Allen and Barb Newton
The Newtons began their ministry in Portugal in the Azorean Islands in 1989. They spent two terms there before coming to Portugalís mainland in 1999. In 2002 they ordained their first national pastor, Mike, who was part of the fruit of their labors in the Azores. Mike later married the Newtons' daughter, Aura, and currently serves as pastor of the church of Albufeira. Allen and Barb are now living in Castelo Branco (White Castle), farther north of Albufeira. With the help of Mike and Aura and their church, the Newtons hope to see several churches started in this area which has never had a Baptist church.
Their son, Scott, and his wife, Melissa, are preparing for their future missions work in South Africa. Their other son, Chris, is now out of the Air Force and has been picked up by Raytheon Corporation as a contractor to the Air Force. He is doing very well in the job and seems to really like it.
Their camp facility continues to progress and they have been able to use it for several winter teen retreats. They have announced the 2010 calendar of events at the Mount of Olives (their camp facility) which will include two national retreats, youth camp, family camp, college and career camp, snow camp, harvest camp, and two American groups scheduled for missions trips so far.
Portugal's climate is quite varied. From November to March there is rainy, cooler weather, with temperatures ranging from 20 degrees to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Warmer weather begins in April and by the end of May it is usually in the 80ís. Summer is hot and dry during the daytime. There is usually no rain from June to October.
The predominant religion is Roman Catholicism (94%). Most people are not practicing, but still consider themselves dedicated to "their church." The Newtons write, "We have all of the big cults here, and even some homegrown ones."