Here are a few updates from our brothers and sisters in the two Congo countries.
Special Children’s Day in Kinshasa – December 25
On Christmas Day in Kinshasa, the capital city of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a large special fellowship meeting was held. This day-long event was dedicated to the many children in the local fellowships. It was a very festive time and included much singing and teaching as well as performances by the children. Some of the older children were given the opportunity to teach, and others gave musical performances. There were also many games and contests for the kids and small gifts for everyone.
Kennedy Kutukwa, who oversees the fellowships, specifically chose this day to honor the children. Since many children live in homes where they cannot afford even the basic necessities, many do not have the means to give gifts at Christmas. He wanted every child to know how special they are in the eyes of God and to realize they, too, are honored members of the body of Christ.
Miraculous Healings Result in New Church Planting
In Pointe-Noir, a coastal city in the Republic of the Congo, a man named Charlie Okosoko had been suffering from severe ulcers for over nine years. He had been hospitalized multiple times and underwent repeated surgeries, yet his condition continued to worsen. To add to his difficulties, his elder son suffered severe bleeding from his nose, and despite a surgery, his health also continued to deteriorate. It turns out that his younger son was a drug addict and was stealing money to support his habit. Furthermore, he also practiced witchcraft. He had been casting spells against his parents using a potion in order to control them. (Witchcraft is commonly practiced in the Congo.)
In desperation, Charlie finally sought help from some of the saints in that city. Armel Ngo, the country leader of the fellowships, describes what happened next. “As these situations became increasingly unbearable, Mr. Okosoko contacted the leaders of the church at Pointe-Noir, asking them to intercede for him and his family. For three days, many saints from the city gathered in his house and conducted prayer sessions, after which a miracle of God occurred. The man became totally healed of his ulcers, and his son was completely delivered by the hand of God.”
As a result of this miracle, which many witnessed firsthand, more people have been won to the Lord. Charlie has opened his home to make it a house church location, and about 20 saints now attend fellowship there.
This is not the only new house church that has been planted recently. In the city of Ollombo, where a team of “Soul Winners” was sent late last year, a new church now exists with about 15 believers attending.
School Sponsorship Update
This year, a total of 61 children from the fellowships in the DRC are being sponsored by saints elsewhere in the world who have offered to pay for their tuition. Since there is little or no public schooling in these areas, these children would have been unable to attend school, or their attendance would have been intermittent, because of the financial burden of paying for it.
Recently, four of these children have taken it upon themselves to express their thanks to God for His provision for their schooling by starting a praise band called “The Dove of the Way Restored.” They perform frequently at large meetings.
Following this example, another boy who was sponsored this school year for the first time founded a choir with a few other students. They call themselves “The Bright Star of the Way Restored,” and they also play frequently at gatherings. Sounds like they are in for a lot of good praise music over there this year!
Interested in Sponsoring a Child?
If sponsoring a child for their schooling sounds like something the Lord is putting on your heart, you can get involved for the upcoming school year which begins at the end of August. You will need to contact Living Hope by July 1 if you are not already a sponsor. The cost for one child is $480 for the entire year, which includes tuition costs plus some money for books and uniforms. (Children wear uniforms so that no child is ridiculed for the poor appearance of his or her personal clothing.)
Sponsors are matched up with a particular child and receive some information on him/her, so that they can pray for that one and the family.