Amarildo (AJ) is originally from Brazil. He was born and raised in a Christian family and has Presbyterian roots. He and his wife Laura are high school sweethearts. They have been together for thirteen years and married for seven years. By God’s grace, they are parents to one beautiful daughter, Serena.
AJ and Laura served in a campus ministry in Brazil affiliated with IFES (International Fellowship of Evangelical Students). Through that ministry, he was connected to an ISI local group at Northern Virginia Community College, where he studied from 2014-2015. During his time as an international student at NOVA and Howard University (Washington, DC), he developed his undergraduate engineering skills but always had a heart for missions. He participated in several ISI staff trainings, conferences, and events as a student leader.
After moving back to Brazil, AJ worked for 5 years as a Building Inspector for the Brazilian Government while his wife worked as a Lawyer. They were settled, had a church, a house, and family around. However, something was missing inside their hearts. They wondered if the Lord had a calling in their lives for full-time ministry.
After a failed plan to move to Canada due to COVID, they were invited to take a class on missions called “Perspectives”. It was a transformative experience, as they felt the Holy Spirit working in their hearts and they were certain that God had a call for them into full-time ministry. They abandoned everything and decided to take a step of faith!
AJ now serves as a full-time missionary with his wife Laura, and he is a Master of Divinity candidate at Denver Seminary. He is a member of Cornerstone Free Evangelical Church in Annandale, VA, where he serves as a ministry leader to international students and has also served as a Pastoral Intern.
Having been an international student himself, AJ relates to the struggles and cultural challenges that international students face. He is excited to now serve in the ministry where he was once a student and to have the opportunity to pay it forward.
AJ has a burning heart for the lost and for reaching out to international students in Northern Virginia by building bridges of love!