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A Work in Progress
Bill and Susan are both from Southern California. Bill was saved December 12, 1963. He is from a non-Christian home. Some of his family have since been saved. Susan was saved as a young teenager. Bill says that shortly after his salvation he believed that God would have him be a preacher. Susan, as a young girl was willing to be used as God would see fit. Neither of us thought that God would call us to a place like Brazil.
In 1970, Susan and Bill were married and moved to Greenville, South Carolina. While there, Susan finished her elementary education degree at Bob Jones University. God then led Bill to start school at the University the following year. We had no idea what God wanted us to do. Bill had forgotten about the desire I had some eight years before to be a preacher. He majored in education thinking he could teach in a Christian school. During this period we prayed that God would show us how He wanted us to serve Him.
On April 13, 1975, our pastor preached from 1Corinthians 16:9, he said that God opens a door, not doors. We are to go through that door. To not go through the door is sin. On that night we went forward to tell God that we would go anywhere and do anything He wanted.
God started working on our hearts about missions. Bill wanted to go to Canada, England, or Australia. Why? Because they speak English! He didn’t feel that he could learn a foreign language. But God led us to Brazil. How? By opening one door at a time. He used the right people that had correct relationship with the Lord to lead us along the way. After two years of deputation we arrived in Brazil on September 16, 1978. Doing the math, on September 16, 2013, will make 35 years. God has been so good during all these years!
The tasks to be accomplished were overwhelming: Place to live, Adjustment to culture, Adjustment to other missionaries - probably the most difficult, Language study, and many other things to do.
There was also the future to be decided. Where would God have us minister? God had laid small city ministries our hearts. God had taken us to Brasilia to learn the language. But were we to stay? God demonstrated to us through the same methods used before that the answer was to go through the open door. (I Corinthians 16:9) He led us to a city of about 110,000 people called Ituiutaba, Minas Gerais. It was a new work, with new opportunities and with the same call to start an independent, fundamental Baptist church. We were in Ituiutaba for about 7 years. Then God led us to Catalão, Goiás and Araguari, Minas Gerais.
After seven years in Ituiutaba, God moved on our heart that it was time to move on. This time it was not I Corinthians 16:9. He used Hebrews 11:8. When we made the decision to leave Ituiutaba we did not know where God wanted us to go. He used Hebrews 11:8 to move us, and a family in Catalão to call us. We have been in Catalão for over twenty-five years now, and the next few years will be involved in Church Planting, and Camp Ministry as well as speaking in churches and helping Brazilian pastors.
Our children are now serving the Lord in the States. Susana Ruth is married to Rafael Cordeiro. They live in North Carolina.
Our furlough is scheduled for May through November 2015.
Please contact us through:
Gospel Fellowship Association
Suite 110, 1809 Wade Hampton Boulevard
Greenville, South Carolina 29609-4061
Phone: (864) 609-5500