Early last month, I wrote about John Allen Chau, the American Christian missionary who was killed in November while trying to preach about Jesus to the isolated people living on North Sentinel Island near India.
Now, another American Christian missionary is accused of risking the lives of an indigenous tribe in Brazil.
Steve Campbell is a missionary from the Greene Baptist Church in Maine. He is now under investigation by FUNAI, Brazil's National Indian Foundation, for venturing into the Hi-Merimã tribe's territory last month.
FUNAI is the Brazilian government body that establishes and carries out policies relating to indigenous peoples.
Campbell is alleged to have used the services of a local guide to find his way into the territory of the Hi Merimã according to Survival International.
Survival International, which advocates for the rights of indigenous tribes, has reported that Campbell could potentially be tried for "genocide."
There are several tribes in Brazil that live in isolation from the outside world. Due to their isolation, they are placed in extreme risk when exposed to diseases from outside their community.
The director of Survival International, Stephen Corry, said: "Fundamentalist Christian Americans must be stopped from this primitive urge to contact previously uncontacted tribes. It may lead to the martyrdom they seek, but always ends up killing tribespeople."
In October, Brazil elected far-right president Jair Bolsonaro, who has promised to end the protections granted to indigenous people and give over their land to commercial interests.
If Bolsonaro has his way, then these indigenous peoples will have a lot more to worry about than just Christian missionaries.
In the meantime, however, I hope that Corry's warning is heeded. Christian missionaries absolutely need to stop worming their way into these isolated communities. They do real damage when they ignore the laws protecting these tribal communities.