Advocates Hosts Small Delegation at CLS National Conference
Thanks to your prayers and support, we were blessed to be able to host a small delegation of 15 Advocates from across the globe at the CLS National Conference in Colorado (a huge thank you to the generosity of CLS). We were joined by representatives from Advocates Africa, Advocates Asia, Advocates Europe, Advocates Latin America (FIAJC) and Advocates North America, including two delegates, for the first time in the USA, from Cuba.
For the past decade, Advocates' staff has been sending letters of invitation to attend the Global Convocations for our Cuban brothers and sisters, but to no avail. This year, however, the Lord finally answered our prayers. Over the past three months, our office in Fairfax spent considerable time and effort to jump through hoops with both the US Embassy in Cuba, as well as the Cuban Interests Section in DC, to insure that the proper invitations were provided for Livian Gonzalez and Georgina Ortega. After a short time, the US Visas were granted, but the following step of getting Cuban authorization to leave Cuba took more prayer and time. What a joy it was to be able to meet Livian and Georgina upon their arrival to Colorado.
Although a considerable number of our brothers and sisters from Advocates Latin America (FIAJC) were unable to join us, for a variety of reasons including visa denials, the small group of seven who attended were greatly encouraged and set out plans for their next regional gathering: a 3-day spiritual retreat to take place in Montevideo, Uruguay in May 2013. Here is a photo of their meeting below.
From bottom left, Matt Bristol (USA), Ivette Montes (Puerto Rico), Livian Gonzalez (Cuba), Gerardo Amarilla (Uruguay), Georgina Ortega (Cuba), Nina Balmaceda (Peru), Mario Lopez (Nicaragua) and Daniel Varela (Paraguay).
In addition to separate meetings with the AI delegation, we presented a workshop panel updating CLS members on International Religious Freedom. The panel included Latcho Popov (President of Advocates Europe), Nina Balmaceda (FIAJC Board member), Teresa Conradie (Vice-Chair of Advocates Africa) and Robin David (Advocates Asia and President of CLA India). Each one provided an excellent update on the current state of religious freedom on their continents and in their countries.
We had an excellent time of fellowship with one another, and one of the most encouraging aspects of our time at the conference was seeing the international attorneys renew old acquaintances with CLS member attorneys and make new friends, particularly with law students from the USA. It was truly a blessed time of making connections face to face that will no doubt have future dividends.
We closed the conference with the tremendous blessing of having the US lawyers pray for each of the international delegates on Sunday morning. Mike Schutt asked each of the delegates to spread out around the ballroom and then the CLS members surrounded each one to pray for and bless them in the challenges that each one faces in their own countries and regions. This group gathered around our Cuban sisters, Livian (l with hands together) and Georgina (r), while in the background was the group praying for our English brother, Michael Sookias. What an amazing time of encouragement and blessing.
Thank you so much for your continued prayers and financial support for the work of Advocates.
May the Lord bless you with His perfect . . .
Grace and peace,
President & CEO
AI Encourages Participation in International Day of Prayer (IDOP 2012) for the Persecuted Church
We encourage each of you to join with believers around the globe this coming Sunday, 4th November 2012 (with 11 November 2012 as alternative), for the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. However, you could choose another date in November if you wish to join in this global, annual event to pray for the suffering church worldwide.
There are many countries in the world today where Christians are persecuted for their faith. Christians in Islamic countries such as Iran and Pakistan are often harassed and imprisoned. In many other countries such as Nigeria (r) and Ethiopia, Christians face discrimination, violence and even death.
Christians around the world are being persecuted; however, little of their suffering is known to the outside world. The IDOP is set apart for them. It is a date on which we remember thousands of Christian brothers and sisters from around the world who suffer persecution, simply because they confess Jesus as Lord.
2012 has been a tough year for the persecuted church worldwide. It has been a year where Christians have been harassed, ridiculed, imprisoned, tortured, restricted subtly by the law and even killed, killed in scores.
So, we invite you to visit the IDOP international website at www.idop.org and find out more about IDOP 2012 and also download the special resources that will help you pray effectively for the persecuted.
Advocates International & Campus Crusade for Christ International
to co-host joint conference in Hong Kong in April 2013
Please be sure to Save the Date for this joint conference, "Transforming the World Through Faith & Law," which will be held in Hong Kong in April 2013.
We are already working hard on details related to this conference and will provide more information on speakers, location, registration costs and attendance limitations as they become available. Because of the limited size of this conference, those interested in attending will need to contact their regional boards or the AI headquarters office.
AI is not a recipient of government funding and is solely dependent upon the financial contributions of those who believe in its mission, thereby enabling it to serve "clients" ranging from heads of state seeking to implement constitutional reforms to persecuted and imprisoned believers sentenced to death for their faith. We are most grateful and thank you for whatever financial support or voluntary service you can provide in support of AI's mission. Here's how you can help: (more)
Thank You for Your Financial Support