February 14, 2005


Hey everyone,
This is John. This is a quick note to let you in on some prayer requests and some updates. We are sorry that we have not been so good at keeping up with you all. The past few months have been the busiest we have had yet here. First things first. We want to thank you for all the prayers and support that you have sent our way over the last year and a half. It is hard to believe but we have been here since June 2003! We have had a lot of blessings and trials and we are so happy that you all have been involved with us in some way.
We are in the process of writing and mailing our spring newsletter. It will come with pictures and updates on us and what we are doing. Not only with the House of Hope, but also with the orphanage. It has been a while since we did a newsletter about us so we are looking forward to it.
This week is a very big week for us. We will be hosting a team from Colorado Springs. They are members of an organization called EMI.
Engineering Ministries International travel around the world designing Christian projects, such as our orphanage, for free. We applied to them for their help and we were accepted in October! They will be here starting the 16th of February until the 23rd of February. Please keep this time for us in your prayers. We have been looking forward to this for such a long time and the Lord is doing things so quickly. While here, the team will be meeting with us to determine what we would like the project to look like and any other creative input we would like and then they will be starting to design the orphanage! They will work on it for the next 6 months or so and hopefully we will have designs in hand next fall!
The House of Hope recently got a "serious" makeover. Many of the urgent needs the HoH had are now no longer urgent! PTL!!! The Lord provided funding for us to rebuild and retile and raise certain areas of the HoH that were flooded last year! It will be such a blessing to be able to show pictures in the future.
The girls are awesome. Becca just turned 4 and she is quite the "bomb".
And if Becca is a bomb, than Gabi is a nuke. Gabi is really starting to talk a lot. She is fluent in "portuglish". Becca is fluent in both English and Portuguese. Both girls are in school and are enjoying life. They have also been suffering less with asthma since we have moved to our new apartment last June. The girls are getting along for the most part. Becca likes to body-slam Gabi though and Gabi likes the "tomahawk-chop" move to Becca's head. It is too cute though, they love to kiss and make up after a night of WWF smackdown on the living room floor. Both girls have their own bad habit's and things they/we are working on but they are truly a blessing to us.
Fabi and I are doing well too. We probably don't date as much as we should and we have been stressed out lately but we are enjoying each other and watching what the Lord is doing in our lives. We enjoy watching movies together and going to the beach when we have the free time. We also enjoy anyplace air-conditioned. It has been funny because in the past we have encountered people who think we live in the jungle swinging from the trees.
I can even tell them there are nearly 7 million people in the greater Recife area and they think there are 7 million people all swinging from the trees.
We have many of the amenities the US has, it's just a lot hotter, hence the desire for any place air-conditioned. You do not have to travel far to reach areas that I am sure would look familiar to most Americans eyes though.
I will end now but we just wanted to let you know we were still here and we think of you all at one time or another everyday. We miss you tons and hope to see you soon. Lord willing. Look for our newsletter to hit the stands in March and another HoH newsletter sometime after that. For those of you who skimmed this email to get to the end to see what are prayer requests were, here they are in no particular order:

*Pray for the upcoming EMI team visit. That the Lord will would be accomplished.
*Pray for finances and our budget. When we first moved here one dollar equaled 3.10 reais. Now it is one dollar to every 2.50 to 2.60 reias. Our budget was based on a 2.9 exchange rate so please pray for us concerning this. We need to make some adjustments and we need wisdom.
*Pray for our family and their continued protection.
*Pray for the children and staff at the House of Hope.
*Please ask the Lord to share something with you for us. We love to get emails from you all. Obviously, we pray about every word we receive and sometimes they are really right on. And sometimes, it is easy to tell who had pizza the night before. But we write down everything nonetheless. So please write.

I will go now. We love you and miss you! Thank you for remembering us in your quiet times and other times. We hope to hear from you soon. Write back to let us know how you are doing.


In His service,

John, Fabi, Becca and Gabi Schmidt