Dear Prayer Team,
Greetings from warm, humid south Brazil!!! It is summer vacation time here! After having our traditional family time on Christmas morning, if was so nice that we decided to celebrate the day as many Brazilians do and have a cookout/picnic. John’s mother was able to be with us this year, as she is getting ready to leave for her furlough in the States beginning January 20th. Our short-termer from Grace Baptist Church in Chariton, Iowa, Bekah Hendricks, was also here for Christmas and will be staying through March. She loves snow, so it was hard for her to hear about all the snow in Iowa that she was missing. We were trying to dream up ways to make her Christmas “white,” (throwing popcorn in the air, spreading corn starch around…etc.), but decided against those. We think she enjoyed the picnic, though. She has made some good friends down here–in fact a couple of them are here from Fortaleza visiting her right now so we have a full house!! We are enjoying the extra visitors, as it is nice to have help with the ministry and also at home.
The last time we wrote we were gearing up for our Christmas program at Gato Preto, and we are glad to report that it went well…all except for the stormy downpour RIGHT at the end as John was wrapping up the Christmas message. Even the tarp that we had put up before the meeting did not keep the strong winds and rain from dampening the crowd, and we ended up quickly running for cover in the small home where we meet. There we enjoyed a time of refreshments, gift distribution (small sacks of candy for the kids and devotional books for the adults), and also inspirational special music with Orlando and Lourdes, a dear couple that has been helping us. Even though the program did not go as we had planned, it was a blessing to hear one lady say at the end that this was the best Christmas she had ever had! Also, since that night, a lady named Rose and her two children have not missed a meeting. She hasn’t accepted Christ as her Savior, but we sense she is very close to making this decision. Please pray for her salvation.
Besides our work at Gato Preto, John has had the opportunity to speak at various churches and also at a camp for Chinese adolescents. (pictured below) How awesome it has been to see the Lord work each time He opens the Word of God!
Our prayer requests are as follows:
-For Rose and others who need to be saved.
-For a place for our group in Gato Preto to meet–our land issue was put on hold until February, but a couple other options have come up.
-For our up-coming VBS in Gato Preto. (salvation of children)
-For the Carnaval events planned (retreats, special meetings…) in February.
Thank you for your prayers!!
Sincerely in Christ,
John and Bev Leonard