October 2018 Newsletter

Dear Friends and Family,

Thank you for your prayers and support. They have been greatly appreciated.

I just wanted to give a quick update on a few things that are going on here in Macapá. As we mentioned in our last update, our church has been growing and we have been actively looking for a larger space where we can meet. I wanted to let you know that we believe we have a solution!

Denise and I are in a rental agreement with our present house, and on our property sits a smaller structure that is being used as storage for the owner of our house. From the moment we moved into our home, we thought it would be cool to use this smaller structure for our services, but because the owner was using it we never had access to it. Over the last few months we have developed a good relationship with the owner. She has been big fan of Denise and me, and of our ministry. She has always loved the idea that her property is being used to hold church. This last month she informed us that she is going to move all her valued belongings out of the storage facility and if we want, we can use the structure to hold our services!

This came at a time when we were becoming a bit frustrated because every space we looked at to rent failed to work out. So this news was definitely an answer to prayer and a reminder to us that God always has a plan.

Structure on the property

Although this small structure isn’t a permanent solution, we believe that it will double our current seating. The structure does need a lot of TLC and repairs to get it ready for a service, but these costs are certainly less than renting a new place over the next year. We just can’t wait to get started!

This last Sunday

With Alan and Ducy eating Mexican. We have been walking with these two for the last 8 months. They will be getting married this month.

The Family

Jonas is growing like crazy!

Jonas and Daddy bonding time.

Denise and I had some meetings in São Paulo last week. While we were there, we were able to attend the Southern Brazil Vineyard National Conference. Because travel is so difficult here in Brazil, they hold one National Vineyard Conference in the north and another in the south, and then every few years they try to do a big one all-together. Our time in São Paulo was great. It was fun and encouraging to connect with Vineyards from all over the south.

Unfortunately while we were in São Paulo I got really sick. Once we got back to Macapá, I was diagnosed with pneumonia. Although I am starting to feel a little better, I am still feeling pretty rough. Prayers would be greatly appreciated!

Other Prayer Requests:

  • Continued grace as we balance ministry and family life.
  • Provision for the practical needs associated with the renovation of our future meeting space.
  • Financial provision for the growing needs of our church and family.

Thanks again for your prayers and support. We love hearing from you!

In His Service,

Christopher and Denise

Contribution Link: https://xingu.org/opportunities/giving/meyer-ministries/

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September 2018 Newsletter

Dear friends

Thank you for your prayers and support. They have been greatly appreciated. These last few months have been a whirlwind of activity and we are excited to update you on some of the highlights!

We had an amazing visit from my parents along with Michael Hansen last month. We had so much fun together. It was great having them here to see what we are working on and to get their take on our next steps. Most special was introducing my parents to their new grandson, Jonas. We are already counting down the days until our next reunion!

My parents getting to know Jonas

Michael preaching at Vineyard Viva

Spending time with my parents and friends at a riverside restaurant

We recently took a short trip to Altamira for a pastor’s retreat. The retreat was enjoyable and extremely helpful for Denise and me. It was great connecting with other pastors from around the region. Denise’s parents and brother, Jonathas, were also in Altamira, which was awesome! This was our first trip out of the city with Jonas. We were curious about how he would do stuck on a boat for a few days, but he did better than expected which was a huge relief.

Jonas and me on the boat to Altamira

Hanging out with Denise’s parents and brother in Altamira

Jonas learning how to drive with Clenildo in Altamira

We are extremely excited about everything that’s going on in our new church plant. God has been at work! Over the last few months we have had 3 people make first time commitments to follow Jesus and multiple people recommit their lives to Jesus. We are working on scheduling our next baptism. Our numbers have also continued to rise. We are now averaging about 40 a week, sometimes more. This is awesome, but we have run out of space in our home. We are currently looking for a larger facility for the church. A few things are in the works – we will keep you posted!

A church gathering

Hanging out after church

As you have probably seen already on social media, Jonas is growing like crazy! Every week we see changes in Jonas. It’s fascinating watching him discover new things and develop new abilities. This experience has truly been a joy for Denise and me.

Jonas looking thoughtful

Denise and me

One thing we are realizing is that we will need to raise some extra financial support. With expenses for a family of three, growing ministry costs that come along with a new church, and travel expenses necessary for our work, we have noticed that our expenditures are now greater than our income. Please keep us in your prayers regarding this. If you feel led to begin supporting what we are doing here or to increase your support even by a little, we would be so blessed!

A few more prayer requests:

  • Wisdom and provision for a new meeting place for Vineyard Viva.
  • Grace to balance life and ministry as we care for our son and growing church.

Thank you for your prayers and ongoing support. We love hearing from you.

In His Service,

Christopher & Denise

Contribution Link:https://xingu.org/opportunities/giving/meyer-ministries/

June 2018 Newsletter

Dear Family and Friends,

When I was in middle school, once a year we had a day called “career day”. On this day, instead of coming into school, we were allowed to shadow a professional at their place of work. One year I decided to shadow a pastor. My dad set up the day with his good friend and fellow pastor, John Moriarty. To be quite honest, I remember very little from any of my career days, but there were a few things that happened during my time with John that have been etched into my mind ever since. After meeting John at the church, much to my surprise, I was informed that we weren’t going to be hanging around the building all day. As you can probably guess, I was more than okay with this. Hanging around the church all day didn’t exactly sound fun as an adolescent pastor’s kid.

The first place John took me was to the newborn unit of a hospital. As we stood there looking through the glass at all the newborn babies, John began to explain that one of the great joys of his job was how he regularly has the privilege of witnessing new life. As a pastor he would often be invited into the hospital to share the special moment of a baby entering this world, but also regularly would be witness to individuals turning towards Jesus and experiencing new spiritual life. Our next stop was very different… John took me to a cemetery. As we walked around the cemetery, he began to explain a whole different side of his job. He explained that a large part of his job was also walking with others through great hardships, dealing with crisis, sickness and even death.

I’m not really sure how much of what John was trying to teach me really sunk in at that point, but during this last month, I have reflected a lot about his words all those years ago and how true his words really were. We have had many blessings this last month. Our church continues to grow and mature. We are having amazing moments – experiencing God in tangible and awesome ways. We even had our first baptism.

Our first baptism

But it was also this month that Denise and I faced probably the most difficult ministry experience in our lives to date. It was just a few days after our first baptism that we received the news that our dear friend Kazu, a member at Vineyard Macapá (our former church), had taken his own life. The news was heartbreaking to say the least. Everyone in the Vineyard family here in Macapá was devastated. Many from both Vineyard Macapá and Vineyard Viva had close connections to Kazu and his family.

Kazu

Denise and I have been doing our best to assist the family and the two churches through this process. Because there are so many who have been deeply impacted by this, our job has at times felt overwhelming – not to mention that we ourselves are trying to process what happened as well. We realize how important it is to be well connected to God through times like these. Wearing out or burning out would be inevitable without the God’s presence in this. We have been encouraged to see how the churches have gathered around the family and the ones hurting the most, and also have been touched by the way God has continued to come and meet us in the midst of tragedy. We still have a long way to go, but God has definitely been guiding us through.

As is always the case, there has been great joy even through the hard times. As I mentioned, the church is doing super well, and of course, Jonas brings us daily joy.

Jonas and Denise



Jonas and me

Enjoying the World Cup

We woke up one morning and this animal was stuck in our pool. It is known as a “lesser anteater” or here in Brazil it’s called “tamaduá”.

Luckily we were able to save it!





Prayer Requests:

1) Pray for Kazu’s family.

2) Continued grace and strength to help our friends who are grieving.

3) Wisdom in planning and discipleship as Vineyard Viva continues to grow.

4) For Denise and I as we take care of Jonas and each other.

Thank you as always for your prayers and support. We love to hear from you!

In His Service,

Christopher and Denise

Contribution Link: https://xingu.org/opportunities/giving/meyer-ministries/

May 2018 Newsletter

Dear Family and Friends,

Wow! What a month. It has been crazy, but awesome.

My home church, Vineyard Church of Delaware County, sent a team to visit us. It was great to spend time with them – and with J.T., my brother.

The VCDC Team

I’ve got to be honest, though. The best part of our month was the birth of Denise’s and my son, Jonas Taylor (J.T.) Meyer. He was born on April 28 at 7 pounds, 3 ounces. He is healthy and doing great. Denise had a C-Section and is recovering well. We have had a full house both with Denise’s parents staying with us as well as visitors. We’ve been really busy but with lots of good stuff.

Our Family




The church plant is doing wonderfully. Vineyard Viva is enjoying an increase in numbers both by birth J and visitors.

Thank you for your prayers and ongoing support for us as we adjust to being a family of three and continue to pastor our growing church. We love hearing from you.

In His Service,

Christopher & Denise

Contribution Link: https://xingu.org/opportunities/giving/meyer-ministries/

March 2018 Newsletter

Dear Friends and Family,

Denise and I wanted to take a moment to say hi and thank you again for your prayers and support. You mean so much to us!

As you can imagine, we are super busy with the church plant and preparing for the baby. We are super excited to meet our son. Here are a few fun picture so you can share in our excitement.

Vineyard Viva


Denise, baby and me


This month, Xingu Missions asked us to write an article for their quarterly newsletter. We thought you might enjoy reading what we wrote:

It was just over two years ago that Denise and I arrived in the city of Macapá. We originally came here to help the existing church. There was also an additional plan to plant more churches in the Macapá region. This second plan always seemed a bit far off. I knew that at one point we would want to plant churches, but I always looked at it as pretty far down the road. After a year and a half in Macapá, we realized that things were moving a bit more quickly than what we anticipated. The church we were sent to help was doing great, the divisions in the church had subsided and the attendance had tripled. We began to realize that maybe it was time for us to start really thinking about planting. After having talks with the leadership in the church along with some of our missionary supervisors, it was decided that it was indeed time for the next step.

This last December we made it official and along with fellow missionary Bob Lesher and 8 others we had our first service for our new church, Vineyard Viva (Alive Vineyard). In the 3 months of our existence, God has taught me many things. Of the many things he has taught me, the most significant thing I have learned is to keep my focus and the church’s focus on Him. I know that this sounds simple, but let me unpack this a bit. With a new church, everyone is extremely excited with a lot of ideas: ideas for "in church" ministries, ideas for outreach, ideas on the style in which our church will operate, ideas for everything. The temptation is to make "ideas" and "vision" our Number 1 focus. Although ideas, vision and planning are good things, one thing I continued to hear God speak to me was that we need to be extremely deliberate in placing our focus on Him before anything else. I really sensed God saying that if our focus stays on Him, he will bless our church.

We have already seen God’s blessing on our church. Our numbers have begun to rise, but most importantly, we are seeing God come and meet and impact people. We are already seeing lives changed and this more than anything is exciting. We know we are at the first steps of a long journey and have much to learn, but we couldn’t be any more excited. We feel as long as we stay connected to God and His leading, we will end up exactly where we are supposed to be.

Prayer Requests:

  • Please pray safety and health for Denise and our son through labor and delivery.
  • Pray for the upcoming transition as we go from a family of two to three.
  • Continue to pray for our church as it continues to grow.

Thank you again for your prayers and support. We love to hear from you.

In His Service,

Christopher and Denise

Contribution Link: https://xingu.org/opportunities/giving/meyer-ministries/

January 2018 Newsletter

Dear Friends and Family,

Thank you for your prayers and support. They are always very greatly appreciated.

Things have been going really well for us lately. Denise is now at the six month point of her pregnancy! It’s been so cool being able to feel the baby moving around inside her belly. We can’t believe that in three months we will be bringing a baby home! We are a bit nervous, but mostly excited!

Denise and our baby

One slight complication is that Denise has a hernia. She believes she actually got this hernia when she was young, but it was never taken care of. As the baby has grown, the hernia is being pushed out and has begun to show itself again. Because of the strain of giving birth, her doctor has recommended a C-section. During this surgery, the doctor will also take care of the hernia. This has been a bit of a disappointment, but Denise has moved past it and now feels complete peace about the plan.

We are having a lot of fun seeing what God is already doing through our new church plant. We planted our church six weeks ago with eight other individuals. We have enjoyed growing closer to the team and seeing deeper relationships develop. We also have had new people beginning to show up which is very exciting. The last three weeks we have seen between 20 and 30 at our services. We are working hard trying to connect with all the new people and help them feel part of what we are doing.

Church Party

Here is Bob Lesher from VCDC who is part of our church plant, too.

I want to take a minute to share a little personal triumph in my life. As I’ve mentioned in past updates, learning Portuguese has been a battle for me. It has definitely been a "two steps forward, one step back" process. Over the last year, I have seen some huge leaps and advances in my Portuguese, but one thing has always felt out of reach – preaching in Portuguese. Although I have been meeting and counseling individuals in Portuguese for a while now, when it comes to preaching, Denise has continued to translate for me. You see, not only has Portuguese been difficult, but since I was young I have had a deep rooted fear of speaking in front of groups of people to the point of having panic attacks. Since arriving in Brazil my thought has always been, "How could I possibly preach in Portuguese when I can barely do it in English?"

While on my furlough back in the States, I was lying in bed one morning and had a thought cross my mind, "When you return to Brazil you need to begin to preach in Portuguese." Initially I ignored the thought, but I just couldn’t get it out of my mind. I began to sense that this was really the Holy Spirit speaking to me. Although the thought of preaching in Portuguese terrified me, I made a commitment in that moment to be obedient soon after I returned to Brazil.

I’m happy to report that this last Sunday, I did my sermon in Portuguese. I was nervous beforehand, but once I started, it felt so much more comfortable than I expected it to be! Everyone was very encouraging and supportive. People were actually taking notes! I remember thinking, "I can’t believe they actually understand all this!" I know I have a ways to go, but this step was a huge one for me.

Me preaching in Portuguese

Prayer Requests:

1) Please pray for continued growth and health of our new church plant, and for relational connections in our new neighborhood.

2) For continued grace to preach in Portuguese.

3) Good health for Denise and our baby.

Thanks again for your prayers and support. We love to hear from you, even if it’s just a quick hello.

In His Service,

Christopher and Denise

Contribution Link: https://xingu.org/opportunities/giving/meyer-ministries/

December 2017 Newsletter


Dear Friends and Family,

Thank you for your prayers and support. They have been greatly appreciated.

Denise and I have been back in Brazil for almost 2 months now and it has been a whirlwind of activity. We wanted to take a minute to catch everyone up on what’s been going on here!

We enjoyed our annual Missionary Care Retreat with the rest of the Xingu Mission missionaries. Our guest speakers this year were Bill and Dotty Christensen from the Columbus Vineyard. We really like Bill and Dotty and thoroughly enjoyed the activities they led us in. And as always, we had a blast hanging out with everyone!

From our retreat

We moved into a new house! We feel so blessed that we were able to find this house. Because our church plant is starting in our new home, there were a few things that we knew would be necessities, primarily a location close to downtown and a good distance from the existing Macapá Vineyard. We also were looking for a home with enough open room space to function well for our beginning church plant. We feel like this house just fell into our lap and couldn’t be any happier.

Our new home

This past week we had the first service of our new church plant. Everyone was so excited to get started and the night was great. The Holy Spirit’s presence was tangible all evening. We all really felt like this was the start of something special.

Our new church plant

Denise and I are becoming more and more excited for our baby to arrive! It’s definitely surreal knowing that a baby is growing inside of my wife! Denise was able to find a good doctor and the pregnancy is going well.

Denise


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Please pray:

1) For growth and health of our new church plant, and for relational connections in our new neighborhood.

2) That the Lord would continue to bless the Macapá Vineyard.

3) Good health for Denise and our baby.

We miss being home for the holidays – it is still such an adjustment to be away from family and friends in the U.S. We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and wonderful New Year!

Thanks so much for your love and support. We love hearing from you!

In His Service,

Christopher & Denise

Contribution link: https://xingu.org/opportunities/giving/meyer-ministries/