Update from Gulu by Charlie King
We have arrived in Gulu, and setting up to conduct a week’s worth of training at Grace Church at Aworang, just outside of Gulu.
While visiting this afternoon, after church, James got this picture of the Aworang Women’s Savings Coop. At the Church the women began a savings program to boost their income and provide for microloans. It’s working—all the women are saving 1000UGX a week (about $3) and those who want a loan may take one out and pay it back in 3 months with an interest of 10%. At the end of the year, they have an accounting and a member can pull out with interest or start over again. They keep the cash in a box you can see in the middle of the picture. The box is kept in the pastor’s house—but they keep the key!
These women are also organizing to provide the food for the week’s classes. We are expecting about 200 people with half remaining overnight in the adjacent school. If the men were half as organized as the women, this would be a different place.
I once commented along these lines to one of the leaders of the women’s group. I’ll never forget what she said. “Yes,” she said, “I know that. But if we did run everything the men would have no excuse.” She understood that the leadership that men are given in certain respects by God is not because they are superior, or even particularly worthy of such leadership. It is simply God’s design; it is a weight to be carried by men. Too many men here, and for that matter back home, shirk their responsibilities and deny their calling. We should not be let off the hook.
There are some additional picture here of church this morning – I visited Pece Presbyterian in Gulu town, and James visited a church plant that has been meeting for about two years under a tree. They call themselves The Church Under the Tree! The first photo is of the church two years ago – the second is from James as he attended today. This is how the Kingdom is built.
Cheers and blessings,