November 2013: The “Mamans pasteurs” (as pastors’ wives are called in the Democratic Republic of Congo) were overcome by joy and an emotional time of remembering when their church organized a service of encouragement in honour of deceased pastors, with a focus on their surviving widows who are often left on their own when their husbands die. The 8 August service was organized by the Kinshasa conference of Communauté des Églises de Frères Mennonites au Congo (Congo Mennonite Brethren Church – CEFMC). Especially moved by the occasion, one widow, who had left the church, thanked God for the service, and publicly resolved to return to the church that she thought had forgotten her. Each widow was given a piece of material, a head cloth, and money for the cost of sewing the material. These gifts were sponsored by Charlotte Matsitsa and Pakisa Tshimika, daughter and son of deceased pastors in the CEFMC. Pray for this church as it continues to pray for and to share with these widows. – From a report by Muller Ndunzi and Katshing Mvwala
November 2013: Pray for Mennonites in the Philippines who are joining with others to respond to the disaster created by Typhoon Haiyan in early November. Since the congregations of Integrated Mennonite Churches, Inc. (IMC), a Mennonite World Conference member church, are all in the north, they were not directly affected by the storm. However, churches are sending donations to Peacebuilders Community, a restorative justice ministry in the Philippines. Volunteers from churches have formed a Peacebuilders Community team in Leyto province, in Ormoc City. The team arrived right after the storm to provide rapid assessment and disaster management assistance. The team is working with local pastors and congregations to help prevent conflict. “Please continue to pray for financial support for the team as well as physical, mental and emotional strength and endurance as we stay here,” wrote Regina Mondez, an IMC leader who is part of the team in Ormoc City.
November 2013: Let us give thanks for an engaged meeting where representatives of Anabaptist churches in six European countries got together to listen, share and process decisions, on the 18 & 19 October. Some of the churches shared the following requests. Arbeitsgemeinschaft Mennonitischer Brüdergemeinden in Deutschland (German Mennonite Brethren Conference) is focusing on support of smaller congregation. Please pray for congregations that are struggling because of their size. Associação dos Irmãos Menonitas de Portugal (Association of Mennonite Brethren in Portugal) shares that a major economic crisis, unemployment and many young people leaving the country to find work in other places is affecting the church. Please pray for Portugal and the MB congregations. Anabautistas, Menonitas y Hermanos en Cristo – España (Anabaptists, Mennonites and Brethren in Christ – Spain) is thankful for three new congregations who have joined: two in the island of Tenerife and another one in Barcelona.
November 2013: Pray for the people and churches in Cunene, Angola, where drought and famine are affecting many. For more information about the Mennonite church in Angola, read about the MWC Deacons’ visit.
October 2013: Pray for Mennonite Central Committee partner organization, Asociación Sembrando Semillas de Paz (Sowing Seeds of Peace Association, known as Sembrandopaz) located on the Caribbean Coast of Colombia, the founder Ricardo Esquivia Ballestas, and other community leaders, who have received threats and intimidations. One community leader, Jorge Montes, has been arrested on false charges. Click here for more information.
October 2013: Pray for the Program Oversight Committee for the MWC Assembly to be held in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania July 21-26, 2015. Registration begins August 2014 on the MWC website. The program will include rich offerings in music and worship, friendship groups, children’s and youth programming and the popular Global Church Village.
October 2013: Praise God for the life changing experience offered to young adults through several programs offered jointly by MWC and Mennonite Central Committee. One is the Young Anabaptist Mennonite Exchange Network (YAMEN!) which places young adults from MWC member churches in the Global South in other countries of the Global South for cross-cultural learning and ministry. The other program is the MWC Intern at the MCC United Nations office.
September 2013: Pray for our brothers and sisters who seek to follow Jesus in contexts of economic inequality and injustice.
September 2013: Praise God that three members of the MWC Deacons visit had a positive and eye opening time with our Angolan brothers and sisters at the beginning of September. Pray for the church of Angola, and their leadership, as they strive to deepen their Anabaptist identity and for their role in changing their country and helping their society transform out of a mentality of war. Angola continues to feel the consequences of the 27 year civil war that ended in 2002.
August 2013: Pray for the Brethren in Christ Church in Zambia as they prepare to hold a first-ever workshop for church leaders, 26 October to 1 November in Choma. Pray especially for Bishop Thuma Hamakang'andu, a member of the MWC Executive Committee, as he leads this important event.
August 2013: Pray for the members of the MWC Deacons visit to Angola. They are planning to visit our brothers and sisters in Angola in early September, but are currently facing challenges with the visa process. Pray that everything will come together and that this Deacons visit can be a time of blessing, encouragement and hope for our churches in Angola and our global community.
August 2013: Praise God for the MWC Officers who will be meeting 26-29 August, 2013 in Zimbabwe. Pray for them as they review the work of MWC and take steps to keep equipping and strengthening our global Anabaptist family.
August 2013: Join with PeaceBuilders Community, Inc. (PBCI) in giving thanks for the signing of a new wealth sharing deal, between the Peace Negotiating Panels of the Government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. May they all enjoy the positive results of this new deal and experience peace. PBCI is a Mennonite peace and reconciliation consulting group, belonging to the Integrated Mennonite Churches, Inc. of the Philippines, a member church of Mennonite World Conference. Click here to read the full statement by PBCI.
July 2013: Pray for the people of Zimbabwe they have presidential elections on 31 July. Pray for peace and transparency in the election process.
July 2013: Our brothers and sisters from the Communauté Mennonite au Congo (CMCo), DRC have asked for prayer for the ordination of five women. The ceremony for two of the five women will take place on 22 September, 2013 in Kinshasa, DRC. These two women are Swana Falanga Sidonie and Ngombe Kidinda Fabienne. Praise God for their continuing faithful service.
July 2013: Pray for the people of the province of Alberta, Canada, and the ongoing work of Mennonite Disaster Service (MDS) as they are responding to flood damaged areas in this province. Triggered by torrential rain, the extensive flooding killed at least four people and displaced more than 175,000 others. MDS is the leading Mennonite agency in response to the Alberta Flood. The MDS Alberta Unit is in conversation with local Mennonite churches and MCC to ensure a smooth and collaborative working relationship. Find the latest information on the MDS website.
July 2013: Pray for Archbishop Mar Gregorius Yohanna Ibrahim of the Syrian Orthodox Archdiocese of Aleppo and his travelling companion Archbishop Boulos Yazaji of the Greek Orthodox of Aleppo, who were taken by unknown assailants on 22 April as they returned from the northern area of Syria close to the Turkish border where they had undertaken humanitarian work in the war-torn country. From that time there has been no confirmed news from them or about them. MWC is connected to the Syrian and Greek Orthodox Archdioceses of Aleppo through the Global Christian Forum. Click here to see the website of the Global Christian Forum.