Small Towns, Huge Challenges

nice sunset with a silhouette of a village wit...

The interior small villages reality in Norheast Brazil is quite a challenge for the brazilian church. Alcoholism, drugs addiction, unemployment, besides poverty, lack of proper answers from the public services (health and education) compose a lamentable and devilish picture, even worst than in the biggest cities.

The number of promiscuous places nearing the entrance of these cities is just an example. At first glance, it would be a simple symmetry issue. Yet, the reality provides us with a sense of a far greater issue: the outside wound as a result of one of the most fierce and chronic social diseases in the needy Brazil: the prostitution.

To worsen, the prostitution displays its fatal feature: children exploitation. 12 to 14 year-old boys and girls are attracted and seduced in exchange of clothing, drugs or small changes (R$10 to 20 for a sexual relation).

As time goes by, drugs – the initial allurement and reward – become an act of escaping from reality. How to endure such an affliction and still be clean? Besides this, the human traffic also takes place – from the country side to big cities, these children are sent to João Pessoa, Natal or Recife to work in “prostitution houses”. Some even are taken away to Europe, as merchandise. All of a sudden, they are 18 years old and are no longer useful. They hope for nothing else but death. They’re too “old” to maintain the business profitable. Thus, others will come. The interior is crowded with children.

The astonishing point is that trustful inquiries show that those who should stand for protecting such children are the ones who initiate and nurture them in prostitution. Parents and relatives, pursuing ambitiously money, conduct them to exploiters. Police officers, detectives, town councilors and even judges at small cities are eager clients. In big cities, politicians and businessmen afford sophisticated promiscuous places. Impunity, corruption and despair.

The poor Northeast childhood has silently been exploited and destroyed by human beings deformed by sin. Nevertheless, this sad reality can be changed. The heart of God is broken. His holiness and justice cry out on the streets. Christ was revealed to destroy the works of the evil one, and the Church is to be salt and light, carrying salvation and spilling the grace balm that heals, restores and gives new meaning to people’s lives.

We from Teleiós want you to stand in intercession for these people. We believe that prayer can change circumstances and touch people, right where they are. Also, your prayer can help us hear more clearly from the Lord what He wants us to share as organization before such picture, once we are in the midst of it.

We long to remain faithful to our call, by means of listening to the Holy Spirit. We have received so much from the Lord, and for so long! Our prayer is that the years ahead brings us as much opportunities to share His grace and love as possible.

We count on you.

José R Prado

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