Monday, January 18, 2010

ministry plans, class, and sweet stories.

The past 24 hours have been a bit overwhelming. Last night, we went over to Pastor Ron and Joy’s house to talk about their goals for the Congolese ministry. They have some big dreams, and it is awesome. It was just overwhelming because we want to help, but there is so much to do. We weren’t sure where to start, so we discussed their plan in its entirety. After a few hours, we came home and couldn’t stop talking about it. There is just so much that needs to be done. Angela is going to work on a website, while I help organize ideas with them.

This morning, we had our first class, which turned out to be pretty overwhelming. The information was good, but the teacher wants to teach us for 3 full days each week, which is not what we planned for. We want to do more work; we don’t want to spend our time just attending class. Fortunately, Cassandra, Angela and I all felt the same way about it, so we are going to speak with the leaders about changing our schedules.

After class, I went to GBCC with Pastor Ron and Joy to record a few videos of the stories of Congolese women. We recorded four women’s stories, and they are incredible. While pretty much all of the Congolese women prostitute themselves, there was one story that was out of the norm. Martine, who plated Angela’s hair, is a 23 year old Congolese woman whose mother left her in the Congo as a young girl. She came to Uganda with her sister in order to find her mother. After she found her mother, she moved in with her mother and her Ugandan stepfather. The mother took off, and the stepfather sold the house without telling Martine or her sister, then he took off. A few days later, someone told them that they bought her house and kicked her out. Shortly thereafter, her sister became a prostitute and abandoned her children, leaving Martine to be their sole provider. I believe she takes care of three or four young kids, but she can’t afford it. She has no income. I don’t know how she survives. (If you remember from a previous blog, she is one of the women who praised God when Angela paid extra for her hair because she had no food to eat).

Martine’s age isn’t the only thing that separates her from the others—she has never been touched by a man. She is not a prostitute, and she said that because of what God has done in her life, she never will be a prostitute. That, in and of itself, is incredible. She seems to be the only one in her community who has never allowed it. Can you imagine being the only girl who isn’t the prostitute? Could you imagine her trust in God to provide for her? God can’t overlook faith like that. He has to do something. They all think she’s crazy because she won’t resort to prostitution when she goes hungry. As overwhelmed as I was with the plans last night, hearing Martine’s story reminds me that I want to do everything in my power for these women who can’t help themselves.

After GBCC, I went to House of Hope orphanage with Angela, Cassandra, and our awesome driver/helper for all things, Godfrey. He is a soccer referee and acts as a coach to the kids because they play in tournaments. It was fun to watch the boys play soccer and joke around with the girls. One girl, Mercy (who is probably around 10 years old) asked me what my brother’s name is. I told her and I asked her how she knew I had a brother. She answered, “I had a brother too. But he died of diphtheria. My dad is also dead. The LRA killed him.” As sad as her story is, Mercy is a worship leader to the other children, and she is so good at it! She seems really happy, despite everything that she’s been through. It’s amazing.
It was a long and tiring day, but I’m still really happy that I’m here. I hope you all are doing well.


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