Love by the ton!

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Greetings!

I am so grateful for every friend who responded to the need of the Belarusian people over the past couple weeks!

  • A total of 13 friends made or increased a pledge of monthly support — which means we now have a total of $3140 per month pledged toward our $4000 need.
  • And a total of 10 friends gave immediate gifts totaling $1910 — which is helping us catch up in Minsk.
Thank you to all who responded so graciously to support the work of compassion among the needy ones of Belarus.
 
Meanwhile, there’s no break in the ministry over there!
 
Please feel free to forward this link to friends who might enjoy following New Thing in the former USSR.
And thanks again for journeying with us!
 
Much love,
Doug Brendel
 

Here’s what happened

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I posted a week ago with disturbing news out of Belarus, and asked for your help.
I threw some numbers at you:
1. The nation’s largest humanitarian aid operation, with a staff of just 4 people.
2. It used to cost $3500 a month; now, because of rampant inflation there, suddenly it takes $4000.
3. A total of just 21 households give monthly to New Thing — total: less than $2000 a month.
4. A friend promised to match the first $250 a month in new pledges.
Well, here’s what happened — by the numbers:
9 friends responded with immediate gifts, totaling $1870.
3 faithful monthly supporters increased their giving by a total of $235 a month.
7 friends made a monthly pledge for the first time ever, for a total of $405 a month.
This wonderful outpouring of generosity means we now have $2790 a month pledged, toward our $4000 need.
A tremendous start. I am truly grateful for those who responded so warmly, so quickly.
As you can see, we still have a ways to go.
If you’ve been sitting on the fence … thinking about making a monthly pledge … if you’ve been wondering if you’re needed…
We need you. Because the people of Belarus need you.
Or your bank might have a program that auto-mails a check (this is how Kristina and I give).
Any amount you can give each month will make a very real impact on the lives of thousands of people in need, in the “forgotten country” of Belarus.
Please note: No New Thing donations come to me or Kristina; we’re volunteers. 100% of your giving goes into Belarus.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
I hope to hear from you soon. Thank you for understanding, and for journeying with us.
Much love,
Doug Brendel

What to do about the news

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While I was in Belarus, I got bad news.
I immediately wondered how to tell you, and whether you could help.

The economy there is in terrible shape — prices have been pushing up for years — inflation was more than 50% in 2012, and prices are still climbing.
Utilities, phone, and rent on our “Response of the Heart” team office went up at the beginning of the year, along with customs services.
Then prices went up yet again on the 1st of April.

The team didn’t tell me. They didn’t want to ask for more funding. They feel the $3500 we send each month is already a lot.

I think it’s an awesome bargain. I can’t imagine another ministry that provides aid to the poor of an entire nation for so little money — the largest humanitarian aid operation in the country, with a staff of just four people, making about $200 a month each.
But now, instead of costing $3500 a month, it takes $4000.

“The Great Kozovaya,” the head of our team, quietly went to area churches, and to the institutions we serve, and asked for help.
But everyone in Belarus is in the same boat. There’s no money.

When I arrived in mid-May, they were already more than $1000 behind, and negotiating with their landlords for more time.

Please understand: They can’t simply move the operation into someone’s home. Charities are so strictly regulated in Belarus, it’s not legal to work from a private dwelling. You must have a registered office.
In fact, in that system, charities there are under all kinds of pressure all the time. If you fall behind on your bills, it’s a convenient excuse to shut you down.

Our entire ministry to the needy ones of Belarus depends on keeping our Response of the Heart team going. They provide our only way in to this country.

But the truth is, even before our costs went up, we were on thin ice.
A total of just 21 households across America pledge a monthly gift to New Thing, providing a total of less than $2000 a month.
Each month, we hope and pray that others give special gifts to keep us going.

So today, I’ve got to ask for your help: Please pledge a monthly gift of support to New Thing, to keep our Response of the Heart team at work among the needy of Belarus.

An anonymous friend has offered to match the first $250 a month in new pledges. This means your monthly donation will be doubled. Your love will go twice as far.

If you prefer to auto-give each month, so you don’t have to remember to mail a check, you can use this link. Or your bank might have a program that auto-mails a check (this is how Kristina and I give).

Any amount you can give each month will help us make up the urgent shortfall and keep the work of compassion going strong in Belarus … among the poor, the homeless, the sick, the orphaned, the widowed, the disabled, the abused, the abandoned.
Please remember: Not one penny of any donation to New Thing comes to me personally. We are entirely volunteer on the U.S. side. This is a labor of love. Everything you give goes into Belarus.

If you have any questions about this need, this opportunity to extend compassion to the needy ones of Belarus, please contact me.
I hope to hear from you soon. Thank you for understanding, and for journeying with us.

Much love,
Doug Brendel

Donate online here
Sign up to auto-give monthly
To send a check: New Thing, 403 Linebrook Rd., Ipswich MA 01938
Thanks again!