under the mango trees
Saturday, August 2nd, 2014
I was finally able to get back onto the internet this morning – only the second time since arriving in Africa. I found that Penny had been having just as stressful a time back home as Bryce Whiting and I have had here. I was sad to hear that, but thanked her for being my partner in life and ministry. Nothing increases one’s appreciation for his wife like being away from her for a few days.
Today we were scheduled to meet at Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) Advent Christian conference president Bertin Mwanya’s house. A group of leaders of the conference met with us under two large mango trees. We had conversations all morning, covering three topics:
- I gave an overview of the Global Training Initiative, sharing the variety of ways that we in North America might be able to assist DRC leaders in their leader development and ministry training.
- They asked me to summarize the distinctive doctrines of the Advent Christian denomination. I had done this many times, in many places, but never without any notes. An hour later, I came up for air. I wish I had recorded the talk, French translation and all. It was amazing.
- Then the conference shared their plans for ministry in the coming years, and what they needed to accomplish those plans. There were numerous projects mentioned, including the construction of a permanent building for the new church plant, a school, a medical clinic, a new well (which is already dug).
Bricks piled up and ready for the construction of the new sanctuary for El-Shaddai Advent Christian Church.
The new well dug for the community surrounding the church plant.
of El Shaddai.
Afterward, we shared a meal together, and enjoyed fellowship with these men of God. Some had come from hundreds of miles to participate with other Advent Christians in the week-long training event. We were all very grateful for the opportunity to get together, form new friendships, and pray with one another under the mango trees.