Missionaries assist flood-hit Sri Lankans

GFA missionaries have been providing aid and helping to clean contaminated water wells

Gospel For Asia missionaries are assisting people affected by torrential rains in Sri Lanka.

The last two weeks of 2012 were hit by heavy rains, triggering deadly floods and landslides.

Some 400,000 people have been affected, with many of the displaced now returning to find their homes, crops and livestock destroyed.

GFA missionaries are providing some of the flood victims with dry rations, along with water, rice, lentils and oil.

"Although Sri Lanka is geographically situated to endure frequent flooding, this is the worst in eight years," said GFA president K P Yohannan.

"Unlike people in other areas of the world, the vast majority of Sri Lankans do not have the option of relocating to areas less prone to flooding.

"We must minister to them where they are as they try to normalise life."

Providing clean water has been a major concern as many wells were contaminated by flood waters.

GFA workers have been deployed to help clean up the wells to stop the spread of water borne diseases.

Others have helped to provide basic temporary shelter.

"With hundreds of Gospel for Asia national missionaries already in place, we were able immediately to provide victims water, along with rice, lentils and oil," he said.

"But the majority of the work is restoration. There is much hard work ahead."

The crops that provide many families their only source of income are completely destroyed. Families' goats and chickens are gone.

"In all that we do, we listen and love, showing people a greater hope," said Yohannan.

"As they discover a God who loves them, they are opening their hearts to the good news."

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