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29.07.2020

"Care & Share" puts a smile on their faces

Covid-19: Due to loss of income, the UEM member churches in Africa and Asia have not been able to pay their employees a full salary for several months. The employees still come to work, for example to distribute urgently needed food, as here in a UCCP church office in Luzon, Philippines. (Photo: Solis-Aguilar)

Packed food parcels in a GKE church office in Kalimantan, Indonesia, are waiting to be distributed. (Photo: GKE)

To date, the UEM head office in Wuppertal has received numerous responses from African and Asian member churches to the "Care and Share" fundraising campaign. Under this motto, the employees of UEM member churches in Germany donated 250,000 euros within one month to finance part of the salaries of colleagues from the 32 member churches in Africa and Asia that have been outstanding for many months. Below we publish some exemplary reactions of church leaders to the announcement of the emergency aid by the General Secretary of UEM, Volker Martin Dally.

Exemplary feedback from UEM churches in the Africa region

Pastor Dr Pascal Bataringaya, President of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Rwanda, writes: "Thank you for your message and for the letter from the General Secretary of UEM, Pastor Volker Dally, about the provision of additional funds for our church to cope with the effects of COVID-19. We accept this with thanks and gratitude. Please express our gratitude to the General Secretary of UEM, the Corona Task Force and all sisters and brothers who together have contributed to this solidarity action in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. We include you all in our prayers - may the Lord continue to protect and bless you."

Pastor Dr. Abednego Keshomshahara, Bishop of the North-West Diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania, answers: "Dear General Secretary of UEM, I send you our greetings from Bukoba. We hope that you are well. We are also well, despite the fight against the corona virus. We are grateful for the additional salary support for the employees affected by Covid-19. We will determine the group of beneficiaries as you suggest."

Pastor Dr Samuel Ngayihembako Mutahinga, Church President of the Baptist Church in Central Africa (CBCA) in the Democratic Republic of Congo, stated: "On behalf of the CBCA and the pastors of the church districts as well as the staff of the main administration, I would like to express my sincere thanks for your generous support of 7,500 euros; this is one of many donations we have received from UEM. Our thanks and gratitude also go to the Church of the Rhineland and the Church of Westphalia, who have initiated the solidarity action "Care and Share".

In these difficult times of COVID-19 we are no longer able to pay the full monthly salaries of the pastors in the church districts and the staff in the head office, which are fed by only one source of funding, namely the ordinary donations of the parishioners. Your donation will help us to mitigate the worsening situation in July this year, as the decline in income has become painfully worse since March. Thank you very much for supporting the work of our pastors and the staff of the CBCA administration. With your donation we can put a smile on their faces. Together with the treasurer and his team, we will send you a reference list of the funds distributed. With best regards."

Exemplary feedback from UEM churches in the Asia region

Reverend Asiri Perera, President of the Methodist Church in Sri Lanka writes to us: "We greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ! On behalf of the Methodist Church in Sri Lanka, I write to all of you in UEM, EKiR and EKvW to thank you for the very generous financial support of my colleagues in MC-SL. Your support reached us at a time when we were praying for God's providence for the scholarships of our church workers. Please convey our sincere thanks to all who donated these funds as a gesture of love and fellowship in God's family. The financial department of MC-SL will provide you with the necessary reports and receipts for the transferred funds. I assure you that we will include you all in our prayers as you continue to carry out God's purposes in these difficult times of COVID-19. I thank you. God be with you."

From the chairman of the GKJTU Synod Council from Java (Indonesia), Rev. Abednego Juwarisman, we received the following message: "Best wishes from the GKJTU. One of the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic for us is the decrease in collections from our communities. This means that the contributions and gifts of local congregations to the Synod have also decreased. As a result, the independent enterprise of the synod (renting the Sabda Mulya building and the LPPL building) could not be reopened from February 2020 until today. This has led to a dramatic loss of income for the GKJTU Synod. This is because renting the buildings is the main source of income for financing the salaries of the pastors and the synod staff. We have a deficit of more than 65%.

Praise the Lord! During this time we are very happy about the help of UEM and the solidarity action "Care & Share", which was initiated by the Rhenish Church (EKiR) and the Westphalian Church (EKvW). In the name of the synod executive committee of the GKJTU we are very grateful to the EKiR and the EKvW. We also express our sincere thanks to UEM! May our Lord Jesus bless you all and pour out His infinite grace upon you all."

Pastor Oloan Pasaribu, Bishop of the Christian Church (GKPI) in North Sumatra (Indonesia) writes to us: "Greetings from the GKPI, We would like to thank Pastor Volker Martin Dally, General Secretary of UEM, for his letter and especially for the information about "Care & Share - solidarity action to fight back Covid-19". We are very happy about the care and donations of the pastors and staff from the EKiR and the EKvW in Germany. We would like to express our sincere thanks for your solidarity! May God bless our partnership with Asia, Africa and Germany forever!

Further donations can be transferred to the donations account of the United Evangelical Mission (UEM).

IBAN: DE45 3506 0190 0009 0909 08 BIC: GENODED1DKD Keyword: "Care and Share

Online donation is possible here.

Martina Pauly (Team Communication & Media)

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