Issued on Wednesday, 24th September 2014
James and Heather Cochrane, send the following prayer points:-
· Give thanks for the 60 people who were present at the church planting conference last Friday (19th). It was an encouraging and challenging day.
· Give thanks for the first ‘Come, See & Pray’ team (made up of five women from the PW Central Committee), who were with the Cochranes last weekend. The opportunity for prayerful fellowship was most encouraging. Pray for the women as they process all they have seen and heard, and as they report back to their congregations and presbyteries.
THE MIDDLE EAST
The open-ended truce between Israel and Gaza is now almost a month old. The United Nations (UN) estimate that in July and August, there were 5,226 air strikes on Gaza, with 4,591 rockets and mortars fired at Israel from Gaza. They also estimate over 2,000 people were killed in Gaza (69% civilians), 7 civilians killed in Israel, and in Gaza that 470,000 people were displaced, with over 17,200 homes destroyed or severely damaged.
· Give thanks that the ceasefire has held and pray for further talks to bring about a lasting peaceful and just solution, including an end to terrorist attacks by Hamas on Israel.
· Pray for those who lost loved ones, were injured, who have been displaced from their homes and those who continue to suffer the consequences of the attacks.
· Remember too people on both sides who are living in fear of possible future attacks.
· Pray that sufficient humanitarian assistance and medical help will reach those still in need.
This week has seen the start of airstrikes by the USA and others on Islamic State fighters in areas of Iraq and Syria.
· Pray for the Syria, Iraq and the other countries of the Middle East at this difficult time.
· Pray for innocent civilians caught up in the crisis and for refugees fleeing the area to find a place of safety and security where they can access humanitarian and medical assistance.
· Pray that the Middle East will become a place of peace, justice and freedom of religion.
Our partner church, the Presbyterian Church of South Sudan reports that sadly despite the ongoing peace talks in Addis Abba, Ethiopia, the conflict continues on the ground in different areas in Upper Nile State and in Unity State. Recently, fighting and shelling has been particularly severe in Renk County and in the Malakal area, with large number of civilians fleeing the areas in fear of their lives.
The Moderator’s ‘South Sudan Famine Appeal’ launched in August is ongoing and PCI congregations are encouraged to support the appeal, where possible, if they have not already done so.
· Pray that the ‘South Sudan Famine Appeal’ will be well-supported by PCI members, as it will bring a measure of help to many people in great need.
· Pray for an immediate ceasefire and lasting peace in South Sudan.
· Pray for the people of South Sudan, particularly for all those who are living in daily fear of meeting with violence, having their homes destroyed or suffering death; and for those who are injured, displaced or grieving.
· Pray for all in need of food aid, water and medical treatment. Pray that each person will get the humanitarian assistance they need in time.
· Pray for all working to bring relief aid to those most in need, that their efforts will succeed despite the very complex situation on the ground and the significant ‘logistical’ challenges they face.
· Pray for the leaders and members of the Presbyterian Church of South Sudan. Pray that they will find strength in the Lord at this time of catastrophe. Remember especially the Moderator, Rev Peter Gai Lual and General Secretary Rev John Yor Nyiker, as they seek to provide wise and courageous leadership.
See News item ‘Violence Continuing Despite Famine and Peach Talks’ – www.pcimissionoverseas.org/news/item/834/
For more info on the Appeal go to: www.pcimissionoverseas.org/get-involved/south-sudan-famine-appeal/
Gary and Mary Reid write, “This past week a team of men from Greenisland and Carrickfergus, representing African Child Ministries, were at the Mission assisting in the community and on the Mission Station. This has been helpful to Gary as he is still recovering from his illness.
One of the young girls, Natasha, who ran to the Mission has now been placed by the Mission into a school far from Narok to protect her from harm. Also this past week yet another girl ran to the Mission, a distance of 10 miles, to escape marriage. She was fourteen years old. We were able to resolve her case quickly and the family agreed to put her into school.
Over the past years we have been working with some disabled children. This week a mother brought her sixteen year old son to meet us. He suffers from cerebral palsy. It was a moving experience to meet him.
We have been greatly encouraged with the Worship Leaders’ response within the Churches during Gary’s absence. Furthermore, new converts have joined Nkaimurunya PCEA church.”
· Give thanks for the team and all that they were able to do amongst the Maasai and on the Mission Station.
· Give thanks that Natasha is now in school. Pray that she will be able to relax and concentrate on her future and, above all, that she will come to know the Lord Jesus Christ.
· Give thanks for Diana as she leads the Isintin church and also for the new believers in Nkaimurunya.
· Pray for the Reid children at boarding school and also for Samuel as he continues to be home schooled.
Naomi Leremore is pleased to report that launch of the TEE diploma on ‘The Holistic Nurturing of Children’ went well. The course focuses on Christians caring for children in the home, church and society. The team of writers, which Naomi is leading, is meeting today (Wednesday 24th) to review the launch and get progress updates on the seven remaining books. Book two and three are currently being proof read in preparation for printing.
· Give thanks for the successful launch of this new course.
· Pray for the writers as they complete their task, for the proof readers and for those involved in the printing of the books.
· Pray that many will hear about this new course and start up study groups all over Kenya.
· Pray that children will feel the positive impact as a result of individuals taking this course and changing their attitudes and actions towards children in their homes, churches and society around them.
A few months ago Theological Education by Extension in Malawi (TEEM) reached an agreement with ‘The Good Book Company’ in the UK to translate one of their booklets into Chichewa as well as Chitumbuka. The book is a preaching aid to help people to preach from the book of Philippians. The material will be a great asset if it can reach the many preachers in Malawi.
During his time in Ireland, Volker Glissmann also reached a general agreement with ‘The Myrtlefield Trust’ to translate David Gooding and John Lennox’s book ‘Key Bible Concepts’ into Chichewa. The details still need to be worked out, but we feel that the book will make a good contribution to the wider church.
· Praise the Lord for the development of TEEM’s printing department and for generous friends who helped develop our printing capacity over the last few years.
· Pray for TEEM’s Coordinators who oversee different aspects of the translation project and for wisdom for the translators.
Rev Uel Marrs, Overseas Secretary is going on a short trip to India, departing this Sunday, 28th September. Uel will attend the Church of North India's Overseas Partnership meeting on Tuesday 30th September at which he will meet with CNI leaders and some of their other overseas partners. This will be a great opportunity to discuss how the churches can better support and learn from one another as they serve together in God’s mission. He will also attend the first two days of the CNI’s 15th Ordinary Synod taking place from Wednesday 1st to Sunday 4th October 2014. Uel will travel back to Ireland on Friday 3rd October.
· Pray for the Church of North India; for its leaders and members as they continue to witness for Christ.
· Pray for the Partnership and Synod meetings to go smoothly and for wise decision-making.
· Pray too that Uel will have a safe and trouble-free trip.
The 64th General Assembly of Eukumindo, a discussion and networking forum that brings together representatives from European-based churches and mission agencies involved in Indonesia, is taking place from Thursday, 25th to Saturday 27th September in the Netherlands.
· Pray for the Assembly and for wisdom and guidance from God in all that is discussed and in any decisions that are made.
The Bible Societies in Ireland report, “It is good to thank God for answered prayer, and prayers for unpublished Bible translations have indeed been richly answered.”
· Give thanks that in recent days, BSNI has been able to provide funds for the printing of 20,000 Bibles in the Alur and Lendu languages that are spoken in the Democratic Republic of Congo. These are language groups which number a million speakers or more, which have been waiting at least 30 years for God to speak to them in a language that they understand – their heart language.
· Give thanks for the translators who have laboured against every possible threat and obstacle and for our generous donors - people who have a heart that others might discover Christ through reading Scripture.
· Pray for Rev Christophe Kongo, General Secretary of the Bible Society of DR Congo, who is arranging for the Bible Society in South Korea to print and deliver these books, and pray for those in the churches in the North-East of the country and in Southern Uganda who are waiting with excitement to experience the joy of reading and hearing the words of Christ in the coming months, for the very first time.