2008 has been a bitter sweet year which has brought to us a ministry moment where much of what we have dream of in church-planting multiplication has begun to take shape as well as a moment of great loss, when through a plain crash in Montana, Kelly, Erin’s brother went on to enjoy eternity on May 23rd. We got to see Kelly at the end of our furlough in Oct. 2007 and he called us frequently. We attended the funeral in Montana where we comforted by family, friends and our home church. Several supporting churches pitched in and helped cover the cost of our travel.
On November 15th both Camilla and Gabriel were baptized on a very cold day, in a pond at the RincÃ£o churh-plant along with five other people from the three churches. What a family celebration it was in the water after. There is nothing like baptizing your own kids. Thank you for your many prayers for our family. Both Gabriel and Camilla have clubs for their friends where they invite them over to play and have a snack with Bible study moments that they teach.
We met Eduardo and his family in 2007 during a storm while we sought shelter in the mountains near the Guarani tribe in Alto CaraÃ¡ about 90 minutes from GravataÃ. At that time we camped in his garage by the river and shared with him “The Story of Hope”. He put his trust in Jesus Christ in 2007 and we continued to visit his family in 2008 for discipleship through the chronological “Way to Joy” material. Pastor Geferson has taking the lead in this church-plant bringing the young RincÃ£o church into their first missions outreach. In evangelism, we have learned to return to the simplicity the redemptive narrative in scripture where we have seen people like Eduardo trust Christ and be baptized in the face of family persecution for his faith.
After two local tattoo artist trusted Christ (also through the biblical narrative), they helped us put together a visual walk through the Story of Hope burnt into eight leather panels representing the chronological bridge to life from ABWE (God-Man-Sin-Death-Christ- Cross-Faith-Life). We have taken this to into public schools and seen dozens of children understand and respond with faith in Jesus.
Thank you Lord for 2008, please lead us into 2009 toward whatever adventure you have for us. Amen. The Latham’s