A Look at Short Term MissionsWritten by Jacob Prasch
Ebyown Childrens Village is still at an early stage. Our problems are at a foundational level, which means there is plenty to do for everyone as we see the site grow in preparation for the arrival of orphans. This means that short term missions are something we want to develop and encourage and no better way to do this is to introduce you to our first visitors from overseas, Ian and Beryl Collins from the UK.
Ian is a Jack of all trades, running his own gardening business near Wigan, Lancashire in the UK, he is the kind of man who can set his hands to anything, which for Ebyown is a real blessing.
Beryl has been a district midwife for over 30 years and although the clinic has not been opened yet, using her own words, she is putting into practice her diplomas in cooking, cleaning, scrubbing floors and painting. It has been wonderful having them both as they are mature, parental figures who have added a positive aspect to the team.
I thought it would be good to have a look at mission fro their perspective so I gave a simple interview during a well earned coffee break.
Q: How did you hear about Ebyown?
A: We remember two years ago you visited to speak at Hindley christian Fellowship, which is our home church. We were interested in the work but at the time God didnt speak to us about the work. This year was different though and God began to speak to us about visiting and lending a hand wherever we could.
Q: What were you expectations workwise and spiritually?
A: Workwise, we thought the project was a lot further on than it is. We didnt realise that you had only occupied the site from November and in fact with mentioning a house we thought the children would be here sooner. We didnt realise the complications you were having with building regulations and other permits. But saying that we are glad to be in at grass roots level and we hope to see the project through to the end. Spiritually its been great. The daily devotionals are very open and honest and it really sets the trend for the day.
Q: What kind of work have you been doing during your stay?
A: That's simple, painting, demolishing unsafe buildings, putting up fensing, clearing rubble, whatever needs to be done alongside the daily chores that helps the team work together. We have also been visiting an orphanage and getting involved with the two local church plants. On our second day we were also taken to Kwazulu mission to have a look at their building needs and this proved fruitful.
Q: Any high points or low points in your visit up to now?
A: Many, many high points, we have enjoyed everything. Although the Kwazulu visit where we visited Jostinas Kraal was a demonstration of what God can do in a person's life. To see how lives can be touched by the practical side of the gospel and how they have been tought to help themselves by setting up small businesses and looking to the Lord. Caleb, Sophie and Salvadore are doing a great job at organising this and of course little Malachi is beautiful. Low points, none really although the encounter with our first snake left Beryl running back to the house for help.
Q: What message will you be taking back to the UK?
A: Get moving and get out here to help, its that simple. The project is still at grass roots level, although finances are still needed to complete the village we need builders, plumbers, carpenters and electricians as we go along. It's a very rewarding thing to do.
Q: Would you come again?
A: Definitely and we are thinking of doing so already.
Beryl and Ian will be heading back to the Uk on the 21st of Jan after spending 6 weeks with us. But we also have another team of visitors, all the way from Australia. David Mule, Robert Santamaria and Anthony Nizeti hail from Sydney and I first met them while speaking at The Italian Evangelical Church pastored by Sam Mule.
The Aussie team have brought a variety of Building, gardening and computer skills with them and have really got stuck into the spirit of things and are bringing their own style of Aussie humor. They are working incredibly hard and have formed a great working relationship with everyone here, especially Ian. I cannot believe the amount of work they have achieved already, with workers like this we will have made a huge headway towards our final destination.
Maybe the thought of short term missions is something that you have concidered but have not known how to go about it? Well its more simple than you think, all you have to do is concider the following.
- Be able to find your own airfare and insurance
- Be able to chip in towards food and travel if necessary
- Be in reasonable health
- Have a skill to offer
- Be willing to chip in with chores and have a good work ethic
- Choose an area of Mission, Ebyown, Kwazulu for example
- Be able to supply a pastor's reference
Then it's just about coordinating dates with myself, its as simple as that. Why not be in this at the beginning. God is doing great things and our invitation is open to anyone who loves the Lord and wants to experience mission African style and make a difference to our HIV/Aids impoverished communities.
Moriel Missions Southern Africa
PO Box 10807
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