Bangladesh (MNN) — Monsoon-swollen
rivers in Bangladesh burst their banks. The waters submerged thousands of villages, and much of the
farmland is ruined.
Since the end of July,
39 of the country's 64 districts have been affected.
Non-Government Organization (NGO) reports show
that nearly 2.5 million people have been marooned or displaced by floods
in Bangladesh, most
of them for the second time in just two months.
The Bangladesh Agriculture Ministry
estimates crop damage to be $290 million, but infrastructure costs and damages
are still being assessed. Just
as the situation appeared to have stabilized and was improving somewhat, the
region got hit with even more heavy rain.
Audio Scripture Ministries' Chad VandenBosch says ASM helped to establish a studio here in the
late 80's and have been holding Scripture listening programs there ever since. ASM just
trained studio technicians there when the disaster hit. The churches at Shatir Bani then became relief centers. "People would come from all over
and visit the churches that they set up as distribution centers. And as part of
those distributions, they would also distribute Scripture cassettes and other
audio resources. So what I saw while I was there was that more people are
actually coming to the church."
VandenBosch says the studio will be busy providing new
Scripture cassettes to replace worn out tapes. Rather than the floods slowing down this work,
they find themselves looking at a new network of churches.
"Listening groups have started, and they've been having
Bible studies. In areas where they don't
have enough dry land to get together, they would tie boats together. People
would come from their houses and bring their boats or whatever they could float
on, and they would tie them up together and listen to the Scriptures,
and they would have a worship time."
Pray for the staff as
they use the recording studio through radio and evaluate projects and equipment
for the future. Pray for the lives of those in Bangladesh that will be
touched by Scripture recordings from Shantir Bani.