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Dear Partner,

Warm greetings from the Netherlands.
As we recently celebrated Easter, the world shook. Shouts of joy resonated all over the earth, proclaiming that our Lord is risen and that He conquered the grave. At the same time, tears fell to the ground, embodying the pain caused by natural disasters, poverty and on this particular day several terroristic attacks in Sri Lanka. Then we read John 20:24-29 where Jesus shows Thomas His wounds.

It shows us that our King reigns through vulnerability and weakness. Jesus doesn’t hide His wounds, they didn’t magically disappear during His time in the grave. No, He uncovers them, invites Thomas to come closer and touch them and then pleads to stop doubting and believe. So close after Easter, let us not cover up the wounds but rejoice in vulnerability together. That all, joy and pain, may help us to resist doubt and surrender in belief, proclaiming that at the end of the day our Lord has conquered that grave! Hallelujah!
Destruction of Idai
During the night of March 14, 2019, tropical cycloon Idai made landfall in the south of Africa. Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe were hit hard. About 1.85 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and about 17 000 households are on the move to drier land. Certain areas have become inaccessible and the population is now very prone to hunger and disease.

The GZB has responded immediately by launching an emergency aid campaign. Until now already € 236 000 has been raised. With this money, various partners of the GZB have distributed aid packages with basic needs such as blankets, cornflower and oil, enough to last for a month. Additionally, seeds have been distributed so that a new harvest can be planted as soon as the water levels have fallen sufficiently. During this period of distress, Ds. Hudson Kaseko was a guest speaker at our annual GZB-day. In this video he explains the urgent need for humanitarian aid in the region. 
  • Pray for the victims of cycloon Idai. That they may find God’s comfort and strength in all their losses.
  • Thank God for congregations worldwide reaching out with God’s love into the community
Mission run Ridderkerk
Throughout the whole of the Netherlands, many office workers, volunteers and congregations make an effort to raise funds for the work of the GZB and all of its partners. This is done in many different ways, each uniquely creative in their own way. The congregational supporting team of Leendert and Marianne Otterspeer have organized a mission run on Saturday the 13th of April. Leendert and Marianne and their 3 children will go to Thailand to spread the gospel among students in the city Mahasarakham, Thailand.

During the mission run, children, teenagers, students and grown-ups ran distances ranging from 1 km to more than 10, while being sponsored for those distances by their personal networks. The money will serve student guidance, sporting activities and ministry work on campus. We are very grateful for the commitment and support of all people involved with the mission run.
Dolores or Felicitas
Dolores, her name means ‘tears’, “but I should change my name to Felicitas (Joy)”. Dolores will be 79 years old next month and she is a member of the Presbyterian church in Baranquilla, Colombia. Twice a week, Dolores guides 25 elderly in her community in physical exercise.

Inspired by missionary workers Cora and Anthony, the local church has opened its doors and gone out into the community to spread Jesus’ love. When the members of this humble congregation looked around, they were faced with the loneliness of the elderly in the community.
More and more people rose up and became involved, from a dentist providing free dental care to a hairdresser pouring out Gods love through impressive hairdo’s.

May this be a mirror to all of us. We don’t always need a lot of money to go out and spread God’s love. We must ask ourselves where we can put our talents to use. How can our presence be a testimony for those around us?
Let's get introduced
Every newsletter we introduce you to one of out staff members. This time you meet Anneke Kardol!

  1. What is your position within the GZB?
I am office manager in the relations department, for Project 10 27 (the diaconal programme of the GZB) and the GZB-experience journeys where Dutch congregants travel to see and support our work worldwide.
  1. What is your dream for the GZB?
That someday we will have become redundant … the day that Jesus returns and everyone shall see that He is king. Until that day, I will testify of who He is and what He has done for us. 
  1. What does Easter mean for you?
He, for me … showing colour: that Gods perfect finished work of Christ becomes visible in my life.
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