In just a few short weeks, Karis Church will send a team to spend a week in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. Joseph Lass is the administrative leader for the group this year. He shares about this year's team and their plans for the trip.
Our goal as a church is to serve Restore Brazil in whatever capacity they need each year. This year we will be hosting a children’s ministry in a community where Restore Brazil has started sharing the Gospel and creating relationships in recent months. We will also participate in mercy ministry to those suffering from drug addictions (handing out food and drinks, praying for and singing with them) as well as worshiping alongside several church plants throughout the city.
Joining me on the team this year are Josh Zeichik (pastoral leader), Jessica Fleshman (children's ministry leader), Sam Miers (music leader), Michael Maw (prayer leader), Nate Gutwein (materials coordinator), Carl Cheadle, Lauren Rutherford, Tony Hodgson, and Chandler Greenwood. This is the first trip to Brazil for Josh, Nate, Carl, Lauren, Tony, and Chandler.
This is also the smallest team that Karis Church has sent to Brazil; it will be challenging to have an effective children's ministry with our smaller numbers. The favelas are filled with so many children who have flocked to the children's ministry events in past years.
This year, I, personally, am looking forward to continuing to strengthen relationships with fellow believers in Rio. This is my third trip and I have loved getting to know members of Restore Brazil and their partner churches more each year.
One exciting thing about returning is seeing the overwhelming growth in other returning members. Being able to think on your feet and improvise in any situation is crucial and something we push everyone towards in the months leading up to our trip. Those who are returning have stepped up in various ways this year and continue to grow in maturity – both spiritual and personal.
Every year, we take extra suitcases loaded with school supplies, toiletries, and other items to give away while we are in Brazil or to help the churches in Rio. We have been collecting items to take with us via the Giving Tree in the lobby at Westside. This Sunday, March 8, is the last Sunday the tree will be in the lobby. If you previously took a tag, please bring those donated items with you on Sunday. If you did not, would you stop by the Giving Tree on Sunday or talk to one of the members of the team to see what we still need? If you have any questions, please see Nate Gutwein or Joseph Lass.
Please pray for the team while we are ministering in Brazil. We can't wait to tell you all about the experience when we return home!