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Netflix alternative, Samaritan’s Purse in Niger, Back-to-School in Kenya

Editor’s note:  Beginning with the article that follows, MinistryWatch will begin a new weekly feature, “Ministries Making A Difference.”  This column will feature news briefs of Christian organizations making a positive difference in the world.  If you have a suggestion for this column, including ministry news items, please email us at:  info@ministrywatch.com

Netflix alternative. The creators of the Christian documentary “American Gospel” are taking on the big dogs of the streaming world by launching their own product: AGTV. The streaming service launched in late November and includes a variety of curated and original content, including roundtable discussion on cultural topics, the two American Gospel films, a series titled “Freedom” by Costi Hinn for people coming out of bad theological backgrounds, and a reality show following the lives of a pastor and the critical illnesses his family faces. AGTV will also host content from Ligonier Ministries, Red Grace Media, Living Waters, and others. AGTV is available on most devices, including Apple TV, ROKU, and fireTV.

Why now? The creators of AGTV removed their original documentary American Gospel from Netflix in November and said they wanted to create their own streaming service to “guard and proclaim the biblical gospel of Christ crucified, and to provide Christians and their local churches with resources to refute the errors of the ‘American Gospel.’”

Back to school. With in-person school classes in Kenya slated to reopen in January, Kenya Hope is working to help ease the economic load by providing children with masks, hand sanitizer, and hand washing stations. There have been few cases of COVID-19 in rural Kenya, but the financial toll of business closures has made life difficult for many families, says Joy Mueller of Kenya Hope. Schools, also, are feeling the strain with growing restrictions and little financial assistance. Providing health and safety resources to the school will increase their chance of remaining open.

Why not virtual? Without in-person classes, most students in Africa don’t have access to schooling—around 80 percent of African children don’t have access to the internet, according to Mission Network News. Closed schools may also compound other issues, such as early marriages for girls.

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Hope in the Sahel. Samaritan’s Purse has partnered with the Niger Ministry of Health and local leaders in Niger to build and resource three integrated health centers for villagers across the region. Samaritan’s Purse provided construction materials and medical equipment, including beds to labor and deliveries. Prior to that, the crude village “health hut” provided little refuge for women giving birth. One woman described giving birth on the floor on a plastic bag. “When our water pump broke down, there was no water to wash the plastic bag,” she said. One of the completed health centers has the “capacity to care for more than 16,000 people across 12 villages,” Samaritan’s Purse said. 

Where is Niger? Niger is located in West Africa surrounded by countries such as Algeria, Libya, and Nigeria. It is considered among the poorest countries in the world. Samaritan’s Purse has said that more than 50 percent lack access to quality healthcare, and few know of the saving hope of Christ—the population is more than 97 percent Muslim.

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Christina Darnell

Christina Darnell is a freelance writer who has contributed to WORLD, The Charlotte Observer, and other publications.

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