How did Kanaan centers come to be abroad?
It was 1963 - Mother Basilea spent some weeks of prayer on Mount Sinai. There, the commandments of God came alive to her anew as a revelation of God's loving will - not as tablets of prohibition, but commandments of love, signposts to peace and joy.
A fire burned in their hearts to throw out these "lifelines" not only to our immediate surroundings, but to the world of nations - far across countries and continents, across language and denominational boundaries. We began to pray specifically for one or more countries that the Lord personally placed on our hearts. A few years later, when requests for Kanaan centers came from different countries, sisters were inwardly prepared and sometimes even sent to the very country for which they had been praying for some time.
Small offshoots in distant lands...
... are wonderful opportunities to build bridges. Because we Germans have become so infinitely guilty of the Jewish people through the Holocaust, the first service was to Israel, God's chosen people. Since 1957, sisters have been there in the country, primarily to serve survivors free of charge who suffered greatly during the Nazi era. Other new Kanaan centers were established under great challenges - in Europe, USA and Canada, South America, Southeast Asia, Africa and Australia.
All Kanaan centers - sometimes the sisters were only two - went their own way of faith in the new country, where they were mostly unknown. Some beginnings were difficult, but to experience God's care in a very personal way was overwhelming for the mostly young sisters - these testimonies fill new reality books!
Young women from other peoples felt a calling to join our sisterhood and some are now serving in their home countries. In various countries, friends have taken over the distribution of the writings.
Many books and small writings are now available in more than 60 languages, - distribution leaflets and evangelistic words find their way by the thousands in almost 100 languages to the remotest corners of the earth. It is amazing where and how people find them: On a hike, in churches, doctors' offices, as a word of comfort at the cemetery - or even a discarded word on the street. In many cases, such a word has caused a turnaround in life, because these "words for the heart " hit right at the heart.
"Consolation of God between the pages of a Japanese hymnal."
A Finnish theologian, former missionary to Japan, visited after years her beloved mission country where she had served for 22 years. She reports:
"A miracle happened to me on my trip. During the last week there, a sad news reached me from home, the world went black before my eyes ... An my last Sunday, I went to the well-known church in Nishi-Akashi, where I had been pretty much every Sunday during the four and a half years that I served there as a theologian.wesen I had been. I took the hymnal and Bible from the I took the hymnal and Bible from the shelf, sat down on the pew in my former place, and searched for the the first hymn.
Suddenly a slip of paper fell out of the hymnal. It was one of the "slips of paper" that the Sisters of Mary distribute all over the world. But the amazing thing about this particular note was that it was in Finnish! How this Finnish note had gotten there, God only knows ...
And what did this note say? "GOD, YOUR FATHER, is greater than all and can master every adversity of your life. Trust Him and you will know." I stared at these words and realized clearly that Jesus Himself wanted to tell them to me just that Sunday morning when the ceiling had fallen on my head. The Savior wanted to assure me that He was greater than any tragedy in the world. He still had all the strings in His hand ...
And then Jesus promised to help me in all the needs of my life, - in all of them. There is no pain in which HE would not stand by me. I may trust Him in every situation. Now this wonderful note hangs before my eyes on the window frame of my study.
Perhaps Jesus wants to say these words to you, too, in view of your tragedies ..."
Mailis Janatuinen 01.07.2020
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