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God’s Greatest Commands

World Challenge Staff
June 17, 2019

When Priya* and her husband accepted Christ, their neighbors weren’t excited. Vicious gossip began circulating, and the pressure to convert back to Hinduism became intense.

“At times,” she confessed, “I wanted to give up and become Hindu again.”

World Challenge partners came to Priya’s church and talked about living as a light for God in the neighborhood.

Her heart was struck by Matthew 22:35-40 where Jesus lays out the Bible’s greatest commandment: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart’ ... And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

Being a Servant

Priya had noticed that the drainage between the houses was full of mud and rotten garbage; flies and mosquitoes formed thick clouds over the muck.

An Endemic Spread of Ebola

Rachel Chimits
June 20, 2019

World Challenge partners in Sub-Saharan Africa are faced with another outbreak of one of the worst diseases in modern history.

This June, the first Ebola deaths occurred in Uganda.

The infections in Uganda confirmed that the deadly outbreak has spread for the first time beyond the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Border towns in Kenya are on high alert, as health officials are forced to contemplate the possibility of Ebola passing over the Uganda border and spreading among Kenyans who have already been hit by one of the worst famines in years. 

Working in the Graveyards

Rachel Chimits
June 19, 2019

Bangladesh’s most impoverished and discriminated-against group is slowly opening up to outsiders and the good news of Jesus Christ.

Aatmaja waits by the gates, wreathed in the scents of smoldering camphor and incense, burning bamboo and bodies.

The cremation grounds are filled with pyres, feet often poking out with the big toes tied together. Families gather around the hottest burning ones, chanting matras that will hopefully help their loved one achieve “moksha,” freedom from the endless cycle of death and rebirth.

Another family enters the grounds, carrying a body on poles, everyone careful not to touch it. That’s Aatmaja’s job, that and tending the pyres, because she has no caste status or purity to lose.

She’s a Dom, the lowest strata of the untouchable caste “Dalits.”

Believers Banding Together

Rachel Chimits
June 18, 2019

As natural disaster hits Kenya, the local church is reaching out to bring a saving message and much-needed supplies to the hardest hit communities.

Famine has hit Sub-Saharan Africa.

In Kenya alone, about one million people are facing starvation. Cattle and other livestock are dropping out on the arid fields where drought and locusts have cleared away all but the thorniest plants. 

Returning Home

Anna Kozlyuk
May 20, 2019

Many young, educated Albanians leave their homeland in search of a better life, and Vera intended to be no different until she met God.

Mynevere Saliu, more often called Vera by friends and family, was born into a Muslim Roma family in the city Peqin. 

Even though she had been raised to respect Islamic traditions, Vera didn’t really believe in Allah. When she was able to finally leave for university, she couldn’t wait. She met up with a close friend there, but suddenly her friend started talking about Jesus. All this “religious talk” chafed Vera.

“I even told her, ‘You’re stupid to believe in a God you have never seen.’” Vera remembered. “But she wouldn’t stop talking about Jesus until one day when I finally told her, ‘If you like my company, stop talking to me about this Christ.'”

Holy Healing in the Dominican Republic

Rachel Chimits
June 10, 2019

Local leaders and medical students are working to more effectively spread the gospel to rural communities.

Over a decade ago, Tom and Nancy Hinton founded Barnabas Task to help address many of the medical needs in Central American communities, but they had a larger vision for these health clinics.

They focused on evangelism and leadership training for locals who were becoming involved in the work. Only a change in people’s hearts could bring the community-wide change many of these volunteers passionately wanted to see.

As leaders naturally sprang up, Tom and Nancy began handing more and more of the ministry responsibilities over to the local team, until the ministry in the Dominican Republic was entirely run by people living in the communities where they were serving.

Ebola Outbreak in the Congo

Rachel Chimits
May 23, 2019

Government organizations and churches are working side-by-side to help save people from one of the world’s deadliest diseases.

The current Ebola outbreak in the Congo is quickly becoming one of the deadliest in history, second only to the 2014 to 2016 epidemic that raged across West African, killing more than 11,300 people.

On April 30th of last year, several cases of Ebola were confirmed in the city of Mabalako. By October, the disease was swiftly beginning to spread to other major north-eastern cities. Doctors and other health professionals worked furiously to contain this budding epidemic, and for a while, it looked like they may have succeeded.

However, a surge of new cases turned up this March, hitting all of the previous hotbed areas once more.

Protecting Mothers and the Unborn

Rachel Chimits
May 22, 2019

In the Philippines, church workers are helping educate pregnant women about how to keep themselves and their babies healthy.

Pregnancy usually means extra doctor visits to make sure the mother and baby stay healthy.

Some women, however, don’t have this option because either they live in a remote village or it’s not traditional practice. They often don’t realize the many health benefits that preventative care can offer both them and their child.

In the Philippines, World Challenge partners have begun offering “mothers’ classes” for pregnant women in rural or poorer areas. 

Disciples Who Make Disciples

Andreas Steffensen
May 13, 2019

God makes a way for his children and gives them his favor, no matter how desperate their situation.

In Acts chapter 3, Peter and John are entering the temple, and a lame beggar asks them for money. Peter responds, “I don’t have any silver or gold for you.”

Pause there. This is a very strange response.

In the chapter before, we’re told the believers had everything in common and shared money with any who had need. Surely Peter or John could’ve run down the street and asked for some money to get this poor beggar through the day.

Instead Peter says, “I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!”

The formerly lame man goes leaping and dancing into the Temple, praising God.

A School for Christ

Rachel Chimits
May 9, 2019

Two church leaders in El Salvador were moved to help the country’s children and build toward a better future.

In 1961, John and Lois Bueno were invited to El Salvador to become the pastors of Centro Evangelistico Church. 

They left their home in California and moved to El Salvador’s capital to start a new life and ministry, hardly guessing the magnitude of the plans God had in store for them. 

The moment their hearts would ignite with a new dream for the ministry would wait until a year after their move. 

The Spark of New Ministry

John was driving home late, and he was tired. It’d been a long day, and he was ready to be home with Lois. Complete dark had fallen, not even a ribbon of pink left on the western horizon.