Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year from Mozambique

Caleb, Lorena, Brian, and Nate

In the photo below are the two widowed sisters go to our church and live on the other side of our wall, in a mud shack. Last Monday we saw their plight and began putting on a new roof for them. By Christmas Eve, you see here in the second picture their completed roof. The next day, the next day was Christmas day.  The rain finally came. Good timing. Looking inside their hut, we saw only a pile of old clothes, a torn up reed mat, and fallen down mud from their wall. So we quickly bought them two new mats for sleeping, and sheets. Their smiles and grateful hearts make everything worth it!



Inviting our local churches and government officials, we combined a special Christmas service with our building dedication (a miraculous 2-year project).  Thrilled with our beautiful building and ministry, the president of our district cut the ribbon with kind words.  The Church is under the government here, so our good standing in their eyes now is a huge victory. Some of you may remember a year ago they threatened to kick us out because of false accusations brought against us...  God told us at the time in the midst of the spiritual battle that we had already won and not to give up, because He had great plans for this place.  Now you see the living proof!  Afterwards we served over 1,000 chicken dinners to this very happy bunch!
Sunday Morning Celebration!

For those who didn't already read our Facebook post about the amazing things God did with our team's recent relief outreach to Lugela, click here -
Praying for the Sick in Lugela

Distributing to the Poor

We wish you all a very blessed New Year!  Thank you for your continued support in prayer and finances.  This was a very fruitful year and we know next year will be even better. 
Much love,
Brian, Lorena, Caleb, and Nate

Support address for Brian and lorena

Transforming Lives Ministry

1908 S El Camino Real, San Clemente, CA 92672

Monday, December 7, 2015

Fruit in Lugela

Written by Lorena Wood

“It’s 5:00 a.m. – time to head out.”  The four adventurous missionaries, Stig, Stephan, Mandy, and Scott, pile into the car with their essentials – water bottles, tents, and toilet paper!  Four hours into the journey they come across the beautiful Pongwe River in Gorrongoza.  Many are washing their clothes and bathing, assured that the crocodiles were “down river”.  The four soak in the beauty, refresh themselves, and take their bathroom break the “natural” way - no bathrooms or convenient stores available on these road-trips.  Off again, slowly, precariously, through huge potholes - trying not to bottom out their little car.  Eight hours later they reach the guesthouse in Mocuba, Zambezia.  They were thankful no corrupt police stopped them to confiscate their documents for a bribe and no serious problems happened to the car, especially since good service stations don’t exist in these little villages along the way.  Enjoying their deserved night of rest in a comfortable bed, they prepared mentally for what the next few days would entail.  

“OK- I’m ready – I’ve made all the arrangements for the cornmeal and truck,” Zito proudly informs Stephan as they head to the store in Mocuba early the next morning.  Soon the vehicle is loaded with 150 sacks of cornmeal with Zito sitting on top, guiding the truck and leading the way for the missionaries following in their little car.  

Zito Leading the Way

They head to Lugela, where we showed the Jesus Film in the past - click on link to youtube video to see first outreach in this village: Zito and his wife, Josefina, have prepared the way for this distribution of food to their starving village.  Earlier this year floods destroyed their farms.  Now there was nothing to harvest and the people were desperate.  Each family in their village of Lugela would now receive one sack of cornmeal; enough to help hold them over till the beginning of the next harvest.  “Keep going!”  The dirt road turned into a narrow footpath with rows of newly planted corn on one side and tall grass on the other.  “No.  We must stop.  We can’t reach the village with this truck.  They will have to come to us.”  Walking the extra distance with no complaints, the women danced and sang their way to the missionaries, greeting them with exuberant African music.  Like a proud cheerleader, Josefina led the joyful crowd with a whistle and tennis shoes!   

Soon the entire village gathered under the large mango trees near the loaded down truck.  Having a perfect opportunity to share the gospel with so many that live by witchcraft and ancestral spirit worship (worshipping demons, basically), Stephan and Zito begin teaching the gospel message…. During this time, the Holy Spirit gives Stig a word of knowledge.  “There is a woman here that is crippled with severe pain in her legs.  God wants to heal you.”  An old lady gingerly stands up and with extreme difficulty, and comes to the front.  Stig prays for her and she is completely healed!  Most of these villagers have never seen God move in power.  Yet they’re well acquainted with the witch doctors’ methods. His demonic healings come with a costly price and sacrifice, however – often a shortened lifespan or sickness to a family member.  Excited, the villagers welcome the team’s invitation to return the next day for more teaching and ministry.  In time the distribution begins.  Each household in the village receives a large sack of cornmeal, expertly balancing the heavy cargo on their heads as they walk home to their mud huts with grass roofs.

Stephan and Scott placing a sack of corn meal on someone's head!

 After a full day in the extreme summer heat, the team refreshes themselves in the beautiful river.  Again the locals assured them that the crocodiles were down stream in the deeper parts!  They trustingly welcomed this information and enjoy swimming till the sun set.  A crowd of children inquisitively observes
these “unusual white foreigners” from the banks.  Slowly gaining courage, they jump in little by little, stripping to their underwear or nothing at all, till eventually about 40 joined in the fun.  Scott recounts, “It was the best river I’ve ever been in!”
Stig, Scott, and Stephan

Mandy and Scott
As the evening progressed, a bright full moon rose, reflecting over the river.  With no electricity in this village this moonlight and myriads of stars served well as Zito cooked dinner for the team over an open fire outside his house.  Eating African style with no utensils, the four enjoyed their rice, and chicken. But this was no ordinary chicken.  Five months earlier, Zito’s son, Arcenio, prayed for a 25 year-old man in this village who had been paralyzed from birth.  Jesus touched him and he was completely healed.  Now this same man brought his precious chicken to Zito during this time of drought and famine.  Out of sincere gratitude to Jesus for his healing, he insisted Zito cook this chicken for the missionaries.  Yet this was not their only incredible chicken meal.  

The next day began at sunrise, with a morning dip in the notorious river.  No sleeping in - tents basically become an oven in this scorching African summer heat.

Scott Pulliam

After a simple breakfast of bread and tea, all headed to the church.

Finding a shady spot!
Filled to the brim, the overflow sought shelter from the heat within earshot under a nearby mango tree.

God began to move.  Stephan and Zito taught the Word and Jesus began to heal the sick.  The blind saw – about 15 people received complete restoration of eyesight.  One was completely blind and healed. These were tested before and after being prayed for, by asking them to read from the Bible and look at things far away. To mention a few of the healings, a man with trembling uncontrollable hands was healed completely. (There are no proper doctors or hospitals to diagnose the disease, but Jesus knows and He healed the man!)  Before praying he could not hold a bottle of water.  After Jesus healed him, he could hold it perfectly fine, without any trembling.  Another woman had a paralyzed arm, with her arm bent so that her clenched fist was fixed next to her shoulder.  Jesus released her arm to full restoration.  She can now move her arm freely like everyone else! A completely mute lady was healed.  Three others who were partially mute were also healed.  Jesus healed a completely deaf man as well.  

Preaching at the Church

Ministry time continued for hours.  No one wanted to leave.  As the afternoon progressed, more and more sick people came to the church as the neighbors heard about the healings.  A little paralyzed girl received healing in her legs.  At the time she just began to move her legs while sitting down.  Terrified by these white faces looking at her, she refused to try standing up.  Today, however, we've received news that she is walking and her legs are gaining strength!  About 15 people got saved this day and 7 the day before.  As I write this story three weeks later, we’re receiving phone calls that more are coming to the church each week and getting saved.  Zito commented tonight, “These folks were stubborn and hard hearted.  They were never interested in going to church.  This is a real act of God.  They see now that He is real when their neighbors are getting healed and turning to Christ!”  

After hours of praying for the sick and seeing God heal the deaf, the blind, and the lame, Zito directed them away from the church, insisting that they rest.  It wasn’t till 4:00 before they ate lunch, but food wasn’t a top priority on a day like this!  The team eagerly took another refreshing swim at the river while Zito prepared yet another chicken with a story.  This one also began five months ago with Arcenio, Zito’s oldest son.  While visiting his village after his bible school concluded, he excitedly prayed for a lady with tuberculosis.  God completely healed her and consequently her husband became a believer.  Now this grateful husband sacrificially gave Zito a chicken to prepare for these visiting missionaries!

Stig and Zito visited the sight where we had arranged the digging of a well for the community so they’d have another water source when the waters rise in rainy season and the crocodiles come back (likely arriving within the month). All was going well.  Next they visited the sight where we had bought land for their widows and orphans.  Two houses had been constructed with a houseful of orphans in each, with widows taking care of them.  As evening approached, the team said their good-byes to Lugela and continued on to Mocuba where they would finish out their 5-day outreach – teaching a seminar to all the district pastors and their wives about marriage.  

God continues to move in this village and we’re confident it will be a catalyst for the whole province in the near future.  Zito and his family will be moving back to their village soon and make strategic plans to bring the gospel in Word and power to all the villages in Lugela.  It’s a very large province, but we will give him a motorcycle to help him get around.  There is no public transportation in these parts – just dirt footpaths where people walk or occasionally ride a bike.  Communication is difficult.  Most don’t have phones and there is no electricity.  We will help Zito set up a solar panel system with a marine battery so he and other pastors can charge their phones and communicate with each other and us.   Zito has been with us now for five years, first in Mocuba, and now in the Sofala province for four years.  It’s soon time for him to leave us and do the work of an evangelist and church planter in his province and others surrounding him.  He knows this is God’s calling on his life and these five years have prepared him well.  Ministering now in the power of the Holy Spirit and having a deep love for the Word of God, we know much more fruit is sure to come.  

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Witch Doctors Getting Saved!

Dear Family and Friends,

How are you?  We are all doing fine.  Brian just recovered from another bout of malaria, but he is well now.  We are busy with many things, but first we want you to introduce you to someone special.

Meet Dominga (above center).  She is one of 7 witch doctors that have come to Jesus these last few weeks in our surrounding area!  Dominga showed up at our church about 4 weeks ago, all on her own.  The Holy Spirit led her to us. She said she was tired of living in darkness with the bad spirits.  She heard the gospel and gave her life to Jesus that very day.  Since then we have been to her house and talked to her about starting a little business so she can make some money.  We learned that old clients were coming to her to pay their debts.  Though she was desperate for some money and food, she turned them away.  “I have stopped that lifestyle and don’t want your money,” she told them.  Dominga is a widow and has no children.  But she is now set free from the demons which had inhabited her for the past 30+ years.  (These were passed on to her from her grandmother, who was also a witch doctor.)  She is hungry for God and has almost finished our first course of discipleship lessons.  A couple from our church has been discipling her in her dirt yard under a mango tree.  Already such a light to her neighbors, 3 more have joined in with these lessons just in the last week.  When we visited her a few days ago, we suggested that before, her house was a center of darkness.  Now it will become a place of light for all to see as she talks to people and sells cornmeal and beans in her front-yard.  When we said this, we all felt the joyous presence of the Holy Spirit. It was so obvious and unexpected - we all stopped talking instantly, looked at each other in surprise, laughing together as we felt His pleasure!  We know God has a very special plan for Dominga and this new business.  “The thief comes only to steal, slaughter, and destroy. I've come that they may have life, and have it abundantly,” John 10:10.

The lady in pink in the top right picture is Dominga’s neighbor.  She came over when we visited, curious about what we were saying and teaching about God.  When we told her the gospel, she gladly accepted Jesus into her heart.  Now she is coming to the discipleship lessons with Dominga regularly! 

The man above, whom Debbie (fellow missionary) is talking to also accepted the Lord that day.  He was just visiting from out of town, looking for work.  We are excited to see the Holy Spirit at work in people’s lives -  “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves,” Col. 1:13.

We love you all and appreciate so much your prayers and support.

Many Blessings,

Brian and Lorena

For more info go to

More News from Mozambique

Dear Friends and Family,                                                          

How are you?  Our family is doing great.  We so enjoyed our time in the States and Europe.  Visiting with all of you friends, family, and churches was a blessing beyond description! 

We have been back in full swing in Mozambique for a while now.  Brian is back to preaching at our mother church, overseeing seminars, and working on various projects.  Our Church in a Day (C.I.A.D) program continues strong.  Currently fabricating three new churches, we plan on placing them in strategic areas in the Sofala Province within the next thirty days. 

Our C.I.A.D. in the community of Macharote is doing great.  The once little church of old widows has now grown to over 100 members.  If you haven’t seen our C.I.A.D video, please follow the link shown below.

Lorena is in the midst of teaching the youth from several churches how to do a children’s program, for Sunday school and community outreach.  Next week they will do it for the first time on their own.

(Above) Teaching and learning games with village kids.  Oral cultures, like Mozambique, learn best through drama, music, games, chants, stories, and activities.

Important upcoming seminar and recording project:  Next week we are having a large week-long seminar with Rick Leatherwood, a missionary from Ethiopia.  He will be teaching his “Oral Bible” – 70 key Bible stories.  Several hundred pastors will be attending.  Afterwards, we will be recording these stories and putting them on solar audio units and micro-SD chips which can go in their phones.  Please pray for everyone’s health (as malaria is an epidemic here), safe travels (pastors coming from many provinces on bad roads and unsafe public transportation), receptive hearts and minds, and success in this recording project.  Thank you!


The Wood Family

If you would like to support this ministry, go to the following link:

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


Mighty in Spirit and in Deed – that’s Mai Terazinha!  Two years ago she and her group of widows she met with in her little mud hut, came to us asking for help.  “Can you please buy us some land so we can build a church?”  We consented, and soon a visiting World Race team put up the firsts posts for her little church.  Later, however, these posts and bamboo strips were stolen.  Mai Terazinha never faultered.  She doesn’t read or write, but she prays, intercedes for her flock and all the surrounding churches.  Jesus gives her visions and dreams to encourage others.  Faithfully she listens intently to her audio solar powered Bible, and attends all our leadership training seminars.  When we recently endured many trials at our center, it was Mai Terazinha that organized her ladies to pray and fast for our center.  She also takes her ladies out to the other churches in our district, walking for miles in intense heat - visiting house to house, praying for the sick, and encouraging the brethren.  When we give out our discipleship booklets, this doesn’t deter her.  She asks a youth or man (most of the women don’t read) to read it to them so they can all learn together.  Nothing stops her.  She has no husband, but cares for six orphans in her little hut with no electricity or running water.  She continues to till her farm at the age of 65, providing for her household with the rice and corn she grows.  She has never attended Bible school, but listens to the audio Bible school course on her solar powered unit we gave her.  Recently we built her a strong metal church frame with a good roof, called “Church in a Day.” (see link:  They will likely fill in these walls with bricks over time.  (But we prefer the open walls with the cool breeze!) What blessed us the most was to see how her small group of widows had grown to a thriving church of men, women, youth, and children in these last two years!  Nothing is impossible with God.  Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord.  God uses the weak and lowly, so all glory goes to Him.  She doesn’t focus on what she doesn’t have or what she can’t do.  She spends time with Jesus, loves Him with all her heart, and spreads that love around.  A simple, illiterate, poor woman, but such a powerful example to us all.  Mai Terazinha – not just any ordinary widow!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Church in a Day

It is probably not surprising to know that building a strong church structure out of galvanized steel and metal roofing material is beyond the capacity of local churches in Mozambique.  Most of congregations we work with have churches made of sticks, bamboo, mud, and straw.  This year a large percentage of these building were completely destroyed by strong winds and rain. 
Our goal is to build strong and secure buildings throughout Mozambique.  We partner together with local churches.

We build the building and the local church puts up the block or brick walls.  We can put up a structure that is prefabricated at our center in one day.  The cost for each church is $2,500.   Please let us know if you would like to help with this project. 

Monday, January 5, 2015

Come and Join Us!

Come and join us as we gather together on the first Sunday of the new year.  Our new church building is almost finished.  We still need to finish the entry way, the floor, and we are waiting on more metal roofing to finish the ridge of the building.  Lorena's kids program is in our smaller church that is set up for the kids and seminars.