YPI 2018 was a BLAST! God moved powerfully during the entire trip. He was so faithful to work through the team members and staff which has grown our faith even more. God did so much in Phase 1 and Phase 2, but, if we let it, the impact that YPI has had on our lives will go far beyond our 2 week mission trip in Brazil.
We arrived mid afternoon and got settled into the visitor’s center with name tags and the exciting information of “no water!” It was already looking to be an exciting and stretching week. Everyone was so welcoming and we got a tour of the beautiful base before enjoying our first meal of rice with fish and matapa. Some of us visited Iris Arts in the morning where we saw the Mamas having a Bible lesson and then we got to buy some wonderful gifts that they had made. All of us headed to the preschool in the morning and to play with the kids, sing and share a skit with them. After getting back we headed toward the bush-bush! Some of us crammed into the camion with the luggage while others rode the 3 hours in the bus to Namanhumbir. That evening after getting our tents set up we shared the Jesus film, danced and got to pray for many people. The first morning in the bush we split up in groups and went from house to house praying for villagers and loving on kids. We got to see lots of people encouraged and several healings. That afternoon most of the group went to play soccer. Later in the evening we again showed the Jesus film, sang and danced and then preached the gospel. It was a great but exhausting day of pouring out love. In the morning before we left the village we honored the chief and king with handshakes and gifts. We arrived home in the afternoon and some of us relaxed at the beach for the rest of the day, while others enjoyed the visitor’s center. Children’s Day was by far the most exhausting day, but massive fun! Everyone on the base worked together to escort the children from the church to the kitchen and then off the base with a bag of candy in hand. We fed roughly 6,800 children. For some it was one of only 2 chicken dinners that they’ll have this year. We were impressed at how the kids walked so far and waited in line so long for it! Most of the team enjoyed a wonderful relaxing time on a cruise to a little island that often housed Iris guests. We snorkeled, ate delicious food and enjoyed the beautiful, calm beach. It was a day spent being so grateful for God’s abundant blessings, like western food, showers, and flushing toilets. Our first experience of church on the base was amazing! We got to dance and sing in different languages and watch a drama performance by some youth.
As I was preparing to write this report, I was reminded of a song we sang years ago in the church.
We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord
We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord
And we pray that all unity may one day be restored
And they’ll we are Christians by our love
And they’ll know we are Christians by our love.
To me this embodied our team to England and Denmark as well as those we met along the way. We were a small team of twelve from the United States, Okinawa, Canada, Scotland and England. We were from all walks of life – retirees, a banker, a U. S. Marine, a teacher of Hebrew at a college, an accountant, a physician’s assistant and a consultant. It didn’t take long for the team to bond together beginning at Heathrow.
We arrived on Saturday, April 21 in London and went by bus to Addlestone, a quiet little town about an hour from London. This town would be our home for four days. Upon arrival we refreshed ourselves and set out by train to London. We were joined by staff from the church, St. Paul’s where we would be ministering, and a sweet woman who joined us from another part of England. There was so much to learn about each other and the train ride was perfect for that. We did a quick self-tour of the Tower of London which is an amazing fortress and castle along the Thames. One could spend hours there, but we made due with what we could see. We went to eat and then were off the Eye of London for a ride. We were there at sunset and saw some amazing sights including Big Ben, Parliament, and Buckingham Palace. Such a peaceful, enjoyable ride.
Nigeria 2018 was an incredible outpouring of God’s Presence, Love, Gifts and Goodness! From the first Sunday services to the last, the love and power of God pervaded the atmosphere. Churches were blessed with powerful messages from Leif Hetland, Bishop Garlington, Tom Jones, Alun Leppitt and Charity Cook. The first day of the Abuja conference began with insightful messages to the leaders, many of whom lead persecuted churches. Tom Jones spoke on revival and declared that the expression of revival is the releasing of the gifts. Charity spoke “about ploughing the ground” in Nigeria in preparation for the coming renewal. Teaching layered on teaching, all adding to the message that there is a shift in the atmosphere for Nigeria. All sensed that the nation is in transition, ready for revival.
The mid-week convocation of Apostles was amazing. Pastors and leaders from all over Nigeria were challenged to lay down those things hindering their ministry. In a prophetic act, they lifted up imaginary “rods” of their ministry to Jesus, then laid them down in surrender. It was a solemn moment of re-dedication and re-commitment to the Lord. Bishop extolled them to be “like plants who, at the scent of water, send forth their roots.” He encouraged them to keep pursuing, to keep after the things of God. “The atmosphere of anticipation is the breeding ground of miracles,” he explained. Tom taught about living refreshed under the pressure of ministry, reminding them: ”Do not let your identity be wrapped around what you do. And quit? Never!”
Our trip started many weeks ago when we were accepted to join the International Ministry Team to take part in all the amazing things that God is doing in this beautiful country.
The whole team (from USA, Canada, UK and Brazil) were filled with excitement long before we left our homes. After long flights we all arrived at Sao Paolo airport. We had the joy of greeting each other and here began the forging of many friendships which I am sure will last a life time!
After an 8 hour bus drive, taking in the green, lush scenery of southern Brazil, we arrived at Bourbon Hotel Londrina. The hotel staff were exceptionally kind, so welcoming and the food was excellent! The first evening was ‘Orientation’ and ‘Impartation’. Pat told us everything we needed to know about the trip. Thank you, Pat, for being such an amazing organiser and for overseeing our safety! Then the Holy Spirit came and ministered His Love and Goodness in huge measure. Through the Fire Tunnel, which we have come to know and love, we received impartation of the Holy Spirit to go out with power and boldness.