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COVID-19 Update: April 1, 2020

COVID-19 April 1 update

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has made a couple things clear to us:

  1. The reality looks very different across the world.
    Many people in developing countries live their lives day-to-day, finding work or purchasing food as they are able to. The closures of marketplaces, factories, tourism, and other major industries have made ordinary life significantly more complicated for many people in the developing world.

  2. The response looks very different across the world. 
    Brothers and sisters around the world are, arguably, more familiar with the uncertainties we're facing now in North America. While no community will be untouched by the pandemic, we probably have a lot we can learn from other believers about peace and patience in such trying times.

Because COVID-19 has been impacting all of our lives around the world and we realize that hardships will be faced everywhere, benevolent funds have been set up. Your donation to the benevolent fund gives these leaders the flexibility to respond quickly to urgent needs. Donate now!

On top of that, you can make a difference tomorrow: Donate a special gift or become a monthly donor to provide the fuel and energy for the long-term ministry!


A couple weeks ago, we shared how COVID-19 was affecting every Lifeline ministry and location. (
See that update here.

Here is a snapshot of the ministry now...


Winslow, Arizona:

  • The Well church plant had 88 logins for their online church service!
  • Just like the rest of the country, school has switched to online education. This is challenging due to families with no computers and/or Internet. Some of the staff are dropping off weekly school packets at student’s homes.
  • COVID-19 cases have been reported in Winslow and everyone is encouraged to stay at home.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

Canada:

  • Tableside Church and Northern Hills Church services have been moved to online.
  • Small groups are staying connected through online gatherings.

Cuba:

  • The COVID-19 cases are increasing and everything is being shut down. 
  • The house churches are not meeting.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

 

Ecuador:

  • Because of international transportation and tourism, this is probably one of the hardest hit countries (along with Panama) that we serve. 
  • Crisis is pushing schools to utilize technology. It is new for many of the teachers. Technology is one of the "pillars" of the school and this crisis is showing them how far they have to go.
  • Since school shut down, they have focused on training teachers to use Google Classroom so students can do online school...this has been challenging.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!



El Salvador:

  • The country is locked down pretty tight with people confined to their homes.
  • Our churches are gathering, but in small groups. They are intentionally keeping their numbers small.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!



Guatemala:

  • They had 6 house churches meet this past Sunday. 
  • The great hardship in Guatemala is that the majority of the people are day laborers who rely on daily/weekly paychecks. Many people are hungry and the Lifeline churches in Guatemala are trying to figure out a way to help.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

Honduras:

  • The entire country is confined to home. About 40% of the people are not working and cannot buy food. Churches are trying to help those in the worst shape from their own resources. Banks and grocery stores are only open intermittently, so even those with money in the bank may not be able to get cash for food/supplies. 
  • A container of food is on its way now, so they are trying to work on the paperwork and get clearance through customs as soon as it arrives. 
  • Schools are trying to get lessons out to kids but many do not have internet.
  • Clinic is open but running out of protective masks, clothing, etc.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

Haiti:

  • There are now 15 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Haiti (but this number is unreliable as many hospitals have closed or are severely understaffed as a result of the unrest from the past year). In response, the Haitian government has declared a state of emergency and has closed schools, churches, factories, and the border. Everyone is being asked to stay home.
  • Our clinics in Grand-Goave and Port-au-Prince will remain open but they are adjusting their services and procedures.
  • Our field leadership shared that their top concerns are sufficient food, lack of money (in times of crisis, everything becomes more expensive in the market), and Christians are discouraged because they are unable to meet together.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

 

Panama:

  • Panama City is in lockdown. Most of the cases are in Panama City but it is slowly beginning to affect the outlying areas including the indigenous people living in the mountain areas.  Lifeline’s local staff there are very concerned about what lies ahead. 
  • The government requested non-profits to send food. Thus, Lifeline is sending a container of meals to Panama within the next week. Jose is working with the government to expedite the processing and release of the container once it arrives.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!


 

Meal pack ministry:
We're encouraging groups and churches to schedule their meal pack events for summer and fall, as dates will start to fill up quickly!

  • Field leaders are desperate for food right now. A lot of families in the fields we serve live day to day and without work, families and communities are experiencing hunger right now.
  • Lifeline is working on ways to get meals packed until we can have groups again.
  • How you can help: donate to help fund meals!

 

Keep praying! We serve a God whom we know is in control of this situation!

You can make a difference today: Donate to the benevolent fund to enable field leaders to respond to urgent needs in their community!

And you can make a difference tomorrow: Donate a special gift or become a monthly donor to provide the fuel and energy for the long-term ministry!

 

P.S. We're all experiencing challenging times right now. And we're keeping our focus on Christ and trusting in God's provision. He's always carried the ministry through difficult times in the past, and we know God will do the same today!