Then I saw another angel flying in mid-air, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth – to every nation, tribe, language and people. Rev 14:6
Since 2013, one of our young adults has voluntarily spent time in Uganda, supporting and encouraging churches and communities. She has been involved in schools work, sponsorship programmes, building projects, investing in local enterprise and proclaiming the gospel.
"Going to Uganda has shown me the plan God has for my life. I have left my heart in Africa and I know that these are the people God has called me to make a difference in their lives. I am passionate about changing the lives of the children of Kinkiizi diocese through education, support, and love and showing them that they have a mighty God who cares about them, who loves them and will be with them through any situation they are challenged with. The task is great - the need is enormous, but already we are seeing a difference in the schools I have been fortunate to work in and the community I am a part of....God is at work in Africa - and he's using St. Mary's as his servant. I can't wait to get back to Uganda next year....and see what exciting things He has planned for us then."
Evas is part of a family who have received prayer and financial support, she says:
"and we must say God bless you now and forever more ...thank you for loving Uganda. You have blessed us in all kinds, say physical and financial...we have nothing to offer but love. You have taught me that whenever I see a person in need, I just give what I have, either food or a drink. The church family and dear Jess taught me how to be kind and bless someone in this world."
OCTOBER 2016 UPDATE
On the 14th October, Jess and Helen flew out to Uganda to spend 2 weeks there. The primary reason to attend a thanksgiving service for some of the supported young adults who had graduated from university. But also, give us the opportunity to check on people and places and greet friends old and new. It was the rainy season which meant it should not have been as hot and a bit rainy.... however the climate is changing in Uganda as in other countries and the regular rain can not be relied on - so it was HOT! Bishop Dan was there to welcome and host us and introduce us to the newest member of his family, Baby Gracious - a beautiful little girl who was born to Mama Florah 4 weeks ago. This gift from God completes the Zoreka family of 2 boys and 2 girls.
We quickly got into the swing of things, attending confirmation services with Bishop Dan, visiting our sponsored children and the projects that have been set up in Kinkiizi Diocese as well as visiting the schools we support and seeing the continuing great work that is happening there. New links were made with Kambuga Primary School and the need for more sponsorship for individual children became apparent.
At the end of the trip, we had a great meeting with the diocese in which we discussed our current and future plans for supporting the area, including the proposed building of "Hope House", a foster home for children. Big plans afoot in Uganda - but we have a Big and Mighty God who is working with us! To Him be all the Glory!! (Photos and blog to follow)
SEPTEMBER 2016 UPDATE
Only 3 weeks to go before Jess goes back to Uganda on the 14th October, dragging her Mum with her as well! In order to raise a little money for the projects we have invested in, there will be a car wash and cream tea from 10am on Saturday 8th October. Please come and get fed, get washed or offer your help by baking or washing cars for Uganda.
JANUARY 2016 UPDATE
Rev. Sam came to visit us at St. Mary's in a very chilly and snowy January month. He spent just 2 days with us, visiting Manor Green and Lum Head Primary (where Jess teaches), as well as taking part in Messy Monday and experiencing a real fish and chip supper at a Ugandan evening we hosted. What a treat it was to have him here with us - to see St. Mary's and the people that love Uganda so much. He was thrilled to be with us and takes back our love and prayers for the people of Kinkiizi with him. He also takes back some new worship songs to try with his congregation.. We can't wait to hear them!
DECMBER 2015 UPDATE
It has been a busy Christmas with Jess making a flying visit to Uganda to spend the festive season there. She was once again welcomed and hosted by Bishop Dan and Mama Florah and their children Johnathan, Martha and little Danson - who was very happy to see "jungu Jess-ca" again. Her primary aim was to check on the building of the new school block at Nyarugunda which is now up to roof level, thanks to all the donations given by St. Mary's. The recent sponsored swim at Denton Pool raised £988 which will pay for the roof to be put on. The block should be finished in time for term to start in February 2016. This means that now children can complete their education up to Senior 6 level (approx our yr 12/13).
The short trip also gave Jess opportunity to catch up with many friends and projects we support and all is going well. It was lovely to spend time with them all and take part in the Christmas festivities, which are very different to those in the UK. Children are traditionally given gifts of meat, salt and soap - but a little chocolate and a few gifts made their way to the children this year!
Another very good reason to go was Jess's invitation to be godmother to her good friend Evas's baby boy, Benjamin. Evas and Coleb arranged the baptism so that Jess could attend. It was a quiet occasion (by Ugandan standards) and Benjamin was very well behaved.
We have received news that Reverend Sam has finally received his visa and is travelling to the UK in January (Brrrrr). We will be hosting him the weekend of the 30th January where he will be able to speak to us and tell us more about life in Uganda.
Please pray for the upcoming presidential elections - for a peaceful election and for the right person to be elected president. Pray for all the children of Uganda as they work through this long holiday, for safety, rest and good health.
It was a busy Summer for Jess as she travelled back once more to Uganda, spending 3 weeks there with Bishop Dan and Mama Florah. It was great to check up on all our projects and see how well everyone is doing. We are really seeing differences in the lives of so many people in Kanungu. Schools are being built, businesses established, children educated, orphans cared for……God is doing amazing work through St. Mary’s and He is providing immeasurably more.
We raised approximately £3,000 to help build another classroom block for Nyarugunda Secondary School and that has been given to the diocese in order for that building to begin. This will mean that students can complete their secondary education to Senior 6 (A level). This is a really good standard of education and will help the young people get jobs or go on to further training.
Jess re-connected with a lot of her friends out there – from Little Danson (aged 2) who loved his “zungu”; to her daughters, Grace and Moreen; to Mayor, the blind boy who has now become something of a business entrepreneur. With our help, he now owns goats, chickens, banana tree farm, sugar cane plantations and a brick building business. Amazing grace!!!! All this and much much more. Jess’s blog is available to read if you so wish – and she’s going back in December to experience a UGANDAN CHRISTMAS and be godmother to Benjamin at his baptism ceremony.
Jun 2015 - Bishop Dan is over in the UK at the moment and Jess and Helen went to meet him. He thanks us all for our support of his people and cannot wait to welcome Jess to Uganda again soon. He reports that the schools we support are growing and developing and that our donations have meant that education for children in the area is getting easier to access and of a higher standard.
In order to further the work of Nyarugunda Secondary School, a new classroom block needs to be built to allow the children to stay at school for 2 more years. To help raise money to get this started, St. Mary's held an Auction of Gifts and Promises on the 27th June which raised an amazing £2,500 (and counting!). This will pay for the majority of the work to build the new classroom which is immeasurably more than we could ask or imagine. Thank you so much for your support and love for the Children of Nyarugunda .Over 100 children will now complete their education to a high standard thanks to the amazing St. Mary's. To echo the Arch-Bishop - TO HIM BE THE GLORY