Congo Daily Life, Part 2

Kalonda Bible Institute

We are continuing Brad’s account of his trip to the DRC this past March.
The following is the second story in this series.

During my visit to the southern Kasai region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, I made a trip to a Bible school about 5 kilometers from where I lodged. I met a young couple with great smiles and the “joy of the Lord” evident on their faces. He was a pastoral student at the Bible school.

The next day I met them again at a MCC food relief distribution area. We conversed briefly before they left. My friend filled in the details about this couple’s recent experiences.

For safety concerns and in order to save money, the husband and wife had agreed that she would stay in her home village while he relocated to a different area for Bible school. While they were apart, her home village came under attack. She was forced to run into the forest with their ten-month-old son and hide. She hid in the forest for several weeks. While they were in hiding, the ten-month-old child died.

Joseph, Brad’s host

The families blamed the couple for all that happened because they had chosen to live in different locations. Later she became pregnant again only to lose the child before it was born. Again the family blamed them. They told the couple if they had properly sacrificed a chicken this would not have happened.

With the help, compassion, and teaching of my friend, this couple is working through the trauma that sought to destroy their lives. Through trauma counseling—healing and forgiveness classes—they are moving forward with their lives. Their renewed faith in God has enabled them to seek resolution with their families. He will be graduating in July and looks forward to being a pastor in his home area. They are now expecting another child.

Please pray that God would bless them with a child, and bring spiritual and emotional healing.

Note: Hope4Congo has been giving each graduate of Kalonda Bible Institute a new Bible and an African Bible Commentary. We purchased carpentry tools several years ago for their carpentry shop and we have helped with the purchase of some books for their library. This school was started sometime in the mid to late 50’s by AIMM.

© 2019 Hope4Congo


Congo Daily Life, Part 1

For the next three weeks Hope4Congo will share a series of stories
from Brad’s most recent trip to the DRC.


Daily Life in Congo means: Hunger, Malnourishment, and Suffering

In March 2019 I visited the provincial capital, Tshikapa, in the Kasai province of the Democratic Republic of Congo. This area was deeply affected by the Kamwina Nsafu uprising. Many people fled for their lives during that time. They left the area and/or went into hiding.

Southern Kasai region’s massacres and mass graves of 2017 have given way to general insecurity. Personal safety concerns remain after two years of poor harvests – hunger and malnourishment. The suffering and pain was palpable as I moved about this region.

I had been to Tshikapa on several occasions in the past but this time was different. Things were tense. People were living on the edge.

Over the next weeks I want to share three stories from my time there in an effort to make us more aware of what life is like for many in Congo as well as other countries where there is extreme political unrest among societies mired in poverty.

During breakfast with our host at Tshikapa, he introduced us to a small girl. She was about seven or eight years old. Scars around both wrists of her crippled hands suggested some type of injury.

My host told me her story. She and her younger sister were at home with their parents when some militia entered their home and fired on the family to kill them. In her terror and fear she hid behind her mother and wrapped her arms around her mother’s waist.

Her father and mother fell to the ground. Terrified and crying, this girl and her little sister ran from their hut through the village. Someone reached out to them to ask what the problem was. They told this person they had been attacked and their parents had been killed by the militia.

This person took the children under her care. She learned that the father had been killed, but the mother survived unharmed. The daughter had saved her mother’s life when she wrapped her arms around her mother’s waist.

The bullets intended for her mother struck this girl in both wrists. The emotional and physical scars may never be fully healed unless someone can reach out to this child and her family to provide the spiritual counseling and care most desperately needed.

Please pray for this dear family. Pray for their spiritual and emotional healing.

© 2019 Hope4Congo

Nothing is Too Difficult for God

by Brad Graber

Hope for Congo participated in the annual Congo Collaboration meetings held in Goshen, Indiana, August 10-11, 2018. Collaboration is the new frontier in efforts to be obedient to the Great Commission: “Go and make disciples of all nations.”

From a human perspective Jesus’ instruction can seem an impossible task. And it would be—if it depended on us alone. But Jesus promised, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

God does not ask us to do the impossible. He asks for our obedience to do what is possible.

As we are obedient to do the possible, God will do the impossible.

Medical Ambassadors shared about the CHE program at our Collaboration meetings on Friday and Saturday. CHE stands for Community Health Evangelism. This program, which is being implemented around the world, focuses on disease prevention measures and promotes healthy living. CHE’s emphasis on holistic health and evangelism is a good method for church planting. The program is built around community ownership and individual involvement.

Community Health Evangelism operates in the Kasai region of the DRC. Over 800 villages utilize the program successfully.

During the Medical Ambassadors presentation they referenced two books: Walking With the Poor  by Bryant Meyers, and Bursting the Wine Skins: The Holy Spirit’s Transforming Work in a Peacemaker and His World  by Michael Cassidy.

Oasis International presented their vision on Saturday. They seek to publish and distribute affordable Christian books and Bibles in English, French, and Portuguese—books designed for individual as well as societal transformation and that seek to give the African Church a global voice.

To produce the African Study Bible, Oasis International utilized 350 African contributors from 50 different countries. Looking at God’s Word through African eyes in this way has produced the most ethnically diverse biblical resource to date. The English edition was launched in 2017.

Access to the Word of God is the most important way to build transformational communities.

These two organizations: Oasis International and Medical Ambassadors reveal the power of collaboration and inspire us to continue our collaborative efforts here at Hope for Congo.

Greater technology is available to help spread the gospel. Billy Graham said, “The harvest fields are riper, the grain is thicker, and the instruments that technology has provided are sharper. I see no reason why we could not touch the entire youth population of the world with the good news of the Gospel—let’s make that our goal.”

Hope for Congo is focused on the next generation in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Let’s ask the Lord of the harvest to send more workers into His fields. Let’s be obedient in giving, praying, and going to the field as God gives us opportunity.

As we are obedient to do what is possible for us to do, God will do the impossible.

© 2018 Hope4Congo

Update on Farm to Market Project at Ndjoko Punda

by Brad Graber

The Farm to Market Project began in January 2018 at Ndjoko Punda under the leadership of Joseph Mbuyi. The purpose is to help alleviate the food crisis in the Kasai through community food production.

The participation of young people is important to the long-term success of the project. Youth will learn through hands-on practice about market gardening and animal breeding principles. Not only will they contribute significantly to the church and their community through their efforts, but they will also grow leadership skills.


We began this project through the purchase of:
• Basic agricultural equipment
• Supplies to build rabbit hutches, fencing,
and corralling for other breeding stock.

• Vegetable seed to plant


As you can see from the photos, the team’s hard work, perseverance, and commitment have contributed to the current successes.

Proceeds from the sale of livestock: rabbits, chickens, pigs, etc. will be used to finance on-going agricultural activities, contribute to the local economy, and raise the standard of living, health, and wellbeing of the local community.

Hope for Congo is motivated to invest in the next generation. We want to provide tools and resources to move the next generation forward.

You, our Hope for Congo donors, and the Schowalter Foundation provide funding for this project. Your continued prayers and donations will help Hope for Congo and our partners at Ndjoko Punda continue this effort. We hope it will grow beyond Ndjoko Punda so they will take what they have learned and share it with other communities.

Donations may be sent to Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission.
Designate your gift for: Hope4Congo’s Farm to Market Project

Mail your tax-deductible US Dollar Donation to:
AIMM (Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission)

1013 Division St.
P.O. Box 744
Goshen, IN 46527-0744

Mail your tax-deductible Canadian Dollars Donations to:
440 Main Street
Steinbach, MB R5G 1Z5

You can also make an online donation at:

On AIMM’s web page, click on the donate tab.
Below the $0.00 Click on the phrase:
“Add special instructions to the seller”
In the area that opens, please note you wish your gift to be
given to Hope4Congo and tell us where you wish your
donation to be used: Farm to Market, Bible, Medical, etc. or wherever needed most.

Thank you for your help and prayers for the people of DRC. We are all volunteers here at the Hope4Congo ministry. No one receives any compensation. Your tax deductible gift goes directly to support the work for the Congolese people.

© 2018 Hope4Congo


Hope for Congo: Providing Hope to the Next Generation

by Brad Graber

Hope for Congo works in the central part of Congo which includes the Kasai provinces where there has been much suffering and community disruption. The political instability has been augmented in the Kasai area by the addition of the Kamuina Nsapu rebellion. This is an ongoing rebellion instigated by the Kamwina Nsapu militia against state security forces in the Kasai region of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

It is primarily an anti-government militia, which initially aimed at eliminating State authorities in the Kasai provinces, including police officers, military, intelligence agents and public officials, as well as symbols of the State, mainly administrative buildings. The Kamuina Nsapu members are reported to be primarily armed with machetes, sticks and hunting rifles and, to a lesser extent, semi-automatic weapons.

Since August 2016, some 1.3 million people in the Kasai have been displaced within the DRC by the violence that has grown out of a locally rooted conflict, while another 30,000 have fled to Angola. Many people have gone into hiding fearful of being out in the open and at risk of being killed or forced to join the militia against their will. Thus far, reports have identified 2,261 children used as fighters by the Kamuina Nsapu.

Children are the main victims of the conflict. UNICEF estimates that 440,000 children have not been able to complete the 2016-2017 school year following the violence, destruction of school infrastructure and killing of teachers.

The increasing violence and displacement in the region have resulted in two lost harvests, exacerbating food insecurity in the country. It is reported that 7.7 million people are now on the verge of starvation.

While the situation is very dire with no definitive resolution in sight there remains hope. One person reporting from their visit to the Kasai, Anne Davies, has seen extraordinary resilience and kindness. She reports, “I was struck by the great generosity of ordinary people. Although they have weathered inexplicable atrocities, they expressed a simple wish to get back on track with normal life. They are traumatised by what happened, but instead of direct handouts of food, they want seeds and tools so they can continue farming,” she says. (Kasai: On the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe August 17, 2017

Hope for Congo works in the Kasai province in the village of Ndjoko Punda. The news we have received corroborates other reports. Currently we have provided seeds and tools for the next planting season.

We look to God to provide the harvest. The younger generation of the community is doing the work (see photo below of garden preparation). This generation needs hope.

Your prayers and giving are a significant part of the hope needed to face the daily struggle to survive. Hope for Congo can be your hands and feet.

Please pray and give generously to keep hope alive for the next generation.

Make your checks payable to: AIMM or Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission 

Designate your donation to:  
Hope 4 Congo and indicate which project you wish to support.
Example (1): “I would like this donation to be given to Hope 4 Congo for the Bible project.”
Example (2): “I would like this donation to be given to Hope 4 Congo for seeds and tools.”
Example (3): “Please apply my gift wherever it is needed most for the Congolese people.”

Send your tax-deductible U.S. Dollar Donations to:
Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission (AIMM)
P.O. Box 744
Goshen, IN 46527-0744

Send your tax-deductible Canadian Dollar Donations to:
Africa Inter-Mennonite Mission (AIMM)
440 Main Street
Steinbach, MB R5G 1Z5

Donations are tax-deductible.
We’re all volunteers here at Hope 4 Congo. No one receives any compensation.

© 2018 Hope4Congo

Kasai Violence Displaces Children

DR Congo Kasai violence displaces 850,000 children

An estimated 850,000 children have been forced to flee fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Kasai provinces, the UN’s children’s agency Unicef reported in July.

This makes it one of the world’s “largest displacement crises” for children.

Many of the affected children are now in foster care or with relatives.

Fighting broke out in Kasai in August 2016 after a traditional leader was killed in clashes with security forces.

It has since escalated leaving more than 3,000 people dead. The UN has also discovered dozens of mass graves in the area.

In all, 1.4 million people have had to leave their homes “with 60,000 uprooted in June alone,” says Unicef’s acting head in DR Congo Tajudeen Oyewale.


This area is in the heart of where Hope4Congo focuses our work.

Prayer Requests:
• Please pray for an end to the violence in DRC
• Please pray for these precious children
• Please pray for the needs (physical, spiritual, emotional) of all Congolese

© 2017 Hope4Congo