Exactly one year from today, a team of people from all over the world will descend on Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for a very special purpose—to fulfill the Great Commission, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19). You see, people from an estimated 207 countries will be gathering in Rio to celebrate the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, so it’s the perfect opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with people from “all the nations”! And that’s just what this team is going to do!
The Olympics outreach team will be lead by Dr. David Crandall, the former director of AiG Worldwide and a “retired” (I use that term loosely!) missionary and pastor with a heart for reaching the lost, and his lovely wife Diana. They’ve already led teams to the Games in Atlanta, Georgia; Sydney, Australia; Athens, Greece; Vancouver, Canada; and London, England. Around 100 to 110 people will be on the team, and already 52 have registered a year in advance!
The team members will be on the streets in small groups from August 8-17, 2016, distributing a gospel booklet entitled “The 7th Wonder” and engaging in Christ-centered conversations. These booklets are unique because they begin by presenting interesting facts about the famous Christ the Redeemer statue that overlooks Rio and then use that statue and the number 7 as a springboard to transition into the 7C’s of history(that the Creation Museum is based on) and the 7 steps of the gospel message. These excellent witnessing booklets will be translated into 10 languages in order to reach as many people from as many places as possible. At previous Games, dedicated team members, who displayed a heart for reaching the lost, have been able to distribute tens of thousands of booklets over the time they are there.
The team will be staying at a Christian camp in the jungles of Brazil, and busing into Rio every day to share the gospel. They will even get a chance to sample some special Brazilian dishes, such as the famous meat skewers at Brazilian restaurants. Each team member will have one day off to tour Rio, perhaps to attend an Olympic event or visit the Christ the Redeemer statue.
Two of the young ladies that will be part of the team heading to Rio next year are Taylor Pool, an AiG staff member, working with the content team, and Avery Foley, a Canadian who frequently writes for AiG. Avery has already been to two Games: Vancouver and London. This is what she has to say about these Olympics trips,
“There’s nothing quite like the atmosphere surrounding the Olympics—you can almost feel the excitement and anticipation in the air. And there’s nothing like the excitement of over 100 people gathered together to tell people about the most precious treasure of all, Jesus Christ. It’s an excitement you won’t soon forget. I treasure the memories I made and the people I met in Vancouver and London.
On my first Olympics trip I was barely 16, and God used it to teach me so much. It was incredible to see God actively answer prayer and give us the courage to share His message with others. The nightly times of worship and testimonies about what God had done during the day were certainly highlights. People regularly shared stories of helping to lead people to Christ right on the street. This is not a trip that you want to miss!”
I have also had the privilege of participating in these exciting outreaches twice: Vancouver (2010) and London (2012). And I can tell you that you will be changed by the experience. If you have a passion for sharing the gospel with people from all nations, or if you speak another language, then this trip is for you. There are still spots left but they are filling quickly, so you will want to register for this trip of a lifetime soon. You can learn more about this exciting outreach (and register) here. You can also click and download the images included in this post for sharing on social media.
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,