This following article was sent to us By Julian Bryant of Christian Aid and we are pleased to publish it here;
” Covid-19 has held much of the world in its thrall throughout 2020 impacting lives, instilling fear, challenging livelihoods and forcing many vulnerable people into more desperate poverty.
Looking to Emmanuel, God with us, this Christmas, we are reminded that God walks with us through deeply difficult times and works through us in all circumstances to show love to this world. A love that never fails. A love that unites. A love that builds hope and brings salvation.
Last year I visited some remote communities in Ethiopia which were struggling to find water. I met children who were walking eight hours in the heat to carry back a heavy container of water. I heard mothers tell me about the hours they had to walk simply to pick up branches to use for fuel to cook. They told me that they knew about climate change. They experienced it every day and saw the seasons changing and it was getting harder to find water and food.
I saw what a difference resources make to these same communities. Down long dirt tracks and dry riverbeds, I was shown underground reservoirs and large ponds which were built through Christian Aid’s funds, storing hundreds of thousands of litres of water for use in the dry season. Local people are trained in building and maintaining these. I met women in local co-operatives in rural areas who are being trained to make fuel-efficient stoves which they are able to make and sell and to create an income. Children are able to go to school and adults are able to grow food. As well as being able to drink water, people are receiving the gift of time to work.
This year, like the angels at Jesus’ birth we can be messengers of hope for people in need around the world through Christian Aid’s Christmas Appeal.
Please consider praying or giving a donation to make a difference – either individually or as a church-community. £15 could train one woman to make aloe vera soap, £80 could provide two goats to help a family build a better future and £290 could pay for the materials and tools to build a pond, providing life-saving, reliable water for a whole community.
Paula Gooder has recorded a sermon for the Christmas Appeal to be used in churches which can be seen by here . To donate, to download the sermon, and for many other Christmas resources please visit: http://www.caid.org.uk/hope .
For more information, or if you would like someone from Christian Aid to speak at your online service (live or recorded) then please contact firstname.lastname@example.org“
Photo Credit: Christian Aid / Elizabeth Dalziel