In some countries of the world, as much as 90 percent of the urban population live in slums.1 Slums lack access to clean water as well as sanitation facilities, and the homes where people live are often small, inadequate and lacking in durability.2 Poverty runs rampant in the slums. With the relentless cycle of poverty, there is often very little someone can do to improve their livelihood, even with hard work every day—and daily work can be hard to find. However, GFA World is bringing help and hope into the slums. National missionaries and Sisters of Compassion joyfully enter even the harshest of settings to demonstrate the love of Christ to those without hope. We pray for God to strengthen them, give them discernment and help them as they help others.
1 “What Is a Slum?” Habitat for Humanity. 2 “Poor Living Conditions for Those Who Live in Slums.” The Borgen Project. https://borgenproject.org/poor-conditions-in-slums/ July 6, 2017.
Often, people in slums struggle to find food from day to day. Not only that, but due to the lack of clean water or proper sanitation facilities, sickness is nearly impossible to avoid, but healthcare is hard to come by.3 When GFA missionaries serve in a slum, they often bring food and facilitate health care treatments to nourish and help struggling residents. Many missionaries are helping develop the slum community by providing income-generating gifts to help people provide for their families now and in the future.
Pray for those in the slums who are in need of food and healthcare. Pray that the people most in need are able to receive both immediate help, such as food but also long-lasting help such as income-generating gifts.
3 “Water and Urbanization.” United Nations Water. https://www.unwater.org/water-facts/water-and-urbanization Accessed February 6, 2023.
Children have very little control over their environment or their homes, but still, they must live with the ramifications—and in few places is this more true than in a slum. Very few children who live in slums can graduate from school and improve their chances for a better future. Without a chance to learn and the support needed to receive an education, there is likely no way out, and their family will remain doomed to the cycle of poverty for another generation. GFA missionaries look out for these children and often offer tutoring classes, helping them to learn how to read and write so they will have the chance to have a better future.
Pray that many more children will be given the opportunity to learn, and pray God will bless them in their learning. Pray for the missionaries who minister to the children in the slums. May God provide a place for them to teach the children, and may God bless their efforts.
In the slums, Sisters of Compassion, a group of specially trained GFA missionaries, are often on the front line. As women, they can more easily interact with the women and children who live in these areas—but their job isn’t easy. These courageous women will minister to elderly widows who are too sick to take care of themselves, wives whose husbands have left them alone with their kids, and older children who gave up school to take care of their younger siblings while their parents work. When necessary, the Sisters of Compassion demonstrate God’s love by helping fetch water from a nearby well or cleaning houses and cooking meals for elderly widows. This practical service is accompanied by an eager listening ear, and through prayer, counseling and kindness they tend to spiritual and emotional needs as well as the physical. They often also teach literacy classes to women in the slums, opening doors for their future.
Pray God strengthens the Sisters of Compassion who serve in the slums. May He protect them as they work, and may He direct them to the women and children who need their help the most.
Pastors who come to the slums to minister often have a profound impact on the community as they exemplify Christ’s love, serving and giving in any way they can. A young man or woman in the slum may witness God’s love through the compassion of these missionaries. They may be moved to help those in the slums. They know firsthand what it is like live there, to grow up there, and to struggle day-to-day. This is only one example of how national missionaries are so impactful.
Pray for protection over the national missionaries as they minister to those in the slums. May God give them strength to handle the daily challenges that might arise as they share the Good News. May God give them discernment to know who needs their help the most and how they can best support them.
Join with us as we lift up in prayer those in need around the world. Receive prayer requests with a special focus each month. You can have a part in ministering to those in need, through our most powerful tool, prayer.