An evangelical Anabaptist “family gathering” of African, North American, and European members working together to become an answer to Jesus’ prayer: “Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven”.
Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission: Building a global family of faith
New Praise & Prayer
Congolese literacy leaders stand in solidarity with USA during COVID-19
Seven Mennonite leaders from Democratic Republic of the Congo share love and concern for their brothers and sisters in the United States who are suffering from the world's highest numbers of COVID-19 illness and death.
Greetings to our brothers and sisters in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!
In this time made difficult by the COVID-19 pandemic, our thoughts travel around the world to extend compassion to fellow Anabaptists in our global community. Please keep us updated about your situation. The news that we receive in the media each day informs us that the United States is the country most impacted by the new coronavirus. So, we send our love and our empathy in this message. We have faith that those who hope in God will never be beaten down.
There are no social, economic, or scientific explanations that can account for why Congo, in particular, and the African continent, in general, have largely been spared. We are aware the hand of the Eternal has intervened, so that we have the smallest percentage of COVID-19 deaths, contrary to scientific projections.
Romans 8:35-39 tells us:
Who will separate us from Christ's love? Will hardship, or anguish, or persecution, or hunger, or lack of clothing, or insecurity, or a violent death?... But in all these things, we are more than conquerors in Christ Jesus, who loved us. I have the assurance that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor dominations, nor present events, nor future events, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nothing will be able to separate us from God's love shown in Jesus Christ, our Lord.
We want to show solidarity with you through this passage to show you how much the Eternal God loves us despite this difficult time. We encourage you to live by faith in God's love until God acts on your behalf.
We join ourselves to you in prayer and we ask the Eternal God to multiply protection for you and to bring an end to this pandemic.
Let's stay connected and united in Christ! Let us live in solidarity with each other.
With love and blessings from your brothers and sisters of Programme Mennonite d'Alphabétisation comme Moyen d'Évangélisation (Congolese Mennonite Literacy Program),
Investing in Mukedi
“My mission at Mukedi was to train a new generation of agriculturalists and to help them to produce both quantity and quality. I want to contribute to the emergence of an agro-industrial generation to help our Mennonite community.”
This is how Fils Fuisa described his goal in traveling about 200 kilometers west of his home in Tshikapa in south central Democratic Republic of Congo, to Mukedi in August 2020. Fils, an expert in sustainable agriculture and animal husbandry, holds a bachelor’s degree in agronomy and benefitted from an AIMM scholarship to study and work for 6 months at the Songhai Center in Porto-Novo, Benin.
Fils is now giving back to his community, the Mennonite Church of Congo, by training interested persons in the agricultural techniques he learned at Songhai. He spent 25 days in Mukedi in August and September, working intensively with 8 students. The students first prepared the seed beds, and then sowed a variety of crops under Fils’ watchful eye, including corn, peanuts, Chinese cabbage, amaranth, manioc, and eggplant.
There is renewed hope in Mukedi, a stronger sense of local resourcefulness and possibility, because of Fils’ visit. The visit was jointly sponsored by Hope for Congo and AIMM.
Mennonite Church of Congo's Youth Bible Camp
Mennonite Church of Congo’s annual Youth Bible Camp was held August 18-23, 2020 at Nyanga.
More than 35 youth gave their lives to Christ during this event. A number of them had been pulled or forced into support for Kamuina Nsapu in the months in 2017 when a militia of this anti-government revolt had made its way to Nyanga. “This camp came to liberate us,” they stated.
The theme of this gathering was I Timothy 4:12-13: “Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. Until I arrive, give attention to the public reading of scripture, to exhorting, to teaching.” Organized by youth leaders Robert Irundu and Andre Kalenga, the camp was blessed by the spiritual leadership of Pastor Tshibuabua Tshiza, who led participants in meditating on the theme, and also taught a seminar on Anabaptist history and identity, along with a history of Nyanga station.
Other teachings from which the youth benefitted during the week were: “Preventive practices that protect from COVID-19”, by Dr. Keta; “Consequences of Abortion” and “Young Mennonites Facing Sexually Transmitted Diseases”, by Dr. Kapee; “How to Choose a Good Marriage Partner”, by Rev. Pungi Phanuel; “The Importance of Gifts in the Church”, by Rev. Kibeze; “How to Raise Animals”, by brother Ikapa; “How to Become Financially Independent in order to Support the Local Church”, by brother Mulenda; “Youth Contributions to Church Activities”, by Rev. Mulenga; “Bible Study Methods”, “How to Become a Good Leader”, and “How to Become a Good Entrepreneur”, by Robert Irundu.
A great innovation for this camp was an invitation extended to other Christian churches to send youth leaders. Five persons attended from each of the following communities: the Revival Church; the Kimbanguist Church; the Baptist Church; the Catholic Church; the Malembe Church; and the Church of Blacks in Africa.
A soccer clinic and match were held on Saturday August 22.
Eight persons were baptized in the Nyanga river at the conclusion of camp by Rev. Tshibuabua.
-from a report by Robert Irundu
Women pastors take the lead to disseminate COVID-19 information in Congo
This video includes some vignettes of the tremendous work CMCo women pastors have undertaken in the Tshikapa area to build awareness of the dangers of the coronavirus and steps that can be taken to prevent it. AIMM has been a sponsor of their efforts.
New Africa Journal
Remembering Erwin Rempel
Erwin H. Rempel, 76, died June 25, 2021, at Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community in Harrisonburg, Va. In March, Erwin learned he had both bladder cancer and metastatic pancreatic cancer.
He was born Aug. 8, 1944, in Bell, Calif., a suburb of Los Angeles, to Henry H. and Elisabeth (Eitzen) Rempel. At the age of 12, after his father and mother died just 15 months apart from different cancers, he and his two younger siblings moved to his uncle and aunt’s farm in northeast Montana. Erwin graduated from Grace Bible Institute, Omaha, Neb., where here he met Angela Albrecht from Bloomfield, Mont. They were married June 4, 1966, in Omaha.
Completing seminary, he served as a pastor, international mission worker, and primarily as a mission agency administrator. Erwin and Angela served with Mennonite Mission Network and Commission on Overseas Mission from 1975-2009. Erwin served on the board of AIMM from 1982-1994 and from 2004-2021. Erwin was a member of First Mennonite Church in Newton from 1982-2011.
In 2011, he and his wife moved to Harrisonburg, Va., and he became a member of Ridgeway Mennonite Church where he applied his administrative skills to support a variety of Ridgeway’s outreach ministries. In most of the various places he lived, he enjoyed gardening and planted berries and fruit trees.
Erwin is remembered by former colleagues for his humility, his conscientious and faithful leadership, and his administrative abilities. He is also remembered for his love of nature’s beauty and the wonder he found in the flora and fauna of all the places in which he lived.
Erwin is survived by Angela, his wife of 55 years; daughters Marcia (John) Weaver and Carla (Micah) Hurst; son Marc (Hannah) Gascho Rempel; his grandchildren and his sister.
Memorial gifts may be designated to Mennonite Mission Network at 718 N Main St. Newton, KS 67114-1703; the Erwin Rempel Fund for AIMM Ministries at Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission, P.O. Box 744, Goshen, IN 46527; or Virginia Mennonite Missions at 601 Parkwood Drive, Harrisonburg, VA 22802.
Kalonda Bible Institute Graduation
On Saturday August 8, 2020 Kalonda Bible Institute held its graduation ceremony. Pictured on the photo are, left to right: Ndeke Mungaga from Kasai Luange province, Nyanga district; Bakamana Mbaya from South East Kasai province, Kananga II district;Tshimbila Ntumba from Central Kasai province, Monji district; Ibana Ibana from Kasai North province, Ndjoko Punda district; Tshiela Kalonji from Kasai Central province, Mayi Munene district; Luwandjia Ngumbu from Kasai North province, Madimape district; Katembo Ngamuenyi from Kasai Luange province, Yuka district.
Bible Institute Director Rev. Bercie Mundedi gave the exhortation.
Translated Video Transcript: My name is Shamba, son of Shamba. My wife has been sick for 2 ½ years. I had no more money to pay for an operation for her. When I learned that UMER had come to help, I came with her, and she underwent an operation. I want to say “Thank you!” My wife is deaf and mute. She neither hears nor speaks. We want to say “Thank you!” to UMER, because they operated on my wife without charging us anything. She has now recovered her strength, really recovered her strength, and I thank UMER. I do not have any financial means, may UMER continue to help me always.
Planting & Building
Bellarmé Ngalula and his wife Mimie Kanku are planting the new Trois Rivieres CEM (Evangelical Mennonite) congregation in Bandundu Ville, DRC. Meanwhile, they are also working on construction for their first congregation, The Lord’s Reserve. AIMM is supporting this work through the “African Missionary Support” project.
Leadership Coaching in Kalonda
The Congo Leadership Coaching Network team recently returned from a transformational seminar at the Kalonda Bible Institute.
Ndjoko Punda Emergency