What can God do in an impoverished community during the challenges of a global pandemic? He can continue to use the gifts, sacrifices, and obedience of His people to show His love to those who are suffering.
The global pandemic has reached its hands into every possible crevice, touching every aspect of life around the globe. Its fingers of suffering and pain have wrapped around each person without discrimination. Yet, those who were most vulnerable before the pandemic often became even more at-risk. Many impoverished children and families live in the Busega community of Uganda, where lockdowns and disease led to the shutdown of schools and places of work. As a result, families struggled to survive. Raphael Kajjubi, the pastor of King Jesus Church and leader of Busega School for the Deaf and Blind, watched as the impact of the virus spread among families.
Thinking that a new year would bring brighter days than in 2020, Pastor Raphael and the Busega community began 2021 with hope, possibilities, and plans “as we had just come out of such a terrible experience during the 2020 lockdown and COVID-19.” However, they were sent into a second lockdown in May 2021, which lasted until September. He explains the consequences of those lockdowns, “These difficult times hit everyone, but the vulnerable were hurt quite badly. Many organizations such as schools, where many of our members work, have been closed the last two years. Busega, in particular, with so many people living in an impoverished setting, was even more difficult.”
However, through their partnership with Lifeline, King Jesus Church and Busega School for the Deaf and Blind was able to step into ministry opportunities and see God work in the following ways:
- They were able to share food rations to struggling families with deaf members on a monthly basis. Pastor Raphael is grateful for this “amazing singular privilege to come alongside families that are so dear to us.”
- They were able to continue paying the staff of the Busega School for the Deaf and Blind throughout the forced lockdowns and school closings. Pastor Raphael described the school team as dedicated men and women who “have loved and served these kids and the church so well for almost a decade.” Being able to continue paying them “in the most difficult times has been such a great testimony to the church and entire community,” he explains.
- A group of men from the church and community came together to clean up the King Jesus church compound and made pavers for it. As a result, the church was able to develop “warm fellowships” with those men and begin many gospel conversations. Many of those men and their families have now joined King Jesus Church.
- King Jesus Church is seeing a growing number of converts to Jesus and, as a result, growth in the church. During such a painful year, they rejoiced at this growth and were grateful to erect a steel frame that will provide more space for the church to meet.
- They were also able to see the beginnings of a new, permanent school for the Busega School for the Deaf and Blind. A foundation was laid for a school building in which at least 100 deaf and blind children will have access to education, an opportunity that would be unfathomable and unattainable without this special school.
Despite the challenges they faced throughout the pandemic, Pastor Raphael is thankful for how your partnership with them through Lifeline enabled their church to be the hands and feet of Jesus in dark days. He communicates his gratitude toward “everyone that has helped us make a difference in this very difficult year of 2021.” He also invites us to continue praying for the ministry there:
- Pray that the new, permanent school for the deaf and blind will be built and finished in God’s timing.
- Pray that the additional church construction can be roofed and completed so the church can continue to engage the heavily Muslim-influenced community.
- Pray that the gospel will influence and transform this very impoverished community as it is in the middle of urbanization forces.
You can learn more about Lifeline’s global partners and how you can get involved by clicking here.