Hosting famous celebrities like Olivia Newton-John, Owen Wilson, Jennifer Lopez and John Voight is normal for Brazilian business woman Gloria Reynolds. Her company (Amazon Eco Sight) offers Amazon experience tours that attract hundreds of guests.
But in 2003, the Lord directed Gloria to start a ministry to villages along the Amazon River. She called it Raio de Esperanca na Amazonia (Ray of Hope, Amazon).
The first visit was to one family who had financial needs. But the next weekend they returned to find 120 villagers looking for help and hope.
Since then, Ray of Hope (ROH) has impacted as many as 950 communities and tribes by offering humanitarian aid and the "JESUS" film. They reach approximately 60 communities and isolated villages in the Amazon Basin each year.
Ten years ago, Gloria married Patrick. Together, based in Manaus, they recruit for and lead mission trips to families in the jungle's interior.
In 2018, ROH began using the "JESUS" film in multiple locations as part of its strategy. When people see the film, they ultimately decide to follow Christ.
Gloria says, "The atmosphere the film provides is one of family and community … an awesome tool for bringing people together to hear the gospel."
For the past several years, Mountain Springs Church of Colorado Springs has partnered with ROH to reach Brazilians. This summer Pastor Chris Steenmeyer, along with several church members—including Jesus Film Project missionary Tez Brooks—traveled to Brazil.
Living on a riverboat and sleeping in hammocks covered with mosquito nets, the church traveled with Patrick, Gloria, and several of their team to show "JESUS" and "Magdalena" in Portuguese, share the gospel, and build a large community chicken coop.
"Their mission is to bring Jesus to the forgotten," says Tez. "I love seeing how partners use our tools in creative and strategic ways—going to places we can’t."
ROH's volunteers include doctors, nurses, dentists, social workers, lawyers, psychologists and lay ministers. Together they assist communities and remote indigenous Indians needing various levels of care.
Gloria explains, "We offer prayer, Bibles, counseling, discipling, medicine, food, clothing, school supplies, eyeglasses, and more. We even have a project for special-needs kids."
This year, ROH visited 11-year-old Maria*, who was diagnosed with a bacteria of the liver and lying in a vegetative state. With no cure, the doctors had sent her home to die.
The team prayed for her and a few months later they returned to find she was healed with medical tests confirming it. The doctors were surprised at the miracle. Later, the whole family accepted Jesus.
A few months ago ROH celebrated 16 years of ministry. To celebrate, Mountain Springs Church presented them with solar-powered film equipment so they can continue sharing "JESUS" everywhere they go. To learn more about partnering with ROH, go to RayOfHopeAmazon.org.