Prayers for East Timor: Matthew 20:1-16
In this time of high unemployment in the USA, today's text from Matthew 20 reminds us that just as today, when Jesus walked the earth people struggled to eak out a living. In Jesus' time, a denarius was a daily wage that would sustain a subsistence existence.
In this story of the vineyard owner, the image of (presumably) men standing around marketplaces, seemingly with nothing else to do, is not unlike so many cities around the world today. Go to East Timor or any developing country and you will find young, usually brown or black, men hanging around the streets. Just waiting for something to do.
In the small Southeast Asian nation of East Timor, which is barely 10 years into its independence, poverty is the rule. A “subsistence” wage in East Timor allows you to buy enough rice and vegetables to feed your family. A subsistence existence in East Timor is devoid of television, and of fast food restaurants. It means you sleep on a bamboo bed with no mattress, and that you are cold at night if you live in the mountains.
In prayer today, please remember the people of East Timor. Remember especially the malnourished children, and pray for the Clinic Imanuel staff who provide daily meals for some of them. Remember the youth of East Timor, most of whom face graduation from high school with little prospect of meaningful work. Finally, pray for the leadership of our partner church, the Protestant Church of East Timor, as they continue to find their way to serve in Jesus' name.
Mission Moment from East Timor:
There is a very small church in a very small country in a place very, very far from America. And YOU are connected to it. The place is an island in Southeast Asia, and our partner church there is the Protestant Church of East Timor.
As a Global Ministries missionary, I work in a primary care clinic in Lospalos, a remote town in the far eastern part of East Timor. Clinic Imanuel is one of few health care facilities in the district. The clinic is a ministry of the Protestant Church, and an integral part of the health care system in Lospalos. The clinic provides medical care free of charge for everyone, young and old. An in-house lab provides diagnostic testing for malaria and tuberculosis. Every day TB patients come to take their medication, and the disease continues to be a threat to life and health for so many here. Patients come with dog bites, with burns after spilling boiling water or hot oil on themselves, with machete wounds and other traumatic injuries from daily life in the village. Every day, staff cook a protein-rich hot meal for our nutrition program, which is improving the health of the children who attend regularly. The clinic also provides prenatal care and family planning counseling. Patients come with colds and flus, with backaches, with diarrhea and worms. Sometimes, they just come because they are angry, or sad, and need consolation. In a typical month, the clinic staff of just five women and myself, attend 1,200 to 1,500 patient visits.
Tom, my husband, splits his mission time managing the clinic facility and building capacity of the pastors locally and at the Synod. Because of YOU, Global Ministries can continue to send missionaries to places like East Timor. We ask for your continued prayers for our work here, and also for your generous support so that we may use our time and talents to continue to do God's work.
(Prayer and Mission Moment by Monica and Tom Liddle)
Video Resources on East Timor:
· Interview with Tom and Monica Liddle: http://globalministries.org/resources/multimedia-resources/videos/video-mission-moments/east-timor-liddle.html
· Interview with John Campbell-Nelson: http://globalministries.org/resources/multimedia-resources/videos/video-mission-moments/eastern-indonesia-pastoral.html
Global Ministries Partners in East Timor:
The Protestant Church of East Timor (IPTL): represents the Reformed Church presence in a predominantly Roman Catholic country in Southeast Asia.
Global Ministries Missionaries in East Timor:
· Tom Liddle, a member of Peace United Church of Christ, Duluth, Minnesota, serves with the Protestant Church of East Timor (IPTL). He works as a facilitator in the IPTL's program for strengthening congregations and continuing education of pastors.
· Monica Liddle, a member of Peace United Church of Christ, Duluth, Minnesota, serves with the Protestant Church of East Timor (IPTL). She works as a naturopathic doctor in the clinic in Lospalos, which is run by FUSONA, the relief and development wing of the IPTL. Monica's appointment is supported by One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS).
· Carlos Madrazo, a member of Bethany United Church of Christ, Seattle, Washington, serves the Protestant Church of East Timor (IPTL). He works as an adviser on institutional capacity building, resources and curriculum development with ITPL and its two related foundations - Foundasaun Didache (for the Lisa Dila Vocational High School) and Foundation Social Naroman (engaged in relief and development).
For more info on East Timor: http://globalministries.org/sasia/countries/east-timor/
Pray for Partners without Global Ministries Mission Personnel: Lithuania
For more info on Lithuania: http://globalministries.org/mee/countries/lithuania/