Just a few years ago, Brazil’s Daniel Siquiera had what many would consider the perfect life. He had a beautiful young family, he was active in his church, and his career was on an uphill trajectory as an engineer for one of the largest mining corporations in the world. As he grew in his career, he also matured in his faith and began actively discipling the youth in his church. Before long, a tension began to develop.
In addition to his growing passion for youth ministry, Daniel began to see portions of the Brazilian mining industry that conflicted with his deeply-held values.
“Brazil is a country very rich in mineral resources, and the mining market is very strong in our nation. Unfortunately, due to the size of the county, some poor and remote areas still have unresolved problems. In those places, people live for gold mining, a totally manual and dangerous activity. When a quantity is found in a given location, some take advantage of vulnerable people, and slavery processes take place.”
So Daniel took a bold step of faith. He left his career as an engineer to pursue full-time youth ministry. And he soon realized that God had used his work in the corporate world to equip him for this new post.
“I had been involved in leading small groups for many years. This generated a passion in my heart for the work of God. I believe that this is one of the keys to working with young people, we have to lead them and call them to become involved. Often as pastors we have our heads only in the church’s world and we do not understand what is happening in the life of this generation. This makes our preaching unconnected with the generation we want to reach. At this point I see that my professional experience helps me to connect, because I know what they dream, think, and live on a daily basis.”
Two years ago, Daniel attended the Haggai Leader Experience (HLE), and that would fuel the amazing impact he has made in his community since the start of the pandemic.
Daniel attended the Haggai Leader Experience in May 2019
“I attended the HLE Seminar in May 2019. As a young pastor, with a background in business, the invitation sounded really interesting to me, especially the opportunity to connect with different people from 31 countries. The main change I had was the clarification about the main goal for us Christians: making disciples. I was providing relief to people, but not making disciples.”
In 2020, when COVID-19 ravaged Brazil, Daniel used the lessons he learned at HLE to help develop a dynamic presentation of the Gospel called “Global Virus Vaccine.” Using the framework of the country’s pandemic crisis, it presents the Gospel as a source of hope and healing greater than anything the world can offer. Using digital tools, the campaign reached more than 14,000 Brazilians, and more than 4,000 committed their lives to Christ as a result.
“During crises we need to be leaders with courage and flexibility, as innovators and who know their mission. This year I clearly realized how my training at Haggai helped me in this.”