Friday, June 27, 2014

USA Bound & Prayer Requests!

We have some exciting news...
The Matias Family is coming to the USA for a more extended visit!



We will arrive this November and stay until the end of March. That's a total of almost 5 months!

After living 7 years in Brazil, I am super thankful for this opportunity to go to the USA for a longer, more quality visit - and the timing is perfect for us!  Sophia and I are especially excited that we will get to celebrate Christmas with family American-style. It will be Sophia and Jessie's first Christmas in the USA, as the last time we were there for Christmas was in 2009 when I was pregnant with Sophia.




 After our USA trip we will make our BIG move to the largest city in Brazil - São Paulo.  Once we are living in São Paulo we will not be able to make extended trips to the USA anymore due to our commitment with establishing a new ministry and because Sophia will be starting elementary school.  In the future all travel will be limited to school vacation time.

We are really looking forward to this special visit already!  We have plans to celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas with family, visit several YWAM bases to share about our São Paulo project, speak in various churches about missions, and visit our dear friends in the Raleigh area.

We also hope to rest and be refreshed spiritually, as we know once we return to Brazil there will be MUCH work awaiting us as we move cities and start a new ministry to children at risk.



Will you please pray for us as we prepare to travel to the USA and transition into the next season God has for us? 

 Here are some specific prayer requests:

Felipe's US Visa - This Monday morning Felipe has an interview at the US Embassy offices here in Belo Horizonte to attempt to renew his US visa.  Please pray for favor as we go to this appointment.

Our finances -  We need finances to help pay for our plane tickets, travel documents, and travel/health insurance for our family during our time in the USA. God has provided in miraculous ways in the past for all our travel needs, and we trust Him to provide for us again. In total we need about $6,000.00 USD.

Our last months in Belo Horizonte -  Time is flying and it is starting to hit us that we have just a few more months of actually living in Belo Horizonte. Pray for us that we can end this season well, while also preparing for our future.

Our Family - As you can see there are MANY changes on the horizon. Pray for our girls and for us as we face these changes, new challenges and much traveling. May God protect us and draw us even closer to Him during our upcoming months in the USA.  May His kingdom come and His will be done in us as a family!

    Thanks SO MUCH for your prayers and faithful support!  We appreciate your partnership!



Thursday, June 26, 2014

YWAM World Cup Events - Week # 2

Felipe's photos from Week #2 of the YWAM World Cup Events!

As I mentioned before, a group of YWAMers together with a documentary team were here in Belo Horizonte showing a documentary about Human Trafficking in Brazil. Check out their website at: www.1REAL.org.

 One lovely evening, the team was able to show their documentary called "1 Real" at one of the most beautiful and popular squares of Belo Horizonte. Read more about this impacting night here on the YWAM Kickoff site.





Several people on the team walked around inviting people to attend a showing of "1 Real" by playing the documentary trailer on I-pads.







One of the many YWAM events surrounding the World Cup games was a special World Cup soccer tournament organized for boys from the slums. It was held at the Lighthouse Community Center.

















Our friend Jonathan made this video from the film footage he captured of this event.  It is an amazing video that truly shows how much this day blessed the lives of these boys!




Last Sunday morning various churches and YWAMers united together to evangelize at Pampulha Lake, a major tourist site here in Belo Horizonte - which just happens to be located near the soccer stadium. 

  






Praying for the nation of Brazil!










A time of prayer among YWAM missionaries and churches before going to evangelize outside the Fan Fest venue.



This is the Fan Fest location where hundreds of fans gather to watch the World Cup games here in Belo Horizonte!
  




As you can see, many people recieved prayer before the Fan Fest, some even commiting their lives to Christ.  Praise the Lord!




Continue praying for these special moments of raising awareness about Human Trafficking and sharing God's amazing love during the World Cup games.  May many come to know Jesus and the true life and freedom He so generously gives!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Recent Family Photos

During this month and next, Felipe is super busy taking photos of YWAM evangelism events surrounding the World Cup games.  He has been spending many days going to various events and locations in the city, then returning home to work on photos, sitting for hours behind the computer.  Let's just say, Felipe has been a little bit occupied lately, but this season of working intensely with photography has been so good for him.  I absolutely love to see Felipe using His gift of photography for the GLORY of God!

While Felipe is busy working, I am caring for our lovely little ladies!



The first part of this year I was working lots, but during June and July I am taking it easy work-wise to really focus on my girls.   I am happy to have some low key weeks full of quality mommy-daugher time.

We have been enjoying simple pleasures like making pancakes, feeding monkeys in our backyard, decorating Easter Eggs (Sophia has an obsession, and yes I know it's way past Easter), playing with friends, watching the girls' favorite movie Frozen and some of the World Cup games, getting an ice cream and going to a nearby park, and eating one of our favorite snacks (like every other day) Brazilian cheese bread (pão de queijo).

  I am really enjoying my girls and the phases both of them are in presently.   Sophia is a thriving, energetic 4 year old and our sweet Jessie will turn 2 in a few months, so those terrific twos are looming just around the corner...

Just so you know, I do indeed deal with my fair share of tantrums, emotional outbursts, never-ending hungry hippos who constantly want snacks, and one super curious toddler who gets into absolutely EVERYTHING!  If I turn away for just one second some how, some way Jessie has found something random to make a mess with.  I am constantly cleaning. She is truly my messy Jessie, and here is the proof! 


Jessie's new favorite spot.  She uses a chair to climb her way into the bathroom sink to brush her "tee," as she calls them.

Everyone always says to enjoy these early years because it passes very quickly.  You blink and they are suddenly grown up! I can already attest to this. It seems like both my babies are growing up super fast already!
 Can I please just push the pause button?

Here are some recent family photos, which show a little of our lives here in Brazil.



Kisses and hugs for baby sister who is busy eating her icecream!


A family selfie that actually turned out.



Sophia is quite the artist and coloring queen!  Recently she wanted to write my name next to a picture she had colored of me as a ballerina. (The ballerina is wearing green because I like green!)

Sophia asked how to spell my name so I then carefully spelled aloud my name for her, telling her which letter to write next.  Here is the final result! She managed to write my name perfectly, with no help from me, remembering how to write each letter all by herself.  Honestly, I was surprised when she did this and impressed with how she is progressing with remembering her letters.  I am very proud!



When Sophia spent the night recently at her Aunt Renata's house, we went out to the park with just Jessie!



Out on a daddy-daughter date at the city park.



Lately monkeys are visiting our house on a regular basis.  We keep giving out free bananas and they keep coming back for more!




This friendly little guy is actually missing his right arm.  Look closely in the next photo and you can see where his arm should be, but is not.  Incredible!



Playing with one of the World Cup evangelism booklets. 



There are several other missionary kids who live here in YWAM and they love to play at our house, especially in this little hideout we made in the bottom section of  the wardrobe cabinets in the girls' bedroom. 



Sophia wore orange and got her face painted to support and cheer together with our Dutch friends during a Holland World Cup match!



























 Sophia loves going over to our friends' home to play with friends (around her age) and jump on the trampoline!


For many of the World Cup games, the girls and I gather together with missionary friends to watch the games on TV.  All the kids play together while the grown-ups enjoy the soccer matches!



Even Jessie wanted her face painted to cheer Brazil on!  After seeing all the other kids get their faces painted, she timidly waited her turn and stood very still to get green and yellow painted on her cute little face!



Watching Brazil win!



Jessie sacked out during the game!


From time to time I really like posting our family photos here to share a bit of our lives. It is also a nice way to document what is going on in our lives personally and to be able to look back and remember the blessings.  We have MUCH to be thankful for! 

Thanks to all of you, our friends and family, for your constant love and support of us serving on the mission field.  We appreciate you more than words can express!  

Stay tuned because soon we will be sharing news about our plans to visit the USA! 
Blessings from Brazil!