Is it proper to thank Christians for their acts of service and gifts of love? The apostle Paul did, but notice where he puts the emphasis: “We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 1:2-3).
Paul thanked God for the good accomplished through God’s people. Today we give thanks to God for the acts of service you offer for the benefit of those in need through your support of WELS Christian Aid and Relief and other WELS ministries.
Working together through WELS Christian Aid and Relief, we provide financial assistance, food, medicine, and supplies to people suffering from natural disasters and extreme medical and financial difficulties. We thank God for moving his people to generously support our recent relief efforts in Texas, Florida, and the Caribbean. Because of these gifts to our hurricane fund, we are amply supplied with the funds needed to complete this recovery effort.
In addition to disaster relief, we also support humanitarian aid projects in our WELS home and world mission fields. These projects help our missionaries reach out to the people of their communities with love and concern to build bridges to proclaim the gospel. This past year your gifts enabled us to fund $327,000 in humanitarian aid projects to meet community needs like:
- Medical equipment and supplies for health clinics in Thailand, Pakistan, India, and Nepal
- Fresh water wells for people in India and Malawi
- Food and medicine for people in Russia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Albania, Mexico, and Indonesia
- Financial assistance for WELS Central Africa Medical Mission
- Sewing classes and textbooks in Nepal
- Welcome packets and assistance to new legal immigrants through several home mission congregations serving cross-cultural neighborhoods
One example of how humanitarian aid is opening doors to share the gospel: In a country where Muslims are 97 percent of the population, an elderly man approached our doctor at a free medical clinic in a small community. He said to the doctor, “I know your God is the true God because I see his love in you.”
Dear Christian friend, our WELS missionaries are continually exploring new ways to use humanitarian aid as a bridge to share the gospel. Please consider a gift to support our humanitarian aid projects in the 2018-2019 fiscal year to enable pastors and missionaries to use every possible means to reach people for Christ. We thank God for your prayers and ongoing support!
Pastor Robert Hein
Chairman, WELS Christian Aid and Relief