Pastor Johny Stutzer, church planting secretary for the Evangelical Free Church of Brazil and an EFCA ReachGlobal Latin America ministry partner, feels fortunate that the flood damage to his church was relatively minimal.
Although the water rose to 4.5 meters (over 14 feet) in some parts of the church, a group of church members worked together to move everything to the second floor of the building just as the flooding began on September 8.
“We arrived in a poorer region… an entire neighborhood completely inundated with mud,” Johny writes.
His team from the church went to help at the home of an elderly widow, Leonora, and her daughter-in-law. They were trying to clean out their home and salvage whatever possessions they could.
“When we arrived with a team carrying brooms, squeegees, a submersible pump, and buckets, her eyes lit up and she said: ‘You are the church…I just went there!'” Johny writes.
“In the midst of our cleaning we talked, consoling her and offering counsel. [Leonora and her daughter-in-law] saw in our volunteers the Lord’s love as we worked,” Johny shares. “It was difficult to create a mountain of mud, furniture and personal items in front of her home — the ‘history’ of this woman — but she was impacted by our attitude.”
“In the middle of the afternoon, with everyone dirty, wet, and muddy, all of a sudden we were praying with her as she confessed her sins and asked Jesus to come into her life. A small home, with most everything destroyed by the flood, now had a new shine — the presence of God began a new work there because of the impact of the love of God in action.”
Keep up with the latest recovery efforts at www.touchglobal.org/brazil.
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- For Pastor Johny and his church as well as ReachGlobal missionaries who have traveled from Rio de Janeiro to help with the recovery efforts.
- That the people of Rio do Sul — an area that has been resistant to the gospel — would have their hearts and minds opened to the truth of the gospel.
- That not only the immediate physical needs but also the spiritual and emotional needs of the people would be met.
Make an online donation to Brazil flood relief efforts.