The Andre Family – Nairobi, Kenya
Jordan has just returned from a quick trip to the Kenya Coast to learn more about AIM’s efforts among the Digo people. The Digo are an Unreached People Group of about 500,000 living in Southeast Kenya and Northeast Tanzania. Historians disagree as to whether the Digo migrated to their current location from Somalia or Southern Africa. Originally they settled deep within sacred forests in order to worship ancestral spirits and to be safe from warring tribes. Islamic traders visited the coast of Africa as early as the 10th century and had contact with the Digo. During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the Digo experienced a time of great famine. It became a common practice for them to give either themselves or their children as kore, or “blood money,” to serve as temporary collateral for a loan of food. Sadly, there were many times when the debt could not be redeemed, thus leaving them to live as slaves.
Many of the Digo who were brought to Mombasa as slaves later obtained their freedom by converting to Islam. Ties with traditional practices (such as animism and ancestor worship) still have more influence on the Digo community than does Islam. (Animism is the belief that non-human objects have spirits. Ancestor worship is the practice of praying to deceased ancestors for help and guidance.) One example of spiritism is their use of blood sacrifices. Such sacrifices are very significant to the Digo, especially in the exorcism of evil spirits. Witchdoctors are also consulted regularly.
Will you join us in praying for the hundreds of thousands of Digo people who have yet to even hear the name of Christ and for our co-laborers who are living and ministering among them?
For more information on the Andres including ways you can partner with them or receive personal updates, please visit andresinafrica.com.
The “S Family” – SE Asia
Crazy that we arrived in Indonesia 7 weeks ago! Time has simultaneously sped up, and slowed down.
We will be in full-time language and culture study for our first year and are already finishing up our first of nine units. In addition to daily classes and homework, we are also out in the community every day practicing our new language skills. We are encouraged by how much we have learned already- being able to introduce our selves, share information about our lives, and are able to communicate at a basic level in the community.
We’ve also already met some really neat people doing some really amazing things for Jesus, which is so encouraging and exciting!
Right now we are praying about whether or not we should get more involved with the college group that we have connected with. We are already attending their weekly gathering, but we are also praying about possibly discipling, mentoring and training some from their group who are preparing to go back to their villages. They want more training and experience in planting house fellowships, etc. This is really exciting, but we need to be wise about what we say “yes” to right now.
Overall, we are adjusting really well and settling into life here. But we would appreciate your prayers too. Please pray…
- That we would quickly and miraculously pick up the language
- For our two older children to make a friend or two (they are feeling a bit lonely)
- For health (we have been pretty sick)
- For direction, wisdom and open doors regarding the ministry work that we will be doing after language study
- For the people of this country to see the hope and love of Jesus and be transformed by it
As always, thank you for your prayers, love, and support. And most of all, thank you for trusting us to represent you and our Father in this beautiful, yet dark land.
All for Jesus,
The “S Family”
For security reasons, personal information about this family is not directly available here. For more information on the “S Family” including ways you can partner with them or receive personal updates, please contact Gary and Margo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The “J Family” – Middle East
“What does this word mean?”, I asked my Persian language tutor. His face lite up with animation and he began to explain, “this is a beautiful flower that we love. It is small and yellow, and when you blow on it the seeds blow into the wind. When we were kids, we would make a wish and then blow on it, and we thought that God would carry our prayers. Now that I am a believer, I think of the seeds of the gospel spreading.” Finally, he showed me a picture of a dandelion on his phone.
I was stunned. Ever since I began to mow our yard at the age of 12, this “beautiful, yellow flower” was a detestable weed which my parents and I spent time, energy, and money to get rid of. I had lost this blissful, playful view of dandelions so many years ago.
Learning a new language is not just about understanding and speaking, but trying to see the world through another’s eyes. Through this example, I got a small peek into their world, and am slowly learning that they are dreamers, emotional, sentimental, and not as addicted to practicality as I am. If we can’t see the world through their lens, how can we truly serve them well?
I praise God for Jesus’ example in this area. He saw the world through our eyes, taking on skin and bones. He entered into the full human experience. Now, He is able to fully empathize with us. May we have grace to copy His beautiful example of humility and love as we serve these people.
For security reasons, personal information about this family is not directly available here. For more information on the “J Family” including ways you can partner with them or receive personal updates, please contact Jed and Jaime at email@example.com.
D.K. Sarkar, and his wife, Choity, have been Anthem’s national EFM missionary leaders in Kolkata, India, since 2004. They recently celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary. DK is a native of Bangladesh while Choity is of Indian heritage.
Here are some updates from our missionary work in Kolkata.
D.K. Sarkar and his wife, Choity, recently participated in the annual conference for all National mission leaders throughout India serving under Evangelical Friends Mission (EFM).The Sarkars have exciting news about being grandparents for the second time as their daughter, Tani, gave birth to a boy. This was a great celebration because of the long wait for a pregnancy. They have a 10-year-old daughter. Prayer is critical for the leadership team in Kolkata. DK’s assistant is going through a serious time of doubt about his own commitment to service with EFM. This adds to DK’s burden for the ministry during a critical time. Emmanuel Hostel, the children’s home that Anthem supports, continues to go well. There are 53 kids, ranging in age from 6 to 17 who live there. Prayer is always important for these children and the programs provided at the Hostel.