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Standing in the gap

This week we will be spotlighting a few of our ROWAN members in need of sponsorship.  Today we are shining the light on Katherine Nabirye and Badiri Mukose – two of ROWAN’s incredible caregivers.  The caregivers that ROWAN serves genuinely understand the scriptural passage found in Matthew 25:40, which teaches, “And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” 

A smiling woman in a colorful dress standing in a field in Uganda 

Katherine Nabirye is a woman who knows the meaning of christ-like service.  She takes in orphans and lovingly raises them until they are old enough to be independent. She serves those in her community selflessly and without hesitation. Katherine is love in action, and she has touched the hearts of many in the ROWAN family.

A smiling man in a blue shirt standing under a tree in Uganda

While raising his ten children, Badiri Mukose has also taken in his nieces and nephews, who lost both of their parents to HIV/AIDS. Badiri is a peasant farmer by trade with a full house and a full plate, but he doesn’t allow the stresses of daily life to stop him from being there for those who need him. He is a man with a huge heart who shows, by example, the power of choosing love.

A man in a blue shirt standing in the shade in Uganda    

A closeup of a smiling woman in a colorful dress in Uganda

We would love to see both Katherine and Badiri get fully sponsored this week! Will you help us meet that goal?  Together, we can show Katherine and Badiri that they are not alone on their journey as caregivers. 

If you are interested in sponsoring Katherine or Badiri, please click here to be taken to ROWAN’s sponsorship page or click on either of their names anywhere in this post to be taken directly to their individual sponsorship pages. Thank you for standing with us in the gap!

 

Post Author: Kirsten Formea

Get ready for Fall with our new merchandise

White mug with the words, "Hope does not disappoint" written on it in scrabble pieces

“And all at once, summer collapsed into fall.” – Oscar Wilde

Happy first day of  Autumn!  Crisp mornings, colorful leaves, and pumpkins on porches – all sure signs that Fall has arrived.  What better way to celebrate the arrival of a new season than by making a purchase that helps lift someone else?  The new ROWAN merchandise gives you a chance to do just that.  All proceeds from our Fall merchandise go to feeding our ROWAN families during the continuing COVID-19 lockdown in Uganda.  

                   

 

To see all of the merchandise available or to make a purchase, click the link below:

https://www.bonfire.com/store/rowan-store/

If you are interested in learning more about the situation in Uganda, click here.  Please continue to pray for the people of Uganda and our ROWAN families, and if you can, please consider purchasing a shirt or a mug to help keep food on the tables of our Ugandan families.  

 

Post Author: Kirsten Formea

“Gratitude is our foundation.”

A learning center in Uganda

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” – Proverbs 3: 5-6

A young child in Uganda

Recently pastor Paul said, “The world is in total confusion, but Uganda is confused more.”  Like so many places in the world right now, there is a lot of uncertainty in Uganda right now.  People are not sure where to turn or what to do.  Children long to be back in school and their caregivers don’t have any clear answers as to when that will happen.  The Ugandan government is saying that schools are reopening and is now demanding school fees be paid in order for children to return to in-person learning, but there is a general feeling of mistrust surrounding this.  Ugandans are worried that they will pay these fees and then schools will close once again.  For many these fees take up a large amount of their income, ROWAN would have to pay $6,000 (USD) in fees to have all of its children return to school right now. 

Pastor Paul is meeting with ROWAN staff to brainstorm ways in which the Learning Center can be used for help in continuing the education of ROWAN’s children.  You may remember that thanks to last year’s Christmas campaign, we were able to purchase an educational curriculum and now have a staff of 4 teachers in our Learning Center.  So, thanks to the generosity of so many of you, our ROWAN children will have access to education during this time of uncertainty.

A desk with chairs in a classroom in Uganda

As Pastor Paul says, “Gratitude is our foundation.  COVID has pushed ROWAN outside of its walls, outside of its programs.  What does ROWAN look like when we are outside our walls?  We rely on God’s daily bread for our direction, inspiration, and provision.  Our courage is expressed in surrender.”

A young boy smiling in Uganda

 

We at ROWAN have so much to be grateful for – even in these uncertain times.  We have not had a single member of the Ugandan ROWAN community test positive for COVID.  We have supporters whose generosity and kindness have allowed us to meet the needs of our members throughout this pandemic.  We have been on the receiving end of miracles and had so many answered prayers during this season of hardship.  And we have seen the power of love in action.  God is great.  Prayers are heard.  Hope is real.

A little girl smiling in Uganda

All photos by Bob Ditty

Post Author: Kirsten Formea

When things are hard, PRAY.

30 days of prayer prompts introduction

“Every great movement of God can be traced to a kneeling figure.”

– D.L. Moody

With the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to spread, people worldwide facing floods, famines, and political unrest, the world can feel very heavy.  But we at ROWAN think there is also a tremendous amount of good in the world, and we are choosing to look for and see hope.  We believe now is the time to gather together and to pray.  To this end, we put together a prayer prompt campaign for September.  Each day this month, we will be sharing a scripture and prayer prompt, and we would love to have you join us in prayer.

Prayer Prompt for forgiveness                  Prayer Prompt for Courage

We have seen the power of prayer in action, and it is a beautiful sight to behold.  Just this week, ROWAN’s co-founder, Kelsey, had a powerful experience with prayer.  During a conversation with Pastor Paul, he shared a need for funds for tires, land titles, and other backend costs for the ROWAN land in Uganda.  These needs totaled up to $2000 (USD).  These items weren’t in the budget, but they were necessary, so Kelsey sent the money to cover them, and then she prayed.  In relating this experience, Kelsey said, “I remember praying out loud and saying, ‘Lord, I just trust you, and I pray that you somehow bring this money in today’.” and then she went about her day.  While running errands, Kelsey ran into a woman she hadn’t seen in a while.  As they were talking, this woman asked Kelsey about ROWAN, and after hearing about some of the struggles our Ugandan members were facing, she said, “I’ll just cut you a check right now.”  This kind and generous woman then wrote a check to ROWAN for the exact amount needed to cover the expenses Kelsey had prayed about that morning.  

What an incredible example of the power of prayer and of the way God provides exactly what is needed!  

Courage Prayer Prompt

We would love to have you join us this month as we pray.  Our prayer prompts are shared daily on ROWAN’s social media stories or, if you prefer to see a week’s worth at a time, we share them weekly via a post on our social media accounts.  We are grateful for all of those who pray with us and know, as Mark Batterson says, “Prayer is the difference between the best we can do and the best God can do.”

Post Author: Kirsten Formea

Food is Life!

 

While the pandemic has brought hardship and struggle to the world, some of us have fared better than others. Many of us have been able to shop online for food and other things, with front door deliveries. We have made use of curbside pickup and Instacart shoppers. And most of us have been able to shop inside grocery and other stores as needed. I am grateful to God for the relative ease of feeding my family during such a hard time.

 

Our friends in Uganda are facing something wholly different. Due to rising cases of Covid-19 in country, Uganda began a 42 day lockdown on June 19. People may not leave their homes unless for medical emergencies. This has put people in the ROWAN villages in a dangerous situation as they have no way to get food to sustain themselves for this long period. ROWAN asked for your help and you came through! Last week, Paster Paul and our ROWAN team (under the watchful eye of Security officers) were able to distribute food to our widows and orphans. 

Maize and beans made ready for distribution outside at Mwanga Hall of Hope.
Pastor Paul and Isaac Malinga, ROWAN Board Chair, witness the food distribution process along with police officers.

Without the generosity of donors this would not have been possible. And we’re not done yet! To sustain each person through the lockdown we need to purchase and deliver more food. Please consider giving, anything you can, to our Food to Families campaign, and help us be the hands and feet of Jesus Christ to our faithful widows and orphans in the villages who need to eat. All of the money raised from this campaign is going toward the purchase of food supplies during the COVID-19 lockdown.

 

Their faces! Happy beneficiaries of food send thanks and God’s blessing to donors and sponsors.

Pastor Paul just sent this message:

 

“Good evening to you all,

Thank you for your prayers, we made it.  Everyone was excited with the food given to them—God Bless you all abundantly.

 

You may wonder why we didn’t use the Bus.  The first point was that the Kilos were too many for the Bus, secondly the roads are too bad for the Bus when packed with food, thirdly the police we had didn’t allow us because when you carry people in a Bus it can easily spread the virus, so that is why we had to use the truck.

 

But the most important thing we thank God is that we were allowed to buy food and we were able to distribute it to them.

 

Thank you so much for your help.

Talk to you soon.”

 

Pastor Paul Nyende

 

Being hungry and not being fed takes a toll on the mind, body, and spirit. Thank you for continuing to help us alleviate this most basic need for our Ugandan brothers and sisters in Christ. He is the bread of life and we give Him thanks! 

Post Author: Shelly Casale

Tightened lockdown and miracles

A man happily driving a bus in Uganda

On Friday, June 18th, President Yoweri Museveni announced that Uganda would be going into a new 42-day full lockdown.  During this new lockdown, vehicular travel of any kind is prohibited.  Only essential workers or those in need of medical care are exempted from this travel ban.  In addition to all the closures announced in the earlier lockdown, President Museveni set a new 7:00 p.m. curfew for all Ugandans and mandated that all shops must now close. 

These new restrictions coupled with rising COVID-19 infections only add to the increasing hardships the people in Uganda are currently facing.  ROWAN is committed to doing all we can to ensure that our widows and orphans have the food they need during this lockdown.  Our Ugandan team is currently working to procure the needed food supplies and distribute them to our ROWAN communities.  This has been no easy task however as police have been stationed on every corner of the villages to prevent people from leaving their homes.  

Pastor Paul refused to be deterred though.  He said, “I will not give up, tomorrow I will try another person.  Pray with me.  I cannot sit back and watch my people suffer.”  ROWAN posted Pastor Paul’s plea for prayer on our social media accounts and we know that many of you joined us in prayer for our Ugandan family.  How do we know this?  We know because we had a miracle occur.  Yesterday afternoon we received this message from Pastor Paul, ” This is so, so, so good.  Our God is so exciting.  He is so good.  He answers our prayers.  Do you know what? The man I talked to, he has been able to order the district officials who are in charge of the lockdown operations to allow me to buy the food and distribute it to the people.”   What a tremendous blessing!  Thank you for the prayers you sent for softened hearts and help for Pastor Paul.  

Please keep praying for our ROWAN family and for all Ugandans.  If you can, please consider making a donation to our Food to Families campaign.  All proceeds from this campaign go directly toward the purchase of much-need food supplies for our widows and orphans.  We are so grateful for each of you who stands with ROWAN in prayer, support, and love.  

Post Author: Kirsten Formea

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