CACHOEIRINHA, BRAZIL—On January 20-23, 2018, a group of volunteers began a three-day humanitarian mission in Cachoeirinha. Cachoeirinha (little waterfall) is a city in Brazil's southernmost state, Rio Grande do Sul. The city has a population of 118,278 and neighbors the state capital, Porto Alegre.
Approximately 170 volunteers representing 12 Brazilian states and 4 countries (Peru, Argentina, Colombia, and Romania) participated in the mission. The volunteers spent Sabbath, January 20th, in spiritual preparation for the days ahead. After sunset, they began their training. In preparation, 4,000 invitations were distributed in the community. An invitation reached a barbershop in the city. Intrigued and impressed with the work being done for their community, the barbers decided to contribute their services and joined the mission as volunteers. The event also received coverage from the local news.
Among the services offered by the professionals at the mission were:
- doctor check-ups,
- dentist check-ups,
- nurse station,
- massage station,
- naturopathy education,
- psychology sessions,
- nutritionist consultation,
- legal counsel,
- haircuts and barber grooming,
- finance and marketing consultation,
- craft station for adults and children,
- business and entrepreneurship counsel,
- spa services (natural masks, etc.),
- clothing donation,
- recreation for children,
- and pastoral counsel.
The mission ended on January 23, and the following day was reserved for sightseeing and fellowship. A total of 1,894 individuals passed through one or more of the services offered at the mission with a total of 6,700 services performed. At the end of the event, 250 individuals were enrolled in Bible studies and 1,396 pieces of literature had been distributed.
Every January and July the branch of the SDARM Welfare Department in Brazil "O Bom Samaritano" (The Good Samaritan) organizes a national or international mission. The objective of these missions is either to open a new field (leaving a worker to continue the work begun) or to strengthen an existing church. The Reform Movement is already present in Cachoeirinha and the event leaves behind a strengthened church and an established presence in the region that will follow up with the Bible studies.
We are grateful for each volunteer who gave their time and skills. May the seeds planted bear fruit to God's glory.