Our organization is buzzing with excitement as we step into a new territory. As a relatively young church planting organization, growth into new countries is a huge source of encouragement. In late 2017, we are projected, for the first time, to move into the country of Brazil to plant a church in the city of Cuiaba. Our first 40/40 Church Planter Missionaries to leave in October 2017 to begin their ministerial and language training in the city of Brasilia, where we have formed a partnership with a local Nazarene Church.
Brooke Thomas, a current 40/40 Church Planter in Cordoba, Argentina, has decided after her contract in Argentina to move to Brazil and help train these new 40/40s. “I am setting up the office, which is the first step” she explains. She will be arriving on the field in Brazil in July 2017 as Extreme’s first Missionary in the country. “I’ll be learning Portuguese and setting up the office. [And then I’ll be finding] a space for the 40/40s to live.” Brooke’s official title is the Brasil Field Education Coordinator, but because Brooke is to be the first person on the ground, she will be doing a lot more than what her title initially implies.
As our first Extreme Missionary to step foot in Brazil to lead the 40/40 work, Brooke has a lot to become familiar with. The church plant project will work in partnership with the Brazilian Church of the Nazarene. As Brooke moves into Brasilia, Brazil, she will assign herself to the task of learning how the local Nazarene Church uses the Master’s Plan (a church model that Extreme uses for church plants in South America). The reality is that each country’s culture poses the need to shift and modify how we plant churches to be relevant and effective. The exciting thing about the church in Brasilia is that they have done the brunt work of using the Master’s Plan in their culture and have refined how it can function effectively in Brazilian culture. When Brooke arrives in Brasilia, she will learn how the church there operates in their the houses of prayer, encounter, discipleship classes.
By the time the 40/40s make it to the field in October, Brooke will have familiarized herself with the general practices of the church and will work with the 40/40 Team to help them learn the model. While the missionaries are learning about the church model the North Americans will also be heavily entrenched in language studies. Extreme has found in Brasilia that there are no traditional Portuguese language schools, instead there are lots of Portuguese tutors. Brasilia is an interesting city in Brazil in that it acts as the nation’s capital, but only by function and not by name. Back in the 1960s, the city was created and used by the government. Now it continues to operate similarly to the US’s Washington D.C. “Because Brasilia is like Washington D.C. they don’t have a lot of Portuguese schools,” says Brooke. “But, they have a lot of Portuguese tutors for ambassadors and politicians’ kids and stuff like that. So that’s what we decided on was an organization that will teach Portuguese at the church. They’ll send teachers to the church and teach our missionaries in group settings. They are working to make a curriculum with more theological words for our missionaries for their work.”
We are actively seeking and interviewing people to fill 40/40 Church Planter positions and a Cluster Support Family. There are currently three North American young women that have been approved onto the team as 40/40s. Two young men are needed to complete the North American side of the 40/40 Team. If you know of anyone who might be interested in serving for two years on the mission field of Brazil as a 40/40 Church Planter, let us know! The Brazilian portion of the team is still being put together. Recently, the country had a large conference in which Extreme was promoted as a missions opportunity with which young adults could work. The response has been incredible, and many Brazilian young adults are interested in serving as 40/40s in their own country.
Again, the excitement across the organization is rising for this new opportunity to serve in Brazil. Partner with us in prayer as this church plant prepares for deployment. Pray for Brooke as she takes on the large job of initiating and preparing the new mission field to receive the 40/40 Church Planting Team. Also pray for Brooke and the curriculum that she creates for the 40/40 Team when they land. And pray that our Mobilization teams find both North American and Brazilian young adults to respond to the call the Lord is making on them to join with Extreme as 40/40s.