I remember an adorable little 9-year-old girl with glasses sitting in an English lesson and giggling as the mission team taught her 5 years ago. I didn’t know her name. I thought she was cute and tried to get a Rephoto of her, but she was wiggling so much, the pictures all were blurry. A couple of years later, she shot her hand in the air at Bible club and said she’d asked Jesus to be her Savior. She has come to church and every activity possible since then. She’s grown into a faithful 14-year-old who loves God, and we sure know her name now: Paulinha or “Little Paula” as everyone calls her.
I also remember a cold spring Sunday in 2014. 8-year-old Joana had asked her Sunday School teacher about getting saved the week before. He’d explained everything to her and told her to think and pray about it. She had, and she wanted to get saved! She came out of the Sunday School room. She was bundled in her winter clothes and hat, and she and her teacher both had tears in their eyes. We all hugged Joana and rejoiced that she’d accepted Jesus as her Savior. Since then, Joana has grown into an 11-year-old young woman who is also faithful to church.
Take a moment to watch this video of the baptism
Both Joana and Paula asked to be baptized, so every Wednesday after school, I picked them up, drove them to a café, and we sat down with our Bibles and pastries. After months of discipleship and preparation, on October 9th, Joana and Paula were baptized! Each has one sibling who attends church. Otherwise, their families are completely unsaved and unchurched. But, both girls had dozens of family members and friends who came, saw the baptism, listened to the girls’ testimonies, and heard David preach the plan of salvation. It was a beautiful day — one that I will always remember.