Note: We first met Sister Alba during our Elijah Challenge Training Event in Brazil in April 2014 where nearly 1,000 leaders were trained.
Alba Valeria Reis Lopez
1st Seminar of Healing and Deliverance at New Canaan Baptist Church in Betim, Minas Gerais State (Igreja Batista Nova Canaa, Betim, MG, Brazil)
Based on The Elijah Challenge
Trainer: Alba Valeria Reis Lopez (Elijah Challenge Trainer in Brazil)
Date: August 8-10, 2014
Participants: 150 pastors and cell group leaders / guest pastors
This church had gone through a time of division, of pastors and members. Now it is a new beginning, with new leaders being trained to host the new believers Jesus will send. I found a very friendly and warm environment, with hurting people. Jesus took good care of them, first healing the leaders of their infirmities. They were very open and eager for the seminar. All of them were hugely blessed and they are all excited for our next encounter since they want me there again.
[Individual testimonies and photos of people who were healed will be posted shortly]
It is very blessed church with around 1,200 members (it used to be bigger but some of the members left after the other 2 pastors left). Pastor Francisco Carlos Lima Santos, who has been a pastor for more than 39 years, has become the Senior Pastor. He is a very experienced and God-centered man.
It is a well-structured church with a very nice, spacious facility along with two junior high schools. They support around seven missionaries in Brazil and other parts of the world, mainly in Africa. They also have two halfway homes and seven foster homes for children of all ages (between 0 and 17 years old).
New Canaan Baptist has another project in the north of Minas State, in the region of Janauba, which is called Quilombolas. A quilombo (Portuguese pronunciation: [kiˈlõbu]; from the Kimbundu word kilombo) is a Brazilian hinterland settlement founded by people of African origin including the Quilombolas, or Maroons. Most of the inhabitants of quilombos (called quilombolas) were escaped slaves and, in some cases, later these escaped African slaves would help provide shelter and homes to other minorities of marginalised Portuguese, Brazilian aboriginals, Jews and Arabs, and/or other non-black, non-slave Brazilians who experienced oppression during colonization. However, the documentation on runaway slave communities typically uses the term mocambo to describe the settlements. “Mocambo” is an Ambundu word that means “hideout”, and is typically much smaller than a quilombo. Quilombo was not used until the 1670s and then primarily in more southerly parts of Brazil.
New Canaan Baptist Church has already built a village with homes for these people and a 160-meter2 church building. There are missionaries from the church who live there to evangelize and pastor them. There is a project of building a small factory to produce gift boxes.
The church has 50 cell groups and 120 of them are being trained to start new cell groups next year. They all participated in the seminar.
Pastor Edilvan who invited me to teach the Seminar is the pastor of Nucleo Bairro Niteroi also in Betim, Minas Gerais, a congregation of New Canaan Baptist with 150 members. The congregation also has a day care center for poor children next to the church.