Archives For prayer requests

hurricane-matthew

On Tuesday, October 4, Hurricane Matthew slammed into the southwestern region of the country. According to the United Nations and CNN, the disaster has killed over 300 people and displaced some 350,000 people, leaving many Haitians to face the worst humanitarian crisis since the earthquake six years ago.

We praise God that our local staff are safe, but we know hundreds of thousands of Haitians will once again face the complete loss of their homes and livelihoods to a natural disaster. As Christ-followers, we want to be known for running to those who are hurting, vulnerable, and in need of help.

HOPE Haiti works with local church partners to serve over 6,000 active savings group members who benefit from training, fellowship, and discipleship that empowers them to provide for their families and communities. In this way, Haitian entrepreneurs not only access financial services like a safe place to save, they also build solidarity with one another and learn about God’s love.

We invite you to pray in the following ways:

  • Pray for southwest Haiti, including Miragoane, one of the areas where HOPE works. Pray for the relief efforts, particularly as the hurricane destroyed a bridge on the main road that goes West, cutting off access to aid for that area.
  • Pray for protection against outbreaks of diseases like cholera, which severely impacted the population after the 2010 earthquake.
  • Pray for the 200 savings group members who have been significantly affected. Pray for their safety and resilience in the face of any loss they may have experienced. Pray that the long-term development efforts of HOPE and other organizations would not be hampered.
  • Pray for the long-term recovery of the area. A major long-term concern is the complete loss of gardens in these areas, as food is already scarce.

We also invite you to consider how you can help bring immediate and much-needed assistance to Haitian families suffering in the wake of this hurricane. Two organizations with immediate disaster relief experience and a commitment to working with local churches are World Relief and Samaritan’s Purse.

Thank you for your prayers and support for the people of Haiti.

 

Burundi prayer

by Jean de Dieu Bizimana, Country Director, HOPE Burundi

On May 13, while I was in Lancaster, PA, for HOPE’s annual Leadership Summit, we received news of an attempted coup in Burundi. Though the coup failed, it was further evidence of the growing crisis in our country, where unrest and violence have become part of life in Bujumbura, the capital city, since late April, when our president announced he was running for a third term.

As the turmoil has dragged on, businesses and schools have closed, disrupting normal operations in our already fragile economy. Some HOPE Burundi staff members have gone to Rwanda for safety, part of the over 100,000 people who’ve fled the country.

In this atmosphere of uncertainty, I praise God that He is our constant, true source of hope. We say with the psalmist, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust” (Psalm 91:2).

I invite you to join me in praying for the people of Burundi, especially HOPE staff, church partners, and clients:

  1. Pray for peace. Pray that God moves in the hearts of the nation’s leaders to act in the best interests of the people of Burundi. Pray that peace prevails and that we find a resolution to this conflict that truly helps our country move forward.
  2. Pray for clients. With thousands leaving the country and many businesses closed, our clients—who rely on their businesses to support their families—are facing severe disruptions to their livelihoods.
  3. Pray for staff. Pray that God protects them as they travel to support and encourage volunteers and savings group members.
  4. Praise God for the solidarity of savings groups. In rural areas, savings groups have continued to meet, finding a source of solidarity and fellowship amid uncertainty and fear. Pray that they continue to find hope in times of prayer and worship.

 

Jean de Dieu Bizimana

Jean de Dieu has led HOPE Burundi’s savings and credit association (SCA) program since it started in 2012. Prior to assuming his current role, Jean de Dieu was actively involved in HOPE’s network as a board member of Turame Community Finance, HOPE’s partner in Burundi. He and his wife are blessed with three children.

Prayer

Today, we’re excited to share our 2015 network prayer requests. Through an extended discernment process, each program and partner in the HOPE network shared one significant request they felt is both a priority from the Lord and a dream bigger than we can accomplish without His power. We invite you to join us in regularly lifting these requests before the Lord, or sign up for our prayer update to receive monthly prayer requests and praises by email.

HOPE Burundi: Pray for God’s wisdom and protection for all stakeholders, for peace and security in Burundi, and that the Church in Burundi would be a light to the world.

Center for Community Transformation (Philippines): This year, we ask the Lord to strengthen our capability to face the challenges of these changing times: the ability to help build resilient households and communities; to set up and manage enterprises that will impact industries and create more jobs; to partner with local government units to allocate resources in favor of the marginalized; and to forge strategic partnerships with the faith community that we may more effectively evangelize, disciple, and build Christ-centered communities. Above all, we ask that the CCT Group will remain faithful to its calling, united in its vision, and steadfast in the pursuit of its purpose. May we do all this for the glory of God!

HOPE China: Pray for the Lord to provide wisdom as we offer new financial products and training services to our clients and expand into new areas in 2015. Our heart’s desire is to deepen the impact on our clients, their families, and their communities—both temporally and eternally—as we seek to love the Lord and make His name known in and through our work.

HOPE Democratic Republic of Congo: Pray that a very strong sense of God’s presence and protection would be with clients and staff of HOPE DRC and that we would continue to be increasingly Christ-centered in all that we do. Pray also for good relationships and favor with external regulatory bodies.

Esperanza International (Dominican Republic and Haiti): We ask for wisdom in setting the strategic direction for the organization, especially in adjusting to personnel changes, formalizing policies and procedures, strengthening branch operations, and developing new products.

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Praying in Congo

This week, HOPE International welcomes program and partner leaders from around the world to Lancaster, PA, for our Leadership Summit, a time of celebration, learning, and fellowship. During the Summit, we are spending time in prayer for our 2014 network prayer requests. Over the course of several months, each program and partner presented one significant request they felt is both a priority from the Lord and a dream bigger than we can accomplish without His power.

We invite you to join us in praying for these requests:

 

HOPE Burundi: Pray that church leaders in particular and the Burundi church in general would fully embrace God’s Kingdom coming holistically through spiritual, social, personal, and material reconciliation.


Center for Community Transformation (Philippines): May we have the eyes of Jesus that we may see what the Holy Spirit is already doing in our midst. Seeing and perceiving, we will join the Holy Spirit in what it is already doing; may we have ears that listen to the cries of the poor, the orphans, the widows, the abandoned, the oppressed. Hearing, we will be compelled to respond with the love of Jesus Christ; may we have the heart of Jesus, that we may always have compassion for those who are in need, the courage to do what is right, and the tenacity to see our actions through. May we have the heart of Jesus that we may draw strength from the power of His resurrection and focus constantly on what will please, honor, and glorify the Father. This is our prayer, in the mighty name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. AMEN.


HOPE Central Asia*: Pray that all those involved with HOPE Central Asia would have the opportunity to hear the Good News in 2014. Pray that, as a result, the hearts of families will turn to Jesus as they commit to following Him and boldly joining the wider community of Central Asian believers to spread His name and glory throughout the region.


HOPE China: Pray for the LORD to reveal two to three new project areas to serve as a foundation for expansion in 2014. Pray for the LORD to provide all the protection and resources necessary for us to invest deeply in His work to transform the lives of those in need.


HOPE Democratic Republic of Congo: Our dream for this year comes in two parts. First, pray that God would strengthen and bless our church partnerships so that, by the end of the year, over 100 clients would be actively participating in the Bible studies offered by these churches. Second, we pray that God would help us work with clients who, living in an uncertain economic environment, are having difficulty repaying their loans.


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When I traveled to Ukraine last January, I was unprepared for several things. The first was the below-zero temperatures, as the country experienced its coldest winter in years. When I arrived bundled in the warmest clothes I owned, I was roundly scolded by our local staff for not listening to their advice to bring warm clothing—as they loaned me something more suitable.

The other surprise came more gradually as I talked with staff and clients and realized the impact of widespread corruption and fraud on people’s perceptions of the future. That the government and its laws would actively obstruct its citizens was expected, a given, and it changed the way people spoke about their dreams.

Oksana

When I talked with Oksana, for example, she proudly told me of how she had used HOPE’s loans to successfully expand her small market stall selling coffee and tea. She now had two stalls and employed one person, and she’d used her profits to send her daughter to college and make improvements to her home.

But when I asked her about the future, she said she’d have to move to another country in order to fulfill her dream of opening a small coffee shop. Ukraine’s current economic and political situation, she explained, would make opening her own shop nearly impossible.

I’ve been thinking of this lately as I read about the protests in Ukraine over the government’s decision not to sign an agreement with the European Union. HOPE has a long history in Ukraine—it’s where we first started distributing loans 16 years ago. We’ve seen men and women exhibit ingenuity, determination, and hard work as they seek to provide for their families despite the corruption and uncertainty.

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At this point in the trip, I’ve had the privilege to meet with seven savings groups. These groups have been about 99 percent female and predominantly Christian but have included many Hindus as well. Through my time with them, I’ve noticed that prayer—personal prayer time, prayer as a group, asking others for prayer—is enormously important to them. I’ve also noticed some recurrent prayer requests that I’ll share with you so you can know more specifically how to pray for clients who are saving to escape poverty in India:

  • Pray that God would end domestic abuse in our communities.
  • Pray for my family’s health problems (diabetes, thyroid problems, fever, chronic illnesses, work injuries, etc).
  • Pray that we grow closer to God.
  • Pray that my business would grow.
  • Pray that life will be different for my children. Pray that their lives are not like mine.
  • Pray that our husbands will be freed from alcoholism.
  • Pray that our husbands’ and children’s hearts will be transformed by the Gospel.
  • Pray my kids will do well on their exams and get good jobs.
  • Pray that we can build a bigger church.
  • Pray that we can start good businesses and get regular work.
  • Pray that we can stop being so poor.
  • Pray that God blesses my family with a child.
  • Pray that I would be able to pay off all my debts.
  • Pray that my family would be able to live a joyful life.
  • Pray that we can stand strong as Christians, even with persecution from all directions.
  • Pray for our Hindu neighbors to come to know the one true God.
  • Pray that we have unity and trust as a group.
  • Pray that more people will form savings groups in our area.