Show and Tell Fund - Coronavirus Update
Thank you for all your help for those affected in China. Our partners are moving forward and making quite an impact on communities throughout the country. The following have so far been distributed: 19,300 masks, 100 bottles of alcohol, 300 bottles of hand sanitiser and 160 goggles.
A total of more than 8,700 volunteers in Sichuan, Jiangsu, Gansu, Anhui and other places are involved and so we are grateful for your prayers this week as they continue their work at grassroots level in China.
Show and Tell Fund - Coronavirus
There are now many thousands of confirmed cases, almost all of which are in China. As a response, the BBC reports that countries around the world have closed their borders to arrivals from China, as officials work to control the rapid spread of the coronavirus. Among them are the US and Australia as well as Russia, Japan, Pakistan and Italy.
The isolation continues within China too. The entire province of Hubei has been placed in ‘lock-down’, effectively isolating millions, with Wuhan alone home to 11 million people. In little over a week under quarantine, Wuhan has experienced food shortages, an overwhelming number of patients, and evacuation of foreigners in the city. In addition, there has been 'rationing of facemask packs and sanitiser' to areas where it is most needed. For many, the fear is very real.
Chinese partners are responding with compassion and care for those in need - and it’s not the first time they have served in this way.
Several years ago, some local church members began to be trained to meet humanitarian need within their own communities. They are often among the first responders to China’s natural disasters and a great way to engage in society. Their work is welcomed but they are not supplied with all the resources they need.
You can imagine the great connections that have been established. These practical opportunities build relationships and open doors for ongoing gospel witness.
First and foremost, we would love you to pray. One pastor writes ‘The possibility that members could contract the illness has all become a great area of struggle. It is readily apparent that we are facing a test of our faith. Do not be concerned with my welfare, nor be agitated or fearful, but pray in the name of Jesus.’ With every region of the country now affected, ask the Lord for a speedy solution. Pray for those who are fearful. May they be brought to peace in Christ.
If you would like to give to our 'Show and Tell Fund, then visit our Give page. Our partners are able to help where most needed. They are asking for a million protective facemarks and 100,000 bottles of disinfectant to freely distribute. (As a guide, £30 provides around 20 bottles of disinfectant plus 100 facemasks.)
We will continue to provide reports as we receive them.
(16/1/20) Good news from Nepal. Special prayer has been requested for upcoming opportunities. Local evangelist, Bishnu, writes 'Greetings from the mountains! Please pray for our next All Nepal Pastors' Conference. We are meeting for three days starting next Monday. Many pastors are already in travels from the mountains. They should arrive by Sunday evening. We covet your prayers for safe travels of our brothers and for fruitful ministry. Nepal’s greatest need now is gospel witness and sound teaching in the churches.
'I’m leading a discipleship course now with a Brother who has been in the church for 18 years but didn't not know the true Gospel! Please keep praying for our time together with all these pastors and leaders next week.'
On the Move Fund
(8/12/19) The flows of refugees into Greece continues. Many camps are overcrowded. We are privileged to help two local ministries with care for some who often have to choose between food or shelter. Our partners have written this month to say 'Thank you for your prayers for our medical outreaches the last two weeks of November. Together with doctors and nurses from the Netherlands, Germany and Scotland we were able to organise five full days of medical appointments, seeing over 200 refugees. We gave advice, prescribed medications, performed several minor procedures, and discovered which patients need to be referred on to a specialist.
As mentioned in our previous letters, some new arrivals to Greece no longer receive the same levels of government help, including medical care. Please pray for us as we begin a women’s group in the New Year as part of our efforts to help women recovering from abuse and assault.
We love to get God's Word into the hands of more people in ways they can understand. Some have already been gratefully received with one friend commenting 'Right now, I am reading the New Testament. I have never read even a page of the Bible in my lifetime. I think this is the best Good News of any book I have ever read.'
If you are looking for a great Alternative Christmas Gift this year, then why not send God's Word on behalf of someone else? It costs just £2 to print and place a New Testament. We have sent some already but there is plenty of hunger for more!
Or maybe you or your church would simply like to help. Let us know how many copies you want to send and we'll take care of the rest. You can give via our Giving page or by post. If you are giving on behalf of someone else, do email us at email@example.com with quantities required so that we can send a postcard with ways to pray and a thank you letter.
Closing date is December 16th 2019.
Love Europe Fund
Thank you for your help in providing gospel tracts for distribution at last month's Montreux Jazz Festival
Our partners commented 'The leaflet "Who said it?" that you kindly paid for has been without doubt the most successful gospel leaflet in terms of interest and response that I have ever used. We had two big pop-up posters advertising it. For the first time in my experience people actually came and asked for a copy. It was not uncommon to have three or four people standing reading it by the kiosk. We have so far given away over 2,500 in French and English and in almost every case there would have been a conversation of some kind. We are now thinking of translating it into several other languages for next year.'
Love Europe Fund
(18/6/19) Day 11 of our new 30 Day Prayer for Missions Vol. 2 looks at cross-cultural evangelistic opportunities in Switzerland. Montreux, on Lake Geneva’s eastern tip, is where many of the world’s languages can be heard in the same place and at the same time.
Take a walk along the promenade in Montreux and any number of languages can be heard. The annual Montreux Jazz Festival attracts 250,000 tourists. That’s ten times the population of the town. The Easter Polymanga Festival attracts 40,000 young people. Christmas markets draw thousands more. Many come from unreached peoples who might never otherwise hear the gospel. The lakefront promenade is filled with events, cafes and stalls, including one bookstore making Bibles available in 40 languages.
Over the Easter weekend, up to 25,000 people walked past the bookstore each day. More than 100 Bibles were given away in over 20 languages, 300 children received John 3:16 balloons and more than 1,000 gospel tracts were distributed to those specifically requesting them.
Thank you for enabling us to fund tracts for this ministry. Let’s be praying for the 100 people who stopped and engaged in serious gospel conversations at Easter and the 5,000 who will receive leaflets during the Jazz Festival at the end of this month. What a wonderful opportunity to make Jesus known across diverse cultures!
(2/5/19) Our second volume of 30 Days of Prayer for Missions is now available. Request your copy from the office. It's a great way to engage daily in prayer for the world - 30 countries, 30 prayers and 30 bible readings.
Volume 2 is also available as a pdf for mobiles and tablets. Download now.
Coming soon! Keep an eye out for some superb missions resources for children.
(9/3/19) Good news from South America where the Quechua Radio station continues its ministry of Bible teaching into remote areas. Many are non-literate and attending churches where few have trained leaders. Helping church leaders and congregations better understand the Bible is a key goal. The work of making the radio station increasingly locally-funded is an enormous challenge. Nevertheless, we are thrilled to hear of growing interest from old and young Quechua speakers. One fourteen year old girl saved for three months to bring in her gift of £3 to radio station.
(11/1/19) We have started the year on a high with the completion of a new video on missions. We hope it keeps the focus exactly where it needs to be - on Jesus! You can watch it here Until The Whole World Hears
We are also working hard on two written resources that we hope to have ready for print soon. The first is a set of four Bible studies simply entitled To All Nations These are great for personal use or for small groups or perhaps even as sermon outlines, in presenting the Bible's big message of mission.
Then too we are working on the 2nd Edition of our 30 Days of Prayer for the World. Lots in the pipeline so keep your eyes open for materials to help you and your church.
(10/12/18) Our partner in the Himalayas sends regular news. His latest road trip takes him up to the roof of the world. We thought his latest would be a helpful pointer for prayer for you. He writes "We left yesterday right after church for the far west. We just arrived and will be serving the Lord for the next two days. We will be back home on Thursday. Please pray that the Lord gives us fruitful ministry and a safe trip back. We have a lot of literature to give out. Please pray that the Lord would open the eyes of the people for the gospel but close them for the wickedness.
To Him be the glory. Glory to the Maker of the mountains!
(15/10/18) We have received news of ongoing work in the Andes region where teams are distributing radios in rural communities. The radios are a life-line for many who are isolated. They also allow easy access to Christian teaching.
One report just received comments "The days have been extremely beautiful, temperature wise, however we have had 3 days in the mountains with over cast skies, rain, and very heavy fog which made driving more than difficult on the mountain roads. Our first day journey lasted about 12 hours and then a second day of approximately 9 hours more to get to the villages. The Lord provided accommodation for us in a medical clinic where we were able to settle into for our time there. This unique community located high in the mountains is where we met our co-worker, Juan Ramos. Juan was likely the first believer here a few years ago and soon his family were all believers and the incredible change in their lives was the light that began to change the darkness controlling the lives of many others. The Ramos family donated some property to build a small building where they could meet to worship God. What an experience it was on Sunday morning to visit with them, worship with them and enjoy a lunch of beans, corn, potatoes, goat/sheep meat and fried eggs. The Lord is opening doors very wide for the future of the Gospel as it goes forth from this little light house on the mountain side.
The afternoon before, we had handed out Bible radios across the valley, about a 4 hour drive away and upon returning in late afternoon we prepared to hand out more Bible radios this time in the midst of a down pour of cool mountain rain… a little change from our original plans, and then we were endeared with a typical supper meal of the area which consisted of a thick creamy soup with several potatoes along with a flattened guinea pig on top. Quite an experience to say the least, but everyone was willing to try it."
Thank you for praying.
(27/7/18) Summer activities in Mongolia have continued at a pace. Our partners have certainly been busy! More than 1,500 Mongolians attended classes offered by workers to help develop godly characters in a difficult society.
There was training provided too to some 60+ pastors, 2 medical trips to Overkhangai province as well as three missionary trips outside Mongolia to make Christ known elsewhere.
Give praise to the Lord for close to 200 people who gave their lives to Christ over the summer outreach events.
(7/6/18) Our Himalayan partners are hard at work. We are deeply grateful for the help provided to this and other ministries geared to the sharing of Jesus in grassroots communities around the world. Thank you.
They write: There is a window of few days and we would like to grab the opportunity to preach the Gospel in a village in the southeastern part of the country. There are more than 300 houses and no church in the village.
One of our pastor friends has been praying to start a church there and now we go and help them with mass evangelism. Please pray for our efforts to reach them for the Lord. The Lord has also provided 320 mosquito nets to give each to a house. They are very prone to fatal diseases because of the mosquitoes this summer. Please pray for the open air preaching and literature distribution. We will give out the Gospel of John along with other literature.
Near to where we are going, a Hindu leader was shot at night by an unknown group and they are trying to blame Christians and persecute them. We are going to the same area and would like to request you pray for boldness in the preaching and the Lord’s intervention in this effort to reach a big group of His creation. We really appreciate your intercession.
(17/5/18) We have been praying much for Andrew, who, after 20+ years of ministry in Turkey, has now been in prison there since 2016. His next trial date is in July. This report reflects events from the most recent court appearance where his pastor from the US was able also to be in court. Let's keep praying.
Sad, angry, and resolute.
These are my states of mind as I wake after Andrew Brunson’s trial. After 10 hours in court, I am deeply saddened that the judge refused to allow Andrew’s request to return home and finish the trial under some form of house arrest.
I’m sad at having to watch Norine be brave yet again for her husband and community. She is like Mary pouring her treasure out at Jesus’ feet. It’s her costly treasure of time, lost time with husband and children, her father’s death, and so much more. I’m also sad for the Turkish people and the blatant miscarriage of justice. This bleeds into my anger.
The judge allowed the most ludicrous witnesses to testify against Andrew. One young man, who had angrily left their church years ago, wanted to return to the church but was denied membership because he was such a troublemaker. He refused to repent. On the stand, this man admitted to creating a fake Facebook page in Andrew’s name and posting pro-terrorist items on it. The judge looked passed this and validated this man’s testimony of seeing terrorist flags in Andrew’s church. It was a total lie, but the judge said it carried weight.
The judge not only led witnesses with his questions, but also linked all the witnesses at the end in an effort to maintain the case against Andrew. The most angering blow was at the end when the judge decimated Andrew’s witness defence list saying that most of his witnesses were also “suspects” and, therefore, could not testify on Andrew’s behalf. This, in effect, ties the hands of Andrew’s defence.
So, what to do with unresolved sadness and justified anger? This morning I am reflecting on 1 Peter 2:23—“When he was reviled he did not revile in return, when he suffered (unjustly) he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to Him who judges justly.” Also, Psalm 30:5— “Weeping endures for the night but joy comes in the morning.” And Romans 12:12—“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation and constant in prayer.”
God did answer many prayers. Andrew spoke with clarity, authority, and boldness in the Lord as he refuted many, many lies spoken against him. Norine remained strong and alert. I had asked the Lord to be able to get into the courtroom. We got in. I asked to be a visible encouragement to Andrew and to have five minutes to visit with him. Everyone assured me that it would be impossible. No clergy of any faith have visited prisoners during this state of emergency in Turkey. BUT…then there was a technical difficulty with the big screens and while all were distracted, Andrew turned around in his seat and looked back at us as we sat in the back of the court. Norine said that this was not allowed. But with the judges distracted with the screen, Andrew was able to lock eyes with Norine and me and Sam and several others. I was able to communicate love, prayers, and blessings. It was a sacred and joy-filled moment from the Lord. We all wept. This technological difficulty lasted five minutes. It happened again later so we got another opportunity for eye–to-eye, loving contact. When Andrew was escorted out of the courtroom I moved to a place closer to his exit door and yelled out, “We love you, brother. We will never forget you. The whole church is praying for you back home.”
Joy, sorrow, anger, and resolution.
I remain resolute in standing with and praying for Andrew. I know you do as well. Hebrews 13:5 says, “Remember those in prison as though with them.” So we must keep praying. God is working something much larger than we can see or understand right now.
Thank you for praying. This is the hard work God has for us. Romans 15:30 says, “I appeal to you brothers and sisters by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit to strive together with me in your prayers to God on my behalf, that I may be delivered.”
(04/04/18) Grassroots Bible training is always important and especially so in areas where access is limited to church, Christian fellowship, online resources or formal Bible training programmes.
We want to see Christian workers emerging who are well-equipped for ministry among their own indigenous people. Rather than gathering lay workers in a central, formal training school, Platform 67's partners regularly visit lay-leaders in their home communities, often in rural areas. Travel is extensive but the Bible training is deeply appreciated. It has been our privilege to help this work. Thank you for making this happen.
Love Europe Fund
(1/3/18) Our partners in Hungary have sent special greetings and expressed their deep appreciation for the digital Bibles received from Platform 67. One beneficiary, a blind lady by the name of Eva, commented “I was listening to the Bible during the dialysis session and was thinking that I must have been disturbing the other patients. I wanted to plug in the headset but the others around me said, ‘Oh no, we want to listen too!’”
Thank you for making this possible.
Intercession - 30 Days
(5/2/18) One of our really big goals is to help more people pray. It is the best way for everyone to engage in missionary work. We have worked hard on the way we write prayer material and the frequency with which it is distributed. We want to make prayer news for the least-reached nations of the world more simple, accessible and frequent. Over the course of last year, we sent some 25,000 Just Pray! emails, helping people intercede in an informed and timely way for everywhere from Saudi Arabia to the Himalayas, and to Iceland. Thank you for your involvement.
This month we will be making available our 30 Days of Missions booklet. Look out for news from 30 different areas of the world, 30 ways to pray into unreached areas plus 30 sets of Bible readings to keep God's big purposes up front and central. Get in touch to request your copy.
(15/1/18) Great to be able to send gospel tracts in minority languages to Nepal. Our Nepali partner travels far and wide preaching the Good News wherever he goes as well as training new evangelists. On his recent travels, he visited Maithili speakers who need to hear about Jesus. Perhaps you could pray for indigenous evangelists in their efforts to share the Good News with those who have least opportunity to hear. Thank you for making this happen!
Show and Tell Fund
(15/12/17) Among Mongolia’s extremely poor are those families that simply do not have enough warm clothing to send their children to school over the long and brutal winters. Local churches, together with social services and schools, work to identify the most vulnerable and provide locally-sourced thermal coats, boots, hats and gloves, ensuring children don’t miss classes.
Platform 67 have helped supply the winter packs. You can imagine the great relationships that have emerged through such simple gospel-driven generosity!
(14/11/17) Some 7 million of East Africa's Oromo people have been born again over the last two decades. However, only 1 to 2% have Bibles. Churches will often share a single copy of the Scriptures among an entire congregation. Platform 67 has provided over 1000 Oromo Bibles to help evangelists to preach effectively and believers to grow in their faith.
One pastor comments “Recently, I gave 10 Oromo Bibles to an evangelist and he was joyful, of course, but he said he had 20 missionaries ready to go and asked to which of the 20 he should give the Bibles?”
The arrival of the Oromo Bible has also sparked a little “back-to-basics” movement with educated Oromo Christians now organising classes to teach “the three Rs” to the illiterate among their congregations, so they can read the Scriptures for themselves!
Thank you for your help with this.
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