We are so thankful to our beautiful Father for your support and partnership. As I’ve said many times before, it is impossible to do what God has called us to do without your support and prayers. Believe me, we feel your heart-felt, love-filled prayers.
As for the COVID pandemic in Nepal, we were able to fully transition out of the first lockdown in January. In May, the Delta variant hit Nepal and it was way worse than the original outbreak. Many more people were adversely affected with serious symptoms and even death. Nepal is still under some restrictions but, thankfully, now people are able to work again.
The past six months in Nepal have been very busy. The three main areas of ministry that we have been able to fully continue during COVID are the children’s home, the drug/alcohol rehab, and street ministry in Kathmandu.
The children at our home have mostly been having to do Zoom classes for school, which is very difficult, especially for our primary aged children as you can probably imagine. Most of our children contracted the Delta variant but none were hospitalized. Our main house mom did get a serious case of COVID and was hospitalized for a week. Praise Jesus that she is fully recovered now.
It’s an exciting time for 5 of our older boys that graduated from high school in July. They are transitioning out of the children’s home to start working part-time and going to college. God is so faithful in how He cares for the fatherless. He truly is healing them from trauma and abuse, growing them in His ways, and fully pouring our His love daily on them. It is awesome to witness.
Freedom House Rehab
Our Freedom House Rehab is going well It’s really amazing that every single one of our rehab guys from the beginning have given their lives to Jesus. God really is good! We have graduated 4 men in the past six months and sent them out to live their new lives in Jesus. Our goal for every man who comes to The Freedom House is to train them in farming and raising livestock (milk cows and pigs) so they can be able to support themselves and their families after they are healed, delivered and saved by God. They are also discipled daily in the ways of Jesus so they can be missionaries for Him wherever they eventually go.
A few weeks ago we were able to baptize new believers that have been saved in and around the ministry of The Freedom House.
Our street ministry since COVID started has been a lot of feeding hungry people. At the height of the lockdowns, we were feeding up to 1500 people per month. All the people that we feed get to hear the gospel and many respond in faith. Homelessness and poverty have increased greatly because of the COVID lockdowns because all non-essential service, industry and construction completely closed so the workers had no way to earn an income.
We also have been able to partner with village pastors outside of Kathmandu where people were suffering because of COVID to pray for the sick and give food and clothes to people.
For the future, we will continue in loving, serving, and discipling those who God has put in our path. We are hopeful to start being able to go to remote, unreached villages again when the COVID transportation restrictions are lifted.
The photos show one of our village feeding trips. Our missionaries were able to give rice, spices, and mosquito nets to people suffering due to the COVID lockdowns.
Personally, Tammy and I are currently in the US helping our oldest daughter, Gabrielle, prepare for her wedding on September 18th and will return to Nepal shortly afterwards. It will be the first time leaving for the field without any of our biological children so that will definitely be a difficult sacrifice…please pray for us. Our youngest daughter, Joy, is a sophomore in college in California and our daughter Grace is going to be attending a YWAM DTS in Kona starting September 30th.
Testimony Of God’s Amazingness (from Tshililo)
On Wednesday some of our Iris boys (Bhim, Peter, Hasta) prayed for a guy while we were in Balku (a neighborhood in Kathmandu), He was in pain and couldn’t stand or walk...today we went back to pray for him but he was walking He said that the moment the boys left he was able to get up and go to the toilet, then he was able to walk to the corner shop! Parmeshorko mahima hos (All glory to God!)
We are so thankful to God for all of you and your love for us and the beautiful people of Nepal. If any of you have any questions, comments, words of encouragement or prophetic words from the LORD for us or Nepal, please email us!
Love, love, love!
Joel and Tammy DeBortoli
Iris Global Nepal Base Directors