(Voice of the Persecuted) Too many have been forced from their homes, villages, even countries from the violence and threats against them. Many are left with no means to fend for themselves. Without the love and support of caring hearts, they go hungry, homeless and often succumb to illness and disease. Each day we hear, “Please give us a chance” from those who are suffering for Christ. They cry, “Please help us”.
The picture above reflects the ongoing suffering many experience through persecution. When John and his family fled from their home seeking freedom from persecution, they faced a new battle and ongoing suffering in Thailand. Because his father is prevented from legally working, there was no money to take his son for much needed medical treatment. Unfortunately, his hands became worse and he developed a severe infection. This little boy experienced great pain and suffering. By the time treatment was finally provided, John had to spend 10 days in the hospital. How heartbreaking it progressed to this point before someone provided the funds to care for this child. Infections like John’s are common and likely due to a lack of nutrition and and the inability to purchase hygiene products. Many find it hard to even buy a toothbrush.
The situation for this family has not changed. John and his 2 siblings continue to go underfed. From month to month, his parents wonder how much longer they will have a roof over their heads or be forced out on the streets. Families like John’s suffer silently while waiting on the UNHCR asylum process which takes years. A staggering amount of these Pakistani Christians suffer to the extreme. They receive very little or no help to sustain and help them endure the painfully long wait to be moved to a welcoming nation. Many parents can’t even buy milk and diapers for their babies. Sadly, too few are trying to cover their needs. The UNHCR does not have a program to care for their needs, nor can they protect them from being arrested as illegals. Thailand doesn’t recognized asylum seekers. In 2011, James Lynch, a UNHCR Representative for Thailand said,
“The UN refugee agency believes no refugee should be locked up simply for being a refugee, so we applaud any measure that gets refugees out from behind bars. At the same time, we continue to work with the Thai government to prevent refugees from being arbitrarily rounded up and sent to detention centres.”
Unfortunately, it’s 2016 and the arrest rate of innocents fleeing persecution and hold UNHCR asylum certificates has risen. The approx. $1450USD to bail them out is an extremely high amount for most of us working for their survival. This costs takes food and shelter away from families suffering ‘outside’. The Thai government has developed a monthly plan to raid places known to house these Christian asylum seekers. They have ramped up their efforts to round them up and hold them in the most horrific conditions at the immigration detention centre. When funds are available, Voice of the Persecuted delivers nutritional food and toiletries for those suffering in the IDC. We remain in prayer that something can be worked out between the government and the UNCHR Bangkok office for their protection. We continue pray their asylum interviews can be fast tracked and moved to a country where they can worship Christ freely…this is their hope.
Severe depression and high blood pressure from stress, even in the young, is a critical issue among Pakistani asylum seekers. They are overlooked by government agencies and the Church as a whole. How can the Church ignore the suffering of the weakest members of the Body of Christ? They tell us the world has forgotten them, or looks at them as beggars. We assure them they are not, the world has left them no other choice.
Voice of the Persecuted is able to pay the costs of John’s medical care and hospitalization, but the family’s ongoing needs are a major concern. Without help, they’re lives remain at great risk.
To help John’s family, those we already cover month to month, and the many praying for relief on our waiting list, we ask, we beg, we pray for your help. In one of our cases, multiple families stay together in a two room ‘apartment’. All the adults except one woman have been arrested and taken to the IDC. She’s caring for 9 children on her own and is worried how they will survive. In another case, a woman with 6 children waits near the top of our list. She too cares for her children alone…her husband has been detained in the IDC for over 4 months.
We are short on the amount necessary to provide next month’s expenses for those we already care for. Voice of the Persecuted relies on the generosity of people like you, members of the Body of Christ to help this mission continue. If you can and would like to sponsor John’s family, the costs to cover shelter, food and basic necessities is only $230 USD per month. So many families are in great need. Take this information to your church, or faith group. Ask if the congregation could sponsor even one of these families or those still waiting on the lists. The costs would barely be felt by each individual. We are happy to send you or your church updates, photos and messages from ‘your family’. They would also love prayers, encouragement and messages from you!
For more information to aid a persecuted family in Thailand, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Let us not forget them, nor think as the world, ‘someone else will step up to help’. Let us not regret the loss of even one of these ‘family members’ when there is surely a way to share and provide. But any help you can give is appreciated more than you could ever know.
L Kanalos, VOP Founder
Together with your generous help, we can reach the goal to alleviate horrific suffering. In darkness and desperation, let us serve in love, with open arms and giving hands to provide light and hope.
Everyday, we thank God that He is working through you to care for His children and further His Kingdom! As you greatly bless others, may God continue to bless you. Thank you so much for your support. We couldn’t do it without you!
You may also send your gift to:
2740 Third St
P.O. Box 122
Trenton, MI. 48183
Article/photos may be reprinted with credit to Voice of the Persecuted.