There are over 109 million people living in the Philippines—that’s over 2½ times the population of California living in an area slightly larger than the…
Every day, children from impoverished homes are placed in dangerous situations. In Albania, children are forced by their families to beg on the streets. In Ethiopia, young boys line the streets with shoe-shining carts to earn a small income. In El Salvador, children search garbage dumps for items they can recycle.
In Thailand, families have sent their children to temporarily live and work in wealthy homes only to never see them again. There is nowhere in the world that is safe from human trafficking, and children experiencing extreme poverty are especially vulnerable to this.
With the help of our in-country partners at ZOE International, local pastors in Thailand are working diligently to help families facing this type of situation. When local pastors visit these families with an offering of food, their need to resort to extreme measures to provide for their families is decreased.
Pastor Pradit had been ministering to his local community for thirteen years prior to partnering with Children’s Hunger Fund in 2014. In that time, his ministry had brought nine new believers to his church. Just one year after he began delivering Food Paks as a part of his outreach, he had over 100 adults and over 200 children at his church.
Recently, a small group of Children’s Hunger Fund staff and close friends of the ministry were able to visit Thailand, meet some of our Mercy Network pastors and in-country partners, and witness the Food Pak ministry.
Nura and her parents live in the community where Pastor Pradit serves. Like many families in the area, their home is built on stilts to withstand flooding during monsoon season. During the hot season, families often retreat to the space beneath their homes to escape the heat. This is where our team met with them.
It was evident to the staff and friends witnessing the interaction that Pastor Pradit had a very close relationship with the family. Though he had shared the gospel with them before, during this visit, Nura and both of her parents were moved by the Holy Spirit and prayed with Pastor Pradit to accept Jesus into their hearts.
Relationship is central to mercy ministry, and that is so apparent in how Pastor Pradit serves his community. He understands that, in order to bring about a change in their lives, their hearts had to change first.
It was a blessing to watch pastors care for their community,” shared Savannah Nix, a CHF staff member who attended the trip, “to enter into homes where they had built relationships and demonstrate such love and care to people. Their consistency, their joy, and their prayers were all bearing witness to God and pointing people back to Christ. It was inspiring to watch their faithfulness to the gospel, despite the challenges that they faced.
In another part of Chiang Mai, there was a slum community primarily made up of refugees from Laos and Myanmar. For years, Pastor Pradit ministered to this community, delivering food, building relationships, and sharing the gospel. When people in the neighboring community complained to the government about the slum neighborhood, the Thai government decided to bulldoze the entire area, dispersing the population that was living there.
Since the destruction of the slum community, Pastor Pradit and members of his church have been working diligently to reconnect with the families who had been forced to relocate.
They share the same goal as our partners at ZOE International, to provide a way for families to care for their children and keep them out of unsafe situations.
Your prayer and support are an enormous encouragement to Pastor Pradit and the rest of our partners around the world. In our communications with both domestic and international partners, we regularly hear their gratitude for the support provided by our friends and supporters. These church partners are on the frontlines of the ministry of CHF, and they (and we) are so thankful for your involvement.