It never ceases to amaze me how children can still make us feel like celebrities here. Every time we visit a village, the kids are running to the car singing and dancing all along the way. And, the minute you step out of the car every hand is stretched out to greet you with a handshake…some not wanting to let go.
This weekend, we spent Friday morning with our Nazarene church in Kafubu, a small village right outside of Lubumbashi. Last November, with the first rains of the rainy season, the Church building was destroyed. Since then, they have been meeting under a large Mango tree. Despite their setback, this church has remained faithful and continued on as the church, without a building. We were fortunate to see the large piece of property they are using as a farm. They are growing cabbage, corn, tomatoes, zucchini and a few green leaf vegetables eaten by many in Congo. This is great for the village, not only in supplying food for themselves, but also to sell and use as income. This church has also begun a literacy program for women. Many women have not had the opportunity to go to school. In fact, here in Lubumbashi, school is not free. You must pay to attend school. The ladies in the church were very excited to show what they had been learning. Using the chalkboard, each woman took a turn writing a new word she had learned to write, as well as her name. It’s beautiful to see their confidence and excitement. We were finally privileged to help with the feeding program they have for kids. Gavin, Crystal (an American visitor who has been ministering in South Africa, but came to see what ministries she could be a part of in Lubumbashi) and I filled up bowls with fufu, fish and linga, linga (a green leaf vegetable).
God is so good! They have begun to build a new church, with their own means and hope to begin building a school soon; giving every child the opportunity to be educated. Bonne Samaritan Church of the Nazarene, in Kafubu is carrying out the mission of the church.
“You are the people of God; he loved you and chose you for his own. So then, you must clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Be tolerant with one another and forgive one another whenever any of you has a complaint against someone else. You must forgive one another just as the Lord has forgiven you. And to all these qualities add love, which binds all things together in perfect purity. The peace that Christ gives is to guide you in the decisions you make; for it is to this peace that God has called you together in the one body. And be thankful. Christ’s message in all its richness must live in your hearts. Teach and instruct each other with all wisdom. Sing psalms, hymns, and sacred songs; sing to God with thanksgiving in your hearts. Everything you do or say, then, should be done in the name of the Lord Jesus, as you give thanks through him to God the Father.”