AND DARKNESS ON LIMA'S STREETS
Our friend Juan the taxi driver in Lima
spent his Christmas with people at the two extremes of life. First of
all Juan and his family put on a party with music and gifts in the
forgotten village of Picapiedras to the delight of many poor children
and their mothers. Click on the image and press Slideshow to see more.
And then in the middle of the winter night Juan risked his life by
going into one of Lima's darkest corners to visit a group of gay men.
He takes them food, coffee, hope and prayer every so often. One young
man, Ivan, dressed as a woman and selling himself to maintain his
family, parents and brothers asked Juan to pray for him and Juan told
me that right there on the street corner he prayed with Ivan in the
power of the name of Jesus and gave him hope of forgiveness
THE WORLD'S NOTICE BOARD
From the persecuted
church of Chiapas,
Mexico, Jaime Espinosa wants us to know
that Christian radio stations are being forced to close down and asks
us all to pray for a solution.
In Cape Town, South Africa Hilton Diedricks, 30, is starting
a School of Mission.
Another new School
of Mission is in Zambia and the leader is Gideon Sulu Chama,
a graduate from Pastor Jules Wazeng's School in
the DR Congo.
MANY GUESTS AS EXPECTED
INDONESIA PARTY WITH THE POOR
To spend his Christmas
with the poor our partner in Banten,
invited drunkards, prostitutes, people practicing
occultism for money and many weak, sick people and jobless
adults. He expected maybe 250 people but on the day 244 adults
and 203 children turned up and renjoyed a party that was full of joy,
dance, drama, singing
and then tears as people saw how meaningless their lives had become
without God and asked for His forgiveness. As Yoppi
those that met Jesus there was no greater
Christmas gift. Click on the photo and press Slideshow to see more.
AS AN ATHEIST
TRULY BELIEVE AFRICA NEEDS GOD
The distinguished correspondent of London newspaper The
Times, Matthew Parris
believes that missionaries, not aid money, are the solution to Africa's
biggest problem which he defines as the crushing passivity of the
people's mindset. In his own words Parris also confesses that his
recent visit to Malawi, "refreshed another belief: one I've been trying
to banish all my life, but an observation I've been unable to avoid
since my African childhood. It confounds my ideological beliefs,
stubbornly refuses to fit my world view, and has embarrassed my growing
belief that there is no God. Now as a confirmed atheist, I've become
convinced of the enormous contribution that Christian evangelism makes
in Africa." You must read this remarkable article, just click here. Thanks
to F. John for alerting us to this literary gem.
HAPPIEST DAY OF MY LIFE: PAKISTAN
That's what Pastor Sarwar, our partner in Lahore
- Pakistan said after holding a Christmas Party
with the Poor.
Click on the image and press Slideshow to see the event. Sarwar told
them the Christmas story and then three different singers led in
worship which had everyone clapping and dancing. Everyone ate till they
could eat no more and later all 300 widows, orphans, elderly
people and poor children received gifts of warm winter
They said that nobody had ever given them gifts before but this
Christmas every one went home with beautiful clothes. Two hundred and
thirty five men and women also decided to follow Jesus forever and
received God's own beautiful gift of salvation.
OF POVERTY TO BE THE BISHOP OF THE POOR
first met George Purkweri about fourteen
years ago on a visit to Uganda and readers of these pages
will know the story of this man's passion for the poor of his war and
AIDS devastated region of Lira. A free School of
Mission, a Bank
for the Poor; Goat, Pigs, Seeds and Chicken Banks, Parties for the
Poor have led to 27 Churches for the Poor which are full of
life and hope. In a colourful ceremony this Christmas the Bishops of
Uganda welcomed George not as the Bishop of an area but as the Bishop
of the Poor. Congratulations, Bishop George and Jane ! To see the
occasion click on the image and select Slideshow.
here to send
in your news here
ALL OUR READERS, FRIENDS
AND PARTNERS ALL OVER THE WORLD . . .
send you our very best wishes for this Christmas season.
May God bless you,
for being with us this year, for doing so much, for going to so many
places, and for making so much possible for so many people.
From Les and Pilar,
the editors, on
all the worldwide team that makes these pages for you.
CHRISTMAS COMES ON THE AMAZON
Our partner in Peru, Rolando Canazas has e-mailed to
say this week finds him in Yurimaguas
after a very long journey interrupted by heavy rains and landslides
that block the roads. Today he will be going up the Ucayali River
deeper into Amazonia and the plan is to make
it to San Lorenzo
to start second free DCI School of Mission, a gift to the people. Then
Rolando will find his way back to the Belen district of
for the Party
with the Poor in this desperate area where people live
without love or hope, but this Christmas that will all change.
DRIVER SHOT IN AFRICA ROADSIDE HOLD-UP
We have known Eddie
and Vilma of Healing Every Nation for many
years, they are Brazilians who are based in Scotland and amongst many
ventures have a brilliant work for orphans in Mozambique where they are right
now. Last week as they were traveling in from Malawi
they were held up by armed robbers. Their driver Terence was shot at
point blank range and Eddie, Vilma and Sharon were dragged under a
bridge and tied up. By the time they escaped the car had gone but
Terence was found still alive. Later the police cornered the robbers
and one died in the ensuing fire-fight which
caused his house
to burn down. The car has bullet holes in it, Eddie's possessions are
gone but Terence will recover. They are all thanking God for
protection when sudden death was so near.
MEDICAL TEAM OF FORTY
FREE TREATMENT TO AFRICA'S POOR
On December 28th Dr Angel Olmo,
his wife Abigail and their daughters along with an amazing team of 40
doctors, surgeons, nurses and assistants from EMSI
Mission Barcelona return to Burkina Faso, always
near the top of the list of the world's poorest countries to give free
surgery and medical attention to hundreds, maybe thousands of poor
villagers and prisoners. This is going to be a Christmas to remember in
Burkina Faso. We are proud to be supporting this mission.
PASTOR TWICE BEATEN CLOSE TO DEATH
Our partner in India, Daniel,
has just told us that, Prabhudass, who is his pastor and friend in Adilabad
which is in the north of Andhra Pradesh has been left with serious head
injuries and two broken hands after being attacked by Hindu militants,
and this is the second time. They say he was bleeding so much that the
attackers must have thrown him into a ditch to die but later a man
passing by heard groans and called an ambulance. This actually brings
Prabhudass another worry because this poor pastor has no means of
paying the hospital bill. The advert on CNN says Visit Incredible
India, indeed it is incredible that this lawless religious
violence is so often overlooked by the authorities.
THE BEST CHRISTMAS PRESENT IN THE WORLD
Our writer and translator in Honduras, Pastor Ana Avilez
has had some weeks of high tension following cancer tests in
different places following the sudden appearance of lumps and other
distressing symptoms. At one point an urgent operation was extremely
likely and much prayer was called for. This week Ana is a very happy
lady because without any treatment at all, further scans have shown
that every lump has disappeared without trace and she can get on with
life, a well lady. Ana, we are all so very happy for you and
WHAT DOES YOUR CHURCH
BUILDING PROGRAM LOOK LIKE ?
Our partner in India, Pastor Daniel,
wants to show us the kind of church building many of his village
believers worship in, even when it rains. Many of Daniel's trained
pastors care for people in four to seven different
each and at least 28 of his men need to build a solid church to comply
with the law and have some kind of transport to move between the
FREE SWAHILI BIBLE VERSE BOOKMARKS
Here is a self-portrait of artist Mei
who is 30 and comes from Shanghai in China. She has designed and
printed some Swahili bible verse bookmarks for a friend who is
going to Tanzania. She has got plenty left over and you can have them
if you can use them. They are very beautiful and you can see
website where you will also find some free
THE WORLD'S NOTICE BOARD
More than Conquerors are visiting
Arica and Iquique in Chile in February to do
seminars for believers who loves sport. Ask Jose
Javier for more information.
In Quito-Ecuador Semisud has a program of
Cross-Cultural Studies to help you go to any part of the world and
share your faith. Thanks Laura Saa for telling us.
David Rodas is a pastor in Quetzaltenango-Guatemala.
He e-mailed to say they have had three months of kidnapping and violent
deaths in his area of La Esperanza. David asks for a medical team to
come help the many poor children.
OPEN DOORS REALLY MEANS OPEN
Open Doors feeds 150 street children each week in a tough district near
the Thai border with Burma. So tough that one 10 year old girl was
found crying and bleeding outside after being been raped. Four boys
creep over the border from Burma each dawn having slept rough outside
their own village because if they go home people make them sniff glue
which they know destroys them but they are addicted and want
to get off. Our friends Andy and Val in Chiang Rai are
helping at Open Doors, they will tell you more anytime. Click on the
image and press Slideshow to see Open Doors.
THE WORLD'S NOTICE BOARD
Another Living in Kampala,
Uganda welcomes volunteers to
help care for orphans, street kids and poor children.
Joseph Ssinabuly, 28, will tell you more.
If you need free Bible studies in Hindi, Marathi or Manipuri
then Basic Ministries is the website to
see. Thanks to Henry Pulsifer in the USA for the
Hazel Bradshaw is 78 years young
and lives in Cheltenham, UK. She wants us to know that the beautiful,
true Christmas story is now available at Easy
English for people learning this language.
WAS CHRIST RIGHT TO SAY GO ?
Kosi Bungkus story from the jungles of Papua is one of the most
extraordinary stories we have ever published, it reaches into
very heart of the calling God gave to us in 1982. Only very
times over the years have we or our friends ever made it to the very
ends of the earth and on this occasion there can be no limit to the
honour we give to God and to these three men who heard and obeyed His
call, one of whom has decided to stay with this primitive people for a
lifetime. I know that some very well meaning people will not like this
news because they feel that tribes like this should be left alone,
however the fact is that if they are left alone they will be extinct in
very years from now or others with less noble intentions will
exploit them. Their gods have proven to be incapable of helping them
and if they do survive it will only be because the one true Living
God has taken note of them, and because three men loved them
enough to go to them with medicines and offer them a very cautious
exposure to the outside world. Even so the Kosi Bungkus have a
WHO IS THE LIFE AND SOUL OF YOUR PARTY ?
Our twelve Christmas
Parties for the Poor from
the Amazon to Indonesia have the fires almost ready to be lit under the
giant cooking pots. See the Dec. 5th news. This is no feeding
program that lines men and women up for a handful of rice. These
parties have ingredients like soul, compassion, love, hope and
the presence of Jesus who is pleased to celebrate with the
homeless, the widows, the orphans, the addicted, the AIDS victims, the
lame, blind and crippled and the women who sell themselves to feed
their children. They will all go home with their stomachs full
with their hearts overflowing because God has seen their sufferings,
heard their cries and has come down to do something for them through
His people. The life and the soul of the party ? That must be
EVER VIDEO AND PHOTOS ON WEB
PAPUA'S KOSI BUNGKUS PEOPLE
If you have been following these pages you will know that at
considerable risk of ill-health and cannibals three
the remotest jungles of Papua
to take medical help and God's love to one
of the world's remaining primitive peoples, the Kosi
Bungkus. These are
the first photos to emerge. Click on the image and then press
Slideshow. Allow me to caution you that the name Kosi Bungkus reflects
the fact that these primitive people do not wear clothes and both these
extraordinary photos and this unique video may not be suitable for
LEECHES AND CANNIBALS
JESUS, FOR KOSI BUNGKUS, FOR A LIFETIME
One of the team Adri has just reached home and has been
telling his story to Yoppi
our editor in Indonesia. Adri remembers how he cried three times on
this trip. The first time because of God's call to reach these
forgotten people, and then after two days hiking in the jungle he cried
in pain when his leg swelled up and he became extremely exhausted. When
they waded through swamps full of leeches they had to take their
clothes off so that they see could where a leech had gripped their
bodies. Then the three men were warned to go round the Korway Batu
tribe because they are cannibals who recently caught two soldiers and
ate them. The Kosi Bungkus or Korway Ujung are just 300 adults
children but have only two old people and a few surviving teenagers.
Adri told the story of how the head of the tribe decided to
follow Jesus and then all the Kosi Bungkus did the same.
one reason why - one of team Armenius, 24, wept when his hand was tied
to the hand of the headman as a covenant to say that he will serve
these people for the rest of his life and will never turn back. What
love is this ? Then for the third time Adri wept as they left Armenius
there, and this time all the Kosi Bungkus wept as well.
UNTO US A CHILD IS BORN . . .
For the last two weeks we have been holding our breath because
of the wife of our partner
Pastor Moses in desperately poor Malawi.
She was due to give birth two weeks ago but went into such pain and
difficulties that no hospital in Malawi could do anything for her. The
doctors said to fly her to Kenya but no airline would take her and by
then she was seriously struggling. We said, "Find a western
clinic and take her there quick, and we will trust God about the
bill." So Moses ran with her and in a day or two the
treatment made her comfortable but the baby was not coming. We
just got a text message direct from the delivery room to say
5 minutes ago a baby girl was born and so far both Mum and baby Pilar
seem to be OK. We can breathe again.
UNTO US A CHILD IS GROWING . .
Do you remember the story of the young lady from the School
in Nairobi, Kenya who was gang-raped in the recent political violence
but chose to keep the baby, and then when the pregnancy went very wrong
the hospital sent her home for not having any money to pay them
Our readers sent her back with the money and now Blessing is 100 days
old, ladies - click here
to see her.
UNTO US A SON IS GIVEN . . .
CHRISTMAS PARTIES FOR THE POOR
Parties for the Poor
will happen this year in Uganda, Belarus, Cuba, India, Peru, Nepal,
Pakistan, Indonesia and maybe in Liberia and Haiti as well.
was through reading Luke 14, 12-14 and Matthew
that we decided to celebrate Christmas with the poor instead of with
our friends. The Parties are our thanksgiving to God for His
of Jesus and to say thank you for all of God's presence, peace,
provision and protection in the past year. Luke
14.13 and Matthew
gave us God's choice of guests - the poor, the lame, the blind, the
crippled, the hungry, the thirsty, the ragged, the homeless, the sick
and the strangers. In blessing them we show our love to Jesus
himself, who is our guest of honour and comes visibly as Mother Teresa
said, "in his most distressing disguise of the poor." Perhaps your
church might like to do the same or maybe you personally might go
to just one unfortunate person and do for them what
do for Jesus if you could. Click for more
WEDDING IN UGANDA'S KILLING FIELDS
Only a year ago the atmosphere in Pader
was one of fear and sudden
death as rebel LRA militia roamed by night,
killing people and abducting
children. Now our partner and friend George
Purkweri has opened one his 27 Churches for the Poor in the
heart of these bloodstained fields to bring the love and the
healing of Christ to this long-suffering people. Last weekend saw
happiness in Pader with a first wedding. Come and see for
yourself, click the image and then select Slideshow.
here to send
in your news here
ARRIVES FOR SOME IN ORISSA: INDIA
We dare not tell you his full name but Orissa pastor
AM is just back from visiting believers and their families
who have taken refuge in a squalid refugee camp to escape the
mindless Orissa persecution for which India
should hang its head in shame. The refugees wanted to say thank you for
the gifts that this brave man carried for all of us who cannot
go ourselves. AM went down with fever for three days but he
says that God healed him and he was able to deliver 100 Bibles, 50
blankets, 25 children's dresses and 5 sarees which is all that one man
can carry by bus and foot. Click the photo below and select
slideshow to see the people.
REPORTS THE TRAGEDY
OF AFRICA'S AID ADDICTION
Mwenda showed me the head of the village, a 60 year old
alcoholic man who still lives with his mother and has spent
life living off aid money, supervising projects meant to benefit the
community. Then we met a young man who started selling potatoes in the
street at 17 and now 10 years later he owns land, a home and
the largest store in the village, yet he has not received one penny in
aid. "So you see," Mr Mwenda said, "If you were to offer this young
man support in the form of low interest credit he
could expand his business, offer employment and
service in his community. Read the full BBC story here and read about
our no-interest DCI
Bank for the Poor here.
1st December, 2008
ONE FRIEND TO ANOTHER
have learned a few things, like being envied is the loneliest pleasure
on earth, that self-absorption guarantees unhappiness, that the worst
motive for action is groundless fear. And I would not cross the street
these days to meet someone who is merely a celebrity or rich. I've seen
so many of those people up close that I know how little celebrity or
wealth counts in the effort to have a good life. Hey, it was
man in the pulpit saying this, it was Alan Helms, years ago he was the
most celebrated gay young man in New York.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE SOME OF
see our Picassa Albums from around the
one and then click Slideshow to see the display.
for Schools of Mission around the world
for Banking for the Poor projects
for projects to help orphans and the poor
to see some of the people in the DCI family
HOW YOU CAN HELP US
to join us?
here for a special page
ABOUT THE EDITORS
Norman is a writer, an editor and the publisher of these
pages that call attention to the lost, the last and the least of the
world. Since 1977 he has been following the call of Christ. He is
to Pilar and they have three children.
Find out more here
We will e-mail you a
reminder every month
in your question, news or story
of all previous editions
To the ends of the earth till the end of the age.