Praise and Prayer

Praise: Newspaper Evangelism Results in Turkish Church—Ahmet Guvener, who pastors Diyarbakir Evangelical Church in Diyarbakir, Turkey, is living proof of the effectiveness of newspaper evangelism. Guvener was raised in a Muslim household but after returning from military service in 1987, he began to doubt the goodness of the god he read about in the Quran. When he saw a "little ad in the newspaper" (one of thousands of ads placed by AMG in many countries hostile to Christianity), which asked if the reader wanted to read the New Testament, he wrote and asked for a copy. When it came, with questions to answer, he completed the lessons, hoping this might help him get to America. Instead, it led eventually to his encounter with Jesus Christ. "The New Testament says, ‘God loves sinners and cares for sinners.' The Quran makes it clear that God hates sinners. The New Testament said when I sin, which is inevitable, I can go to God. In the Quran you can't do that," he summed up. The secular and religious leaders of his village were suspicious and hostile at first, but his changed nature gradually won a hearing in many hearts. In 1997, the church which grew from such a small beginning asked him to give up his well-paying job to serve as its full-time pastor. "Funny," he told World magazine: "I went into this thinking I would go to America, and now I was earning less." Though some tension remains, and the church still faces zoning questions about its recently-built worship center, it faces much less official harassment—due in part to national eagerness to gain respect and approval of Turkey's bid to join the Economic Union. Brother Guvener, however, sees it as God's hand at work.

Based on a report, "Frontier Evangelism," in the Aug. 18, 2004, issue of World magazine.

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Praise: Ministries Rescue Child Prostitutes—Several indigenous Christian ministries work to rescue as many as possible of thousands of girls sold or tempted into prostitution in India. It is estimated that 40% of the 100,000 girls working as prostitutes in the brothels of Mumbai (formerly Bombay) are under the age of 18. Thousands of them have been taken there from Nepal. Many have been virtually kidnapped by evil men who persuaded them to go to India by promising that they would have good jobs there. Some have been sold for the equivalent of $20 by poor parents who could not feed their families. One ministry in Nepal is fighting this practice with a strategy of intervention. Workers travel to rural areas of Nepal to show women a video on the flesh trade. They go door-to-door warning families about the dangers of sending their daughters to unknown "employment" in India. Numerous other ministries are taking in girls they have rescued from prostitution.

Mission Insider

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Praise: Grandmother Leads 500 Children Inside Prison Walls for Reunions with Their Fathers—On Sept. 11, Scottie Barnes, a former shop owner from Taylorsville, North Carolina, led nearly 300 children inside the walls of the largest maximum-security prison in the United States. This second "One Day With God" experience allowed these children something Scottie Barnes never had as a child: a full day with their fathers who are in prison. For many, it was the first time they have ever spent a full day together. Barnes' own father spent most of his life incarcerated, and died in prison. She walked from his grave promising God that if something good could come of this mess, she would do it. A few years later, a prison chaplain asked her to give her testimony. She thought she had nothing to say, but her story from a child's perspective brought tears from the felons.  Speaking invitations began to pour in.  She sold her local retail store and established the non-profit, "Forgiven Ministries." The "camp" was held at the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola, which houses some 5,000 men, three-quarters of them black and 85% of whom will die within its walls. Scottie Barnes' address is www.forgivenministry.org

From a news release from Tina Wilson

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Praise: Christians Provide 16,000 Schoolbag Kits to Israeli First Graders—When school opened in September for Israeli students, some 16,000 first graders from needy families were fully equipped, thanks to Christians around the world who responded to a call from the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus. The recipient children were selected with the assistance of community and social workers throughout Israel, from Jewish, Arab and Druze families living below the poverty line.

Assist News Service via MissionNet

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