Outreach underway in Belarus despite additional oppression

By March 16, 2007

Belarus (MNN) — There are been reports the Belarusian
government is making it more difficult on Christians in the country. But, those
difficulties aren't affecting the work of a ministry team with Global Aid
Network
, or GaIN USA who's working there now.

GAIN USA's Tim Burns says the team is reaching out to people
affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster more than 20 years ago. While
Chernobyl is in the Ukraine, Burns says, "80-percent of the fallout fell
on to the southern regions of Belarus. And, the Belarusians were the most
affected by it. And, of course, they were forgotten by much of the world."

This isn't something GAIN does on their own, says Burns.
"We're partnering with local churches to go into schools and to give out
humanitarian aid to show the love of Jesus. (We want) to let these people know
that they're not forgotten and that people love them, God loves them and wants
to obviously save them from their sins."

According to Burns, working with the local church is
powerful. "When we come along it reinforces their relationship with the
government and many times it helps them out because it raises their credibility
because they say, 'Wow, these people brought in these Americans. They brought
in all this aid. It's because of this church or this organization that they're
here. So, it helps them out in the long run."

In all of their work the Gospel and humanitarian aid aren't
separated. "What this does is it lays the ground work for credibility to
be given to the Gospel message that's shared because they're fed, their warmed,
their loved, they know that and now they can hear about the love of Christ and
it really opens the door for that."

GAIN USA is recruiting teams for similar trips around the
world.

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