This Friday, October 21st, IDES' annual Gift Catalog newsletter will be published.
Within it, you will find dozens of "gift" items that faithful supporters just like you provide for families in need around the world every single year. These aren't ordinary gift items like we are used to, like restaurant gift cards, Yankee candles, or that new power tool we've had our eye on. Instead, they are items that will help the families and communities we serve to stand on their own two feet, such as clean-water wells, seeds for farming, and livestock animals. What kind of difference do these items make? We're glad you asked!
Week after week, we receive after-action reports from the mission workers we partner with around the world describing the incredible impact these gifts make on the lives of those who receive them.
Recently in India, we were blessed with the opportunity to provide livestock animals for a predominantly Hindu village of needy and marginalized families. The generous gift opened doors for the Gospel to be shared. As they distributed the animals, they also preached the Gospel. Along the way, they met a Hindu priest who had been fulfilling his duties in the Hindu temple for over 20 years--he had never heard of Jesus Christ. After hearing the good news, and witnessing his community be blessed with the animals, the priest miraculously decided to place his faith in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior!
"Thank you for your partnership to support the widows , persecuted sisters , and untouchables in India through International Disaster Emergency Service..." our partner in India said. "The funds were used prayerfully and already purchased 30 water buffalo and 60 sheep and distributed to our people to use it for development in their life and to become self dependent...[We pray that they] respect and have faith in our Lord Jesus Christ."
Each year, IDES surveys our mission partners to inquire which gift items would be the most useful and most helpful to their ministries in their communities. The items that are chosen are specifically designed to be a hand-UP, rather than just a hand-out. It is our goal to assist these communities in becoming self-sustainable by providing these gifts in Jesus' name.
In Myanmar, we were blessed with the opportunity to dig several clean-water wells using designated gift-catalog donations. In many countries, clean water is extremely difficult to come by. Some villages settle for dirty water that they gather from open streams or seepage ponds, which leads to multiple health problems and a higher chance of disease. But, thanks to your generosity, we can prevent these problems by digging clean-water wells.
"Now, the villages of around 620 people get sufficient clean water for their daily living. They are no longer will thirsty anymore and hope to be healthier as they are now getting clean water," our partner in Myanmar said.
Again, the blessing doesn't stop at just the physical gift. Myanmar is a predominantly Buddhist country. These items given in God's love often lead to deep spiritual change in the hearts of those being served. One of the other pastors in Myanmar reported that, “there are more people coming to Church worship as they experience God’s love through the well at the Church property. And one women from the village said there is a 'living water' at Church that save their physical and spiritual needs. So, she and her husband were baptized!”
Praise God! By His grace, we get to rewrite these stories of hope together for our brothers and sisters in need around the world.
As we approach the holiday season in the U.S., we challenge you and your family to go against the status-quo. Consider giving a gift that will lead to someone in need experiencing and accepting the love of Jesus Christ. Once you receive your copy of the IDES Gift Catalog, try to imagine yourself in "their shoes," then pick the item that you believe will make the biggest difference for a suffering family on the other side of the world.
To order a free hard copy of the Gift Catalog, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, call us at 317-773-4111, or fill out the contact form by clicking the button below.
To see the Online version of the Gift Catalog, click the other button below.