With help and encouragement from Resonate Global Mission, one Christian has changed life for everyone in her village.
The tiny fishing village of Lwajabwa is nestled on the coast of Lake Victoria in Uganda. At the mouth of a sheltered bay, fisherman cast their nets from long, narrow boats and haul back their catch to dry in the sunshine. Surrounded by blue sky and blue water, it can be hard to believe Lwajabwa is suffering. But despite their idyllic location, the people of Lwajabwa are cut off from vital resources like education, transportation, and clean water.
Lwajabwa resident Teopista saw how the lack of clean water hurt her village. As she walked among the village’s mud huts, she saw people suffering.
Diseases like alcoholism and HIV rage largely unchecked here. And limited access to resources leave her village especially vulnerable to diseases like cholera and dysentery. Most of the fisherman are illiterate, and many children don’t go to school; they simply learn the fishing trade. And they need to know Jesus Christ. Teopista saw that clean water could be a catalyst to change all of that.
Developing Gifts as a Leader
As assistant pastor at Apostolic Church, the tiny church in Lwajabwa, Teopista was invited to take part in Timothy Leadership Training (TLT), a ministry of Raise Up Global Ministries, in partnership with Resonate. Resonate missionary Diana Boot and pastor Ivan Wanda work to offer leadership training throughout the area and love to see how equipping people like Teopista can start a wave of change.
Teopista lived more than 10km (6 miles) away from the TLT trainings, but she didn’t let that stop her. She arranged rides when she could, but when she had to, she walked the entire distance down the rough and narrow roads that link Lwajabwa’s little peninsula to the surrounding area. And after completing the first part of the training, she knew what God was calling her to do.
“I got an idea,” said Teopista. After learning about God’s call to care for her community and receiving encouragement and guidance at the training, she put her gifts into action. “I went to local leaders and engaged them to help the community have safe water.”
Organizing for Change
Teopista orchestrated a partnership between the church, the local governing council, and Uganda’s national water and sewer authorities. They heard her idea and agreed to bring safe water to Lwajabwa.
Teopista’s plan called for a deep well called a borehole, and her church donated the land where it was drilled and agreed to take care of it.
On the day of the drilling, a large truck came slowly and gingerly down the neglected road to Lwajabwa. They sank a pipe 64 feet (20m) deep into the ground, drilling until they found water that was clean and clear. They poured a small concrete slab and installed a hand pump on top, which the villagers painted bright blue.
The people were delighted to have clean water and celebrated the borehole’s grand opening. Local politicians made the journey to join in the celebration. And as life changed for the villagers, they realized how much Teopista and her church cared about them.
Leading Neighbors to Christ
At first, Teopista’s neighbors were puzzled, wondering why a church would want to provide them with water. But as more people became curious, connected with church, and learned about the love of Jesus, the little church began to grow!
Now, Teopista hopes that the church will continue to grow as people see how Christians care for their community. The church is expanding its ministry and developing new ways to meet Lwajabwa’s other needs, as well. The Word of God is making a difference in Lwajabwa, and Teopista looks forward to continuing to spread that joy.
Thanks to supporters like you, Resonate trains leaders like Teopista all over the world. God has equipped his people with gifts - and you are helping to propel them into action! Thank you for believing in leaders like Teopista and starting waves of change that ultimately lead people to Christ.