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Moving to a New Location
by J. Randal Matheny
As the church of God, we are pilgrims on the earth. Here in Sao Jose dos Campos, the congregation has been a literal pilgrim in its meeting places.
When two families began the work here in 1988, Alvaro and Linda Pestana and Otavio and Valeria Carvalho met in a conference room of the Urupema Hotel. After that period proved unfruitful, they rented a third-floor office space downtown. When our family moved here at the beginning of 1995, the church was still located here.
As the full-time evangelist, Alvaro worked in a store-front evangelism effort popular in Brazil, called the School of the Bible. I joined him later. Several conversions were made as a result of this outreach.
At the same time, we began a small-group ministry in homes. With several combined efforts, the church outgrew the downtown space and returned to the Urupema Hotel in the late 90s.
In mid-2002, the disiples in SJCampos decided to leave the Sunday-only location in the hotel and rent a building. The search lasted nearly a year. During that time, the owners of Urupema terminated our contract, so we met in two other hotels during the period of our search.
After a false start on another building, a five-year rent contract was signed in July for a building about 100 yards from the main city bus station downtown.
We hope to begin meeting in the new location in September. There are chairs to buy, dividers to put up for classroom space, doors to be installed, and a myriad of details. But the church decided to make the move soon and work on the needed changes as we go.
Five pictures are online showing interior and exterior views of the building.
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