Republic of Congo (Brazzaville)
The Eglise des Disciples du Christ au Congo (EDCC), Church of the Disciples of Christ of the Congo of the Republic of Congo is a relatively young church founded in 1995 as a mission of the Community of the Disciples of Christ of the Congo (CDCC) of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Over 100 years ago, U.S. missionaries founded the CDCC in what today is the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), formerly known as Zaire. The church has been affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States since 1899. Global Ministries helped fund a DRC missionary from the CDCC to the EDCC from 1995 to 2003 at which point the EDCC became autonomous. Global Ministries gladly continues to provide funding for the work of the EDCC.
The Republic of the Congo (RC) is a fragile country that suffered through war in 1997. Economically, the country seems to have somewhat recovered from that tragedy. The economy seems as strong now as it was before the fighting. Socially, the country is still much divided along ethnic and linguistic lines, primarily divided among three major groups. This social division continues to cause problems.
Many people are searching for religion after many years when religion was not encouraged. The churches are growing and the EDCC is working to establish themselves among the Lingala-speaking population of the RC. The growing church is still relatively small.
The primary growth of the EDCC can be seen in the Cuvette and Likouala Regions. Impfondo is the chief town of the Likouala Region and has an EDCC parish of several hundred people. The EDCC has only one church building in the RC and it is located in Brazzaville, which is approximately 230 miles from Impfondo. The people of Impfondo would like to construct their own church building and have taken the initiative to obtain a large piece of land on which they can build. They have the expertise to construct a simple church building. Having a building in which to worship is necessary in a tropical climate where there is much rainfall. This project would enable the congregation of the EDCC Impfondo parish to have a place of worship regardless of the weather.
The EDCC Impfondo Parish would like to construct a simple church building using compressed-earth bricks stabilized with a small amount of cement for the walls and foundation. They would roof the building with metal roofing sheets available in Impfondo or shipped from Brazzaville. The acquisition and use of the brick presses has several advantages. Purchasing the brick presses would be useful since some of these presses could eventually be sent to other locations, such as Loukolela, to help in the construction of additional church buildings. If some of the presses were left in Impfondo, after the construction of the church building, they could then be used to begin a brick making business that would then bring some revenue to the Impfondo parish. This project could be the initial phase of both church construction for the EDCC and the beginning of a means for obtaining local revenue for the EDCC.
The cost of the building supplies, not including the land which has already been purchased, comes to $25,000. This gift would be an investment in the Impfondo parish, their community, and other EDCC parishes in the RC.