Local Missionaries in Brazil
Of the 89.5 percent of the population that identifies as Christian, 75.9 percent are Roman Catholic, and much of Brazil’s Catholicism consists of syncretistic practices due to the historical influence of tribal religions from African slaves and Brazil’s indigenous peoples. The ethnic religions of these tribal people and syncretistic Catholics often include some form of spiritism involving belief that spirits temporarily inhabit physical bodies through successive incarnations toward moral and intellectual improvement. Spiritism also asserts that spirits may inhabit things to influence the material world for good or evil.
All evangelical work assisted by Christian Aid Mission is geared toward tribal people who practice the traditional ethnic religions. Many people in this segment of the population are found in the 209 unreached people groups.
Evangelical faith has grown substantially in the past decade, thanks in large measure to the work of native missionaries. One indigenous ministry supported by Christian Aid Mission has planted churches throughout several states of Brazil. Providing medical services and education to desperately poor people in isolated jungle villages, local missionaries seek donations to travel to new unreached areas. Another local ministry requests assistance to send and support native missionaries to an area where there is no evangelical presence.
Leaders of several ethnic groups in Amazon regions request training in community development as a means for planting churches in unreached areas. Support is also needed for a ministry that is translating the New Testament into a local tribal language, and local missionaries building a Bible training center along the Amazon River seek funding to help meet the growing demand for trained pastors, missionaries and other church leaders.Sources: Joshua Project, Wikipedia, Etnopedia
How to Pray for
- Pray that people beholden to false gods, idols and spirits would embrace Christ as the only God.
- Pray for health and strength for local missionaries working in remote areas filled with dangers.
- Pray that churches would thrive and bring the warmth and light of God amid the darkness of their surrounding communities.
More stories from Brazil
In an area rife with criminals and warring tribes, native ministry workers received some tribal people fleeing dangers and provided them with solar-powered audio Bibles. “We praise God, because one enemy group is opening their hearts to hear about the gospel,” the ministry leader said. Workers throughout the country need donations to share the gospel and disciple those who receive His grace. Pray that new churches would be strong and unified.
While native Christian workers establish new contacts with members of an ethnic group in one area, others have been working for more than 40 years in a village where another tribe has long resisted the gospel. In that area both children and adults are addicted to alcohol and drugs. “But suddenly we have been surprised by the miracles of conversion in the last five months,” the ministry leader said.
A village recently obtained online access that cleared the way for workers to create a WhatsApp group to discuss the Bible with tribal people. Workers also sent solar Bibles and used cell phones with SD cards containing the Jesus Film, Bible studies and praise songs, including material in their native language.
Tribal people have eagerly received solar audio Bibles in their native tongue and are growing closer to God. Local Christian workers are also distributing SD cards that contain the Jesus Film in the local language, as well as hymns and Bible study materials. These SD cards are placed in used cell phones collected in churches.
An ethnic woman maligned a native Christian worker and tried to keep her from spreading the gospel until severe illness drove her to seek her help. The worker explained the gospel, and the villager gave her life to Christ; her health was restored, and she now leads a women’s ministry.
Visiting a town downstream years ago, a tribal leader in Brazil had sold many of his goods and spent the earnings on alcohol. Though drunk, he was heading out in his small canoe to the tribal village he had founded. “Unable to paddle, he was swept away by the current of the river,” the leader of a native ministry said. “He lay on the hull of the canoe, and he was taken downstream far from his village. He was swept away by the wind and the river.”