As we head to Uganda in a couple of weeks, our heart has been touched by a family there that we don’t even know. On September 28th, Pastor Joseph, from Mbarara, reported on Facebook that a pastor friend of his had been fatally struck by lightning. As our contact with Pastor Joseph is a little limited, we did not know much more about this heart breaking event until we met up with Joseph in Tyler. As we were spending the evening in Tyler, with Joseph, there was a pretty significant thunderstorm with lots of lightning. This lightning reminded us to ask Joseph about what had happened.
It seems that a pastor from Mbarara returned to his home village to attend a burial. After the burial, while he was preparing to return to his church in Mbarara, he was struck by lightning and died. His death left his young wife and children without a husband, father, and bread winner. At this time, we are unsure of the children’s ages, but we think there are 3-4 kids, all in school. The family had owned some land and were planning on building a house. To help the church, the pastor had recently sold their land and used the money for the church. This type of sacrifice is not uncommon for pastors in Uganda.
As many of you know, Mbarara is the city in SW Uganda that we have been basing our Mud In Your Eyes missions out of. The deceased pastor’s church is right on the road that we drive down each day as we leave our hotel there. As Pastor Joseph told us about the hardship facing this family, God touched our hearts about some things that we could do to show God’s love to them.
First of all, we thought of our friend, Cate, that we stay with sometimes in Gaba. Her husband was a pastor, but passed away of a medical problem at a young age. His death left Cate and their 2 children in a very similar situation to this other pastor’s family in Mbarara. Her strength, faith and God’s provision over the years gives Cate a unique perspective and ability to share wisdom with this recent widow. We were able to talk to Cate on Tuesday and she has agreed to join us in Mbarara next month to help minister to this family.
Secondly, we would like to ask you to start praying about possibly sponsoring one of the children of this pastor to go to school. We can arrange a school sponsorship for these kids through Parental Care Ministries. This is the ministry that we were introduced to in Tyler this month. For $35/month, one of us can sponsor a child in a way that helps them go to school, have food to eat, and clothes to wear. This is the link to the PCM website: http://www.pcmonline.org/pages/loving-children/sponsor-a-child/ If you are interested in helping us on this front, please contact me and we will arrange for the sponsorship. The children that we are trying to help are not listed on this website but will be profiled in a blog in the second or third week of December.
Thirdly, we would like to raise the funds to buy back the family’s land that the pastor had to sell to support his church. According to Pastor Joseph, a plot of land will cost between $3,000 and $4,000 USD. If we can secure this parcel of land back, we can move to the 4th idea.
Lastly, the family had been living in the church building. As the church will be finding a new pastor, their ability to stay in the church is drawing to a close. They are going to need a place to stay. As a way to support his church and ministries, Pastor Joseph has built a kiln and makes bricks used in construction. We would also like to raise enough money to build the family a small home on the newly purchased land. I am not sure of the price for this project but I will estimate it at $5,000 USD.
James 1:27 says, “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.”
Please pray about these projects and see if God might prompt you to give toward one of these specific projects. You can contact me directly via email at DueUnto@gmail.com. We have exciting news as we have completed the formation of our non-profit organization. You can now give a tax deductible donation directly towards our mission projects. Every dollar of any donation goes directly toward mission projects as we have no overhead or paid staff.
Due Unto Others
3418 Robert Dr
Duncan, OK 73533
Another bit of good news involves Jamil. He was having some humming in his left ear, back in August. This prompted us to go ahead and have his MRI done. We got the results of this last week. As many of you know, he has multiple tumors inside his head. None of these tumors have changed in size! We were blessed by this news and also by the news that the humming in Jamil’s ear has gone away!
We leave for Uganda on December 2nd. We plan to do one week of eye clinics in a rural area of southern Uganda. Following this week of clinics, we will host a week of eye surgeries for the people that we have identified in the clinics. Each one of these surgeries, to repair vision, costs a total of about $50. This includes the surgery, travel to and from the hospital, meals at the hospital and travel for follow up care. We observed God’s love spreading through villages last summer as we hosted similar projects. You can see more about our eye ministries, Mud In Your Eyes, in this VIDEO DOCUMENTARY.
Thanks for all your support through prayer and giving toward these specific projects.Jay