Summer 2016 :: Dan Tyrrell, Kingdom Workers Program Manager: Africa
A group Lutherans from the Caribbean island of Antigua traveled to Malawi in Africa to share the Easter story with hundreds of kids.
“Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation!” This was the verse that encouraged members of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Antigua to volunteer through Kingdom Workers. In addition to two teams serving in the USA last summer, a group of five Antiguans spent three weeks in Malawi this spring to help run the Easter for Kids program at two different village churches.
The Antiguan volunteers described their time in Malawi as an “eye-opening experience.” For several, it was their first experience with international travel. One volunteer described her first time worshiping with Malawian believers:
“The service was attended by many of the surrounding villages. WHAT A CELEBRATION THAT WAS! I did not understand many of the words that were spoken as the language was foreign to me, but this I tell you, you could feel the Holy Spirit’s presence in the church. The singing was unlike anything I have ever heard or seen even on television. What a joy that was to see Jesus in the mix there through the people. I was humming and singing even though I had no idea what was being sung.” Emalyn, Antiguan volunteer
Kids’ programs, like Easter for Kids, are excellent outreach tools for the Malawian Lutheran Church. By providing a high quality program, run by local and visiting volunteers, the church is showing their commitment to serving their community. That commitment translates to new families joining churches, and hearts and homes being changed by the power of God’s word.
“I saw God's hand working on this trip because the children were eager to answer questions. They had a smile on their faces when they made the crafts and joy in their hearts when they were singing songs .” Montara, Antiguan volunteer
This trip wasn't a simple cultural exchange; it was a unique opportunity for Antiguan Lutherans to join with Malawian Lutherans in teaching children about Christ’s work. Having a group from Antigua was a great chance for Malawian Kingdom Workers staff to get to know Christians from a different culture. Although it took a little time to adjust to different accents, local KW staff had a great time showing the Antiguans around Malawi. “They were a nice group to work with. They were well disciplined, and they always had a plan for what they were doing! ” Grem, KW Malawi staff
“The kids were all there excited to learn what we had to teach them about the word of God. Each day the numbers grew, and we all pulled through as team to make it work (Michael, Antiguan volunteer).”
“These children were so happy to be there. We watched their faces as we told the story of our Lord’s Death, Resurrection and Ascension. It just filled my heart with love. (Emalyn, Antiguan volunteer).”
Africa Programs Manager: Malawi
Community Development Manager: Malawi
Also in Malawi
New Bikes for the disabilities ministry volunteer teams. These bikes will help them reach disabled people who live far from the church or in hard to reach places. Some people served by this ministry live so far away from the teams that they can only be visited once every two or three months. The goal is to increase the amount of times they can hear a worship at the cross service and receive encouragement.
KW works closely with The Lutheran Home Association’s and local experts to train up these volunteers. The Jesus Cares Ministry is a great blessing to the soul care of disabled people in Malawi.