Here are some recently highlights of the Lord’s work in Mali:
- You prayed, and the Lord has answered: Positive steps have been taken by the Mali Assemblies of God toward a renewed partnership with our Mission. We look forward to a more concerted effort of missionary teams and national pastors for the work that desperately needs to be done among the unreached people groups of Mali.
- Although the country is back on the mend after the war against Islamists, there are still pockets of Al Qaeda holding out in the far north of Mali. Earlier this year, jihadist militant leader Oumar Ould Hamaha was killed by French forces. Though Al Qaeda supported militants in Timbuktu ransacked just about anything and everything non-Muslim, and even Muslim entities that did not fit their radical brand of Islam, our church and Christian school were miraculously spared. Praise God, our believers are back in town, and the school is once again operational.
- Recently, most non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and other entities carrying on humanitarian work in Mali warned of a looming food crisis which, in their view, is the result of last year’s poor harvests and economical impact of the country’s relative political instability. In our view, this is not the whole story, and it is nothing new. As well intentioned as these humanitarian efforts are, the tendency to downplay the part that other social, cultural, and spiritual factors play in the ongoing poverty seen in Mali ends up hurting more than helping. This latest (perennial) appeal by NGOs for more food aid only serves to underscore the ineffectiveness of just throwing money at the problem. Poverty is not just a lack of finances or food or material resources. There is an accompanying mentality, a certain poverty-culture, a certain way of looking at the world that needs to be addressed in tandem with actual relief efforts. That’s at the core of our work through our self-sufficiency agricultural project. Thank you for your continued prayers and support!
- The entire government under the leadership of Prime Minister Oumar Tatam Ly tendered its resignation in April to President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita. Although a reshuffling of some cabinet positions is normal following legislative elections in Mali, no clear reason was given for this government-wide resignation. The president has named a former presidential rival, Mr. Moussa Mara, as new Prime Minister.
Your continued prayers for Mali are much appreciated!