Thursday, October 11, 2012

Medical Leave

Dear Praying Friends, Thank you so much for all of your prayers for us and for the Gaúcho People during the September Month of Prayer. We are confident that God is going to do great things in answer to your prayers! As you know, we are on medical leave in the USA to investigate Cam’s health situation. Right now, the doctors believe that she has an undifferentiated inflammatory disease that if not properly treated, could develop into something even worse such as Lupus or some other auto immune disease. She is on steroids, which help her to be mobile and have less pain, but don’t actually treat the disease. She has also begun taking medicines which should treat the disease, but those meds take 3-6 months to begin working. In short, the doctors here want us to wait 5 or 6 months to see if we’re on the right course. This means that our medical leave will turn into medical furlough, and we probably won’t be able to get medical clearance to return to Brazil until March or so. We’re still believing that God is going to heal Cam completely and that He is working all of this out according to His perfect plan for us and for the people of Porto Alegre. Please pray with us for Cam’s healing, as well as for our entire family during this time of transition. We will be bouncing back and forth between our parent’s homes and available mission houses in between homeschooling, doctors appointments, etc. With thanks for your prayers and your partnership with us, Jeff

Monday, October 01, 2012

The Metropolitan Porto Alegre area of South Brazil is home to more than 5 million Urban Gaúchos, less than 1% of whom have a saving relationship with Jesus Christ. September is an important month for the Gaúchos, as it marks the anniversary of their civil war against Brazil which shaped their distinct cultural pride and fierce independence. Millions of Gaúchos turn out to celebrate their culture and heritage in civil war reenactments and celebrations this month. The Month of Prayer for the Gaúcho People recognizes the spiritual significance of this month and draws together believers across geographical, cultural, and denominational lines to declare that September is a turning point when through prayer, the Gaúchos who have lived in darkness WILL see a great light, and that the gospel will take firm root and spread throughout this spiritually needy land. Pray that God would raise up more prayer warriors to stand with us and the Gaúchos before the throne of God and declare that God will raise up His church and that His light will shine brightly in Porto Alegre! Stay tuned to this blog daily throughout September for new prayer requests on behalf of the Gaúchos. Thank you for standing with us in prayer!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

September 30th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Glorious Father, we ask that You move powerfully and pour out your Spirit to bring a great awakening and revival to Metropolitan Porto Alegre. “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8

Saturday, September 29, 2012

September 29th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Father, may the gospel flow from Porto Alegre to the ethic and religious groups throughout the rest of the state of Rio Grande do Sul. “He said to them. ‘Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.’” Mark 16:15

Friday, September 28, 2012

September 28th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Lord, may the Christians in Porto Alegre who have relatives in other places have the desire and the burden to take the gospel to them. Let there be a movement of churches flowing out of Porto Alegre to touch the whole world. “Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends.” Acts 10:24

Thursday, September 27, 2012

September 27th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Father, we pray that Your servants in Porto Alegre would be gentle and flexible, and that they would use creative methods to reach this generation for Christ. “Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.” Matthew 9:17

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

September 26th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Lord, we pray for those You are calling into the harvest in Porto Alegre and ask that You would help them to be obedient to respond and diligent to the task You have given them. “Don't you have a saying, 'It's still four months until harvest'? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.” John 4:35

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

September 25th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Loving Father, we cry out to You for unity among the different churches and groups of Your children, that they would learn to unite their forces to expand Your Kingdom in and around Porto Alegre. “I in them and you in me —so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” John 17:23

Monday, September 24, 2012

September 24th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Our Providential God, we ask You to supply all the needs of the families of the missionaries, church planters and leaders in Porto Alegre. “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19

Sunday, September 23, 2012

September 23rd Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Oh Lord, guide the missionaries and leaders in Porto Alegre to know with whom to work so that they may reach multitudes with the gospel. “May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us — yes, establish the work of our hands.” Psalm 90:17

Saturday, September 22, 2012

September 22nd Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

All powerful God, we cry out for the salvation of the leaders in the predominant religions of the people of Metropolitan Porto Alegre. “So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.” Acts 6:7

Friday, September 21, 2012

September 21st Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

In the powerful name of Jesus we pray that Gaúchos will be freed from the grip of idolatry and their eyes be opened to the truth of Your gospel. “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:4

Thursday, September 20, 2012

September 20th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Father, may the rituals and religious festivals of the Gaúchos leave them aware of the void in their lives and drive them to seek You, the only Living God. “When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, "Brothers, what shall we do?” Acts 2:37

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

September 19th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Oh, Lord Jesus, we pray that You would burden many of Your children in Porto Alegre with the task of starting ministries to special groups: large apartment and condominium complexes, gangs, university students, ethnic groups, etc. “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism.” Acts 10:34

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

September 18th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Lord as we share the gospel in and around Porto Alegre, lead us to find many “people of peace” with whom to start new churches. “When you enter a house, first say, 'Peace to this house.' If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you.” Luke 10:5-6

Monday, September 17, 2012

September 17th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Oh Lord, we pray that Your people will saturate the Metropolitan Porto Alegre Area with your precious gospel. “….for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.” Isaiah 11:9

Sunday, September 16, 2012

September 16th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Father, burden the hearts of the Gaúcho Christians and Your children around the world to form many prayer teams to intercede for the people of Porto Alegre. “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14

Saturday, September 15, 2012

September 15th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Lord, direct every decision, every strategy and every plan as churches are started in the Porto Alegre area. “Be strong, and let us fight bravely for our people and the cities of our God. The LORD will do what is good in his sight.” 1 Chronicles 19:13

Friday, September 14, 2012

September 14th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Oh, Holy Spirit, convict the people of Porto Alegre of their sin and their need for a Savior. Oh God, we cry out for their souls. “When he comes (The Holy Spirit), he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment.” John 16:8

Thursday, September 13, 2012

September 13th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

We ask you, Oh God, that the new churches that are started in and around Porto Alegre will have the wisdom and enthusiasm to minister to their communities in a significant way. "Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth." 1 John 3:18

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

September 12th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Oh, Lord Jesus, please help the missionaries, church planters and leaders in Porto Alegre give a good testimony to the Urban Gaúchos of their love for You. “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:35

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

September 11th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

All-powerful God, protect and strengthen the marriages of the missionaries, church planters and leaders in Porto Alegre. “Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord…Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” Ephesians 5:22,25

Monday, September 10, 2012

September 10th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Heavenly Father, protect and strengthen the children and families of the missionaries, church planters, and leaders in Porto Alegre. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right….Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” Ephesians 6:1,4

Sunday, September 09, 2012

September 9th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Father, protect your servants serving in Porto Alegre from all danger and attacks from the enemy while they minister in Your name. “Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’” Psalm 91:1-2

Saturday, September 08, 2012

September 8th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Our God, we ask you to form many church planting teams with the desire to start multiplying churches in and around Porto Alegre. “….then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.” Philippians 2:2

Friday, September 07, 2012

September 7th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Lord, let their be unity among all of your churches in Porto Alegre. May they have the same vision and heart to reach their city and their world for Christ. “….that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” John 17:21

Thursday, September 06, 2012

September 6th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Lord, we ask you to develop many networks of reproducing churches in Porto Alegre and that they would multiply many times over. “So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.” Acts 6:7

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

September 5th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

All Powerful God, we ask you to give wisdom to the church planters and pastors in Porto Alegre so that they can find the keys to communicating the gospel to the Gaúcho people and to know how to use them in a relevant and understandable way. “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

September 4th Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Father, we ask for Your direction in identifying the barriers to communicating the gospel in a relevant way to the Gaúchos in Porto Alegre. We ask in the name of Jesus that the barriers be broken down. “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” 2 Corinthians 10:4

Monday, September 03, 2012

September 3rd Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Lord, we pray that the leaders for the new churches would be strengthened in their walk with You, and that they would receive the training they need to lead the new churches effectively. “Paul and Barnabas appointed elders for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, committed them to the Lord, in whom they had put their trust.” Acts 14:23

Sunday, September 02, 2012

September 2nd Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Holy Father, we ask You that many new churches be started all across the city by existing churches and church planting missionaries and teams. “So the churches were strengthened in the faith and grew daily in numbers.” Acts 16:5

Saturday, September 01, 2012

September 1st Prayer Request for the Gaúcho People

Oh, Lord of the Harvest, we urgently ask You to send many workers to Porto Alegre. There are more than 5 million souls that need you. “He told them, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.’” Luke 10:2

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

August 8, 2012 Dunson Diaries

Dear Praying Friends, Thank you so much for your prayers for our family here in Porto Alegre, Brazil. We are enjoying a relatively mild winter here, although the weather is not nearly as warm as many of you are experiencing in the States! Please continue to pray for Cam’s health situation. Since January, she has been experiencing severe pain in her joints, in addition to stiffness, swelling and inflammation. It has gotten to the point where she virtually unable to get up without help, is extremely limited in her movements and activities, and is all but bedridden on her bad days. After going through a wide battery of tests with numerous doctors and specialists, they have finally decided that it is some sort of relatively rare auto immune disorder. The best guess of the rheumatologist is that it is Undifferentiated Connective Tissue Disease (UCTD), although the lab results do not line up completely neatly with that diagnosis. The doctor is telling us that treatment can take up to six months to begin to show a difference, if indeed this is what she has. She started taking medicine for UCTD a few days ago, but is not tolerating it well and has been told to stop for a few days to see if her system can recover before she starts back on it. The mission doctors have advised Cam to also seek treatment options at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, MD. Her records should be arriving there in the next day or so, and their team of doctors will examine her case to see if there is anything they can do there that she is not receiving here in Brazil. If that is the case, they will schedule an appointment, which could be from one to three months from the time she is accepted as a patient. We ask you, first and foremost to ask God to bring complete and total healing and freedom from pain and the other affects of this disease. Please pray as well that if she is supposed to be taking this medicine, that she would not have any more side effects. Also pray that the doctors here, at the Mission, and at Johns Hopkins will have wisdom to know what is going on and to know if she can be helped by going to the USA. If so, we are looking at taking a medical leave from the mission and we are asking for perfect timing on when appointments are scheduled, flights, etc. We firmly believe that through whatever means He chooses, God is going to heal her completely and that He will be glorified as a result! On the ministry front, there is a lot going on this month. Jeff will be teaching an intensive class on missionary strategy at the seminary, in addition to speaking at a leadership retreat, preaching at a couple of evangelistic services, and ongoing weekly Bible studies. Please pray for God’s Spirit to fill us and to lead as we minister. Also, the Ward family who are apprentice missionaries on our team will be going on medical leave next week to deal with some learning issues with one of their sons. Please pray that God would provide richly for them and that they would get answers on how to handle the situation so that they will be able to return soon and better than ever. September is fast approaching, and along with it, the Annual September Month of Prayer for the Gaúcho People. We will be sending out a daily prayer calendar along with our next Dunson Diaries in a few weeks. Downloadable bulletin inserts with the daily requests for your church will also be available shortly on the team website at As always, if you would like to see some recent family and ministry pictures, feel free to check Cam’s facebook page. We value your prayers more than you know – thank you so much! Jeff, Cam, Blake and Parker Dunson

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

May 2012 Dunson Diaries

Dear praying friends, Greetings from Porto Alegre, Brazil, where winter is fast approaching and school is beginning to slow down. Blake and Parker are winding down their homeschool year (in 7th and 2nd grade, respectively) and excited about the prospect of having less work for a few weeks (Cam is even more excited than they are!) They continue to be active in keyboard, orchestra, swimming and fencing (Blake) and piano, swimming and gymnastics (Parker). On top of church and ministry opportunities, this tends to keep the boys quite busy! Thanks to your prayers, all of our volunteer teams not only survived their time here, but had fruitful ministry opportunities as well. The teams did evangelistic home visits, assisted with a soccer ministry, and presented the gospel in several schools through classroom visits and assemblies. This work was done in conjunction with our local Baptist Convention and several church plants in satelite cities around Porto Alegre. Through an interesting set of circumstances, God opened up an opportunity for one of our volunteer teams to get onto a local witchdoctor’s property and to share the gospel with her and her husband. They both made decisions for Christ. During the course of that same week, we were also able to lead two other couples to Christ who were directly involved in Afro-Brazilian spiritism. During our next volunteer team, we had the privilege of leading the principal and assistant principal of a public school to Christ in their office during recess, which also isn’t something that we get to do everyday! Please pray for all of those who have made decisions for Christ over the past few weeks and months in these and other evangelism impacts. Pray that they will remain firm in their decisions and grow in their relationship with Christ. Please pray for us, our team of missionaries, and our national co-workers as we continue to do follow-up studies with new believers and work to establish new churches with those who have accepted Christ. Please pray as well for Cam, who has been having severe and unexplained pain in her feet and legs, which is limiting her ability to function. She is consulting with several doctors and continuing with a battery of tests, all of which has helped us to know a lot of things that she doesn’t have, but has yet to provide answers for what is going on. We ask you, first and foremost to ask God to bring complete and total healing and freedom from pain. Please pray as well that the tests will be accurate and the doctors will have wisdom to know what is going on so that we can know what to mention in her testimony about how God healed her! If you would like to see some recent family and ministry pictures, feel free to check Cam’s facebook page. With thanks for your prayers and support, Jeff, Cam, Blake and Parker Dunson

Sunday, January 29, 2012

TRANS Rio Grande do Sul

The Brazilian Baptist Home Mission Board (JMN) sponsors an annual evangelism project called Jesus TRANSforma (Jesus Transforms). During the "TRANS," Baptist volunteers throughout Brazil spend two weeks investing their lives in another part of the country. They do evangelistic surveys, pre-scheduled home visits, Bible studies, small groups, worship services, etc - basically whatever the local church or church start needs in the way of evangelism.

Only about half the number of volunteers the churches were planning for signed up, so there will be more than enough work for those who are here!

Our team of missionaries ( is helping with the TRANS project over the next two weeks in three different cities in Metropolitan Porto Alegre (Porto Alegre, Guaíba, and Eldorado do Sul). Please pray for safety, stamina and supernatural fruit as a result of this outreach.

The photo above is of the kickoff service before the volunteers scattered out to the various churches where they will be working.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Brazilian Baptist Convention

I had the privilege this past week of attending the Brazilian Baptist Convention meeting in Foz de Iguaçu. More than 2,200 Baptists from all over Brazil gathered to worship, discuss, and report on what God is doing all over this vast country.

There are currently 1.5 million members of Brazilian Baptist churches and more than 2 million people regularly attending worship. As far as churches go, there are 7,900 constituted churches and more than 12,800 buildings where Baptists meet (churches and or church plants).

It was tremendously encouraging to hear about the incredible things that God is doing in and through Brazilian Baptists. Drug addicts are finding freedom and salvation (see previous post), missionaries are being sent out to places where missionaries from other countries cannot go, home and foreign mission agencies are working together (even presenting their reports on stage together in t-shirts representing each other's agencies!), volunteers are going all over Brazil to share their faith (see posts on the TRANS), and churches are being started and strengthened all over this vast nation.

Much has been accomplished in the last 100+ years, and it was a tremendous privilege to get to see the "big picture" view of Baptist work - so often, I am caught up in the details of our local work. However, there is much work left to be done. Brazil is big, and the needs are still huge. Please join me in praising God for what He has done in Brazil, and ask Him to raise up workers for the Harvest and pour out His Spirit to bring light to the dark places of Brazil and to use Brazilians to take the light to a darkened world.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Brazilian Baptist Convention - "Christland"

As I attended the Brazilian Baptist Convention this week, one of the big highlights was hearing about the drug treatment centers in "Crackland" which are rapidly becoming a reference as "Christland." To hear the stories about men being reunited at the convention with their mothers after years as prodigals was incredible, as was the chance to see a former transvestite stand up with his girlfriend and share his dream of becoming a missionary. Two immigrants from Africa who ended up as drug addicts on the streets of São Paulo got saved and delivered and are currently being trained to return to Africa as missionaries. It was a joy to see them leading their fellow recovering brothers and sisters in dancing and singing to the Lord. The above picture is of the choir from Christland.

I sincerely hope that I will never forget the sound of 200 former crack addicts singing at the top of their lungs "I am free, I am free. Only through the blood of Jesus I am free!" It was musically one of the worst sounding songs I have ever heard, but it was one of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard. It sent chills through your spine, and the sound of it is still ringing in my ears days later. The picture quality on the video is poor - but listen to the voices!