Serving Persecuted Christians Worldwide - Food, faith and a future hope: how your support helped unite a community - Open Doors UK & Ireland
30 October 2020

Food, faith and a future hope: how your support helped unite a community

Thanks to your ongoing prayers and support, children in Sri Lanka have received sweet food parcels, bringing them great joy! The delivery of these treats has also transformed the hostile attitude of the communities around them.

Food has always played a huge role in bringing people together. Sadly, coronavirus restrictions mean that, for many persecuted Christians, food has become a scarcity, on top of the isolation that they face. 

Pastor Rajeev, whose name has been changed to protect his identity, has been ministering to a Tamil community for several years. They are looked down upon and discriminated against by both the government and the surrounding majority-Hindu and Buddhist communities.

“I had a deep longing to do something for the children in this village, but our church was not financially in a position to support them in any way during this time,” he says. “I had been praying to God to open a door for us to help these children when I received a call from a representative of your organisation.” 

Thanks to your support, Pastor Rajeev was able to provide special packages for 43 children from this village! 

Children received parcels of treats

Your gift blessed the children and helped to heal tensions in their village

“In addition to biscuits and jam, we also put a small bottle of shampoo and a bar of scented soap in the packages. Most of these children had never used shampoo before... Their families would just buy one bar of soap and use it for everything - washing clothes, washing dishes and bathing,” he explains.

Changing the mind of the community

Although two members of Pastor Rajeev’s congregation have been running classes for these children to teach them languages and maths, they have not been able to speak to the children about Jesus due to opposition from their parents. But after the children received these care packages, the church has seen a change in their response. Now they are able to begin these classes by singing hymns and saying a prayer. 

“For the first time, one woman came to us and asked us to pray for her. Now her family attends church every week,” Pastor Rajeev says. 

Even the church’s relationship with local officials has changed. “When we began our ministry in this area, we faced much opposition from the local authorities. The police told me they will not provide us with protection. But when they saw the church helping those children, the police officers who were present said to me, ‘Pastor, you have our support for anything the church decides to do in the future.’ Thank you so much for your partnership. This was a great blessing to our ministry.”

Please pray
  • That God would continue to open doors for Pastor Rajeev’s church to bless their neighbours
  • That these children and their families will encounter Jesus
  • For God’s provision and protection for believers who are sharing the gospel in hostile areas.
Please give
  • A gift of £42 could provide a Christmas present for a persecuted child to let them know that their church family loves them.

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