Saying Farewell to São Luís Church
In April, our team sent our first church plant off on its own as a mature church. Praise God! My overwhelming feelings this month have been gratitude to God, for growing leaders in the church and for blessing it with health. It’s not a feeling of success, but simply amazement at how God has worked. Of course, it is a lot more complicated than reaching some measurable point of maturity. We see a lot of growth needed still – a lot. But the truth is, they no longer need us walking alongside them day by day. They need this chance to grow and become independent. We will visit and encourage and mentor the leaders, but our presence on a weekly basis is no longer needed.
The church on send-off Sunday, April 26
We have been working with the São Luís church since its inception in 2012. It had a difficult start with some unhealthy leadership. Our team tried for months to find mature Christians to walk alongside in leading the church, but eventually began working with four youth, mentoring them into leaders. Last year, God also raised up three mature and godly families within the congregation and brought a fourth from Luanda. These men and women have added great stability to the church.
Praise God with us for the men and youth God has raised up to lead the church!
Our team has invested heavily these past months in mentoring the leaders for this change. Robert taught a series on giving and Danny met with the church leaders each week. Katie and Teague mentored two women in Bible teaching and leadership and commissioned them with a blessing this last week as they continue in their ministry.
Please pray for São Luís in these specific areas:
- Trust in God to become financially independent – they still rely on support from Luanda for their preacher’s salary.
- Praise that the church has bought land in the neighborhood. Pray for them to be able to build a building healthily.
- Pray for them to maintain a focus on leading people to a true relationship with Christ.
- Pray for the men that are leading the church (see above picture). Top row: John, Mias, Paulo, Gidi, César, André, and Pedro. Kneeling: José and Troquanto.
- Pray for the women that are leading: Adelaide and Margarita, as they teach, and Nanda as she leads the children in worship.
- Pray for God to convict someone to teach the children.
Our team will now focus on a new church planting effort among the urban educated class… but we’ll tell you more about that in a future email. Thanks for your continual prayers of support!
Katie for our family
See Katie’s facebook for more pictures of our time with São Luís.
Katie with Adelaide, the preacher’s wife and a dear friend