Pray for our office staff. Pray for: Ministry Assistant Elicia Cronk, Financial Secretary Shirley Amos, and Custodian Joe Robsky. Pray that God would continue to bless them as they serve our church in many behind-the-scenes capacities. Pray that our church family will find ways to appreciate them for their faithful service.
GRAND ISLAND/North Lake County
Pray for the First Academy Leesburg as they start school next week. Pray for the students to have a great year. Pray for the faculty, especially Pastor Clint, to have many opportunities to influence students with the gospel. Pray for Amanda Patterson as she serves as Guidance Counselor.
Pray for parents who are currently making decisions regarding sending their kids back to school. Many school districts are offering multiple school options and educational platforms. Pray that this will be a net benefit for children. Pray that schools would make wise choices without putting undue burden on their staffs, parents, or students.
Pray for an end to the unrest that continues to plague many metropolitan cities. Pray that those who seek to use violence and intimidation will not be successful in their mission. Pray for the law enforcement agencies who are in a very difficult position. Pray for civic officials to govern responsibly.
North American Cities:
With an extreme southern location and beach-laden peninsula, Florida is one of the most unique states. And South Florida—made up of Miami’s metropolitan area, the Florida Keys and surrounding towns and cities—only underscores that point of view.
Per a 2017 Forbes study, South Florida is home to 27 of the 400 richest people in America. It boasts 6 of the 20 richest “millionaire enclaves” and is home to the wealthiest city by income in the United States: Fisher Island. The region is often viewed as a 76-degree paradise, dripping in bling and boasting the best nightclubs, bay-front mansions and flashy cars. It is home to celebrities and pro athletes as well as business moguls and fashion models.
But paradoxically, cities within South Florida have a large population of citizens below the federal poverty line. Only Detroit, Cleveland, Buffalo, Milwaukee and St. Louis ranked higher in terms of citizens living at the federal government-established poverty income level.
Rich or poor, famous or not so much, one thing is certain: The people of South Florida need Christ. In this dense population zone, 78.8 percent of the population is lost.
“In South Florida, you will find some of America’s wealthiest people,” said James Peoples, South Florida’s Send Region Missionary. “At the same time, you’ll find many in extreme poverty. Both the rich and the poor believe that if they just had a little more, then they would be happy. Many in South Florida lose themselves in their materialistic pursuit and try to gain as much as possible—yet they are still unsatisfied. But the hope of Christ can change that.
“The Church can offer something beyond what money can buy, which is real hope in the good news of Christ,” adds Peoples. “Regardless of one’s financial status, anyone can receive the promise of eternal and abundant life in Christ.”
Pray for Send City Missionary-Tim Wolfe
Tim was born and raised Miami. He married Pam, his college sweetheart from Palm Beach Atlantic University. Pam and Tim have planted churches in Texas and Georgia. He loves spending time with Pam, his three adult children and son-in-law, their fifth child God brought along later, and he enjoys doing life with both believers and people far from Christ. He loves anything to do with the Miami (“the 305”), Sunday night slices of pizza with his bride, the Dolphins, Giants, Gators, Heat, working out and the beach.
Send Tim an encouraging email and let him know we are praying for him: firstname.lastname@example.org
People Groups: 93
Christian Population: 94.42%
Marked by three parallel Andean mountain ranges in the west and plains and Amazon rainforests in the east, Colombia is rich with beautiful scenery and diverse ecosystems. The fourth largest nation in South America and the only one with coastlines on both the Caribbean Sea and Pacific Ocean, it also enjoys a diverse population. Mestizos, those with both European and indigenous ethnic roots, comprise the largest group (over 50%). Three quarters of the population live in urban areas and are mostly Spanish speaking. Unfortunately, violence in Columbia has garnered more international attention in the last few decades than its natural beauty and diversity.
Since its freedom from Spain in 1813 and its formation as a country in 1831, Colombia has had a turbulent political history. In the 20th century, newly formed guerrilla and paramilitary groups began using violence to enact their political agendas. Many aligned themselves with profitable drug cartels, as Colombia is one of the world’s largest exporters of illegal drugs. The increased violence has caused significant economic and political instability, though a new constitution and governmental reforms in the last two decades have begun to loosen the cartels’ grip on Colombia. The economy is slowly growing as the country has begun to take advantage of the large oil and natural gas deposits as well as other rich natural resources within its borders. Regrettably, poverty (37%), unemployment (over 10%), and drug trafficking-related problems, including fear, continue to overwhelm Colombia’s population.
Roman Catholicism has long been a part of Colombian culture, and more than ninety percent of Colombians identify themselves as Catholic, though far fewer are practicing. Since the 1991 constitution, other denominations have been given religious freedom, and the evangelical church has grown significantly. The extremist paramilitary groups view this growth as a threat, and many have reacted with violence against the evangelical leadership. In the midst of the violence and great political changes, a growing number of national Christians are reaching out to those in their own country, and a small number are serving in other parts of the world.
- Pray for spiritual and physical protection for believers who face the threat of violence for their commitments to Christ.
- Pray for a wise and courageous government that will take a hard stance against violence, drug cartels, and corruption.
- Pray for the spiritual battle for Colombia to be won in Jesus’ name through persistent and prevailing prayer.
Population: 10,000 in Colombia
Christian Population: 1.60%
Main Religion: Ethnic Religions
In the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta of Colombia there lives a group of people named Kogi, existing somewhat closely to the way they did before Christopher Columbus arrived in the hemisphere. Their name means “jaguar” in their language. When Caribs invaded around 1000, they fled to the mountains. Their location there led to the retention of their way of life but also preserved them from the Spanish invasion.
The Kogi create their own clothing from plant to finished product. Nearly everyone wears these white clothes. They live in round huts made with stone, mud, and palm leaves. Kogi men and women all carry traditional bags, made by the women, across their shoulders. They cultivate sugar and coffee to sell. The sugar is made into a hardened brown substance.
There is a meeting hut exclusively for the men where community decisions are made. Mamas or priests are very important to the decision making process. Kogi women are seldom mistreated and are valued as being very connected to Mother Earth. When two men meet, they exchange handfuls of coca leaves.
“Aluna” or “The Great Mother” is their deity. She is the earth who is alive. A nearby mountain is known as “The Heart of the World” and the Kogi are the “Elder Brothers” who care for it. They see nature as needing protection and oppose the mistreatment of it.
Mamas are village priests who undergo strict training. Selected male children train in a dark cave for the first nine years of their lives. Mamas and the child’s mother care for these young priests inside the cave until they are ready to begin their practice in the society. It is believed that the mama can hear the words of their god to pass along to the tribe.
The Kogi believe in complementary opposites. Even wrong-doing is necessary as the complement to right. After death a soul is considered to be on a journey for nine days and nights, after which it returns to an existence alongside the living Kogi.