March 2009: Finding Hope and Support in Challenging Times

Lidia is used to working hard in the fields of Colombia to support herself and her daughter, Marcela. Though for some time now, Lidia has not been able to work in the fields and cannot find another job. Colombia’s violence and upheaval have devastated and displaced many, especially women.

March 2009 Bulletin Insert Format [PDF]
Marzo 2009 en español

 

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Psalms 46:1

Lidia is used to working hard in the fields of Colombia to support herself and her daughter, Marcela. Though for some time now, Lidia has not been able to work in the fields and cannot find another job. Colombia's violence and upheaval have devastated and displaced many, especially women. Recently, Lidia heard about the Council of Evangelical Churches of Colombia (CEDECOL), a Global Ministries partner, which has the Women's Network. The Network is a refuge for Lidia and other displaced women and their families offering workshops and activities to help build greater self-esteem, and provides funding for micro businesses.

Lidia has a strong Christian identity which is part of the reason she agreed to raise Marcela when asked to be her foster mother. Marcela was four years old then. Marcela's family was forced to leave their farm and move to a city where they sought work on nearby farms. Shortly after their arrival the husband was assassinated. After the death of her husband, Marcela's birth mother appeared at Lidia's home and requested the return of her now nine year old daughter.  The Women's Network accompanied Lidia during this very difficult time. Through prayer and support, the Network counseled Lidia as to where she should go for help and what she could do to protect herself. At last, after much suffering and conflict, the birth mother opted to grant custody of Marcela to Lidia. 

Lidia sees God at work and now prays along with the Women's Network, for all of the women who hold close the hope of one day returning to their farms, their land, and to the work and community life they have always known. 

We pray for CEDECOL and the individuals who find their voice and vocation through the Women's Network.

Michael Joseph, a Global Ministries missionary, serves the Restoration, Life and Peace Commission of the Council of Evangelical Churches  of Colombia (CEDECOL) providing pastoral critical presence to church leaders and lay people who are living in life-threatening situations.