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

Thailand:

 

2/9/2022 – Zamley and Grace Sausa, GBBI missionaries in Chonburi, report:

Thailand reported 13,182 new confirmed cases: 139 from abroad, 13,043 from local transmission, with 24 deaths reported, making a total of 2,531,051 infections detected and 22,344 deaths

New Confirmed Cases: 13,182
Cumulative number of cases: 2,531,051 (+13,182)
Recoveries: 2,409,877 (+8,571)
Receiving medical treatments: 98,830
Fatalities: 22,344 (+24)
Cumulative number of vaccinations: 117,989,818

Many schools are still in a hybrid situation. They allow few students to come to school and we have online classes while doing hybrid onsite classes. This kind of set up is very tiring on the part of the teachers but what can we do? Our part is to abide and understand the whole situation. Many Filipinos went home, as well as natives. Maybe they felt bored or tired of the situation. We cannot do public worship because our place is too small to practice social distancing so we keep online virtual worship.

 

10/22/2021 – Zamley and Grace Sausa, GBBI missionaries in Chonburi, report:

Thailand logged 9,930 new Covid-19 cases and 97 more fatalities during the previous 24 hours, the Public Health Ministry announced on Monday morning.

There were 9,568 cases in the general population and 362 among prison inmates. On Sunday, 12,336 Covid-19 patients were discharged from hospitals after recovering from the coronavirus.

Although new cases in the country dropped below 10,000 again and deaths numbered fewer than 100, the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) on Monday afternoon reiterated concerns about the situation on southern provinces, including those in the far South.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand released a slew of press releases yesterday declaring a broad revision to Sandbox and entry programs and making it easier for international travelers to enter Thailand. The two biggest revisions that just went into effect are the abolishment of an approved country list for travelers to arrive from, and shortening arrival quarantine times from 14 days to just one week.

Nigeria:

12/23/2021 – After returning home, Richard Church reports:

Thank you for praying for me during my extended stay in Nigeria.

I was able to get a letter from a doctor in Nigeria certifying that I was no longer infectious from COVID-19.  I don’t know whether I was actually infected, or whether the PCR test result was a false positive.  If I was infected, it must have been a very mild (almost imperceptible) case.  Either way, I met the conditions from the CDC to be cleared for travel and I am thankful to Dr. Blessing Aga for providing me with the letter.  I did have a few problems in Abuja and in Istanbul with having that letter accepted, as not all airline personnel were clear on the current travel rules from the US government.  But after a lot of waiting in both airports, I was cleared for travel and made it home early Tuesday morning.

12/16/2021 – After a successful Bible conference and ministry in Nigeria with Princeton Waters, Richard Church reports:

I was scheduled to fly out of Abuja on December 15.  However, my pre-departure COVID test came back positive and I will not be able to fly until I test negative and am cleared by a doctor.  I’m staying at a hotel and I don’t really feel sick, except for a scratchy throat, so I am hoping that things clear up fairly quickly so that I can be home before Christmas.  I appreciate your prayers for me as I figure out my next steps and for my family as they wait for my return.

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.

A Closed Country:

10/1/2021 – “Paul” and “Sarah” report:

The government has ordered a lockdown since April 2021, and almost all of the jobsites specially schools have been closed for 5 months now. Our brethren here are in need of your help and prayers. They are in need of basic support like rice and groceries. If you can spare a little amount that would impact their life.

If you would like to help with this need, you can use the Donate button at the top of this page and designate your gift for “Paul and Sarah”.

8/17/2021 – “Paul” and “Sarah” report:

Our country is still under lockdown situation, although Covid 19 case isn’t increasing rapidly. Offices, stores, and other establishment are open but they must follow certain protocol prescribe by the government. Kindergarten schools, elementary and high school aren’t open yet. Gathering are allowed but very limited people and follow certain rules.

Our ministry now is on hold because of this pandemic. Our international service is still close except for our local service. My local leader is still doing Sunday service on his small group ministry.

Philippines:

9/3/2021 – We are sad to report that Pastor Carlo Paña is also now with the Lord after a long battle with COVID.  Thank you for so many who prayed and helped to meet the medical expenses.  Earlier this week we held an online memorial service for the Paña’s, which you can view on Facebook.

8/15/2021 – Please continue to pray for Pastor Carlo Paña who is still hospitalized and in serious condition.

8/2/2021 – We are sad to report that Elma Paña has passed away and is now with the Lord.  Please pray for the Lord’s comfort for Pastor Carlo and their son Charael.  We thank the Lord for Elma’s many years of faithful service and we all will miss her greatly.

Pastor Carlo is still in the hospital and in serious condition.

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.

Indonesia:

8/17/2021 – Ella Indino has recovered and is home from the hospital.

8/2/2021 – Ella Indino, missionary in Manado, has been admitted to the hospital with a confirmed case of COVID-19.  Ella is very weak and tired.

Mario and Ella have been apart for 18 months, with Mario in the Philippines and Ella in Indonesia.  COVID restrictions have made travel between the two countries impossible.  But Mario is hopeful that he will be able to get a visa on humanitarian grounds, based on Ella’s condition.  Please pray for Mario and Ella and the rest of the Indino family.

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.

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.