Forgotten Voices' Mission:

"Demonstrating the love of Jesus Christ by equipping local churches in southern Africa to meet the physical & spiritual needs of children orphaned by AIDS in their communities."

Friday, December 10, 2010

Loving Locally

During this advent season of brotherly love, Forgotten Voices International (FVI) is working to respond to God’s gift to us, Jesus, by supporting those in need through our prayers, personal contact and finances.

FVI seeks to provide an avenue where we can “love our neighbor as ourselves”, and more specifically enable us to reach out to orphans and widows. In doing so, FVI has narrowed its mission to victims impacted by AIDS, while seeking to support initiatives and projects proposed and run by local people. This emphasis is very powerful in that it seeks to build-up local capacity to handle the physical, spiritual, relational and economic devastation that this disease creates. Through FVI we in the USA are able to partner with, support and encourage the work in Africa, at whatever level we feel most comfortable, through activities ranging from one on one correspondence to simple giving.

I personally am a Civil Engineer by trade, with 11 years of working in developing countries, primarily in Africa. My personal experience is that the population that we are trying to help will become more involved in projects that they themselves help to formulate and run. As an outsider to their situation we often more clearly see the “big picture” and the desired trends while the insider has personal, relational and day-to-day inputs that are beyond us. The combination of the two groups, however, can be very powerful and impact many lives.

FVI’s strategy of working through local churches is not coincidental and adds a unifying cement to the FVI approach. Together we in the USA are able to reach out to Africa as joint members of the body of Christ who are seeking to provide comfort to the victims of this terrible disease. Together we can act as one family, under one leader, Jesus. It is Jesus, through the work of the Holy Spirit, that guides, unifies and encourages our hearts to reach out to one another and who multiplies our love for each other. It is this same Jesus, whose birthday we celebrate during this advent season.

Chuck Arnold - Forgotten Voices Board Member and Project Engineer, C.C. Johnson & Malhotra, P.C.

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