Joe and Rachel Clarke work with the Grupo Bíblico Universitário (GBU) – the Portuguese student Christian movement. They seek to evangelise and disciple university students and equip them for future Christian ministry.
Portugal has a population of almost 11 million people yet less than 100,000 attend an evangelical church. Within Portuguese universities there are few professing believers and the Christian student movement is small. There is a great need to develop the GBU’s work so that Christian students can reach out to fellow students with the gospel.
Joe trains and supports the GBU student leaders and helps run evangelistic events and courses. He and Rachel both study the Bible one-to-one with a number of students. Alongside this, Rachel is a full-time mum to Beth, Hannah, Joshua and Timothy.
To find out more about this service visit prayermate.net
‘Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me’ John 14:1
Tudo vai ficar bem. This is the slogan that the Portuguese government has been using over the past year and it means ‘everything is going to be ok’. It’s been on billboards, in TV ads, on all sorts of supermarket products, and on pictures of the rainbow that have been stuck up on windows throughout the city. It’s a message that has sought to assuage people’s fears and give them hope during this difficult time. And for several months, it seemed to work. Until January, that is. For in January, despite all the PR, it became clear that everything was most definitely not ok. The COVID rate had risen exponentially to the point where we had become officially the worst place in the world when it came to COVID cases and deaths relative to population size. Frustration and fear had returned, schools and shops had shut again and a hard lockdown was brought back in. ‘Tudo vai ficar bem’ continued to be the slogan, but everyone knew that it was just empty words, meaningless and without basis.
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