Latin America is in a uniquely vulnerable position in its fight against COVID-19. Overall regional economic growth in the last year was less than 1%. Violent protests, social upheaval, and calls for reform characterized 2019 for Venezuela, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Chile. The region has also grappled with the 4.6 million Venezuelans that have fled their home country. And many Latin Americans survive on a day-to-day basis in densely populated areas with poor sanitation. It’s easy to see that Latin America is facing the coronavirus pandemic in an already precarious state.
To cope with COVID-19, many Latin American countries have closed their borders. Some have even barred their own citizens and residents from re-entry. Mandatory quarantines are in effect in communities or whole nations, with some having no definitive end. Most countries have declared a state of emergency in an attempt to utilize military and government resources, shut down nonessential businesses, prevent the spread of COVID-19, decrease the burden on their healthcare systems, and institute control.
C. H. Spurgeon knew what it was like to deal with a life, ministry, and city upended by disease, as he weathered more than one cholera outbreak in London. And he gave this charge to all Christians:
“Now is the time for all of you who love souls. You may see men more alarmed than they are already; and if they should be, mind that you avail yourselves of the opportunity of doing them good…Lift high the cross before their eyes. Tell them that God became man that man might be lifted to God. Tell them of Calvary and its groans, and cries, and sweat of blood. Tell them of Jesus hanging on the cross to save sinners. Tell them that — “There is life for a look at the Crucified One.”
Please pray for the many lost in Latin America. But please also pray for the pastors, missionaries, and Christians in this region who are continuing to sacrificially love souls and seek opportunities to do them good by sharing the Gospel with them. And while we pray for our fellow believers, let’s pray that we, too, would seek opportunities to tell others about Jesus. Now is the time for all of us who love souls.