Last month we asked prayer for the diocesan youth camp in Northern Argentina. We’ve now heard that God touched many hearts and ten youngsters accepted Christ as Lord and Saviour. Thank you for your prayers! The impact has been beyond expectation; let’s praise God for his might and goodness and let’s also pray for the follow-up in the local churches.
Four hundred and forty people squeezed into the main hall in the Jethro Centre for Friday Night Live; it was standing room only by 7:30pm. Highlights of the evening included a reunion between Edmeia Williams from Brazil and Archbishop Robin Eames. In 1998 Lord Eames visited Edmeia in the Dona Marta favela of Rio de Janerio.
Retired Bishop of Paraguay, John Ellison and his wife Judy, shared about their 30 years of work in South America. Dr Dickie Barr reported on a successful Love for Life trip, and the Trews emotionally shared how the family moved from Paraguay back to Northern Ireland.
The dynamic evangelist and church leader from Chile, Alf Cooper, gave the keynote address on the need to share the gospel, and training all members of the church to be a witness for Christ. He also introduced Samuel Lago who is spending a year in All Saints Parish in Belfast.
Titch and Cecilia reported on the excellent work carried out by SAMS volunteers in Salta and welcomed Pamela who is spending a year in Annaghmore Parish.
Bishop Ken Clarke finished the evening by praying for all those who will be going on mission over the next year, including the nationals from South America working in Northern Ireland.
It was another exciting night, encouraging to see so much interest in the work of mission in South America, Spain and Portugal. Thank you to all who helped out, and for everyone who came on such a wintry night.
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Carnaval begins on Saturday and in Recife, Brazil, Josias de Souza and a team led by Saulo from Espirito Santo church will be doing evangelism alongside Youth with a Mission (YWAM). Pray for them and against the powers of darkness that Carnaval can unleash. And nearby in Olinda three churches are planning to take a group of vulnerable people to the Living Waters Institute (formerly Emanuel Farm) for a time away from Carnaval and its influence.
The February Prayer news for Northern Argentina has also just arrived.
Last week the diocesan youth-camp for urban parishes took place in the ‘La Caldera’ conference-centre. 73 youngsters enjoyed an action-packed programme that revolved around the theme of ‘Mission-service’…Despite an improvised programme, God touched many hearts and some ten youngsters accepted Christ as Lord and Saviour.
The Northern part of the Salta-province is suffering from major flooding again. Already some 9 000 indigenous and criollos have been evacuated and 30 tons of aid is being flown in by plane and helicopter.
Paraguay has again been put on a Dengue Fever alert. There have been 150 suspected cases of the mosquito-born disease this year. In 2007 an epidemic of Dengue caused 27,000 cases and 17 deaths. A number of SAMS Mission Partners caught the disease last year. Anyone who has had Dengue before is more at risk of the more dangerous form of dengue haemorrhagic fever or dengue shock syndrome. Please pray for our mission partners health at this time.
The full story is on the BBC website.
Friday Night Live Pray for all those travelling to Friday Night Live on the 1st February. It’s one of the biggest nights and most overseas visitors we have ever had. There will be a lot of preparations over the next week.
Health Please remember in prayer Bishop Bill & Judith Godfrey of Peru who came to the UK just before Christmas for Bill to convalesce after a series of operations. Bill is far from well and was expecting to go back into hospital here for an extended period. Judith is very tired, so please hold them and their family up to the Lord.
Camps In Peru itself the first of three diocesan youth camps begins tomorrow (Thursday) in Lima, finishing on Monday. Paul Tester has been helping organise these camps. Pray that God would reach out to many young people through them. The others are held next month.
Chaplaincy Also tomorrow interviews are held in Warwick for a chaplain to replace Peter Jordan in Barcelona after he retires on 31 March. Pray for a person of vision and team leadership qualities to be found for the post.
Threats to churches In the same part of the world Sue Woodcock has been shocked to learn that ”several Protestant churches in Catalunya are under threat of closure by local authorities for what would seem to be trumped-up reasons. This is a very worrying trend”, writes Sue, “and it’s astonishing that it should happen under democracy!” She asks us to pray for this situation and for our brothers and sisters there.
The SAMS Ireland General Council met in Dublin on Monday 21st January for prayer and discussion on the future direction of SAMS. Titch put together a discussion document looking at the core values of SAMS, it was used to spark creative thinking and ideas on sharpening focus and prioritising. The council will pray over the ideas and discussions and meet again on Monday 10th March to draft a new SAMS Ireland vision and plan for the next three years.
Bishop Andrés Rodríguez who, following Bishop John Ellison’s retirement, has oversight of the Diocese of Paraguay until the appointment of a new diocesan bishop. Bishop Andrés is extremely busy with all the extra responsibilities and this is the hottest part of the year. Pray for him and his wife Estela, and also for the procedures to appoint a successor to Bishop John. A vote could be taken at a diocesan synod in March.