Videos about Living Stones

sábado, 27 de agosto de 2011


Gustavo is one of the children at Living Stones Cajueiro Claro. When he was little, his father was killed selling drugs. While he has many half brothers and sisters, he lives with his mother and her other son, Edivaldo (who also attends Living Stones). His mother is gone all day, cleaning other people’s homes to support her two children.

Their home is made of mud/clay, with sticks and a couple beams to support it. A tin roof lies on top, with a tarp protecting the sides. No bathroom, no sink, and electricity is from a wire attached to the street light; a dangerous but free way to have one light bulb illuminating the main room.

The main room is a queen size bed for the mother and bunk beds for the kids. There is barely enough room to get between them. There is a small hall where a couple of pieces of clothing are stacked, and a bucket of water with some dishes. No kitchen. No food. No clean water and you can bet wherever is found to use the restroom: no toilet paper.

Gustavo, 13 years old, grew up taking care of himself. He gained a bad reputation early on, and in a small community of 1000 people, that follows you everywhere. He lies through his teeth, and was basically rejected from the small group of boys in Cajueiro Claro. Gustavo always needed a story to tell—so if one was not readily available, he would make one up, or start trouble enough just to talk about it. Cussing up a storm, he was a problem from day one of Living Stones, and often had to be removed from the group. At school, his peers so rejected him he had to change to night school.
With time, and receiving daily love from the Living Stones workers, Gustavo began to need the attention of others less, and began to be able to cooperate with others. After a year, Flavio asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up, and he said a policeman or a pastor. Three weeks ago, Gustavo (and another student named Paulo) asked about how to become a Christian. Flavio prayed with both of the boys and they made a profession of faith.

This has begun a new phase for Gustavo. He now greets everyone with the traditional Brazilian Christian greeting of “Paz do Senhor.” The other boys are watching, and are quick to point out any misbehavior and say how he “left the religion.” All eyes are on these two boys as they, and their peers discover what it means to walk with Christ. There are many falls, but even more “getting back ups.”

Gustavo’s house, in all this rain, is falling apart—literally. The dirt foundation is wearing away and one wall is breaking apart from the rest. He is still working on overcoming his bad reputation in the community. He lacks daily clothes, food, and clean water, and often has to work instead of attending school (whenever work is available). How can we help? A simple house could be built for about $5,000USD. But besides money, daily love through the Living Stones is vital for this young man, as well as your prayers to overcome these tremendous struggles.

Dreams for Cajueiro Claro

In the coming months, here are some objectives for Living Stones Cajueiro Claro:
1.       Planting a garden, teaching the children this valuable skill and then eating our own produce
2.       Computer classes (four computers have been promised) for the children
3.       More volunteers from the church and community
4.       A special Children’s day celebration (October 12) at Word Of life
5.       A soup program for the community (donated by one of the local restaurants)
6.       A Kombe (VW bus) to provide regular transportation for people and food
7.       Visiting the homes of the children and providing for some of the urgent housing, clothing, and food needs

The most pressing need is for $400USD ($600R) a month to continue serving meals for the children. If you would like to help out, please donate at A table for 20-30 kids would also be great for social skills and manners, as currently the kids just sit wherever to eat.

Summer 2011

Quick review of Living Stones: it is the church planting outreach in Northeast Brazil in communities that are experiencing deep poverty. Throughout the week, needy children are invited to come and are taught basic life skills, about Jesus, and are given enough food to help them concentrate and be able to learn. On Sundays, their family is invited to church.
The original Living Stones project was in Paudalho, where in conjunction with the government, 150 children were being served. In 2010, the connection with the government ended due to corruption in the political system. The church has been working on re-grouping, as well as completing a construction project that would add four classrooms and two bathrooms (to the one current classroom and one functioning bathroom). They are hoping to reopen Living Stones at the end of September.
Last August the second Living Stones project began in Cajueiro Claro, a small community of 1,000 people located 4 kilometers (around 2 miles) off the main road. Flavio is heading up this project, as well as pastoring the church and any other jobs that need to be done (he has a blog—in Portuguese--at
At Cajueiro Claro, big things have been happening:
1.       Short term missions groups from the USA brought paint and helped paint the church a lovely bright yellow.

2.       Living Stones now offers lunch for the children! From money given at different times, Flavio invested in printing 50 t-shirts and selling them, yielding enough money to purchase a stove, table, and cupboards. A refrigerator was also donated. Flavio has learned to cook (and Rachel vows to learn and help as well) for 15-20 kids each day.

3.       With the t-shirt money, Flavio has also been able to turn one of the classrooms into a bedroom for him or other workers to stay in Cajueiro Claro for longer amounts of time.

4.       The motorcycle for Flavio (and Rachel and other volunteers to ride on the back of) has been purchased! It should arrive before September. You can be sure that pictures will be posted. This will end the 8 kilometer trek (up one mountain and down another) made daily, and give the Living Stones workers more time with the children each morning.
5.       Four people have been saved and disciple through the Cajueiro church, and hope to be baptized soon.

6.       Two children from the Living Stones project accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior.

Rachel Interrupts

I normally try to keep the blog in the third person, as it is more professional. But a quick interruption here:
I had a wonderful time back in the United States. You may, or may not have noticed an absence of posts on this blog. Every time I return to the United States, the Brazilian workers and I try to create a way to connect and keep up on information, it never seems to work out as planned. Perhaps next time. I returned to the US because my tourist visa expired, but God made it so much more. It was truly a blessing to my soul; full of opportunities to share about Brazil and to grow as an individual.
And now I am back. Ready to write in the third person again. Hence the sudden burst of blog activity.