Thanks to the generous gifts of many donors, the US Vineyard Missions Sri Lanka Partnership was able to raise enough funds to purchase necessary food packages for 78 families who lost loved ones during the Easter morning bombings in Sri Lanka. We want to express our, and their, gratitude to all who contributed to this mission of mercy.
The Zion Church in Batticaloa was the only non-Catholic church bombed that day. Evidently, the suicide bomber had meant to attack a Catholic church in Batticaloa, only to arrive at the wrong time for mass. He
walked down the road, where a children’s program was in process at the Zion Evangelical Church, and carried out his impromptu plan.
Though the affected Catholic churches have received government assistance after the attacks, the Zion Church did not. This is where the Vineyard in Sri Lanka stepped in. With offers of counsel, prayer, and essential food items, our pastors and churches reached out to those whose need was great.
Here are a few photos to help you picture the delivery which happened yesterday, Tuesday.
Our Pastors began the 600 km drive at midnight, arriving Tuesday morning. They returned that evening, tired, and full of the wonder of God’s grace. Here’s an excerpt from a thank you email from the Zion Church pastor:
‘Dear Pastor Samadhi Fernando, Greetings to you in the precious name of Christ. I want to thank you for the 78 Dry Ration Packs you gave to the victims of the 21st Resurrection Sunday Bomb blast at our church. Thanking you for standing shoulder to shoulder in our time of great grief and challenges.’
Once again, thank you to all of you who have supported this effort. The light of Christ was set on a hill in Sri Lanka yesterday, burning brightly for the nation to see.
We send our gratitude and blessings,
Susan and Gary
In 2001, God called Gary and Susan Stokes to restart Vineyard City Church in Tucson, AZ. Always engaged in mercy, social justice and compassion ministries, God led Vineyard City Chuch to respond to needs in Sri Lanka after the 2004 Tsunami. Out of this work grew the relationships which currently define the Vineyard Missions Partnership to Sri Lanka.