SAMS Prayer line

The latest prayer line from SAMS GB.

Pupils in the Primary Department of St Andrew’s School in Asunción, Paraguay, are beginning their end-of-year exams this week. Please pray for them and their teachers.

Associate Mission Partners Stuart & Kathryn Broughton are seeking new working visas to continue their ministry among Portuguese speakers in Sydney, Australia. They expected to be notified by the end of October, but are yet to hear a response to their application, so please pray.

On Friday (7th) the annual distribution of wheelchairs begins in Lima, Peru, in conjunction with the Peruvian charity Corazones Unidos. Pat Blanchard, whose Shalom ministry to the disabled has grown encouragingly, will be involved. Please pray.

And three events in northeast Brazil for our prayers:

Ruth Hollingdale Vilella asks us to pray for a big thanksgiving service and party on Thursday (6th) for all ex-participants of the pregnancy group at the House of Hope project in Recife, together with their babies
a youth conference this weekend on the theme of celibacy before marriage, with ten young people from Siméa & Ian Meldrum’s church of Living Waters in Olinda attending
Siméa herself is speaking at a diocesan conference for women on Saturday in João Pessoa on the subject, ‘Breaking the poverty cycle’.

Prayer line

SAMS GB Prayer line for this week:

… starts as a Praise Line. Thank you, first of all, for praying at the end of September for the visit of Murray & Penny Metcalfe and family to Buenos Aires. Their trip from Asunción in search of British documentation for their adopted Paraguayan children was successful, with visas granted and passports forthcoming. Let’s praise God for this, and pray for the Metcalfes as they prepare to leave Paraguay in December after many years’ service.

Secondly, Marcus & Tamara Throup thank us for prayers for the men’s Cursilho event in João Pessoa, Brazil, in mid-October. 39 men attended and many gave their lives to the Lord, including an atheist who was baptised at the end of the event. So again let’s give God the praise, and continue to remember those men in prayer.

Tomorrow in Reus in northeast Spain a meeting is held between Sue Woodcock from Sabadell, Rafa Arencón from Reus itself, Peter Jordan and English chaplains to discuss the development of Anglican ministry in the region. Please pray for this gathering and its outcome.

Jill Ball returned to Ecuador two weeks ago after UK leave. Pray for Jill in resumption of her ministry to the disabled and marginalised of the Santo Domingo area.

Finally, a reminder to keep in prayer:

* this weekend’s retreat for women of the Diocese of Peru, held in Arequipa and involving Penny Marcés
* Richard Crofts of SAMS GB who is himself in Peru until Monday (3rd) when he moves to Brazil
* Walter Barrientos in Bolivia, continuing his treatment for cancer of the larynx.

Boystown Orphanage


Boystown orphanage boysFifty years ago Boys Town was founded by the Revd. K. Riebs, at that time Chaplain to the English congregation at Christ Church, with the objective of rescuing abandoned boys from the streets of Rio de Janeiro and giving them a home and education to prepare them for life and avoid them falling into a life of crime. A site was obtained in the mountains in Araras, near Petropolis, away from the pollution and temptations of the city, where 68, or more, boys would live and go to school, and an Orphanage was established.

A school was started in Araras, by the Anglican Episcopal Church of Brasil, which continues to function very well today, and where all these 68 boys were able to study.

Therefore, many people are rightly asking, why Boys Town only has 14 boys resident today, despite the fact that the school is functioning very well.

I first came to know Boys Town in 1975 when it was very ably run internally by Edgar and Amy Nichols, a SAMS missionary couple with help from Revd. John Saunders and his wife Judith. A Board of Directors from the Brazilian Anglican Episcopal Church took care of the financial and business administration from the Diocese of Rio de Janeiro. I became a member of this Board of Directors shortly after that time and have remained on the Board ever since.

In 1975 we had about 67 boys occupying the older buildings and also enjoying newer buildings which had just been completed. After Edgar Nichols died suddenly, the Board of Directors was faced with the problem of finding someone to continue as internal administrator. Several people tried for short periods and much of that time involved the then treasurer, Mrs. Irene Steinberg, and myself on occasion, spending time at the Home caring for the everyday needs of the boys. Finally we found a couple who were able to live there and take over the internal administration, which they did for some 20 years, until retiring a few years ago. Since then the Board has continued with the work employing various internal administrators, but many things have changed.

In 1990 a Federal Law was passed bringing in the “Estatuto da Criança e do Adolescente” known as ECA. All child care institutions are governed by this Statute, which although well intentioned often defeats the purpose, making it impossible for an NGO to comply with all the rules and regulations governing child care. The cost of caring for each child has been more than trebled for us because of the exigencies of these laws which include the necessity of employing professional staff, such as psychologist, nutritionist and social worker, as well as the normal people needed to care for a large “family”, 24 hours, 7 days a week but who, by law, can only work for so many hours at a time!

Officially the word – orphanage – no longer exists! It is now a “Shelter” and a child may only be “kept” there for a limited time with every attempt being made to return the child to family or find a substitute family (adoption). This in itself is good, but often to return a child to his family requires a great deal of work with that family, sometimes helping the family to larger and better accommodation, treatment for parents with problems (alcohol and drug abuse), providing a “cesta basica”, finding employment for them as well as making sure that the child is adequately cared for, not left on the street to his own devices, while his parents are working. This last is part of our new objective to provide this help to boys and their families, we are working towards a program of Day Care, where children can come to Boys Town in the morning or afternoon when they are not at regular school, enjoy a good meal, and receive help from qualified teachers in their studies as well as extracurricular activities.

At this moment we only have 14 boys living at Boys Town, but on the premises we have a lively pre-school program, are developing a crèche as well as the Day Care. We hope to have at least 40 children benefitting from these new outreaches by the beginning of next year.

A final point, owing to limitations of judicial areas we are no longer able to receive boys from any other municipal area but Petropolis, which includes Araras, therefore the original objective of Rev. Riebs of rescuing boys from Rio is no longer possible, in fact we had a year long fight over one little boy who was very happy with us, but was not allowed to stay because he came from another municipality! So that is why we are having to change our objectives, but we hope to continue to rescue children, and their whole families, with the help of our faithful supporters during all these years.

Noreen Smith.

Prayer Line

The latest SAMS GB prayer line:

This weekend two churches celebrate anniversaries. On Sunday (12th) the Església de Crist in Sabadell, Spain, pastored by Sue Woodcock, holds a special service for its 105th birthday, while from Saturday (11th) the very much younger congregation of Living Waters in Olinda, Brazil, begins a celebration lasting over a week, including children’s outings, competitions, and services on the rubbish dump and in church. Siméa & Ian Meldrum pastor this church. Pray for God’s blessing on everyone through these celebrations.

Also this weekend the Diocese of Northern Argentina holds its ninth EJE (Youth Encounter), starting on Friday. Pray for the leadership team and for the young people invited, that many will have an authentic encounter with the Lord.

Finally, please continue to remember the critical need for rain to end the drought in the Paraguayan Chaco.

Prayer line

Among the many parts of the world enduring extreme weather conditions is southern Chile, where floods have caused considerable suffering and loss. Please pray for the people of that area, and include in your prayers Bishop Abelino & Paty Apeleo, the Anglican churches and the two schools – William Wilson School in Chol-Chol and the School for the Deaf in Temuco. (Photos may be viewed on the diocesan website

In Olinda, northeast Brazil, Ian & Siméa Meldrum have put their house on the market and want to move to a smaller place which will meet their needs and be safe. Pray for them in this, alongside their very busy ministries among the poor.

Praise God for answered prayer for Alejandro Mesco’s visa which arrived in time for him to travel to the UK, where he’s now visiting churches and telling of his pioneer ministry in Peru’s Colca Canyon. Please continue to uphold him.

Finally, three prayer points from Paraguay:

On Thursday (11th) the third Alpha Course begins in the centre of Asunción, involving the folk of St Andrew’s Church and the San Andrés morning and evening congregations. Pray for all involved, including pastors Agustín Maidana and Patrick Butler.

This weekend FEISA’s final indigenous nursery project visit to Yatnata, in the Paraguayan Chaco, takes place. Pray for Samantha Parsons and all participants.

Next week (15th -) is Youth Week at St Andrew’s School with a number of special activities. Pray for everyone involved.

Prayer line

The latest prayer line from SAMS GB:

SAMS Latin Partner Alejandro Mesco is due to arrive on Friday from Peru to spend much of September in the UK visiting his link churches. Pray for his visa, yet to arrive, for his time here, and for Doris and the family back home in Arequipa.

In João Pessoa in northeast Brazil Archdeacon Souza is suffering from an infection in the ureter which may necessitate the removal of a kidney. His colleague Marcus Throup asks us to pray for his recovery, and also for Marcus himself with extra preaching responsibilities each Sunday.

Meantime in Asunción, Paraguay, Linn Tedman is recovering from a broken toe. Uphold Linn in prayer in this and in her teacher-librarian work at St Andrew’s School.

Linn highlights again the need for more teachers at the school, particularly for the Secondary section. Please pray for this, and keep Head Gwen Carlisle, Deputy Mags Southern and all the staff in your prayers.

SAMS Prayer line

Here is the latest prayer line from SAMS GB.

On Friday SAMS Latin Partners Josias & Dani de Souza arrive in the UK from Recife, Brazil, for a visit to supporting churches. Josias will be here for 6 weeks while Dani returns in mid-September. Pray God will bless their journey and their time here; remember too their UK friend and link-person Graham Lowcock as he oversees their visit.

At the same time please uphold SAMS Latin Partner Coordinator Mary Rollin as she finalises the plans for the visit in September of Alejandro Mesco from Peru.

This Sunday will be Peter Jordan’s final one as chaplain of St George’s, Barcelona. Pray for this special day and for Peter and Barbara as during retirement they continue to work with Spanish- and English-speaking groups.

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