Final exams and other news–June 2016

1         Final Exam for our 6th Graders

This month, our 6th graders had to travel to the district examination center to take their final exam, marking the completion of their elementary education. We rented a bus for them and Theo organized accommodation with a local pastor for them to spend a couple nights as the tests lasted for 2 full days. Florence had to bring pots and pans along to prepare meals for them, and we were so thankful to our local donors who donated bread, milk, rice, fish and tomato paste. Of course, we are praying the kids will all pass with flying colors, as they have worked very hard for it.

Our 6th graders at the district examination site.

Our 6th graders at the district examination site.

Eating a good breakfast (camping style) before taking their exams.

Eating a good breakfast (camping style) before taking their exams.

Enjoying a hot meal after the tests.

Enjoying a hot meal after the tests.


2         Scholarship Program

Our project in Kikimi offers primary education and we are in the process of building of secondary school which will open in September. We also offer vocational training, but what about students who wish to pursue higher education, like Jacques who studies agronomy and now Ana, Theo and Florence’s daughter, who wishes to become a doctor, so that she can serve at our Medical Center? Last year we had decided to create a scholarship program, by faith, and set aside donations that would come in for this purpose. We put in the first few hundred dollars out of our own pocket to get it going, trusting the Lord would do the rest. Ana is now taking her final high school examinations, and has already applied to enter medical school at the Protestant University of Kinshasa. To be honest, we have been so busy that we haven’t had any time to focus on fund-raising for this scholarship project, when lo and behold, just a few weeks ago, we received an email from a young woman, herself about to graduate from university, who had read about Ana’s desire to study medicine, and has decided to sponsor her! What a miracle! She said, “My contribution isn't much, but it is meant as an act of gratitude for the opportunities that God and others have given me to get an education and live a rich life so far. I work with youth here doing training programs (with about 3000 young people since I started my studies), and I really believe that youth are the future and very much worth investing in. I hope that Anna and all your kids there are able to eventually enjoy the same opportunity for education.” Needless to say, Ana is totally flipped and doing her best to get good grades in her final exams.

Ana, so thankful for the scholarship

Ana, so thankful for the scholarship

3         Micro-enterprise

Talking about Jacques, the reason he has been able to further his education has been thanks to the faithful support of some dear French ladies who virtually have been giving their widow’s mite to help him. However, he’s been having a difficult time to make ends meet, with tuition costs increasing, so we decided to help him with a capital (from an FCF grant) to enable him to generate some income selling airtime and sim cards as a start, something he can do between classes and in his free time right there on campus.

Jacques, student in agronomy.

Jacques, student in agronomy.

We also helped Gerse purchase the basic medical equipment he needs to be able to visit patients from home, generate income and be a blessing to his community as a medical doctor.

Gerse (left) selecting the medical equipment he will be purchasing thanks to FCF grant. (on the right, Patrick visiting from Bas Congo).

Gerse (left) selecting the medical equipment he will be purchasing thanks to FCF grant. (on the right, Patrick visiting from Bas Congo).

John Kalala (Cedric’s brother who had invited us last month to teach a Bible class on Love) has been working on his own initiative to launch a photo shoot competition that will be aired on TV. For this purpose, he has been looking for local sponsors and after many months of sweat, tears and prayer, is finally seeing his project take shape. We are praying this endeavor will be a springboard for him to generate regular needed income as well as be an avenue to reach top people with His Love.

Ad created by John Kalala for the photo shoot he is initiating.

Ad created by John Kalala for the photo shoot he is initiating.

4         Planning Meetings

Before leaving on our trip, we were able to have meetings with Theo and Florence to plan the next few months, as well as with Patrick, our electrician, who will be installing electricity in the surgery ward that is being built. We have also met with all our Bible teachers, distributing responsibilities between them. They will continue meeting monthly to pray together and plan the Sunday fellowships.

Planning meeting with electrician Patrick (left) and project director Theo (right)

Planning meeting with electrician Patrick (left) and project director Theo (right)

5         Monthly Fellowship

During our last fellowship, Judith and Olivier had prepared the skit “The Time Thief” from our Bible course which was funny and challenging at the same time, exposing all the tricks the devil uses to stop us from reading the Word and spending time with the Lord. Cedric read a devotional article about seeking first God’s Kingdom which had a wonderful message about Matthew 6:33.

Group shot at our last monthly fellowship

Group shot at our last monthly fellowship

Judith performing a skit

Judith performing a skit

Cedric reading devotional article on Mat 6:33

Cedric reading devotional article on Mat 6:33


6         Bible Classes

The 12 Foundation Stones Bible Course continues to be very popular here in Congo, we now have several groups throughout the capital of Kinshasa, plus another group in Matadi, in Bas Congo. We are very thankful for this course, which gives a strong basic foundation in the Word to these young people who are often lost in the diverging doctrines that are being taught in the local churches, and challenges them to do something for the Lord and develop a personal relationship with Him. 

Lajoie, one of Gerse Bible students.

Lajoie, one of Gerse Bible students.

Difficult times have helped me to understand better than before how infinitely rich and beautiful life is in every way, and that so many things that one goes worrying about are of no importance whatsoever. — Karen von Blixen-Finecke (1885–1962)

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In life, you will always be faced with a series of God-ordained opportunities brilliantly disguised as problems and challenges. — Charles Udall

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When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. — Paulo Coelho (b. 1947)

 

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