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These Are Our Children

by Brenda Wilkinson

 
Bishops Morrison and Machado smile for the camera.
Bishops Morrison of Troy Annual Conference (left) and Machado of Mozambique (right) at Voorheesville UMC, NY, standing near a batik that was a gift to an earlier VIM team from Bishop Machado.
Image by: Holly Nye
Source: GBGM Mission News

Bishop João Somane Machado of Mozambique traveled throughout the Troy Conference October 26-29 affirming the power of the conn

Bishop João Somane Machado of Mozambique traveled throughout the Troy Conference October 26-29 affirming the power of the connectionalism and encouraging continued response to the United Methodist Bishops' Appeal of "Hope for the Children of Africa." Excerpts of his remarks at the Voorheesville United Methodist Church (as reported by George Klohck and Holly E. Nye) of the Troy Conference follow:

Using opportunity of his travel to the U.S. for the United Methodist Council of Bishops' Meeting, Bishop Machado traveled throughout upstate New York to personally thank United Methodists on behalf of the people of Mozambique, for all who had prayed, given financial support and/or served as volunteers in the flood disaster of last Winter and Spring. He also gave an update on how funds received from the United Methodist Bishops' Appeal of "Hope for the Children of Africa" are being used--and asked for continued support in this much needed effort.

Recalling devastation of the floods, Bishop Machado spoke of entire villages being destroyed along with livestock and produce. He noted the disasters which followed the floods: land mines that surfaced; polluted water supplies; and the rapid spread of mosquitos.

"Scarcity of money for rebuilding homes meant that many people were left to sleep outside, and vulnerable to malaria and other diseases. Many children died," he said.

There is the health issue of the HIV/AIDS crisis that plagues all of Africa, about which Bishop Machado also spoke. He ended with comments on the international debt situation, stressing that high interest rates paid by Mozambique and other poor countries continue to drain resources that are desperately needed to educate and care for children, many of whom are orphans.

"These are our children," he declared. " Even though others have given birth to them, even though they may be far way, even though they may be of a difference race and speak difference languages, they are our children!"

Despite the hardships endured by the people of Mozambique, their faith in God and commitment to care for one another remains strong. "Our churches are growing," he concluded, "and we appreciate so very much the volunteers from our partner churches in the U.S., who come as friends to work and those who give to help make life better."


 
See Also...
Topic: Christian love Missionaries Volunteers
Geographic Region: AfricaMozambiqueNorth Eastern U.S.United States
Source: GBGM Mission News
 
 

arrow icon. View Listing of Missionaries Currently Working in: Africa    Mozambique |    United States |   

Date posted: Nov 06, 2000