Jospin journeyed from wanting vengeance to being a peacemaker and schoolteacher. Photo: CMS Library image
Jospin was hardly in his teens when every member of his immediate family was brutally murdered. Unsurprisingly he joined the rebel faction to kill in revenge.
But there is a surprise – Jospin is now committed to building peace, thanks to the work of Timothy mission partner the Rev Bisoke Balikenga.
Bisoke has gained the trust of those who took up arms during a bloody inter-tribal war in Eastern DR Congo.
The notorious conflict saw villages torched, women raped and families slaughtered.
Thousands of people were driven from their homes and thousands killed. With half of all who joined the fight under the age of 18 – some as young as eight years old.
But now peace is returning to hearts and lives as well as villages. And the peacemaking role of Bisoke and his team is key.
Jospin was hardly in his teens when every member of his immediate family was brutally murdered during the conflict. But not before his sister had been raped before his eyes. His response was to join the rebel army and to kill in revenge.
With the conflict over, for some seemingly unaccountable reason, Jospin went to one of Bisoke’s peace and reconciliation workshops. There he made a commitment to stop living in the bush and start building peace rather than war.
To have returned to his comrades with that kind of revolution in mind would have cost Jospin his life. So Bisoke’s team found him a place to stay, food to eat, money to get him back into school – and shared the good news of Jesus with him.
Today, Jospin is a follower of Jesus, sings in the church choir and is a primary school teacher. It is wonderful what gifts to the Timothy Fund can bring about.
Last year Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, went to see such transformed lives
Some told how their whole family had been taken away, along with everything they had owned. But God is helping them daily.
Bisoke is a true 'Timothy'. For years he has been faithful as the youth and children's coordinator for Congo's Anglican Church. Eventually, he and his wife received CMS study scholarships – with Bisoke now qualified in business administration and management, and peace and reconciliation.
And it is not just through the peace workshops that lives are changing. The wide-reaching programme with youth also includes –
- teaching skills – from agriculture to crafts – so they can start projects and co-operatives in their villages
- supporting many who were raped, lost all their property or received no education
- providing literacy education and Bible teaching
And at the heart of it is Timothy mission partner Bisoke.
Such heart-lifting stories are being multiplied around the globe. But this can only keep happening if we are able to replenish the Timothy Fund.
Can you help us raise over £97,000 during the coming months – because that is what is needed.
It may help you to know it only costs about £47 a week
to cover the living costs of a Timothy mission partner like Bhibin or Bisoke.
Please consider making a donation right now.
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