We Will Never Forget

We’ve heard a lot about Aceh because of the unbelievable destruction there. We haven’t heard nearly so much about the Island of Nias which is off the west coast of Sumatra – and with good reason. Nias was relatively untouched.

What an awful word relatively is! Relatively means dozens and dozens are dead instead of thousands. Relatively means hundreds are homeless instead of tens of thousands.

The Lutheran World Federation sent a pastoral assessment team to Nias and Aceh in the middle of January. The team included Peter Schirmer from Australian Lutheran World Service.

We won’t forget the drive from the capital city across the island to the affected side – 85 kilometres in three and a half hours. We won’t forget the sight of the wrecked church in the village of Sasarahilli II and the almost complete destruction of the village homes.

We will never forget the eyes of 12 year old Manarim as she told about the deaths of her father and mother and the finding of her father’s body just three days earlier.

The team left Nias confident that relief supplies were getting through and that long-term reconstruction plans were being put in place. We recommended that urgent attention be given via local churches and the resources of the LWF to the pastor needs of the people as they seek to cope with the trauma they have experienced.

Many of our partner churches are working in new territory for the kingdom of God; therefore, spiritual attack is their everyday reality. As a member of a congregation, school, or family, or a couple or individual, you are invited to commit to praying for our partners in mission. For regular prayer point updates, go to www.lca.org.au/international-mission/act-now/pray

Read more stories about our partner churches in Indonesia at www.lcamission.org.au/category/stories/international-partners/indonesia/