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Guest Post: My Adventures in Brazil with the Comings Family

In June of this year Marcus Baltich, a student at Faith Baptist Bible College in Ankeny, IA, spent a month with us here in Brazil. What follows are his impressions of that time.

For those curious about what a one-month mission trip entails, I hope to provide an accurate picture and encourage you through my own experience.

First, let’s discuss what to expect. There will be unfamiliar situations, things you may not like, and moments of discomfort. However, do not let these minor inconveniences discourage you from embarking on a short-term mission trip, nor let them ruin your time there. From my experience, the best way to handle these surprises is to adopt an “it’s an adventure, so it’s not a big deal” mindset. This approach will save you from developing a negative attitude.

Secondly, immerse yourself in the culture as much as possible. While there may be areas where full immersion isn’t feasible, embrace the opportunities you have. This means trying different foods, learning the customs, and adopting the mannerisms of the people, even if it feels unfamiliar. Whatever you do, avoid correcting them or imposing your own culture.

Marcus, trying new foods.

Now, let’s delve into the day-to-day life during a one-month mission trip in São Luís, Brazil. Most of my days with Andrew and Itacyara Comings (missionaries with Baptist Mid-Missions) were spent living life alongside them. This meant participating in their daily activities, which often included mundane tasks. However, these days provided valuable time to rest, prepare for speaking engagements, and observe what everyday missionary life looks like.

So, what might you be doing while you are there? While I can’t provide exact details or a precise schedule for your trip, I can share a glimpse based on my experience.

Speaking engagements were a significant part of my trip. I delivered devotionals to unsaved teens, sermons at teen events and Sunday evening worship services, brief lessons at the Bible Institute, and Wednesday prayer meeting devotionals. As I didn’t speak the language, I relied on a translator, which, though challenging at first, became easier over time. (Editor’s note: for ways you can enhance your language skills leading up to a short-term visit, see here, here, and here.)

Marcus, speaking to a group of teens at a youth rally.

In addition to speaking, you’ll attend various meetings and spend time with locals. This includes meeting national pastors and participating in Q&A sessions with them, spending time with local Brazilians, playing soccer with neighborhood boys, engaging with kids at the club, visiting tourist sites, and exploring Mount Zion Camp.

Marcus held his own with our Brazilian kids!
Lunch with friends from church.
Q&A session with local pastors.

Would I recommend going? Absolutely! My time in Brazil was a tremendous blessing. It allowed me to connect more deeply with my missionaries, gain a broader perspective on life in both the United States and Brazil, and provided invaluable insights into missions and ministry. Be prepared to adapt, go with the flow, enjoy your time, and above all, seek to serve the Lord and others with love.


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And be sure to read the action-packed adventures of Missionary Max: Missionary Max and the Jungle Princess and Missionary Max and the Lost City.

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