Pray for Brazil on Sunday, February 13, 2011

Prayers for Brazil: Matthew 5:21-37

Lead us from the suffering of the socio/economic injustice so prevalent in Brazil.

Lead us from the hypocrisy of political promises only half fulfilled.

Lead us from empty words, rules and regulations that are only forced on the poor who have no recourse, who squalor in prisons while those criminals of the upper classes are never found guilty.

Hear our prayer for equal school systems for all children so that the poor will be prepared to compete in the work world, removing them from the necessity of building their homes in slums on inadequate land, where during the rainy season, mudslides cause loss of lives and possessions of  those most in need.

Hear our plea for a health system that enables the poor to have the same excellence in treatment that the rich have and be hospitalized with the same equipment, cleanliness and competent care.

Pray with us that the judicial and political system will be composed of dedicated people who will work for the end of all types of injustices and most of all, will show the kind of love for their people as was manifested in Christ. Amen

Mission Stewardship Moment from Brazil:

We, Marilene Sousa and Maria Garcia, want to thank you for the opportunity so many donors gave us to make our dream of becoming nurses a reality. Through Global Ministries giving, our lives were transformed from cleaning women, living in a shanty town with only 4 years of a grammar school education, to college graduates on January 23, 2011 from a university in Rio de Janeiro. We now have a nursing degree and are ready to serve our people in the profession we chose several years ago when a Global Ministries missionary introduced us to the importance of health education in a course she gave in our shanty town, a health training course for community educators.

Her encouragement sent us on to finish grammar school and then high school. Later with more of Global Ministries donors, we were able to take a course enabling us to become nurses assistants, all this time working in our shanty town family health clinic administered by this missionary. But to go to college and become nurses was out of our financial reach and then Global Ministries donations gave us another chance. We are both grandmothers and are mostly responsible for the financial welfare of our family. Today we are nurses with a more secure future but even more, more and more determined to be the kind of professionals who consider their work, God's work to treat and educate our patients.

(Prayer and Mission Moment written by Rev. Barb de Souza)

Global Ministries International Partners in Brazil:

  • Instituto de Estudos de Religião, ISER (Institute for Religions Studies) Involved in research and religious studies as they affect social/economic/racial/sexual policies. An ecumenical institution, which publishes books and articles about religion and religious issues, ISER is active in educational programs, such as health and sexuality, women's programs, special school programs for adolescents and action for the betterment in all these categories.
  • Association of Community Health Educators (AECS) A non-profit (NGO) Association formed in 1996 by the Global Ministers Missionary, Barb de Souza, and students of the training course for Community Health Educators.  In 1999, the City Health Dept. of Rio de Janeiro, signed a contract (renewable every 2 years) for the financial support of the Family Health Program in the Shantytown of Canal do Anil where these women had been working as volunteers since the founding of the Association. The family health program promotes health education and basic health care in  economically poor areas.  The Association's family health clinic at the present time, 2010, has 3 doctors, 3 nurses and 6 nurses’ assistants, 18 health educators, 1 dentist with 2 assistants, and an administrative assistant..  The city has not yet approved financial support for the Association's rehabilitation center, with the 2 physical therapists and a supervisor but it is still hoped that the value of this program as part of a basic health program, will be recognized in an area where there is no such treatment for lower income families.  As of March of 2010, the city decided to remove NGOs' administration from many l of the  Family Health Clinic and thus now the clinic is being being administrated by a city appointed social organization and with the rent of the Association´s 3 buildings, the physical therapy program is being financed. The Association continues to administer and maintain a children's program whose main objective is to keep the children away from the drugs and violence of shantytown living and the Association continues to maintain the training course for Community Health Educators, and the scholarship program for the health employes to finish high school or professional courses and even college.
  • Igreja Presbiteriana Unida do Brasil (United Presbyterian Church of Brazil)

For more info about Brazil, click here:

Global Ministries Missionary in Brazil:

Rev. Barb de Souza is a Global Ministries long-term volunteer with the Global Ministries and the Brasilian Partner, ISER, Institute of Relgious Studies, serving as an advisor and teacher of popular education in the areas of sexuality leading to women's empowerment. She retired in 2002 after 16 years as a health education missionary for Global Ministries and   became a long term volunteer of the Global Minstries´ new international partner, the Association of Community Health Educators. She is coordinator/director of the Family Health Program, a city financed program in contract with the Association of Community Educators which administers it in a 3 building clinic that was built and is maintained by the Association. As of January of 2011, Barbara, at age 80, really retiring and a new Board of Directors was formed, all having worked with Barbara all these years, well preparing them to take over the Associations projects as well as maintain vigilance over the 3 building clinic and all the equipment which it contains. Barbara will remain on the Board of Directors as Secretary, responsable for fund raising and translation of the newsletters from Portgues to English.

Pray for Partners without Global Ministries Mission Personnel: Paraguay

God, we lift up the different ministries of the Disciples of Christ in Paraguay and ask that you bless them. Amen

For more info about Paraguay, click here: