in a life that is going to win souls.
Our job is to win souls to the Lord and they can’t be saved without hearing that Jesus died, was buried, and rose from the dead.

vs. 5- Another promise. Weep as you sow. We cry over the lost. We cry over their need. We cry over their destiny without Christ. It’s my job to sow the seed and weep over the lost. It’s Christ’s job to make it sprout. You have to plant the seed with care. There have been some tears, but you keep sowing.

When we have the opportunity to tell and we don’t, the blood is on our hands. We can’t pass that off.

If you want to be a soul-winner, you must understand Psalm 126.

Psalm 127– The Family
vs. 2- God works for us while we rest! He wants us to rest in Him.
vs. 3- CHILDREN are a heritage from the Lord. We often think of material possessions as a heritage, but it’s CHILDREN. “We always wanted 8 kids. We made it to 5–and if we had more like the 5 we had, we’d want at least 8.”

Psalm 128– Great Promises: When you honor Him, the family is the blessing.
The Hatchers have 5 children, 15 grandchildren, and 26 great-grandchildren. Every one of the grandchildren is serving the Lord in a special ministry. All 4 greats in France have trusted the Lord and they are trusting the rest will as well!

Psalm 127 & 128 pronounce blessings over the family. When you have godly families, you’ll have godly politicians, schoolteachers, workers, and bosses. When the family fails, all fails.

Take the Word in its simplicity.

♪ Close to Thee 

We had a special presentation to honor the exemplary and faithful service of four of our missionary families this evening.

  • John & Alta Hatcher – 58 years in Brazil
  • Harold & Marie Bratcher – 53 ½ years in Brazil
  • Bobby & Betty Creiglow – 33 years in Brazil
  • Harold & Ursula Draper – 32 ½ years in Brazil

They each received a plaque with their years of service and a message of thanks and 2 Timothy 2:2 at the bottom. (You can download a sample PDF here to see the text and generic design of the plaque.)

“And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” -2 Timothy 2:2

Pastor David Hatcher from Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil, then told the story of a little seed planted by BFM. He wanted to encourage us to be faithful and to show that our work has not been in vain–that our faith in what BFM missionaries were planting was not in vain. “Sometimes you get one of those genetically modified kernels,” he said. God determines the size as He uses us.

He shared a video about the history Chapada Baptist Church that was made to “gladden our hearts.” Chapada was the first church planted in Brazil by John & Alta Hatcher in 1960. Five years ago, they had 130 members. Now it’s grown to 5000 and they have planted 20 churches in Brazil and 4 churches in other countries (Venezuela, Mozambique, Peru, and British Guyana).

What you did will have eternal rewards and you’ll only find out about most of it when you get to Heaven. You may never know the extent of the work that you’re doing–only Heaven will tell. So do not grow weary.

“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” -Galatians 6:9

The seed is good seed, but there are some things we can do in planting the seed to make it more effective.

Six Things the Chapada Church has Focused On
First off, pastors need to get rid of fear. Figure out what God wants and do it regardless of what other people think. Think outside the church walls. 

1) The absolute top priority of the church & the Christian is to love God above all. It’s Jesus everywhere. Jesus in your job, in your sports, in your dating, in your marriage. (Deuteronomy 6:5)
The #1 way you love God: Obey. (John 14)
Sanctification involves learning to obey and learning to hear the voice of the Spirit. It takes commitment AND passion. Learn to praise God. (Psalm 89:15)

2) It’s the joy of the Lord that is our strength. 
-People need to WANT to go to church. Bring joy into your services because the JOY of the Lord is the strength of the Christian. It shouldn’t be an obligation. When we are full of joy, the burden of the Lord’s work becomes light. (Psalm 37:4)
-Study God’s Word collectively and individually. Every member is encouraged to spend 20-25 minutes per day in the Word 5 days a week. They memorize 5 or so verses a week and do Bible Study sheets. Not all 5000 do it, but 2000 do, and 2000 is better than no-thousand!
-Get people into the Word! How shall a young man keep His way pure? (Psalm 119:9) When you get people in the Word, it overflows in fruit (the best kind of fruit is souls). Stimulate the reading, studying, and memorization with rewards.
“When I was a boy, I read because my mother would let me go buy a toy as a reward at the end of a year. That got me in the habit of doing it, but that’s not why I do it now.”
-Everyone should be trained, not just the pastor.
As people serve and invest their lives, they’ll love the church and Jesus more. Where your treasure is… (Matthew 6:21) Don’t ask what the church can do for you.

3) Apply the theology to everyday life. Don’t assume people know what to do with the Word. (Matthew 7:24) Help them put it into their tennis shoes. The Bible is the manual of life.

4) Ministry is done by volunteers. The people do the work. When you’re invested, you can’t leave. God has given us intelligence, time, and energy–we turn these in to make money and buy material things, but don’t forget to invest in and buy eternal things. The average member at Chapada gives about 8-10 hours per week to the church.

5) Focus on loving one another.
Sometimes we emphasize the wrong things. Anything that is not going to make an eternal difference is the wrong thing. Focus on the right things. (1 John 3:16) MAKE PEOPLE FEEL LOVED. (John 13:34-35) Love is the best advertisement for your church. Bring gifts for people when you come to church–cards, candy, fruit. Leave messages on their phone. Send them texts of encouragement. (Sidenote: Instead of Facebook, get your face in the Book! But if you use Facebook, use it for the Lord and to encourage one another!)

6) Our Purpose: Give people the opportunity to respond to the Gospel.
1 Corinthians 9:24-26 Speak in a language that people understand. Consider everything as a divine appointment. When you’re filling up your gas tank, it’s a divine appointment. Invite the cashier to church–tell them how Jesus died for their sins.

He challenged us to rethink our methods. We must plant the seed in an effective way. Do not be weary. Do not be discouraged. Be creative.

We closed the evening session with ♪ Lord Speak to Me ♪

Tomorrow is the final day of the conference. We hope you can join us! [Schedule]

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