Jesus “On the Road” In Uganda – Report by Pr Bonifresh
Mar 2, 2016 1433
Our Mission at Kangulumira, Kampala Uganda, in January 2016, kicked off on a high note. Rebecca Gonzalez and Amy Adcock, our guests, arrived safely. On the ground, our small team, together with Spring of Hope, had been hard at work to see that everything happened according to plan. For the same reason David had arrived from Belgium a few days earlier. Moses Lukwago would assume the many role of translator, driver, and co-evangelist.
The mission would begin with a three-day youth seminar with Rebecca as the main speaker, aided by Pr Bonifresh.
The night before the seminar, we visited the venue – a church hall, situated at the middle of a typical African shopping centre. We found out that over 30 youths had already arrived and more were still coming. That was encouraging. It is not easy to gather that number of people on the day before the kick off!
That very night, together with Moses, we walked along the shopping centre, inviting the residents to the seminar, and many expressed their willingness to attend.
As the programme began on the evening of the following day, Moses took to the stage to do the introductions and to welcome the visitors. You could tell that the youths were excited to see the two muzungus (westerners) who had come all the way from Australia to talk to them about Jesus. At this introductory meeting, we also sang and prayed, and anticipated the blessings of the next day. That night, back in our residential place, we went through our three-day programme and made some minor changes that we thought were necessary.
The next day, Rebecca gave her first gospel presentation in Africa. Her theme was “On the road.” Her presentations were all based on encounters in the gospels that people had with Jesus. The audience was keen to grasp every word that she uttered, and the translator did a great job in bringing the message home in the Luganda language. I was the next in line to speak; I gave a 25 minute talk with much difficulty.
The reason why I gave the talk with great difficulty was that during the following night I fell sick. I had be be taken to Kampala, where I was admitted to hospital, and I missed the next two days, but Rebecca was strong enough to cover for me.
She would later make altar calls that would appeal to over twenty people. On the final day, they were baptized in river Nile. Rebecca personally prayed with each individual after the baptism. It was beautiful.
That was the end of phase one of the Kangulumira gospel mission. In the next three weeks, Rebecca and Amy in the company of Moses and I would visit various clinics, hospitals and homes in and around Kangalumira and Nazigo. In addition, we would visit various homes where people with disabilities lived.
One muzungu [the name given to people from the west in East Africa] named Allison was at the Spring of Hope clinic there giving physiotherapy to the little angels. From the time that we met her, Allison became our companion in visiting the disabled in Kangulumira. We would enter a home, introduce ourselves and then listen to the patient’s stories of how they became disabled.
One case was particularly touching. There was this boy whose limbs could not stretch. However he seemed exceptionally bright and determined to live. He said that he wanted to be a lawyer in future. We visited a home where the father and son were disabled. Some of the people thought that the family was cursed – that is how superstitious Africa can sometimes be. In most of these homes, Rebecca gave a short talk and then we prayed for the family. On the road, as we travelled from place to place, we continued visiting the neglected, and giving them the hope that is found only in Christ.
The two student mid-wives went through a rather strange experience, not possible elsewhere except in Africa. I heard Rebecca confess once and I quote, “This is nothing like we are used to in Australia.” She was talking about the way African midwives deliver the babies. In Africa, as opposed to Australia and perhaps other western countries, you do more than just shout “push”, “you can do it”. etc. Although they did not have to assist with any deliveries, Rebecca and Amy’s services came handy in giving antenatal and post-natal care to the mothers.
A lady by the name of Christine was very excited to have Rebecca and Amy in her little clinic. She told us how she started the clinic from scratch. One day Rebecca and Amy had to minister to around 50 expectant mothers who had gathered at Christine’s request.
We had another great opportunity to minister at the Spring of Hope centre. The organization was donating drugs to epileptic patients. They were around 40 of them – men, women and children. We realized that the group was a mixture of both Muslims and Christians. This made witnessing very tricky, given that there was a mosque just a few meters from the Spring of Hope premises. My experience with Muslims came in handy and I suggested that it would be wise to give them a general talk as opposed to giving a Christian talk. After this, we would give them a chance to have a personal talk with either Rebecca or I. We selected two rooms where the patients would visit us. This way we were able to talk about Christ to those whom we found receptive.
Back at our temporary home, we had the pleasure of hosting some Mormon missionaries almost every evening – three whites and one African from Malawi. They were on their mission, and were feeling lonely and grateful for some company also. They were good guys to talk to; we would share our experience of the day with them and they would do the same. We shared the Gospel with them also. One morning as they passed by, they noticed that I was unwell. So they came with anointing oil and prayed for me.
Each day came with new surprises and experiences. We encountered people of different needs, all of whom we committed to Christ with prayers and thanksgiving. The days moved faster than we expected; had we had the option, we would have extended our time at Kangulumira. The people of Kangulumira felt the presence of God’s mercy and their hearts were revived. Many came to a knowledge of the Good News of Jesus Christ. We thank all those who contributed to make this event a reality.
Abundant Peace and Grace.
Pr Bonifresh Muhollo