The last two Sundays we have been considering God's counsel, from the pages of the Book of James, regarding how we interacting with others... specifically orphans, widows and those who are often discriminated against. James calls upon us to "visit" them in their "affliction"... meaning to help them in the affliction of their situation in life. It has been heavy, but it has been good.
During both of these Sundays we have heard from Christ's Hope, a ministry to the AIDS affected orphans in Africa, about a very specific way that we can get involved in reflecting God's heart towards orphans. We have partnered with Christ's Hope to sponsor 29 children (at $38/month) in the Manzanza Ministry CarePoint in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In just 2 weeks, Sojourn has already sponsored 25 of those children! That is awesome!!! We are definitely excited about this partnership and eager to see what God will do through it in the years to come.
Maybe you are asking: what is a Ministry CarePoint? Well, I am glad you asked...
What is a Ministry CarePoint?
"A Ministry CarePoint is Christ's Hope International's primary point of care and ministry to the AIDS affected child. This is the central point where communities come together to assist children. Through these CarePoints, Christ's Hope International provides the tools, training and assistance needed, to ensure that vulnerable children have the ability to live with extended or foster families rather than being institutionalized in an orphanage.
CarePoints are strategically located in areas with a high HIV infection rates and where AIDS has destroyed many families. To date, the devastation has left over 15 million children orphaned by the pandemic.
In Africa, orphans are often stigmatized and marginalized by society and their communities which is why Christ's Hope International's CarePoints have been established as safe-haven where orphans experience, perhaps for the first time, the truth that they have dignity and value, because they are children of a loving God."
Maybe you are asking: who is Christ's Hope? You can check out their website (www.christshope.org) or reach out to their USA office (877.544.0914) which is located right here in Traverse City! In the meantime, here is a little snippet about their ministry model:
Caring for AIDS Affected Children
"We believe in, and are committed to, a holistic approach to caring for AIDS affected orphaned and vulnerable children by addressing their spiritual, physical, emotional and social needs. Family preservation is a biblical and critical focus in our ministry model by helping these children live with extended and foster families in their own communities where they are often pushed into institutions or out on the streets. We believe that it is not enough (however important) to provide the immediate needs of a child if we are not also building and encouraging strong, healthy, and nurturing communities in which the child can develop.
After years of dedicating time and treasure to ministering and aiding countless people in Sub-Saharan Africa we have learned that the needs of AIDS affected children is the central point from which we deploy the aid and critical assistance for these communities. We call these our Ministry CarePoints, and we are seeing the positive and lasting effects of this inovative, biblically intentional, approach to caring for AIDS affected children and their communities."
Thanks to all who sponsored but remember: this is the start of a relationship! We want to encourage the sponsors and ALL of our Sojourn Church family to regularly pray for the Manzanza Ministry CarePoint orphans and staff.