April 2022, Vol. 19, No. 4
Widows Receive Hope Amidst Despair, Destitution
As cases of COVID-19 rose and lockdowns kept people at home, impoverished families found themselves struggling to survive. Without work, many feared starvation. In response to the growing desperation, thousands of GFA missionaries took the initiative to feed and encourage those in need.
Caring for the Vulnerable
Among those particularly struggling have been widows and single mothers, who are often the sole breadwinners for themselves and their children. The pandemic has prevented many from earning income. In one mountainous region, GFA missionaries and pastors identified 12 women who desperately needed help during the pandemic, providing bags of rice, lentils, oil, salt and other basic supplies to fight hunger. Many of the women also had been personally affected by the virus.
One recipient, Prue, and her husband had both tested positive for the virus. Prue survived, but her husband didn’t.
“The first wave of COVID-19 took my husband from me forever,” Prue shared. “… He was very much supportive of me. But after his death, I was loved by the local church. I want to thank the church family from the bottom of my heart for the relief items I received.”
The Cries of the Helpless
Many women like Prue faced similar situations of helplessness and loss during the pandemic. When a cyclone swept through an area under lockdown from the pandemic, GFA missionaries distributed food supplies to nearly 100 needy widows.
“During the storm … the river water was overflowing, and it came all around my house,” said Palmira, one of the widows. Jesus answered Palmira’s prayer and spared her home from destruction.
“I hoped and had confidence that I will get some help from the church,” Palmira said. “I was waiting for the great God to provide [for] me. Finally, God provided [for] me.”
Other mothers had simply been abandoned.
When one GFA pastor distributed large bags of rice to 50 impoverished individuals in his area, he happened to meet Macey, who lived by herself. Her children had left her all alone, even taking her ration card for themselves.
When the pastor presented her with the rice, Macey wept.
“God has sent you to my house to feed me when I am hungry,” she said. “I now have enough rice for the whole month.”
Thanks to your support, vulnerable people, such as widows, are receiving the help they need during the pandemic.