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Poor Preschooler Needing Surgery Faces Steep Odds

A law passed last year providing health care for all people in the Philippines takes effect this month, but that will not matter to remote villagers where there are no doctors or medical facilities.

Impoverished villagers have long suffered from lack of access to health care in the Southeast Asian country.

Against this backdrop, a 4-year-old boy in Mindanao whose hernia made it too painful to play with other children didn’t realize how lucky he was.

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They Need Health Care – and Someone Who Cares

Villagers in the Philippines had waited in vain for foreign aid organizations to fulfill their promises to bring free medical clinics to treat their first-degree burns, pneumonia, respiratory infections and other ills.

Then a stranger from their own country showed up.

“He was attired in a traditional manner,” a ministry director said of the native missionary. “With blackened teeth strengthened by chewing betel nut, he smiled and disclosed that he came all the way from a tribal village together with his wife, children and grandchildren.”

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Small Business Start-Ups Transform Lives

A young Christian woman in the Philippines whose speech impediment kept her in the shadows was devastated when her baby died before his first birthday. At any church service or gathering in an undisclosed town on the island of Mindanao, Maria Dominguez stayed back in a corner. In the past year she tried recovering from the trauma of losing her child by selling snacks in her neighborhood, a native ministry leader said. “Unfortunately, she did not have enough capital to finance her business,” he said.

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Lasting Peace in Lands of Violence

A widow in the Philippines who came to faith in Christ in her 80s was just beginning to get passionate about visiting homes to share the gospel when she knocked on the door of the man who had stabbed her son.

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November 25, 2021
A Christian ministry in Greece helped a traumatized refugee mother from the Middle East obtain an appointment with a psychologist, but she also wanted to speak woman-to-woman with one of the ministry’s two directors. The refugee had left her four children, ages 4 to 13, behind. “She left her country running, trying to rescue herself,” the director said. “Her kids didn’t blame her.”
November 18, 2021
The pope’s historic visit to Iraq in March presented massive security challenges, with all military and civil security forces taking stringent measures. Soldiers at checkpoints were instructed to seize the cargo of any transport vehicle, and before one major papal event they confiscated local missionaries’ carload of 1,000 Bibles. “The strange thing is that we met several people while walking in the streets carrying the same Bibles that we distribute, and when we asked them, they said that they got them from the checkpoint,” a ministry leader said.
November 11, 2021
“We have had to see people die and go with the Lord, including local missionaries from our ministry, and we’ve comforted many loved ones,” the leader of a ministry based in Colombia said. Christian workers in Colombia and other parts of Latin America have become soldiers in the fight against COVID-19, with some dying in the effort to save others physically and spiritually. “We thank God that up to now He has helped and supported us in everything,” the leader said, “despite difficult circumstances and harsh experiences.”
November 4, 2021
Invited to a local missionary’s house for dinner with other Christians in Vietnam, Thuan was surprised when they were somehow warm, fun and friendly without the drinking or opium-smoking common in his village. “He had heard the gospel from the local missionary many times, but he didn’t like hearing it,” the leader of a native ministry said. Thuan could not know that accepting the dinner invitation would set him on a journey to prison.
October 28, 2021
Taiba and her two young children arrived at the office of a Middle East-based ministry exhausted, hungry and destitute after fleeing a Taliban raid on their home in Afghanistan. They have lived the nightmare that tens of thousands of other Afghan refugees are trying to avoid. Witnessing the execution of her father and the abduction of her husband, she and her children had to leave home, town and country with only the clothes on their backs.
October 21, 2021
Armed men in a European capital tied up a Druze refugee from Saudi Arabia last year and were torturing him as they recorded videos demanding his family pay 25,000 euros (US$28,900) for his release. When Khaled cried out to God, his Muslim captors told him that if he was going to pray, he should pray like a Muslim to Allah. In the midst of his ordeal, Khaled found himself in an unexpected spiritual battle.
September 2, 2021
Weeping, a young professional woman recently called the leader of a ministry based in her country in the Middle East at 11:30 p.m. Amal Mousa* still lived with the Muslim parents who raised her, and she told the leader that her father had learned she was attending church services against his orders.
August 26, 2021
Hasan Qasim was a young, well-off businessman in a major city of Syria when police stopped him at a checkpoint five years ago. The government wanted him to rejoin the Syrian army. Qasim had completed his mandatory military service 11 years before. “They pushed me to fight again,” Qasim said. “And I didn’t want to fight.”
August 12, 2021
Hungover from another night of drinking, a father of five in Brazil recalled that his wife had fled the previous night, figuring she had better chances of survival among wild animals in the jungle than at home with him.
August 5, 2021
A 30-year-old Kurdish woman was one of 6,000 Yazidis seized when ISIS militants invaded Iraq in 2014. Yazidi religion being especially despised by Muslim extremists, over the next three years she was sold to fighters of different factions who raped her and her daughters. When she was freed, her parents did not recognize her.
July 29, 2021
A 100-year-old church leader has long attended a local ministry’s training seminars, where he has encouraged others with his faithfulness in the face of persecution. “He has endured so much in his walk with the Lord, to the point that he was imprisoned eight times for his faith,” the native ministry leader said.
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