Altar Call – Opelika-Auburn News
July 15, 2007
Team leaves tomorrow for another mission trip to
morning ten of my friends and I are flying out of Atlanta
on our way back to African nation of Zambia. It is a very long flight.
We will spend Tuesday night in Ethiopia
and arrive at Lusaka, the capitol of Zambia, on
terminology our group is a “mission work team.” Our hosts will be Alfred and
Muumbe Kalembo, whose ministry is headquartered in Lusaka. Both of them were born in poor
villages in Zambia.
How God raised them up from poverty to an extraordinary ministry to many
nations is an exciting story of God’s grace.
generosity of Christian friends in America,
Alfred and Muumbe live in a large home on the outskirts of Lusaka. They have five children – three sons
and twin daughters. After completing his seminary education at Asbury College
in Wilmore, Kentucky,
Alfred was asked (with his wife) to serve as a regional director of ILI, the International Leadership Institute. ILI is having a global impact by training Christian
leaders across the world. Alfred and Muumbe have responsibility for 10
countries in southern Africa.
to their ILI training work, Alfred and Muumbe
operate several other ministries. They have started two schools for small
children. They are arranging for orphans to be placed in Christian homes with
families that are willing to take them in. Support for the care and housing of
an orphan costs $333 a year. Already they have found a home for more than 40
orphan children. Our church, Saint James UMC, is providing for the care of 22
children who became orphans when their parents died of AIDS.
continues to kill thousands in Africa. A child
dies of Malaria in Africa every 30 seconds.
This need has caught the attention of many Americans who have contributed money
to buy thousands of nets that protect people from the deadly mosquito that
bites only at night. Countless lives can be saved through the use of these nets
that cost only ten dollars apiece.
My friends Scott Kaak and Larry
Hanna will work with me in a conference for pastors in Lusaka. These 40 to 50 pastors serve in
several different denominations in a culture than pays little attention to
denominationalism. Their common love for Christ brings them together in
Our focus in
the conference will be the Gospel of Mark. We will explore with the pastors how
to preach the gospel effectively using the scriptures of this shortest of the
four gospels. We will provide each pastor with a nice Study Bible that they can
use in ministry for many years. Each Bible is a gift from a person or couple in
Our team will
assist in the construction of at least two soccer fields located near schools. In
the teaching of the gospel is welcomed in public schools. School and church
leaders see the value of reaching young people for Christ with a soccer ball.
Once again we
will take our team to visit Victoria Falls,
one of the world’s most beautiful sights. There we will pause beside a statue
of David Livingstone, the Scottish missionary who with his wife did such
extraordinary work in sharing the gospel with the people of Africa.
We will offer prayers of thanksgiving that in small ways we can continue the
amazing work he began on the African continent 160 years ago.
son Alfred taught me a lesson last year that I will not soon forget. He said,
“What you do here is not nearly as important as your presence. Just being here
with us is what makes us realize how much God loves us.” That thought and the
beautiful faces of African Christians are impossible to forget.
By the grace
of God we will return home two weeks later, with haunting memories of terrible
poverty and a greater resolve to use our little share of America’s great affluence to make
life better for some of the least of our brothers and sisters. + + +