Tuesday, December 13, 2022

Children's Ministry Around the World - Honduras

As we continue to look at Children's Ministry and the lives of children from around the world, today we "journey" to Latin America again with a "stop" in Honduras.

Honduras is a beautiful country with mountains, forests and coastline on both the Caribbean and Pacific Ocean. It is known for producing bananas and coffee as well as for its history as one of the locations of the Mayan civilization. But while its past is one of wealth, today it is one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere (National Geographic). There are almost 8.6 million people who call Honduras their home; which amounts to 17% of the people in Central America. While they are by no means the largest country, 60% of the people with AIDS in Central America live in Honduras (UN Joint Programme on AIDS).

While these are serious problems, they are by no means the only problems facing children and the church in Honduras. Substance abuse, particularly sniffing glue, is widespread, as are violence, kidnappings, abuse and child labor (forgotten children of Honduras). According to World Fact Book 2014, the political instability in neighboring countries has been a problem for Honduras and they now struggle with the involvement of their youth in violent gangs. The UN Office on Drugs and Crime says Honduras has the highest rate of intentional homicide in the world.
Compassion says while school is mandatory for children ages seven through twelve, since so many children live in poor rural areas, they end up working to help provide for their families. In 2008 a CID Gallup poll showed 47% of the people in Honduras identified themselves as Catholic and 36% Protestant while the CIA Factbook shows 97% of Hondurans are Catholic and just 3% Protestant.
Ministry to children in Honduras is similar to what they do in other Central American countries with ministry to street children in the large cities and investment in small rural churches by providing Bible clubs, camps, food, shelter, medical care, substance abuse treatment, tutoring, job training, child sponsorship and other outreaches. There is freedom of religion in the Honduras, but Honduran churches and/or people have to “sponsor” applicants from people/groups outside Honduras who want to serve the people of Honduras. This does provide a “connection” and an opportunity to work through local churches and is a good thing – 13% of Hondurans are unreached (OperationWorld).
As you think about Honduras, please pray for –
  • The safety of children – so many are exposed to violence, exploitation and despair.
  • God to draw believers to Him.
  • Laborers to go and help nationals learn to serve children.
  • Children to see the hope available to them from God and be willing to believe the despair they experience every day does not have to be all they know.
  • Help for those with AIDS and for resources to educate and stop the spread of this disease.
  • The Honduran church to be a light to their communities!
Honduras needs to know God loves them! While you may not be able to travel to Honduras to serve the church, you can pray and, “When a believing person prays, great things happen.” (James 5:16 NCV) Let’s pray and trust God for great things in Honduras! 

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