Waiting on the Lord of All

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.

March 24, 2020

Friends and family,

Well, hope this letter finds you well. We are doing as well as can be expected in these trying times. We are like all you all, trying to keep our head above water and wait to see what God is doing in the whole world.

This past month we have had a funeral of my half-brother and now have had to review our whole schedule. We had two weeks of classes in Brazil in March that we have cancelled and then two weeks in April that we have decided to cancel also. Two of the tickets were booked on Brazilian airlines so it is not like the airlines in the States. We do not know if we are going to get a refund, get to re-book or lose all the money for the tickets.

We were so looking forward to starting the new classes in Manaus and Porto Velho in state of Rondonia. The state of Rondonia is where the fires in the rain forest were so rampant last month. The first two classes in April were to be there, and in Manaus, we were beginning a whole new group of students. We were starting our Masters of Theology program: Systematic Theology and Survey of the Old Testament. These were to be taught by Dr. Derek Coleman and Dr. Raymond Edge. So, not only am I, but our professors are doing hotel and travel cancellations and rescheduling. Then there is the procedure of trying to contact all the students and decide when we can try to reschedule, not knowing when this virus will be over. These students are from 5 different cities in São Paulo, Campinas, Garça, and the new classes in Manaus and Porto Velho. Sometimes life gets put on hold and we wait on God to put it to right. So please pray for the students, as it is our plan to reach Brazil for Christ through these Pastors and Church workers. Also pray for the professors, translators, administrators and other class helpers.

As far as the town where this Seminary gets its roots, it, too, is shut down. The main road that comes down the mountain has been closed except for necessary traffic. This is where Pastor Walmir and Mary and the grandchildren live. So, you see this virus is affecting the whole world.

As for Barbara and I, we are in Florida as we were planning to fly from Florida to Brazil because we found cheap flights from there, so we are now hunkered down here. We can wait on the Lord in any place as He is the Lord of all, and He is in control. So, God bless you all as we together wait for the next step of God’s plan.

In His service,
Aj and Barbara

Aj and Barbara Hensley
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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Four Generations of Missionaries Together in Manaus

Jud and Raquel Hatcher serve the Lord in São Paulo, Brazil. They are part of the “SeedFactory” church planting initiative, which is a movement to plant churches in all 26 Brazilian capitals. Since 2006, 43 churches have been started in 5 states.

February 12, 2020

Dear Friends,

We are grateful for your prayers and generosity. Our family and ministries are blessed by you!

Our four children are in good health and doing well in school. Sarah is practicing softball, Laura is playing volleyball, Benjamin is engaged in soccer and basketball, and Melissa enjoys playing everything.

At the end of the year, we had a very special Christmas time at Maria Virginia Baptist Church. The neighborhoods near the building received a door-to-door Christmas cantata during the two weekends prior to Christmas.  Several guests visited us during services and attendance is increasing. Last week we received a couple that searched for us online and came to the main worship celebration.

Pastor Helder and family arrived in Sao Paulo on January 8th to assume leadership at Maria Virginia as the new senior pastor. Within the first month he visited most of the members at home and everyone is excited to have them in the fellowship and his encouraged by his leadership.

Our gatherings with Imagine are always full of laughter and filled enjoyable moments. People enjoy sharing life stories around our meals and prayer requests during small group meetings. We continue to gain momentum as more people arrive to do life together with us.

The children at Hope are always full of energy and excited to see us every time they see us. Contact with parents through the kids is ever increasing as the adults learn to trust us and seek our help in emotional and physical needs and on how to raise children.

For two weeks at the beginning of January, we traveled and stayed with my parents (Paul and Wanda Hatcher) in Manaus. (My parents were in Manaus for a short season to assist Tabernacle Baptist Church with transition.) We thoroughly enjoyed our time with them. This visit also gave us time with my grandfather John Hatcher (he is cared for by my parents).  We were also able to invest time with my uncles and aunts: David and Penny, and Odali and Kathy. We scheduled a photo op with a professional photographer to take our family portrait, with parents and Grandpa John. We took a great picture of four Hatcher generations in Brazil.

While in Manaus we visited several friends and churches. I had the privilege of preaching at Ativa Baptist Church in Manaus where Pastor Neto is pastor and at Pedras Vivas Baptist Church in Iranduba, where Odali Barros is pastor.

Please, continue to pray for us.

Grateful always,
Jud Hatcher

Judson & Raquel Hatcher
(859) 544-9040
judsonhatcher@gmail.com
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Seminary Stats for 2019

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.

November 20, 2019

Dear friends and family,

It has been an AWESOME month and one half for our Seminary. First of all, we have a new name. Because of the accreditation process there in Brasil, we have to have an American name. So, we are now Bluegrass Baptist Seminary. The students are having a good time discovering what bluegrass is.

I want to use this letter to give you a yearly report on our work in Brasil. The cumulative report provides impacts for the Seminary and preview of the upcoming work.

Here are the Seminary statistics through the Fall of 2019:

  • 32 classes, delivering 9 courses in 6 different cities since our beginning.
  • Total enrollment is 277 students including pastors, church leaders and missionaries.
  • Students are from 90 churches who have memberships of more than 10,011 people total
  • These Churches are located in 34 cities and in 5 States
  • 84 students have graduated with a certificate in Pastoral Ministries. This includes the first 4 courses: Systematic Theology, Survey of the New Testament, Survey of the Old Testament, and Pastoral Ministries
  • 51 students at 2 locations are enrolled in our Masters Program. We have students in São Paulo and Orlandia that are in the middle of their Masters courses and will continue these courses in 2020. There has been an increased interest in the Masters Program. HOW AWESOME is the Lord we serve!!
  • We have 3 new locations for classes in 2020: Ribeirao Preto in the state of São Paulo, Manaus in the state of Amazonas, and Porto Velho in the state of Rondonia. In Rondonia, we will be working with missionaries who work in missions established in the high jungle or North Western Brasil.

As planned in 2020, we are expecting to have an AWESOME year! It would be good to have you, our prayer warriors, praying for me and our Professors: Derek Coleman, Raymond Edge, Russell Zik, Terry Leap, Steven Scherer, and Greg Waltermire, as there will be much traveling this upcoming year. Also pray for the Churches of these pastors who send their pastors to help in this ministry. Without these Churches and these pastors, we would not have Bluegrass Baptist Seminary.

This ministry, Reaching Brasil, is made possible because of caring people like you giving to Baptist Faith Missions. Thank you for your generosity and your prayers.

Happy Holidays!

In His service,
Aj and Barbara

Aj and Barbara Hensley
ajcaragua[at]gmail.com
Like them on Facebook.

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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Bluegrass Baptist Seminary Spreads in Brazil

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 21, 2019

Friends and family,

This month has been more than busy. I will start with the end of the month and reconstruct it backwards.

Pastor Derek and I were invited to a Pastor’s conference in Goiânia, Brasil, where I was able to represent Bluegrass Baptist Seminary. This was an opportunity sent from God because we were trying to incorporate a visit to this area this year to spread the word about the Seminary. As a result, we were able to talk to representatives from six different churches. They are now going to send students to the Seminary in our location in Rebeirao Preto. This will be our first classes in August of 2020. This city is projected to be one of the permanent locations for Bluegrass Baptist Seminary. This is a very large city with an airport and in a central location to many cities. Pray for these new locations we are planning for the 2020 Seminary year.

The missionary conference in Goiânia, São Paulo.

Also this month we have put Manaus, Amazonas on our projected schedule for seminary classes. The invitation to Manaus came from the classes we are having in São Paulo, as some of the students had contacts in Manaus and spread the word about our classes. I have many friends there from language classes and work that I had done there for Pastor Paul and Wanda Hatcher.

This coming year promises to be a busy and productive one for the Seminary. Our plans are for being in Ribeiro Preto, São Paulo and Manaus, Amazonas as the new cities, and Campinas, São Paulo and São Paulo, São Paulo as the ongoing classes. With these four cities we will have eight different classes. Pray for all our professors and helpers. As you know our professors are Pastors here in the United States with their Dr’s and PhD’s and they are doing an AWESOME job. Because of their qualifications, they will help with our pursuit of accreditation for the Seminary. This is an AWESOME blessing.

My health issues continue to improve and I have an appointment in the coming weeks. Be in prayer for the latest results. I know that, as in all things, God is in control.

As you know, when you are trying to serve God, there are road blocks. My roadblock this month was on the road. Not literally, but I had an accident and totaled my car. The AWESOME news is that I escaped injury. Just a few bruises and minor scratches. Our God is an AWESOME God.

Just following up with Mary’s oldest daughter Chelsea, she went for a check-up last week and the Dr said that her spina bifida is getting better and she will not have to wear a brace. Prayer works!!! Continue to keep them in your prayers.

Please pray for Barb and I as we are going to be in Brasil for the month of October. Barb will go first to visit the grandchildren then to Garça with me for the first of three Seminary classes. Then I will finish the month in São Paulo and Campinas.

Thank you for your continued prayers for this endeavor for the Kingdom.
In His service,
Aj and Barb Hensley

Aj and Barbara Hensley
ajcaragua[at]gmail.com
Like them on Facebook.

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.
odali_kathy[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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Wherever We are is No Surprise to God

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 9, 2019

Dear Brother and Sisters,

It is a joy to know that our Saviour will never leave us nor forsake. His presence has been evident to us this month and I hope the same is true in your life. Thanks to all of you who have been praying for us and Judy’s sister, Peggy. Some of the difficult symptoms she had when we arrived have improved. There have been a battery of doctor appointments and we have been glad to be here to get her to these. We are now awaiting answers on options for treatments in University Medical Research Centers.

I had the privilege of being with Paul and Wanda and our father, John A. Hatcher, last week in Florida. They are all moving back to Manaus, Brazil, today. Your prayers for them as they seek to minister would be greatly appreciated. During my time with them in Central Florida we had great fellowship.

The Lord has opened up doors to visit and speak in supporting churches and I am enjoying these opportunities and times of fellowship. If you are interested in us coming to share what God is doing in France or to minister to your church in any way, it would be delighted. Contact us through the email listed above.

Peggy has a couple of Bible studies that meet in her home and we have enjoyed participating in these. News from France is good and the brothers and sisters in Christ show great concern for Judy’s sister. With long distance communication today, it is possible for us to continue part of our ministry.

But, wherever we are is no surprise to God and He brings across our paths those who need to know Christ or believers who need to be encouraged and are and encouragement to us. Judy and I like to do Nordic Trekking for exercise. Since we do this on neighborhood streets and in public parks it, opens up many doors of contact. It is a bit unusual to see trekkers around this part of the country so people stop and ask us about it and one thing leads to another and Jesus shows up on the scene!

May God bless you and use you as His light where you live!

Thankfully yours,
John and Judy Hatcher

John Mark & Judy Hatcher
JMHatcher[at]aol.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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New Opportunities in New Cities for the Seminary

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.

June 14, 2019

Friends and family,

It has been a very busy time at our house these past few weeks. We are completing our travel plans for July. Our trip for July is to Manaus to see if there is a need for our Seminary. As we are a traveling Seminary, we are in constant pursuit of another group of Pastors that would benefit from the learning more about the Bible. So, with that in mind, we have been in contact with various Pastors in Manaus. As a matter of fact, they contacted us. We will be meeting with them in July to discuss what we have to offer and to meet with them to begin to get to know them and to get to know their needs.

They have asked us to participate in a Pastors Conference in July with them where Pastor Derek Coleman will be one of the keynote speakers. They have conveyed to us the desire of 30 to 50 people to participate in the Seminary and think that after Pastor Derek speaks in July that that number will increase. God is AWESOME!!!!!!

During this trip we will be going to another state named Rondonia. The people have promised us two things for certain there and that is that it will be very humid there. Also, that they are very excited to meet with us and talk about having our Seminary there in the town of Cubia. Just as I always say, “What an AWESOME God we serve.”

Last month we went to visit the church where Pastor Sheridan and Anita are serving. We talked with them about the Seminary and how God is using it to educate the Pastors and the church workers there in Brasil. It was a good time getting reacquainted with old friends.

Also last month I was presenting our work about the Seminary one Sunday night with the mission committee also speaking about a mission trip to Brazil. I believe that every church should have people from their church go on a foreign mission trip because I believe that such a trip broadens their vision and commitment for missions.

As we entered the sanctuary, we were greeted by Odali and Kathy Barros who were also visiting Heritage. After church we went to have coffee and catch up with each other. You see, though we both serve in Brasil, it is rare to see them in Brasil. As we talked, we took the opportunity to invite Odali to be the translator for the planned upcoming Seminary classes in Manaus. Please make that a prayer request for us.

After July we will be back in Lexington, Kentucky for a couple of months and have some time to visit your church and tell you all about what God is doing through us and because of you and your support. If you have asked us and we have not gotten back to you, please reach out to us again. Both Barbara and I feel like we have not responded to someone and that is not our wish to forget anyone.

We will be back in Brasil in September and October for the next Seminary classes in the city of São Paulo and the city of Campins, along with classes in Garça, São Paulo. Please for these five classes and their professors and students.

As in all cases, I want to commend our professors for giving of their time and talent, and not forgetting their churches who allow them to participate in the education of our Brasilian Pastors. As you know, our professors are PhD’s and Dr’s and this is helping us in the accreditation process for the Seminary. We have been doing a lot of paperwork to get the accreditation in Brazil but to do this we had to give the Seminary an American name. We put much thought into this new name and finally settled on one. Our new name is BLUEGRASS BAPTIST SEMINARY. Continue to pray for us and the Seminary as we work to advance God’s kingdom in Brazil and wherever God leads.

The month of June I have become one year younger and I give God the glory. My health seems to be going good except for the occasional pain. Pray with us as we pray that this is not a problem. But above all I just want to say, “WHAT AN AWESOME GOD WE SERVE.”

In His service,
AJ and Barb

Aj and Barbara Hensley
ajcaragua[at]gmail.com
Like them on Facebook.

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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Missionary Update: Paul & Wanda Hatcher in Brazil [November 2014]

Paul and Wanda Hatcher have been serving the Lord together in Brazil since 1974. Paul pastors Tabernacle Baptist Church in Manaus, Brazil. Their main ministry is church planting.

Paul and Wanda Hatcher have been serving the Lord together in Brazil since 1974. Paul pastors Tabernacle Baptist Church in Manaus, Brazil. Their main ministry is church planting.

November 01, 2014

Dear Friends,

Blessed be the one and only true God and Father, our Lord Jesus Christ. The Scripture says, “Rejoice in the Lord and again I say rejoice;” and certainly, this is a great way to start each new day granted to us by our loving and gracious Heavenly Father. God’s provision is always good and appropriate for each situation that comes our way – great reason to praise and rejoice in our Lord Jesus Christ.

I enjoyed a great trip to Brazil! Last letter, I was seated in the airport in Panama waiting for my fight connection to Manaus. About six hours later that night I debarked at the Manaus airport. Our son, missionary Judson, along with his wife, Raquel, and four children were there to receive me. I stayed at their house the first half of my stay. On arriving at their house, our son-in–law, Pastor Michael, and wife, Leigh Anne, and two children were waiting. Many hugs and kisses – wonderful to be with each of them – short visit – as it was late and the children had school early the next morning. I saw our daughter, Michelle, after her shift at the children’s hospital, and her son after school. The last days, I stayed at Michael and Leigh Anne’s house. Both Judson and Michael were great hosts. It was certainly great to see them all and hear and see how God is working in each of their lives.

The churches in north and northeastern Brazil are doing well. Tabernacle Baptist Church in Manaus has been doing remodeling of the Sunday school rooms. The church is hoping to complete the project by the end of October. It’s looking very nice and will be more usable and energy efficient. Energy cost in all Brazil is very high but especially expensive in Manaus. Pastor Michael Samples, our son-in-law, is doing the teaching and leading the church in our absence and is doing a great job.

Pastor Ivanildo Ross is visiting the new churches in the northeast to encourage them and help them with various issues. Some have not been able to complete their incorporation process in order to transfer the church facilities to each organized church. The legislation is complex, and often confusing, making it a challenge and, sometimes, reason for discouragement. The churches are doing well and growing despite the challenges. Pastor Ivanildo has been encouraged by the commitment and love the pastors have for the work of the Lord. The time in Brazil was productive and encouraging. I thank each of you who pray for God’s work in Brazil. Thank you indeed. God is answering the prayers.

Therefore, as recorded in the Scriptures, “I encourage first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings, presidents and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. There is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, for which I was appointed a preacher.”

Thanks again for your prayers and generous support to the work of missions in Brazil; may God be your great reward. We pray for you that your remembrance and knowledge of our Lord, the only true God, may abundantly increase in wisdom and discernment, that your trust and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ may be steadfast always, and that the love of his Holy Spirit may fill and overflow in your every word and action, with thanksgiving to God though Jesus Christ our only Lord and Life.

Love,
Paul and Wanda

Paul and Wanda Hatcher
rphatcher[at]gmail.com
15905 Mercott Court
Clermont, FL 34714
(239)227-6551
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