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Faith in the Favelas

The Gospel Changes Lives Through Summer Camp

Each year, during the Brazilian summer months of January and February, Vinde Meninos hosts camps for children and teenagers living in extreme poverty. These camps give many children an opportunity to have a week of fun, see the love of Christ through camp staff, and hear the Gospel. Recently, ten teenagers made the long road trip from Marilia to Atibaia to participate in this week of summer camp at the Vinde Meninos Outreach Center. One of them was 17-year-old Gleyson.

A 12th grader at the public high school, Gleyson loves to play soccer, volleyball, and ping pong. He lives with his mom, grandmother, and five brothers, in a favela, or poverty-stricken area of town. Most often, such slum areas are controlled by drug dealers and criminals. Children and teens who grow up in favelas have little hope of ever escaping these desperate ways of living.

At the end of the week, Gleyson shared his experience: "I enjoyed everything so much. The worship time, the Bible studies, devotionals with my counselor and roommates, the games, soccer, and swimming. But the most special time for me was the service on the last night of camp. At that moment, God touched my heart, and it was something that I had never felt before in my life. At the end of the service, I made the decision to trust Christ and give my life to Him!"

We are so thankful Gleyson heard the Good News of the Gospel at youth camp and decided to follow Jesus!


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