“But all this comes from God, Who, through Jesus Christ, reconciled us to Himself. He has given to us this ministry of reconciliation. God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, not holding against men their sins and failures, but entrusting us with this ministry of reconciliation.“ II Cor 5: 18 & 19
Jackson and Ana Clara, below, were 2 of the 5 new Christians baptized in November of 2009. They are the first fruits of the new ministry that God has given our family. Jackson was a gang member involved in robbery, assaults, drugs and alcohol. The Lord delivered him from a life of violence and restored his relationship with Ana Clara the mother of his two children. She was baptized along with Jackson.
Jackson made use of many opportunities to testify to his old friends. One week after Jackson was baptized, his best friend, Junior, was sitting outside his house when a rival gang member rode up on a motorcycle and began shooting. Junior died in the hospital the following week, but before he died, he prayed to receive Jesus as his Lord and Savior.
Jackson and his wife Ana Clara lived in a squatter’s settlement about one mile from our home. In October of this year, 11 months after he was baptized, Jackson was killed by one of the rivals from his life before Jesus. Please pray for Clara that she would continue in her walk with Jesus and for Jackson’s 2 children that they would grow up to know the Jesus who changed their father’s life. Since Jackson’s death, both his parents and his sister’s husband have received Jesus as their Savior and are walking with the Lord. Thank you, Jesus!
Tamara is one of the beautiful young people that the Lord has brought to our church. Tamara gave her life to the Lord and first brought her aunt, Cristiana, to church. Cristiana also gave her life to Jesus and both Tamara and Cristiana were baptized on February 16 of this year. Since then, Tamara has also brought her mother, grandmother and brother to the Lord.
On June 17, Tamara’s mother, brother and grandmother were baptized (below). Now, Tamara’s father who has lived a life of alcoholism and gambling, has also made a decision to follow Christ. He has been free from drinking for the last 2 months – please pray that he will continue to walk in victory and grow in his relationship with the Lord.
Each of the new Christians baptized had a beautiful testimony. But for us, one of the most special was our son, Philip Daniel. Philip testified before his baptism, “I was raised in a Christian home and gave my life to Jesus many years ago. But today I want to make a public declaration that I want to serve Jesus for the rest of my life.” Thank you Lord!
Church Building Goes Up
January of 2010, we broke ground for the first Hope Ministries Church in Castanhal. Scott´s Dad, Philip Toth, lifted the first shovel of dirt. Together we rejoiced in the beginning of the plans God has for us.
The following step was to lay the church foundation. Volunteers from the church worked along-side the construction team, (a brick layer and 2 assistants) to level the ground and raise the metallic support structure and the outside brick walls. Then in June, with the help of a very hard working team from Fields of Harvest Church, Texas, we were able to get the floor down and have an inauguration service on June 13. Since then, through your continued generous gifts, God has provided for the sanctuary roof so that the congregation can keep dry even when it rains.
Our next step is to complete the last wall of the sanctuary and put in windows and doors to secure the building. Finally we will need to finish off the bathrooms, nursery and Sunday school room. The finished church will hold about 200 people.
Inauguration Service – June 13, 2010
It was a beautiful time of rejoicing as we celebrated the opening of our “new” building under construction. Pr. Dave from Fields of Harvest Church in Texas preached a powerful message about what it means to have a changed life in Christ. Many people that we had been praying for came forward to receive Jesus as their Savior.
Thank you, to each of you who made this special night possible through your giving and hard work!
Team 13 from Fields of Harvest
Team 13 from Texas brought 21 very special brothers and sisters to Brazil. While their main purpose was to raise the first Fields of Harvest Church building in Castanhal, they also ministered to our family and to the church people here. From sleeping in hammocks, to cooking for big teams, to moving dirt with shovels and a tractor even late into the night, to praying for those in need, to making new friends, their time here in Brazil was a total success.
Thank you, Team 13, for working so hard to raise the money for your trip and to build the church here. Thank you, Team 13, for coming, for sharing the Word , for praying, for loving us and for loving the people that we are here to reach.
Hebrews 6:10 says, “For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love, which you have shown for His name, in ministering to the needs of the saints, as you still do.”
You have an eternal reward!
In September of this year we were able to make the final payment on the river property in Bujaru. The Lord has given us a beautiful piece of river front property on the Guama River. Team 13 from Fields of Harvest went with us to see the land and pray over the property as well as to see some communities on the Guama River where we will be planting our first churches.
Pr. Bert and his wife Jeanine from Branch of the Lord Fellowship in New York also visited us this year. Besides ministering to the new believers in the Castanhal Church, they also made a trip with us to Bujaru to see what God is preparing on the rivers. Our next step is to fence off the river property and then build a meeting hall that can be used as a church and to house teams. From there we will build a dock for a medical boat and a pastor’s house, and then see what God has next!
“Blessed is the man whom You choose to come near to you, that he may dwell in your courts. We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house…” Psalms 65:4
We can’t thank the Lord enough for the many, many miracles of salvation and deliverance in the lives of the new believers. 20 more new Christians were baptized last month in November, 2010. Besides 4 from Jackson’s family, there were 5 other couples, 2 single men, 2 teenage girls, a single mother and our precious daughter, Havilah.
One of the young men baptized this month, Joni, has won 6 members of his extended family to the Lord in the last 3 months. Luciano and Viviane (Joni’s cousin) are one couple who were on the verge of divorce when they came to know Jesus. They have received salvation, a restored marriage and a new life in Jesus. Luciano has already won his sister and her husband to the Lord and helped save their marriage as well.
Jackson’s father, who was also just baptized, shared with us today that after 32 years of being enslaved to alcohol, both he and his wife have been set free by the power of Jesus. It has been over 2 months since either of them have touched a drop of alcohol. God is faithful!
Many of us have gone through financial difficulties in this last year. In the last 6 years in Brazil, prices have quadrupled while the dollar has dropped to less than ½ of its value in 2004. For those of you who are not mathematicians, that means that we are living on 1/8 of what we were 6 years ago.
But even though many times we were down to our last pennies, God was faithful to provide in ways that we never expected. We want to encourage you with the good news that He will always provide for your every need. In 2 Cor. 9:8 God promises that we will always have an ample sufficiency for every good work that he calls us to do. He is FAITHFUL and He ALWAYS will be!
The best thing that we can do in these times of crisis and uncertainty is to “stock up” on the WORD of GOD. We can also make deposits into our account in heaven by being faithful to the Lord in our giving. God promises in Luke 6:38, “Give and it shall be given unto you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over.” These are principles that we have put into practice this last year.
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and has made the Lord his hope and confidence. He is like a tree planted along a river bank, with its roots reaching deep into the water – a tree not bothered by the heat nor worried by the long months of drought. Its leaves stay green and it goes right on producing delicious fruit.” (Jeremiah 17:7,8)
This last year, your giving has:
- Met our family’s needs for 2010
- Raised the first church building for Fields of Harvest in Castanhal
- Purchased 170mts X 200mts of Guama River front property in Bujaru for future church planting and medical work
- Built homes for the poor, fed the hungry, provided clothing and medicines for people in need
Pray for wisdom, strength and protection for our children that are studying and helping in the ministry
Rachel – in Los Angeles is finishing her degree in psychology and working at Nick Vujicic’s ministry – Life without Limbs.
Rebekah and Marçal – Marçal continues to help in the ministry working with the youth and worship team. Rebekah just received a complete scholarship to finish her degree at the Federal University here in Castanhal. A major in physical education and physical therapy will qualify her to open a dance school with Hope Ministries – a lifelong dream she has had.
Bethany – has come home to Castanhal with her EMT degree and will be helping in the ministry in the squatter’s settlement and river communities.
Christina – studying at the Federal University in Belem towards a degree in nursing.
Deborah – continues with med school preparation course in Belem.
Philip Daniel – starting 8th grade – is winning his friends at school to the Lord.
Havilah – starting 4th grade – continues to be a big help to her Mom.
Pray for health, strength and wisdom for Scott and Michelle to fulfill what God has called us to do.
Pray for Hope Ministries
The Castanhal Church – that God would continue to build His church and raise up MANY pastors,
missionaries, and church workers to reach both Castanhal and the river communities.
For the river communities – that God would give direction where to plant the first river churches and that
His Spirit would go before us preparing the hearts of the people to be reached for His kingdom.
Opportunities for Giving
- Completing the Castanhal Church building – finish the walls in the sanctuary, bathrooms, nursery and Sunday School room
- Funds for developing the Bujaru Property – fencing in the property, building a care taker’s house and then building our first river church
- River Ministry – travel, boat fuel, church planting
- Medical Boat Fund
- Children’s Ministry
- Toth Family Support– with the value of the dollar being low in Brazil, each of your gifts makes a vital difference in meeting our family’s personal needs of food, electricity, and transportation. Thank you so much for making it possible for us to live and serve here in Brazil!
Until the whole world has heard of God’s true Christmas gift – JESUS.
Scott, Michelle and Family
Donate Securely Online:
or Mail Checks to:
P.O. Box 77
La Porte, TX
Checks for both personal family support and for Hope Ministries donations should be made payable to Hope Ministries.
All donations are tax deductable.
Please pray with us and contribute as God directs you towards reaching the Amazon river peoples. May God bless you as you share in reaping the Harvest Field of His Kingdom!