Carnaval Outreach in Brazil
Ionata Rodrigues reports,
It was almost midnight as we were evangelizing at Central do Brasil (similar to New York’s Grand Central Station) in Rio de Janeiro. We were almost out of broadsides (Jews for Jesus gospel tracts), and many who were taking them quickly threw them away. I decided to try a different strategy to make the most of the tracts I had left. I paused for a while, not offering them to anyone. People began looking at me as if to say, ‘You are here to hand those tracts out, so why don’t you?’ and many asked me for one. These were the people who perhaps were thirsty for God, and thus the remaining tracts were not so easily thrown away.”
Also from Ionata:
“We were handing out tracts at Sambadrome, when a man who happened to be a homosexual stopped and asked if we were believers, and if we prayed. His mother had just passed away, and he was considering suicide. We prayed for him and he confessed Jesus. He asked us to keep in touch with him, and said he believed that his life would start to change.”
Michel Roque de Almeida reports,
“An older believer who had backslidden stopped to talk and said that he really wants to return to God. A Jewish woman who thought Jewish people could not believe in Jesus was happy to see us, and learn that she’d been wrong about whether Jews can believe in Jesus. Encounters like these brought me great joy.”Raquel Ribeiro Tavares reports, “This was my first time participating in evangelism during Carnaval, and it opened my eyes to the importance of sharing Christ during this festival. I found that evangelizing during this time is easier that I thought. Also, being able to interact with Jewish people was an immense joy and a new experience for me. One Jewish man was completely resistant to the gospel as we began a conversation, but little by little his resistance shrank to the point that he wanted to continue the conversation and gave his contact information.”
Elias Marcelino reports,
“During our devotional on Monday, we read Matthew 11:1, where Jesus had prepared His disciples and sent them to the lost sheep of Israel. But while they were taking the gospel to others, Jesus went to the cities of His disciples. The Holy Spirit ministered deeply to me through this. I really believe that while we obey God’s mandate to reach the lost, He is taking care of our relatives. Tears came to my eyes as I thought about my father and my sister, who have not yet received Jesus.”
“All the Jewish contacts I received were people who wanted to talk as a result of seeing my Jews for Jesus T-shirt. For example, I was broadsiding (handing out our broadside tracts) in Ipanema when I heard a voice coming from a restaurant. A man signaled me that he wanted a broadside. He and his girlfriend both gave their contact information.
Mr. Matatias, whose father is Jewish, began a conversation by saying that Jesus was a good man. I asked if he knew the gospel message, and he replied that he did not. I explained that at the cross, Jesus received the punishment for our sin that makes possible our friendship with God. I asked if he believed on that, and he said yes, and gave his contact information to hear more from us.
Another day a young Jewish man wanted to know about Jesus, and said that his family survived the Holocaust in Poland. He listened as I explained that the Messiah is Yeshua (Jesus) and only those who believe in Him may participate in His kingdom. He gave his information and as we parted, he said we could be in touch with him any time we wanted.