A Genuine Faith Community Transformed Jose’s Life

Jose and Viva Youth

At five years old, Jose left his home to escape his dad’s beatings. After a season in the streets, he ended up under state care in Bogotá, Colombia’s largest and most populous city. Despite the rough start, Jose emerged as a gentle-mannered, sweet, cheerful young man. A talented soccer player, he once had the chance to play in a European championship, only to be denied by bureaucratic barriers — a frustratingly common tale for many youth in state care.

In 2018, a social worker’s recommendation brought Jose to our doors at Viva Youth, a Christ-centered organization providing crucial support to at-risk youth exiting Colombia’s state care system. With us, they aren’t just individuals; they’re family, referred to as “Primos” or cousins, finding solace and an opportunity to heal emotionally while learning essential life skills.

Jose never finished high school, which was the responsibility of the orphan care institution. His communication and academic skills were deficient. Despite efforts to uncover any potential learning disabilities, no conclusive answers were found. After completing Viva Youth’s main life-skills training program, Jose still found himself on and off the streets. He would get on public transportation with a speaker and dance to hip-hop music for coins.

Over the years, our team at Viva Youth helped Jose find jobs, but only a few weeks later, he would come back, telling us that he was in the streets again. We built a  “Jose Handbook” to prepare for his next visit. In our staff meetings, we discussed new and more creative approaches to getting him off the streets. Jose does not use drugs, does not drink, he is not violent. But stability remained elusive.

Then, in July 2022, a transformative moment arrived — Jose embraced faith and was baptized. The following six months saw both triumphs and challenges, yet a newfound openness to guidance emerged. Jose began seeking advice from Viva Youth, signaling a significant shift.

At another pivotal point in February 2023, bolstered by positive changes, we recommended Jose again to an employer. This time, he not only retained his job but excelled, becoming the gatekeeper at a clinical lab on a 1.5-acre property housing the Viva Youth non-profit. Ten months of steady employment shattered previous records, propelling him from a rented room to his furnished apartment.

Jose’s deep connections with the community of kids who exit state care in Bogota (the ones we call Primos) have made him crucial to our work. When Jose finds out that one of them needs help, he refers them to our Resource Center. When they are homeless, Jose’s apartment becomes transitional housing for them. When they hide from us, Jose keeps us updated on their whereabouts and personal situation.

Viva Youth’s 22-week program, while significant, required five years to witness Jose’s remarkable progress. The recurring lesson was clear—beyond programs, youth like Jose need a genuine community of faith that they can call family. Amidst a revolving door of social workers and psychologists, Viva Youth strives to provide enduring connections.

Pray for Jose as he pursues a high school diploma and technical certifications. His story, a witness to the transformative power of faith, community, and education, stands as a living testament to God’s love and Viva Youth’s unwavering support.


Jose Baptism + Viva Youth



When you give to SAM ministries, SAM missionaries, and/or the Vision Fund, you support outreaches like Viva Youth in Colombia. SAM remains dedicated to our Christ-centered vision of Redeemed Lives, Beautiful Churches, and Transformed Communities. We are on mission together. Would you join us? Your donation is tax-deductible. DONATE TODAY!


Viva Youth and Jose



June 2023 Prayer Focus


First of All, Pray

The phrase, “First of All, Pray!”, inspired by 1 Timothy 2:1, is the name of our prayer ministry. It reflects the prominence of prayer within our community. It’s been a mark of our Mission for more than 100 years. The mark remains. First of all, pray—deliberately, intentionally, and in faith, with praise and thanksgiving.

As we serve On Mission Together, please join us in praying for these requests in June 2023:

1. Pray for Ministry to Deaf Students in Pucallpa, Peru. Amanda McKinney and Pastor Carlos teach and mentor Deaf students at Refugio de Esperanza. The school hosts primary, preschool, and special needs schools in the mornings and high school in the afternoons. Carlos works with seven students in the mornings. He rotates between the classrooms to work individually with the Deaf students while the classroom teacher works with the rest of the class. In the afternoon they teach 12 Deaf students. These students are not in regular classrooms but are all together in Amanda’s classroom with Carlos as an assistant. It is challenging and a bit crazy planning lessons around the 12 different students’ levels, but they are learning and thriving. Five of the deaf students are seniors this year, so it is bittersweet for Amanda after seven years of knowing them. Please pray that the Lord helps Amanda and Carlos invest well in the five seniors. 

Peru_Refugio de Esperanza_AmandaMcKinney_highschool deaf students

2. Pray for Member Care in Bolivia. Burnout and mental health struggles are not uncommon for Gospel servants. Natalie Suff ministers holistically for the missionary team in Bolivia. Recently she hosted a day-long spiritual retreat for women from SAM and Latin Link as well as breakfast fellowship. Pray for Natalie as she serves the busy missionary team in Bolivia.

3. Pray for Indigenous ministry in northeast Brazil. For the past several years, a Brazilian missionary pastor, Daniel, has been visiting a remote village in northeastern Brazil. After some initial resistance, he has built relationships within the community and several have come to know the Lord. He has been visiting several times a week and assisted with projects for the community, like building a classroom for the children. The community has a deep love and respect for Daniel. Recently, SAM missionary Todd Carroll had the opportunity to drive Pastor Daniel and other Brazilian missionaries from a seminary to visit the village and build a bathroom with the locals. Pray for the flourishing of this village, Pastor Daniel, and more opportunities to partner with them.

4. Pray for Drew Warrick. Drew serves at Rancho El Camino in La Paz, Mexico. The Ranch serves the youth and families of the area through camps and recreational ministries, community development initiatives, leadership training programs, and church-based ministries. In April, the Ranch held a basketball camp in the local neighborhoods, which was followed by a four-day overnight Easter camp at the Ranch the following week. On the last night of the camp, they fellowshipped around a huge bonfire, and one of the youth shared his testimony in front of over forty of his peers. It is incredible to see how God is transforming his life and shaping him into a leader in the community. Many of the youth walked away from the camp with a greater understanding of the importance of following God’s will in their life and in their community. Pray for Drew and the ministry of Rancho El Camino.

The Ranch_Drew Warrick_Easter Camp

5. Pray for SAM Academy in Pucallpa, Peru. Praise God for SAM Academy’s high school ministry trip to the community of Masaray. The students enjoyed the trip on the river and a productive time at the school in Masaray. They helped out with painting projects and held English classes. When the rain came, they played soccer! Pray for the students in Masaray and at SAM Academy. 

Henrique and Corina6. Pray for Henrique and Corina Terena Dias. Henrique and Corina are passionate about the Indigenous Church in South America. They serve as advisors and coordinators of the Trans Amazon Network. Their desire is to grow Indigenous networks creating other training centers across the continent. And increasing the connection between the national church and the Indigenous church. With the Trans Amazon Network, they visited Ecuador to encourage the non-indigenous church leadership to join the indigenous church leaders to create a consortium with missions agencies and local churches. Pray for the formation of a consortium in Ecuador to support the Indigenous church. Pray for the family and ministry of Henrique and Corina.

7. Pray for Kaylee and Nilton Solier. Nilton and Kaylee Solier serve in Guatemala City. They serve kids in Bethania, an underresourced neighborhood by hosting kids programs. From science classes, music classes, and “splash days,” the Soliers are encouraged to see the kids growing and learning. Recently, someone from their local church donated eight huge garbage bags of sample medications to their ministry in Bethania. They organized and sorted about 700 different types of medications! It was a lot of work, but now they can offer these medications to the health center in Bethania, which they have been exploring how to work with. Pray that these medications will be a blessing to the community, and that they can continue to find ways to work together with other organizations to serve Bethania well.

8. Pray for Candidate Orientation. SAM will be hosting our 2023 Candidate Orientation. Orientation is a time of discernment, learning, connection, and worship. Please pray for each of our participants that God would give wisdom and clarity as they take steps to become SAM missionaries. 

9. Pray for Ministerio Impacto in Pucallpa, Peru. Praise God for a wonderful Mother’s Day celebration in May with Ministerio Impacto, a ministry to the senior citizens of Iglesia Divino Redentor in Pucallpa, Peru. Pray that these women would experience and know the love of God.


10. Pray for Ministry in La Paz, Bolivia. Mike Shank, who serves in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, had the opportunity to go to La Paz to visit some SAM ministry partners, SIM missionary friends, and Pastor Brandon Cooper from Cityview Church (one of the Shank family’s sending churches). Pastor Brandon led a Discipleship Workshop for area churches. Pray that this training will bless the 15 churches represented at the workshop. Pray for Pastor Angel who is being evaluated as a church planter with the Acts 29 ministry. Pray for ministry partners who love fixing up trucks and use it as an opportunity to share the Gospel! Overall there is movement in La Paz and the city of El Alto for ministries and pastors to collaborate around the Gospel. Please pray for the cultivation of this movement.

11. Pray for street ministry in Brazil. Tracey Culley, serving in Recife, Brazil, has joined a ministry at her local church called Voz na Esquina (Voice on the Corner). For over 12 years, the church has brought snacks, water, friendship, and prayer to those involved in the sex industry. This is a complex and humbling ministry. Pray for wisdom and perseverance to continue pursuing this particular group with God’s kindness and love.

Smith Family12. Pray for Dave and Katrina Smith. The Smith Family finished language school in Costa Rica and are settling in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Dave is serving with SAMAIR as both an airplane pilot and mechanic. With a heart for holistic discipleship, Katrina plans to partner with a local organization to help minister to victims of crime. Pray for Dave, Katrina, and their three girls.

April 2023 Prayer Focus

Brazil_2023_Sertao Mission Trip

First of All, Pray

The phrase, “First of All, Pray!”, inspired by 1 Timothy 2:1, is the name of our prayer ministry. It reflects the prominence of prayer within our community. It’s been a mark of our Mission for more than 100 years. The mark remains. First of all, pray—deliberately, intentionally, and in faith, with praise and thanksgiving.

As we serve On Mission Together, please join us in praying for these requests in March 2023:

1. Pray for the Peru team. Last month, the Peru team gathered for their annual conference. Conference is a time of rest, refreshment, and fellowship. John and Shari Thomas from City to City spoke on Luke 15 and the theme, “What is the Gospel?” Pray for SAM’s gospel witness as the Peru team deepen their identity in God and commitment to one another in ministry. 

Peru Teams at Conference 2023

2. Pray for Ammi Training Center. The Great Commission is at the heart of Ammi Training Center as indigenous leaders are trained to take the Gospel into the many tribes of Brazil. Praise the Lord for the first worship service of the school year! This year there are eight different ethnic groups represented in the first-year class.  

3. Pray for Natalie Suff. Natalie lives in Santa Cruz, Bolivia and reaches out to college students through mentoring and English classes. She also hosted an Afternoon Tea with a short presentation on British culture. Please pray for the flourishing of this new ministry. Pray also for strength and wisdom as she cares for the SAM Bolivia missionary team.

4. Pray for Ministerio Impacto. Ministerio Impacto, a ministry of Iglesia Divino Redentor in Pucallpa, Peru, serves senior citizens. This year’s motto is “For Who You Are, We Worship You Lord,” studying the names of God. Pray for fruit in the lives of the senior community of Pucallpa!

Impacto Ministry

5. Pray for the Sertão region of Brazil. The Sertão is a semi-arid region in northeastern Brazil. There are several communities in the Sertão of indigenous peoples and Quilombola: Afro-Brazilians who live in settlements first established by escaped slaves in Brazil. Many of these communities are isolated, experience food and water insecurity, and lack access to resources and opportunities. A team of Brazilians and SAM missionaries traveled to visit a Brazilian missionary couple that the Recife ministry supports. Pray for the Brazilian couple who has been serving in this region for the last ten years, seeking to establish churches and reach these communities with the Gospel.

6. Pray for Larry and Bonnie Secrest. Praise God for the lives and ministry of Larry and Bonnie who will be retiring this summer. Starting in the mid-1970s, Larry and Bonnie have ministered in Peru, Pennsylvania, Florida, and again in Peru. They served with SAM for the past eight years in Lima, Peru. In Lima they invested their time serving several churches, focusing on leadership development and teaching. They also supported VASE (Volunteers in Social Aide and Evangelism). This is a Peruvian not-for-profit organization that provides mercy ministries–especially through foreign and Peruvian medical teams– to serve remote populations. The Secrests will stay involved with the leadership of VASE in their retirement. 

7. Pray for SAM Academy. Once a month the teachers of SAM Academy host a special lunch for the students. Last month they prepared an Asian meal. After lunch they played a swap game. Every five minutes, the bell rang, sending each grade to a different classroom and to experience a new grade level. For example, the 1st and 2nd graders learned about Romeo and Juliet while the high schoolers got to hear the Three Little Ninja Pigs. It was fun to mix things up a little bit and create more community among the staff and students. Please pray for SAM Academy!

SAM Academy Special School Lunch

8. Pray for Board of Directors meetings. SAM’s Board of Directors is on a week-long prayer, care, and oversight trip across Colombia. A lot of ground will be covered, including stops in Bogota, Medellin, and the north coast. Pray that board members will be used by God as they visit indigenous rural ministries as well as churches and training centers in mega-cities. Pray for SAM’s continued obedience to the Lord in Colombia.  

9. Pray for the church in Nicaragua. Pray for pastors in Nicaragua as they try to faithfully communicate truth in an environment where censorship and imprisonment are a part of the national dynamic. SAM missionary Alex C. was able to visit Nicaragua and train pastors through a study of Philippians with special attention to the theme of heavenly citizenship. Pray for faithfulness and growth of the church in one of the most challenging contexts in Latin America. 

10. Pray for Urban church planting in Latin America. Church planting in an urban context can be challenging and lonely. Pray for leaders from across Latin America who were recently trained in Buenos Aires, Argentina to be church-planter coaches. They help provide important support in strategy, gospel communication, and perseverance for many local pastors. 

Agentina City to City Coaching

March 2023 Prayer Focus

March 2023 Prayer Focus

First of All, Pray

The phrase, “First of All, Pray!”, inspired by 1 Timothy 2:1, is the name of our prayer ministry. It reflects the prominence of prayer within our community. It’s been a mark of our Mission for more than 100 years. The mark remains. First of all, pray—deliberately, intentionally, and in faith, with praise and thanksgiving.

As we serve On Mission Together, please join us in praying for these requests in March 2023:

1. Pray for Lima Initiative. Lima Initiative and City to City Latin America hosted a “city lab” in February for church leaders from Lima, Peru. The theme was “How to Communicate the Gospel to a Post-Modern and Secular Culture” led by Victor Cruz. This was a time for leaders to exchange ideas and reflect on ways to share the hope of the gospel. Pray for the flourishing of the gospel in Lima.

2. Pray for Recife Music Ministry. Master’s Touch, a music school ministry in Recife, Brazil, is back in session. They have started a new year and new classes with lots of new students! The music school trains local worship leaders as well as offers classes to kids in the community. Please pray for the teachers and students to grow in skill and ability, the love of music, and as individuals to the praise of God’s glory.

3. Praise for SAMAIR Peru’s new airplane. We have watched in wonder as God provided SAMAIR Peru with a replacement for their floatplane, which was destroyed in a storm on November 8, 2020.  SAMAIR Peru is celebrating one year with the new plane (N9691Z). Watch this video and give praise to God for His provision. Pray for the future fruit of SAMAIR Peru and the ministries they support.

4. Pray for Millers in language school. Daniel and Rebecca are finishing up their last term at language school. In June, they will join the ministry team in Bolivia. Language school is more than learning grammar but includes public speaking classes, learning to share the gospel and testimonies, and skills to communicate with different ages. Pray that the Millers finish this term well and that God will use this preparation to bear fruit in their relationships and ministry in Bolivia.

5. Pray for Casa Wájaro. After years of work, campaigns, and a lot of searching, the Wájaro Foundation bought a house in February to serve as “Casa Wájaro.” After some remodeling, Casa Wájaro will support the indigenous churches and communities of Colombia. Aside from offices for the Foundation, the house will be a place for hospitality, an Airbnb, a cafe, and an artisan shop. Pray for the remodeling work to be done quickly so this space can support the indigenous communities’ goals of peace, justice, and collective well-being.

6. Pray for IBC Bustamante. Happy belated anniversary IBC Bustamante in Peru! In January, Iglesia Biblica Cristiana Bustamante celebrated two years of faithfulness and care of God. Even in the pandemic with severe lockdowns in Peru, this Body of Christ found a way to bloom, grow, and care for each other and the community. Seth and Jessica Malec, serving with TEAM, and Ally Lee, serving with SAM, are a part of the church family. Please pray for the flourishing of this young church and the provision of a Peruvian pastor to shepherd the congregation.

7. Pray for Tracey Culley and Recife youth. In Recife, Brazil a youth Bible study reconnected with a game night to begin the new year. Tracey is leading this group with a desire to point the youth to Jesus and see them mature in their walks with God. Pray that God would help her as she is transitioning to leading the study on her own. Pray that God would use her to disciple and raise up some of the youth to lead alongside her. Also, pray that God would bring youth from the neighborhood to be consistently involved.

8. Pray for Colombian pastors. Pray for these Colombian pastors, their families, and their churches: Julián, José, Ronald, Arturo, Wilson, Andres, Julio, Fredy, and Wilmer. These men meet regularly for study, prayer, mutual encouragement, and spiritual growth. They represent churches in Santa Marta, Ciénaga, Cartagena, Medellín, and Bucaramanga. Pray for their churches to reach their communities with the good news of Jesus.

9. Pray for Chris and Cristi Haylett. Chris and Cristi serve with Nueva Esperanza (New Hope) Church in Armenia, Colombia. They desire to see the local community transformed by the Gospel. In January, the church participated in Operation Christmas Child (OCC) training. They will give gift boxes to children and invite them to join a discipleship study about Jesus called “La Gran Aventura (The Great Adventure).” Pray for the children who will hear about Jesus through the OCC gift boxes.

10. Pray for IBC Ayacucho. Praise God that the IBC (Iglesia Biblica Cristina) church in Ayacucho, Peru has a new pastor, César Shupingahua and his family from Lima. Rick and Donna Martin (SAM Missionaries) are excited to partner with Pastor César to reach Ayacucho with the love of Christ. The church recently hosted a kids’ program for families in the neighborhood. Pray for unity in this young church and that God would raise up more lay leadership within the body of Christ.

11. Pray for Serina Arias. Serina and her friend, Elayne, hosted a tea for their teen girls’ book club from their church in Medellín, Colombia. It was the first time the group could get together in person since the pandemic! The teens’ moms also attended and enjoyed fellowship and mutual encouragement. Pray that the Lord would bless the group of girls. Pray that they grow in faith and love for one another, their families, and their church.

12. Pray for Todd and Erika Carroll. Todd and Erika and their kids relocated and launched a new ministry in João Pessoa on the far eastern tip of Brazil. This northeast area has the second highest concentration of Indigenous people, plus three other minority groups considered unreached and underserved in Brazil: the Quilombolas, the Sertanejos, and the Gypsies. This opportunity for witness builds on their past ministry in this geographic area as well as their more recent work at Ammi Training Center. Pray for open doors as Todd and Erika minister in João Pessoa.

13. Pray for Kat Guild. In Barranquilla, Colombia, Kat hosts friends and acquaintances weekly in her home for “English nights.” This diverse group of 20-somethings gathers Wednesday evenings to practice English by discussing different topics around cultures, values, and worldviews. Kat is grateful for the openness of her peers. Please pray that genuine relationships are established within the group. Pray for those who don’t know Jesus. That they would come to see Him a little more clearly through the conversation and the time shared with one another.

SAMAIR Peru: Video Update

SAMAIR Peru One Year Update

Warm greetings from SAMAIR Peru!

We trust that 2023 is off to a good start for you and your family. We are happy to announce that the new airplane, N9691Z, has just completed one year of mission service here in the jungles of Peru. She has been the main work-horse of our fleet this year and has performed flawlessly.

We are so thankful to all who were a part of this project, either through prayer or financial support. We hope that you will be encouraged by God’s faithfulness when you watch this video update.

Thank you,

Craig Gahagen
Program Manager, SAMAIR Peru



If you want to support SAMAIR Peru’s ministry, please click HERE to give online.

You may also make a check payable to South America Mission and write our account number “74422-SAMAIR Peru” in the memo line and mail it to SAM’s US office: 1021 Maxwell Mill Rd, Suite B, Fort Mill, SC 29708.



February 2023 Prayer Focus

First of All, Pray

The phrase, “First of All, Pray!”, inspired by 1 Timothy 2:1, is the name of our prayer ministry. It reflects the prominence of prayer within our community. It’s been a mark of our Mission for more than 100 years. The mark remains. First of all, pray—deliberately, intentionally, and in faith, with praise and thanksgiving.

As we serve On Mission Together, please join us in praying for these requests in February 2023:

1. Pray for the Shawi Church. Last month, the Shawi church in Peru hosted its annual training conference for church leaders from the various villages of their tribe. SAMAIR Peru supports this endeavor by flying in some of the participants and trainers, saving some of them several days of travel by land. Over three days two pilots flew 189 passengers making 66 landings! Pray for the ministry of SAMAIR Peru and the vision and growth of the Shawi church.

2. Pray for SAMAIR Bolivia. In order to minister effectively in Bolivia, SAMAIR Bolivia planes are under continual maintenance. Carrying out safe and legal maintenance in Bolivia can often be a challenge due to political unrest in the country. Our Cessna 206 has been going through heavy maintenance for the past year, but praise God we are almost done. Please pray for the successful completion of the overhaul and SAMAIR Bolivia’s ministry.

3. Pray for CCB. Centro de Capacitación Biblica (CCB) is a Bible training institute located in Pucallpa, Peru. It serves 21 different indigenous groups in the Amazon basin with students coming as far as the border with Ecuador and Puerto Maldonado in the south. Its purpose is to train indigenous church leaders in doctrine, Bible, and ministry while allowing the students to be connected to their families, churches, and land. CCB started a new school year in January with a little over 50 students representing 6 different ethnic groups. Pray for director William Hidalgo, staff, and students.

4. Pray for IBC churches in Peru. Pastors and spouses of the IBC (Iglesia Biblica Cristiana) denomination in Peru gathered for a retreat in Lima last month. Unfortunately, due to political unrest, pastors from Arequipa were unable to attend. They enjoyed fellowship and studying Ephesians together. SAM missionaries Rick and Donna Martin who are working with an IBC church in Ayacucho participated and deepened the partnership with their new pastor. Please pray for the churches and pastors of the IBC. 

5. Pray for Julián and Serina Arias. Julián and Serina serve in church training and development in Medellín, Colombia. They recently returned to Verdad y Vida church in the town of Sabaneta to teach another round of Ser Biblica conferences, this time on church membership. They have been serving at this church for a year and have been so blessed to hear church leaders’ testimonies of their continued discipleship and growth in Christ and the Scriptures. 

6. Pray for the African-American Church. Pray for our brothers and sisters in the African-American church as they send missionaries around the world. Pray for their support raising efforts and gospel outreach.

7. Pray for SAM Academy. In December 2022, SAM Academy in Pucallpa, Peru joined with Iglesia Esmirna in the community of Manantay to share Christmas with the youth of their church. The high school students presented the Life of Christ through a musical drama while the middle schoolers shared His Birth through a fun song and dance. The elementary students sang Jesus es Navidad, a song that shows Jesus is the reason for Christmas. After sharing hot chocolate and panetón, the students presented each child with a special gift purchased especially for them. Thanks to a donation from Renovation Church in Rome, GA, every one of the 50 children also received their own Bible. Please pray for the children of Iglesia Esmirna and the students of SAM Academy. 

8. Pray for Retiring Missionaries. David and Rachel Powell and Frank and Luz Zajicek will retire after many years of service with SAM. The Powells served in Colombia and Peru, and the Zajiceks served in Bolivia and Colombia. Praise God for the many years of faithful and fruitful service, and pray for both families as they enter retirement. 

9. Pray for Matthias and Rosemary Drochner. Matthias and Rosemary serve in Lima, Peru. Matthias has a passion for theological education and teaches students at a seminary in Lima and an institute in Pucallpa. Rosemary is a nurse at an international school. They both serve with Iglesia de la Ciudad and host the youth group at their home. 

10. Pray for Dan and Julie Snyder. Dan and Julie served in Brazil for many years but have recently moved stateside. They will assist with international ministries and staff development in SAM’s Home Office (Fort Mill, SC). Their years of experience will be a great asset to these areas. Please pray for the Snyders during this transition.

11. Pray for the Peru Personnel Team. Cristina Thomas, Stephanie Edgar, Sarah Sheets, Amanda McKinney, and Minori Lucas serve on the Peru Personnel team. Pray for wisdom as they desire to better serve our Peru team. Also, pray for the planning and preparation for the Peru Missionary Team Conference for spiritual renewal in March. 

Growing Together in Recife, Brazil

Recife Redemptive Ministries: Growing Together

20 years of growing together in Recife…and seeing lives transformed!

Partnering with local churches, Recife Redemptive ministries responds to encountered needs in Brazil, demonstrating God’s heart for the impoverished in their communities. We minister in peoples’ lives in ways that let them know that God and His people value them. One of those ways is to alleviate suffering through providing adequate housing, food, and clothing. Additionally, we invest personal time, teach, encourage, and counsel, as a means of aligning lives with God’s priorities and will.  The hope of Recife Redemptive ministries is to see Gospel transformation in the lives of our neighbors.

Read about John who first connected to Recife Redemptive ministries through short-term mission trips. Recently, he played a significant role in helping our ministry provide care and training to local pastors. Leaders from Downline Ministries, based out of Tennessee, traveled to SAM Center in Recife to facilitate a weekend of training and development for local pastors. The weekend focused on the topic of discipleship and challenged these pastors to engage leaders within their church plus seek true growth and transformation in the gospel.

Read about Josenildo (Jose) who we connected with in our first years serving this community. Jose is an example of someone that has grown with the Recife ministry, and a humbling reminder of the intricate ways God weaves together stories and experiences. He was impacted by discipleship and intentional relationships through our ministries and is now giving back through his work at the SAM Center.



with a gift to Recife Redemptive Ministries
Matching campaign ends on Tuesday, January 31

In December 2022, a donor called and surprised us with a matching grant through the end of January 2023. Any new or additional (*) donations given to Recife Redemptive Ministry by January 31 are being matched up to $20,000. We cannot stop praising God!

Would you join us on this mission to raise $20,000 by January 31? The $20,000 raised will then become $40,000…and that means every one of your dollars has double the impact on our ministry.


Faces of Wajáro
“We live in the midst of an armed conflict and illicit drug cultivation. The majority choose the easy job and the good money of marijuana and coca. My crop has always been coffee, corn, and bananas. Now we are working on a laying hens project with Wájaro. We thank God for Wájaro and how together, we have been able to advance!”
Victor Hurtado, Nasa Community, Sustainable Economic Development, Income Generation, Agriculture
Victor is a Nasa Indigenous Christian who lives in Toribio, Colombia. He and his family have witnessed a lifetime of violence. Today, when you mention Toribio, the common Colombian will shutter, not only because of its bloody past, but because the fertile soil of this region continues to fuel the illicit drug trade where armed groups continue to be the boss of the land.
The last time our team visited this community, our educational workshops were interrupted with the sound of automatic rifles and the classroom shook from a bomb in the nearby “vereda” (neighboring settlement). For our students, this was nearly background noise, a familiar beat on the soundtrack of their lives.
The darkness of night is interrupted by thousands of white lights; beautiful as they may seem on the surface, these lights illuminate illicit marijuana crops, kept lit through the night for warmth. To fight against this difficult reality, the Coopahobelén Cooperative was founded, with hope to provide alternative economic resources for the community. However, this small community has decided that, although much harder, they will follow the ethical path.
They grow coffee on their land and with your generous donations, Wájaro began a chicken/egg shed project with the cooperative, with the hopes of becoming the largest provider in the region. The chickens had just arrived the week prior to our trip. Wájaro and Coopahobelén also have dreams of working together with their coffee in the future, if we have the resources to do so.
Join us as we continue to work with communities like the Nasa and create projects for peace in 2023.
FUNDRAISING CAMPAIGN for 2023 ends on January 5
Goal: $130,000
$100,000 For 2023 Projects
$30,000 For Casa Wájaro Remodel
Your Donation Will
Support projects in 2023
• Community Organizing Support
• Cooperative/Association Development
• Literacy, Education & Spiritual Formation
• Sustainable Economic Development & Income Generation
• Sustainable Agriculture
• Women & Youth Leadership Development
• Cultural Preservation
• Peace & Reconciliation Initiatives
Support Casa Wájaro
• Provide Crucial Funding For Casa Wájaro Remodel

January 2023 Prayer Focus

First of All, Pray

The phrase, “First of All, Pray!”, inspired by 1 Timothy 2:1, is the name of our prayer ministry. It reflects the prominence of prayer within our community. It’s been a mark of our Mission for more than 100 years. The mark remains. First of all, pray—deliberately, intentionally, and in faith, with praise and thanksgiving.

As we serve On Mission Together, please join us in praying for these requests in January 2023:

1. Pray for the Peru Field. As we begin 2023, pray God’s blessing over the Peru field. Pray for ministries, relationships, partnerships, and planning for the year ahead. Our team includes Mike and Kelli Anderson, David and Stephanie Boogard, Mike and Marcy Brown, Bill and Joy Carrera, Alex Chiang, Julio and Olga Chiang, Ryan and Jenny Dawson, Matthias and Rosemary Drochner, Todd and Stephanie Edgar, Sam Fiala, Craig and Heather Gahagan, Tom and Rita Hough, Ally Lee, John and Minori Lucas, Mike and Nancy Mahon, Seth and Jessica Malec, Rick and Donna Martin, Amanda McKinney, Larry and Bonnie Secrest, Dave and Marilyn Simmons, Jason and Sarah Sheets, Phillip and Brooke Sneed, David and Lisa Speyers, and Kyle and Cristina Thomas.

2. Pray for the Brazil Field. As we begin 2023, pray God’s blessing over the Brazil field. Pray for ministries, relationships, partnerships, and planning for the year ahead. Our team includes Don and Vera Bergson, Todd and Erika Carroll, Tracey Culley, and Craig and Mary DeLille. 

3. Pray for the Colombia Field. As we begin 2023, pray God’s blessing over the Colombia field. Pray for ministries, relationships, partnerships, and planning for the year ahead. Our team includes Julian and Serina Arias, Joel and Angel Ballew, Jorge and Ginny Enciso, Kat Guild, Chris and Cristi Haylett, Jake and Lauren Jones, and Frank and Luz Zajicek.

4. Pray for the Bolivia Field. As we begin 2023, pray God’s blessing over the Bolivia field. Pray for ministries, relationships, partnerships, and planning for the year ahead. Our team includes Micah and Haley Bittner, Greg Dahl, Jeff HAuse, Daniel and Rebekah Miller, Daniel and Alejandra Netzlaff, Dalmiro and Laura Ortiz, Eric and Zola Ryan, Mike and Marina Shank, Dave and Katrina Smith, Natalie Suff, Jason and Jenna Weigner, and Dana Wilson-Pinto.

5. Pray for Guatemala. As we begin 2023, pray God’s blessing over SAM’s partnerships in Guatemala. Pray for ministries, relationships, and planning for the year ahead. Our team includes Nilton and Kaylee Solier and TEAM partners Justin and Jenny Burkholder.

6. Pray for Mexico. As we begin 2023, pray God’s blessing over SAM’s partnerships in Mexico. Pray for ministries, relationships, and planning for the year ahead. Our team includes Drew Warrick and TEAM partners Pete and Emily Johnson.

7. Pray for SAM’s Home Office. As we begin 2023, pray God’s blessing over the SAM home office staff. Pray for wisdom, unity, and planning for the year ahead. Our team includes Ellen Adkins, Serina Arias, Katherine Buehler, Stephanie Hardy, Brad and Jennie Hopper, Carolyn Mullen, Bill and Lennie Ogden, Kirk and Emily Ogden, Mark Powers, Craig and Sue Querfeld, Eric and Kymm Schultz, Paige Thompson, Stephanie Tinker, and Leah Wallace.

8. Pray for Ammi Training Center. The Ammi Training Center in Brazil celebrated graduation last month. Please pray for these seven graduates, who represent five different ethnic groups, as they return to minister in their villages.

9. Pray for Bible translation in Bolivia. Daniel and Alejandra Netzlaff are facilitating the translation of the New Testament into the Araona dialect in Bolivia. They are working with several Araona families. Please pray for accuracy as they work toward a table read in March. 

10. Pray for Craig and Heather Gahagan. Craig and Heather Gahagan have served many years in Pucallpa, Peru in partnership with SAM and Mission to the World. They have a passion for disciple men and women to follow Christ. They are both leaders in their local church, Mil Palmeras, and Craig is the director of SAMAIR Peru. Pray for the ministry of the Gahagans.








11. Pray for Nilton and Kaylee Solier. Nilton and Kaylee Solier serve kids and teenagers through a tutoring and after-school program in Bethania, a neighborhood of Guatemala City. In the past few months, they have hosted science, art, and music workshops, as well as a trip to a local farm. Please pray for wisdom as they seek to holistically serve this community. 

12. Pray for Ammi Training Center. The students at Ammi in Brazil enjoy playing soccer and volleyball, but the court has been in great need of repair. After months of planning, Ammi received donations for the materials from Brazilian supporters, and a church in Cuiaba offered to come and work alongside the students and staff to rebuild the court. Praise God for the partnership with the Brazilian church and supporters. Pray that this new court would be a blessing to the fellowship at Ammi.







November 2022 Prayer Focus

Praise and Thanksgiving

I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth. Psalm 34:

Do most of our devotional times consist of asking and receiving? Are we mostly thinking of our wants, and rarely of the benefits we receive? Are we the recipients of His mercies, but rarely praise for what He has done for us? Do we even stop to praise God because He’s God?

Yes, we need to build the habit of saying “thank you” to God in response to all his gifts. Yes, we should also remember to praise God for everything He has done. Above all, we should praise God for who He is. He is worthy of all praise, honor, and glory.

This month, we are trying to focus more on praising God for how He is working in South America and our mission organization. Our praise for God grows out of our love for Him. In all these praises, we are not just showing gratitude and offering thanksgiving, but praising Him because He is faithful, merciful, righteous, and just in all things.


1. Pray for the Netzlaffs. New SAM appointees Daniel and Alejandra Netzlaff participated in a missions conference with Steele Creek Church in Charlotte, NC recently. Praise God for opportunities to share the vision for their ministry in Bolivia with the Araona tribe.


2. Pray for SAM Board Meetings. Praise God for the faithful women and men who serve on the SAM Board of Directors. They are gathering this week to discern God’s vision and direction for the mission. Pray for a fruitful time of celebration, reflection, and planning. 

3. Pray for Amanda McKinney. Praise God for the ministry to the Deaf community in Pucallpa, Peru. SAM missionary Amanda McKinney serves alongside Pastor Carlos. Carlos, beloved by his students and church, has been serving the Deaf for many years, teaching and pastoring the community at Refugio. Pray that God would bring someone to work alongside Carlos as he nears retirement.

4. Pray for Serina and Julian Arias. Julian and Serina serve at a church in Caldas, Colombia twice a month. Julián encourages the children in the congregation by giving them a worksheet each Sunday where they can draw what they hear in the sermon. At the end of the service, the children are invited to share their drawings. What a joy to see what they learned and to give them the opportunity to encourage the adults as they all grow from the preaching of God’s Word. Praise God for the gift of children!


5. Pray for Lima Initiative. Lima Initiative, in partnership with City to City Latin America, promotes gospel movements (Ecosystems) that bring social, cultural, and spiritual transformation to the cities of Peru. In the city of Lima, local leaders identified, recruited, and formed the team that will be leading the movement. Praise God for these women and men who have a vision to see churches and local organizations partner together to build the Kingdom of God. Pray for the members of this team: Francis Castañeda, Vincent Cross, Sander Verduijin, Giselle Bellido, Julio Chiang and Olga Chiang.

6. Pray for the Van Oostens in Pucallpa, Peru. We are thankful that Erik and Cristy Van Oosten and their two boys have joined the SAM team in Pucallpa, Peru. Erik serves with SAMAIR providing for our logistics needs. Cristy teaches 1st and 2nd grade at SAM Academy. Pray for their transition and team dynamics. 

7. Pray for Drew Warrick. Praise God for Drew’s work at Rancho El Camino (a ministry of TEAM) in Mexico. For the first half of 2022, the area surrounding the ranch was in a drought. Drew and the team prayed for a hurricane with lots of water but minimal wind damage, which was delivered! The dry riverbed behind Rancho El Camino was filled with rushing streams of water. Pete Johnson, the Ranch’s director, commented that he didn’t remember the water ever being that high in his decade there. Drew shared this insight and photo recently: “To me, it gives a whole new meaning to Isaiah’s imagery of God making rivers in the desert.”


8. Pray for SAM Mobilization. Praise God for the missions conference at Moody Bible Institute and Columbia International University. It was a wonderful time to interact with students who are discerning God’s call on their life. We praise God that many students are specifically considering missionary service in South America.

9. Pray for SAM Center Team in Recife, Brazil. Praise God that we have completed initial renovations on the SAM Center in Recife, Brazil. We are currently using the facility for ministry activities such as youth retreats, ministry retreats, and discipleship training. Pray for opportunities to rent the facility to local churches for their activities and to generate income to sustain the Center.

10. Pray for Viva Youth. In Bogota, Colombia many young adults aging out of state foster care institutions encounter the Kingdom of God while attending training provided by the ministry of Viva Youth. Thank God for Aula who is a newly adopted member of God’s family. Praise God for baptisms and the growing family of faith in Colombia. 


11. Pray for Kaylee and Nilton Solier. We praise God for Kaylee and Nilton’s work in Bethania, a red zone of Guatemala City. Many children there are considered “social orphans” because of the lack of adult involvement in their lives, and they have few opportunities for the future. The Soliers serve in an after-school program where kids and teens receive tutoring and learn new skills that should create more opportunities for them.

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