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Tim and Martia Franklin
ABWE - Natal, Brazil

February 3, 2017

Blessed be the LORD for His great mercies towards His people.

We just got back from the 70th annual meeting of the state association of Baptist churches. Six local pastors each gave a message on “The Great Commission and its Implications.” We praise the LORD for His blessings of unity, maturity, and vision. Statistics: 37 churches + 27 congregations. Implications: most of churches are involved in starting at least another church—and that by addition not division. These baby churches will need pastors. God is calling men to study at the Bible school and to serve these new flocks. Praise His name. [note: a “congregation” is a baby church; not yet autonomous].

In the meantime, “preacher boys”—as one supporter endearingly identified them—need tools. We praise the LORD for resuming the “Books and Bibles project.” Most notably, through the generosity of God’s people Wiersbe’s 6-vol. commentary is on hand. Quite a power tool for preaching. Thank you for your part in this.

We continue fully involved in the Bible school. Tim taught 10 credits both semesters of 2016. One of our part-time students, a single self-supported missionary, sped ahead to heaven. How do you grade her Bible test posthumously? Perhaps a “Well done.” Martia capably keeps us going: home, homeschool, hospitality, two weekly Bible story times for the neighbor children, and helps a children’s ministry in the church nearby. Of the highlights, Natalie graduated from high school. Gisele is fully engaged in ministry. Luciano (autistic?), one of the neighbor kids to our west, now sits through the Bible story and likes the song “Deus é Bom pra Mim.”

God has exceptionally blessed our family. Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel, and Hannah each have grown, including in their worship and service to the LORD. God has given them healthy friendships at home and at home (there and here). The older three already excel their dad and mom in music capabilities. They are participating in “Louvor em Harmonia” music conference this week.

We praise the LORD for the progress in the Flores do Campo church plant. Through intentional strolls in the park God has opened the door for ministry. Out of the conversations and contacts grew a neighborhood Bible study hosted by Mrs. Katia. Please pray for salvation and spiritual growth. Perhaps these will be the core of the future church. Please pray for us, especially for the Lord’s wisdom, provision, and the logistics. Also rejoice in the LORD with us: we feel especially blessed because this single venue combines all the components of our ministry caption; a microcosm of our ministry vision.

  • “Helping”—cooperative teamwork with Igapó Baptist Church under the leadership of Pr. Erinaldo.
  • “Brazilians”—the geographical context of our activity
  • “to know God”—knowledge and devotion. Davi and Sara just graduated from the Bible school and want to serve together with us. Together we have shoveled dirt, made mortar, supplied the brick-layers, shared the gospel, taught the Scriptures, and prayed.
  • “to make Him known”—evangelism that leads to church planting that leads to missions.
  • “2 Tim 2:2”—life to life investing in relationships that will glorify of God

Please continue to pray for us as we serve the churches and the Bible school students. Pray also for the Bible school students that they would grow in their knowledge, love and service to the LORD.

 

January 2, 2017

Merry Christmas! And a Joyful New Year walking in the ways of the Lord, pointing others to Him, and looking forward to His return!

Building church parsonage in Serrinha

The Serrinha congregation has been in our prayer letter for several years. The mother church Igapo has been faithfully sending many of its members to lead services, music, and continue to make expansions for Sunday school buildings. One of their members was Francinete a single “home missionary” lady who spent the past few years investing her life into this congregation. Several weeks ago she died suddenly. She was greatly loved and respected especially by the children. Magno got saved through the Igapo church, graduated from seminary in 2015, and has been ministering to the Serrinha congregation throughout his days of seminary up to present, yet has been somewhat limited by transportation and distance. Magno got married to Thaline just a few weeks ago. For the time they are renting a little apartment in the Igapo neighborhood, but soon they will be moving into the church parsonage that is being built in Serrinha. Tim has been working in Serrinha every day possible since the semester finished. He takes along any of the Bible college students who are available as well, although most have gone home for the summer break. We pray that the parsonage will be a big boost for the work in Serrinha to have a fulltime pastor living right there in their own town. Pray for the men who are working on this project, giving up their days off to serve the Lord in this way. Pray for them that they would whole heartily use their skills to get this done as soon as possible. Pray for good fellowship and harmony as they work together. Pray for Magno and Thaline as they take this step to live further from their families and serve full time in this community.

Flores do Campo Bible Study

The workdays and energy of the bricklayers of the Igapo church have been focused the past several months on building the wall around the property for the Flores do Campo building. The wall has been completed and the Satelite church donated iron grating that they needed no longer. This will be put atop the half-wall along the front of the future building. There still is the need to start the next phase of the building itself, but now those workdays and energies will be devoted and focused on the church parsonage in Serrinha. We continue to hold a Bible Study about three times a month at Katia’s house which is located near the Flores do Campo property. Please pray that God will bless this work for the edification and maturing of the believers, and the salvation of the unbelievers so that a new local church in Flores do Campo will bloom and grow, and in time the building for the church to meet together be built. Little is much when God is in it.

Satelite

We have continued to attend the Satelite church, yet without leadership responsibility since we returned from furlough in Feb. of this year. We praise the Lord for at least five different men in the church who are able to take the responsibility of preaching or teaching Sunday School when needed. This year the church started back up their AWANA club which had been stopped for a few years. There weren’t great numbers, but it was a good start and we pray that next year there will be more. (Our family didn’t serve in this area. Rachel, Rebecca, and Martia decided to help in AWANA closer to home with the church near the seminary. It has been neat to get to know some of the children from around our neighborhood and be able to have that personal contact when we see them around the neighborhood.) Pastor Rubens and Mellyne were blessed with another little girl on Dec. 26. Mellyne was directing the choir sing the Hallelujah Chorus just a few hours before little Ana Cecilia was born. Pray for Pastor Rubens as he shepherds his young family and the church. Natalie will be taking over directing the choir this year and is already getting things in order to start in January practicing for the Easter cantata. Pray for her as she takes on this new responsibility. It’s a joy to our hearts to see her be willing to serve the Lord in new capacities. We all enjoyed singing together in the Christmas Catata this year.

Seminary

December began with the rush of end of the year seminary activities such as making and grading finals and termpapers, graduation, and annual board meeting. We had five graduate from seminary: Davi & Sara, Dalva, Ligya, and Larisa. Davi & Sara will be staying on to study in the missions course, and continuing the serve alongside the Igapo church and the Flores do Campo church plant. Ligya is also staying to study missions as she continues serving at Satelite and as she looks forward to getting married at the end of 2017. Larisa and Dalva will continue to work in their home churches. Pray for each of the students as they spend time with their families and their home churches. Pray for them in the diverse challenges they face: finances, family, health of loved ones, churches going through difficulties, etc. Pray for each one for physical and spiritual renewal. Pray for them in the many ministry opportunities that are before them that they would be motivated and equipped in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Thank you for your part in the LORD’s work.

Tim and Martia; Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

Note address change on US address

You may have noticed this change last prayer update, but just in case you didn’t, Please note that our US address has had some changes.

c/o Robert and Linda Franklin
5976 North SR 121
Roosevelt, UT 84066.

 

October 13, 2016

Church beginnings at Flores do Campo continues

We praise the Lord for the Bible study in Katia’s home! The same ones have continued to come as well as new people from the neighborhood. Last week the first man Kaka joined the study. This week two more young men came around towards the end, taking part in the study that Davi led on prayer on the breezy front veranda of the house. Last night there were six children: Evelyn, Vinicios, Mateus, Danielle Maria Eduarda, and Lilia Vitoria. The children met in the living room listening attentively to Sara as she explained the red page of the wordless book. The evening ended with a special snack of Brazilian sloppy joes and cake to commemorate Children’s Day here in Brazil. See attached photo. It truly is a joy to our hearts to be a part in sharing the Word of God with these who are eager to hear. Pray that each one will come to know Jesus Christ as their Savior, and those saved that they would grow and mature in the faith. Pray for Davi and Sara also, as they will be graduating from seminary in Nov., to know the next step whether that be to take the missions course at seminary and continue helping with this church plant, or to return to Sao Paulo where Davi is from and help in that corner of God’s harvest.

Seminary open house

The seminary semester has been going well. This Saturday is a day for people to visit the campus, attend a sample class, and get to talk firsthand with some of the students and professors. Pray that this will be a day of good fellowship as well as a time of planting seeds of interest in studying at the seminary, confirming God’s direction, and strengthening interest in praying for this ministry.

Hospitality

Since it was a holiday yesterday celebrating Children’s Day, many had the day off from work and school. Natalie took the initiative to organize a group of people from church to come for lunch. We had a table full with 17 people. It was a blessing to have this time together with the church family. It was also a blessing for me(Martia) as a Mom to see the girls willingness and involvement in working together to clean the house and prepare the food to be able to share our home and hospitality with others. I thank the Lord for many through the years who have been such good examples to us of this ministry. Hospitality of course is not just getting the house clean and inviting people to share good food together. It is seeking to be a blessing to others and share in meaningful conversations. Pray that the Lord will help us to make these times helpful and meaningful for the glory of God.

Tim and Hannah enjoy short visit to the states

Special invitation and opportunity arose for Tim and Hannah to spend some time with Tim’s parents in Utah. Tim’s sister Deborah and her family were able to be there part of this time as well, so Hannah has also enjoyed the time playing with her cousins Elijah and Tiana. We thank the Lord for these special moments in these few short weeks to make memories for the times we are far apart. Martia and the girls are safe and sound here in Brazil, trusting God’s protection, and looking forward to the return of Tim and Hannah on Oct. 22nd.

Note address change on US address:

Please note that our US address has had some changes.

c/o Robert and Linda Franklin
5976 North SR 121
Roosevelt, UT 84066

Thank you for your part in the LORD’s work.

Tim and Martia; Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

July 11, 2016

(this time it’s Tim writing. I know I can cast the beginnings of a church into the figure of “birth” and “babies” but I don’t want to sensationalize the labor… nor get in trouble with excited grandmas reading just the headline).

Saturday, July 9, 2016 the LORD enabled us to break ground at the church plant. This is a joint project between two churches here (Natal, Brazil) and many churches there (North America). We (Tim and Martia) have the privilege to connect them and you. Yesterday we gave a report of the day’s work to the respective churches, Igapo Baptist Church and Cidade Satelite Baptist Church, and now want to forward to you. One of the things I shared with them is that the LORD has provided enough to get started. What we need now is labor. Things are cooking up for a big group on Tuesday. Perhaps we’ll have part of the wall up the by the end of the week. Three prayer requests we shared with them:

* Wisdom in the decisions bureaucratic and logistical. We need to start with the perimeter wall (security and theft). It would be very strategic to have a place to gather people for evangelism, teaching and preaching. For now, were a meeting in another neighborhood where a few members of Igapo church live.

* Provision for workers. Besides the physical benefit, there are multiple spiritual benefits related to giving the believers the privilege to serve the LORD. We believe God wants it that way. Throughout the book of Acts, we see the good news spread by God’s people. Perhaps at some point God will provide the superstructure. That’s a glorious description of “pole building”—pillars, beams, rafters and roof. Within a few days a company that works with pre-fabricated concrete can install the skeleton of the auditorium. Everything else would be within the engineering/construction capabilities of the volunteers.

* Salvation of souls. That God would bless the evangelism. Buildings are about lives. Theologically, they are insignificant. Functionally, they are strategic. Pray that God would multiply our efforts—bless the evangelism (“go”, “make disciples”), enable us to gather the believers in a spiritual community we call a church (“baptizing”), where they can be edified, serve and reach out (“teaching”, back to “go”).

Also,

* for the Bible school students Davi and Sara. Last week Martia wrote about the “planting” and “watering” (spiritually). The LORD has enabled us to connect with many people. Almost every trip we have at least one significant conversation. Continue to pray that God will bring forth eternal glory to His name. Davi and Sarah were married in December and are scheduled to graduate this November. There are multiple ministry needs (and invitations) in their home states… and at the church plant here. It would be strategic to live in the target neighborhood. Pray for God’s clear leading in their lives.

July 2, 2016

Church plant beginnings at Flores do Campo

Flores do Campo (Flowers of the field) is a new neighborhood right off the highway heading to the new Natal airport. Two years ago land was purchased for a new church building. We have been praying and looking forward to being a part of this new church plant alongside sister churches Satelite and Igapo. For the past two months we have been going to an open park/exercise area in this growing neighborhood for the purpose of making contact with people and offering in home Bible studies. Sometimes it is Tim and Martia or one of the girls. Sometimes seminarians Davi and Sara go with us. God has opened doors of contact. There have been various levels of openness and regularly we have the opportunity of spiritually significant conversation. One of the first ones we met is a believer named Katia. She expressed interest the first time we met to have a Bible study in her home. She has invited several ladies from her street to attend: Socorro, Maria, Clenie, Luzia, Evelyn. Her husband is unsaved, but not opposed to having this meeting in their home. Praise the Lord for the freedom and interest. Pray for each of these that they would come to know Jesus Christ as Savior and that they may be part of this new local church. There are others we have met and pray for more chances to talk to them and point them to Jesus Christ. There is Elizabete who is very discouraged at difficulties she is going through. There is Silvanete who is a young mom with a little boy and husband in the military. Two families from the Igapo church live near this neighborhood, so they have opened their homes for Friday night meetings. We have a few songs and a message in the front area/porch of these homes. Pray for the beginnings of this new baby church. We pray for God’s wisdom and blessing in connecting with people and sharing with them the Words of Life.

Seminary semester ends

This was final exams week for the seminary. Most of the students have left campus for the one month break between semesters. Many of them need to catch up on their sleep from late nights trying to get term papers finished and finish reading assignments, etc. Most of them also have plans to see family and to serve in a variety of ministry opportunities including AWANA camp, music conference, vacation Bible school, teaching Sunday School, and preaching. Pray for them as they do these activities putting into practice things they are learning. Pray for them also for refreshment and for renewed motivation for preparing for the new semester. This morning the board meeting was held. Continue to pray for the seminary and each person involved: the board of directors, professors, and the students. The goal and motto of the seminary continues to be “to know God and to make Him known.”

Music Conference at Satelite church

Last week Natalie, Rebecca, and Rachel participated in Satelite church young people’s music conference. There were about 150 young people who took part in this event from Wed. to Sun. There were messages in the morning and evening with special music from the various churches and much time put into practicing for the cantata. The orchestra was much larger than last year. Rachel had a hard time deciding between singing or playing violin, but she decided to play violin. Sunday evening the young people presented a cantata that they had prepared during this time. Our prayer was that all be done for the glory of the Lord and the edification of the believers.

Yeah! Hannah finished third grade this week!

Thank you for your part in the LORD’s work. Your Servants of Jesus,

Tim and Martia; Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

April 8, 2016

Thank you for praying for us in this time of transition. We stayed in the guest apartment for three weeks as we put things in order at home. We decided to finish screening the house and to put in a simple closed ceiling. It has been nice to have fewer flies and less dust inside. We hope to keep undesirable critters out that would be harmful to our health, but still some are just to be expected. I (Martia) turned around the other day and saw a big tarantula on the kitchen floor. It was nice Tim was close by to take care of it. As I was typing this, Rebecca opened the door and a centipede ran in. Her piano books were the closest weapon to bring an end to its journey.

Seminary classes started March 1st and are going well. We praise the Lord for five new students God is calling to study and further prepare for fulltime ministry. The attached picture of the single young men was taken at the opening service for the semester. Francisco and Espedito are from Campina Grande who have previously taken part in some of the seminary extension classes there. Jailson has written music for the young people's music conference which focused on putting the themes of Philippians and Colossians into music. Timoteo is a quiet young man from the last church we assisted. Francisco Cavalcante(not pictured) is a married student who has been pastoring a church in a nearby town and has wanted to attend the seminary for several years. His family is unable to move onto campus due to other responsibilities, but he stays on campus during the week and then goes home for the weekend. Pray for him in this special challenge.

Many of you have been praying for Gisele who graduated Nov. 2015. for God's clear direction for her. Praise the Lord! She has rented an apartment nearby. On weekends she continues to serve in Santo Antonio church and their two young church plants. She also has been helping get Cubbies going at the Satelite Church here in Natal. She has started teaching Bible classes at a preschool on Mondays. She teaches the same story 8 different sessions. There are some other possible schools that she may open up also (public schools). She has been a help also in the area of ordering Christian women books to be available at ladies retreat.

This weekend is ladies retreat for the area churches. Pray that this time will be a time of spiritual refreshment and edification to each of the ladies who attends. Our church, Satelite, is responsible for the organization of the ladies retreat this time. Pray that each of the ladies helping would work together in unity and full of joy serving the Lord from the heart.

We are enjoying a visit from Tim's parents. Tim's dad will be teaching Leviticus and Hebrews as a module class next week. Natalie, Rebecca, and Rachel will be spending next week in Recife at an MK retreat. Pray that this will be a wholesome fun time getting to know the other Brazilian MK's better from our mission and be a time of encouragement and spiritual edification. Thank you for many of you who specifically remember each of our children in your prayers for their spiritual growth and God's leading in their lives that they continue to love and serve God with all their heart wherever and however that may be. Attached is a picture of Rachel’s birthday. She chose to have acai instead of cake. Acai is a berry from the Amazon that has become popular here. Most people eat it as a frozen dessert with different toppings such as bananas, sweetened condensed milk, and granola.

Prayer

  • Ladies retreat April 8-9
  • Robert Franklin teach module class April 11-15
  • MK retreat in Recife April 11-15
  • New students: Francisco, Espedito, Timoteo, Jailson, Francisco Cavalcante
  • Gisele teaching in public schools
  • The Franklin girls in their studies and spiritual life

 

February 18, 2016

We have arrived safely in Natal, Brazil. We left Burney, Ca at 11:45 pm on Wed. Feb. 10th and arrived at the Bible School in Natal about 46 hours later. We are staying at the guest apartment at the Bible School while we get things cleaned up and organized at our house around the corner. Tim has had the job of making sure all of our household “machinery”(i.e. water pump, washing machine, stove, oven refrigerator, dishwasher are in working order. We thank the Lord for many who helped do some of the heavy cleaning before we arrived and also for some of the students who are helping these days. Hopefully we can get moved in in the next few days so Tim can focus on getting ready for classes which start March 1st. Hannah has had lots of time to get back into Portuguese as she gets to play with her friends at Bible school while we are on campus. We definitely feel the difference in the climate. It has been hot and humid as it usually is, but we are just getting used to it again. It is good to be back and we have enjoyed reuniting with our brothers and sisters in Christ. Last night the students came over with a cake singing “Happy Birthday” to Martia. Thanks again for praying for us during this time of transition.

February 10, 2016

Time is quickly approaching for our return to Brazil. We plan to leave Feb. 11 from Sacramento, CA to arrive in Brazil with two weeks for preparation at the Bible school to start. These days leading up to departure include:

  • getting clearances from mission headquarters
  • spending last times with loved ones and saying “goodbyes”
  • packing our suitcases and storing our winter things

When we arrive, our focus will be on:

  • getting our minds & tongues back into Portuguese
  • cleaning up our house from 7 mo. of dust, mold and critters.
  • getting classes ready to teach at the Bible school
  • reuniting with our fellow Brazilians at church and Bible school
  • getting back into steady homeschool routine

We value your prayers for us always, but especially during this time of transition as it is a potentially stressful, emotional time. We need, as always, to be walking in the Spirit and just as Paul prayed for the Colossian believers, to be: filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That (we) might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfullness.; Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light.” (Col.1:9-12)

We would love for you to include these rich requests in your prayers for us and the Brazilian believers, as we also desire and pray these things for you.

We praise the Lord for the opportunity to give a ministry report in 37 churches during these 31 weeks of stateside ministry and for safe travels over 25,000 miles. Thank the LORD for His provision of transportation and safety on the road.  It has been a blessing to be with many of you face to face. Thank you for your words of encouragement, friendship, hospitality, prayers, and generous gifts. You are such a vital part of our lives and the work in Brazil. We think of the work ahead and are excited and humbled to be a part of it. We praise the Lord for the freedom, the open field in Brazil. We look forward to this 4th term of service in Brazil:

  • Teaching at the seminary helping equip our fellow Brazilians for more effective ministry.
  • Helping the Serrinha Congregation with an auditorium
  • Assisting the new church plant in Flores do Campo
  • Blessing the believers through the Books and Bibles project (“Books for Brazilians”).

Speaking of which, here is summary of the past term:  290 sets of Wiersbe’s 6-vol commentary distributed to pastors and Christian workers throughout Brazil; in addition to 500 study Bibles, 3,500 Bibles and 3,000 books related to Bible study and Christian living.  Rejoice in the LORD for the many people involved in making this ministry happen, especially those who fund the project.  Through you the LORD enabled us to purchase the Wiersbe commentary that retails for one month’s wage and make it available to a pastor for four days’ worth of wages.  This means that for less than twenty-five dollars a Brazilian pastor can be blessed with a theologically sound “piece of machinery” for God’s harvest field.

November 28, 2015

We have much to be thankful for as we reflect on who God is and what he has done. We just invite you to share in these Thanksgiving reflections.

Thank You Lord...

For Salvation in Jesus Christ. For being adopted into the family of God. That our sins are forgiven. For sending the Holy Spirit to be your continual presence in our lives. For your steadfast love  that never ceases. For the sufficiency of your Word to equip us for every good work. The refuge we find in you that is certain and strong. For your mercies that are new every morning. For the difficulties that you allow into our lives that cause us to cling to you more. That you have promised to never leave us or forsake us. That you have called us to be your ambassadors. That you have committed to us the Ministry of Reconciliation. That you allowed us to grow up in Christian homes and be a part of solid churches with Biblical teaching. That we have had the privilege to grow up in a free country. For physical provision our whole lives. We’ve never had to go to bed hungry for lack of food. For some of our grandparents that have been solid Christians and have faithfully prayed for us. For the opportunity we had to go to Bible college. For the blessing of our four girls you’ve entrusted into our care that they love you and are growing in their walk with you. For good health. For provision for vehicle repairs this past year. For the faithful support and prayers of so many for the work in Brazil. For the provision, through your people, for return to the field. For the awesome privilege to be a part in equipping the saints for the work of the ministry in Natal. That you allow us to be a part of your work even though it is your power which does it. For the group of students at the Bible College who are serious about studying the Word and are diligently serving you. For Magno and Eliakim as they graduate that they will be able to devote fulltime to the ministry  now. For Gisele who is graduating and is willing to go where God wants her to go. That even though she doesn’t know where, we can trust that you know and you will lead step by step. For your provision for Raphael and Celia these years of Bible College. For the healthy pregnancy for Celia and the twin boys you are entrusting to them. For your provision for Davi and Cathi  Costa and family to spend school break in the states.  For the religious freedom we have in Brazil and the openness of the people to your Word. For the lives and testimonies of many of our brothers and sisters in Christ in persecuted countries. For a full schedule of opportunities to share about the work in Brazil.  For safe travels this furlough. For times with family. For the hospitality of many towards us.

October 22, 2015

Stateside Ministry

Thank you for praying for our family as we are here in the states sharing our ministry to churches. We praise the Lord for safe travels over 10,000 miles and 16 churches. Along with presenting the ministry of Brazil, Tim has been preaching in the book of Acts. We are challenged by the example of the early disciples in their courage and boldness to preach the Word even in the backdrop of persecution.

“…and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.” Acts 4:31

Pray that God’s people would be confident in the sufficiency of Scripture and be bold to preach God’s Word while there is freedom and when persecution comes as well.

Family Time

We have had many good times with family and friends on the California Coast, Lassen Park, The Grand Canyon, Crater Lake, and The Puget Sound. It’s been fun to do some things that we don’t do in Brazil like camping, riding bikes, picking blackberries, hunting, canning and drying fruit, and pressing apples. We celebrated Natalie’s 18th Birthday with family. Pray for her as she seeks to finish her high school studies this year and seeks God’s direction in her life. She had the opportunity to stay a few weeks with Grandma Linda Franklin who suffered a stroke in Aug. Natalie was a big help in many ways including driving Grandma around places. We praise the Lord that Grandma has made good recovery.

Bible Students in Brazil

We thank you also for remembering the Bible School students as they study God’s Word and prepare for ministry. Pray for them in areas of health, finances, family relationships, ability to understand and assimilate the things they are studying in class, spiritual empowering in the ministries in which they are serving. Pray especially for those graduating the end of Nov.:

  • Raphael & Celia will serve full time at a congregation where they have been serving;  also expecting twins.
  • Magno plans to devote full time to the Serrinha church congregation where he has been ministering.
  • Eliakim is waiting on the LORD’s leading in missionary work in Brazil
  • Gisele is open for what God has for her, but uncertain where that will be.

The four or more years that students spend in seminary are very challenging, and there are moments the students wonder if they’ll make it. Yet these years are rich years in fellowship with the Bible school family, in focused  study of God’s Word, and in a safe, pleasant environment. During these years of formal study, their weekends are full with practical ministries. So when it comes time to graduate there is a mix of feelings.  It is an exciting time looking forward to full time ministry, yet there are often feelings of the sadness of leaving the Bible school family and sometimes uncertainty of where God wants them next. Pray for these in their last two months of studies that they would finish well in their studies and that God would help them in this strategic transition to full time ministry. These years of studies give a good foundation for a lifetime of learning. They equip the students with tools to study, teach, and minister, but they do not learn everything. There is much more they face in ministry. We pray that they can put to practice what they learn and continue to grow and depend on God for all they need for the ministry.  Bible college is a great place to meet one’s life partner, and we praise the Lord for Davi and Sara who both are focused on serving the Lord together. They will be married in Dec.

September 25, 2015

Dear praying friends,

We thank the Lord for the safe travels and good fellowship with 12 churches so far in our time in the states. We thank the Lord for the hospitality of so many who have shared a meal or their home with us. It encourages us to see the interest of the work in Brazil shown in picking up a prayer card to pray for us, giving towards the work, or the words, “we are praying for you”, or “keep the prayerletters coming”. We know each one of you are busy, and it means a lot to know you take time to pray for us and find out what is going on in this little corner of God’s harvest field of Brazil.

As we are able we try to keep in contact with our fellow believers in Brazil. Last week when we talked to Sara and Lygia by Skype, Sara said that 80 children attended AWANA at the Heights Baptist Church(which is closest to the seminary) We praise the Lord for this ministry that is growing and reaching a very needy (spiritually and financially) neighborhood. Recently one of our students sent her testimony, and we want to share it with you as it gives a glimpse into one of the lives of the Bible College students and it is another story of God’s abundant mercy in a lost soul. We hope also tha it may encourage you in the opportunities you have to reach out to lost around you also.  Dalva (see attached picture) is in her third year of seminary and is serving in various ways in her local church. She has persevered in spite of her family trying to discourage her from studying at the Bible school and  in spite of her own difficulty with book learning.

Testimony of Maria Dalva Silva

1985 was a very sad time for my family and me because of the death of our mother Maria das Dores. Six months later we moved from Mossoro, where I had been born and raised, to the new city of Natal where I came to know Jesus as my savior.

My parents were farmers, uneducated, and illiterate. When my mom married my dad Jose Sobrinho he had already been married and widowed when his first wife died in childbirth. They had no living children although 4 had died as young babies. My mom with my dad had 20 children together, but only raised 6 (as the others had died as babies). My siblings are as follows:

Francisca married Jeronimo and they have 4 children, today with only 3, as 1 died last year without Christ in Sao Paulo.

Ivanete married Claudio who died one month after he made a decision for Christ at Santa Catarina church(one of our area churches). She didn’t remarry and has 3 children living in Mossoro.

Luciano is single and lives in Natal.

Lucia is single and lives in Mossoro and Natal.

Roberto is single and lives in Sao Paulo. He made a decision for Christ, but just keeps falling into sin.

On June 6, 1985, my 59 year old mom died when she stopped breathing. She was asthmatic. She was a very dedicated mother and homemaker. She was extremely caring and protective of her children. She would serve up the plates of all her children. She was very clean. She wasn’t a woman who liked to live in other people’s homes unless it was necessary. I was very close to her and she to me. My dad was a hard worker, very honest, but not very talkative with the family. I believe the lack of conversation was harmful to our development. My dad came from a family which was abandoned by their mom. I only know this of his family. I grew up in a family in which my dad just gave a look without words and it was known very well what was being “said”. There were many rules, and my parents never received an education that taught the benefits of hugging, showing affection, and conversing with the family yet, even though they were without this knowledge I loved them how they were. My family is Catholic/Spiritist. This is a little of my biological family.

We arrived in Natal on Dec. 25, 1985. This move had been my dad’s dream since 1963 when they had lived in Ceara Mirim (a nearby town of Natal) for 6 months. Because my mom was an asthmatic we didn’t go to Natal right then since it was a bit colder. Mossoro has hot weather which was a little better for my moms health.

I Dalva, very single, never have had a relationship with anyone. When we moved to Natal, I went to study the next year at Varela Barca School that was close to home. In the class I met Sister Dorinha, brother Ageu’s wife, that today attends Heights Baptist Church. She was the person that befriended me even though friendship was a difficult thing for me. Dorinha was friendly and attentive. She treated everyone equal and only spoke of pleasant things. I believe she was  a lady of prayer. She didn’t miss any opportunity when we were together in class to speak to me about Jesus. She was always inviting me to go to church and encouraging me to read the Bible at home. I decided to read the Bible. I started in Genesis and became spellbound with the story of creation. I was also needing comfort because of the loss of my mother and the move to a new city. In these moments of Bible reading, I cried so much. I don’t know why. I tried to read when I was at home.

One day Dorinha came with sister Luzia to my house to invite me to a church conference. I think I went to two conferences. In 1992 I made my decision at an evangelistic conference. The pastors of the church were Pastor Dick Matthews and Pastor Jonas. God has been so merciful to me. It is very difficult to walk alone with Christ when my family doesn’t know the truth, but even then, God has sustained me (Phil. 1:6) The verses that I learned right away were John 14:6 and Heb. 4:12.

One day soon  after my conversion Pastor Dick came to me and encouraged me to start reading the book of John.  I wondered who had told him that I had already decided to read the book of John. I was invited to work in the children’s ministry at church and still continue today. I was an AWANA leader for a time, Sunday School secretary, and church secretary some time ago.  I still have much to learn to honor and glorify the Lord Jesus Christ. When the Bible school  was in Tirol(the old campus on the other side of town) I went to Bible school open house to attend a sample class by Pastor Dick. I always wanted to learn more of God’s Word and felt the desire to study at the Bible school, but there was little strength. I also had to work to help out at home although I’ve never liked working outside the home. In 2005 the desire to study at Bible school  returned, but it wasn’t until 2012 with Pastor Walter’s encouragement  that I enrolled in Bible school fulltime. It has been difficult, yet it has been very good to learn more.  I’m going to carry what I’m studying for the rest of my life and with God’s help I want to put it into practice. (Numbers 14;24)

I’ve shared many difficult moments with my brothers and sisters in Christ, and God always brings the answer. Up to now God has never failed in my life. (John 16:33) I thank God for my pastor: Pastor Walter, a man greatly used of God, a man of prayer; for my beloved church that holds me up in prayer, financial support, and monthly food. At seminary I have parents in the faith. I thank god for their lives. I thank the teachers for their patience and mercy given by God for putting up with me as their student. I thank God for coming into His family and being His child in Christ Jesus.

Praise the LORD together with us for

  • Good recovery for Tim’s mom Linda Franklin from her stroke.
  • Safe travels and provision for mechanic work on vehicle
  • The fellowship with God’s people in North America
  • Renewed contact with many relatives
  • Natalie’s mile stone of turning 18

Please Pray

    • For Seminary students graduating in Nov. to finish well; clear direction for next step: Eliakim, Magno, Gisele, and Rafael
    • That God would add churches and individuals to our prayer support base
    • That God would provide for our financial needs to return to our field of service
    • For the salvation of our unsaved relatives

Thank you for continuing to remember our family in your prayers as we serve during furlough ministry. And continue to pray for the work in Brazil at the seminary and the local churches.

August 17, 2015

Blessed be the LORD for His safety and sustenance.

Hi, this is Tim writing this time.  Usually Martia writes our ministry updates.  She does a good job for which I thank the LORD.

Mom’s health

Many of you have heard that my mom (Linda Franklin) had a stroke Sunday about ten days ago (Aug 2) so here’s a brief review and update.  By the time they were able to identify the clot it had dissolved, having been somewhere in the heart.  The medical prognosis is very good.  She has been doing therapy for speech and for motor skills.  My sister Ellen flew in from Brazil on Tuesday and yesterday mom was released from the hospital and will continue therapy from home.  She feels well and is pretty sure in walking and use of her hands.  Still is working on fine coordination (writing) and some speech—three syllable words require extra effort and there are more two-syllable combinations that are tongue-twisters.  Thank you all for you concern and prayers for all of us.  Many of you have a part in our ministry since mom and dad were in Brazil and we appreciate God’s work together.  We also thank the LORD for continued sustenance—keeping loved ones so that we can continue to serve on the field.

Furlough Travel

As it relates to our furlough travels.  We are looking forward to meeting up and renewing contact with many of you.  However, we NEED YOUR HELP—unless we hear directly from you or see you listed on the financial reports from the mission we don’t know what part you have in our lives.  God does and that is the most important.  He works through prayer.  But as we try to organize our travels, please let us know how we can meet up.  The next few weeks we plan to be in CA.  Mid Sept –mid October mostly Utah.  November eastern WA-ID.  Dec-Jan in CA again.  We hope to be in WA again in Feb as we pray and trust the LORD to provide for our return to the field.

Praise the LORD

  • For His protection and sustenance
  • For Helping bring our schedule together
  • For mom’s recovery thus far.

Please pray for

  • God’s protection in travels
  • God’s sustenance in our family (including our children as we are traveling so much)
  • God’s blessing upon those we meet up with
  • God’s provision of support to return to the field
July 26, 2015

We are all together as a family now since July 9th. Our first furlough meetings have been at First Baptist Church of Maxwell, CA and Community Bible Church of Cave Junction, OR. We praise the Lord for safe travels, warm welcomes, and Christian fellowship. It is a blessing to hear, “we pray for you and your family.” Thank you to each of you who have a part. It is so important. God sees and rewards- not that we really even need anything more than the blessing to be in fellowship with Him. We have enjoyed a family camp trip with Martia’s side of the family on the California Coast. The girls have enjoyed renewing friendships and going on several bike rides in the mountains of Burney, CA. Saturday we will head up to Gig Harbor, Washington to our sending church where we will be the VBS missionary this next week. We’d appreciate prayers for safe travels during these coming weeks.

Praise the LORD together with us for

  • Being able to wrap up most our responsibilities on the field
  • Safe travels
  • The fellowship with God’s people in North America
  • Renewed contact with many relatives

Please pray

  • That God would add churches and individuals to our prayer support base
  • That God would provide for our financial needs to return to our field of service
  • For the salvation of our unsaved relatives

Thank you for continuing to remember our family in your prayers as we serve during furlough ministry. And continue to pray for the work in Brazil at the seminary and the local churches.

February 17, 2015

Special Visitors from the States

We are enjoying Tim's parents Robert and Linda Franklin and two young people from Burney, CA, Philip and Charity Hennessey, being here for a few weeks. Philip has spent most of the time traveling with Robert and getting a firsthand perspective on ministry opportunities here in NE Brazil as Robert has spoken in various churches and a Bible College. The rest of us have spent most of the time at home with normal close-to-home ministry and a break from studies for the girls. We also spent a couple days enjoying some beautiful ocean beaches in our neighboring state of Paraiba with a Brazilian pastor and his family (Pastor Roberio one of the recent seminary graduates) Tim's main focus has been making good preparations for the coming semester which starts the first week of March.

VBS at Igreja Batista do Alto (Heights Baptist Church)

Last week Martia and the girls helped with VBS. Charity shared her skill of making special balloon creatures. The kids were delighted to each take one home on the last day. Heights Baptist Church isn't the church we regularly attend, but it is a regular Baptist church that is right next to the seminary, and in close walking distance. The first day started with 44 children in attendance. The second day 70 children arrived. Although the starting age was 4 years old, the second day many older siblings brought their 1-2 year old siblings. Next year there's talk of providing nursery also, as many of the older ones have the responsibility of their younger siblings and can't come unless they bring the younger ones, yet aren't able to fully concentrate or participate with the babies. We praise the Lord for the good attendance and the seeds that have been planted. AWANA will soon start up and we pray many of these children will be reached with the gospel and grow through the teaching of God's Word. We pray that this will open doors of opportunity into families as well.

Church Retreats

This weekend of Carnaval when most of Brazil openly celebrates “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life”, many believers meet together away from this celebration for fellowship and spiritual refreshment as well as wholesome fun and food. Tim's dad is speaking at Amopaz camp, an oceanside church camp near Mossoro about five hours from Natal, that Tim enjoyed as a boy. Rebecca, Rachel, Charity, and Philip went along to hear Grandpa speak and give company.

One of our sister churches is without a pastor as of December so Pastor Rubens, Tim, and others are giving support through teaching and preaching. Sunday Tim started teaching in the book of James for Sunday School. There was a very good response. Afterwards he talked quite a while with a family who was visiting for the third time, especially explaining the gospel. Pray for the salvation of this family: Jose, Francisca, and Henrique (12 yrs.).  We spent the rest of the day at our church Satelite. Tim spoke at Candelaria, another sister church for the evening service. Our neighborhood is fairly peaceful at this time so we've chosen to stick tight and get some things done here at home. Pray for Tim as he works on seminary class preparations. He also continues to meet with Sr. Batista for a Bible study.

June 29, 2014

Last week of the semester

This is the last day of the semester and the students have been working diligently day and night to prepare for final exams  and to complete all their assignments. We thank the Lord for a good semester and for this group of students who love and serve the Lord. Some will be heading home, and some will stay on campus during this month-long semester break. Pray for them as they continue to serve in their churches. Pray for them for physical and spiritual refreshment during this time. Pray also for the seminary board meeting which will be held on Saturday that all the planning and decisions will be done  in sound wisdom and the guidance of the Holy Spirit.  

Music Conference

The Satelite Church young people put on a music conference several weeks ago. Over one hundred young people were in attendance. The theme was Christ reflected in the life of the worshiper. We praise the Lord for the vision and diligence that our young people put into planning and putting on this conference and the help and cooperation of the whole church body. The young people are eager to make this a yearly event. Special music was presented by each of the churches' young people. One special was presented by the little people. Hannah played the piano for her friends Ana Julia and Rebecca Costa singing Jesus loves me.  Natalie and Rebecca also  participated in singing and playing the piano. If you would like to see some of these specials you may click the links below.

For Rebecca playing the piano for Natalie and Ariel singing “The Cross”:
Click for Video

   

For Natalie and Jessica singing “Worthy of Praise”:
Click for Video

 

For Hannah and Alana playing piano for Rebecca Costa and Ana Julia singing “Jesus loves me”:
Click for Video

World cup soccer games

We have been enjoying watching the world cup soccer games. If you go to “The World at our Front Door” on Facebook you can see the tract that is being distributed and read more about this special international evangelistic ministry. It was specifically designed  for sharing the gospel with people visiting Brazil from many different countries during the world cup. Some of the Baptist churches have taken part in passing out tracts before the games near the stadiums.  Pray for the people who are receiving these tracts that are being distributed in various languages that the message of Salvation will take root in people's lives who read them or that seeds will be planted.  Several games were held here in Natal's newly built stadium. The preparations for the games have made it difficult to get around town at times and have been a motive for some to make big protests, so hopefully now that games are done in Natal the projects can be finished and things maybe will settle down. Other games throughout Brazil continue through to the end of July.

Homeschool and family

Yeah! Hannah finished 1st grade This week! Attached are recent portraits of the girls.  

Thank you for continuing to remember our family and the work here in Brazil in your prayers.

May 27, 2014

We were blessed with a two month visit from Tim’s parents Robert and Linda beginning in February. They had a full schedule of speaking opportunities. Although we didn’t do sightseeing, we did enjoy many meals, family devotions, their 45th anniversary, and a few birthdays: Rebecca’s 15th, Rachel’s 13th, and Martia’s.

First semester of Seminary is almost over. Classes are going well with a positive campus life. This year we have more families: Moises & Zelia with Aline(9) and Alane(4); Laercio & Teresa; Adriano & Maria Jose with Lucas(7) and Ester(3); Davy and Cathi with Rebecca(6) & expecting. It has been a nice addition to have children on campus. A little play area was built with a swing, see-saw, and slide. Tim teaches O.T. Survey 1, 1 Corinthians and Dispensationalism.  There were 3 weeklong modules taught by visiting teachers: Anita Swedberg taught Music in the church; Mark Swedberg taught Advanced homiletics; and Robert Franklin taught Leviticus-Hebrews. Our seminary retreat was held at Bom Fim Lake camp May 8-10 and was a nice break from the routine. Pr. Pedro Quintiliano spoke from Luke 5 giving a challenge to remember our calling. As always, retreat was a meaningful time of spiritual challenge, conversations, sun, sand, food, swimming, games, and relaxation. Many also enjoyed their fill of mangoes and pitombas.

At church, there were 50 in attendance for Mother’s Day breakfast. We praise the Lord for the safe arrival of Estevan, born to Pastor Rubens and Mellyne. One of our ladies Marilene has been having a Bible study with her 80 yr. old Catholic neighbor Penra. Pray for her salvation. Pray for our young people as they study in various areas that they would be strong in the Lord and seek God’s guidance in every decision. The joint church retreat between Satelite and Igapo went well.  Six people were baptized.  These two churches are praying and seeking God’s leading concerning planting a church. We are looking forward to being a part of this work.  Please pray for the steps towards that.

What does a baby church look like?

Several years ago our supporters gave an initial amount to purchase property for a joint church plant under the leadership of Pr. Erinaldo.  Many, many work days later we started services in the town of Upper Serrinha.  This past weekend four believers from the congregation were baptized; two of them being a husband and wife.  Magno, a third year seminary student, does his practical ministry there and some time after he graduates will probably become the pastor, unless God leads otherwise.  Like a human baby, a church plant often starts with little more than a dream/prayer.  We’re there again and want to include you.  Here are a few details:

  • target area: the triangle between highway 101 and 406 (map about here: -5.7526,-35.3098).
  • a rapidly growing part of town on the way to the new airport.  Prices continue to rise.
  • both churches have believers ready to serve: professionals who volunteer their skills and mature believers ready to minister, including seminarians.  We are ready to go.
  • Please pray that the LORD would provide enough to spark this candle (Rev 1:20).

Prayer Requests

  • Protection: spiritual and physical
  • Progress in home school 
  • Provision for the church plant 
  • Effective ministry at seminary
April 5, 2014

New family members

We praise the Lord for two new members in the family of God: Marcos and Ana Julia. Ana Julia (7) comes from a Christian home and Sunday night she realized that being part of a Christian family didn't automatically make her part of God's family. She realized she needed to personally trust Jesus as her Savior. Marcos’ mom Carmi is one of Satelite church's long time members. He became a member of God's family on Sunday night as well. Please pray for these two to grow in their walk with the Lord.

“…There is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.” Luke15:10

Family visit

Our visit with Tim’s parents is coming to an end. It has been nice to be together as a family. During this time Rebecca turned 15, Rachel 13, and Martia one year older. Tim's parents also celebrated their 45th wedding anniversary. They have had a full schedule of ministry with multiple conferences and Bible College classes. Tim's dad also ministered in a conference in Bolivia during this time. Pray for them as they take the flight home to Roosevelt, UT on Monday April 7 and get settled into their routine after being here for 2 months. The weather is quite a contrast (at the moment 85 degrees Natal to 43 degrees in Roosevelt).

Seminary Family

The seminary year is going well. Continue to pray for Tim as he teaches. One of the new classes he is teaching this semester is “dispensationalism”. Continue to pray for each of the students and professors. A kid’s play area has been built at the seminary. It is so nice to have families here on campus this year. There are six on-campus children and one on the way. Davy and Cathi Costa are expecting a new little one. It has been a blessing to have them here at seminary. Pray for them as Davy studies, as they work through the Brazilian documentation for Cathi, and as they decide on doctor care for her pregnancy. Rebecca Costa and our Hannah have just latched onto each other as best friends wanting to dress alike and wanting to spend every waking and sleeping moment. Hannah is enjoying a friend her age to speak English with.

Thank you for prayerticipating in the service of the LORD, 
Tim and Martia and Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

January 8, 2014

Greetings in our Savior,

“Rejoice in the Lord, o ye righteous:for praise is comely for the upright.” Ps.33:1 
We thank the Lord for a new year to serve the Lord and grow in Him. Thank you for praying and giving so we can serve here in Brazil.

Birthday Parties

We attended birthday parties for six people in the past several weeks. Brazilians especially go big for 1st and 15th birthdays, but these celebrations also included a 2nd, 3rd, 7th, and 90th . They sure are talented in putting on parties. The believers often use these special occasions to give testimony of God's goodness and to present the gospel to unsaved friends and relatives present. We praise the Lord for their desire to see their loved ones come to know the truth. Pray for those who have once again been given the opportunity to put their trust in Jesus as Savior.

One of the birthday parties was for our Pastor Ruben's daughter Sophia who turned one year old. His dad is one of Sophia's doting Grandpas. Many years ago Rubens and his two sisters got saved and then this year his mom. We have been praying for his dad's salvation. He has come to services once in a while. Sometimes I wondered if he only came to see Sophia as on several occasions he would have so much fun taking care of her during the message. At her birthday party and then the church cantata, I noticed the same thing. During the message he took the chance to walk around with Sophia. Well, on Sunday Jan. 5, he raised his hand during the invitation to be saved. There were many tears and smiles of joy. Praise the Lord that their family is complete in the Lord. Pray for Pastor Ruben's parents as they grow in their walk with the Lord. (See attached picture of Pastor Rubens and family with parents and sister.)

New Seminary students

Seminary will start back in and we are expecting several new families. There haven't been any children for a couple of years at seminary so this is pretty exciting, especially for Hannah as she will have some playmates that live close by. Valber and Derezvania are returning students from a few years ago who settled onto campus in November. They have 1yr. Old Kezia (see attached photo). Moises has taken some classes and he is continuing chemotherapy for cancer treatment. He and his wife Zelia and his two girls are moving on campus in January. Davy and Cathi Costa are coming the end of January all the way from Washington. Davi is Brazilian and he met and married Cathi (Jakubiak) as she served as an ABWE single missionary in Portugal. They have 6 year old Rebecca. Adriano has taken a few classes the past year, and is coming full time with his family also. Pray for these new families as well as others who may come as they make this transition to seminary campus life. It is a step of faith for God’s provision, and requires special diligence in focusing on studies, as well as keeping up with ministry and family.

Church Baptism

Vinicios started attending Satelite church last year, and Manoel one of Satelite's longtime members led him to the Lord. He has been discipled this year by Pastor Rubens and in December he was baptized along with Wesley. Wesley has attended Satelite since he was very young along with his grandparents. This year he expressed desire to be baptized. Last weekend he went out with the young people to pass out tracts and invite people to church. He was pretty pleased to have distributed 25 of his 30 tracts. This past weekend when Tim taught the seminary extension class in Campina Grande, he invited Wesley to come along. Pray for these young men in their spiritual growth and testimony.

Church cantata

32 of the church members were involved in the cantata. We sang the cantata “Born to Die”. There was a good turnout of neighbors, friends and family. Thank the Lord with us for the good involvement by the church members and the good outreach to those who visited. Pray that the message would keep coming back to the hearts and minds of those who heard.

Annnual Regular Baptist Church meetings

Tim will be doing 2 sessions at the meetings this week. The meetings will be held out at our church camp at Bom Fim Lake from Wed. Jan 8-Sat Jan. 11. Pray that the meetings will go well and that God would bless the time with good fellowship. Pray also for profitable times of study in the Word and worship together in the unity of the Spirit.

Thank you for prayerticipating in the service of the LORD,

Tim and Martia and Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

December 5, 2013

Seminary Graduation

Seminary graduation was held November 29. We praise the Lord for four students who completed their 4 year Biblical Studies degree: Carlos Jr., Aaron, Pr. Helio and Gisele. Each have been actively serving in their churches. Gisele will stay on 2 more years for missions preparation. Aaron is serving as Pastor along with his wife Isabel in the interior town of Monte Alegre located a couple hours away. Carlos Jr. along with his wife Lais has been serving at the Heights Baptist Church which is neighbor to the seminary. He is a very gifted leader and servant of the Lord, and has also been the seminary director’s right hand man. Lais, Isabel, Lygia, and Tanya received their 2 year Certificate in Biblical Studies.

Visit from Martia’s Family

We are so thankful that Martia’s mom, sister Roxi, and three of Roxi’s children were able to come to Brazil for a month. Wednesday we saw them off at the airport for their return to the USA. It was a full month with an extra big table set up for meals, many trips to the beach, a visit to the aquarium, a visit to the zoo, playing Bananagrams, Tabu, and Scattergories, putting together jigsaw puzzles, seminary graduation, a Brazilian wedding. Roxi served joyfully with her skill as a professional photographer. The Brazilian believers were so friendly and many special friendships were made at church and at the seminary. There certainly is the barrier of the language that makes it hard to understand the church services, but many of the Brazilians who know some English were able to put in some good practice. We were proud of the family for trying out lots of words in Portuguese. We thank the Lord for the harmony and the experiences we shared together during this month.

Thank the Lord for protection

We especially thank the Lord for His protection on our family on Thanksgiving Day. We actually had our special meal together the day before since the seminary graduation banquet was on Thursday. We decided to go to one of the close beaches for a couple of hours in the morning. Tim stayed to administer a final exam for his Genesis class. Natalie also stayed to take the Genesis final as she had taken this one class throughout the semester. While the rest of us nine were at the beach, our camera was snatched out of Rebecca’s hands with a proud comment “you lost it”. A few minutes later a young man lunged for the camera around Roxi’s neck. Five of us were right close by and did what we could to try to protect her. We were left with a few bloody noses, a twisted ankle, fat lips, a punched stomach, two black eyes, bruises, and a few other things including the camera. We are grateful that the three youngest of our group were not in the middle of the action. Julie(11) showed some quick wisdom and motherly instinct as she grabbed her brother Jon(3) and took him away from the action. The police caught the guy and we spent the rest of the day at the police office filing a report. Since he was underage at 17 he had expedited process to get released. We are reminded of our dependence on God for protection, and we are thankful for the many things He has impressed upon us through this event. This type of thing is happening more and more here, although at gun point. Pray for the Lord to reach into the lives of individuals and change their lives through the teaching of God’s Word. Pray for protection and wisdom for us and for all our Brazilian brothers and sisters in Christ. Through this event we are also reminded of persecuted Christians in other countries that suffer for the cause of the Gospel every day, and have no hope for help from the police. Pray for them to have special courage and endurance as they stay true to Christ. We are also reminded that this world is not our home; we’re just a passin’ through. We look forward to someday where there won’t be these dangers of wicked people. In the mean time we don’t want to live in fear, but trusting the Lord even more.

Psalm 9:9-10 The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee; for thou, Lord, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.

Upcoming Events

The seminary year has come to a close, yet Tim still has papers and tests to correct and grades to finish up. Friday and Saturday he will be teaching the extension class in Campina Grande. Pray for safety and alertness as he travels, and for blessing on the teaching and learning of the class. The following weekend Tim will speak at a weekend conference in Mossoro 4 hours away. Four of us in the family are singing in the Christmas cantata “Born to Die”. It is Rachel’s first time to participate. The weekly responsibilities at church continue as well. Thank you so much for you who pray and give so we can be here to serve.

October 23, 2013

A few months ago a woman in our Nenagh fellowship felt prompted to respond to the ongoing reports of believers across the globe suffering for their faith at the hands of authorities and those wanting to discredit the gospel. Reports of these tragic incidents come all too frequently; perhaps you have been troubled by this as well. As she discussed this with others an idea took shape; one which our Irish partner Matt Tuttlebee encouraged.

He supported her idea to orchestrate a local gathering focused on this worldwide injustice; inviting the community to desire God’s justice and mercy for those in desperate circumstances over their love for Jesus. Two weeks ago nearly 60 people assembled in ‘The Hatchery’ building (Nenagh Baptist Church) on a Saturday afternoon to promote prayer and resources for the persecuted church. The church building only has 50 chairs! An Asia church planter detailed the plight of the persecuted church there, drawing attention also to opportunities for the gospel that result. Persistence in prayer was the capstone of the day.

As we relished the passion and power of this, another thing came to mind. The woman who originally voiced her concern and worked with others to see this gathering happen, was one of six baptized here two years ago. She, along with others of that group display growth that feeds into the church planting process here. The Lord is moving this small fellowship along as individuals and families find ways to respond as they mature in the Lord. One day (maybe sooner than we think) we’ll not be needed here. Please pray with us to that end.

On our health front, Dean continues healing from a September surgery addressing a malignant tumor in the left calf. This started out as a shock, but we are being drawn into thankfulness that we’ve been able to receive high quality care while continuing to work in County Tipperary. This week will initiate a six week stint of radiation treatments (Monday - Friday each week). The experts say this is a tolerable (usually with minimal side-effects) and effective follow-up treatment for this rare muscle cancer; so that it is unlikely to return. May the experts be right! We must ‘let go’ and trust the Lord who is not surprised or anxious – His arms never stop holding us.

Praise & Prayer

  • Co-worker Tim Laughlin - he is assuming Dean’s responsibilities as ABWE country coordinator
  • The persecuted church worldwide as our Lord Jesus continues building His church (Matt. 16:18)
  • Steve Mann (ABWE England) – recently appointed Regional Administrator for Western Europe
  • Healthy growing disciples in the Nenagh fellowship that love and serve the community well
  • Provision for the weeks of radiation treatments leading to returned health
October 22, 2013

We thank the Lord for the opportunity for Tim to teach a week-long module class on the book of Leviticus in south Brazil in Curitiba in September. One of our seminary students Eliakim accompanied Tim, and got to experience “the cold”.

We thank the Lord for frequent visitors at church.

We thank the Lord for an upcoming baptism of two of our young people Wesley and Vinicios.

The Planalto Congregation led by Pastor Henrique celebrated their 2 year anniversary on Sunday.

Classes have continued as normal besides two module classes Christian Ethics and The Christian Home taught by visiting teachers.

Pray for a safe trip to Campina Grande Oct.25-27 for Tim as he teaches for the extension class

Oct. 28th our family will fly to Rio Branco, Acre. Tim will speak at 2 conferences. We will participate in the “Wiersbe project” delivering Wiersbe commentaries to several pastors in the area traveling as far as Bolivia. We also will spend time together as a family getting to see another part of Brazil.

We arrive back in Natal Nov. 4th in time to welcome some special visitors from some of Martia’s family: her mom, sister Roxi and three of her children Kaylee, Juliana, and Jonny. Pray for their safe arrival Nov.5.

Colossians 1:10 “That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.”

Thank you for prayerticipating in the service of the LORD, 
Tim and Martia and Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

September 9, 2013

Saturday, Natalie turned 16. We thank the Lord for the blessing she is in our lives, the evidences of her spiritual growth, and her desire to serve. It was also Brazilian Independence Day. We had a nice quiet day at home, and then in the evening went to the 60th birthday service for one of our church family.

Monday the three Seniors, Carlos Jr., Aaron, and Gisele, presented their senior projects (monagrafias). They learn a lot by having to dig deep into the subject, yet it’s always a big relief for them to be done with this big project. Their subjects were:

  • The work of the Holy Spirit in the expansion of missions
  • The glory of God in missions
  • Sanctification

Aaron actually finished seminary last year, but didn’t manage to finish his senior project. Once a student leaves seminary without finishing their senior project, it is rare, and difficult to finalize their senior project. We are very pleased that Aaron stuck with it and will be able to actually graduate this year. He and his wife Isabel are serving at church in the small town about 90 minutes away. Pray for them as they serve. There is so much to learn as a new pastor.

Carlos Jr. and his wife Lais (daughter of seminary director) have been serving with the church close to campus. They have been a big help with the young people and the AWANA program which is reaching the children in this needy neighborhood. Carlos Jr. has also been a big help in administrative business for the seminary.

A couple months ago, I asked Gisele to write down a brief testimony to be able to share with you. Well, she ended up writing several pages. I was blessed and encouraged in reading and translating her testimony just to hear one more story how God so uniquely and graciously calls individuals to be His own. Pray for her as she is uncertain right now what the next step should be after graduation. She is very open for missionary work and has been in contact with several missionaries. There is possible opportunity of further training in the area of missions as well. She really doesn’t have any place that feels like home so there’s nothing tying her down. Below are excerpts from her testimony. Attached is her complete testimony. Like I say, it is long and I know not everyone has time to read it, but for those who can, It will give glimpses into her life, into God’s goodness, and into the reality of life in Brazil.

“I wasn't born into a Christian home, yet many years ago, while I was still a child, my soul had a thirst for God…. My dad after drinking alcohol turned into a very violent man…. One Sunday about 11:30 I could see a group of happy children coming, each with a lollipop in their hands. This scene repeated two more Sundays and I wanted to find out the source of the lollipops….At times I observed families around us. They were always happy talking, playing, but I felt sad to not have this in our home. Deep down I was very needy- very needy!”

Thank you for prayerticipating in the service of the LORD, 
Tim and Martia and Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

August 30, 2013

Greetings in our Savior.

There is a saying here in our parts that somewhat translates as follows: “If you don’t have time for God, you are wasting time.” We are in a busier season of ministry but realize we need to take time to write and ask you to pray for us.

In two weeks I (Tim) am scheduled to travel to a sister seminary to teach a module on Leviticus (at Seminario Batista Regular do Sul in Curitiba). The problem or better, challenge, is that with multiple responsibilities the past few weeks haven’t been very productive towards finalizing preparation for this specific ministry opportunity. We have several “irons in the fire” each of which are important—pastoral ministry at church, regular class responsibility here at seminary and the Books & Bibles project. It is tempting to close the office door to focus on the mechanics but that would quench a significant dimension of our ministry, the relational. Whether it’s a national pastor that needs to talk or a seminarian “interrupting”, all of these take unspecified time but also which value cannot be quantified. Additionally, to cut short the less formal contact would quench openness for future weightier matters. Please pray with us for productive ministry preparation and effective service for the LORD. Additionally, I thank the LORD for Martia’s unseen but significant ministry together and keeping us going.

On a follow-up note about the “Books & Bibles” project mentioned above, my parents Robert and Linda Franklin have spear-headed Wiersbe’s six-volume commentary on the whole Bible. It has been exciting to participate in the mechanics of this project designed to facilitate tools for those in ministry. We have 50 sets in the corner of the office with another 40 shipped to two other regions of the country—90 sets total. Almost all of them already have a recipient. This is the most significant boost to the Books & Bibles ministry since the FG project a few years ago, although I should note that the project has continually functioned according to the resources that come in. We thank the LORD for all those who participate in this ministry.

Classes here are cruising along. Besides teaching N.T. Survey 2, I’m especially enjoying “Beginnings” and “Beginnings of the Church” (analysis of Genesis 1-11 and Acts, respectively). Pray that the academic exercise would stimulate spiritual growth that would result in much eternal fruit.

Thank you for prayerticipating in the service of the LORD, 
Tim and Martia and Natalie, Rebecca, Rachel and Hannah

August 12, 2013

Thank you for your part in serving the LORD together. Unless the LORD is at work, human efforts are insignificant. Prayer is a significant ministry.

At the Bible school we are on mid-year break (the school year here is March-Nov). First semester Tim had the privilege to teach New Testament Survey 1 and Analysis of Galatians. Each class had about a dozen students. The survey class calls for introductory stuff—background to N.T. studies—then we got to the good stuff, overview of Matthew through Acts. This year we enjoyed focusing on Mark, a synthesis of our study over last furlough. I find it amazing—history, theology and literature woven into a single masterpiece. We also teach one weekend each month at an extension class four hours away. The scenery makes for a pleasant drive, now that the highway is divided. Thank the LORD for safe travels.

We continue to serve alongside Satellite City Baptist Church. Our current challenges are administrative as we try to update/organize documentation of the mother church and work towards formally organizing the daughter church under the leadership of Pr. Henrique. Please pray for wisdom and God’s blessing. We continue to share ministry responsibilities with Pr. Rubens and cover for each other’s absence at least one weekend a month ministering in other churches. Thank the LORD for the positive ministry relationship. Currently we are preaching expositionally through the gospel of John taking up where the other left off.

Rachel just finished 6th grade and immediately wanted start 7th had it not been for a teacher (mom) imposed two-week break. Rebecca and Natalie have the end in sight. It is delightful to rejoice with Hannah’s “count-down” and finish of kindergarten. It’s fun to watch her sound out words and try her hand at writing. Her favorite flavor-food-dessert-topping is “tocolate.” It goes good with bananas, toast, oatmeal, waffles besides milk, ice cream and “pupcakes” (cupcakes); of course, by itself it’s fine as well. We thank the LORD for allowing and providing for homeschool. The girls were able to take an extending break when their Franklin grandparents were here to teach “Analysis of Daniel-Revelation” at the seminary. We thank the LORD also for these times together.

Please do pray for God’s effective work through us. The times are good; the times are bad. Good quality and quantity of students (about 35); churches doing well; open doors of ministry. However it seems that many of our national co-workers are getting caught up in temporal activities and churches losing focus.

Also pray for the upcoming semester. Tim is scheduled to teach Acts, Genesis 1-11, and N.T. Survey 2 (the last two also at the extension); also, a new class for Tim, Leviticus as a module at the Baptist Mid-Missions sponsored seminary in Curitiba.

July 12, 2013

Thank you for praying for us. A special part of our ministry is participating in missions conferences on the mission field. We recently came across an interesting quote: “Missions is done with the feet that go; the knees that pray and the hands that give.” Thank you for your part in God’s work.

Thanksgiving

  • Since our last update Tim has been to the town of Campina Grande to teach the seminary extension class three times. Thank the Lord for the group of dedicated students there and safe travels each time.
  • Thank the Lord for opportunities to meet believers in other churches and minister to them. Tim spoke for the church anniversary conference in Joao Pessoa (Pr. Adao) at which the whole family came along.
  • The ladies retreat was well attended with over 200 ladies. Madaline, one of the area pastor’s wife, did an excellent job as speaker on the theme “beauty of a lady in the eyes of God” from I Peter 3:3-4.
  • We have been pleased with Natalie taking interest in playing piano at church.
  • Emanuel (a 2010 graduate) and his wife Emilia and children Lidia (8), and Jonatas(1) are staying this week at the seminary for a restful vacation. Pray for a restful and meaningful time as a family. Hannah is delighted to spend time with her “old friend from seminary days” harking back to when Lidia lived on campus.
  • We thank the Lord for much needed rain although it the drought persists throughout the interior.

Requests

  • The seminary semester is on break until August. Pray for the students for rest and refreshment between semesters and ability to minister in the various opportunities.
  • Pray for Carlos Jr., Gisele, and Aaron who are working on their senior writing project.
  • Three of the students Lydia, Lygia, and Sara are helping lead the AWANA camp in Fortaleza this week.
  • One of our students Emerson is filling in for his pastor, Emanuel (see above).
  • Pray for students and teachers in preparations for the next seminary semester. Tim is scheduled to teach “Analysis of Acts,” “Analysis of Genesis 1-11” and “New Testament Survey 2.” These last two are also scheduled at the extension (see above).
  • Pray for Tim as he prepares for teaching a module on Leviticus in south Brasil (Curritiba) mid September.
January 29, 2013

Last weekend (Jan. 20) we went to Mossoro for the going away service for ABWE colleagues Ron & Kathleen Weber who have served 39 years in Brazil. See attached picture.

We left early in order to arrive for Sunday School in a small interior town where one of our seminary graduate serves. Pr. Anderson, Meire, and Meiryanne have been serving in Ipanguacu for two years. see attached picture. Pray for them as they minister in this little town. The area’s main industries are making ceramic bricks or roof tiles and agriculture. Del Monte has several banana and mango plantations.

In the afternoon we enjoyed visiting with fellow missionaries Ken & Lori Stucky who have girls about our girls’ ages.

Natalie went to young people’s camp on Friday night, and enjoyed the time there.

Saturday night Serrinha Congregation (where we had been planning to serve before Satelite came up) celebrated their 2 year anniversary. A young man made a decision after the service. We praise the Lord for the work that God continues to do in that community. They have services on Wednesday and Saturday and plan to start Sunday School soon.

Joao from our old church Planicie has been here at our house doing some work. His daughter Raissa who has been good friends with the girls has been able to come and play several days. We had hoped to get back to homeschool, but it’s been good for them to make contact with her since returning from furlough. While she was here, we made pulled saltwater taffy for the first time.

This Sunday we were able to be at our church Satelite serving alongside Rubens and Mellyne. In December they became parents of Ana Sofia. Pray for them as they make these adjustments of parenthood. Ana Sofia has been quite a crier, but seems to be settling down. See attached picture.

December 2012

The school year at seminary ended November 30th. We had three graduates. Sergio (on left) came to seminary with his wife and three children. He felt God’s leading into ministry several years ago, but first had to finish his high school. He has struggled through the academics of seminary, but has succeeded in completing requirements for his Bachelor’s degree. During his final year of seminary he served as pastor. He desires to pastor full time now and is waiting on the Lord for direction.

Caetano came from a well-to-do home. His mom, still “blind,” would have preferred that he study in a more lucrative area of work such as law or medicine. He has the brain for that, but he felt the Lord leading him into ministry. He is returning to his home church to continue serving there until the Lord leads elsewhere.

Kellyanne started seminary as a single young lady at our extension classes in Campina Grande (Since August, Tim has been going there once a month for 16 hours of classes over a weekend). She then continued her studies on campus. It was here that she met Charles Bronson who was already pastoring a church in Mosorro 4 hours away and felt the Lord leading him to study at the seminary. They celebrate their 1 st anniversary this month. For now, they feel the Lord leading them to put his seminary on hold and give undivided attention to the church. Kellyanne was very happy to receive her Bible certificate as a representation of her hard work through seminary.

It is a blessing to see how God has brought them through these years of studies and challenges—to see how they have grown and stretched to minister in ways that they couldn’t do before. Pray for these young people as they leave seminary and continue on in ministry, that God would enable them to serve with excellence for the glory of God.

We are grateful for the good transition back to Brazil after a year furlough. We arrived in July in time to clean house and start the semester. Hannah is slowly relearning her Portuguese. She’s a people person and always wants us to have someone over for lunch. She’s the only young child in Sunday School, but she gets to play with friends at other opportunities. Rachel shows good initiative in her school, and takes special interest in science. We are pleased with Rebecca’s self-motivation in piano even though we haven’t been able to start up lessons again. Natalie has been helping sing choruses in the service and took part in her first Christmas Cantata. Our family has also had the fun of watching the growing-up process of six little puppies (for 2 months). They continue to enjoy Duke and Lilly. A few weeks ago a tame parrot came to our yard, so we have been enjoying seeing God’s hand of creativity in this colorful bird.

May the Lord bless you and keep you close to Him. We pray that your holiday celebrations will be meaningful with friends and family remembering the first coming of Jesus Christ and looking forward to His return when our celebrations will be complete and perfect. Thank you for your part in our lives and ministry here in Brazil.

October 8, 2012

Ladies Retreat

This past weekend was the ladies retreat for the area churches. There are two retreats each year each being one night. There were over 100 ladies at the retreat. It was a blessing to see several seminary ladies take part in the planning and leadership. It was neat to see the spiritual maturity and progress they have made in their ability to serve. Seminary training can’t and doesn’t cover everything. Many things they learn as they apply what they have studied through the hands on training in their churches. It’s just encouraging to see them continue on, knowing we’ve been able to have a little part in their training. Natalie and Rebecca got a group of ladies together to play baseball. Baseball is a foreign sport here, but recently we’ve had some fun opportunities to play.

Seminary

Tim has been grading term papers all day. It’s been nice to have him home today as he usually spends the day over at the seminary. We’re about half way through the semester. The weeks seem to pass quickly. We just have two graduating this year at the end of November. There are about 5 prospective students for the coming year.

Puppies

Our dog Kitty has six puppies. They are about 5week old. Sometimes I get mixed up and ask the girls if they’ve fed the kitties. It’s been fun to see them grow. Frequently I hear exclamations, “they’re so adorable!”; “Butterball opened his eyes!”; “Brownie has teeth!”; “Poor Pupsqueak!”. Hannah has been pushing them around in the stroller. Even in our fallen cursed world, God gives us many lovely things to enjoy.

Satelite Baptist Church

Practice for Christmas cantata has begun. Two young ladies Isabel and Jessica are interested in coming to seminary. There have been visitors almost every week. Tim preached for the 1st anniversary of the work in Planalto neighborhood. That evening Elicarla made a decision. There have been others also in the past weeks including Edna, Marineide, and Leonardo. Pray for these new believers for spiritual growth and encouragement in their new life with Christ. Pray for Pastor Henrique and the Satelite members who are helping with the building up of this new outreach. Pray for wisdom in leading the church.

Elections

Sunday, election day for city officials throughout Brazil, ended about 90 days of nonsense. One of the main campaign techniques is to gather as many motorized objects as possible decked with horns and flags then drive (slowly) through town. In the lead, and scattered throughout, are “electric trios”—the largest banks of loudspeakers they can manage (whether on cars, pickups, trailers or trucks) blaring untold decibels. Firecrackers add spark. Imagine what it does for traffic. A little ironic as each person stumps to lead a country whose motto is “Order and Progress”. Run off for the top two candidates (where no one got over 50%) are in a few weeks. With the world’s most advance voting system results are out within hours making for more intense commemorations. This too shall pass away.

August 9, 2012

Back in Brazil

We had expected about 30 hours transit time between leaving Burney, CA and arriving at the Seminary in Natal, Brazil, but it took us 44 hours. We arrived safe, but tired. We were glad to make it back in time to attend the wedding of two of our seminarians Carlos Jr. and Lais. We stayed 2 weeks at the Seminary visitors apartment while we got things cleaned up and painted at our house around the corner which had been vacant for a year. We are now feeling quite at home. After recharging the battery on our truck and putting air in a tire, the truck is running pretty well. Thank you for praying for this time of transition. It has gone well. We thank the Lord for His loving care and protection over us.

Seminary Semester Started

July 31 the new semester started . Tim has a total of 24 1st and 2nd year students. Of that number, fourteen attend the campus classes here in Natal. Ten of those students attend the extension class in Campina Grande which is 4 hours away. One professor go’s one weekend a month and teaches 15 hours. Tim taught this past weekend and will be the extension class professor for the next three months. He is teaching classes he has taught before: Old Testament survey, I Corinthians, and Theology of the New Testament. We are thankful for the increase in number of those in the extension class.

This afternoon we were invited to lunch with one of the newlyweds here at seminary. Our girls are over there now spending the afternoon. We thank the Lord for the friendship and enjoyable relationship we have with the seminary family. Tim went to town to do some errands and I thought I’d take the chance to check e-mail which I haven’t done since our arrival. Tonight we will go across town for prayer meeting. The Satelite church seems to be doing well. There are few children now, though. There seems to be good participation of many members in the congregation outreach in the nearby neighborhood Planalto.

July 11, 2012

By the time most of you read this we will be on our way back to our third term of service in Brazil. For some this might be the last time you hear from us—unless your server doesn’t block every email from Brazil or you make necessary settings. It will most likely be quite tiring although 30 hours door-to-door is nothing like it used to be—at least 30 days sea sick. We would appreciate your prayers for us. It still is a process. We thank the LORD for those who help together in various ways.

We have had a good furlough for which we praise the LORD and thank you, his people. We just sent out a postal prayer letter mostly emphasizing the fun activities God has allowed our family to enjoy in the midst of our furlough travels. You should be able to access at the following link and code:

http://timandmartia.com/pictures/invite/
Code: serveGod

I hope this works out. It is a first for us while we are try to make pictures available to those interested in praying for us without broadcasting details to whole world. Please be conscientious about redistributing them. Your feedback and wisdom are welcome.

One last item of special prayer:

Please pray that God would enable us to sell the travel vehicle. We thank the LORD for providing two different vehicles which were a blessing and filled a significant need, however the current one we need to sell. It’s a big item. We need God’s leading. We need His wisdom. We have no experience in these things.

June 20, 2012

Update on Liberty

Thank you so much for praying for Martia’s sister Liberty who lost her husband Josh Stubblefield in a small plane crash May 29. Martia was able to go with her parents and spend several days in Henderson, NV helping give support to Liberty. It was a blessing to get to know some of the Stubblefield family who are strong Christians and one of Josh’s christian friends and fellow pilot. We did not have much opportunity to know Josh, but are thankful that our travels took us through Henderson a couple times and we were able to spend some time with Josh and Liberty this year. God had been working in his life this year and he had been looking for a church. We know that God has a perfect plan even in this tragedy. It’s been a reminder to us of the brevity of life. Today is Liberty’s 26th birthday. We pray that God will continue to show His love and protection to her and draw her close to Him. Saturday June 23rd is the Memorial service in Sacramento where Josh grew up. Please continue to pray for hearts to receive the gospel message and words of hope and encouragement.

Camping with Family

One thing we don’t do in Brazil, but we enjoy doing here in the states is camping. Last week we were able to camp at Lassen National Park for 5 days with Martia’s family. There was a total of 37 relatives. We all had a great time hiking, eating camp food that always tastes so good, playing Scategories and Scrabble, and being free from cell phone and internet coverage. We had never seen so much snow this time of year. On some of the hikes we were able to eat snow along the way.

Packing

It’s time to pack to head back to Brazil. Tim has done quite a bit of packing already. We fly from Sacramento, CA on July 11 this year.

June 1, 2012

Special Prayer Request

Martia’s sister Liberty lost her husband Joshua Stubblefield in Zion National Park plane crash Tuesday May 29th. He worked as a helicopter pilot for a company that gives tours over the Grand Canyon. He died along with 3 friends who were on a day trip to Bryce Canyon. Please pray for her comfort and direction in these days and months ahead. We pray that this tragedy would draw her close to the Lord and that she would sense God’s loving care for her. Pray also for Josh’s family and for the Memorial service that it would be used to give comfort and glorify the Lord.

Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort. - II Corinthians 1:3

Just a Few Weeks Left in the States

We are coming to the end of our time here in the states. We just have a couple more furlough meetings and some family activities. We’re working on getting tickets and packing as well.

  • 6/6 Calvary Baptist Church, Larkspur, CA Pastor Greg Landers
  • 6/9 Tim’s Grandpa Young’s 90th Birthday, Dinuba, CA
  • 6/10 Dunlap Baptist Church, Dunlap, CA Pastor Hudson
  • 6/12-16 Camping with Family and Relatives at Lassen National Park

Special Time with Grandparents

For some of you who have real good memories, you may remember in our last update that we took a last trip to Tim’s parents’ home in Utah the fourth week of April. While we were there, our girls requested to stay with Grandpa and Grandma Franklin for a while. We decided to let our older two girls Natalie and Rebecca stay. We are grateful for grandparents that give good input into their grandchildrens’ lives. This will end up being six weeks apart from our girls, but these chances don’t come very often. Thank you for those we have visited with during this time for understanding their absence. We are looking forward to getting our daughters back June 9th in Fresno at Tim’s Grandpa’s 90th birthday celebration. It will be great to be back together as a family.

We want to praise the Lord for Rachel finishing her school for the year!

April 26, 2012

Last Visit to Utah

At present we are enjoying a few days in Roosevelt, UT, with Tim’s parents. This is our last opportunity to visit their home before returning to Brazil. We decided to make the trip between our weekend meetings in Meridian, ID, and Soap Lake, WA. Thank you for praying for us in these travels.

Pretty Flowers Because God is Good

We enjoyed some spring weather in Meridian, ID, this weekend. It has been nice to see spring come alive the past couple months with the new spring green grass, the buds and blossoms on the trees, and all the beautiful tulips and daffodils. Back in the fall, Tim & I had bought some bulbs as an anniversary gift. Rebecca and I planted those bulbs at our Burney, CA home this past fall. I was feeling kind of sad for myself to have to miss the blooms of these bulbs we planted with our own hands because of our travels in the Northwest. God has been so generous in letting us enjoy many more blooms and blossoms in our times of travel. He also did allow us to see our own little flower garden for a short time as we had to return to California for our truck that had been left at the mechanic for almost a month. It’s not that we have a right to see our pretty flowers or deserve the good things God gives, but it’s just because God is so kind and gracious. We thank the Lord also for His provision for the work on the truck.

Last Two Months of Furlough

Furlough is soon coming to the end. We have several more meetings. The girls are working hard at finishing the school year. We will spend three more weeks with our sending church, Discovery Baptist, in Gig Harbor. We thank the Lord for the kind hospitality of His people including a “landing” place during our Northwest meetings.

Upcoming Schedule

  • 4/22 First Baptist Church, Meridian, ID
  • 4/29 First Baptist Church, Soap Lake, WA
  • 4/29 Grace Baptist Church, Wilson Creek, WA
  • 5/2 Discovery Baptist Church AWANA, Gig Harbor, WA
  • 5/20 Commissioning service Discovery Baptist Church, Gig Harbor, WA
  • 5/27 Calvary Baptist Church, Reno, NV
  • 6/3 Dunlap Baptist Church, Dunlap, CA
  • 6/6 Calvary Baptist Church, Larkspur, CA
  • 6/9 Tim’s Grandpa Young’s 90th Birthday, Dinuba, CA
  • 6/10, 17, 24, 7/1 Bible Conference Intermountain Baptist Church, Burney, CA
February 8, 2012

"My Life as a Missionary" — Martia

Overview of our second missionary term in Natal, Brazil: July 2007-June 2011

4 1/2 yrs. ago, July 2007, we said "goodbye" at Sacramento Airport to a few friends and family and boarded the plane for Natal, Brazil to begin our second missionary term. We had a happy reunion with our missionary colleagues and national partners and got to introduce to them our new family member, Hannah, who was 6 months old. After unsuccessfully searching for housing to rent close by the campus we decided to stay on campus, first 6 months in a one bedroom apartment and then for a year in a bigger house on campus. During this year Tim had a full load at seminary, oversaw the major remodeling of a house we found to buy, and continued helping at Mango Plains Baptist Church. We had some special times together with a couple new missionary families, one which had transferred from the Amazon and one from another mission. The girls made some good friendships with other mk's (missionary kids). We also enjoyed on-campus life living closer to the students. Our children enjoyed time to play with the other children on campus along with keeping up with homeschool studies in which we began to use BJU DVD program. Each Thursday we heard the Brazil National Anthem at the school next door and almost every evening rush hour, the honking of horns.

December 2008, the seminary campus of almost 60 years moved to the other side of town. We also moved to our new home close to the new campus. We are very grateful for God's provision of this debt-free home. No glass windows (wooden louver type), tile roof (not a slab ceiling), tile floors, good ventilation; sandy roads all around, in a less developed area surrounded by a lot of garbage; our property surrounded by an 8ft.-high wall. The yard has large cashew, mango, coconut, and a tart orange tree (with which we have enjoyed many gallons of "lemonade"). It is a home to our dog Kitty, as well as occasional iguanas, scorpions, lizards, geckos, tarantulas, snakes, and other critters. Monkeys and opossums like to visit also. It has been nice to have the space for the girls to play and for Tim to tinker ("therapy") with various plants including orchids, roses, passion fruit, etc. It's great to live close so that Tim can walk to work each day, we can visit frequently, as well as the students coming to visit us for an evening together or to borrow a Bible story visual, asking a ministry idea, or the seminary children coming to play. We love to have that personal family interaction with the students as the learning doesn't just come in the formal classroom setting, but also alongside life to life interaction. Our favorite retreat at the church-association camp is the seminary retreat which is once a year. We love it, because we consider them close like family.

Most of my time as a missionary wife is spent at home, cleaning, cooking, homeschooling, grocery shopping. It is a joy to be able to send my husband to work each morning knowing my husband loves the work he does and that this work is of eternal value, and that I am helping him in this way by holding down the home fort. There are so many opportunities to be involved in and I often have to pray and evaluate my priorities when deciding to say "yes" to something or not. As the seasons of life pass, some priorities move around. Right now I guard to make sure I prioritize the ministry of family, yet I have been able to be involved in other areas as well. One of the things I have loved to do at church has been teaching children. I was able to teach the 3-7 yr. age for our Saturday kids' Bible club and sometimes teach Sunday School. I also have enjoyed helping various people in children's ministries to make song visuals. I have visualized about 10 songs on the computer. I print them off; get a group together to color the picture, cut, glue, and cover with contact paper.

Before furlough I was also able to help with the single girls' weekly devotion at the seminary. This was so good to get to pray together with them, and get to know them more. The past 2 years I also enjoyed being part of the seminary singing group. It is a privilege to serve in Brazil primarily working with people who love the Lord, who have been called to serve. It truly is a joy to be able to be a part of helping them grow in their walk with the Lord and equip them to serve more effectively.

Some of the challenges of this term were going through 2 miscarriages, getting Hannah to sleep through the night, learning to deal with Hannah's eczema, Rebecca having a bout of pneumonia, learning to get over my fear of driving on narrow streets and parking in underground parking areas, learning to drive in fluffy sand without getting stuck, learning to deal with mango and cashew allergies which affect me like poison oak, having a key Brazilian family (and friends) on staff leave the seminary 2 weeks before the semester started, and the various struggles of being a parent-dealing with attitudes and bickering. Desiring to be headed in the right direction as a family and wanting to see growth in love and good character.

As I think of the past 4 years, one of my frequent heart-felt prayers was "O Lord, have mercy, give me wisdom. Help me". It's not that there were even big challenges, but just the normal little challenges that wear on a person. Some of the most frequent verses that God used to encourage me and lead me in the right direction were "Be still and know that I am God." It's so easy to leave aside that quiet time with the Lord because of so many distractions, not bad things, but just things that need to be done and find yourself half through the day without having stopped to spend quiet thoughtful moments with the Lord in prayer and in His Word. So many times God has used this verse to tell me to stop what I'm doing and sit still with Him. "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, let your request be made known to God." How often the Lord reminds me to turn my worries or concerns into prayers. Whether it was the concern of a wayward sibling, my Dad's heart problems, uncertainty of how to share the love of Christ with my neighbor, our dentist, orthodontist and doctor; having to take ten trips to renew my Brazilian driver's license; preparations for speaking at a ladies retreat, grief of a disrespectful attitude and not being sure how to deal with it, misunderstandings, and sometimes just the concern over my own weakness and prone to sinfulness. Pray, don't worry. "Count it all joy when you fall into various temptations." God has a purpose and a plan. Let Him have His way. He knows what is best.

It has been great to be in the States for furlough. It's nice to just be an American and not to stand out or feel conspicuous about speaking English. We've enjoyed some foods that we don't have so much access to such as cherries, sweetcorn, grapefruit, tortillas chips, rootbeer, celery, blackberries, blueberries, large cold cereal selection and dairy products that don't have a "funny" taste. It's been nice to not have to use a mosquito net at night. We have been in a different church almost every Sunday. Sometimes traveling gets tiring and it makes it hard to keep up on homeschooling, but we haven't had any breakdowns or accidents. We have had good times with family for holidays, birthdays, camping, fishing, Fourth-of-July fireworks, cutting a fresh Christmas tree, going caroling, playing with cousins. It has been a delight to a mother's heart for the girls to make some nice friends. Unfortunately, some we don't get to see very long, but still it's been special to see God give those fun moments. God's also provided for the many meals on the road and the fuel for our vehicle. We also get the chance to be with so many wonderful people who love the Lord and have a heart for missions. It has been great to have personal face-to-face contact with those who give and pray for God's work in Brazil and even to get to meet many new people we'd never met before and that now are part of our ministry in these ways.

Servants of Jesus,

Martia and family

Points of Praise

  • Safe travels.
  • Full schedule reporting to churches.
  • Increase in sponsorship.

Points for Prayer

  • To be a blessing to God's people.
  • Continued safety in travels.
  • For God to raise up servants to prepare at the seminary.