A Word from Steve Jones: Foster care for children abused by cybersex trafficking will become a reality
Dear pastors, missionaries, chaplains and friends,
Steve Jones here… A big thank you to many within the Fellowship family who recently sent a gift to our latest FAIR (Fellowship Aid and International Relief) appeal, Rebuilding Innocence. This project focused on providing aftercare to children rescued from cybersex trafficking in the Philippines. Your generosity has overwhelmed our FAIR department and our partner organization, International Justice Mission, with whom FAIR collaborated for this project. As of today, we have received $35,746 generously sent by our churches and donors.
These gifts will fund a two-year pilot project that ensures rescued children will be placed in loving foster homes where they can recover and be children again.
Additional FAIR Updates
In February, FAIR Director, Dan Shurr, attended the 60th Anniversary Gathering of Operation Mobilization (OM) ministry leaders in Bangkok, Thailand. The FAIR department often partners with OM in response to emergency relief needs and Dan was able to personally meet with some of the leaders who were “on the ground” during three of these crises. I’ve asked him to share some of the encouraging stories he heard from his visit.
Hurricane Matthew Relief:
Henry Janowski is the enthusiastic Caribbean Field leader for OM. He has been instrumental in seeing recovery and rehabilitation take place in Haiti in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew.
Henry expressed gratitude for FAIR’s part in providing funding for this emergency. Their main areas of focus in Haiti were:
Henry (pictured to the right) is holding in his hand something called a “messenger”. The size of a credit card; it holds 50 of Dr. Charles Stanley’s messages and the entire Bible in Creole.
Robert Van Sterk (Netherlands) talked about refugees moving through Europe. FAIR has partnered with OM to alleviate some of the suffering refugees are experiencing.
Robert stood on the shores of Lesbos Greece and helped refugees land safely. One of them was Mohammad. Here is his story...
Mohammad was given a Bible back in Syria when he was younger and he read it with interest. But his older brother discovered the Bible, destroyed it and tortured him by laying a fire-heated spoon on his arm. He still carries the scars. So he agreed to follow the teachings of Islam.
The Syrian Civil War was terrible and Mohammad tried to escape. He jumped into a small, overcrowded boat with other refugees headed for the Greek island of Lesbos. During their voyage, a terrible storm caused the boat to nearly capsize, and was swamped with waves, making Mohammad fearful for his life. He recalled reading the story from the Bible of Jesus and the disciples on the Sea of Galilee during a tremendous storm. So he prayed, “if you are the One who calmed that storm will you calm this storm and rescue us?” The storm subsided and they were able to make it to shore at Lesbos.
Mohammad was greeted by OM worker Robert Van Sterk. He shared the love of Christ with Mohammad and his fellow travelers by giving them food and water, a shelter kit, a hygiene kit and a Bible! Over time, Robert was able to lead Mohammad to faith in Christ. Mainly due to the compassion shown to him by Christians. And Jesus had answered his prayer!
Nepal Earthquake relief:
Ben Hepner is the field leader for Nepal and is based in Katmandu. He expressed tremendous gratitude for the funds FAIR raised following the devastating earthquake in Nepal. The focus of their rebuild is in the rural area of Lang Tang. There is frustration with the slow pace of government in providing permits for rebuilding. The initial funding was used to buy every family a mule which is necessary to bring building materials across the rugged terrain. Even though it’s about 100 kilometers from where Ben lives to Lang Tang it would take two days of hard travel to get there. His team consists of many teens and young adults who sacrifice much to live and work there. The government allowed them to work with locals to build demonstration homes to teach the local people the building process and which materials to use. The demonstration home would be gifted to a deserving family, decided on by local leaders.
Thank you for your commitment to reaching out with the love of Christ to those who are suffering. It is a privilege for the FAIR department to serve you in meeting relief and development needs around the world.
Have a blessed week,