Missionary Update: Jud & Raquel Hatcher Stateside from Brazil [December 2015]

Jud and Raquel Hatcher serve the Lord in Manaus, 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.

Jud and Raquel Hatcher serve the Lord in Manaus, 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.

December 14, 2015

Dear friends,

I recently received an email from a student, who had an assignment from his Christian School teacher to write about an overseas missionary. His great questions led me to include them here with my answers.

  1. Can you tell me a little about what you do in Brazil? I see from the Baptist Faith Missions website that you are part of the “Seed Factory” church planting initiative – can you tell me about that? How many churches have you planted?
    I am a pastor, church planter, professor and pastor trainer in Brazil. I’ve participated in 24 church plants. My first church plant was in 1998, alongside me were 7 pastors-in-training. In one year we saw 320 people professed Christ and 285 of them were baptized. The “Seed Factory” is the concept where every church produces “seed” for sowing and heavily focuses on reproducing leadership and sends out as many church planters as possible. My wife (Raquel) and I have four children – Sarah, Laura, Benjamin and Melissa.
  2. Can you please tell me a few prayer requests you have so me and my classmates can pray for you?
  • I am currently recuperating from a fractured fibula and a damaged Achilles tendon.
  • Government instability in Brazil.  The president is currently under an impeachment process for corruption.
  • Economic vulnerability in Brazil. A year ago the Brazilian Real (currency’s name) was 2.35 for every 1 US Dollar. Within the last few months it has risen past BR$ 4.00 / US$ 1.00.
  • Our children’s English and schooling.
  1. What challenges have you faced in Brazil and what changes have you had to make to your life to be a missionary in Brazil?
  • I was held hostage by five armed thieves in a travel bus while traveling in Northeastern Brazil. An armed police officer was in the bus as well. There was gun fire exchange, with 1 dead and 5 wounded. Four of the wounded persons were sitting near my seat. Now, I try not to travel by bus at night.
  • Two men (one was a pedophile who received church discipline the week before) attempted a force entry into my home as I stood at the door. Since then, cameras were installed at every point of entry of our home.
  • Month-to-month financial support.
  1. When do you start your mission work in Brazil and how long have you been there?
    I am a third generation missionary in Brazil. My grandparents (John & Alta Hatcher) arrived in Brazil in the early 1950’s and my parents (Paul & Wanda Hatcher) arrived in the early 1970’s. I was born and raised in Manaus. I am a dual citizen (American and Brazilian), bilingual (fluent in English and Portuguese) and am also bi-cultural.

    My family and I are on a one year furlough/state-side assignment. I am currently serving as visiting professor / adjunct faculty at Liberty University’s School of Divinity in Pastoral Leadership.

    As stated earlier, I began my ministry in Brazil in 1998. I have served as a missionary support worker & as missionary through Baptist Faith Missions since 2003.

    When we return to Brazil in July 2016, we plan to start churches in Sao Paulo city. Sao Paulo is the 7th largest city in the world with 29 million people. We plan to start churches throughout region of the subway system. The subway has a network of 67 stations and services 4.9 million people every day.

  1. What are some interesting things about Brazil that my classmates and I might not be able to learn from doing research online?
    Watch this video on YouTube concerning Sao Paulo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A3pBJTTjwCM

    You can find all kinds of interesting info by searching on the internet for the Brazilian cities. Here are a few: Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Manaus, Joao Pessoa, Joao Pessoa, cidade de Natal, Boa Vista, Macapa, Porto Velho, Londrina, Curitiba, Porto Alegre, Recife, Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Palmas, Rio Branco, Campina Grande, Teresina, Sao Luiz & Campinas.

    There is a lot of research & census info at: www.ibge.gov.br/english.
    You can also find me on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/judsonhatcher

  1. I see that your wife, Raquel, is a Brazilian.  Has that helped your ministry in Brazil?  Describe any extra challenges you face.
    Yes, the fact that my wife is a Brazilian is a major advantage for doing ministry together. She holds a doctorate in clinical psychology from an American university. So, our American education and connections open a lot of doors. Essentially, what an American pastor/family is to a successful church plant in the United States, we are in Brazil.

    The greatest challenge was getting Raquel’s American citizenship. It was only on May 19, 2015 that she finally received her American citizenship, despite being married for 17 years. Now, all of us have dual citizenship. All this time, she was an US “Permanent Legal Resident”, but every time she traveled she endured 4 to 5 hours of waiting at the airport and was threatened to be deported once. Later, we received a letter of explanation from immigration services stating they had lost her documents/file internally, thus complicating our life. Thankfully, these years of extra legal costs and travel frustrations are over.

Grateful,
Jud Hatcher

Furlough Address:
216 Mill View Ln
Lynchburg, VA 24502
(859) 608-4742
judsonhatcher@gmail.com
Website | Twitter | Facebook
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Missionary Update: Jud & Raquel Hatcher in Brazil [December 2012]

Jud and Raquel Hatcher serve the Lord in Manaus, 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.

Family
We’ve had a great month with the family. Just two weeks ago Melissa gave her first steps on her own. It was a tremendous joy to see her walk and watch her excitement in response to our enthused reaction. We celebrated her 1st birthday on December 1st. Sarah, Laura and Benjamin are on school break and are gearing up their bikes to go to the park whenever they get a chance.

Evangelistic Cookout
This last month we had an Evangelistic cookout with 72 guests on a holiday called “day of the deceased.” We had fantastic opportunities to share the Gospel. Before eating I preached concerning the resurrection of Christ and our new life in Him. Secondly, we shared individually as we ate with our friends. One man came to Christ. I’ve also had the chance to meet weekly with a couple as a result of the connection made that day.

Christmas Evangelism Camp
We scheduled a Christmas camp on December 15 & 16. We already have several families signed-up and look forward to an exciting and fun time with our unsaved and unchurched friends. Please, pray as we make preparations for the camp and for the hearts of those who will hear the Word.

Their latest Evangelistic Cookout had 72 guests.

Christmas Gift Baskets
This week we begin making our Christmas gift baskets and visiting peoples’ homes to present them with a basket and the Christmas message. It’s much easier to visit people with whom a previous contact has already been made, as opposed to “cold turkey” visits. We’ve made many new contacts through cookouts and other gatherings. We hope to make a lasting impact through this simple gesture of love.

The current members of Ativa gathered for the Lord’s Supper.

Mens’ Fishing Trip
In January we will have a men’s fishing trip. We will leave on a Friday and return on Saturday. We will spend the night at a local lodge. Many of our unchurched friends are already inviting their friends to join us. The Gospel message is always clearly announced at everything we do together. Pray for salvation decisions during this fishing trip.

Thanks
Thank you for you prayer and support. Please, continue to invest and pray as we work together until Christ’s second coming.

Grateful,
Jud & Raquel Hatcher
judsonhatcher@hotmail.com
Website | Twitter

Click here to give now.

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Missionary Update: Jud & Raquel Hatcher [October 2012]

Jud and Raquel Hatcher serve the Lord in Manaus, 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.

October 5, 2012

THANKFUL HEART
Thank you for your faithful prayers and investing in missions.

Thank you Bro. David Pitman & Addyston Baptist Church, Addyston, OH for
taking us on for support. Thank you also to Atlantic Shores Baptist Church,
Virginia Beach, VA; Friendship Baptist Church, Bristol, VA; New Hope Baptist
Church, Dearborn Heights, MI; Darwin & Cathy Smith, Lexington, KY; and Ron
& Judy Logan, Lexington, KY. WE ARE TRULY GRATEFUL!! Now, let me tell you about family news and some exciting moments of our latest church plant.

FAMILY DETAILS
Everyone is doing well. Sarah is 7 years old and studies hard on her math. Laura is 6 years old and is reading and writing amazingly. Benjamin is 4 years old, is learning to read and knows all of his numbers. Melissa is 11 months old and has 4 little teeth. At times, Raquel and I feel overwhelmed with family and ministry, but wouldn’t change a single moment of God’s plan for us.

CHURCH PLANTING: INITIAL PLANNING
On January 7, 2012 two couples, a lady, Raquel, the children and I went on a
van ride to pray and discuss where the Lord would lead us to start a church in
Manaus. I invited each one to make a personal commitment to join us and plant
a church. Everyone in the van that day committed wholeheartedly to start a
new church. The following weeks were filled with excitement as we visited six
different churches on Sundays and met from 5:00pm until 7:00pm to pray, study,
brainstorm and plan. During this time we also selected our name – Ativa: Uma
Igreja Batista (Active, a Baptist Church).

EVANGELISTIC COOKOUTS
During the weeks to come we organized several cookouts in homes where family
and friends were invited. Our contact list grew tremendously. Our fifth event was
a one-day camp where 95 people participated. Several people heard the Gospel
and made decisions.

MEETING AT HOME
Our first Sunday service was March 18, 2012 and met at our home. We had no
music, but the great food led to tremendous fellowship. A sense of belonging
began to grow amongst the team members, the newly saved and the unsaved
attendees. Excitement grew every week as people asked questions and decisions
were made. By the end of April, we had 30 people attending our home services.
During this period a member of the congregation asked “Where should I give
my tithe?” It is worth noting, we did not have a specific moment for tithes and
offerings during the service. We didn’t have a treasurer either. That week we
selected a treasurer and a vice-treasurer, and a box was placed on a corner table
during Sunday services. Those who attended began to give generously, even
though we never spoke of the matter. Six weeks latter we purchased a simple
sound system, three microphones, an acoustic guitar and a two-tone percussion instrument. With low monthly expenses our new congregation was able to save towards what the Lord was about to do.

BUILDING QUEST

Children singing on Sunday (building still under retrofitting)

In May, we began to search for a building to lease. We wanted a building on an
easy to find street, with good visibility. As we looked around the city we ran into
a serious problem – the outlandish cost of rental property. The reason? Manaus
is a host city for the World Cup 2014 and buildings are now exponentially
expensive to lease and/or purchase. Our small budget only allowed us to commit
to $1,000/mo and we needed a location to accommodate at least 150 people
(projecting growth over the next years). The cheapest we could find was $7,500/mo and with little to no parking. I even found a place that could accommodate 200 people and had six parking spaces for $15,000/mo. That’s right, fifteen thousand per month! And yes, that is the cost in US currency. To put the price absurdity into full perspective: the minimum wage in Brazil is currently at US$297.00/mo. Not encouraging… but we sure prayed and searched.

Despite the challenges, the Lord blessed! He gifted us with a small warehouse
to seat 140 people, with two small rooms, and a bathroom. The location is on
one of the main throughways of the city. Guess how much? Yes, $1,000/mo.
Unfortunately, it only has one parking spot. Yet again, the Lord blessed us.
Around the corner, within a hundred yards we found a walled parking lot for 30
cars! We met with the congregation and agreed to lease the lot at $25/Sunday.

BAPTISMS, ORGANIZATION & RETROFITTING
On August 12, 2012 we baptized 13 people (including our daughters Sarah
and Laura) and were organized with 37 members through Tabernacle Baptist
Church. It was an exciting Sunday for us all. We continued to meet at our home
while retrofitting the warehouse for services. Everyone came to help scrape the
old paint of the walls, repair the roof, clean, paint, and install doors and curtains.
Tabernacle Baptist Church donated the needed metal and the welder to build
and install a sign for on the front of the building.

Church building inauguration night with 102 people (84 adults and 18 children)

BUILDING INAUGURATION
On September 23, 2012 we had our inaugural service and kicked off a six-week Evangelistic message series. That evening we had 102 attend (84 adults
and 18 children). The Lord also gave us two salvation decisions that evening.
On the second week a tropical storm hit hard, and most of our invited guests
stayed at home. Despite the downpour of rain, we still had 63 attend and one
reconciliation. Pray for us this coming Sunday, it’s our third week.

PRAYER
Please, invest time in prayer for all of those who will need discipleship. Also,
pray for each one of us to continue in good health. Consider coming to visit us in
Brazil. And, continue to give generously to missions.

Grateful,
Jud & Raquel Hatcher
judsonhatcher@hotmail.com
Website | Twitter

Click here to give now.

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