The Many Hats I’ve Worn

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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.

April 24, 2023

Dear friends and family,

As I look back over the past years in Brazil, I think of the many hats I have worn. In the beginning, my hat was just helper to Aj and to Kathy with the children. Then we purchased the building where we all assumed the care of one corridor with all the children decided. At this time, my hat was that of mother and all we moms know that a mom wears MANY hats. First is the caregiver and the one who gives the love to all. There is the nurse hat when one of your ten to fifteen boys is sick and you sit up all night rocking him. Also, the nurse when the boys get into fights and you are left to give out Band-Aids to all. One of my hats was a water carrier hat. That is when you call them to get up for school and they sleep right through it, so I guess that hat is the firefighter hat because the water somehow gets on the sound sleepers.

Then there was the was the wash woman hat on wash day when you gather up dirty clothes for all of the boys and begin wash day. Some days the biggest part was washing on the scrub board their “million dirty socks”. Then the pile in the living room floor to fold and separate their clothes. Also, the confidant hat where you get to give advice and hope and pray that they will listen and obey.

For the first five years, those and many more were my hats. Then we moved to another location where we were working to begin another orphanage, but the town we chose did not want Americans taking care of their children because they did not want people to think they were not doing a good job. I was Sunday School teacher, neighborhood all-around listener and adviser. So, because we could not get permission from the politicians we were forced to move to another location.

Here I stepped right into the role of youth leader and also young children teacher. The church where we began helping had a large children’s ministry and there, I fit right in and worked with the children in the church and outside of the church. So, when we started our last church, I worked in the women’s ministry and the children’s ministry.

So, as you can see, God has used me in all kinds of areas, but what is so interesting is when I look back on my own childhood and youth, I see how He was preparing me to be the wife of a missionary and to do all the things He brought me to.

My life has been a full and fulfilling one and I have enjoyed every twist and turn. I could not think of not having done any part of it. I give thanks to God for every part of it. And I look forward to everything He will bring to me to do in the future. As Aj would say, “WHAT AN AWESOME GOD WE SERVE!!!”

Thank each and every one of you who pray for Aj and I and for the ones who financially support through Baptist Faith Missions. Without your faithful support we could not do all that you enable us to do.


In His service,
Aj and Barbara Hensley


AJ & Barbara Hensley
30524 Mimi St
Sebring, FL 33870-0530
AJ: 859-539-2302 | Barbara: 859-539-1424

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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