This article was originally published in the August 2023 edition of ITMI Monthly.
Charl and his co-worker, Dr. Bradley Kuhn, have a message of thanks for those of you who got involved.
In a mid-June email, ITMI’s Charl van Wyk explained to his supporters some dire needs due to flooding in the informal settlement of Stone Hill, where Charl is part of a team that does ongoing outreaches.
Now, Charl and his co-worker, Dr. Bradley Kuhn, have a message of thanks for those of you who got involved. Charl writes,
Our community of believers truly went the extra mile to help the suffering. This is how our ministry chair, Dr Bradley, thanked our friends:
A massive "Thank you!" to all those who responded so generously, and so quickly, to the call for help in Stone Hill. May God bless you all!
A wonderful and servant-hearted team of women and young people lead by Lwazikazi Sokutu were able to provide shelter for destitute families in our [reclaimed] church building, with warm dry blankets, and a hot meal of vegetables.
The team then sacrificed their public holiday the following day to hand out food and dry clothes to those most affected by the storms, as well as those whose leaking roofs wet all their belongings.
But without those who gave so promptly and freely, this was not possible.
Thank you again. And please keep this community in your prayers.
An exciting opportunity in the Democratic Republic of Congo
Meanwhile, the Lord is doing something exciting in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and he’s using Charl and his supporters in an exciting way.
Throughout its history, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has endured numerous challenges that undermine its progress and hinder its development.
One of the major obstacles to a healthy society is political instability. The cycle is as dismal as it is predictable: Political instability manifested by corruption, worsened by weak governance, and exacerbated by armed conflicts.
The outcome is a fragile security situation, displacement of millions, and widespread human rights abuses. The country also grapples with destitute circumstances. A large portion of the population lives below the poverty line, lacking access to basic services such as healthcare and education.
Unsurprisingly, the DRC suffers from inadequate infrastructure, limited access to clean water and sanitation, and rampant disease outbreaks, including ebola and cholera.
All these issues create complex challenges that need to be addressed for the country to achieve any semblance of stability—much less future development.
Hope, however, is rising.
Since Felix Tshisekedi became president of the DRC in January 2019, the country has witnessed several notable political changes and developments, including:
The first peaceful transfer of power in DRC's history since independence in 1960—a significant milestone for the country.
Unexpectedly, Tshisekedi formed a coalition government with the ousted Common Front for Congo (FCC) party, of Kabila, which previously held a majority in the parliament.
Tshisekedi initiated a process of national reconciliation, aiming to heal divisions within the country. He called for dialogue and engagement with churches, politicians, civil society, and armed groups to pursue unity and stability.
The administration has expressed commitment to improving human rights – a vital priority as many violations blanket the official records. Efforts have been made to address issues such as arbitrary arrests, press freedom, and freedom of expression.
Fighting corruption and promoting good governance remain key priorities under Tshisekedi's presidency. Efforts to address corruption within the government and state institutions persist, although progress remains a significant challenge.
Tshisekedi has sought to strengthen international relations and improve the DRC's image on the global stage. He has engaged with regional leaders, participated in diplomatic initiatives, and aimed to attract foreign investment to promote economic development, which despite the Covid chaos reached 8.6% in 2022. Unfortunately, China is a big player in Africa, complicating matters greatly.
I’ve witnessed how Christian leaders have publicly and boldly exposed state officials for evil deeds. However, challenges remain in fully implementing commitments and ensuring comprehensive protection of rights.
It is important to note that political dynamics in the DRC are intricate and multifaceted, and this makes ministry just as complicated. But we know that God’s Word has the answers to all the complex socio-political challenges.
I have in the past mentioned how I was invited to meet with the President’s closest advisor.
Our meeting was called due to a series of Biblical Worldview Seminars conducted in 2006, and 2015. Isn’t that amazing?
Our teams have taught in Lubumbashi, Mbuji-Mayi, Kinshasa and Kisangani – training God’s people and preparing them to stand for righteousness and truth in the public arena.
The new government officials from around the Congo were aware of these Biblical Worldview Seminars, and therefore connected with Bishop Lamba Lamba to help move the ideas forward.
Bishop Lamba Lamba has now invited me back!
The DRC is aiming to hold national elections in December 2023. And I’ve been invited to bring a team of godly leaders – “men who have understanding of the times, to know what Congo ought to do” – to help train and prepare Christian leaders to serve as God's servants for the good of the Congolese people.
Would you like to support such an outreach prayerfully and financially?
I’m pretty sure Satan will do much to try and derail such teachings, as God willing, it will further disrupt the enemy’s now dwindling influence in the DRC.
Our team, Lord willing, aims to train 200 Christian leaders, preach at multiple church services, conduct citywide radio and television interviews, and wait upon the Lord to see how His Holy Spirit uses the hearers to disciple the people of Congo.
Thank you in advance for your prayers. Spiritual warfare is palpable in the DRC.
But with the Lord, victory is already won!
Visiting the States to share about your impact!
Charl will be in the States starting mid-September, sharing stories of the impact he and his supporters, by God’s grace, have been able to make in South Africa, DRC and Zimbabwe. He’ll share personal experiences and reflections or engaging Q & A sessions, encouraging listeners in the Lord.
He’d love to be an encouragement to you, your small group, Sunday school class, or church.
Please contact our office if you are interested.
Thank you for your support of ITMI godly nationals like Charl, who the Lord is using powerfully for His kingdom.
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About the Authors
Steve Evers has advocated for and served the ITMI partners as ITMI Director since 2001. Approximately once a year, Steve visits with ITMI partners in their countries and brings stories back to encourage supporters. Steve enjoys photography and mechanics (both hobbies that have greatly benefited ITMI partners!) Prior to becoming ITMI's Director, Steve served on the Board of Directors for 4 years. Steve lives in Arizona with his wife, Darlene.
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