In just a few short weeks, we will be welcoming guests from our companion synod, the Ulanga Kilombero Diocese of Tanzania. Pastor Moses and Pastor Eliud will be in our synod for several weeks--and we are so excited to welcome our friend Moses back among us, and make a new friend of Pastor Eliud!
Visitors from Tanzania always open our hearts to want to help them in many ways. I want to caution you about the type of help that you offer, as what seems like a very helpful item in the United States may actually not be the blessing we intend it to be. For example, a costly x-ray machine donated by Americans to a hospital in Africa broke. The parts to fix it are not available in Africa, and are cost-prohibitive to ship from America. Even if they COULD get the parts: there isn't a tech who can work on it. This incredibly generous, well-meant gift now sits, useless. Even something as simple as a well carries some delicate negotiations--who controls the well? Who has access to it? How is it accessed?
These are all things that our Global Mission Team is well-positioned to address, so if as you are visiting with Moses and Eliud a need is discovered, please contact our Global Mission Team (the synod office can direct you if you don't know how to reach them) so we can work with our friends and partners to get the need addressed in a way that is truly helpful, rather than a missed opportunity. Thanks for cooperating with us on this--we all want to help as much as we can, and this system will make sure that our help actually does help! :)
HOWEVER, there is one need that we CAN fulfill! It turns out that the plastic tab collars for clergy shirts are in short supply and hard to come by in the UKD. Most pastors have several of these little guys lying around in cupholders, on dressers, in desk drawers, on dashboards, etc. If you can get your hands on one or two tab collars (not the full-neck "dog" collars some clergy wear) and bring them to Synod Assembly or a cluster meeting: we can help meet a simple, but very real need our friends are experiencing.