by Joy Casey
Lighthouse, a Missionary Alliance church in the Tacoma area, has adopted a Muslim village in Ethiopia. People in their church sponsor kindergarten students and vulnerable families, and the church significantly impacts evangelism outreach and Bible training for the area.
Recently, they dedicated the proceeds of a coin drive held in their church to build new houses for some of the families and to provide oxen, the Ethiopian equivalent of a John Deere, so the poor can cultivate their land. The children’s department got into the act and raised $1,500! One little girl collected $75 from a lemonade stand. An enterprising boy did chores for neighbors and proudly donated his hard-earned proceeds to help others. In total, the church generously presented Mission 1:27 with a check for $15,223.46! We were astounded and very, very grateful.
New house construction is $1,000 and a pair of oxen, yoke and a shed is $750. $15,000 will help many. The traditional stick and mud houses with dirt floors and thatched roof don’t last forever, and the overall housing of the families being supported is deplorable. We recently have replaced five houses through donations through our gift catalog and there are many more who need help.
Without oxen to plow, land cannot be planted. This village is entirely dependent on agriculture and without crops of maize and teff (Ethiopian wheat), food is scarce and there is nothing to barter with. Oxen will give families hope for a better life! After plowing the owner’s land, the oxen will then be hired out to others bringing in extra income. The value of these animals cannot be over- estimated.
Thank you, LIGHTHOUSE CHURCH, for your practical and thoughtful gift to the people your church adopted. The many individuals who gave will never be personally thanked, but our Father in heaven knows and their reward will be from Him (Matthew 6:4).