AIDS Almost Killed Him, You Gave Him Hope

Danilo* was running from God for years, but one day he received life-altering news that changed everything. Keep reading to find out how your support impacted his life! Photo by TEAM

This time last year, Danilo* was surprised to even be alive.

After years of running from God, Danilo found out he had AIDS in October 2016. He wondered if he’d even live to see another Christmas!

But through your caring support, you gave Danilo a second chance. And today, he’s celebrating Christmas as a brother in Christ!

Keep reading to discover how God used you to change Danilo’s life forever!

The Sin He Couldn’t Defeat

Danilo’s story was ordinary at the beginning.

When Danilo was a young man, TEAM missionaries Jim and Sara Rodson* planted a church in his Southeast Asian town.

Soon, Danilo was baptized into their church plant, with a growing passion for the faith. As the Rodsons discipled him, he even confessed one of his deepest secrets — that he struggled with homosexuality.

When the Rodsons began ministry in a new city, Danilo found work there, too. The Rodsons immediately offered him a place to stay.

Over the next year, Danilo helped grow the Rodsons’ new church plant. In fact, most of the people coming were friends Danilo invited!

But despite outward appearances, Danilo was fighting a dark, spiritual battle.

His mind kept turning to his old homosexual lifestyle. He began dabbling in sexual relationships with other men. Eventually, Danilo knew he wasn’t living the type of life God wanted for him.

Convicted and caught up in sin, he told the Rodsons he could no longer be a member of the worship team. It wasn’t long before he quit attending church altogether.

With a heavy heart, Danilo decided to move out of the Rodsons’ house and move in with a group of friends instead.

A Desperate Wakeup Call

Danilo grew distant, but through your support, Jim and Sara kept reaching out to him. They prayed for him and wrote to him about God’s love. They invited Danilo to their home — and once or twice a year, he accepted.

For five years, the Rodsons didn’t hear much from Danilo. But one day, in October 2016, they got a message from Danilo out of the blue!

Danilo had heard about the couple’s newest church plant, and he was going to visit. The next day, Danilo attended the service and even went home with Jim and Sara after lunch.

And that’s when Danilo shared the devastating news that brought him there.

Safe inside the house, tears poured down Danilo’s face as he told them what he’d heard from the doctor just days before — not only was he HIV positive, but the virus had already progressed into full-blown AIDS.  

Turning to God through AIDS

He didn’t know how much longer he had to live, but Danilo had decided he wanted every minute of it to be for the Lord. In fact, he felt grateful that God had given him a chance to repent and ask for forgiveness.

Through tears, Jim reminded Danilo of the story of the prodigal son and assured him that God had been waiting for Danilo to return to Him.

Danilo began treatment. He lost most of his body weight. But because of your support, he had the hope of Jesus to cling to, even in his darkest hour.

Danilo humbly asked God to grant him just one more chance at life so that he could use it in service to Him.

And God answered.

Miraculously, Danilo’s health stabilized and his weight returned to normal!

Thank You for Changing Danilo’s Life

Today, Danilo’s life is completely changed because of the compassion you showed him. As he faithfully attends church, he’s learning to say no to sin so he can live for Christ. And as a worship leader and Bible study teacher, he’s helping others do the same!

It’s all thanks to your prayers and support! Thank you for making sure people like Danilo know they have a second chance at redemption.

Thank you for changing Danilo’s eternity.

*Names changed.

Share this article:

About the author

Brianna Langley

Brianna served as TEAM's Associate Editor and Staff Photographer. She is a graduate of Lipscomb University, where she double-majored in journalism and international affairs. She grew up on the mission field in Romania, but now resides in East Tennessee. Some of her favorite things to enjoy outside of the office include hiking, reading, writing and a good cup of coffee.


Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *