January 2021 Latvia, Iranians, Africa
We strongly recommend you download the "Bible Companion
" app, from where you can access Carelinks
messages, daily Bible readings, Bible Basics
, commentary on every verse of the Bible and audio exhortations on every chapter of the Bible.
For Android / Google Play at https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.carelinks.bc
and on the App Store for Apple / iOS at https://apps.apple.com/us/app/bible-companion/id1475914490
You can break bread live online as follows:
Sunday mornings GMT on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/69292278377
Sundays at 3:00 PM New Zealand time. That's 1 PM in Sydney Australia; 10 PM in New York, USA on Saturday evening [run by Br John Aldersley in New Zealand] https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81842718993?pwd=YWY1K0dDOW8yVCs2MDh4Mm80YWdoZz09
Sundays at 10am North American Eastern Time [3 PM UK GMT time, 11 PM Sydney Australia time]. Run by Br Jim Barton in Canada. https://us02web.zoom.us/j/9123758179
Meeting ID: 912 375 8179 LATVIA
The weather forecasts were correct this week. We had some days of heavy snowfall at about -3 to -5 C, snowball weather. And then the big freeze down to -25, turning the fluffy snow into hardened ice. This makes life extremely difficult for those living rough or in unheated rooms and sheds they are squatting in. We've been taking food, clothing and firewood out to folks, and also offering food on the streets to those 'lucky' enough to be in a night shelter. But night shelters give shelter just for the night, in the day time, elderly and vulnerable people are left to trudge the Arctic streets. We've been taking food, along with the Gospel, to those people too.
There's definitely genuine appreciation for what we do:
In these pictures of the firewood delivery earlier in the week to those living in sheds near the river, you can see a supermarket trolley. This is their main means of transport, as the elderly need something to hold on to on the slippery ice; and also, a means of transporting firewood and whatever they can find to eat. The supermarket trolley fortunately doesn't have to be used so much in this case as we are providing for them.
Some homes we go to are away from where we can park the car, so we transport the food parcels the last bit by sledge. You can see how folks in this dilapidated building are desperately trying to keep out the cold by putting plastic sheeting over the windows.
There's a video of one of the firewood deliveries at https://youtu.be/8cpu7-8TEgQ
Buying and delivering firewood is a major activity at the moment. IRAN
Please pray for our brother A whom we recently baptized online. He is very keen, breaking bread alone and also with us, sending us photos of the bread and juice as he breaks bread to ensure he's doing it right; and quietly spreading the Gospel to others. He was set upon by the "Basiji", young trainee Imams who are Muslim extremists, a kind of "Youth League" of the Islamist regime, who roam around his area disciplining anyone suspected of having quit Islam for Christianity.
They whipped him and beat him with rods, slightly cracking his skull. We've spoken to him and he feels "OK apart from bad headache". Definitely need to pray for him. He's still a teenager so going elsewhere is really hard for him. He is a very brave young man and brother, may he endure to the end.
This week we also had the online baptism of MASOUD. It was a very emotional online meeting, albeit behind our screens. Masoud mentioned he was from Tabriz, a city in Iran. And our translator burst into tears, he was born and bred in Tabriz, but fled as a young man on the fall of the Shah in 1979. Never to return and see his hometown again.
We had a nice breaking of bread afterwards, all eating the bread and drinking the cup in unison together- from locations throughout Iran, Europe and North America. Truly God raised up the technology for this situation. AFRICA
The apps in both English and French continue to be downloaded by well over 1000 Africans every day. FRANCIS was a Catholic whose wife died leaving him with a child to raise, and this experience led him to want to get closer to God through the Bible. And so he searched and downloaded the app. He came to see the Truth, doctrine after doctrine, with many questions, and reads daily using the Bible Companion plan.
We had a great group of brethren from all over the world present for the baptism. From brethren at +34 degrees in Lismore NSW Australia to -19 degrees in Latvia; from Holland, Italy, USA, UK, we gathered together to pray with Francis, exhort and encourage him, and to be encouraged by him and his testimony of faith and commitment.
Our French team were also able to baptize JENNI, again fruit from the French app. Mike Betty from Australia, Craig and Mim from France, Sarah from Belgium etc. were all present, although Jenni's internet gave out at the critical time. She was able however to baptize herself. She has a great zeal to serve the Lord. PRAYER POINTS
- For those recently baptized
- For brother Ali and those like him in Iran
- For those enduring the very low temperatures in Eastern Europe at the moment With love from your brothers and sisters of Carelinks