Displaying items by tag: Praise
One billion people around the world have never heard God's word in the language they understand best. There are 6,000 unique languages on earth today, and 2,000 languages need translating so that unreached peoples can read the scriptures in their heart language. A decade ago, ten Bible translation agencies formed an alliance to end what they call ‘Bible poverty’, and organised the ‘I Want to Know’ campaign, giving people an opportunity to sponsor translation of one or more Bible verses. They hope everyone will have access to the Bible in their native tongue by 2033. Walkie, a native speaker of the Yupik language of Alaska, remembers the moment his mother understood the Bible's message for the first time. ‘Before she died, I was able to read her Psalm 139 in Yupik,’ he recalled. ‘And she said, “Oh! So that is what it means to us!”’
Praise God that the Institute for Victim Care and Assistance in Guatemala has been able to give holistic care to 4,600 survivors of violence in the past six months. 60% of those receiving the trauma-informed support, co-created by the Guatemalan government and IJM, were women and children. Praise God that survivors of violence can now receive free legal, psychological, and medical support in one place. Pray for God's strength for staff members at the Victim Institute as they continue to support survivors of violence.
Many churches and cathedrals which have remained closed throughout the recent lockdown are reopening in time for in-person worship during Holy Week and Easter - but online services and events remain at the heart of festivities. The stay-at-home rule has been replaced. Now up to two households of unlimited numbers, or up to six households of six people, can meet outdoors. The rector of Bath Abbey said, ‘We look forward eagerly to celebrating the life-renewing hope of Easter. It will be a great joy to celebrate Christ’s victory over death, as a church family back in the abbey once again - especially as we were unable to meet at Easter last year.’
The following is part of an email: ‘We give thanks to God for the way the five-year community-based rehabilitation (CBR) project is going in a mountainous district of Nepal. In its first year it has already reached hundreds of people with disabilities and their families, helping them access services, including livelihoods and physical rehabilitation, and is slowly helping to change attitudes in the community so they are included with kindness and respect. C is planning a home assignment after two years without a break! Pray that his successor as leader will enjoy the work, want to stay, and adapt quickly to living remotely.’
Father Tulak was preaching at a Catholic cathedral in Indonesia when it was attacked by suicide bombers on Palm Sunday. He said God protected church members and guards, who were only two metres away from the bombers when they exploded. ‘What happened in my church is a personal testimony for the world.’ Indonesia is one the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nations. Christians in the area are unfortunately used to these types of attacks, especially during Christian celebrations. Please pray for the injured church guards, who are in a police hospital for protection.
Praise God that the International Justice Mission (IJM) has signed its first collaborative agreement with the business sector in the Dominican Republic. IJM and Aerodom, the largest network of airports in the country, are joining forces to bring an end to sex trafficking. They are launching awareness campaigns in the air terminals, equipping their staff to recognise the signs of trafficking, and establish additional protocols to report these crimes to local authorities.
Indonesia has banned schools from forcing girls to wear Islamic hijab headscarves after the case of a Christian pupil pressured to cover up sparked outrage in the world’s most populous Muslim nation (90% of the population follows Islam). The move was applauded by rights activists, who say non-Muslim girls have been forced for years to wear a hijab in conservative parts of the country. State schools across the archipelago of nearly 270 million people will face sanctions if they fail to comply with the edict. Nadiem Makarim, the education minister, said that religious attire was an individual choice and schools cannot make it compulsory.
Lebanon has failed again to form a new government. President Michel Aoun wants help from other countries to overcome the deadlock. There is economic despair as political instability drives the currency down. As the currency dips further, the minimum wage sinks below that of third-world countries. It is unbelievable how little people are earning now. They are stuck in a vicious circle, with no end in sight. Each time the currency loses value, prices go up, and people can buy fewer daily essentials. A bottle of milk was 3,000 Lebanese lira, now it’s 8,000. But that same bottle of milk bought with US dollars is less than 50 cents. It becomes ¼ of the price for people with dollars, but the poor people pay over double the price. As the crisis worsens, people have nowhere to put their hope, so they are starting to put their hope in Christ.
More than a year has passed since the coronavirus pandemic was declared. World Vision, a leading evangelical interdenominational aid organisation, has partnered with tens of thousands of faith leaders and communities worldwide to reach 59 million people through relief and virus prevention efforts. As the world was shutting down, World Vision kept working, fulfilling the purpose God has bestowed on the organisation and its staff. ‘Covid-19 has been our largest domestic and international response that we’ve ever organised. It’s been a remarkable amount of work and just a wonderful opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus in this really, really challenging time’, said a World Vision representative.
In what has been called Myanmar's ‘Tiananmen moment’, Sister Ann Roza knelt in front of armed security forces to stop them firing on civilians. She was giving treatment at a clinic when groups of protesters passed by; then they were fired on and beaten by the police and military. ‘I was shocked and thought today is the day I will die. I was asking and begging them not to do it and was crying like a mad person, like a mother hen protecting the chicks. I thought it would be better that I die instead of lots of people. I was crying out loud. My throat was in pain. My intention was to help people escape and be free to protest and to stop the security forces. I was begging them. At that time I was not afraid.’