Nepal (EFCA) — When the Church responds to crises in love, even to those who despise, oppress or oppose, God opens doors.
“For fifteen years, since we started the church on this property, we have had opposition from the community,“ said one Nepali pastor. “They have thrown stones at our house and church. While building the church building, I was taken in by the police.”
Yet, the earthquake and this church’s response, one of love and care for the community, has started a change.
Immediately after the quake, no one wanted to be inside their block home with all of the after shocks, so the church offered what it had to the community: a safe open space. “We had over 70 families living in the church yard. We still have a few, including our family. We shared our food, and as we got access to relief supplies, gave them to the people living with us.” he continued. One family that had been leading community opposition came and stayed on the property. “We are starting to be accepted by our neighbors,“ the pastor concluded.
In another town, the church also experienced persecution. Last Christmas, people came to the church with torches to burn it. After prayer, through conversation and with pleading, the crowd relented. After the earthquake, the church responded with relief supplies like food, oil, and tarps. This pastor said, “Now neighbors say, ‘Church is our friend. When we had need after the earthquake, you helped us.’”
Disciple-making is a process. Sometimes it starts with stone clearing: removing barriers, obstacles, and stereotypes that preclude people’s willingness to hear and experience good news and God’s incomparable love and grace.
Pray for continued openness, as the churches of Nepal continue to reach out to their neighbors and ask the Lord who He might have in their lives, using believers as stone clearers for them.
Learn more about ReachGlobal’s Nepal earthquake response. To date, God’s people have given over $230,000 (90%) towards the initial response goal of $250,000 to help Nepal, but there’s more to do. Consider helping these and other Nepali churches reach out to their community.