Jesus said, "Allow the children to come to Me and do not hinder them" (Matthew 19:14).
Although none of us would do anything purposely to hinder a child from coming to Jesus, what are we doing to make it each for the extremely needy children of the world to come to Him?
After serving in the Lord in evangelism and compassionate care in Metro Manila for over 40 years (20 years living in the Philippines and every year several weeks to months since), we have participated and witnessed many effective ministries to street children (100,000 in Manila) and to other extremely poor children in depressed areas.
Perhaps the Lord will lead you to begin one or several ministries below, all which would be expensive, BUT TREMENDOUSLY EFFECTIVE FOR THE SALVATION OF MANY AND THE CARE OF THOUSANDS! (Each staff and volunteer would receive Child Safety and Protecting Training, and sign and be approved with a Child Protection Policy!)
1. Midnight Ministry to Street Children.
There are 17 cities of Metro Manila with total population of 12-20 million people. An average of 6000 street children are in each city. Teams of 4-6 could be formed to travel the streets by van of each city ministering food, clothing, compassionate care and the gospel to children. Good-News-type meetings and feeding could be held throughout the night from the hours of 10 pm to 4 am. Volunteers would come from local evangelical churches to work in these teams. Not only would thousands of children be reached but churches would be encouraged and trained to work with the poor!
2. Camps for Street and Other Needy Children.
As often as funds are available, 3- to 5-day camps could be held for 30-100 of these children where they receive food, medical care, clothing, compassionate care and especially the good news of the gospel! Follow up can be handled by Homes for Orphans, Ministries of Home Care for Groups of Older Children, Discipleship and Vocational Training, etc.
3. Safety Centers (24 Hour).
24-Hour Safety Centers (Drop In Centers) are places where street and other needy children can go at any time day or night for loving care and safety; a place for bathing, medical care, food, counseling, and a safe place to sleep. This would entail a large rotating full time staff and volunteers from local churches. Much care would be given to the safety and care of each child and possibly take younger, abandoned children ages 2-9 to homes for orphans and locate the parents of lost children. This would be a great ministry for all local churches to participate in in evangelism and loving care.
4. Day Care Centers for Small Children.
These will be on main streets near depressed (squatter) areas to enable poor working mothers to drop off their little babies and younger children on the way to work. The center would need to have two shifts for full time staff as well as volunteers, as it needs to be open from 4 am to about 8pm (16 hours) because many poor mothers need to leave for work early and return home late. The second shift of workers would need to be prepared to give refreshment and counsel to the mothers in the evening when they pick up their children; to encourage them, to ask how their day went, to counsel them regarding their children, and to share the gospel. This ministry would be a great help to local churches ministering to the poor.
5. Regular Weekly Bible Clubs and Sport Events.
These could be held weekly for 200-300 children in poor and squatter areas! To include Bible lessons (stories, memory verses and scripture songs), sports and games and a light healthy snack! A full time staff of 10-15 could have a club in four different areas weekly with many volunteers from local churches.
Each team and ministry would be responsible to trust the Lord for finances, equipment, food, and volunteers.
Let's do all we can for the needy children of Manila.