Well, we are in the thick of the hot and humid season here in Mozambique. November has been an eventful month for us and our church partners in Beira. We have celebrated the National Synod of the United Church of Christ in Mozambique (UCCM) during which our friend, Pastor Lucas, was re-elected to serve another four years as denominational president. We returned to Goi-Goi to plant maize and beans in the training field and check on the progress of the new house. Interest continues to grow for the conservation agriculture training, which is very exciting. All things considered, we have much to be thankful for this year.
Unlike our stateside churches, the national synod is a yearly event in the UCCM. It takes place over three days, culminating in a worship celebration on Sunday morning during which the hard work of the church and its leaders is recognized. This year was particularly eventful since it was an election year for the denomination’s president. The only hiccup in the vote happened when the power went out for a few hours and rather than vote in the dark, we waited for power to return. Thankfully, it did and the church was able to re-elect Rev. Lucas Amosse to another 4-year term. The UCCM is lucky to have such a dedicated and capable leader for another term. We were also able to share some of the accomplishments made on the Goi-Goi farm. Being able to show pictures and tell stories of that work is increasing interest in farming training in other congregations as well.
The Munhava congregation in Beira is one of those churches that has expressed more interest in the conservation agriculture (CA) training and invited us this month to host a seminar and help start a CA garden on their church property. The teaching went well and the garden was cleared and planted with lots of help from many church members. While some people seemed disappointed that there weren’t more participants we were happy to remind them that one of the foundational ideas behind the Foundations for Farming program is to start small and keep your standards high. When you can have success in this manner, growth and increased interest is much easier to achieve. This is our hope for the Goi-Goi training field as well.
While the rains have been late in coming again this year, we decided to visit Goi-Goi and plant the training field before leaving for vacation. November 25th is a key deadline for planting in this part of the world as well and we wanted to get our seeds in the ground before that date to ensure the best chances for a good harvest. Since there wasn’t sufficient rain yet, we hauled about 500 liters of water by hand from the well to get things started. It was a lot of work in really hot weather, but it will hopefully pay off come harvest time. Thankfully, about a week after returning to Beira, our friend texted us that they were getting rain in the Goi-Goi area. We will continue to pray for rain and healthy crops for the farmers of Mozambique and encourage you to join us.
God bless you for your continued prayers and support of our partners in Mozambique and our appointment here. We will be on vacation during December so we also wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Kim and Erik Free serve with the United Church of Christ in Mozambique. Their appointment is made possible by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund, Our Churches Wider Mission, and your special gifts.