To download the original copy, please follow this link: News Update – February 2017
From this issue of News Update:
Cross cultural ministries have been one of the main core values for CIM Canada. Over the last number of years, we have been sending STM teams to the West African countries of Ghana and Togo and as 2017 begins, we will continue to send teams to these areas. We have also been seeking direction from the Lord as to how to expand our ministries. Through a lot of prayer and advice from our board of directors, we are excited to announce that CIM Canada will explore the possibility of ministering to the Romas of Europe.
The Romas, also known as the Romani, or the Gypsies, are a traditionally nomadic ethnic group, living mostly in Europe and more recently, the Americas, originating from northern regions of the Indian subcontinent. There are an estimated 4 million Romas living in Europe, but because many Romas do not register their ethnic identity in official censuses, some say that a more accurate estimate of Romas living in Europe is closer to 14 million.
There are many needs and challenges in working with the Romas and we ask for your prayers as we begin this endeavor. Some of these challenges include:
a. Historical and Cultural burdens: Romas are discriminated against and are often neglected. They are treated as second class citizens and most live on reserves. As a result, Romas have been stereo-typed to survive through stealing and cheating.
b. Poor living conditions: Even though there has been much improvement over the last ten years, most Roma settlements are characterized by very poor living accommodations which lead to unsanitary health conditions.
c. Marriage at a very young age: Some Romas marry as young as ten years old. As a result, many teen age mothers do not know how to be a mother. Various governments give money to families with children and Romas marry to have children but do not know how to raise them.
d. Illiteracy: Most Roma adults are illiterate.
e. Church planting: At present, there are very few churches for the Romas to attend. Therefore spiritual care and discipleship has been very difficult.
CIM Canada will send an exploratory team to the Ukraine, possibly in June, to see how we as a mission organization can help share God’s love to this very needy people group. The South Calgary Chinese Evangelical Free Church in Calgary, Canada, have been sending short term teams to the Ukraine over the last decade and in recent trips have been visiting some of the Roma settlements near the Ukraine/Hungary border. Currently there are 12 Roma settlements near the town of Uzhhorod and it will be in these settlements that we will make our initial visits. The estimated number of people living in these settlements is between 8,000 to 10,000.
As we begin this endeavor, we ask for your prayers.
a. Pray for the salvation of the Romas and guidance for the role that CIM Canada will play.
b. Pray for effective partnerships as we minister to the Romas locally.
c. Pray for support of the local Roma churches and pastors.
d. Pray for church planting and that pastors may be trained to serve the Romas.
e. Pray for the Roma adults to learn and develop life skills.
We are called in the Great Commission in Matthew 28 to go and make disciples of all nations. This includes the Romas of Europe and we are excited to be included in God’s plan to reach out to them. Though it is still too early to see what CIM’s role is, we know that the Lord will use us. You may be a part of our team too, through prayer, finances, and travelling with us to share the gospel of Jesus Christ.
We are only into the second month of 2017, but we anticipate great things to happen for the kingdom of God worldwide this year and CIM Canada will be a part of that. If you would like more information about our organization and also how you may contribute, please do not hesitate to visit our website at www.cimcanada.org
God bless and may you continue to serve Him wherever you may be reading this.
Rev. Isaac Quan
Financial Highlights for the month of January 2017
(please click on the table to enlarge)
1. General Fund – for general and administrative such as staff salaries
2. Designated Fund – for specific ministries in different field locations as designated (cannot be transferred between funds)
– All financial figures are in Canadian dollar and rounded to the nearest dollar.
Canadian Registered Charity Registration Number of CIM (Canada): 896216207RR0001