“The Lord says: Be fair-minded. Do what is right! Help those in need of justice! Quit your evil deeds! Protect the rights of aliens and immigrants, orphans and widows; stop murdering the innocent!” Jeremiah 22:3 (TLB)
Europe, Middle East and North Africa
HAPPENING THIS WEEKEND IN BRITAIN: “CMS Super Saturday”
This Saturday – 13 May – there are five key events being held across the country in what has now been called “CMS Super Saturday”. Three are run by CMS and the other two are events that CMS is attending. Please pray for all of these events and do turn up if you can – there is something for everyone!
The first event is called “Mission Is…”, taking place in Liverpool Cathedral. A day of conversation, prayer, reflection and sharing with people in mission working in challenging contexts, both global and local, its aim is to go beyond the headlines and help people get to know others at the grassroots level who are putting their call into action.
The day also marks the launch of a creative campaign that’s all about getting more people to join in God’s mission. CMS executive leader Philip Mounstephen will be speaking on how you and your church can help answer “the big question” and be part of the story. Other speakers include Ian Adams, CMS’s mission spirituality advisor and a tutor at Ridley Hall, Cambridge; a mission partner unpacking what mission is for him and his family who work with and support Muslims in North Africa, and other people in mission working both in the UK and those preparing to go overseas.
The second is The South Downs sponsored challenge, with nine staff members and three others walking between 10km and 30km. They are setting off from Goodwood Racecourse, to raise funds for God’s mission around the world.
The third event is an Africa conference held in Southampton, offering the opportunity to hear about the life and work of the Church in the Great Lakes Region of Africa and beyond. It’s taking place from 1pm-4pm at St James’ Parish Church, Shirley, Southampton SO15 5LW. Bring lunch from 12 noon, with tea and coffee provided.
- Mission partners Caroline and Dick Seed based in Kenya
- Jonathan Lamb, recently returned from three years in Rwanda
- Mission partner in training Stephen Hatch, preparing to work in Tanzania as a maths and science teacher
- Katy Barnes and Penny Allen, a GP and physio, working with a project with disabled children in Uganda
- Alison and Paul Guinness, recently returned to Burundi, who are speaking via video link
- Patrick Mukholi, a former mission partner, who will give the closing Bible study.
The fourth event to pray for is the East Anglia Ministries Fair held at Norwich Cathedral, which CMS is attending. We’re hoping to find new recruits for both long and short-term overseas mission placements, as well as potential pioneer students.
The fifth event to pray for is the all-new GOfest in Dorset, which CMS is having a stand at. GOfest is a partnership of mission organisations, working with local churches to help celebrate what God is doing in his world and inspire involvement in mission locally and globally.
Lebanon: Phil and Sylvie Good
Phil and Sylvie Good are new mission partners in training who are preparing to go out to work in Beirut, Lebanon. They write asking for prayer for:
- “Our children as they prepare for us to leave the UK.
- A good outcome in selling the family home.
- Development of a good support base to send us on our way.
- Preparation of the Life Centre programme and office, and finding a home in Beirut.”
India: Mission partners E and R
Pray for two mission partners E and R, working in Bangalore in India. They have specific prayer points:
- “YuvaLok is a not for profit NGO, investing in the lives of underprivileged street and slum children, rescued child labourers, tribal children, young girls and disadvantaged women since 1993. It provides free formal and non-formal education, vocational training, nutrition and healthcare to over 1500 children, thereby creating an impact in local communities and bringing about transformation.
- Please pray for guidance for YuvaLok school’s leavers, as they get their exam results and work out what to do next, and for those who still have exams. Please pray for YuvaLok as it reorganises to teach in English, adapts to a new syllabus and tries to recruit several new teachers.
- Give thanks for the Wellspring Fellowship now having services every Sunday with an encouraging number of people coming.
- Pray that Wellspring’s services and Bible study groups will play their part in building godly lives, godly relationships and godly community.
- Give thanks for a great TAFTEE [The Association for Theological Education by Extension] graduation in April, especially for its pastor who has conducted some impressive research on church growth in Bangalore.
- Please pray that, despite some tensions between communities in India, Christians here will be gracious in our dealings with those around us.”
Nepal: Dan and Phillipa Munday
Mission partners Dan and Phillipa Munday write asking for prayer for:
- “KISC [Kathmandu International Study Centre] is currently engaged in a large building project – please pray for this.
- KISC needs teachers for August, especially a couple of primary class teachers.
- Visas are still proving very difficult; Dan’s colleague Ruth Russel and her husband Gordon's visa applications are currently in process.
- Dan’s team are working to develop new ideas to bring palliative care to rural areas.
- Give thanks that the national strategy for palliative care has been accepted by the government; pray it will be implemented.
- We are both quite tired – so please pray for us and for time to relax also.”
Guatemala: Mark and Rosalie Balfour
Mission partners Mark and Rosalie Balfour write with an urgent prayer request:
“We would be really grateful if you could pray for Rosalie who was admitted to hospital recently in Guatemala City. She had an infection in her leg following a graze after a fall and which did not respond to two weeks of antibiotics. Earlier this week, she had two scans and has been diagnosed with osteomyelitis, which means that the infection has gone into her bone. We have been told that this involves a stay of six weeks in hospital while they treat the infection.
“It came as a shock to us to hear the diagnosis, as you can imagine. We are grateful for a good hospital with kind and attentive care, that Rosalie has a good room, and, above all else, for our friends here in Guatemala with Street Kids Direct and Mi Arca, who have given us a lot of love and support.
“Please do pray for healing for Rosalie, for peace in the situation, that we would stay close to and hear clearly from Jesus through all this, for wisdom in all the practical stuff that this means. Also for our family in the UK and Spain – for peace for them. With our love and thanks, Mark and Rosalie."
Peru: Anna Sims
Anna Sims, a mission partner working in Peru, writes with some prayer requests:
- “I am now visiting Ancon Prison, a giant concrete complex in the desert north of Lima; it’s a long day, leaving my house around 6am to get to the gates for the 9am entry. With all the security checks we are normally on the patio with the ladies around 10am. Ancon has around 300 foreign women in it (mainly in prison for drug trafficking offences). Last week, one of the ladies on parole was baptised. It was a joyous event and her testimony had us all in tears! Please pray for this work.
- Pray for my visits to a lady called A being held in a maximum security prison. Please pray that we can coordinate an embassy pass (this is the only way I will currently be allowed in).
- Pray for the next phase of VCF (Christian Life and Formation – Discipleship) where we will be helping to facilitate Bishop Jorge’s vision for the church.
- Pray for the people affected by the flooding – many are now homeless and there are outbreaks of dengue.”
Northern Argentina: Andrew and Maria Leake
Andrew and Maria Leake are mission partners working with the Anglican Diocese of Northern Argentina. Andrew initially worked on the legalisation of indigenous rights to land. Since 2005, he has worked more specifically on initiatives aimed at empowering indigenous groups to protect their forest from being destroyed to make way for agriculture and cattle. He is now engaged in advocacy, seeking environmental justice for rural communities.
They write asking for prayer for:
- “The forthcoming meeting with bishops. Especially pray for funding for travel and accommodation of participants, and that the meeting might yield concrete results and actions.
- Land for Life’s (Fundación Refugio) ongoing work, especially as we seek to enable and encourage others who are involved in the struggle to care for God’s creation and who seek social environmental justice for the poor.
- Our kids as they battle on with their degrees.
- Maria as she keeps the family anchored and stable in the midst of all the comings and goings.”
Brazil: Jess and Mark Simpson
Jess and Mark Simpson, mission partners in Rio, Brazil, have just had a baby boy, River. They write giving thanks and ask for prayer for this and other things:
- “Thank God for Sarah Quinn, on her gap year, and pray that she would be able to make a real difference with the Canal kids, and unleash her dramatic skills on them.
- Thank God for our friend Luke Simone, a former lawyer now living among the poor in one of Rio’s favelas. He is now helping us disentangle our Britishness from the proclamation of the gospel.
- Thank God for the opportunity to welcome refugees and pray that they would hear and respond to God’s welcome.
- Pray for Brazil in this time of political unrest, particularly for the judges, and for them to be upright and protected by God.
- And pray for us all as a family as we adapt to life together, for all of God’s joy.”
Africa: Ann-Marie Wilson
Mission partner Ann-Marie Wilson writes with some prayer requests:
- “Please pray for the preparation and delivery of five key speaking engagements planned for this coming June/July – that attendees engage and take action.
- Pray for the celebration at my forthcoming pioneer lay minister licensing, with important meetings with my vicar, our bishop, the diocese etc., and lots to plan!
- Pray for the 28 Too Many research team, for continued work on the reports for Eritrea, Sudan and the law and FGM.
- Pray for the funding discussions with link churches and donors – that abundant provision is forthcoming for us to carry on our important work!”