Impressions from Hong Kong

My debut as a member of this important body within our Communion is giving me greater awareness on the diversity of our church.

The Church in Hong Kong received us all with a warmest feeling of hospitality. Kindness and promptness in offer to us a very organized event looking for everything that make us touched for their witness as brothers and sisters in Christ.

The first thing I would like to point is the important fact that we can stay together with a large difference of roles and Provincial styles related to the job of a Provincial Secretary. This makes the event even more exciting in way to offer rich approaches.

Beyond that, is clear that this three yearly meeting permits every Provincial Secretary to update its own comprehension on the dynamic and changeable context of our Communion.

The Hong Kong’s Conference is offering a singular opportunity to show how as Provincial Secretaries we can contribute for more inter-dependence between our Provinces in terms of strengthens and weakness that each of it has.

This interdependence has been raised more during this Conference trough a daily sharing of word and sacrament. At the table we are all so little children before our God.

We are different in many ways: theology, culture, making-decisions experiences, etc. but this difference is not a problem. In contrast it helps us to hear one another with love, humble attitude and openness of mind.

May God bless our meeting and inspires all of us to build more and more close relationships that enables our Communion to be relevant in a world that ask us as Christians to be more effectively in our mission!

Missionary District of the West: a frontier to be strongly supported!

My visit to the Missionary District of West was a magnificent experience. It was my first contact with this part of Brazil. And my first visit as Provincial Secretary to this jurisdiction under provincial responsibilities. The state of Rondônia - part that I visited - has all the proper contradictions of our rich country. Natural beauties, with its surrounded rivers and igarapés of a equatorial forest threatened to each day for the voracious deforestation.
A contradictory society built to generate few people rich and exploring the environment. And in the opposite side the majority does not have access to basic public services, such as education and health.
A region where the violence against children and teenagers is raising to an unexpected level. Years and years of pure control by egoistic elites generate an enormous will of transformation from the excluded population.
Voices to defend the dispossessed ones are few. Between these voices we have the Church. Our Church in Rondônia and in Mato Grosso is quite small but it has conquered a great respect. Two Parishes and two Missions with simple people but strong in faith in witch they had found in the reason to fight for a worthy life. Some are laborers not specialized. Others are landless people. Others still survive as mine excavators and others still are small producers of subsistence agriculture.
But I saw in all faces a deep sense of solidarity. And much joy. I had the chance to visit the houses of some parishioners and I feel authentic simplicity.

At the same time I felt in all of them the lack of the necessary minimum for a worthy life.
The pastoral leadership of the area faces, however some enormous difficulties. The first one of it is of the geographical distances. The distance from Ariquemes to Campo Verde, between the two parishes is 1.330 km.
Another enormous challenge is the need of ministers. In spite of the zealous effort of the Bishop, D. Almir Santos and of two priests Revdos. Hugo Sanches and Paulo Tamaki, the District needs more pastoral leadership.
In the area that I visited it has a lay-minister and a woman is preparing to became a new lay-minister next october. Both desire to be ordained to the diaconate. But they face the difficulty of theological formation. The seminaries of our Province Church (Recife and Porto Alegre) is so far to them (thousands kilometers) and in spite the possibility of providing long-distance courses the costs are so high in an area where the salaries of workers are commonly about 200 USD.
Is an authentic miracle to see a Church that in spite of all challenges is a living Church.
The Church grows and gains visibility against the whole society. The work with the landless people and the children education is two fronts is recognized as a clear witness.
The anglican presence in the region represents for many people the certainty of a Church compromised to Justice and the Environment. Two sufficiently absent values in a dominated land years by years for the patronage in the past and actually for unscrupulous wood explorers and agribusiness companies. Explore the forest and contaminate waters are the great threat for this region as the whole Amazon region in Brazil. It is necessary to give hope to a people who are strongly determinate in living the Gospel’s marks.
It is in our hands the responsibility to contribute for strengthen these values in that part of our Anglican Church. There, I saw people truly aware of their baptismal convenant. And, for instance we can not leave they feel alone!

The show must go on!

Dears Friends

In the last 30 days I lived the dubiousness of feelings around life and the death through the illness and the final travel of my beloved father to the other side of the river.
In all these moments I received from many friends the affection and the certainty that the final Word of God is: the show must go on, paraphrasing the famous song interpreted by Fred Mercury.
Yes, the show must go on because this is the expressed wish from those that leaves the scene of history to share the eternity in faith.
Thus, keeping in mind and heart the firmness showed by my father for many years during his earthly life, I feel myself comforted and ready to say as Job: I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth.
My deepest thanks to all my friends and colleagues that shared with me this experience. I know that many of others did not hear about my father’s death but were so kind with me during his illness. Such solidarity deepened my faith and my commitment with the life.
I'm ready to start again to share the dream of a World according the God’s dreams!