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The refugee village in Paez

In 2007, approximately 50 Christian families were forced to leave their homes and move to a refugee village in Colombia's Andes Mountains. A member of VOMC's leadership team recently visited with these displaced brothers and sisters in Christ. He was touched by their stories of overwhelming pain and loss, as well as their testimonies of God's continued faithfulness and provision.

The Colombian Christians first began to face opposition for their faith when they stood against the tribal leaders of their home village. The tribal leaders, who have ties to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (also known as FARC), tried to force the Christians to steal, get drunk, take part in land raids, and participate in rituals relating to spiritism. When a natural disaster struck the area, forcing the whole community to flee their homes, the tribal leaders refused to share the government-provided aid with the believers.

As a result, the Christian families were forced to travel a long distance to another location where they set up the temporary refugee village. Another three dozen Christian families, who were expelled from their own villages because of their faith, were providentially united with fellow believers at the refugee site. Several of these Christians were also severely beaten and tortured by villagers before they were forced to flee with their families.

With help from VOM Finland and other Christians around the world, land was purchased nearby the refugee site so that these Colombian believers would be able to build a community of their own. With help from VOMC, this community will also operate its own radio station, a means of boldly broadcasting God's Word and reaching many others in need of salvation -- including those who are in opposition to the Gospel. One of the believers shared, "I'm so thankful for this help which gives us strength to keep on going. Thank you so much. Please remember to pray for us."

Please remember these brothers and sisters in your prayers! Thank the Lord for providing them with land so they can build a community of their own, and for the means to proclaim the 'Good News of the Gospel' through radio broadcasting. Pray that their village will be a bright light to their neighbours, and that many others will come to Christ because of their faithful witness. Intercede for the former tribal leaders and villagers who are walking in darkness so that they, too, may know the saving power of Christ's death and resurrection.