BMS Link Missionary
The church regularly supports the BMS (Baptist Missionary Society) financially through its monthly offerings. The BMS has linked the church to Liz and Sergio Vilela who are in Mozambique with their children. This is so that we can support their work and family in prayer. Some in the church will correspond with them so that they are kept in touch with life back in the UK. They have 2 children, a daughter Chloe and a son Joshua.
"...I have come that they might have life, and have it in abundance” (John 10:10)
Taken from the BMS website: http://www.bmsworldmission.org
Liz and Sergio are serving in Beira, Mozambique. They are working alongside the Mozambican Baptist Convention helping to build capacity in youth ministry and community projects.
Liz and Sergio met in Brazil when she volunteered with YWAM during her university holidays. Sergio was already working as a mission worker with them. After marrying in 2007 they continued to work in Brazil for another year and then both felt called by God to do some Christian work in England. As a result they have spent three years as youth pastors at Saffron Walden Baptist Church, which is now their sending church.
Liz and Sergio knew moving to England would not be long term as they had always felt a call to mission overseas. So when their time at the church ended in 2011, they felt it was right to seek opportunities to work with BMS.
After training they went to Mozambique in 2013 where they work with the local Mozambican church. Sergio encourages and supports pastors and church leaders throughout Mozambique. He also works in the Igreja Baptista do Aeroporto (Airport Baptist Church Beira).
Give thanks that after four years in Mozambique, they now feel settled in the new culture and that their ministries are progressing well.
The Mozambique Baptist Convention has many local Pastors and Missionaries who have NEVER had any formal theological training!
After Sergio's first successful training course they want more.
He is now engaged in providing six separate weeks of training over two years and he will have to visit churches all over the country.
Liz uses her skills through PEPE (a pre-school education programme) to train and develop pre-school educators and community workers across Mozambique.
Liz teaching a new dance and song to a group.
Liz is very concerned that the PEPE parents and teachers have little appreciation of the dangers that chldren encounter every day.
She holds well attended classes to show that children are God's gift to be treasured
At the Bible Institute
Liz and Sergio write:
This week marks 4 years that we have been living in Mozambique!! How time flies. We have had 4 years of lots of learning, testing times, good times, the birth of a baby boy, 2 visits to the UK. We are thankful to God for this time and for all of you who have been supporting us in whatever way. We wouldn’t be here without your support. The other day I asked Chloe what she liked about Mozambique and she said the hot weather, and then she can eat more ice cream!
We celebrated Joshua’s birthday with a bouncy castle and a jungle party. There aren’t a lot of options here for birthday parties so what’s most important is that we spend it with friends. Joshua had a great time eating lots and lots of cake!! Thanks for those of you who sent cards or emailed messages to Joshua, it’s lovely to be remembered on these special days.
It has been a little challenging for Liz and her child protection work in some PEPEs recently, with people not wanting to change or improve their practice, but someone pointed out to me that out of the 20+ PEPEs in this area, there are only a handful that find it more difficult to change whereas the others are open to learn and to adapt. So for this insight, Liz was more positive to think it’s not a losing battle! One step at a time.
Sergio also has some obstacles to get over for his project to continue so it’s a time of waiting. However, he is currently teaching theology at the Baptist Bible Institute so it’s a new experience for him that also has its challenges.
Prayer Points for June:
Safe travels as we drive to Maputo on 23rd June to visit the Barrell family, who are part of our BMS team. While we are there, Liz will visit PEPEs and do some child protection training, Sergio will look for a car for a colleague, and we will take a few days holiday over the border in SA. Please pray that it will be a refreshing time catching up with people, that the training will be helpful and impact the PEPE teachers, and that we will get back safely to Beira at the beginning of July.
Liz as she celebrates her birthday on 11th June.
Sergio for his work at the Institute and school, and for God’s will to be done in the project he is involved in.