The outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has had a dramatic impact on people all over the world.  Governments are attempting to control the spread through bans on public meetings, travel restrictions, quarantines, etc.  While the specific measures differ by country and locality, the entire world is affected, including missionaries.

Effects of COVID-19 on GBBI ministries

Philippines:

7/23/2021 – Carlo and Elma Paña, GBBI missionaries near Cebu City, Philippines, have been admitted to the hospital with serious cases of COVID.  They are both in stable condition, but are still in serious condition.  In addition, they are incurring some high medical bills.  Please pray and if you can help financially, please use the Donate button above or send checks to the mission address.

1/17/2021 – Carlo and Elma Paña, GBBI missionaries near Cebu City, Philippines, report:

From the pandemic month of March we have been staying home most of the time because of lock down. Charael our son has been our purchaser for essential needs because we’re not allowed to go to the grocery stores in the mall. We can only buy medicine at the pharmacy. Many people were complaining because there are no more jobs. Charael also has no job. The government gives assistance but it is not enough for a big family. We thank God that He provided our essentials.

Since the month of September we’re allowed to go out for gatherings like going to church, prayers, meetings but only at 10% attendance and following protocols like face masks, shields and social distancing is a must. Those who violate the IATF protocol will be arrested or pay big fines. So we must be very careful.

5/19/2020  Steve Indino, GBBI missionary in the Philippines, reports: 

I continue to be amazed on how God has continued to bless and shower me with all His Grace in this time of crisis.

As I have reported the previous month, my ministry has taken a major hit from what is happening. I even had my birthday last April 27 in quarantine which was a new experience.

Not being able to do the ministry we had started and work out the new plans were both mentally and spiritually hard on me.

But these past months the Lord has opened a different door and given me the opportunity to do ministry on another plane. Since we cannot go out our homes and move to different places, I decided to do ministry from home. I, together with my father, have started a YouTube channel named GodlyPsyched. In this channel we have made different contents, such as Preaching, Bible Study, Podcasts, Gospel animations, mental health awareness videos, Christian song covers with young people, and more. As of now we have videos in 3 different languages, English, Cebuano (Filipino) and Bahasa
Indonesia. As the days go by we are still learning to work on video editing and how to improve our contents.

The plans that I have previously shared on my previous letters are still there, we are waiting for everything to go back to normal. This year I am supposed to finish my schooling and graduate by October but right now school is on a halt.

It has been very hard not being able to continue my ministry in mental health awareness, Bible studies, community ministry, and evangelism. As always God is faithful in supplying all our needs. I am thankful that He never fails to show His love for us! I am very grateful for all the prayers and supports, right now I need it more than ever.

Please continue to pray for me and support my ministry!

Thailand:

 

6/2/2021 – Zamley and Grace Sausa, GBBI missionaries in Chonburi, report:

Thailand is on its 3rd wave and it’s getting worse every day according to the daily data. Government is closed; other establishments and schools are closed, too. Gathering is also forbidden and our worship service is online since the government  imposed their restrictions. This month schools are online and we also need to report to our respective schools.

1/13/2021 – Zamley and Grace Sausa, GBBI missionaries in Chonburi, report:

Thailand is struggling once again to contain Covid-19. Schools are closed. Some establishments are forbidden to open. Emotions ran high at a number of district offices where residents of eastern provinces, which had been declared maximum and strict covid-19 control, were seen queuing for hours to get a permit to travel. Until the curb is lifted, residents of those provinces are only allowed to travel to other regions for essential and/or emergency purposes.

The strict implementation will last until the 31st of January depending on the situation. Churches are closed but we can still do visitation house to house with limited persons and also online worship. If things work out in February, Thailand could possibly go back to its new normal again. Please continue to pray for everyone of us.

A Closed Country:

8/4/2020 – Please continue to pray for the daughters of “Paul” and “Sarah”.  They had tests this week and one of the girls tested positive for COVID-19.  She has been in self-quarantine for 19 days and now has only a runny nose.

7/31/2020 – Please pray for the daughters of “Paul” and “Sarah” who were sick with fever.  One of the girls’ friends was positive for COVID-19.  They are feeling better now, but are getting tested to see if it was COVID-19.

7/21/2020 – “Paul” and “Sarah” had been planning to visit the US this year to visit churches and raise funds for their growing ministry.  Unfortunately, they will be unable to get visas due to COVID-19 restrictions and will plan to come to the US in 2021.

5/19/2020 – “Paul” and “Sarah” gave the following praise report:

Last time I had mentioned that ██████ is in lockdown but the government has removed the lockdown because there are no new cases of COVID-19 in the country. This means that we can continue to do the ministry and resume our corporate worship in the church. However, schools are still closed until end of May 2020. We don’t have our teaching jobs back yet.

Nigeria:

6/17/2020 – Princeton Waters reports:

In our last year Bible conference in Jos, it was decided that this year’s conference will be held in a different city and Benin City was chosen. A planning committee was inaugurated and started work immediately. Work has reached advanced level for this year’s conference. The Covid 19 is a game changer; however, we are still hoping that things will normalize before the date of the conference which is in November 2020. Exact date yet to be decided. For the past two years we have Pastor Richard Church come and he is such a blessing to us. But with the situation on ground it will be better to start thinking about how he or someone else will come. The planning committee is really working hard and we are expecting 300-400 pastors this year.

5/6/2020 – Princeton Waters reports:

Some salient points about the Wuhan virus pandemic:

  • Population: 200 million
  • Samples tested to date: 18,536 representing 0.009%  of our population
  • Confirmed cases: 2, 802 which is 15% of total samples tested
  • Active cases: 2,292 representing 12% of total samples tested and 82% of confirmed cases
  • Discharged cases: 417 representing 2% of samples tested and 15% of confirmed cases
  • Deaths: 93 which is 0.5% of all samples and 3.3 % of confirmed cases.

We are sitting on a keg of gun powder…

From this analysis it can be inferred that there are more unidentified cases of Wuhan virus in the population, even though I cannot confirm this,  but our test coverage is grossly inadequate and extremely low.

The economic effect of the Covid19 lockdown is been felt more and more everyday. 

Another issue here is the Islamic factor in handling the Covid19 issue. All the medical procedures of handling a victim they are saying are un-Islamic.

The government have imposed a curfew. Also, inter-state transport is closed and this has a great impact on the life of people.

Cultural trends, beliefs and systems are not helping matters either. For example, many people in the rural areas believe the Covid19 is a disease for city dwellers.  Some said it is for the rich and highly placed people and not for the poor.

On the spiritual front, some people are still thinking that it is a punishment from God because of our sins.  Crazy prophecies from the pento-charismatic circles are still ongoing about the Covid19. Some citing dates that it will be finished, some telling people to do one thing or the other. One incident I find bizzare is the one which some Pastors are telling people to open certain chapters  of the Bible and they will find strands of human hairs, they should take it and boil it and drink as cure and protection for Covid19!

The good thing is that people are open to hear the Gospel. We have been sharing the gospel with many people through social media channels.  The response is very good.

On a sad note I want to end this by reporting the death of one of our grace friends who died in simply in his sleep not long ago.
 
Remember Waters had mild pneumonia and he has been treated and he is getting better.

Papua New Guinea:

6/2/2020 – Wesley Tobon, GBBI missionary in the city of Vanimo, reports that effects from COVID are limited with only 8 positive cases.

USA:

3/13/2020 – The planned trip by several GBBI board members to Southeast Asia in April has been cancelled.

COVID-19 Prayer Requests and Updates

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The outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has had a dramatic impact on people all over the world.  Governments are attempting to control the spread through bans on public meetings, travel restrictions, quarantines, etc.  While the specific measures differ by country and locality, the entire world is affected, including missionaries.

 

COVID-19 Medical Fund

In anticipation of COVID-19 infections among our missionaries and the churches where they minister, we have started a relief fund.  Money from this fund will be used only for medical treatment of confirmed cases of COVID-19 where there is a clear financial need. As a donor, you will receive an email update whenever money is distributed from this fund to give you specific details about the recipient. At this time we are trying to raise $2,000.
COVID-19 Medical Fund - $130 Raised - $2,000 Goal
$130 Raised - $2,000 Needed 6.5%

Donations by Mail

Checks can be sent to the mission address:

GBBI
1732 State Highway 13
Friendship, WI 53934

Make your check payable to GBBI and note that it is for our COVID-19 Fund.