Pause with Scripture
Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God – children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.John 1:12–13 (NIV)
Ecuador: a home for the Orchid Project
The Orchid Project, led by mission partner Sharon Wilcox and serving people with disabilities, may need to move its base, as the church building which currently houses it may be sold. Please pray for the right permanent home so that the project can begin in-person work once again in October. Praise God that an Ecuadorean couple from Sharon’s church are being sent out in mission to an Amazonian area, and pray for them as they transition to this new ministry.
Ecuador: misery caused by drugs trade
Recent fighting between rival gangs in the Litoral prison has left at least 116 dead. Gang violence has massively increased as drug cartels fight for control of lucrative drug trafficking routes. Please pray for peace, for the families of those killed and for an end to the drugs trade.
Brazil: new leadership at ReVive
Praise God for the transition to local Brazilian leadership at ReVive following Andy and Rose Roberts’ return to the UK. Please continue to pray for the team, for the children at ReVive and for the fostering service in the region, which is close to being able to start. Pray for those continuing to work to enable that service to become a reality, including Evaldo Rodrigues. Praise God that Rosie and Stu Bayford have recently been able to return to Brazil to continue to serve through ReVive and pray for them in this new phase of service as they minister in the local communities.
South Sudan: peace and security
On 21 October – International Peace Day – both the Ecumenical Network on South Sudan and the South Sudan Council of Churches (SSCC) issued statements setting out the present situation and its problems, and calling for peace and accountability in the country. Both urge the international community to “monitor and engage in the peace process and responsibility to protect”. The SSCC statement ends, “God bless South Sudan with sustainable peace”. Let that be our prayer too.
South Sudan: returned safely
Give thanks that mission partner Lynn Treneary has returned safely to Maridi from the UK. She says: “I give thanks to God for an exceptionally smooth journey to Juba and then on to Maridi. Please thank everyone for their prayers. I’m very happy to be back amongst our lovely brothers and sisters in Maridi.”
The government has recently resisted an attempted coup by military elements dissatisfied with their performance – but internationally they are considered to be doing well. They are also fending off attacks by Ethiopian forces in a border area recently reclaimed from Ethiopia. Pray for the government’s continued progress towards open and democratic government and economic well-being, and for the defeat of those who would undermine them
Uganda: schools still closed
Mission associates Ian and Shelagh Baird-Smith ask for prayer for friends and colleagues in Lira, Uganda: “Uganda Christian Institute School of Nursing and Midwifery is now partially open for those students sitting national exams, but all the other classes are still closed. Keframa High School has been closed since March last year, though a few students were able to sit exams early this year. Both school and college are struggling to maintain contact with students and find the money to pay staff, many of whom have been on much-reduced salaries since the lockdown started.” Please pray for a way forward for all those who are falling further and further behind in their education; for schools to re-open and for students to be excited about continuing their education despite setbacks caused by the pandemic.
Philippines: Jigsaw Ministries
Mission partner Tim Lee asks for prayer for God to continue to empower, enable and guide Jigsaw Ministries as they share God’s love with children and families in need in Manila. Pray for Jigsaw’s new director, Jeanette Sotto, for wisdom and strength for her as she undertakes this challenging role during these difficult times. Pray too for Tim, Kate and their children as they settle into life in the UK.
Europe, Middle East and North Africa
UK: annual memorial walk
Mission partner Ruth Radley writes that Birmingham Children’s Hospital (where she is part of the multi-faith chaplaincy team) recently held their annual memorial walk and picnic, an opportunity for bereaved families to come together and remember the children they have lost. Praise God that easing of restrictions meant they were able to do a bit more than last year. Ruth writes, “The day itself was full of a lot of joy as well as some sad moments and being able to once again sit with families and chat as we did the activities was so great. We are so glad that we were able to do this day and know so much that it is a really important date on the calendars of many of our families.”