A comprehensive workshop discovering how church leaders can be involved in teaching about HIV and care for those living with HIV. It is a workshop that I have followed in South Africa in 2013 when it was organised by AIDSLink. And I have developed it into a workshop of 2-3 days for DR Congo. I have organised two workshops last year, in the CECA 20 church districts of Aba and Watsa. This year in November I will go to Bunia and teach the new CECA leadership. And…
Next month I will be for a two-day workshop in Koboko, Uganda. CECA has expanded into Uganda and the beginning of July some 12 pastors will meet for their executive council. Following these meetings I have been given the opportunity for this workshop. The teaching will be on Monday 8 and Tuesday 9 July! And of course it will be in English this time, so I have been translating what I translated from English to French back into English again.
July will be busy, as the school chaplains in the church district of Aru have asked for a Channels of Hope workshop also. That will probably follow the one in Koboko.
It has been quite an adventure to go to Bunia with all the delegates of the two church districts of Adi and Aru. They had hired a bus only for us. And yes, I was the only woman. And no, it didn’t bother me. I was well looked after. The first start we had on Easter Sunday, when we went by motorbike to Ariwara, where a youth concert took place and the place of CECA 20 Ariwara was packed.
Easter Monday we had an early start at 6am and a stop was made in Aru where we picked up more delegates (and had a meal). Until around 4.15pm we had smooth going, but then we got stuck behind trucks. And were not able to make any more progress. A truck packed with wood (planks and the like) had capsized and had touched two trucks in its fall. All three wouldn’t move. A fourth truck was blocking the only part of the road that was kind of okay, but too muddy for the truck to go on. And we had to pass the night there, together with about forty or fifty other trucks. That is called ‘Congo roads hazards’.
The next day it took another two hours before we finally got on the way, and got stuck again about 10 km further down the road. That took all morning. It was the middle of the afternoon that we finally arrived in Bunia and were welcomed with a meal at the church.
General Assembly took four days and were intens and hard work. But also, revisiting with old friends and making new friends. It was an Assembly in which we were to vote for another church president, and we did that on Saturday, April 27. And all the candidates that were chosen in leadership were chosen with unanimous votes. It was great to see that the Lord brought unity among so many voting members.
It has been a good time to make new friends, as I mentioned earlier. One new friend works as a pastor in Uganda, and with him I have made plans to organise the workshop ‘Channels of Hope’ in Uganda after they have had their board meetings in Koboko. Because Koboko is not far at all from Adi, we have opted for that time somewhere in June. I started translating the participant syllabus back into English. I will go to teach with Ayila, who helped me in Durba in October. The only thing is that Ayila doesn’t speak English and has to do the teaching in Swahili. It will be another workshop with several languages!
CECA is the church denomination AIM, and several other mission organisations work with here in the DR Congo. It has its office in Bunia and works in three regions, 11 church districts and around 60 church sections. Adi, where I am based, is the seat of the church district of Adi and of the section of Adi.
Next week CECA organises its General Assembly and as a missionary in Adi District I am one of its delegates. We will leave for Aru after Easter service and continue to Bunia by bus on Easter Monday.
It is an important assembly as we will choose a new Church President. Reverend Kokole Idring’i Jean-Pierre has been president since 2004. He was voted in during the first assembly I attended as a listener (I was one of the people counting the votes then).
Please pray for travel mercies, and that the General Assembly will be led not by men but by God’s Holy Spirit and that the man of God’s choosing will be chosen to succeed Reverend Kokole as church president.
AIM has decided to gradually remove the blog site called AIM Sites, where I have been blogging more frequent than posting things here. That will change from now on. I will see how to move things from there to this site, but will see first which posts have not been written on the two blogs. So bear with me.
This month I am pretty busy. I will have to finish my report over the year 2018, and quickly at that, as the end of this month I will go to Bunia for the General Assembly of CECA 20. I want my report in well before that so they will be able to read and comment.
Also I will see to get at least a link from AIMsites to this one, so that you who go there will be send to this site instead.