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Around the World: Showing love in a ruined land


Residents near Yogyakarta on the Indonesian island of Java survey the rubble left behind after a massive earthquake destroyed 105,000 homes and claimed more than 6,200 lives May 28. “Bits of wood that were once roofs, smashed windows, shattered jars and crumbled statues blanket the ground in Donhkelan Kidul village, just a few kilometers from Yogyakarta,” said Paul Renganathan, right, a minister in Chennai, India. Renganathan traveled to the affected region recently to distribute food, medicine and blankets donated by Churches of Christ. He assessed needs for future relief efforts by Healing Hands International, Nashville, Tenn. Texas-based Rapha International and other relief ministries also collected supplies to ship to the affected areas.
AUSTRALIA
MEROO
Fifty-four campers from churches in Toowoomba, Brisbane, Canberra, Albury, Melbourne and Sydney attended a “Fifty-n-Over Retreat” in Meroo, northwest of Sydney, said church member Stephen Randall. Allan Bottle, David Carr, John Gray, Warren Thorburn and Roy Courtney taught classes on “God’s place of acceptance.” The group worshipped with the nearby Kurrajong church.
BAHAMAS
ELEUTHERA

Bibles are among the supplies missionary David Caskey is stockpiling for the 2006 hurricane season. “After a hurricane, those who have lost all want water, food and a Bible — in that order,” Caskey said. The Longmire Road church in Conroe, Texas, and other churches have donated Bibles to the effort.
Caskey’s “Flying Preacher” ministry also will provide Bibles for Eleuthera’s annual youth Bible knowledge contest, coordinated by minister Lincoln Young and church member Ann Sands.
BRAZIL
CAMPINAS

Riots in the streets and at prisons in Brazil’s Sao Paulo state have subsided, but not before churches cancelled classes and church members spent several nervous nights in prayer, said missionary Allen Dutton Jr. Gang members — protesting the jailing of many of their leaders — torched buses and fired shots at police stations in Campinas, Dutton said.
Members have since resumed their work, including a recently launched Bible study with 10 women about 30 minutes from the church building, Dutton said.
BURKINA FASO
DANO

Maintaining a garden during Burkina Faso’s nine-month dry season isn’t easy, but it can mean the difference between life and death in the villages of this West African nation.
Dagara Mission recently sponsored an agricultural seminar in the town of Dano, teaching about 120 people how to farm effectively and store up food against droughts. Presenters also told attendees how to take advantage of vitamins found naturally in the moringa tree, said missionary Andy Johnson. Some people walked more than 25 miles to attend the seminar, funded by a U.S. supporter, Johnson said.
HAITI
RAVIN DEWOCH

Missionaries spent an afternoon “hut-knocking” in this small village in northern Haiti, inviting residents to attend a Bible study at a new church, launched in February. “We had standing room only for the adults and another group in the back for the kids,” said Bob Valerius, of the Haitian Christian Foundation, which oversees the Center for Biblical Training in Cap Haitien.
Ministers Luccen St. Louis and Jackie Pierrot, both graduates of the school, worked with Valerius in the village.
HONDURAS
SIGUATEPEQUE

In western Honduras, church members use the airwaves to preach sermons, advertise activities, read letters from listeners and even send birthday salutes, said minister Hector Ardila, a speaker for West Monroe, La.-based World Radio Gospel Broadcast. Church-sponsored programs air in Siguatepeque, Santa Cruz, Marcala, Comayagua and La Libertad.
Thanks in part to the radio programs, churches in the region have grown from 13 to 31 congregations in the past 10 years, with combined attendance of about 1,200, Ardila said recently.
NEW ZEALAND
OTUMOETAI

About 60 members of the Otumoetai church attended a family weekend camp at a campground in Papamoa. “Formed for God’s Family” was the theme. David Steel, a minister from Greerton, led two discussions on the topic.
THAILAND
CHIANG MAI

Fifteen church members from Chiang Mai traveled to a refugee camp one mile from Thailand’s border with Burma recently. The Burmese army is on an offensive to take over land occupied by the Karen and Shan hill tribes, said missionary David Allen. “There are more than 140,000 refugees living in temporary camps along one stretch of the Thai border. The living conditions are deplorable,” Allen said.
The church members spent most of their time working among the Karen refugees in a youth center. “Perhaps the biggest surprise was that these teens and kids were so kind and polite,” Allen said.

UKRAINE
ZITOMER

The Ukrainian government recently asked the Good News International Foundation, formerly Blagovest, to train teachers in public schools to teach Christian ethics, said Roger Thompson, the ministry’s president.
The ministry will host a mid-July training seminar in the city of Zitomer, west of Kiev. About 30 teachers are expected. “We will provide spiritual instruction to these teachers, who in turn will take the lessons we are printing to the students,” Thompson said. “We are providing children’s Bibles.”
July 1, 2006

  • Feedback
    I’m glad that the Lord is positively transforming the Dagara society with the Gospel. Stanislas HIEN, Dagara Bible Translation and Literacy Director.
    Hien Stanislas
    Evangelical Church of Pentecost.
    Ouagadougou, Ouagadougou
    Burkina Faso
    November, 17 2011

Filed under: International Staff Reports

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