Bill & Imogene BurkVila Cabanos
Dave & Kim Johnson
Andrew, Matthew, Karina, Daniel
On loan from Crossworld
Amazon Valley Region
Wayne & Ellen Patton
Amazon Valley Region
Bruce & Lisa Triplehorn
The Great Commission is to make disciples, without which it is impossible to plant and develop dynamic churches. Although up to 30 percent of the population is considered “evangelical”, there are very few disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ. Many so-called churches have focused on drawing in numbers through entertaining music and programs and promises of blessings and prosperity.
Even among our Grace Brethren Churches and other groups that teach the Word, there is a tremendous need for discipleship. Some of our newer churches started out with a strong foundation for discipleship, but gradually have neglected this essential element of the church and begun to focus on weekly meetings.
A group of men committed to making disciples has been meeting for the past four years to bring our fellowship of churches back to a focus on this important ministry. They call themselves “The Firm Foundation Group” (discipleship through the Word being the firm foundation). This group meets together monthly for encouragement, prayer, and planning and weekly for prayer. They are committed to training others in one-on-one discipleship.
The vast Amazon basin has more than 30,000 communities. Most of them are isolated, and very few have any gospel witness. Dave and Kim Johnson (missionaries on loan from Crossworlds) and Wayne and Ellen Patton have moved to Cotijuba Island near Belém to establish a beachhead to reach out to the river communities near Belém. Their goal is to mobilize believers from various Grace Brethren churches to reach more distant communities. They have started a kids’ club on the island that is being run by various teams of youth from different churches.
The Triplehorns are living in Uberlândia and working with church planters. They are developing a training center for equipping and sending out new leaders to make disciples and plant churches. Bill and Imogene Burk have done church planting and discipleship along the Amazon River for 58 years and will be concluding their service in May 2013.
- Pray our churches would focus on discipleship as foundational for the church.
- Pray the Firm Foundations Group would be effective in mobilizing people for discipleship and church planting.
- Pray for the mobilization of Brazilians to reach villages along the Amazon River.
- Developing strong marriages is becoming more of a priority.
- More people are doing evangelistic Bible studies and discipling others.
- There are between 30,000 and 50,000 communities in the Amazon basin with no gospel witness.
- There are Grace Brethren Churches in five of Brazil’s 26 states.
- There are 36 Grace Brethren Churches and 34 Points of Light.
- Twenty-three of the Brazilian points of light are the result of the outreach of three churches: Castanhal, Nova União, and Santa Luzia.
- Help encourage believers through youth training, Bible material, women’s retreats, and other “seed-watering” ministries.
- Watch videos about the Patton's ministry or visit the Patton's blog.
- Support mentoring of Brazilian leaders.
- Check out Bruce Triplehorn's book: Worship: the Golden Thread.
- Interested in going? Check out the Opportunities Database - over 70 ministry possibilities from around the world!