“Then I heard the voice of the Lord asking: Who will I send? Who will go for us? I said: Here I am. Send me.”Isaiah 6:8
Our heart at Developing Workers is to partner with ministry leaders here and around the globe to help them impact their community for the Kingdom of God. For the last year we have been praying for so many of these leaders around the world and longing for the day when some of the COVID-19 restrictions would be lifted so we could be back on the field with them. We want to be there in person to help meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of their underserved community. God answered our prayers and we are excited to announce that we are going to Tanzania!
How it Happened
A few months ago, we started seeking God’s guidance and making plans to travel again with a Mobilize Medical team. We assembled a team of seasoned DW volunteers, a group we knew could be flexible as we navigate the uncharted waters of COVID-19. We first looked to Kenya, one of our familiar and long time ministry partners. All of the doors
quickly opened and we had the small team of seasoned travelers ticketed! But then a week later, Kenya went on complete lockdown again and we had to cancel all of those plans.
Feeling God’s call to persevere, we reached out to another ministry partner in Ecuador. Again, we initially had a green light to go, but shortly after ticketing our team, we felt God closing the door to Ecuador. It became clear that we would not have enough patients to see due to COVID social distancing restrictions and Ecuador heading into a partial lockdown.
Determined not to give up and still feeling God’s call to go, we looked to Tanzania where our Foundations team had developed a relationship with a dedicated pastor named Peter in Ketumbeine Tanzania. (Pastor Peter attended our Developing Workers Pastor’s Conference in Kenya in 2019.) We had initially considered taking a team to Pastor Peter’s community but they have not yet had an opportunity to be part of a Mobilize team. We felt that asking them to host such a complex clinic could prove to be tricky. Then one of our new CSI team members introduced us to a new friend in Tanzania named Oshumu. Oshumu is 26 and has been assisting medical teams since he was 12. He agreed to help us coordinate our clinics. We asked Oshumu if he would be willing to serve along side Pastor Peter. God continues to amaze us in that these two gentleman from two different contacts are actually good friends!
So after 3 times of ticketing our team (and hours and hours of being on the phone with the airlines… ticketing, refunding, ticketing, refunding, ticketing), our Mobilize Medical team is going to Tanzania near the end of May! Pastor Peter and Oshumu are already busy preparing for our arrival. They are communicating with the community about the clinics. They are obtaining permission from the country health officials for our medicine and supplies to be allowed into Tanzania, and they are organizing volunteers.
There are many new tasks to navigate as we figure out how to safely travel with COVID still present in our world. We would covet your prayers!
Please pray for:
- Pastor Peter and Oshumu as they prepare for the medical team
- the Ministry of Health to grant us permissions to bring in medicine and supplies.
- Guidance as we navigate COVID and social distancing while gathering people for clinic each day
- COVID testing for the team. We are seeking permission for the local hospital to come to the team to do our COVID testing before departure. This would save us much travel time and allow us to focus on an additional day of clinic.
- Safety and wellness for the team
- That as the team tests for return home that no one would test positive for COVID or be delayed
- For God to prepare the hearts and minds of the people we will serve Lord prepare their hearts to receive you. As we strive to meet their physical needs Lord we know you alone can draw them to yourself. Give us words to say to communicate the truth of the gospel.
- For God to direct us as we develop our Community Safety Initiative (CSI) program in this new community.
In the past our CSI program focused solely on children and was called the Child Safety Initiative. However we found that adults in the greater community also had significant safety needs. We now feel called to address these needs of the adult populations in these communities as well as the children we serve. Therefore we have decided to change the name of CSI to the Community Safety Initiative. This will better reflect our intentions of helping those in the communities we serve. Our CSI team in Tanzania will also be training local partners to screen, identify and disciple the most at risk and vulnerable.
“Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”Psalm 82:3-4
We have a lot to learn on this trip to Tanzania that will help us in our planning for future travel. Once we are more comfortable with how travel looks today, we will open the registration for new trips. We are considering two other Mobilize Medical trips this Fall.
Tanzania again in late September
Kenya in late November
We are praying that we can continue to move forward and bring our teams to underserved communities! Will you please pray with us? We will send out a notice once these trips are confirmed and ready for registration.
God is on the move!