Downs Baptist Church Woodingdean

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Peace comes to Naisuite

Daniel has called from Kenya. He calls a couple of times a week to give an update. He wanted to tell us that there is peace in Naisuite. Praise the Lord!

Also fourteen patients who received wounds from arrows have returned from hospital, a two hour journey on terrible roads. Daniel has paid £50 for their transport and the hospital has waived their fees. The cost of their ongoing medicines is £60.

Kelvin, the boy who previously had his leg amputated, is doing well and his hut is under construction but unfortunately no one has accounted for the cost of a door and a window. This will require an additional £50. Daniel says that he is in need of raising £110. Quite often we have to tell Daniel that we do not have any money for him but recently we received two gifts for Kenya from church members and unusually Malcolm did not send them off immediately. He was unsure about where the need for the money would be. The amount that he had been given for Kenya was £110!

The money has now been sent and the medicines can be purchased along with a door and a window for Kelvin’s home. Malcolm has asked Daniel to be sure to pass on our love and support and not just our money to the people of Naisuite.

God’s church is making a difference. A small gift from us can make a massive difference to others’ lives. If we respond to God’s call on our lives positively his kingdom grows.

Kenya update – Kelvin with his new crutches.

Use of our gifts:-  The money has gone towards building materials for new accommodation for Kelvin who lost a leg in the recent fighting in Naisuite and for his mum.  The hut is under construction at the moment.  The funds have also provided medicines, blankets, cooking equipment and all the necessities they need to live on.

Present situation in Naisuite:-  Sadly fighting has broken out again leading to one further person’s death and several others being injured and hospitalised.  These are not members of the church that Daniel oversees there.  Joseph, who is from the church, is seen as a respected member of the general community and  is playing a role in helping these new victims.

Items for prayer:-

  • For wisdom for Joseph, Daniel and other church leaders who will be working with the county commissioner and local politicians to bring reconciliation between the warring factions.
  • That the government will fully waive hospital bills for those caught up in the crisis.
  • For the general political situation in Kenya. There is disquiet, in particular due to the way the president, Uhuru Kenyatta, seems to have side-lined his vice-president , William Ruto, in favour of his erstwhile opponent, Raila Odinga. There is a tribal aspect to this as each represents a different tribe.  The current tension comes from fearing that promises once made to one tribe will be undone in favour of another.
  • For Daniel the organiser and initiator of a forthcoming large-scale prayer rally involving firstly local church leaders, then pastors in Nakuru (about 1000 in number) and finally including members of many of the churches in Nakuru County. Pray that this event will be successful in working towards the healing and division within the country.

Meditation – Love

Malcolm brings another meditation for us to relax and focus on God during these difficult times. Prepare your heart to receive from Him – may you know His peace, His joy and more importantly, His love.

Joy and Gratitude

Enjoy another of Malcolm’s meditations: May you be blessed!

DBC Community Greengrocers Shop Slot charity Donations

Shop Slot donations since Christmas 2019 have been supporting Sussex Homeless Support. 

To date we have raised £300.  Thank you for your generosity.

You can read all about their work by clicking the link below:

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Kenya Update August 2020

The news from Kenya at the moment is hard to hear!

There has been some local fighting in the town of Naisuite.  One of Daniel’s churches was caught up in it and some of his members have had to move into a local school building so that they can still farm their crops.  Sadly, one of the church elders has had his home burnt down.  People have been injured, but thankfully everyone is now out of hospital and being cared for at home.  The people are desperately short of food and have asked Daniel for help.

One of the most shocking cases was of a teenage boy (we think 18) who was shot with an arrow and had to have his leg amputated below the knee.  A man who was shot through the side of his head with an arrow is now doing well.

The Governor of the State has paid a visit to the people of the town of Naisuite.

Gifts of money are needed to assist the people at this difficult time:

  • To cover the cost of the boy’s hospital fees (£100)
  • To buy crutches for him to get around
  • To cover the cost of building a new home for the church member (about £700)

DBC has sent donations to cover the hospital costs and to purchase food for the people.  Thank you to all who have contributed to this gift.

Daniel did not want to ask for money for the rebuilding of the elder’s home, but Malcolm has said that if anyone would like to help please contact him directly.  Daniel and the pastor of the local church have been extremely grateful for the gifts that have been sent.

Malcolm has prayed for peace in the town of Naisuite, healing of the injured and those harmed emotionally by the recent fighting. He prayed that the church would continue to shine with hope and with the security that they found in God.  He gave thanks also for the connection that we have with these churches in Kenya.

Meanwhile Daniel is hoping to visit U.K. next Spring after the cancellation of his previously planned visit in May.  Malcolm also has in mind a future visit to Kenya.

Many thanks to Maria for all of her help in compiling the updates from Kenya.  It is good for us to be reminded of the things that have been happening to our brothers and sisters so that we can pray in an informed way.

Feeling anxious?

Check out Malcolm’s meditation from Philippians on YouTube. It is rather lovely and relaxing:
https://youtu.be/ZMrznPXKmPs

Find a quiet place – you’ll be blessed! Enjoy!

Kenya update – July

Easing of coronavirus restrictions

President Kenyatta made 2 recent declarations:-

  1. Churches can start to meet together with a maximum of 100 participants, each wearing a face mask, practising handwashing and thorough cleaning and using a temperature gun. Over 58 year olds have to stay at home although this restriction does not include pastors. However, there is still food scarcity as the employment situation has not yet eased. Food is being distributed to pastors in the Nakuru area.
  2. Schools will not reopen until the start of the next academic year (January 2021) and the present academic year will be repeated by all students. This appears very draconian, involving current students with extra costs and other ramifications.

The Reproductive Healthcare Bill 2019

This private members bill has recently passed 2 readings in the Kenyan Senate. It contains 2 hidden clauses which were unknown to the church, that would relax the laws on abortion and homosexual practices. The Church is now working hard to lobby for this bill to be rejected/amended. Daniel and the Nakuru Elders Council ask for prayer that the voice of the church can be heard in this, especially in a forthcoming meeting with the senator for the Nakuru area who introduced the bill.

The UK Parliamentary Prayer Breakfast (via Zoom)

Daniel took part but there was no opportunity for other contributors apart from the main speaker.

The very high level of persecution of Christians in Kenya

Our pastor Malcolm flagged up at a recent prayer meeting that Kenya is now ranked number 44 on the World Watch List 2020 (Open Doors) which lists the top 50 countries facing the most extreme persecution. There are an estimated 42.8 million (82%) Christians in Kenya. They face 2 types of persecution:-

  1. From the Islamic militant group Al-Shabaab. Believers from a Muslim background in the north-east and coastal regions live in constant threat of attack.
  2. From corruption which is rampant throughout the country. Co-opted officials turn a blind eye to the activities of persecutors which encourages further persecution.

Please keep praying for our brothers and sisters in Kenya. This makes an enormous difference to those following Jesus no matter the cost.

A prayer for today!

Oh Lord, You know my heart better than I know it myself. You know my struggles and You hold each hope and fear in Your caring hands. Teach me, LORD, to be still and to know that You are God. You are in Your holy temple; let all the earth, including my mind and heart, be silent before You, resting in Your sovereignty. Like Elijah, teach me to wait for Your still, small voice and quiet the earthquakes and blazing fires in my life.

Replace my restless doing with inner calm, and help me, like Mary, to sit at Your feet in quiet adoration even if there are a million things clamouring for my attention. Just as You spoke over the tumultuous sea and storms, so speak over my heart Your shalom. “Peace. Be still,” You said to them, and immediately they quieted. Teach my heart to cease striving and to know – to have an intimate and deep, personal, first-hand experience–that You are God. Help me cultivate a quiet heart, like a baby content in its mother’s arms, no longer coming to You with a “gimme” spirit but instead calmly nestling against Your heart. Help me find quietness and happiness in intimate communion with You. You will be exalted over all the earth, and You’ve got the details of my day covered. I can rest in You.

Kenya update – May 2020

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, pastor Daniel Gitau has been unable to visit the UK this month as planned.  DBC has been supporting his ministry and especially the clinic in Dundori for about 25 years now.  At the present time we are sending a gift to help during the ongoing crises.

The Church in Kenya continues to supply assorted food packs of maize flour, rice, sugar, cooking fat and soap.  The distribution is being overseen by the pastors/leaders of the various churches in Nakuru County who include Daniel and his wife Fennih as well as Gideon and his wife Beatrice.  Some people have also received cash for paying rent.  The churches are fulfilling their calling as the last place of hope and a safe haven to those stricken by any form of calamity.

Three calamities in Kenya contribute at present to the urgent need for the distribution of food aid to poor afflicted families who otherwise would die of hunger.  These are as follows:-

  • The coronavirus pandemic

The latest statistics tell us that there are 758 confirmed cases of the virus in Kenya, and 42 deaths. A night-time curfew rather than a full lock down has been enforced since the start of April with people encouraged to stay at home and practise social distancing.  Nairobi, the capital city is a Covid-19 hotspot where a travel ban has been imposed along with some other major cities.  The government is involved in the distribution of food packs to poor families who cannot make a living due to the restrictions.  There has been fighting over the food packs and consequent injury as people try to receive aid.  The government is also distributing funds to the elderly from its social fund as well as footing quarantine bills.

Meanwhile sections of the Church in Kenya have felt unfairly left out in the role of solution provider to the coronavirus predicament.  A group of pastors has appealed for the Church to be added to essential services allowed to operate.  The Church believes that faith is the best way to fight an unseen enemy and that while the churches remain closed, the country may be involved in a futile exercise to prevent the disease spreading.

  • The locust invasion

Desert locusts continue to wreak havoc in 12 counties, ravaging crops and vegetation. Food security is threatened for both animals and humans.

The Daily Nation newspaper claims that the government is monitoring the situation and that it is spraying chemicals to kill off the locusts. It has reportedly procured 90,000 litres of pesticides.  However, heavy rains in many parts of the country have threatened to completely halt aerial spraying which is the most effective way of controlling the pests.  Therefore, at the moment very little can be done.

The UN agency, FAO, in its latest update, has warned that the current situation in East Africa remains extremely alarming as more swarms form and mature in Northern and Central Kenya and in Ethiopia ( note that Nakuru is situated NW of Nairobi in the Great Rift Valley).  Daniel asks for prayer that this plague does not develop further and that crops are protected.

  • Floods caused by heavy rainfall

Floods have occurred in different areas of the country and especially over Western Kenya and the Central Rift Valley, including parts of Nakuru. People have lost their homes, furniture, utensils etc. and crops have been submerged.  Displaced families need food aid, shelter and clean water.  Some people have even been swept away by flood waters.  Contingency measures need to be put in place urgently to save more lives being lost and to avoid further loss of property.  Infrastructure has been destroyed including roads, bridges and a rail track in Nakuru County when the land beneath was washed away by floods.  Residents of Nakuru also woke up to a collapsed road which was destroyed after a heavy downpour.  Daniel says that in many ways this situation is more urgent than Covid-19.  The forecast warns of more rains and floods during the rest of May which are expected to continue into June.  Landslides over hilly areas and lightning strikes are also probable.

Nevertheless, Daniel and the Church remain strong in faith, committing everything to God in prayer.  He believes that the Church will overcome all these issues.

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