Today’s update is more in the form of a prayer request and so won’t be long. I received a call from Pastor R and need to pass on the information he related to me.
Many of us around the world have been experiencing uncommon weather patterns. It is common to have hot and cold weather in their seasons but something that many places around the world are experiencing are what they are labeling, 100-500-1000 year storms, and other weather anomalies that are often very hard to deal with. This is especially the case for the most vulnerable populations. This includes those living in refugee camps.
In addition to the weather issues are the international conflicts which only exasperate the already difficult circumstances. Pastor R told me that the hospital he is in has been without any available gas and so there is no heat in the building. This is a serious issue in a hospital. Pastor R suffers from diabetes and so has a hard time staying warm as it is.
The refugee camps, particularly in the northern areas, have been hit with unrelenting stormy weather. This always causes tents to be damaged or blown down entirely. Not only that, but there is no way of keeping the puddling or running water outside the tents from going inside. Eventually, mattresses, clothing, food, and most everything else gets soaked. There have been times in the last couple weeks when the temperature dropped to below freezing at night and people were found covered in ice and frozen. Some were found in time and were revived. Others were not so fortunate and had already perished.
From the reports that were received in the last few days, the HOB missionaries repaired or reset at least 6,000 family tents. As the missionary teams worked in their designated locations they came across approximately 600 people who were covered in ice and freezing. The way the missionaries described the situations they came across, the victims would likely not have survived if they had not been revived. Right now there is not much to distribute to the needy but HOB does its best to provide the people with their Oregano tea mixture. The people are very vulnerable to winter flu’s, viruses, and this year, cholera. This is especially the case when they are so very exposed to the elements.
In closing this short report, the House of Blessing continues to depend on your prayers. Syria has at least 15 million displaced people, and although HOB does not have a presence in all of the camps, they are embedded in quite a number and are attempting to aid hundreds of thousands of them. It is very difficult this year and there are many weeks of winter left to endure before spring arrives. HOB missionaries are doing the best they can to help as many as they can—not only with their tents, but also in getting their things dried out, if possible. There is also a serious shortage of food. There are some herbs and grasses that can be harvested but that is not enough for them to survive on. We serve a big God and He knows humans are flesh and blood. Let’s pray for the HOB missionaries as they do their best to minister to the needs of the refugees. One thing they do, whether they have anything to distribute to the refugees or not, is tell them the Good News of the Gospel. The harvest continues to come in large numbers. God is good!
As I shared at the beginning of this update, Pastor R, and all other patients in the hospital he is in, have no heat at this time. Medicines are also not coming in as they should. Pastor R has, however, lived by faith for many years and he is certainly not going to change his ways now. But that said, the situation is not good…not good at all. Thank you all for your prayers.
Forever in His Service,