Our Tanzanian Companions
By Cathy Milejczak
Companion Synod Network
The Tanzania Companion Synod’s relationship continues to be a blessing for both South Carolinians and the Uwanji, the largest tribe in the South Western Diocese. Recently the Tanzania Mission Team 2018 enjoyed a visit to the South Western Diocese. We had the opportunity to visit the schools, churches, clinics, women’s group and orphanage within the diocese. We were warmly greeting everywhere we went.
The Vacation Bible School held at the village of was a real highlight of the trip. To laugh and play with these children was paramount. We sang, read a Bible story, had a snack, did crafts, had oral hygiene instructions, and really enjoyed outside play with hula hoops, jump ropes, Frisbees and balls. It was hard to determine who enjoyed it more, the team or the children.
The team visited Itamba Secondary School. We were pleased to see the progress of the rebuilding of the burned dormitories. We were especially excited to see the new bunk beds that were being built. The replacement of the beds and other furnishings was a project of the South Carolina Women of the Evangelical Church in America (SCWELCA). SCWELCA women are going to be so excited to see the furniture that is being built.
We spent some time at the clinics. We visited the patients in the clinic including a new born. The team spent a lot of time unpacking and moving the clinic supplies from the storage area to the clinic that had been delivered to the diocese. These were all the layettes, home health kits, and other medical supplies collected by many groups and individuals and shipped via Global Health Ministries. We toured the facilities and found that two of our buildings are in poor shape. The ward building at Magoye clinic and the administration/clinic office building at Kimani are in need of being replaced. The Tanzania Companion Synod Committee is in the process of raising funds to have these buildings rebuilt. We are excited about the donations that we have received and are praying that we will have enough funds to get started on the buildings soon.
We had the opportunity to visit the orphans. We found out that our orphans are growing up way too quickly. Eight of the twelve children finished primary school this year. They will sit for their exams soon. Those who pass will be able to continue their education at Itamba Secondary school.
The Tanzania Companion Synod network hopes to help these children with their tuition. The cost of the school year is $750. If anyone is interested in sponsoring an orphan to go to school please let us know. The orphans were happy to show us the new bedding they received from generous donations. We also presented them with clothes and school supplies. The team always enjoys spending time with these children.
What turned out to be one of the team’s favorite activity was the home visits. We had the opportunity to visit several of the homebound people. We walked through the village to these homes. Sometimes we were invited into the homes and other times we met with them outside. Through interpreters we learned about the person’s life. We sang songs and prayed with them. The visits were enjoyed by all.
We worshiped at Mogoye Lutheran Church. We enjoyed being with the people in worship. We appreciate that Steve Reed from Shepherd of Sea Lutheran Church volunteered to be our pastor. He delivered a message that was appreciated by all. Many of the people that we were working with during the week or that live near the Mission House where we stay worship at Magoye so it was good for all of us to be together in worship.
Participation in a mission experience is not a requirement to be a member of the Tanzania
Companion Synod Network. If you have an interest in joining in on the activities that support our ministry please let Cathy Milejczak or one of our team members know and we will get you on board.
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