Brazil Update- A New Church!
This past weekend, Annie and I had the privilege of being a part of the launch for C3 ABC. This new C3 Church is just outside of São Paulo, the seventh largest city in the world. The church is actually located in São Bernardo do Campo. It is called C3 ABC because there are four cities in that area that are very close together. One starts with "A," one starts with "B," one starts with "C," and one starts with "D."
Pastors Sidnei and Raquel Rodrigues are leading this new church. C3 ABC was a church plant out of C3 Santos, the first C3 Church in Brazil. Pastors Fabio and Dani Aguieiras lead that great church and have worked very closely with Sidnei, Raquel and their team. Pastor Sidnei has a vision to see a C3 Church in the other three cities that are located near São Bernardo do Campo.
The launch service was absolutely amazing. The team did a phenomenal job on social media creating a buzz around the countdown. The core group worked hard inviting friends and family to the opening night of the new church. When the lights dimmed and the music started this past Saturday night, there were 250 people in attendance. The atmosphere was electric with anticipation and the worship was incredible.
Pastor Ronald Berg spoke about his journey and how he found the C3 family right after he started his church in Curitiba. Pastors Fabio and Dani spoke about the historical and the global aspects of C3. There are around 350 C3 Churches worldwide and they really are a family.
I shared three specific things that I felt God wanted Sidnei and Raquel to hear.
1. "Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me." (John 15:4) Our fruitfulness and success in life and in ministry will only come as we abide in and stay close to Jesus. No matter how talented or gifted we are, we will only bear fruit as we stay connected to our Lord.
2. "But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!" (John 15:7) A leader is only as good as his vision. A leader is only as big as his vision. One of the important things about vision, though, is that it needs to be refreshed periodically. We refresh our vision by filling our minds with God's Word. God's Word renews and cleanses our minds and fills us with fresh vision.
3. "You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name." (John 15:16) Church-planting is hard work. It is incredibly rewarding but it is not easy. There are going to be challenges but we must never forget that God has called us. He chose us to fulfill his mission. It was not our good idea. It is a call of God and we are privileged to be a part of His plan.
We laid hands on Sidnei and Raquel and prayed for them as they step into their new roles. Sidnei then preached a powerful message from Joshua about walking in faith and courage. When he gave the invitation, four people responded to the invitation to receive Christ.
Would you pray for Pastors Sidnei and Raquel as they embark on this exciting journey? Please pray that many people would find Christ through C3 Church ABC.
Would you also continue to pray for Annie and I as we work with great young leaders like Sidnei and Raquel? If you would like to be a part of our team, just click here. Obrigado!