By Jayna Richardson
FamilyLife Global recently had the opportunity to participate in a large gathering of Cru staff and volunteers from throughout Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) at Agora 2018 in Brazil. Nearly 1,500 people attended, which presented a huge opportunity for introducing FamilyLife strategies and resources to Christian leaders in several countries.
Attendees at Agora (which means “now” in Portuguese) saw the Like Arrows movie trailer and heard about the launch of FamilyLife’s Art of Parenting™ in Spanish. FamilyLife presented four breakout sessions attended by 320 people and made important connections.
Layo Leiva, the Area Director for Cru LAC, had asked FamilyLife to send a team to Agora because Cru has identified “family” as a primary target audience. Because everyone belongs to a family, ministering to the family is a way to reach every segment of society. He and Armando Tamayo, the Cru LAC coordinator for FamilyLife, hope that Cru national directors throughout the continent will make FamilyLife a central part of their strategy and toolbox.
During one of the breakout sessions, Bianca Morsen, who serves with FamilyLife in Suriname alongside her husband Armand, shared her testimony. When her parents divorced, her world and dreams for the future were shattered. When she received Christ, everything changed. Her own painful experience has been a door that opens opportunities to offer redemption and restoration to other families. She emphasized the power of blending a FamilyLife ministry with other ministry strategies.
Guillermo and Ana Baños of Guatemala gave their testimony of how HomeBuilders® studies helped them overcome difficult issues three years into their marriage, and they gave an overview of the dynamics of a HomeBuilders small group.
FamilyLife also set up an information booth to answer questions throughout the conference and a booth to display FamilyLife books and DVDs.
The attendees were left with this challenge: “Families are one of the mountains that need to be reached in the city. The family is under attack from all sides. We need to raise up people who will stand in the gap. We hope you will be a part of that.”
The response to FamilyLife’s presentations at Agora has been encouraging. Cru is asking FamilyLife Global for three regional trainings in LAC, specifically for Cru staff and volunteers. We pray that God will use hundreds of ministry workers and laypeople in mighty ways to reach families throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.