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The Holmquists’ June Letter

June 2014

Dear Friends,

Growing up, if I complained to my dad that things just weren’t going my way, he would sometimes jokingly say to me, “That’s life in the big city.” Now that I live in a big city, I know what he meant. Each week presents unique challenges. Just last week, for example, our whole family left to run an errand and the car we were borrowing broke down. But, out of nowhere, a barefooted man appeared and said he had a mechanic friend just down the road. Great! However, at that very moment a plastic bottle full of urine that someone had thrown on the side of the road slowly rolled under our car and into traffic where a truck hit it and sprayed its contents on the passenger side of our car – and Melissa through the open window. Not great! We were able to push the car to the mechanic and he began to work on it. After an hour or so, he said he couldn’t finish because that afternoon Brazil was playing in the World Cup and clearly nobody works when Brazil plays! So we walked until we found a bus (the bus driver was working!) that had just enough space to wedge all six of us in and we were on our way. Thankfully, we arrived home safely and in time to see Brazil win. Yes, that’s life in the big city. A lot of times it makes us long for that City whose builder is God.

Thank you for your prayers, they are crucial in the city or in the country. We had a great trip to the next state north of Rio, Minas Gerais, which is known for its precious gem mines and its coffee plantations. God protected us in a close call on the highway on the way. I preached at a three day conference on the theme, The Church: Christ’s Bride. It was wonderful to see how God is using Brazilian pastors and Brazilian missionaries together to expand His church in Minas.

Recently, we have also travelled to explore other ministry possibilities. The Lord seems to be moving us in a new direction. The land on which we have been laboring to build a church for over a year is still entangled with time consuming legal issues. We’ve sensed other strong indications that the time is not right for us to build there. We plan to leave the land and the prospects of a future church there in the hands of Brazilian coworkers who have been helping us. Our hope is to be able to build a wall around the land before August to prevent it from invasions while the legal issues are settled. In the meantime, we have been helping a church in Rio whose pastor has suffered some hard times personally and whose wife is chronically ill.

It’s hard for us to believe that in July we’ll have been with Baptist Mid-Missions for 10 years. We thank God for our mission, our home churches, and for the many churches and individuals who have prayed and helped us so faithfully. Our plan is to return to the US at the end of July to report to ministry supporters. During this year in the US, we’d love to see each of you who has been involved in the ministry here over these years. If a church would like to set up a meeting with us, our contact information is below. Please pray for evangelistic opportunities in the city during the World Cup and the preparations for our move.

Our mailing address is:
Baptist Mid-Missions
Estrada da Grama, 13
Qd. D, Lt. 5 Guaratiba
Rio, RJ 23033-220
Brazil

Love in Christ,
Brendan, Melissa, Myla, Elaina, Daniel and Flavia Holmquist

Muindis: April 2014

April 2014

Dear Ministry Partners,

“Faith is God’s work in us: our faith, and our new relationship with God as believers, and all the divine gifts that are enjoyed within this relationship, were all alike secured for us by Jesus’ death on the cross” (J.I. Parker). Easter holiday is a great time to think and wonder at the love of God demonstrated at the cross. The result of the cross is the true sense of being bestowed the authority to be called children of God, and then the hope of wonder of how we shall appear when Christ appears, and finally the present requirement to purify ourselves before His coming (1 John 3:1-3).

The month of April was full of visitations and door to door evangelism during Easter Holiday weekend. We did manage to meet new faces and reach out to new homes that have been developed in the recent days. Some people responded to the gospel and others gave their worldly reasons for a consideration. But the greatest challenge is the effect of false teaching in Kenya. We had our greatest fellowships and service attendance during the month since most of the school kids were home on vacation. One of the American families that have been with us for almost a year just returned back to States after their work permit expired and we have been blessed by their involvement.

We praise the Lord for His work here at Elgon View Baptist Church. We praise the Lord for the approval of the church building plan. We praise the Lord for those saved and they will be joining the church by baptism.

Pray for our kids at school, our physical health, our safety and security (including the whole nation), completion of our home, our age-challenged parents, and Elgon View Baptist Church ministries.

Pray for Pastor Brian Wiita from Faith Baptist Church, Hermantown, Minnesota. Arriving on 4th July and leaving on 14th July 2014. Pray for Ankeny Baptist Church, Ankeny, Iowa. Arriving on 18th July and leaving on 30th July 2014. Pray that these 2014 summer mission teams will be well prepared in any way possible to serve God with their limited time here. Remember that, in all, it requires a lot of time and resources to plan and to effect that plan. “THIS IS AFRICA.” We truly look forward for their ministries with us.

We thank you all for prayers and financial support for our upkeep and toward the Church Building Project. Please be part of what God is doing around the world with prayers, with financial support, and with availing yourself. You can go, you can go and give, you can give, and all together we pray. Please send your support through Baptist Mid-Missions.

For a Full Reward,

Stephen & Edna Muindi
Ian, Regina, Rena
2 John 8

Holmquists in April 2014

April 2014

Dear Friends,

I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.  He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock . . . And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God.” Psalm 40:1-3

In January when I was feeling extremely ill, it was my job to translate into Portuguese a sermon preached by our American visitor David Forbes.  The Lord gave me grace to speak and He also used that very text and message to be my lifeline in the following days and months. God hears our prayers and sets our feet on a rock that cannot be moved, and that Rock is Jesus.  I’m doing better now and it’s time to do what the rest of the verse says and give God praise.

• Thank you for your prayers for Teen Camp. The Lord blessed in many ways with the weather, health of the campers, programming and preaching. We were able to take two young men named Cassio and David that live near our neighborhood. Both apparently made important spiritual decisions.  After camp, David asked if he could come to church with us and he continues to come almost every Sunday morning. Pray for these two young men.

• This would have been my third year in a row going to the Amazon to minister, but health didn´t permit it. However, our Brazilian co-worker Pastor José was able to go and hold a conference and deliver training materials and gifts that were donated by the churches of Rio. In spite of the enemy´s strong opposition, large crowds came and several Ticuna Indians were saved and many lives were edified.

• Evidently the Lord has opened up a new avenue of ministry for us – Birthday Party Ministry! Birthday parties for all ages are often a major event here, and so far this year I´ve been given three opportunities to preach at birthday parties. I´m always glad to accept these opportunities to preach the Gospel because, inevitably, unsaved family members will be present.

Prayer Requests:

• Please pray specifically for the following major evangelistic opportunities: In April, I´ll be preaching in two different churches on Easter; on May 21 we will be travelling nine hours north to preach a three day conference in our friend Pastor Ricardo´s church in Minas Gerais; and in June-July, Rio will host a number of World Cup soccer games and we´ll be involved in evangelistic outreach to the crowds that will be flooding into to the city.

We can´t thank and praise God enough for your faithful prayers and support of the work here.

Love in Christ,
The Holmquists

Our mailing address is:

Baptist Mid-Missions
Estrada da Grama, 13
Qd. D, Lt. 5 Guaratiba
Rio, RJ 23033-220
Brazil

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