Jon & Dawn Barnes – South Africa

How beautiful are the feet of those who bring the good news!!

The Kei Region of South Africa has truly received good news from Park Place Christian Church in Hutchinson, Kansas!! And in return, much good news will be shared to the people and communities throughout this area.

“How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” Romans 10:14-15

The Kei Region received 15 bicycles that were donated from Park Place Christian. Three churches each received 5 bicycles. The communities of Balfour, Bedford and Knapp’s Hope now have transportation for their members to go to places of employment, for the children to go school and for the church members to share the good news of Christ.
How beautiful are the feet of those who ride the bicycles!!

As I look from the window, today is a rainy, cold winter day. And I know that there is a deacon in the Knapp’s Hope church who is on his bicycle visiting sick members of the church. And in the community of Bedford a farm worker was able to get to work today without paying taxi fare or walking the long kilometers. And I also know that a child in the Balfour community got to school a little easier and a bit faster on the muddy, dirt road today. Indeed are those feet beautifully blessed!

On delivery of the bicycles to the Knapp’s Hope community, the pastor and one of the deacons adjusted the seats of two and they were off on the dirt road to visit the home of a family who had lost a loved one. In Bedford, five of the deacons got on the bicycles and rode them all over town telling about their wonderful gifts and everyone in town came to check out what was happening at the church. And in Balfour, an old man of 84 gave his heartfelt thanks for such a wonderful gift with tears in his eyes saying that in all of his life, he has never seen the church receive such a blessing. Thanks be to God for bringing these churches together!

We, in the USA, often do not realize what a simple gift of a bicycle can do to help a person in Africa. It can make one’s life here easier in so many ways, but it can also give a person self-esteem and worth that someone across the ocean cares for them and wants to bless them. Just as the Africans have been so graciously blessed from those in Kansas, so may the good news of Christ be carried out into the villages of South Africa by the beautiful feet of those who love and serve our God!

Rev. Dawn Barnes
Jonathan and Dawn Barnes are missionaries with the Kei Regional Council of the United Congregational Church of Southern Africa, South Africa. Jonathan serves in pastoral ministries among the churches in the region. Dawn serves in pastoral ministries and social work.