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Mennonite Men helps build churches from Brazil to Burkina Faso

4/27/2021 By: Chris Fretz

Mennonite Men helps build churches from Brazil to Burkina Faso

Mennonite Men are assisting five new congregations across three continents with over $107,400 through JoinHands, Mennonite Men's program to provide grants to help new congregations acquire their first church building. The board of directors of Mennonite Men approved grants at their board meeting on March 27 that will benefit Mennonite churches in Colorado, Virginia, Brazil, and Burkina Faso.

“We’re excited to help provide these new, growing congregations with the space they need to worship and carry out vital ministries,” said Steve Thomas, U.S. coordinator for Mennonite Men.

Mennonite Men worked with Mennonite Mission Network (MMN) to identify Samogohiri Mennonite Church in Burkina Faso and two congregations in Brazil, Igreja Evangélica Vida Nova and Igreja Evangélica Menonita em Lago Azul, as congregations that were working to construct a church building.

“In Brazil, the people of Lago Azul and Vida Nova are excited to receive the JoinHand grant. These funds will help a lot as they are working hard on their church buildings,” said Linda Shelly, MMN’s Regional Director for Latin America.

“The members of Samogohiri Mennonite Church dug the foundation for their building,” said Sharon Norton, co-director for Africa and Europe for MMN. “In order to keep their costs low, they’ve provided a lot of sweat equity, and got members of all ages involved.”

In addition to granting funds internationally, Mennonite Men is also assisting Eastside Church, a congregation of Virginia Mennonite Conference in Harrisonburg, Virginia, as well as Hmong Mennonite Church, a congregation of Mountain State Mennonite Conference in Westminster, Colorado made up of Hmong people, a Southeast Asian ethnic group.

JoinHands, which began in 1985 as Tenth Man, has distributed over $2 million helping churches in the United States, Canada, and in other countries to build or purchase their first building. Learn more at