Boas Novas Church Brazil – Sister Valerie Thom

Welcome to Boas Novas Church, nestled in the heart of the Marie Paula district of Niteroi, within the vibrant state of Rio. A mere 13 km across the iconic bridge from the bustling city of Rio de Janeiro, our church stands as a beacon of hope and compassion.

Boas Novas Church stands in solidarity with the most marginalised in our community, displaying unwavering dedication despite our modest resources. At its helm is Pastor Carlos, a compassionate leader, supported by his devoted wife, Roberta. With very limited income, Pastor Carlos and the church elders invest not only their time but also any available funds into its operations.

Step through our doors and experience a warmth that is unparalleled. Our doors are open wide, offering solace and sustenance to all who enter. Pastor Carlos, driven by an unshakable passion for spreading the message of Jesus, devotes his full-time efforts to both the church and the community.

The recent pandemic has dealt a harsh blow, particularly to those already living on the fringes. Despite these challenges, Boas Novas Church has remained a steadfast pillar of support. We’ve extended our helping hand to the local community, providing essential food baskets, cleaning supplies, and even contributing to health expenses.

Pastor Carlos, a testament to resilience, battled heart problems and emerged stronger. His unwavering commitment to his calling is evident in every aspect of his work.

A striking illustration of our church’s unity shines through a heartwarming anecdote. In 2019, when a team undertook the task of painting our church, the local community rallied alongside us. The collaborative spirit transcended mere tasks, as we learned that partnership meant sharing responsibilities. While we painted, our church family took up the mantle of cleaning. As we bid farewell, our church radiated unity, with Brazilian and Northern Irish flags adorning the space, a true testament to the harmonious blending of cultures.

As we gather in prayer, we beseech:

  • May the light of Jesus illuminate the lives of those in our community.
  • Let job opportunities abound for the most vulnerable among us.
  • Bless our outreach efforts through social events and women’s conferences.
  • Strengthen the partnership between Sams and our church, amplifying our impact.
  • Open doors for future collaborations, allowing us to return and continue our work.
  • Gratefully acknowledge the church family’s boundless generosity and open hearts.

Join us in our mission, where faith, compassion, and unity converge to create a brighter tomorrow for all.

Together, we are a testament to the power of faith in action, and we invite you to stand with us as we journey forward, transforming lives and spreading the love of Christ.


Claire’s Trip to Brazil & Paraguay 2023

Claire’s Trip to Brazil & Paraguay 2023

It was an incredible experience to spend three weeks in South America in March, where I had the privilege of visiting churches and meeting with leaders

in Brazil and Paraguay. Returning to this region always feels like coming home, as I have spent a considerable amount of time there. It’s truly a blessing to have two homes!

During my visit, I was deeply moved by several aspects that also serve as prayer points for our agency:

  • The diverse range of ministries in Paraguay is remarkable, including churches, schools, a teacher training college, a children’s home providing temporary shelter for waiting children, and shelters for indigenous people. Witnessing the church’s various outreach efforts is truly inspiring. Please join us in praying for these ministries, that the Lord will abundantly provide for their needs, sustain and guide them, and continue to raise up leaders after His own heart.
  • Despite the numerous challenges faced by individuals in their daily lives and ministries, it is awe-inspiring to witness their unwavering hope in Christ. Please pray for their continued strength and resilience, and for the Lord towork in and through each person, empowering them to overcome obstacles.
  • The church in Paraguay (as well as other parts of South America) deeply appreciates the support and prayers of SAMS supporters, as well as the strength derived from partnerships with churches in other regions of the world. There is an ongoing desire for mission partners to come and serve alongside them. Let us pray that the Lord strengthens and blesses our partnership with the church in South America. We also remember and lift up all those who are discerning or preparing to respond to God’s call for mission service.

May the Lord’s guidance and blessings be upon us as we engage in this mission journey together.




Pastor Donald Brooks – Paraguay

Please join us in prayer for the students of St. Andrew’s School. We earnestly desire that all the activities within the school community would lead them to a personal and profound encounter with Jesus. Pray that they may come to understand that Jesus Christ is their greatest need and that in Him, they will find everything their lives require. Let us also lift up the parents and staff members, that they may be instruments of God’s love and guidance in the lives of these students.

Additionally, we ask for your prayers for Iglesia Centro Cristiano Emanuel. May the church experience a revival and become a powerful influence in the city of Luque. Pray that God would grant wisdom and clarity regarding the vision for the church during this new season, which includes the presence of a new pastor and various challenges. May the congregation embrace this fresh direction with faith and enthusiasm.

Furthermore, we humbly request God’s blessings upon Saint Andrew’s Chapel. May the congregation continue to grow, both in terms of generosity and membership. Let it be a haven and a loving family for all those who are far from their homelands, offering support and belonging. Pray that God would raise up individuals gifted in preaching and leading for Sunday services, as well as skilled musicians to enhance worship.

Together, let us intercede for these specific needs, trusting in God’s faithfulness and provision. May His grace and guidance be evident in the lives of the students, the church, and the congregation of Saint Andrew’s Chapel.



Rev. Luke Pratt, Pen & Emily

Greetings from Santiago, Chile, as we gradually transition out of summer in the Southern Hemisphere! We hope this message finds you well. We are eagerly counting down the days until our return to Ireland, which is scheduled for August. As we prepare for this significant transition, we find ourselves with a multitude of tasks and a limited amount of time. However, we take comfort in knowing that the Lord is our helper, and we are steadily progressing. One of our current priorities is finding tenants for my mother-in-law’s house, as well as identifying interested individuals for the items we need to sell or give away in the coming months.

Following two wonderful weeks of summer holidays spent with our Chilean friends and family, we jumped right back into work. My focus has shifted primarily towards discipleship, as my role as youth leader has been successfully taken over by a talented and experienced sister in Christ. There is a palpable sense of excitement and momentum within our congregation now, especially after enduring a challenging year in the aftermath of the pandemic.

We had the privilege of hosting our mutual friend, Rev. Stephen McElhinney, who serves as the Director of SAMS Ireland. During his visit to Chile, I had the opportunity to accompany him as he toured the Anglican churches and church plants in the city of Concepción, located 500km southwest of Santiago. It was truly a privilege to witness the incredible work that the Lord is doing there, alongside such dedicated and enthusiastic brothers and sisters in Christ.

Thank you once again, and may God’s blessings be upon you all!

We would greatly appreciate your prayers for the following intentions:

The growth of the church here, the emergence of new leaders, and the discovery of innovative opportunities for evangelism.

My upcoming ordination, as I prepare to embark on this new chapter of ministry. Our preparations for our return to Ireland, including the logistics of settling back into Irish society

Wisdom and discernment as we choose a school for our daughter, Emily.

The strengthening of our Christian witness as individuals and as a family within the Irish community.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude for the unwavering support you have shown us throughout these past years, in all its various forms. The Lord has blessed us abundantly through your partnership, and we pray that He continues to shower His blessings upon each and every one of you.




Canon Ariel Irrazabel

I am Canon Ariel Irrazábal, a pastor in the Anglican Diocese of Argentina. For the past 13 years, I have been closely connected with The Mission to Seafarers. Initially, I served as a Port Chaplain in various parts of Brazil, and now I continue my service as a Chaplain in the Port of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Additionally, I hold the position of Honorary Rector at the Anglican Church of All Saints in Quilmes, and I am also collaborating with St. Mark Parish in Hurlingham – both vibrant communities in the metropolitan area of Buenos Aires.

My life journey is intertwined with that of Gabriela, my wife, and together, we embrace the role of a missionary couple. Our hearts burn with zeal for spreading the joyful message of Jesus. Gabriela, an accomplished theologian, is dedicated to faith education for adolescents and young adults. We are blessed with a 9-year-old son, Francisco.

Though I was born in Uruguay, Argentina has become my chosen home. This nation has graciously opened its doors to me, and within its borders, I have found a church family that has not only welcomed us but has also instilled in us the distinct ethos and essence of Anglican life.

Living in Argentina awakened a deep thirst within me for theological understanding. At the age of 47, I embarked on a transformative journey to pursue a doctorate in theology. I believe that I possess a unique and authentic perspective to contribute to theological knowledge – a core aspiration of doctoral study. While I may not envision a formal role in educational ministry, I do feel a resounding call to communicate, in a more authentic and precise manner, the divine workings amidst His people.

The essence of “first” theology is embodied in the lives of believers who encounter and cultivate a personal relationship with God. On the other hand, “second” theology seeks to articulate, convey, and illuminate God’s actions in ways that resonate with the people of our contemporary world and diverse cultures.

I extend my heartfelt gratitude to SAMS Ireland for their unwavering support throughout this arduous doctoral journey. Their assistance has been invaluable in enabling me to pursue this academic pursuit alongside my ongoing commitments. Your understanding and tireless dedication contribute significantly to advancing God’s mission in South America.

With profound appreciation,

Canon Ariel Irrazábal


Chris Wallis, Abundant Life Course, N. Argentina

As I reflect on the past few months, I am reminded of Joseph’s special cloak, which some interpret as being of many colours while others emphasise its long sleeves. Regardless of the exact details, what made it special was the deep affection his father had for him. In the midst of my contemplation, I cannot help but give thanks to my heavenly Father for the extraordinary variety of experiences He continues to bless me with in His immense generosity. My prayer is that I may become more generous in giving back as much as I receive.



Bermejo team in Bogota

Allow me to share just a few of these vibrant experiences:

  • Teaching Lectio Divina in the diocese’s course for future indigenous pastors has taught me invaluable lessons on reading the Bible and deepening my prayer life.
  • Facilitating SEAN’s Abundant Life course in the Wichí language to two church groups in the Rivadavia area of Salta province has revealed the deep longing of the Wichí people to know and understand God’s Word.
  • Teaching interpretation and translation to approximately 30 Wichí students who are preparing to become interpreters in the judicial system has opened my eyes to the incredible richness and beauty of language.
  • Working closely with a dedicated team of six Wichí men and women from the Bible Society, who are embarking on the translation of the New Testament into the Bermejo dialect of the Wichí language, has truly amazed me. Their genuine care and support for one another is truly inspiring.

Interpreters Workshop



As I reflect on these colourful areas of ministry, I feel a calling to make this Bible translation project my primary focus in the months and years ahead. I humbly ask for your prayers and support for this very special team as we embark on this significant undertaking.

Thank you for joining me in prayer and for being part of this mission. Together, let us embrace the diversity of God’s work and seek to make a lasting impact in the lives of the Wichí people.

In gratitude and with heartfelt blessings,

Chris Wallis

Pastor Esteban Alvarez, Antofagasta, Chile

Greetings in the name of the Lord! over a decade ago, I served as a volunteer with SAMS Ireland in Craigavon. Today, I am honoured to serve as the Pastor of an Anglican church situated in the beautiful port and mining city of Antofagasta, Chile, near the Atacama desert. Alongside my pastoral role, I also hold the esteemed position of being the national coordinator of the Langham Preaching Ministry in Chile, an organisation founded by the renowned Reverend John Stott.

In addition to my current responsibilities, I have been appointed by my diocesan bishop, Rev. Samuel Morrison, to act as a crucial link between our diocese of Valparaiso and SAMS Ireland. Together with SAMS Ireland we are actively seeking service opportunities both in Chile and Ireland. As part of this endeavours, we are encouraging young Chileans to serve in the Church in Ireland through the Fusion Program. Likewise, we are working on compiling a list of service opportunities in Chile for our Irish brothers and sisters, including short and long-term missions, church planting projects, ministerial apprenticeships, continuing education for clergy and laity, and social work initiatives. We warmly invite the churches in Ireland to join us in these endeavours by coming, praying, or offering financial support.

Despite our progress towards self-sustainability, there are still areas where we require assistance to advance and initiate new projects.

In light of these developments, we humbly request your prayers. Please pray that God may open doors in both directions, facilitating meaningful service opportunities. Additionally, we ask for prayers for the commitment of believers in Chile, as we navigate the gradual return to in-person gatherings amid the challenges posed by inflation and the aftermath of the pandemic. Many churches are facing financial struggles related to salaries and contributions for ongoing projects.

Lastly, we seek your prayers for the transitional phase our diocese is undergoing. Starting from August, our diocesan bishop will focus exclusively on bishop’s work, which presents both blessings and challenges. We are grateful for your unwavering support and prayers, and we hold the SAMS Ireland family close to our hearts. It was genuinely a privilege and a blessing to connect with you at FNL last February.

May God bless you abundantly.

Yours in Christ,

Rev. Esteban Alvarez


Ordination of Pastor Guillermo Diana

We rejoice with St. Paul’s Church in Concepcion, Paraguay, as they recently celebrated a significant milestone. After nine years of fervent prayer, the church’s longing for a new Pastor was answered. On June 4th, Guillermo Diana was officially installed as their new Pastor.

Guillermo’s journey to ministry has been deeply intertwined with St. Paul’s Church. Although he grew up in the nearby community of San Juan, it was within the walls of St. Paul’s that he found his faith and spiritual home. From an early age, Guillermo has carried a burning passion for sharing the gospel. His heartfelt desire is to witness people coming to know Jesus Christ as their Saviour and to witness the church thriving both in numbers and in the depth of their faith and service.

Guillermo is married to Rosa, and they are blessed with six children and two grandchildren. As they embark on this new chapter of leadership, we ask for your prayers of thanksgiving for Guillermo and Rosa. May the Lord anoint, protect, equip, and encourage them in their ministry. Pray that they will be granted wisdom, assistance, hope, faith, and love as they lead God’s people.

Furthermore, we ask for prayers of intercession for the church as a whole. May the light of Christ shine ever brighter through their collective witness. Pray that the church will continue to grow in strength, unity, and the transformative power of the gospel.

Together, let us lift up our voices in prayer, expressing gratitude for the past and seeking God’s guidance and blessings for the future.



Summer Daily Prayer for Mission 2023

Introducing a Summer Daily Prayer Diary for the Church in South America!

Exciting news! We’re glad to unveil our new “Summer Daily Prayer for Mission” designed to help your prayer and strengthen your continuing commitment to mission in South America. Experience a summer journey of prayer, focusing on mission themes inspired by Paul’s own prayers while in prison.

Embark on this prayerful adventure and discover  prayers of perseverance, unity, boldness, open doors, discipleship, empowerment, provision, healing, justice, and more. Each short daily theme is crafted to keep your prayers focused, impactful, and in line with the Anglican Church’s mission in South America.

Download the Summer Daily Prayer for Mission 2023 and join us in partnering with the church in South America through prayer. Let’s make a difference together!

St. Andrew’s School in Asuncion, Paraguay celebrates 60 years

SAMS Ireland has been able to assist with the placement of volunteers from Ireland to schools in South America.

For many years there has been a particular close working relationship with St. Andrew’s School (Colegio San Andrés) in Asuncion, Paraguay. Many people have  volunteered from several months to a year, some have even stayed for up to 2-3 years. This month of March celebrates 60 years since St. Andrew’s school was founded. A short video can be viewed below.


If you would like to enquire about volunteering in a school with a Christian ethos in South America, please contact the office.


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