Bob and Brenda Bagley, Africa area director for Global Partners, report on the latest from Africa, including news from national conferences and more about the Ebola crisis in the west.
Wesleyans respond to Ebola
The dreaded disease of Ebola continues to spread in West Africa. We are deeply grateful for the efforts that The Wesleyan Church and associated faith-based relief and development organizations and individuals have made to assist the peoples of Sierra Leone and Liberia.
- The Wesleyan Church has made an appeal to Wesleyans to give to the Wesleyan Emergency Relief Fund as a means of helping in this dire situation.
- World Hope International is providing supplies to Kamakwie Wesleyan Hospital (KWH) and clinics, education through group training with villages, churches and community health workers, and educational posters and radio broadcasts.
- One individual with a deep connection and heart for Sierra Leone carried out a mission that brought great hope and appreciation from the local people. They said of her, “True friends come when there is trouble and don’t run away from us.” Carrie Jo Cain, a nurse from Minnesota, took supplies to KWH and was there for two weeks to train staff and help out. Carrie Jo is the daughter of Don and Joan Kinde, former missionaries to Sierra Leone. She speaks the local language and understands the local culture. As you can well understand, this is huge! She and her husband, Geoff, and daughter, Rebecca, have recently been appointed as Global Partners missionaries to KWH.
- The humanitarian organization of the Liberian Wesleyan Church, CHOPE (Community Hope), has been very active in educating the people of Liberia in safer practices during this crisis.
Both the Liberian and Sierra Leonean Wesleyan churches have risen to the occasion to help out their communities in this desperate reality. Please be aware that much more needs to be done to assist the church in these countries with your help. Click here to donate to this ongoing need.
During the past two months, important national church conferences were held in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, and Swaziland. Dr. Dennis Jackson, executive director of Global Partners, was in Africa to chair each of these conferences.
DRC:The National Conference of the Eglise Wesleyenne du Congo was held in Likasi, August 21-24. Among the highlights were the reports from the JESUS film team which reported three new churches planted in the past year and the Faculte Wesleyene de Theologie which reported 52 students enrolled. The national superintendent (name withheld for security purposes) was re-elected, and the ordination of five new ministers was celebrated in typical Congolese style–by sprinkling baby powder on the heads of the candidates.
Zambia:The Pilgrim Wesleyan Church of Zambia (PWCZ) held its national conference, August 27-30. The national board had worked hard to present resolutions to update the Zambian Wesleyan Discipline and the conference spent many hours working through these with a great sense of commitment to the PWCZ. The report of the church’s mission outreach into Malawi was especially exciting–ten new churches planted into the past two years. It gives us great joy to us to see a mature church moving forward on many fronts in Zambia! Praise be to God! At the end of conference it was a joy for Bob to be able to install the new national board.
Swaziland:The Emmanuel Wesleyan Church of Swaziland became a national conference, September 5. This event was marked with great celebration in jubilant singing and dancing, in the presence of many distinguished guests, and in the slaughtering of beasts (cattle) for a feast. What a memorable time it was! The EWC of Swaziland elected Rev. Mrs. Thabsile Thwala as its first national superintendent. She is a godly woman who has been active in the church over many years through ministries to vulnerable children and hungry orphans, through women’s ministries, through Reach4Life ministries, a counseling ministry, through teaching and through pastoring of a local church. We pray God’s richest blessing upon her leadership and upon the newborn National Swaziland Emmanuel Wesleyan Church to the glory of God. Bob Bagley and Dr. Jackson presented Mrs. Thwala with a special plaque marking this significant step forward in the Swaziland church.