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In the Battle Together

COVID-19 April 9 Update

Typically when a natural disaster or tragedy happens, it affects one segment of the world.
We have seen this before with earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes that devastate a specific location. 

COVID-19 is different.

With COVID-19, we are looking across the entire globe. All countries, all people, are battling this same virus together.

Lives are impacted. We can see some of the immediate impact of fear, sickness, downward economy, people losing their jobs, schools changing to remote learning if technology is available, etc. We don’t necessarily feel what the impact will be in a month or a few months from now. But...

We will be changed. Every country, every individual will be changed. 

The countries that Lifeline serves in are all impacted...and that impact is changing constantly. In some of the locations, it is harder to get food, and prices in the market are increasing. 

Our leaders in the field are rising up, reaching out to God through prayer, and trying to meet as many needs as they possibly can through God’s help and provision.

Today, our leaders in the field need your help in 2 very important ways:

  • Pray: they are stretched thin. They are exhausted from the needs they see and can’t meet. They know their strength comes from the Lord, but your prayers of encouragement will help carry the burdens they bear.

  • Donate: Many families live day-to-day with no margin. They need short-term help. Your donation to the benevolent funds enables our leaders to respond quickly to needs. Your donation as a monthly donor provides energy for the ministry!

Last week, we shared how COVID-19 was affecting every Lifeline ministry and location. (See that update here.)


Here is an updated snapshot of the ministry...


Winslow, Arizona:

  • Brian, the pastor at The Well church plant, has been calling and texting church members to encourage them through this crisis.
  • School has officially been switched to online education through the end of the year. 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. Also, the teachers have informed the students they are available via phone to help with online learning.
  • Staff there has reported that the church and school parents are staying positive and hopeful, but the community’s morale has deteriorated.
  • 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:

  • COVID-19 cases are increasing. 
  • The house churches are doing the best that they can and are leaning on God for strength.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

 

Ecuador:

  • The launch of Google Classroom within the school was successful. There is still a lot of learning to do and plenty of confusion, but they are taking steps in the right direction. 
  • Even in the midst of this difficult season, we are launching new ministry initiatives. Our discipleship development staff has begun a pilot program connecting with seven Ecuadorian pastors via Zoom to disciple them in multiplication principles and modeling how they can disciple leaders within their church and community.
  • 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.
  • The main problem is that food prices have escalated dramatically, making it difficult for people who are not working to feed their families.
  • All the church leaders and families are doing well and connecting with others as best as they can.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!



Guatemala:

  • Deybee, the country director in Guatemala, visited every family in the church to check in on them. Many need food and are feeling disconnected.
  • 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 crisis in Honduras is mainly economic at this point. With many people not able to work, many are hungry and going without food. Some have resorted to protesting by burning tires in the roads in an attempt to get the government's attention to their situation.
  • Lifeline's container of food is scheduled to arrive April 12 (Easter Sunday!). Pray that they can expedite the customs process so the container is released quickly.
  • 70% of the students in our schools are engaged in distance learning, which is a tremendous accomplishment considering the challenges they face.
  • This week the churches in Ocotillo, Choloma, and Gonzales gathered local donations from their church members and communities to distribute food to 200 families. Leaders from the churches took all necessary safety precautions and rode motorcycles to all of the homes to deliver it. Half of those families were not church families.
  • The clinic staff has been under a lot of stress due to the fear of infection and lack of face masks.
  • The schools have created Holy Week activities to be sent out to all of the 400 school families. It is fun, biblical activities for entire families to participate in each day.  Holy Week is a huge celebration in Central America, but none of that public celebration will be happening this year. These packets will be a wonderful blessing for families.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

 

Haiti:

  • Our leaders continue to try to educate people about ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but it is very difficult.
  • The biggest need, according to our leaders, continues to be food. The prices at the market are increasing which makes it very difficult for some people to purchase the amount of food they need for their families.
  • Our pastors and leaders are working on creating systems of discipleship and care that can happen through the use of phone calls, WhatsApp, etc.
  • How you can help: donate to the benevolent fund so our local leaders can quickly respond to urgent needs in their community!

 

Panama:

  • Lifeline sent a container of meals to Panama, which is scheduled to arrive 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!

 

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!