This verse in 2 Samuel 22:29 came to my mind as I was about to share with you some very important news.
The truth is, there is so much darkness around us right now. But on the backdrop of this darkness God’s presence and love and power are even more luminous.
Whatever the enemy tries to interrupt or destroy or steal in the end plays into fulfilling God’s plan. Jesus’s death was not the end of His ministry but the beginning of His destiny as the Savior. I thought of this when I received the news a few days ago that one of our pastors in Mexico passed away from Covid-19. A young husband and a father of four children. Though this is a hard blow from the enemy, it can not stop the massive move of God’s spirit that is happening in Mexico right now.
I had to remind myself of this verse when our mission Ethiopia 2021 started off with the biggest disappointment – the border closed for us a day before departure. But as you read below God turned this disappointment into something very beautiful.
Has the enemy stolen something from you? Is your heart hurting today? Does your hope need a boost? We don’t always have the power or the ability to escape difficult circumstances or dark times, but we know that God’s presence transforms darkness and surrounds us with His glorious light
Helen and I are praying daily for you and all of our WMA family. We cherish your partnership in the Great Commission and want to keep you informed on what is happening. I think you will find the news below extremely encouraging!
There is more than one reason why I am writing this email to you. Number one, I believe in keeping you informed on what is happening within World Missions Alliance because you are an important part of our WMA family. Number two, I think what I am about to share is extremely encouraging.
As you may know, the month of July was set aside for the World Missions Alliance to do a mission in Ethiopia. The Lord put together a wonderful team, our partners in Ethiopia were expecting us, our ministry schedule was full of assignments. One of them was to minister at an orphanage in Addis Ababa. This is the orphanage we have visited every year we come to Ethiopia. It holds a special place in the hearts of Helen and I. The Catholic nun, sister Lucarda, who is in charge of the orphanage, has always welcomed us warmly and allowed us to share the Gospel with the kids. This year they especially needed our help. The Covid-19 pandemic and the political turmoil have created a sharp inflation. The orphanage could not afford to buy food for the kids. In lieu of shoes – a gift that we traditionally purchased for the orphanage, they begged for groceries.
No words can describe my disappointment when a day before our departure to Ethiopia we found out that the border closed. Not because of Covid-19 but for political reasons. We had to cancel the trip. For a moment it seemed like the enemy won…
We knew that even though we can’t go, we will help the kids. Suddenly we received several unexpected donations! Combined with the funds we had already designated for the project, we were able to send to the orphanage 100 pairs of new tennis shoes, 800 lb of teff (grain for Ethiopian bread, 200 lb of flour, 400 lb of pasta and 20 liters of cooking oil.
Watching the smiles and excitement on the kids’ faces when we got the pictures and videos of the distribution was the highlight of the month of July for me.
Whatever the enemy steals from us, whatever he prevents us from doing cannot stop God’s plan, favor or provision.
Then a few weeks later God opened new doors for us in Ethiopia that will expand our outreach in this nation into new ways to proclaim the Gospel including connections with high level government officials and opportunities to do medical missions on a larger scale.
Stay tuned for more news on the Ethiopia trip in May 2022.
Albania is one of the countries in Eastern Europe where the orphaned kids are neglected by the social system. Most of them have been abandoned by the parents who are alive but do not want the responsibility of raising them or even seeing them occasionally. These kids are forgotten by the world, The Albanian government does not have a good system in place to care for them or give them a future. At the age of 14 the kids must leave the orphanage and their lives become even more difficult.
Another opportunity to help is reaching out to the Albanian gypsy families – the Romas. Being marginalized in the society the Romas are generally paid less than half of the salary a non-Roma worker would receive. There are reports that the Romas are sometimes forced to pay bribes to receive proper medical treatment. Many children in large Romani families suffer from malnutrition, which affects their overall health and ability to study.
Our partner church in Tirana (the capital) is currently supporting 800 orphaned kids and has 400 more children that need help. We want to help feed these kids and make sure they have everything they need to start the school year!
Will you consider helping us provide food for the kids and the impoverished Roma people?
We have a new mission trip opportunity on our 2021 schedule! As you may know in the last 2 years the Lord has started opening doors for WMA in the Balkan region with us first being able to travel to and minister in Serbia, then later in North Macedonia as well. Once again it has been confirmed that He desires us to reach the nations of this particular part of the world as the door has now opened up for us to begin working in Albania.
Albania was first a catholic country due to the Roman’s invasion, but in the 15th century after the Ottoman invasion it became Muslim. Since it shares a border in the south with Greece, many inhabitants of these areas are orthodox. From the end of the 1960s practicing a religion was forbidden by the communist regime. It was after the fall of this regime that the Albanians started to practice religion again.
Today the evangelical church in Albania is just 0.5% of the population. Many people have not heard of Jesus and the church needs help to spread the Good News.
October 11-21, 2021, we will embark on our groundbreaking mission to Albania and I’m so excited to see who God calls to go with us! We will work in the capital of Albania, Tirana, and the surrounding areas.Our main partner, Pastor Hervin, was born to a Muslim family and committed his life to Christ at age 17. The church has a Bible school where our team is invited to teach. People are hungry for the Gospel but there are very few workers in Albania who are trained in the Bible.
We have many evangelistic opportunities including medical clinic outreach, which we need a good number of medical professionals for. We will be distributing Bibles, providing food for, and ministering to 400 orphaned kids and many underprivileged families in the Gypsy communities.
Through medical missions, orphanage support and partnership with local churches we have an unprecedented opportunity to safely share the love of Christ in Albania this October!
Please let us know if God is calling you on this mission as we have a limited number of spots on this team. I am praying that the Lord hand selects individuals to fulfill this historic and groundbreaking mission!