Indonesia: The Abbalove network has sent out people into the devastated area – one that has traditionally been controlled by extremists and not open to Christian workers. My friend Hengky (representing the Indonesian emerging church at our Epicenter Roundtable in Texas, 2001) escaped the flood miraculously when he and his wife left the area the day before. They are now part of the rescue and aid effort in his country.
Sri Lanka: Youth For Christ is working alongside other teams. Brian O’Connell sent a report from Ajith Fernando which i have pasted on the next page. I have also uploaded his “Disciplines for Emergency Workers” doc for those of you serving where the action is right now.
Thought you’d find this communication and attached essay from Ajith Fernando of Youth For Christ Sri Lanka most interesting and helpful. It seems to have implications for ministry anywhere in the world.
Warmest regards for the New Year.
REACT Enterprises: Resourcing, Evaluating, Alliance
building, Coaching and Training
From: Ajith Fernando
Sent: Thursday, December 30, 2004 1:21 AM
As many of you have asked me to keep the letters coming I will send
updates whenever I feel there is something to tell. I hammered out an article in
the rush of everything. It may help the local folk to, so I am sending
this letter to my local list also. Perhaps this is how God is healing me of
the disappointment of having to cancel my writing sabbatical:)
Let me tell you about what the YFC folks are doing. It is a drop in the
bucket and many other groups are doing much larger and effective
service. YFC teams have gone to the East, the North and the South with relief
supplies and to observe and come back with a report so that we may
decide how and where we are going to be involved long-term.
EAST. I have just talked to our Mayukha Perera who went to the East with
Jeyaraj. He says the devastation is unbelievable. They went with another
staffer Pradeep to Pradeep’village which had received little help and
were able to distribute supplies. Robert Silva will take a group of
volunteers tonight to Batticaloa to help bring back a children’s home to usability.
NORTH. I just also talked with Jegaraj Fernando who with Timothy Godwin
were given permission by the Tigers to go with supplies to Mullaitivu
which is controlled by them. The death toll there alone is 9700! They are now
going with supplies to Point Pedro the Northern Tip of Sri Lanka where
we have a ministry and which has been devastated.
SOUTH. I also talked with Robert Silva who went south through World
Vision with supplies and to survey the land. Again the devastation is
COLOMBO. In the meantime teams of volunteers are working with groups
like World Vision, LEADS and the Salvation Army, packing supplies,
accompanying the supplies in relief trucks, clearing up messed up elder’s homes etc.
Please excuse some incoherence in my letters. I am at the computer about
10 hours a day. So mistakes are being made. My job has been to keep in
touch with our leaders on the field by cell phone, to keep in touch with
donors and inquirers through e-mail and to drive our volunteers home at night
as most of the others who can do that have gone to the troubled areas.
By the way the Sri Lanka death toll keeps rising. Presently it is at
about 22,500 now. How sad to find out that Indonesia is almost double that.