The vision for Amazon Reach Ministries (ARM) began in 1988, when, I (Joe Novelo) became 3rd officer of the YWAM- Mercy Ship M/V Good Samaritan. It was then the ship made its 2nd voyage up the Amazon River. As we traveled I wondered who was ministering up these smaller (and sometimes un-named) waterways.
It was then that God began to birth the vision for ministering down these more remote communities. In 1988 I also met my wife (Edilma) who is a native of Brazil, and had experience ministering in the jungle and tribes. These interactions are the roots of what is today “Amazon Reach” YWAM Ships Brazil.
It was not until 2007 when YWAM approached us to lead a renewed move of GOD to minister in places that were only accessible by boat. Printed figures estimate there are 36,000 named communities only accessible by boat, with a significant number of unofficial communities also in spiritual need.
Today there are only 280 ministry boats working in an area almost the size of the continental USA.