Ministries Making a Difference
Family Care Ministries, Assemblies of God, Trans World Radio, Samaritan’s Purse
WORLD Senior Editor Mindy Belz reported that Christian radio broadcaster Trans World Radio recently launched programming to Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya, home to 250,000 refugees from 39 countries. Belz visited the camp in 2001, which opened 30 years ago as a temporary shelter to African war victims—at that time, she found a “sprawling, overcrowded settlement of 77,000 people.”
Samaritan’s Purse deployed disaster responders Friday (March 19) alongside two Disaster Relief Units to Alabama after tornadoes and heavy winds last week damaged homes and left thousands without power. The tractor trailers carry tools and relief supplies to help families clear downed trees and debris, tarp roofs, and salvage personal belongings, while also reminding them of God’s love. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association also deployed Rapid Response Team chaplains to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, to provide spiritual and emotional support for storm victims.
One Assemblies of God missionary couple in Alaska, Pamela and Tracy Hodges, has adapted their ministry strategy during the COVID-19 pandemic to send Gospel-inspired messages to isolated children throughout the state. Pre-pandemic, the Hodges worked with a handful of churches a year to develop children’s ministries. Now, they produce and mail DVDs called Dandelion Kids that include Bible lessons for children, games, and memory verses directly to homes. Pre-pandemic, rural Alaskan communities struggled with substance abuse due in part to isolation and limited access to health care. For 10 months, students in Alaska were confined to remote learning, and in January began the process to return to in-person classrooms.
In partnership with the Church of the Nazarene MesoAmerica Region’s Family Care Ministries, missionaries Eliziel and Tammy Soto are reaching neighbors within their own apartment complex through virtual Zoom events. The first event included a message from family care counselors about working through domestic challenges highlighted by the pandemic, and the Sotos say some of their neighbors prayed to accept Christ. They also said the apartment complex contacted Regional Director Carlos Saenz to provide positive feedback on the event. According to the Ambassador of Panama, Latin America face some of the highest rates of violence against women, and the restrictions in place due to the pandemic increase the risk of domestic violence.
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