Zimbabwe is falling apart at the seams. Dictator Robert Mugabe, at the age of 92, is still very much in control of the suffering people.
After ministering in Zambia, Cozmore and I set our sights on the town of Victoria Falls. We arrived at the home of our wonderfully hospitable friends Daniel and Amber. They do amazing Gospel work in a nearby village. What really impresses me about Daniel is that he knows when to pull the plug on an unsuccessful project. This takes wisdom and tenacity. As anyone who’s ever been involved in ministry, business or just a community project can attest, it can be very easy to persist and keep throwing good money after bad in an effort to complete an undertaking that is better off abandoned or postponed.
Daniel and Amber are building a mission base in the village. We went out to work at the base for the day, planting fence poles that will, in the future, be an enclosure for goats.
After investing much blood, sweat and dirt, I had to change clothing in the bush, with no private room or shower, put on my ‘church clothes’ and speak at an evening funeral service in the pitch dark.
The family of the deceased are Christians. The head of the household quickly organised the guests for the preaching of the Gospel. By contrast, pagans can make you wait hours with excuses if they don’t appreciate a well-meaning Christian family member asking you to preach.
We’d love to partner with Daniel on the purchase of a maize mill that will process maize for safe consumption. This not only creates employment, but also encourages subsistence farmers to plant more maize to sell to the mill. This extra cash makes a huge difference to the local Church and their influence in the community.
We are already partnering with a very successful milling project in Northern Zambia, where Gospel tracts, a small note book and pen are distributed in each bag of milled maize. Maize is most welcome for these families struggling with extreme scarcity, but we know what they really hunger for is the nourishment of the Gospel.
To support our already functioning project and to kick start the next, we require $6000 for machinery, to purchase maize from locals, bags etc.
Moving on to Gwayi River
From Victoria Falls Cozmore, Daniel and I drove to Gwayi River, where we were welcomed by our friend Pastor Penny.
The good pastor and his family have been running a farming project with chickens and rabbits thanks to the financial support of our ITMI partners.
Cozmore thinks it is hilarious that the pastor’s wife talks to her baby chicks when she feeds them. The first group of chicks that were grown and then sold before Christmas was a huge success.
The rabbits struggled with the heat and many died. Just when we thought that the project was doomed, the last male and female then produced seven babies. The Lord is good!
Thanks again to our ministry partners we were able to build a new rabbit hutch for the pastor, which can be moved around for better ventilation. We also blessed the family with loads of groceries – they only had rice in their pantry – and also a cash gift.
Cozmore got to use his new (used) projector and showed a Christian film, which had the locals captivated.
I preached at the Sunday morning service after which we blessed the congregation with cold drinks, the young boys with toy cars and the girls with pillowcase dresses.
Thank YOU for making this possible!
After the success of our Stone Hill boys’ camp and seeing young men coming to faith in Christ, and being discipled, Cozmore and I are preparing to do the same for the boys in Zimbabwe, near Gwayi River.
Jason (15) and John-Marc (13) will join me on our 2,600km (one-way) vehicle trip on African roads, to Zimbabwe, to run the camp.
The camps are very helpful in the African environment. They are beneficial to the youth, in that we:
- Clearly present the Gospel and disciple them;
- Teach obedience to God’s Word;
- Make the young men feel that they can “belong” in the Christian covenant community (those who have parents from different tribes or countries struggle with their identity);
- Strengthen their discipline and social skills;
- Cultivate and build Gospel-centred relationships that will be further nurtured by the churches we are partnering with;
- Just bless these very poor village boys;
- Instil in them a vision of victory of Jesus Christ and His Church.
Thanks again for your prayers and support in Kingdom work in Africa.
Charl van Wyk