Zambia Mission Underway

Zambia Mission Underway

Greetings friends and family! Muli Bwanji  (How are you?)

We finally arrived in Zambia one day late and with only one lost suitcase – now found!!  We were gifted the time in Dubai to experience this international culture.

Now, securely in Zambia, our mission is fully underway. Yesterday, after a high-paced drive on the “wrong side” of a very narrow road we arrived at King David School in Chawama. We met and observed the teachers and students of 1st, 3rd, and 7th grade classes. These students and teachers were “on holiday” and came back to school just for us! We felt their commitment to education in their sacrifice of time. Our discussion with the teachers helped guide our planning for the conference on Wednesday and Thursday where 39 teachers from 10 schools will be attending.

King David School also shares a compound with the church and minister’s home.  We visited with Reverend Daniel, pastor of the local church and Reverend Kondwani, pastor of a church in the Copper Belt region of Zambia.  Reverend Kondwani was the first woman pastor in Zambia. We heard about their churches and what pastoring across a large geographical region entailed such as bike rides through the mud and rain with a suitcase tied to the back.  Finally, we learned about how HIV/AIDS has impacted their families and the country – creating single and double orphan children.  The good news is that HIV/AIDS deaths are decreasing. Praise God for people and resources who have helped.

While we were at King David School, Bob visited a school in the Mtendere compound to observe a large group of pupils who completed the Strengthening Children resilience curriculum he wrote. These children also came to school during their holiday to demonstrate what they learned and to receive their certificates of completion from “Dr. Bob.” This class of 40 children he is the latest group of over 200 pupils in the school to complete the program. They excitedly shared how they have overcome many hardships in their young lives.

Last night, we had dinner with two seminary students from Justo Mwale Theological University College, who have been pastors prior to their work on their Theology degrees.  They are responsible for multiple prayer houses that are all a part of their “Church.”  Reverend Joseph noted it can take six months to visit everyone within their church community.  Cultural differences were also discussed comparing the collectivism predominant in Zambia and individualism predominant in the USA.

A challenging question Reverend Andrew asked us in regard to individualism was how we preach and live 1 John 3: 15-18. We shared how we have to be intentionally different than the main culture and live out what Christ has called us to do: be disciple-makers.

Rob Beilke