Gospel for Asia's Compassion Services is bringing Christ's love to the suffering and needy in very practical ways.
GFA-supported missionaries and volunteers assist survivors of natural disasters by providing food, water, medical care, clothing and even shelter.
Teams also minister to slum dwellers and leprosy patients in some of Asia's major cities. And all is done with a clear Gospel witness.
"With Faith We Serve"
For months, thanks to the compassion of various relief groups, tsunami survivors in a fishing village in Tamil Nadu, India, had been surviving among the remains of their lives. But when a team of young women from a nearby Gospel for Asia Bible college visited them, the villagers sensed something different.
"Many people are coming and helping us and leaving, but we've never seen people like you," one man told a team member named Jeni. "You care about us and encourage us. We see some kind of love in your lives." "We told them it was not love from our lives, but Christ's love in us," Jeni explained.
Amidst a setting of sandy beaches and breezy palm trees, Rajaya and her GFA Compassion Services team set up camp between crumpled metal and crushed brick. They began by cooking a hot meal of rice, curry and eggs for more than 1,000 people. The villagers hadn't enjoyed such good food since the tsunami. The students then spent time with the people, talking and listening. Their care and concern became an expression of Christ's love.
It was my greatest blessing to be with the people," Rajaya said, "encouraging them and taking part in their suffering."
In times of intense need, GFA Compassion Services brings food, water, medical care, clothing and sometimes shelter, depending on the circumstances. But what physical relief cannot do, the message of Christ can: bring hope for a better future.
"We gave away blankets and drinking water," one team member wrote after working among Kashmir earthquake survivors.
"We gave away blankets and drinking water," one team member wrote after working among Kashmir earthquake survivors. "But the survivors were not focused on these items. Rather, they were so grateful for someone to grieve with them and listen to their sorrows."
Aside from disaster relief, GFA Compassion Services teams minister year-round in Asian slums, and one Bible college trains young missionaries for this specific ministry. Compassion Services missionaries similarly work in leprosy colonies and other forsaken communities. And all is done in the name of Jesus.
"We are sowing Christ's love," Rajaya says on the tsunami-ravaged beach. "In our hearts we truly believe that one day they will come to know the Lord Jesus, and with that faith we serve these people."