Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! Hope you have all had a great time with family and friends, and especially remembering why we celebrate Christmas at all—Jesus Christ was born! I am so thankful for Him! Aren’t you?

Friday, December 16, 2005

Ponder this!

Here’s a quote to think about:
“If within us we find nothing over us, we succumb to what is around us.”
What, or better, Who do you have within you? What makes you tick? What is your purpose in life? I’m glad I have found out—you can too!
Why do we see those around us with no strong morals or values? Well, the quote explains it all…
Open the Bible! Read the book of John! It’s amazing!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Trial of Saddam

I was reading the news yesterday, and found it interesting to see what’s going on in the courtroom in Iraq where Saddam is being tried…then I read Proverbs 29:9 this morning…guess what it says… “If a wise man goes to court with a fool, the fool rages and scoffs, and there is no peace.” Is that not what is going on over there? Oh, the truths we discover in life…

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Becky and the Beach Ball

Howdy folks! Here's Becky with our little guy, she says it's no longer a bowling ball or a basketball, but a beach ball that she's carrying around! He's due January 18th, and we're very excited for his arrival! Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 25, 2005

Defending our Faith!

I’ve been doing some research on Jehovah’s Witnesses for my theology class, and some of you might find this interesting. It is one of the fastest growing cults in the world, so I believe we should know a bit about it and how to defend our position when talking to one of them. In fact, I am interviewing a J.W. this coming Monday on the deity of Christ (they don’t believe he was actually God), and I’ll be producing two brochures soon, one for Christians to know how to defend our position when they come knocking on our doors, and one brochure for you to hand to a J.W., challenging him/her to think for themselves and read the Bible. If you’re interested, let me know. Also, here’s a great website for apologetics (defending our faith) http://www.carm.org, it also includes plenty of information about all the other major cults today and their fallacies.
Know the Word and study it!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Thanksgiving is upon us!

Hello all! Thanksgiving Break is here this week! A friend of mine is going to help me (actually, he’ll be teaching me) redo our front porch—the roof is rotting through, and we’re also going to screen it in.
Our baby boy is still growing strong, Becky’s carrying a bowling ball, well, actually, a basketball, around. She’s anxious to have this baby soon…I mean, wouldn’t you be uncomfortable carrying a basketball around and your belly for this long too? I know that some people are actually used to that though… (
Classes are going well for me, Ben, I’m really enjoying them and feeling refreshed by what I’m learning. Our God is an amazing God, I will tell you that. This year I am thankful that His Word is like a hidden treasure, always finding new things we can cherish and learn from.
Keep in touch people! Email us sometime, a link is on the right side of this screen. Much love,
Ben & Becky.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Here's our boy sucking on his thumb already! See the profile of his face and chest? We're sooo excited!!! Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Ben with the baby!!! Naaaah, just kidding. It's a baby, but not OUR baby. This is Josiah Tannig Clermont, the two day old baby of Justin, the fella in the picture below this one! Ours isn't due until January! We're excited!!! Posted by Picasa

We Made It!

End of the 4 mile Mud Run! We made it!!! Ben's the one on the far left! (Ben, Art, Justin, Eli--all friends currently in Seminary at CIU). Posted by Picasa
Over and Under folks! Over and under! Posted by Picasa
That's Ben swimming in the muddy water! Ben did the 12th Annual Marine Corps sponsored Mud Run! 4 miles of obstacles and trails in the forest! Awesome! Posted by Picasa

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Who says adults can't have fun? Posted by Picasa

Never never want to grow up!

Who says you can't have fun as a grown-up? The fella that opens the fire hydrants three or four times a year to check chemical levels was opening valves in our neighborhood! I thought it was raining outside, but it was the fire hydrant! After talking to the city worker, the kids convinced me to join in the fun! It sure didn't take much to "convince" me! Always a kid, I'll tell ya...
Haven't you ever done it? It's even more fun when it's a hot day, like the day we had! What's one of the things you've done that's fun that "keeps you young"? Let us know! Post a comment at the bottom right of this paragraph.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Wise Proverb

"Do not wear yourself out to get rich; have the wisdom to show restraint". In other words, "Don't weary yourself trying to get rich. Why waste your time?"
Ever seen that one? That comes from Proverbs 23:4. Pretty useful advice, I'll tell ya! Listen to what comes after that: "...for riches can disappear as though they had the wings of a bird!"
God chooses to bless us in different ways at different times, why not depend on him instead of wearing ourselves out?!? Wow.

Monday, August 29, 2005

True Bacheller Tradition

Well, in keeping with true Bacheller tradition, we've started off our family with a BOY! Yep, it's true! I mean, did you expect otherwise? It's almost impossible to expect a girl, I mean, look at the odds in Ben's family! 5 boys in a row, then finally, a girl! Hope it doesn't take THAT long for us to have a girl! :-) Even so, we're excited, and hope you are too! This guy was moving all over the place during the ultrasound, I'm thinking he's going to be a strong-willed child! You never know...

Yep, both of us have jobs, and we're excited classes are starting up this Wednesday. I'll be taking Systematic Theology I, Gospels, & Foundations of Spiritual Development. Anxious to get started!

If you're passing through the area, in Columbia, SC, don't hesitate to give us a call or stop in for a quick visit! We'd love to see you!

Keep in touch,
Ben & Becky.
Here's looking at you! It's a BOY!!! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Our new home! It looks better now, we've actually unpacked all (almost all) the boxes! Posted by Picasa

Monday, August 22, 2005

In Columbia--@CIU

Howdy folks. Well, we've arrived and almost finished moving in to our new home here in SC! We're excited to have our own place, settle down (if that's possible with a kid on the way!) and enjoy life a bit. I'm (Ben) looking forward to classes at the seminary, and Becky's got a job she's been waiting and praying for. She's already started orientation at the hospital to work on an OB floor! No more medical/surgical/oncology for a while! She'll be learning all about what goes on with the moms and babies (not to mention, she'll be taking care of them and directing/teaching them), since it's a post-partum floor she's going to be on.
For myself, I'll be taking three classes (Principles of Spiritual Development, Gospels, and Systematic Theology I) and working part-time. Not sure WHERE that work's going to come from yet, but it'll come...

If you want to get ahold of us, our number is (803)233-3608, and you are more than welcome to give us a buzz. We'll even call you right back so WE can pay the phone bill, not you. :-)

Monday, August 15, 2005

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

In Transition`

Howdy folks! Becky and I are in Florida as I type this, preparing to pack up our stuff and move to South Carolina! We've enjoyed the hospitality of friends here at our church and at ECHO, hosting us during this time of transition. A great surprise this past Sunday was that our Sunday school here in Fort Myers threw us a baby shower party/going away party! We enjoyed spending some more time with them before setting off again on this new adventure. Nevertheless, we're excited to finally get "home", to our own place in Columbia, SC.
During our time back to the States, we've been to Chicago, then western New York state, then Chicago again, and then Florida now, and soon in SC. As we leave on Thursday, please pray for safe travels. God has protected us up to now, and we're thankful for that. We just found out that our licences had been suspended, b/c of no insurance on the car while overseas, which meant I couldn't drive, and we also couldn't get insurance on our car for only a few days in FL...etc, beaurocracy, I'll tell ya! Anyhow, the Lord worked all that out and we're legal now to drive. Whew! Thought I'd have to drive that rental truck illegally! (just joking).
And for those of you wondering, Becky's now four and a half months along in the pregnancy, and everything seems to be going well, thank the Lord!
Anyhow, keep in touch! We hope to see many of you in the near future!
In Christ, Ben & Becky Bacheller.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Salt & Light

Becky and I flew back to the States last night, and it was quite eventful. But what I want to tell you about is one unique situation we found ourselves in.
On one of the domestic flights we were on within Brazil, en route to São Paulo, we met an American lady that had been to Brazil to visit this certain "religious" man who was performing healings. Now, as many American people will understand, when you fly, usually you want to keep to yourself and take a quick nap, read a book, etc. Nevertheless, this lady we met, whose name I can't remember now, wanted to chat. And if you're reading this maam (sorry I forgot your name), please forgive me for my attitude at first, but read on. So you see, this lady kept asking questions, as well as sharing her views on life, etc. She's looking for the Truth, for answers...and what got me thinking throughout today was that so many times we are selfish, we want to keep to ourselves, live our individualistic lives, and just be left alone. But is that what we are supposed to do as Christians? As Christ followers?? No!! Christ told us to be salt and light, did He not? What was salt for? Before the invention of refrigeration, salt was used to prevent the decay of meat, so if we're supposed to be meat, then we should be fighting to prevent the decay of our society! Our culture! And if we're light, we should be shining Jesus wherever we go! I felt so stupid for my attitude when this lady first started talking to me...I just wanted to rest. But what more important thing could one be doing then to try to help lead someone closer to the Truth! That is what we are supposed to do folks, as followers of Christ! Regardless of your job, career, family situation, or financial situation. To lead others to the joy we have in Him and the salvation from eternal death that He provides! So although this lady and I had a few differences in opinion on even the most basic theology (Heaven vs. Hell, a good God with evil in the world), I hope and pray that she's closer to finding the Lord in her life. We need to challenge others to seek the Truth. Christ said that He is "the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." There is no other way. It's difficult for the average American to understand that he/she needs God, and that there's only ONE way. In a pluralistic society, that's a difficult argument to maintain. But, thankfully, it is true...and only by the grace of God.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Lost pictures!!!

Well, well! When we got back from our trip to the northeast of Brazil, we discovered that the hard drive (computer storage) of the computer we used had "crashed", basically we lost everything on it. We had all our hundreds of pictures stored on it, etc., and lost it. Thankfully, we found someone in a larger city 40 minutes from here who was able to reccuperate all the data for us, and we'll get the CD's tomorrow in the mail. It cost us $300 to get this data...but it would probably be more in the US.
All in all, it was a pretty close call for leaving in two days! Unfortunately, it's not much time to print pictures off to give away or make gifts with. We're just thankful we could get all those pictures back--memories are SO important, aren't they?

Although we're leaving in two days, it doesn't feel like it at all. Have you ever been in a situation like that? It just doesn't hit until you finally settle down, sometimes, weeks or months later when you finally get back into your "old" or "normal" routine. Well, that's us too. We'll miss all the people here, the kids at the orphanage, the memories made...but we'll cherish the memories that remain, that's for sure. Maybe someday you can ask us...be glad to chat. Anyhow...better go now.
Keep in touch folks,
In Christ, Ben & Becky.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Where we'll be in the next couple of weeks:

Howdy folks! If you're reading this site, wondering just where we are in the world today, well this is the right place. Here's where we'll be in the next few weeks, and how to reach us.

On Friday, July 22nd, we'll be flying out of Brazil to Chicago. We'll be in Chicago from the 23rd through the 26th, flying out to New York State on that Tuesday, the 26th. We'll be seeing supporters and family while in NY, then fly back to Chicago for debriefing. We'll be in Chicago again from the 2nd to the 6th of August, when we'll be flying down to Miami (still need a ride though) on our way to Fort Myers on the Gulf side of Florida (hoping there'll be no hurricanes in store for when we're there though). We'll stay in Fort Myers for a few days, from the 6th through the 11th, when we pack up a rental truck and move to Columbia, SC. The best way to reach us will be by email (bbbacheller@yahoo.com), since we don't have cell phones currently. In NY you can reach us at (716) 557-2153. Once we are moved in to SC, we'll email our phone number out to you. We'll be sharing stories and pictures with those who are interested while we're in western NY and Chicago, as well as by email if you're interested. Just let us know.

As our time winds down here, pray for me, Ben, I've got an earache that's bothering me, and that everything will go smoothly. Can't wait to see you all wherever you are! Thanks for your prayers,
Ben & Becky.

Monday, July 11, 2005

"Free-ranging-goat" in interior of Para�ba, notice the two right legs tied and the long stick tied to the neck--that would slow anything down! Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 08, 2005

Nordeste (northeast)

We got back from northeast Brazil safely, and it was an adventure for me (Ben), since I stayed a bit longer to get to know the interior of the state of Paraíba. The homes were simple, some without a cement floor, and the walls are made from mud and sticks, kind of like a plaster or adobe. The people are very welcoming and friendly once they know you're not a threat to them. They are suspicious of outsiders, but if they accept you, it's as if you're part of their family. That is how I felt during my visit-as part of the community-I wasn't stared at, and I enjoyed the people. One night I sat for a couple hours just chatting with the neigbors. They ranged from the ages of 70, to a four year old on my lap. We sat on simple benches or "home-made chairs" for the evening, just chatting away while the mosquitoes buzzed around us freely. It really WAS enjoyable for me because I got to live like they do for a few days. Eat what they eat (rice and beans with a dry flour-like mixture made from cassava roots), sleep like they do (in a hammock--very comfortable--saves on $ too!) All in all, I saw the need that exists there. I taught an agricultural cooperative some things they could do to improve their crop production, interacted with them, and also hooked them up with ECHO (www.echonet.org) for materials to assist them. Who knows where God may lead us (Ben & Becky) in the future? So many needs...so few people willing to serve. We all can help in so many ways, some by going overseas, some by giving, but all of us by praying. What can YOU do?

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Heading north

Tomorrow morning we head up north for a family vacation...all the Bacheller brothers and wives are here now, so we'll all be gone until the 30th of June. However, I'll be gone (Ben) until the 9th, visiting a new church plant and the pastor, getting to know the work there, as well as teaching a few seminars on agriculture appropriate to the semi-arid climate I'll be visiting up there. Pray that everything goes well, for health and for safety. Pray that I'll know what to teach, since the folks left it wide open for me. I'll be back on July 9th, then we'll be heading back to the States on the 22nd to visit some of you folks in NY. Count on seeing us toward the end of July! Thanks for your prayers everyone!

Friday, June 17, 2005


Well, today I spent the morning at the orphanage hanging out with the teen guys, then in the garden ("horta" in Portuguese) cleaning up a bit. There's a bit of bad news too...many of the young kids at the orphanage are breaking out with chicken pox, which means Becky can't hang out there and care for the kids, since it could cause serious birth defects to the baby in womb. So, unfortunately, she's gotta stay away for at least two weeks...let the chicken pox swipe through the whole orphanage first...oh well, now to find other things to keep busy.

Oh, I stayed there for lunch today. Guess what we ate? Well, rice, beans, chicken (necks), potato/carrot salad, and some kind of greens with vinegar/lemon. Yes, you read that correctly, chicken NECKS! Wow...I skipped since I was getting protein in the beans! :-) What would you do? I'd try it first, which I HAVE done I'll let you know, and I didn't like the vertebrae that you have to pick out and spit out as you're eating that with a mouthfull of rice & beans! Fun, fun!!

This afternoon I (Ben) taught English (more like helped with homework) at an after-school program for kids from the public state school here. No pictures yet, but maybe in the future. Anyhow, I'll get going. Keep in touch!
Ben (& Becky).

Thursday, June 16, 2005

At the University! The largest university of Latin America in contiguous land! It was huge! And beautiful architecture from the early 1900's. Posted by Hello
Taking a tour of the headquarters of the Brazilian Department of Agriculture and Research. Posted by Hello
Isn't she beautiful!?? Posted by Hello
Quick visit to the beach! Posted by Hello
Day-care center--planting lettuce with the children! Posted by Hello

Back from Rio!

Dear Friends and Family,
We arrived safely back in Anápolis after an exciting
week in Rio. Thank you for all your prayers regarding
our trip. During our time in Rio (actually Seropédica,
a small college town 45 minutes out of the city) Ben
and I were able to visit the Federal University of
Rural Rio de Janeiro which focuses on agriculture and
environmental science. We also participated in
Seropédica’s environmental emphasis week which
included tours of neighboring national forests and
mini-courses in caring for the environment. All these
were for the community. Ben also had the opportunity
to teach an Ecology class at the university about the
environment and geography of the United States. We
were privileged to stay with Dr. Carlos Domingos
(director of the Environmental Science department at
the university) and his wife Mara. They were very
hospitable towards us and did all they could to make
our stay comfortable (they even gave us their
room—very Brazilian). They spoke Portuguese with a
different accent however, which was hard for me and
made for some frustrating moments not being able to
understand what was going on. I think God was trying
to teach me flexibility this past week as well as
patience with myself and my learning level (note from
Ben: She did VERY WELL!). Learning a new language is a
daily struggle, some days I feel good about all I
know, other days I feel like I know so little. Ben
also had the opportunity to help Carlos teach a basic
agriculture course to missions students at a nearby
seminary. Overall, the week gave Ben a wonderful
opportunity to see ways to apply his knowledge of
biology as well as missions.
Next week we leave with the entire Bacheller clan (all
six kids and wives) for the city of João Pessoa in
northeastern Brazil for a family reunion on the beach.
Ben and I were originally planning to stay up north
for the month of July and visit a small village in the
semi-arid region of Brazil. However, since morning
sickness is still an issue for me we have decided that
I will return with the rest of the family and Ben will
stay for about a week and a half. We have been in
contact with a pastor in this village and he informed
Ben that the officials in the town want Ben to teach
classes in agriculture and soil management while he is
there. Ben is very excited to put some of his training
into use.
Here are some specific prayer requests to keep in
-Safe travels up north and back with our family;
-Wisdom for Ben to know what to teach to the community
members of the town in northeastern Brazil;
-Rest in the midst of so much going on;
-Safety & health for all three of us;
-Endurance to finish strong;
-That God will use us despite us;

We pray for you as well, please keep in touch, and
thanks for all your support & encouragement!
Becky & Ben Bacheller.

Attached you'll find a picture of us with the couple
that housed us in Rio as well as the children at a
daycare center planting lettuce during the Emphasis on
the Environment Week.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Leaving for Rio

Hey folks. Just wanted to ask you to pray for us as we
head off to Rio today. We'll take a bus to Brasília
from here (2 1/2 hours), then get on a plane to fly
down & over there for a week. We're excited to meet
some new people and see the work they're doing down
Until later!
Ben & Becky.

Friday, June 03, 2005


We had an ultrasound done just the other day, and we could see the blood pumping, or the heart beating, whatever you wanna call it! How neat to see a life beginning, and so small and precious! The baby is currently a little over 5 mm long! Imagine that! The size of a bean! Woohoo!!
With joy,
Ben & Becky.

Becky's Birthday Today! Last birthday without kids! Better enjoy it! :-)

Monday, May 30, 2005

Going to Rio!

Well hello there again folks! Once again, Becky and I
felt like we should email to keep in touch. We want to
share our excitement with you all! For some of you
this paragraph will be "old news", so just skip ahead
to the next paragraph. As of last week, Becky and I
found out that for sure, 100% definite, no joking,
totally seriously, that we are pregnant! She's 6 weeks
now, and the baby's due January 21st, 2006! Please
pray with us and for us for a safe, healthy pregnancy,
and delivery when the time comes.

Also, coming up in June, from the 6th to the 13th,
Becky and I will be going to Rio de Janeiro. We were
invited by a Christian professor at one of the top
agricultural/ecological schools in Brazil. During the
one week we spend there, we will be making contacts
for the future and trying to serve however possible. I
have been asked, believe it or not, to "preach" (more
like speak) that Sunday, as a layperson. I'm asking
God for the courage and wisdom to know what to say.
The church has about 200 to 300 members. This
professor has also asked me to possibly teach his
ecology course for the day that I'm there with him at
the university. I feel humbled and honored, wondering
if I'll know what to do! :-) However, what I am really
looking forward to is helping him (Dr. Carlos Eduardo)
teach an agriculture training course to missionaries
on Wednesday and Saturday. This is all exciting for
me, but also a little nerve wracking as well! Pray
that all goes fine, and that both Becky and I will
have the strength to step up to the challenges before
us. Thankfully my vertigo is almost completely gone
and I'm feeling more like myself.

However, Becky has been feeling "morning sickness"
lately, so we ask that you pray for this to pass ASAP.
It's amazing to think that during this 6th week, the
baby's facial features and hands & feet are already
forming. Psalm 139 says that he knows us even before
we were conceived! So He's watching out for this
little one already, wouldn't you say? Just as He
watches over us and has a plan in our lives and in
your life.

We're also in the process of figuring out our last
month here in Brazil (July). A pregnancy can change a
few things... Pray for us that we'll be able to decide
where to go while in the northeast of Brazil and how
long to stay in that region. It is likely that Becky
will not spend much time there due to the rough living
conditions, while I might spend a week or so visiting.

We also want to thank each of you who continues to
support us in the ways you have--our needs here in
Brazil have been more than met--Thank you so much for
encouraging us and praying for us! For more regular
updates, you can look us up on our website:

Let us know of any specific prayer requests you might
have as well so we might better know how to pray for
you. We hope you have a great week!

Love and Prayers, Ben and Becky

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Surprise Inside!


Hey folks! Great news! As of yesterday, we know for 100% sure, no joking, completely seriously, that we are pregnant! Becky was at 5 weeks just yesteray, and by golly, are we excited!!!
The due date is January 21st, of course, give or take a bit.
Please pray with us for a healthy, safe pregnancy all the way to the end.
We are glad that we can make Becky's parents and Ben's parents grandparents for the first time, and we think they are too! :-)
Please keep us in your prayers. Thanks!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005


Well, we've already reserved our rental truck & car towing accessory (man, those things are expensive to rent!!!) for our move from Fort Myers, FL to Columbia, SC on or around the 11th of August. I think that'll be a Thursday, can't remember. Anyhow, we're looking forward to the move into our new place, just simple little home for us; it'll be home for the next couple of years as I pursue my Masters of Intercultural Studies at Columbia International University. It will probably take three years we're thinking. After that, who knows what's next!? One thing is sure, if the Lord leads us overseas, we're going! Our time in Brazil has been great so far, showing us where we could serve and where we think we shouldn't. :-)

On another note, I'm feeling a bit better today from the vertigo I caught (makes you dizzy and lose your balance, along with nausea feelings). I'm going to go check on the garden, see how it's coming. It'll be the most walking I've done in almost two weeks! Write more later!

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

There's always a Cultural Lesson

Happy Belated Mother's Day, we pray you had a joyful day
celebrating the special moms in your life. This Mother's
Day brought for us another cultural lesson and a reminder
that we are constantly learning more about Brazil (even
with Ben having grown up here!). At around one o-clock in
the morning on Mother's Day we were awakened by people
blaring music outside our window. Ben went outside to
complain and told the group to quiet down so people could
sleep. However, Ben soon found out that the group was made
up of seminary students simply trying to honor all the
mothers by serenading them on Mother's Day. From our
perspective the students were being rude, yet that was not
how they or the Brazilian mothers saw it. We were
reminded again the need to be culturally sensitive and not
judge others based on our own perspective. Ben and I are
thankful that our time in Brazil not only includes serving
but learning as well.

Things are going well at the orphanage. The garden is coming
along and thanks to the fence some of the boys built with
Ben the sheep are being kept at bay. I am having a wonderful
time teaching crotchet to the oldest girls and have even
found some patterns in Portuguese. It's encouraging to see
their excitement and the beautiful things they are making.
My Portuguese is coming along and each day it seems like I
can understand a little bit more. I love reading Bible
stories in Portuguese to the kids (and the kids seems to love
it too because there is always a rush to see who gets to sit
on my lap).
Here are a few specific prayer requests:
-Ben is starting to feel dizzy like when he had vertigo
several months ago (after the hurricanes).
Pray that I will know how to help him and that we can find
the right doctor here.
-Kathy (Ben's mom) is in the States for a few days. Pray that
we will be able to help Joy(Ben's little sister)not be so
"mom-sick" while Kathy is away.
-Please also pray that our relationships with the kids at
the orphanage will allow for opportunities to share about
the Lord.

We are very grateful for your thoughts and prayers.

Love, Becky (& Ben)

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Teens from orphanage at Judo

This past weekend Becky and I went to the local university gym where a State Judo competition was being held. We went to watch a few of the teen guys from the orphanage compete. One of the kids actually got gold in one division, and silver in the next. It was neat to spend time w/ them, supporting them, since there's no parents to come watch and support them. Even so, I don't think I have the patience that a teenager's father would have (yet), because I got tired after a few hours and had to come home and get some rest. It can drain you a lot, especially when it's in another language! Anyhow, that was Saturday, and today, Wednesday, I give a short Bible study to these same teenager guys at the orphange, at 8pm our time, 7pm Eastern St. Time, while Becky hangs out with the teen girls, talking and teaching them how to crochêt.
Please pray that God will work in these kids' lives, bringing them to Him, and that we'll be sensitive in knowing how we can help.
Ben & Becky.

Orphanage teens at Judo competition on Saturday, April 30th, 2005

Monday, April 25, 2005

Tire gardens with 5th grade

This morning I (Ben) went to Joy's school (my 10 year old sister) and taught over 60 kids how to make tire gardens. Goodness, those 10 & 11 year olds can be noisy! Nonetheless, we were able to plant strawberry plants in these tires, and the kids are supposed to water them daily before school (7.20AM!), and keep the weeds out as well. It's been neat to be involved in different aspects and areas in the community here. It's been exciting and challenging, but fulfilling too. We'll attach pictures as soon as we have some uploaded.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

More babies at the orphanage

Hello folks! Well, there are more and more babies at the orphanage! It's neat, yes, but not necessarily good, since some parents are not able to care for them, so they then end up at the orphanage. At least it's a better place for them than with their drunk dads and prostitute moms. At least there's a chance for them to have a better life here at the orphanage.

It was interesting for me (Ben) to find that out of the 17 teenage boys I've started a short Bible commentary/study for (in Proverbs), that only 4 or so called themselves "Christians". Wow. Here we are at a "Christian orphanage", and only 4 out of 17 teen boys are Christians. Makes you realize what an impact you can have on these kids. On the other hand, it makes you realize that you can't do this on your own. God's the one Who blesses the work, not men.

Becky's been helping more regularly now with the newborns and infants, as well as staying busy with Portuguese. The teen girls at the orphanage are really getting into crochêting and it has been a great way for Becky to feel like she can make a difference even without knowing the language very well. One girl in particular, Jaqueline (she is 14 years old and has a 2 year old son by her step-father) crochêts all the time now and when she finishes with her yarn (enough to make 2 small carpets) she takes her carpets apart and starts all over again just to have something to pass the time. Becky has found some crochêt patterns in Portuguese and the girls are making some beautiful things.

I've been (Ben) weeding in the garden, spending time with the boys, hangin' out and playing with them, as well as doing a Wednesday night Bible Study with them. There is not a single person doing any kind of spiritual formation with these kids on a regular basis. The lady that used to be here (for 9 years or so) just left in January. There's a lot of help that's needed in "manpower", if you know what I mean. They need more people willing to teach Scripture to these kids, not necessarily $$$.

It's been neat to see how relationships are developing between us and the kids as time goes by. I have a feeling we're gonna miss all these kids when we leave here!
Well, we'll stop here for now. Keep in touch with us!
Ben & Becky.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

April 12th

Hello there again! Sorry it's been so long since we've written you. We've got much to write, but we won't make it as long as it could be. :-) First of all, we want to thank you for your support and encouragement toward us while here in Brazil. Since we last wrote, there have been many exciting things that we've been able to be a part of. First of all, Easter was great! We were priveleged to share the holiday weekend with the kids at the orphanage. Kids from a church in the US committed to doing some community service to raise money for the orphanage. All the money they raised ($400) they sent to the orphanage for the kids here to have a celebration like no other! Saturday night there was an Easter celebration with the older teens doing a drama of "The Last Supper", and on Sunday there was a big Brazilian style barbecue (aka "Churrasco") accompanied by rice, beans, cassava root, and tomato salad. There was plenty of meat left over for the rest of the week. One thing that means a lot to kids here in Brazil during Easter is getting an Easter Egg, made of chocolate. Each child received two chocolate eggs, and no one felt left out. We have many pictures of kids smiling, having a blast those two days! (see attached pictures) Thanks to those young kids somewhere in the US who gave of their time and effort to provide for those who don't have as we do in America.
On another note, Becky and I were able to spend a quick weekend at a local national park with my parents and 10-year old sister. There were beautiful bluffs and waterfalls, reminding me a bit of Wyoming and Utah--except here it was much more lush and green. We went on an 11km hike for the day, going through native vegetation and old crystal mines from the early 1900's, to reach our destinations: waterfalls and large pools of water we could swim and relax in.
At the orphanage, the garden continues to grow! We have some lettuce, onions, parsley, beans, and carrots planted--things the cooks really want in the kitchen when preparing meals for the kids. It's been a lot of work--some of you have gardens of your own, you know! The weeds here are like any other--they just keep growing and growing!
Becky's Portuguese is getting better and better! (taking lessons twice a week and studying a lot more on her own). She's now reading books to the younger children, and once in a while one of the girls will correct only a word or two out of the whole book! She's also started teaching the teenage girls how to crochet! Hopefully this will be a skill that they can take with them when they leave the orphanage at 18 years of age. It's a great opportunity for Becky to interact with them, in Portuguese of course, and build relationships.

This week hopefully we'll have something figured out regarding how to spend some more time with the older kids: the teenagers. The boys especially at the orphanage have few if any male role models they can look up to. I wonder if I might have a part in helping fill that emptiness in their lives. Only time will tell.

An unexpected blessing has surprised us since we got to Brazil! A new Brazilian missionary sending agency has been founded recently on the outskirts of the city we live in, and they have just recently bought some land with a large house, pool, and fruit tree orchard. This has been called the "Oasis Center". It is going to serve as a place for missionary couples and their families to come to for some R&R, along with some counseling and debriefing if needed. I'm excited about this because for the last couple of weeks I have been able to take charge of cleaning the orchard up along with a Brazilian pastor (Eliezér is his name). Furthermore, because of extra funds you've sent for our trip here to Brazil, we have been able to buy the necessary tools for the maintenance and care of the land, which we have donated to the Brazilian mission agency.

It brings great joy in knowing that we are really helping those in need here in Brazil, but even more joy in knowing that you all are the backbone of our work here. Because of you, lives are being touched, and we thank you for that! When you think of us, here are some prayer requests we send to you:

-How to reach out to the teens at the orphanage,

-Ben as a role model/friend to the guys;

-Becky's Portuguese to continue improving;

-Praise that we can help this Brazilian mission agency getting started;

-Pray that we'll continue to develop friendships with Brazilians here;

-Pray for continued guidance in discerning long-term possibilities here in Brazil for us;

We look forward to hearing from all or any of you at some point or another. Also, if you'd prefer not receive this regular email update from us, you can email us back and let us know, we won't mind at all taking you off our list. Our phone # (an in-country call for those in the U.S., is 630.614.4554 Give us a buzz sometime! We're one hour ahead of Eastern Standard Time.

Serving the Poor in Brazil, Ben & Becky Bacheller.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

March 14th

Hi from Brazil! It’s hard to believe that we have been here almost two weeks! God has taught us so much already! My wisdom teeth extraction went well and despite huge chipmunk cheeks I’m feeling much better. This past week we started helping in the orphanage with a group of college students who were on a spring break missions trip. We painted the main meeting room (the cafeteria) of the orphanage with palm trees and bright colors. It was lots of work, but tons of fun. I also started helping in the nursery. It is hard not to cry seeing the hard cement floor the toddlers crawl on with one or two broken toys to share amongst them all. The children are well cared for in regards to food and housing but lack the love and nurture needed for optimum growth. The babies are only held when being fed so they do not learn to cry for human touch or affection. One baby in particular, Marcos, has captured my heart already. He is 16 months old and has AIDS. When Ben and I first visited Brazil over a year ago Marcos had just been brought to the orphanage. Despite his illness and petite size God has given Marcos an extra dose of personality: when he smiles and blows kisses you cannot help but melt. I pray that during our time here we will be able to show God’s love to children like Marcos, children longing for a hug, a word of encouragement and a smile.

Ben has already started preparing a garden with the kids and has reconnected with Aníbol, the boys’ dorm supervisor who grew up in the orphanage himself. Sometimes Ben and I are overwhelmed with the many things we could do to help, but we are only two people. The director of the orphanage has specifically asked us to start a Bible study since the children are lacking spiritual leadership and guidance. Please pray that we can think of a fun way to teach God’s word, yet in a way I can help with my limited Portuguese (which is slowly getting better).

<>I’ll finish my note with two cultural observations from last night at church. The first is regarding church in Brazil. The service here usually starts at 7 PM and goes until around 9 PM. Visitors should always be ready to give their testimony or pray in church. However, Ben was still surprised to be called upon at the end of the service to pray in front of about 200 people—no, not in English, but Portuguese. He did fine, but then again, I don’t know enough Portuguese to understand what he said.

The second cultural lesson came after the service when some of the women came up to greet me (Becky), touching cheeks and blowing kisses in the air—the traditional Brazilian greeting among women. The only problem was my very sensitive “chipmunk cheeks”—a painful way to learn how to say hi.

Each day Ben and I are reminded how blessed we are to be in Brazil, to hold babies like Marcos, plant gardens, make friends and learn cultural and spiritual lessons. Thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers.

Love and God Bless,

Becky and Ben

Friday, March 04, 2005

March 4th in Brazil

Hello folks! Just wanted to send an update to you all and let you know that we’ve arrived safely in Brazil!

We left Miami March 1st and arrived “home”, where we’ll be staying for the next 4 months, Anápolis, around 7pm on the 2nd of March. We had an uneventful trip here, besides the 3 hour delayed flight out of Miami (very Brazilian!).

Becky and I have been trying to catch up on our sleep and “de-stress” a bit from the weeks leading up to our trip here to Brazil. We’ve already been able to get settled in our place, do some groceries, and even get to know some of the local folks who are either students or professors at the seminary where we’re living with my parents.

Beginning Monday we’ll already be getting involved in the orphanage across the street from us. A group of college students from the US are arriving here tomorrow (Saturday) and will be doing a few work projects at the orphanage, such as painting their whole cafeteria with a fresh layer of paint. Becky will be helping and I’ll be translating most of the time probably.

Today has been an exciting day for me, Ben. Why? Because I talked with Rev. Esli, a retired professor here at the seminary who in his free time has grown many fruit trees and other plants that do well in this area of Brazil (picture attached). He also has a good knowledge of who and what else is available in this area regarding small-scale agriculture. His dream has always been to have some basic farming or small scale agriculture program implemented within the seminary here. This would allow these adult seminary students to take this knowledge with them wherever they went, whether within Brazil to a more rural area, to the city, or to another country. This is exciting for me (Ben) to see, and to know that there are many opportunities for us here within a span of only 5 months.

Becky is tackling Portuguese head-on, spending time every day studying it, as well as trying to speak it with Brazilians that come to visit. We haven’t set up actual classes with a private tutor/teacher yet, but that will come. First, she will be taking out all four of her wisdom teeth on Wednesday next week. Pray for her as she goes “under the knife” Wednesday morning and that she heals up quickly. She’s very excited to get started helping at the orphanage, where last week 1 month-old triplets were just dropped off. Pray for these babies’ health as well.

We thank you for your encouragement, support, and prayers. We’re excited to be here, and can’t wait to send more news! Pass this along to others if you wish.

We have a US phone number here in Brazil (630-614-4554), believe it or not, that you can call if you just HAVE to speak to us. :-) It is a Chicago area phone number, so it’ll only be local or long distance for you in the US, and we can receive and make phone calls to you as well.

We hope all is well with you and your family,

Serving the poor in Brazil,

Ben & Becky Bacheller.