Hope

Before Farida came to Christ, she was steeped in the tromba– the spirit of a dead ancestor used to channel to Zanahary— the Creator God.  Before coming to Christ, Farida experienced extreme poverty, bondage, and miscarriage after miscarriage, unable to bring life to a child.  All this has changed since coming to Christ.  Today, she is employed by Eden Projects.  Today, she exudes hope and peace.  Today, she has a child… conceiving and carrying to term the baby she has always desired.  Today, she can provide for her family.

Bringing the Hope of Christ to the Malagasy people is the primary objective of Red Island Restoration.  We have both personally experienced the peace that comes with having a deep relationship with Christ and long to see the Malagasy experience the same redemptive hope.

Traditionally, the predominant religion of Madagascar is ancestral worship.  Today 52% of Malagasy people still follow their traditional beliefs while 41% embrace Christianity and 7% claim Islam (taken from the CIA World Factbook).  Despite the high number of Christ followers, many Malagasy still retain their traditional practices such as sacrificing cows, unearthing and turning of their ancestor’s bones, and following taboos to please their deceased family members.  These taboos range from not eating certain foods such as chicken, to not giving birth to twins, to following Jesus and the Bible.  We have seen first-hand how these taboos literally steal life from the Malagasy people and in turn, we’ve witnessed the freedom from the bonds of taboos that come from truly accepting Christ.  We are deeply aware that Jesus is the One living ancestor for all of us and only He restores true hope.

God is at work.  He is pouring out His blessings upon this work and the folks of Madagascar.  People are hearing about Christ– Muslims, witchdoctors, animists, and nominal Christians.  He is drawing His children to himself, He is speaking Truth, He is restoring broken relationships, He is transforming lives and He is reigning within hearts!

 

1 Comment

  1. Front row seats are not the place to watch a movie but to view a live performance they cannot be beaten. I have had the privilege of being in the “front row” throughout the life and ministry performance of Alissa and Jamie Shattenberg.

    I have known Alissa as a child and as her youth pastor. I knew when she left for Seattle Pacific and met this guy, Jamie, from a place called Madagascar. I knew when she traveled to his home country.

    Their love for each other, for Christ and God’s work in Madagascar, blossomed.

    I have applauded as the work in this island nation expanded in width and depth. The strategic and visionary God-directed minds of Jamie and Alissa saw a bigger picture and helped nurture Eden Reforestation, Sarobidy Maternity center and much more.

    I have had the honor of working with them for more years than I can count. Our church has supported them from the beginning.

    Their humble and honorable service to the Lord and the wider church has us being the first to our feet in applause, prayer, and financial support.

    We have some “front row” seats saved for you. Invite your friends and join us in supporting the wonderful work of God through the Shattenbergs.

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