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“Happy fall, y’all” is a phrase I often hear in Missouri. Fall is my favorite time of year for many reasons, including the Advent season. Across the world people are crying out and searching for hope, and as Christ’s church we have a beautiful message to share about Christ’s coming.
Fall is also a time to reflect on the end of the year. Despite the challenges that the pandemic has brought, God has been at work in mighty ways in 2021.
This year was the 95th anniversary of the Baptist Convention of Rio Grande do Sul. Over the past couple of decades, the convention has focused on church planting and multiplication, and this year was no exception. This year the state convention planted five new churches and celebrated another three of their church plants becoming established churches!
The state convention also ordained five men into church ministry. One of those men, Leandro Weige Dias, is a Kairos Student in our Doctor of Ministry program. Leandro grew up in the church and has been mentored by his pastor, Olavo Vigil, who is also a Kairos student. Leandro has served in different areas of the church, including preaching and teaching. He has most recently been the worship leader at the church. He is being mentored to become a church planter in the city of Pelotas, which has nearly 350,000 people but few gospel-preaching churches. Leandro’s prayer is that he can live a full and faithful life to Jesus Christ. On his application to Kairos, Leandro wrote: “I want to reach the end of my life knowing that I have fought the good fight, I have kept the faith and lived for Jesus Christ. Life goes by very fast, and I have a desire to take advantage of it to work and live for Jesus.”
All the Kairos students have been working on their first assignments, and in October they had their first online gathering, where they shared what they are working on and gathered feedback from their peers. The president of Sioux Falls Seminary, Greg Henson, joined the gathering and shared more about the global vision of Kairos University. Our vision for Kairos Brazil is to continue our mission of coming alongside where God is already at work in the churches of Rio Grande do Sul, equipping and empowering existing leaders and helping train future generations of leaders. Pray with us that God blesses this new program and that he may even provide future seminary professors among the ranks of our graduates.
This year has also brought a lot of traveling for our family, not just from Brazil to the States but also reconnecting with family, friends, and partners during the past several weeks. This October, we spent nearly four weeks in the Dakotas and were able to be in eight churches and two conferences.
In November, we have a couple more church visits before American Thanksgiving. At the end of the month we will be traveling as a family to Colorado Springs to the Missions Training Institute, where we will do their Debriefing and Renewal program. Please pray for our family during this time as we intentionally dive into the ups and downs of our first term on the field.
In January, Brandon will be traveling back to Brazil for a couple of weeks to complete the renewal of his work visa so we can return as a family in June 2022. Pray we get everyone in the family approved to return to Brazil.
We are so thankful for each of you as you partner with our family and the work in Brazil. We thank God for his faithfulness in surrounding us with such an amazing team! As we have been traveling to churches, we have been sharing this benediction from Hebrews 13:21–22: “Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.”
Brandon & Marci Jones
Avenida Cristóvão Colombo, 3452/201, Porto Alegre, RS, 90560-002, Brasil