May 5, 2021 Update by Christopher Noel – Bangalore
Desperate prayers being sent up
The entire church community has gone on its knees to God. The transmission of infection is really unpredictable and high. Many young are also getting sick and need to be hospitalized. Many disciples and their families are getting infected and being hospitalized. This is the case for many across the nation.
The local government people are trying various efforts to support by setting up spaces for more makeshift ICU beds, since hospitals are struggling to cater to the high number of people in need. Many organizations have come together in coordinating efforts to support and serve. Some are efforts to get much needed information out to people. Some have taken up the responsibility of coordinating patient to medical service. Some organizations and even individuals have taken up preparing free food for people with Covid-19 in home quarantine. HOPE worldwide is working closely with the church here to give much needed Covid-19 related relief. Covid-19 relief teams are being formed within the church to cater to those members, their families and friends, who are in need. The church has also been connecting medical professionals to talk to the members’ community on how they can become a healing community under the circumstances.
Much needed spiritual encouragement
Many prayer interventions have started in various parts of the country, on virtual platforms and through phone calls. WhatsApp groups have been made to request for prayers and prayer audio recordings are being sent to the person to be comforted. A noon prayer time is set up everyday on Zoom for the Bangalore church. Since Bangalore is under a lockdown, many are able to join from their homes. The evangelists and other matured leaders start with verses and everyone is given space and time to pray in breakout rooms. Much needed spiritual comfort and encouragement is being provided through new daily quiet time series titled “Power of One.” This is based on content from the book series by the staff of Lagos church from Nigeria, who have graciously given permission to use the content. We are very grateful to the Lagos staff for sharing these resources. These videos on YouTube, audios on our church webpage and text on pdf files are circulated every day for everyone to be encouraged. Videos are in English, Tamil and Kannada languages for now.
- These can be found on the Resources4life YouTube channel.
- Power of One – English videos playlist
- Webpage link for Power of One content
Even as disciples seem to be hearing news that hurts the heart, news of answered prayers have started coming in, of people getting space in hospitals and people getting better. With renewed hope for more such answers from God, we all keep praying for the thousands across South Asia and many more across the globe. All disciples from the South Asian churches are very grateful for the family of churches across the world for their assurance through prayers and HOPE worldwide for stepping in to help with relief.
“Pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18
April 25, 2021 Update
Things seem to grow worse by the day with the number of infections shooting up – having a million new cases testing positive in just two to three days. Also, what we have seen in the past few days is deaths due to COVID in the churches. With so many cases, it has been difficult to get a bed in hospitals in many cities of India and even when we do ventilator and oxygen cylinder supply has been scarce. In the midst of the horror of this second wave of this pandemic in India, the churches in South Asia have been fighting the battle in prayer and have been knocking on heaven’s door for mercy.
It is with great regret we announce that out of the 7000+ disciples in our Indian churches, about 250 are affected by the virus and we have seen a few deaths in the past few days. Young brothers like Subhash Gaikwad from Mumbai (survived by young children) went to be with the Lord yesterday. Another brother Joseph passed away from the same Virar sector in Mumbai a few days ago – he is survived by his wife and two children as well. A single mother from Delhi, Panchami (survived by four disciple children) who served in the Asharan Orphanage (for the lepers in Delhi) also went to be with the Lord yesterday.
We believe God is still our ever-present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1-2) and believe that his angels are protecting us as promised in Psalm 91. As you know, many disciples are not able to attend their offices (many work for daily wages) and are thankful for HOPE worldwide and for our brothers and sisters around the world for the help they have provided and continue to provide. I know all of us across the spectrum have difficult situations and we stand together in prayer beside you.