Day one: Brazilians are innovative religiously.

Tomorrow the Olympics begin in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

You probably know that Lois and I lived in Brazil from 1977 to 1986 where, as missionaries, we provided support to pastors and leaders in the rapidly growing numbers of churches.

 

Brazil is a VERY religious place, and diverse. Most Americans think that Brazil is strongly Catholic, but that is a mistake. Continue reading “Day one: Brazilians are innovative religiously.”

What is at stake when Brazilians “do missiology”

When Brazilians think about how they participate in God’s mission they are “doing missiology.” Hopefully the work of thinking will help them to do some good.  If they are successful we are all likely to benefit. 

The numbers of missionaries and the number of places where  they work is staggering.
Brazil may now be the second largest sender of missionaries in the world. Continue reading “What is at stake when Brazilians “do missiology””

Why I am excited to work in Martureo

The world is changing, and I am excited to join a team of Brazilians who are leading some of those changes, as they follow God into His mission.  I recently accepted an invitation to become Executive Coordinator at Martureo: the Brazilian Center for Missiological Reflection. Of course, it sweetens the deal to know I get to travel to Brazil regularly!
There are actually several cool things that excite me about my new ministry location and focus.  First, I have been preparing for it all my life.  I first went to Brazil Continue reading “Why I am excited to work in Martureo”

Martureo

In late April, I started a new job in Brazil.  I am now the Executive Coordinator for Martureo:  the Brazilian Center for Missiological Reflection.

Marcos Amado founded Martureo to produce resources Brazilians need to assess their experience in global mission and chart a course for the future.

When Lois and I went as missionaries to Brazil in the 70’s we believed Brazilians should not so much receive missionaries as send them.  Over the next few decades that is exactly what happened.  A movement of Brazilians in global mission emerged and grew. Continue reading “Martureo”

On living a charmed life #2 — Obrigado amigos e colegas!

Two special gifts came our way last month.  And they point to larger gifts that guide our lives. A first gift came in the form of an old booklet of Brazilian recipes.  It was a reminder to cherish the prayers of our friends.  Read about that gift in another post on this blog.

The second gift was a trip to Brazil.  It was a reminder that friends and networks broaden our world.  Though we left Brazil 30 years ago, we still have Brazilian friends.  Besides the friendship, they are a mature network of people who still take us into worlds we might never have known without them.

We left Brazil a long time ago. Continue reading “On living a charmed life #2 — Obrigado amigos e colegas!”

On living a charmed life—gift #1—thanks to you!

Lois and I have been entrusted with gifts and privileges over the years.  Such things may come ultimately from God, but they are delivered through people like you.  Two special gifts  came this month and reminded me why we say “entrusted.”  We get gifts so we can use them responsibly.
The first gift was when we found an old recipe book of Brazilian recipes from a women’s meeting on our first visit back from from Brasil.
Let’s go back a few steps:  Before we got married, we decided to be missionaries.  A year after tying the knot, we moved to Brazil — 25 and 23 years old!
Leaving for Brazil

We started our family in Brazil, and then raised our daughters in Guatemala.  Some people thought we were really dedicated—giving away our lives—but we always thought we were on the receiving end, getting many more good things than we ever gave up.

The recipe book, and the prayers of friends
The first gift I got this month was an old recipe book with only five recipes.  It’s old, and typed on a typewriter.  We aren’t exactly sure when this little booklet was made. The introduction includes language that often made us feel uncomfortable because it implied that we were doing something particularly special.  It also made Brazilians out to be poor and needy, and our friends in Brazil were very much like us.  Sometimes our friends nurtured ideas of Brazil that was might have been more consistent with the Amazon jungle than with the very urban context of the two cities we lived in.  Not only was the jungle 5 hours away by plane, the cities we lived in were amazingly modern, in some ways beyond what we had experienced in the USA.  São Paulo (15 million people then) was enormous and an industrial powerhouse .  Curitiba (3 million) was a great city to live in, and a global standard setter for good urban planning.
What made this booklet a gift was also in the introduction.
Screen Shot 2015-12-13 at 9.31.18 PM
Something more important than the mis-conceptions about who we were and where we lived, was the willingness of our friends to make special efforts to pray for us.  We were the privileged ones because we were on the receiving end of the prayers of many more people than anyone we knew.  Many still pray for us.  We get all the benefits.
Its mysterious to some, but God seems to pay attention when people turn to him and cry out for help on behalf of others.  We were those “others” for whom our friends cried out to God.  It’s not like bad things never happened to us.  But it is true that the bad things never STAYED bad.  People we hardly knew kept talking to Him about us.
I have attached a link to the entire cookbook.  It has five great, and simple, recipes for Brazilian food that we still love to this day.
How to use this gift responsibly?  I think the answer is hidden behind the second gift I received recently, and I will post about that in the next couple of days.
But using this gift responsibly begins by saying THANK YOU!
You have made a huge difference in our lives.  All the joyful pictures and family joys that we post on Facebook, are because of you.  The skills we have now and use to serve others — Lois helping students at the High School to find their way to College, and me, standing as an ally for Latin Americans as they enter a world of conflict, oppression and need in the name of Jesus , so that they can offer blessing and well-being and encourage others to follow Jesus—these are special skills and we have them because you gave us a context in which to grow and develop them.  Thank you.

Migração árabe ao Brasil e influencias transnacionais

Resumo escrito desde perspectiva brasileira: A imigração árabe no Brasil

Palavras chaves:

Nahda — literature and the rise of Arab Nationalism.
Mahjar — Arab Diaspora
Liga Andaluz — Organizada em São Paulo em 1933, com o objetivo de dar continuidade ao Renascimento Literário Árabe.

An area to explore:  Arab-Jews and the migration of Arabs and Jews to the Americas.

I began by watching this video by Zvi Ben-Dor Benite of NYU about the historical roots of the reality of Arab-Jews today.

Veja também  este site brasileiro sobre Judeus Árabes

Outros escritos:
Elias Farhat, o poeta líbano-brasileiro do arabismo

A poesia árabe moderna tem raízes no Brasil