Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Central African Republic

Grace Church is part of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches. While there are only about 40,000 Grace Brethren people in North America, there are some 350,000 Grace Brethren people that live on the continent of Africa. That’s right, five out of six people who attend a Grace Brethren Church are in Africa. One of the countries where there are literally many thousands of Grace Brethren people is in the Central African Republic (C.A.R.). What is life like in the C.A.R.? Take a look at the following statistics.

4.2 million population

176 out of every 1,000 children die before the age of 5

The life expectancy of a female is 45 years

The life expectancy of a male is 40 years

In 2006, the Gross Domestic Product per capita was $352

66% of the country’s population lives on less than $1 US dollar per day

C.A.R. has the world’s highest maternal mortality rate (1,355 per 100,000 live births)

Every 5 hours, a woman in the C.A.R. dies during childbirth

Some of the main difficulties in the C.A.R. are poverty, war and disease (HIV/AIDS)

In 2005, 230,000 people in the C.A.R. were diagnosed with HIV/AIDS

In 2005, 24,000 people in the C.A.R. died due to AIDS

It is estimated today that 16% of the population of C.A.R. have HIV/AIDS

There are an estimated 200,000 orphans in the Central African Republic

In 2004, an estimated 44% of the country was undernourished

In tomorrow’s blog I am going to share with you how we as a church are looking to make a significant impact in the lives of precious orphans in the Central African Republic. This is a part of the world that we as a church do not have any connection with. Last Sunday, Barb Wooler, a veteran missionary to the C.A.R. shared with the staff, Elders, Deacons and ABF leaders in our church about a special opportunity called “Hand in Hand” that we would like to use this December’s Birthday Gift for Jesus to launch a partnership that will allow us to make a difference on the continent of Africa. I will describe this "Hand in Hand" ministry in tomorrow's blob. Be sure to come back and read it.

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