The Treasure in Africa
Dec 2014 By Kathrine L.
The treasure I found in Uganda this summer far exceeds the value of anything I know now or ever will know..… except for the value of Jesus in my life, of course.
My heart for Uganda began on a mission trip I went on in 2012. The moment I saw an enormous group of bare footed and thread bare children running toward our team’s bus, I knew I was a goner. God had put me exactly where I needed to be. I was so overcome with empathy that I had to take a few moments to compose myself from my sobs and tears. They were so excited to see us that they could hardly contain themselves. Yelling muzungu, muzungu at the top of their lungs they flew into our arms, two, three and four at a time. This set off 2 weeks of daily, if not hourly, emotional crying. God was surely working in me because I’ve never been the same since.
Sometime later I began sponsoring a Ugandan child through the Canadian charity called World Focus Inc. I knew I wanted to support a young female child living in Uganda. From a list of beautiful children, I selected Roserine, who is 7 years old and living in the village of Kyengeza in the Luwero region.
In 2014 I went on another mission trip to Uganda. In the trip we were travelled to far reaching rural areas. Part way through our visits to various communities I asked our guide to show me where Kyengeza was located on the map of Uganda. Well, he did better than that! He arranged, through ARM (African Renewal Ministries), our major connection in Uganda, to contact the leaders of Roserine’s village and arranged for us to visit them. As it turned out, Kyengeza was only half an hour off our main route. It happened to be in the middle of a coffee plantation.
The children of these far reaching villages are far more timid than those we got to know in 2012. So needless to say Roserine, too, was shy. We understood each other through the help of an interpreter, who later told me that she may have understood more than I thought but was having trouble with to my English accent. My accent! Who would have thought? I wasn’t able to meet Roserine’s mother because she was sick with Malaria. The Ugandans suffer from this sickness several times a year, some overcome the illness though many don’t. Roserine’s father works on the coffee plantation so the families in her village are somewhat better off than those in villages that don’t have an industry nearby to employ workers.
I was told that the money I send to Roserine helps pay for her education, school uniforms, all medical needs, school supplies and mosquito nets for her family. Sponsoring a child is viewed as great blessing for the recipients but the blessing is truly mine, my treasure in Uganda.
By the way, muzungu is Ugandan for “people of white skin color.”
December 2014 - Keith Eberhard
Life for an indigenous pastor is not easy. They are torn between taking care of the needs of their family and also increasing the Kingdom of God. Unfortunately many of the churches are small so there is little financial support given for being a pastor, and yet if they work to provide for their family it often requires long hours of hard work so there is little time or energy left for service in our Lord’s kingdom. These pastors want to be effective in shepherding the people that God has entrusted to them, they want the kingdom of God to grow and lives to be changed through living relationship with Jesus Christ.
The challenges are great. I know of one pastor who faithfully served in the Lord’s kingdom, trusting that God would supply for the needs of his family, using the meagre amounts that were supplied by the congregation. When the provision was not there, he personally missed meals so that his wife and children would have his portion of food. Several times he nearly died of bacterial diseases and infections because his body did not have sufficient strength to fight off the bacterial attacks. At times there were miraculous healings of him, or miraculous provision, but other times life was difficult.
Through the Christmas season of 2013, over $68,000 CAN was raised to help indigenous pastors to become self-sufficient. The pastors and their communities were assessed to determine in what ways could be most productive in earning a reasonable income as they also served faithfully in God’s Kingdom.
350 pastors received gifts to help them become independent. Depending on the community and the needs of the pastor they received either, 2 goats, a cow, two piglets, a bicycle, money to develop a piece of land or a motorcycle. See pictures of the pastors receiving their items in the Photo Gallery page.
December 2014 - Keith Eberhard
Did you know that you can choose to sponsor a child in Africa or the Philippines, pick which child you wish to sponsor, and then send your sponsorship money, all through the World Focus website? Our secure website portal can allow you to set up one time donations, fulfill sponsorship pledges or make regular donations through the processing of most major credit cards. You can set up an On Line Account, through which you can edit your personal information, view your recent donations history and view your pledge history. Setting up an account or loging into an existing account can be done on the Donate page of this website.