Statement from Dr. David M. Griffis: March 31, 2020
My heart has been touched deeply today and I want to share something about Covid-19 and the rest of the world that you will probably not hear on American News, at least I haven’t. I offer these pictures from Sri Lanka and India as a backdrop.
Toward the end of January of this year Judy and I, along with Andrew Binda, Field Director for Asia, and his wife Valerie visited Sri Lanka to dedicate the new National Offices and to minister in the church there and then on to India to visit the El Shadai Boys Rescue Home, where Judy had raised a lot of funds to develop Jax’s goat farm, named in honor of our special needs grandson Jax, to help feed and sustain the boys living there. We also would visit church facilities and interact with a number of ministers there.
The sheer populations of Asia are staggering and life is hard since poverty and unsanitary conditions are everywhere and unfortunately often overlooked by bastions of wealth and opulence. Religion abounds, while Christ and Christians remain the minority and often a persecuted minority. But their joy, courage and New Testament Book of Acts boldness for Christ is astounding. I was blessed beyond measure to be around them.
Today, at my request, I received detailed reports from all five of our Field Directors on the effects of the Covid-19 outbreak in their region. All areas are suffering, some more than others. Asia and Europe have been hit particularly hard. But in Asia the majority work for day wages. Now they have no money, little food, very limited medical care in many areas. In the picture you see of the El Shadai Boys Rescue Home group, all but 7 have been sent back to their guardians, some of whom, had sent the boys there or they had originally been removed from those homes. These little boys were so happy at El Shadai, with the rooms, the farm, their school, the camaraderie, and daily lessons from the Bible. Covid-19 has disrupted that beauty.
This is but one story. In another country I cannot name, one of our beautiful orphanages cannot buy food, though they have the money, because they are Christian and that government has little regard for Christianity or it’s institutions, so the government will not permit their food purchases. These are but two of thousands of stories occurring throughout the world.
Now the good news, around the world in the Church of God, and I daresay, throughout much of evangelical Christianity, where it is still allowed Christians in tiny groups are meeting in homes, their yards, rooftops and even in fields and forests. Where possible technology is used to tell Christ’s story. The Gospel is still preached, salvations and healings are occurring in the midst of great suffering. The Book of Acts is alive and booming in the 21st Century. Jesus’s Bride, the Church of the Living God is alive and radiantly beautiful.