Zprávy HCJB 27.1.2003

   (Presbyterian Disaster Assistance) - Zemětřesení, které postihlo západní a střední Mexiko navečer v úterý 21.ledna, zahubilo 29 lidí, zranilo 300 lidí a 30.000 jich buď zcela připravilo o střechu nad hlavou, nebo těžce poškodilo jejich domy. Nejhůře postiženo je koloniální město Colima, kde byl vyhlášen stav nouze. Organizace Presbyterian Disaster Assistance je připravena pomoci v tomto neštěstí, jak si to jen okolnosti vyžádají. Samuel Lobato z úřadu Church World Service v Mexico City byl v Colimě v pátek 24.ledna a společně s místními představiteli odhadoval, zda bude třeba mezinárodní pomoci.

*Nejnovější zprávy v originální anglické verzi jsou vždy ZDE (klikněte).

    Věřící ze zemí střední Asie i nadále podávají zprávy o útlaku ze strany vládních složek. Jim Courter z Mezinárodní Biblické Společnosti (IBS) říká, že zatímco většina misijních programů může dále pokračovat, jsou jejich pracovníci stále na pozoru. „Nemůžu sdělit konkrétní jména ani země, protože by to mohlo ovlivnit tamní dění. Ale chci poprosit o modlitby za ty oblasti, kde fundamentalismus stále více upevňuje svou pozici a kde se stále více volá po džihádu. Modlete se za ty, kteří tam pracují, za jejich ochranu a za růst sborů.“ Courter říká, že po několika odkladech se IBS chystá na přípravu další fáze služby ve střední Asii a v bývalém Sovětském svazu. „Právě se zabýváme překlady do ruštiny, (což představuje) spíše výklad Písma než doslovný překlad. To bude dokončeno do konce tohoto roku, Nový zákon je připraven k vydání v červnu.“ (Mission Network News)

Loyalist mobs opposing a French effort to end civil war in the West African country of Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast) returned to the downtown streets of Abidjan today, charging foreigners, building checkpoints with burning debris and gathering outside the U.S. and French embassies. Stun grenades could be heard popping outside the embassies as security forces tried to disperse the crowds. President Laurent Gbagbo sought to calm those supporters who believe the French-brokered peace deal yields too much to the West African nation's rebels. "I ask them to go home. I ask them to go to work," the president said on state TV. Gbagbo planned to brief the nation tonight on the peace plan. The accord reached Friday in Paris calls for power sharing between Gbagbo's government and the rebels after a four-month-old insurgency in the world's largest cocoa-producing nation. That power sharing would stay in place until 2005 elections. On Sunday, government supporters went on a rampage through the city of 3 million, laying siege to France's embassy and army base and looting French-affiliated businesses and agencies. French forces in the former French colony responded with tear gas, stun grenades and water cannons. Gbagbo urged the protesters to accept the French deal. (Associated Press)

* HCJB World Radio's regional office for Sub-Saharan Africa is in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire. Fréquence Vie (Frequency Life), a partner FM station in Abidjan operated by SIM and local churches, continues to air programs of hope and encouragement. The station broadcasts 17 hours daily in French and some local languages.


The earthquake that hit western and central Mexico late Tuesday, Jan. 21, left 29 people dead, more than 300 injured and some 30,000 homeless or with heavily damaged homes. Worst hit was the colonial city of Colima which has been declared a disaster area. Presbyterian Disaster Assistance stands ready to respond to this disaster pending an appeal for assistance. Samuel Lobato of the Church World Service office in Mexico City was in Colima Friday, Jan. 24, to conduct an assessment, meet with local leaders and determine the need for international assistance. (Presbyterian Disaster Assistance)


British Prime Minister Tony Blair was among the more than 1,000 mourners who attended the funeral at Manchester Cathedral Sunday, Jan. 26, of Constable Stephen Oake, the special branch officer killed during a counter-terrorism raid. He was stabbed to death as he searched the apartment of a suspected Muslim extremist in the city Jan. 14. The overtly Christian funeral was led by Rev. Rob White of Poynton Baptist Church in Cheshire where Oake and his family worshiped. Since the church was packed with people, hundreds of additional mourners stood outside the church, listening as the service was broadcast on loudspeakers. Kamel Bourgass, 27, has been charged with Stephen Oake's murder and the attempted murder of four other officers. Bourgass was accused of being part of an armed Algerian group suspected of planning an attack using the deadly poison ricin. Last week police interrogated and arrested seven men, most of them North Africans, following a raid on a radical London mosque. (Assist News Service/AP)


Believers in Central Asian countries continue to report oppressive trouble with government agencies. International Bible Society's Jim Courter says that while most of the ministry's programs have been allowed to continue, the workers are cautious. "I can't mention any names or even countries because it might compromise what's happening there. But I would ask that you pray for those areas where fundamentalism is coming in stronger and the call for jihad is getting stronger. Pray that the workers there would be protected and the churches would grow." Courter says that after several delays, IBS is preparing for its next phase of ministry in Central Asia and the former Soviet Union. "We're doing a Russian translation now [that presents] the meaning of the Scriptures rather than just a word-for-word translation. This will be finished by the end of this year; the New Testament is ready to be published in June." (Mission Network News)


In a country where Christians are roundly despised, persecuted and ridiculed, Lao officials recently awarded certificates of recognition to two church groups for competing in local athletic events. On Dec. 2 a local church in Savannakhet province finished third in a volleyball tournament conducted on Lao National Day. The open participation of this team of believers encouraged Christians across the country where churches have been closed and believers suppressed. "Most Lao people in Savannakhet thought that evangelical Christians had been eradicated," said the leader of a Lao Christian ministry. "It surprised the Lao people attending the sporting event that evangelical Christians are still alive and active in Laos." Then on Dec. 12 believers in Nakham officially represented the Songkorn district in the provincial competition on the birthday of Kysorn Phomvihan, the founder of communist Laos, and took second place. District officials went to the evangelical church in Nakham to present the second-place certificate to the team. Lao Christians have found that sponsoring or participating in sports events allows them to present themselves before the public in an "acceptable manner" while helping to break longtime stereotypes. Meanwhile, persecution continues in Laos. Fifteen women from the Khamsaan Church and two leaders from the Savannakhet Church went to celebrate Christmas with Christians in Dongpoong on Dec. 26. Early the next morning local officials arrested the 17 visitors and held them in jail for a day. Authorities later arrested nine more Christians and detained them for nine days. (Missions Insider)


Seventeen years after international Christian broadcasters began a cooperative effort to make gospel broadcasts available in all of the world's major languages, HCJB World Radio is preparing to go on the air with the final two languages on its original list.

Through the World by Radio challenge (formerly called World by 2000), HCJB World Radio has worked with Far East Broadcasting Co., Trans World Radio, SIM, FEBA Radio and others to add Christian broadcasts in more than 110 "megalanguages" -- those with at least 1 million speakers. Today less than 80 of the world's 372 megalanguages still lack Christian broadcasts.

But that number will soon be reduced by two as HCJB World Radio makes final plans to air programs in the Chechen and Kituba languages, said President Dave Johnson in Colorado Springs, Colo. This will complete the 23 languages on the ministry's original language list.

Program producers have been identified for the Chechen language, spoken by 1 million people. "People have been trained, they're working on translating scripts, and there is a lot of interest in the possibility of having Chechen programs on the air," Johnson said. "I expect the broadcasts will begin on a local station sometime this year."

Meanwhile, work is progressing well on broadcasts in Kituba, a language spoken by 4.2 million people in the Dem. Rep. of Congo. "We have a producer, programming material and a sponsor, but we're still looking for a local station in the area from which to air the programs," he said. "I'm confident that a site will be found this year."

While HCJB World Radio's initial commitment to World by Radio is nearly fulfilled, SIM transferred stewardship of nine African languages to the ministry in 2001. Regional personnel in Sub-Saharan Africa are working to add broadcasts in the following languages: Djerma, Fula, Ibibio, Ijaw, Maninka, Menda, Soninke, Themne and Tiv.

Here are additional World by Radio updates from HCJB World Radio:
- Turkmen (3.1 million speakers, Turkmenistan/Afghanistan): Moved to daily 15-minute programs this month, up from five days a week.
- Uzbek (15 million speakers, Uzbekistan): Increased to four 15-minute programs a week on AM this month, up from once a week. Also airs weekly programs from U.K. via shortwave.
- Tajik (4 million speakers, Tajikistan): Resumed weekly 15-minute broadcasts via shortwave from U.K. after being off the air due to lack of programming.
- Bashkir (1.4 million speakers, Russia): Resumed weekly 15-minute broadcasts via shortwave from U.K. after being off the air due to lack of programming.
- Igbo (15 million speakers, Nigeria): Weekly half-hour programs aired via shortwave from Johannesburg have resulted in a surprising enthusiastic response from listeners and requests to increase the airtime.
- Chuvash (1.8 million speakers, Russia): Weekly 15-minute programs in Chuvash and Russian continue to help the local believers grow and mature in their faith. (HCJB World Radio)

© Copyright 2003 - HCJB World Radio - Colorado Springs, CO USA - btc@hcjb.org


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