We are very grateful to our God during a pandemic that brought much uncertainty and affliction to our country. But we also had the opportunity to show our love to those people, who needed to be comforted by the fact that God's love has not changed. He has not abandoned us. God is still generous. He wants to be with us in these moments of our life. He has poured out many blessings and has arranged them all for our good (Romans 8). Although things have been difficult, we know that these challenges and sufferings have a purpose for our lives and have helped us to grow more.
There were many things to pray for: asking our God to take control of all our actions; motivating the group to pray but also to act in the midst of so many difficulties. We prayed with the people who were affected by anxiety and fear over the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to our Lord, who up to now has taken care of us, protected us to be able to comfort and continue loving and praying always.
The celebration gave us a call for reflection in terms of making decisions and facing challenges (Matthew 7:24-27). The words of Jesus challenge us so that our life goes well and does not end in disaster. The call is to build on the rock who is Jesus and to listen; listen carefully to his words and put them into practice. The message invites us to decide to live by what the Lord says in his word, to love, forgive, cry with those who mourn, be simple and clean of heart, work for peace and justice. This way we will have a safe and welcoming home for everyone. A house built on the rock, which is Jesus Christ.
Our role in the community
We have a high percentage of unemployed youth who have not been able to enter the labor market due to the economic crisis in our country. This problem has increased due to the pandemic.
Like the voices of Vanuatu women, the women of our country are also affected by the same problems, perhaps more or less. There are women who, due to their poverty conditions, cannot and have not been able to acquire basic education. They leave their homes in rural areas and travel to the big cities, seeking solutions and many times the situation becomes worse. Many end up working in degrading manners to support themselves and the family they left in their hometowns.
Our help to women in these unfavorable conditions would be to collaborate with them, guide them and connect them with organizations that protect women and provide alternatives so that they can train and acquire the necessary tools to be able to perform an honest job that dignifies them.
As in Vanuatu, malnutrition is an alarming health problem in Panama. A large number of children under the age of five suffer the physical consequences of poor diet, they suffer from stunting and frequent infections. In other words, children are hungry and often get sick. They don't eat foods that can keep their bodies and brains growing strong. Poverty makes the most disadvantaged children face the greatest risk of all forms of malnutrition.
To the children in these situations, the help that the women of the WDP would give is to pray for our God to take control of this situation and to support with financial resources the foundations that protect and help these children. Pray and take action.
Communication is key
We were in total quarantine throughout 2020 and it was difficult for us to meet but thank God we maintained communication through calls to coordinate everything related to the program. The Worship Service was carried out and the attendance of 35 people was achieved in accordance with what was established with the restrictions of the health authorities allowed in the temples and parishes with the required capacity. It was possible to simultaneously transmit the worship in a virtual way for those sisters and invited people who could not participate personally. The service was a great blessing specifically because of its theme.
It was a different year in every way. Less face-to-face participation, but today we want to get up and build our houses, our nations and the entire world on the word of Jesus, who is our firm foundation. That must be the fundamental principle of our message today and forever. May the Lord make us wise builders for eternity.
Mayor Inez Proverbs, WDP Panama