By Kara Witherow, Editor
New roofs. Empowerment trainings. Rebuilt churches.
That’s how some of the $60,000 in mission funds sent to the North Katanga Annual Conference from the South Georgia Annual Conference is being used for mission and ministry.
“It is true love in action,” said Rev. Bomboko Kakese, senior pastor of North Katanga’s Dean Scott local church, where he is in charge of plastering the assistant pastor’s parsonage.
Thanks to South Georgia’s support and partnership, he says, the church’s assistant pastor will live in a clean and spacious house behind the church.
Last year, the South Georgia Annual Conference approved the reallocation of $60,000 in designated reserve funds to support several ministries in the North Katanga Annual Conference in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
In a recent report, North Katanga Annual Conference leaders updated South Georgia Conference leaders on the status of the five ministries and projects being supported by the funds.
So far, the North Katanga United Methodist Women have held empowerment trainings for women and young adults in eight districts. This month, women’s leadership training conferences will be held in 15 additional districts in North Katanga.
Church development is another major goal of the program. Hundreds of bags of cement and sheets of metal roofing have been purchased to help build and reconstruct local churches in the North Katanga Conference. One congregation in Kamina ville received 350 bags of cement and was able to continue constructing its church.
“It is a joy to rebuild the church in Tenke,” said Maman Marie Jose, chairwoman of the United Methodist Women in the Tenke District, who explained that the church was being rebuilt after having collapsed under heavy rains.
And at Kamisamba Farm, they’re using funds to train farmers from different communities on crop production, animal husbandry, marketing, and more. The farm is helping improve production, nutrition, sustainability, and conservation of natural resources.
“On behalf of the entire staff of Kamisamba and North Katanga folks, we really want to thank the South Georgia Conference for the gift,” said Lorraine Charinda, missionary, agriculturist, and Rural Economic Development Specialist for Global Ministries. “It comes from the deepest part of our hearts and we ask God to bless you abundantly from where you have taken. We promise to be good shepherds of the funds and put it to good use.”
Allison Lindsey, Director of Connectional Ministries and one of a six-member team who traveled to the North Katanga Annual Conference in 2019 to explore a partnership between the two conferences, also gave thanks to South Georgia United Methodists.
“God is so good, and it is exciting to see our gifts being transformed into mission and ministry,” she said. “The churches in the North Katanga Annual Conference continue to grow and our partnership will bless both of our annual conferences. Equipping and empowering the women and church leaders builds a strong foundation from which to share salvation and living hope in Jesus Christ throughout this region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Thank you, South Georgia!”