The Global Mission office of the Church of the Brethren has instituted a new communication tool named Country Advisory Teams (CATs). These teams are a way for the Global Mission leadership to stay informed and better understand each country or region where Church of the Brethren partners are involved.
The latest grants from two Church of the Brethren funds–the Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) and the Global Food Initiative (GFI)–have been given to Brethren Disaster Ministries work following flooding in the area of Columbia, S.C.; the church’s mission in South Sudan, where staff are responding to needs of people affected by the country’s civil war; the Shalom Ministry for Reconciliation in the Democratic Republic of Congo serving people affected by conflict; and community gardens related to Church of the Brethren congregations.
UPDATES FROM GLOBAL MISSION AND SERVICE
1) Brethren compound in South Sudan is looted by security forces
2) Linda and Robert Shank to stay in the US for the summer
In a concerted effort identifying the need to work on hunger and famine relief, a number of Christian groups in the US and internationally have announced a season of prayer and fasting that began on Sunday, May 21. According to the United Nations and other experts, 20 million people are at risk of starvation in four regions–northeastern Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia, and Yemen–and millions more are suffering from drought and food shortages.
More people face famine today than at any time in modern history, with 20 million people at risk of starvation and millions more suffering drought and food shortages. In light of this, the All Africa Conference of Churches and the World Council of Churches invite us to take part in a Global Day of Prayer to End Famine on May 21.
Brethren Disaster Ministries and the Global Food Initiative recently worked together to send representatives from Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria), representatives from South Sudan, and a Church of the Brethren representative from the United States to Kenya to receive training in a program called Farming God’s Way with an organization called Care of Creation, Kenya.
The Church of the Brethren Mission and Ministry Board has approved the release of $500,000 from the Emergency Disaster Fund to support Nigeria Crisis Response programing. The Nigeria Crisis Response is a joint effort of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria with the Church of the Brethren’s Global Mission and Service and Brethren Disaster Ministries.
Grants from the Church of the Brethren’s Emergency Disaster Fund support rebuilding projects in South Carolina and Detroit, as well as disaster relief work in South Sudan.
As the situation in South Sudan deteriorates, with recent eruption of renewed armed conflict and United Nations reports that 4.8 million people face food shortages, the Church of the Brethren has donated a vehicle to aid staff in food distribution and other relief work.
Brethren Disaster Ministries staff have directed grants from the Church of the Brethren’s Emergency Disaster Fund to a variety of projects in recent weeks. Among them are a bridge rebuilding project in West Virginia, assistance for refugees from Burundi living in Rwanda, assistance for people displaced by violence in the DR Congo, a Disaster Recovery Support Initiative aiding a longterm recovery group in South Carolina, food assistance in South Sudan, and aid for Haitian migrants returning to Haiti from the Dominican Republic. These grants total $85,950.