Teachers in Haiti have refused to return to classrooms, even taking to the streets to protest a lack of pay and safe working conditions. This was already a problem and the pandemic made it worse. Haiti runs in cycles. Their government gets money. Sometimes it doles it out and sometimes it doesn’t. When it doesn’t, police work for months without payment. Teachers can work for the entire school year without payment. Theft has become an expected part of the culture. Haiti with Love has been sharing the Gospel with parents who bring in their children for burn treatment. People are very open to listening when they realise that the reason people are helping their babies is the love of Christ. They ask, ‘Who is this Christ who provides all of this help? Tell me about him.’ Pray for the Burn Clinic, and also for Pilgrim House which provides homes for homeless people.
Perú's parliament will impeach President Vizcarra for blocking an investigation into mis-use of public funds. He swept into power with an anti-corruption agenda. He denies ‘moral incapacity‘, despite audio recordings of him misusing funds. They have provoked a public outcry in pandemic-stricken Perú which now has the highest Covid death rate per capita in the world. Perú's economy is also struggling to recover from the three-month shutdown of the mining sector due to coronavirus. Pray for lawmakers to ensure corruption is replaced with honest reliable leadership. Pray for wise business transactions and a speedy economic recovery for commerce and industry that has seen quarterly GDP plummet by over 40%. Pray for successful strategies to halt the spread of coronavirus. Meanwhile missionaries are working to reach the thousands of Chinese migrants now settling in Peru: pray for believers from their ministry (see).
Black Lives Matter organiser Melina Abdullah called out the names of blacks killed by police and summoned the spirits of the dead by pouring out a drink offering on the pavement at a Los Angeles June march. ‘Our power comes not only from the people here but from the spirits that we cannot see’, said Abdullah, as reported by the Los Angeles Times. ‘When we say their name, we invoke their presence.’ In the 1960s, the leaders of Civil Rights movements were Christians. Today’s BLM leaders are completely different. Pray for the US church to weigh its response to racism and police brutality while filtering a movement whose values are diametrically opposed to the Bible’s. It blends African and indigenous cultures’ spiritual practices ,and beliefs, ancestor worship; chanting rituals, dancing, and summoning deities. This unsavoury underpinning has caused a parallel movement called One Race to be birthed, welcoming all races and based on prayer, praise, preaching, and education.
Hundreds of people near the Florida-Alabama border were being rescued from floodwaters brought on by Hurricane Sally on 16 September. Authorities fear many more could be in danger in the coming days. ‘We had four months of rain in four hours’, said the Pensacola fire department. Sally has weakened since making landfall as a Category 2 hurricane, but the devastation was visible across Southern states by nightfall. Sally continues to slowly move northwest causing torrential rain over eastern Alabama and western Georgia. Pensacola and parts of Florida and Alabama are submerged, with rivers approaching dangerous levels. Numerous counties are under curfews to keep residents safe. A commissioner in Florida said they are still in evacuation and lifesaving recovery missions, as historic and catastrophic flooding threatens more communities. There could be thousands of evacuations. Pray for the families and businesses in areas looking like war zones.
Year after year, Uttar Pradesh is identified as the state where most Christian Indians are persecuted. 86 of the 366 violent attacks on Christians recorded in 2019 took place in Uttar Pradesh, and 2020 has seen little improvement. While the pandemic probably reduced the rate of persecution, recent reports indicate the number of attacks on Christians is increasing as India emerges from lockdown. ‘I would have been killed if God hadn’t been with me,’ Pastor Alok Tomar recently told International Christian Concern. ‘I was worried that I would not survive as the torture was so intense. Different ones took turns as I was beaten with lashes from the police belt.’ Pastor Tomar was telephoned and told to report to the police station immediately. ‘I felt safe because I was going to the police station.’ He was accused of forced religious conversions and kept in custody and tortured for three days by the police. It was another four days before he was given bail.
Kenya’s locust problem hasn’t gone away. In fact, Kenyans could see a third generation of the insects destroy vegetation across the country. This is the worst locust outbreak for the region in 70 years. Locusts have already caused a great deal of destruction in Kenya and surrounding countries this year. Favourable weather conditions could contribute to a return of the swarm. The last one found a route through the Rift Valley, the breadbasket of Kenya. They devastated everything that was green as they moved; they also left eggs to hatch later.
A new charge against Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, the British-Iranian woman jailed in Iran, is "a new stage in a long-running political game", her husband Richard has claimed. "She is clearly being held as a bargaining chip," Mr Ratcliffe said. Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe is nearing the end of her sentence for spying charges, which she denies. But on Tuesday, she was told she would face a new trial. The Foreign Office said British officials will try to attend the trial. Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe was arrested in Tehran in April 2016. She had been visiting her parents with her young British-born daughter, Gabriella, who is now six. The dual national was sentenced to five years in prison over allegations of plotting against the Iranian government - although no official charges have ever been made public. Gabriella has now returned to the UK. Mr Ratcliffe said his wife and other dual nationals are being held hostage because Iran wants the UK to pay a decades-old debt (£400m) over an arms deal that was never fulfilled.
Antarctica’s ‘Thwaites Glacier’ which is a thousand miles from the nearest research base, has been investigated by scientists from the British Antarctic Survey. The glacier is melting rapidly due to warmer water entering the glacier via huge oceanic channels 600 meters below the surface. This glacier, roughly the size of Great Britain, already accounts for 4 per cent of world sea level rise each year. The accelerating meltdown of the most vulnerable glacier in Antarctica would add over 25 inches to global sea levels - inundating coastal areas and cities such as London and New York.