Olympic News – Brazilian Churches Reaching & Discipling Unchurched Kids
For the 10 years leading up to the Rio Olympics, "Legacy" is the primary goal of a Brazil sport ministry. The objective of the training of thousands of churches in 369 cities/towns is to have ongoing long term evangelism and discipleship ministry through sport and play. What exists in the churches a decade from now is their key outcome.
Ubabalo is the formal name for the teenage life-skill program created for the churches in South Africa who wanted “Legacy" outcomes when they hosted the 2010 World Cup of Soccer. Churches in Brazil have adopted this program and it is proving to be effective in both reaching teens for Christ and discipling them in good as well as very tough neighborhoods.
90% of the participants in the program are new to the Gospel, but are nevertheless excited to participate 27 times, twice a week for 3 months. It is even more surprising that these are teenagers.
Vila Margarida Favela in Sao Paulo is one of the largest and most dangerous ghetto-type communities in the world. Lay persons in a church serving there were trained and they organized an Ubabalo Cup life skill training for both the 14 and 16 year olds teams. The church continued to disciple the new believers by starting sports camps. One by one they are coming to faith and are being discipled as Christ followers to live in the rough life of Vila Margarida Favela.