Strength in Numbers – Summer 2017

You know the story that Jesus told a crowd that the Kingdom of Heaven is like yeast (Matthew 13)? It’s a captivating picture where the movement of God can start as something so small and yet when given the smallest opportunity will take over something much larger. That’s the power of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. That’s the same movement that we’re seeing right now in Kilimanjaro.

Our message is simple and found directly from God’s word. “God sets the lonely in families” (Psalm 68). The church in Kilimanjaro has seen what happens when families break down. They see the children living on the streets, they know the relative that placed their kid in an orphanage, they’ve experienced the pain that poverty and disease bring with it. They also know that God is a good Father and is bringing His children close to Him.

At Kingdom Families, we’ve taken a stand to support local churches and families to help push back the tide of family breakdown and see kids restored to loving families. This summer, our in-country staff along with four American interns have been engaging the local communities through family strengthening measures. All of which you can read in greater detail here on the blog.

We’ve had two conferences so far this summer and one more coming up this weekend. We’ve been blessed to partner with Voice of Victory Church in Njoro, Philadelphia Church in Uchira and EAGT Church in Boma’ngombe. These are the areas that we’re committed to right now and are strategically located in three different districts of Kilimanjaro. Beyond that, the pastors (Unity, Meshak and Eli) are men that we’ve worked with for years and we know their character and hearts for the communities they serve. We’re already engaged with families in Njoro through our social services portion of work and now beginning intake with families in Uchira and Boma as well.

In going deeper with these communities, in both Njoro and Boma, we’ve had our interns help out at the church preschools two separate weeks. It is a blessing for the children to experience new games, songs and activities that our interns are able to bring and it was a joy for all of us. Did you know that preschools and day cares are a critical part of family strengthening? We recently had feedback from one of our news articles in a national paper about a man that decided to convert the orphanage he was building into a preschool/day care center. That’s a huge triumph! That’s the difference between an institution that separates families and an institution that strengthens families. Here’s how it works.

An impoverished single mother has a three year old. Though she is willing to work, she is not freely able to work when she has to care for her child. If there is an orphanage down the road, she may elect (as many mothers do) to place her child there so that they can have food and shelter. However, if a low-cost preschool and day care center opens, she can enroll her child there instead. She can now go out and work and make a living for her and her child. Her child is then in a safe environment where education and lunch is provided and at the end of the work day, the family is reunited and stays together day after day without fear of separation.

Our churches have an opportunity to strengthen families wherever we find ourselves. And our partners in the west are also making an impact in families here in Kilimanjaro. We’d love for you to join us. Click over to the Get Involved tab or Donate tab to see how you can be involved in strengthening families in Kilimanjaro.

Published by

Brandon Stiver

I am a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, living and working in Moshi, Tanzania. My wife is named Melissa and we have three children: Moses, Promise and Shepherd. We are directors over an orphan care ministry called Kingdom Families; advocating for the needs of orphans and vulnerable children and assisting families to welcome them into their homes as sons and daughters.

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