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Letter from a Teacher

Hi,

I am a high school teacher and I have kept a recent copy of the VOM magazine on my desk. Usually the talk about these Christians has led to talk about Christ and salvation. Never has anyone in the public school complained or told me to stop.

I have seen the realization that people are suffering and dying for the sake of Christ take hold of many so-so Christian teens and turn them into fireballs for the Lord. The boldness of the believers in the persecuted church lights a fire under them. I have seen many Bibles brought to school and read between classes and at lunch. Some students have started Bible classes in the library before and after school.

I wish these precious believers in the persecuted church could know the far-reaching effect of their testimonies. I am always amazed at the surprise people have when learning about our brothers and sisters in other countries. I am also amazed at how God can use that knowledge to turn the focus around to what is really important. Thank you, VOM. — Marsha C.

(From the Kids of Courage archives)

What can YOU do to start a conversation about Jesus?


Classroom and Distance Learning with VOM Resources

Christian schoolteacher Amy P. led her elementary class in praying for a different country each day. The class looked at a map of the day’s country in the “Countries” section of kidsofcourage.com. The students also scratched off countries and flags on a scratch-off world map. “It’s been fun to see how our map has become more colorful throughout the year,” said Amy.

Sometimes the class used VOM’s Pray Today app to guide their prayers. “I still have kids from last year’s class that use the app to pray with their parents,” Amy added.

The class learned stories of Christian heroes from Torchlighters DVDs, and they performed a skit about North Korea for the school’s chapel. (The skit is available in the Kids of Courage VBS curriculum).

Changes
Now the school is closed and the children are participating in distance learning at home. But they haven’t stopped remembering the persecuted. “Even on Zoom—some of the kids still take notes while I’m telling about a country,” Amy said.

“We are doing our Living Wax Museum with my fourth graders through Zoom, and one of the boys is Eric Liddell  and one is Jim Elliot,” said Amy. “It will be wonderful to follow up on our Zoom time with some of the questions in the Torchlighters book.

Amy plans to read to her class from other Kids of Courage/VOM resources. “[Learning about persecuted Christians] has fostered MUCH more gratitude in my class so kids don’t take for granted that we get to have a Christian school that meets without restrictions. They often thank the Lord for this specifically without me prompting them.”

If you have suggestions for creative ways to use Kids of Courage/VOM resources in a class or through distance learning, you may share them by emailing [email protected]


Readers Talk to Us

Question: Some people wonder if young children should learn about persecuted Christians. How would you answer them?

Laura S., a third-grade teacher at a Christian school in Tennessee, replies:

“Jesus was persecuted, as were the apostles. This is our heritage as believers. We cannot ignore it. It is a great calling, and each child born into the household of faith has this calling.

“Should we shield our children from that reality? No. Persecuted Christians are their brothers and sisters in the kingdom of God. I want us to train our children to pray for those in need, and to care for the widows and orphans, especially those in the household of faith.”

What Do You Think?


Netherlands Kids Celebrate Teacher’s Birthday

(The story below comes from Stef, the children’s publication of SDOK, a ministry that is part of The Voice of the Martyrs’ family of missions. SDOK is in the Netherlands.)

Some elementary school students and their teacher at a Christian school in the Netherlands celebrated the teacher’s birthday in unique way. First the teacher arranged for someone to give a presentation at the school about persecuted Christians in Pakistan. Then the children raised money to give to SDOK for projects to help Pakistani Christians.

“We received a box to put the money in,” said Anne, one of the students. “I do odd jobs and often walk my dog, Tayla. Then I put the money that I earn in the box.”

What do you think of the class’s idea to honor their teacher by remembering persecuted Christians? (See Hebrews 13:3.)


Torchlighters Shining Bright: From Texas to China

Michelle Curtis wrote the following story about a group of Texas kids who provided 300 Bibles for Christians in China. Michelle is an editorial assistant for the organization that produces the Torchlighters DVDs in cooperation with The Voice of the Martyrs. The DVDs feature stories of Christian heroes.

Today Michelle assists with various stages of bringing the stories of Christian heroes to the next generation. But years ago, Michelle was the child who first inspired the Torchlighters DVDs. You can read how that happened at Torchlighters.org. Now some children in Texas are inspiring those around them to put the lessons learned from Torchlighters into action.

The Texas Torchlighters
When the 2nd-5th graders of Life Foursquare Church (Angleton, TX) watched Torchlighter William Tyndale’s story, they were inspired to send Bibles to persecuted Christians in China. These eager youngsters wanted to follow Tyndale’s example and share God’s Word with people who otherwise could not read it. In just four weeks, together with their leaders, they collected enough money to send 300 Bibles to believers in China with the help of The Voice of the Martyrs (a co-producer of the Torchlighters).

Each child had a cardboard “gospel box” to collect money. Leaders encouraged the children to think about ways they could sacrifice in their own lives to send Bibles to Christian believers in China. Some gave their allowance. Some stopped buying things they wanted in order to give the money. One even gave the money that was supposed to go toward repainting a room and instead lived with the old paint. The kids also enthusiastically shared the need for Bibles and encouraged many others to contribute—family, neighbors, and even strangers!

In 1536, William Tyndale gave his life for “heresy,” having drawn attention to himself by illegally translating the Bible into English so that the common people could read it for themselves. Now a group of believers in Texas have made personal sacrifices to provide Bibles for Chinese Christians. Torchlighters is inspiring young torchlighters to grow even more torchlighters! We pray that the torch Tyndale lit by translating the Bible into English will continue to light many hearts of fire for God’s Word.

[Learn about VOM’s commitment to provide a Bible for every believer here.]