Multicultural Melting Pot with One Thing in Common

What could possibly unite Indian tribes, Haitians, the urban poor and upper class of São Luís and even a couple of Brits? It can only be the name of Jesus Christ. All of the above people groups, and more, joined together at the church’s missionary conference this month. There were talks and worship sessions over 5 days. We enjoyed meeting new people, hearing how the gospel is changing lives in many places and especially singing “How Great Thou Art” and “How Great is our God” in Portuguese, English and Guajajaras (language belonging to the tribe of the same name). A touching moment was when Pastor Sergio from our church announced the Sunday School had collected an offering for the youngest missionary. We were surprised to hear him call our Stephanie (at 6 weeks old)  to the front to receive the gift!

Obviously a conference like this costs money and the church did a few fundraising events to help with the costs, including a football tournament which was right up Daniel’s street.

Instituto Engrenar continues to move forwards with pace. We have another recruit with us from the “Casa de Davi” recovery house. Raílson has been a welcome volunteer with a great apt for welding, learning the bible and pitching in all round.

It’s always challenging to consider the perceptions and judgements we wrongly make of people. Ever since I first met some street kids at a drop in centre here, I was impressed by how polite and respectful they were (Mez probably had taught and warned them well, but even so!). All of the guys I meet from the recovery house are helpful, mannerly and friendly with the kids and I. They don’t hesitate to come over and carry bags or the car seat for me, are inquisitive about Scotland, play football with Antonio and get on just fine in day to day situations; the sad problem is just their vice. Drugs and alcohol destroy lives so easily, and often subtly, but we hope we can give guys like Raílson a second chance.

Raílson helped Daniel to make a table for the workshop and has helped both he and Pedro to make gates for another client and an extension to Daniel’s sister’s snack bar.

The workshop now has a staircase, has better access at the front with a proper pavement, and on Saturday we’ll have a group of people coming to paint.

We celebrated 7 years of marriage on 17th July with pizza with all the family! Our family has grown a bit over these years…

Thanks all- more news soon.

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