What these for so many people?

That was the question from Andrew to Jesus in John 6:9. He was asking about the five loaves and two fish as they faced five thousand hungry people.  In a wonderfully simple manner, Jesus multiplied that small contribution to care for the great need.  We are asking Him to do the same thing now with Bibles for Christians in Uganda. 

I have made three trips to the Masaka region in eastern Uganda. Our work has been based in a village called Kabaale.  The teams I have travelled with have conducted evangelism, medical clinics, children’s ministries, building a school, drilling a well, visiting homes, prisons and schools.  The part of this work that is dearest to my heart includes distribution of Bibles, training of Pastors and Bible teaching ministries.

God has allowed us to come alongside Pastors in remote villages to help them form a “Pastor’s Alliance”. There are currently 32 Pastors in this Alliance who work together to establish healthy churches in each village. During the last trip (November of 2010), we were asked by Pastors in a nearby area to help them do the same. This Alliance is designed to assure doctrinal integrity, sharing of resources and personal accountability.  There are about 20 Pastors in this second group. While there are some exceptions, the typical Pastor in these churches has no formal theological training and very little church experience. When we first met them, very few owned a complete Bible and most did not have any at all. The Bibles we did see were held together with string or ribbon. The very best church building are those made of brick with cement floor and no windows. They are all single room buildings and about half of them have no chairs or benches.

I expect to make another trip this year (maybe even two). They have asked me to come somewhere between May and August but I am not sure what I will be able to do yet.  They want to be taught the Scriptures so they can teach the churches. We are working on a plan for an intensive few days of serious study together. When I do go, I hope to be able to purchase more Bibles for distribution. During my last visit, I was approached by groups of people who were willing to share a Bible among them if I could get a single copy for them.  We can buy Bibles in Luganda (native language) for about $9-10 or New Testaments (w/ Psalms & Proverbs) for about $4. With over 50 village churches, one can easily imagine the extent of the need.  By the generosity of friends from Washington to Maine, we have been able to place Bibles with each of the Pastors. But like Andrew, I am tempted to ask, “what are these among so many people?”

Will you help? If we each give what we can and trust God to multiply the number of churches and people willing to do the same, we can provide the Word of God to thousands of Christians who are hungry for that Word and have no other means for obtaining Bibles. The cost of a Luganda Bible is small to us, but represents a minimum of several months’ wages for those people fortunate enough to have any income at all. The Bibles are distributed free of charge through the village churches to Christians who are committed to reading and sharing as they learn.  If there are ever “extra” Bibles, they will used for evangelism.  

Every dollar given will go directly and completely for that purpose.  My travel expenses are paid for by the generosity of Emmanuel Bible Baptist Church with the help of some friends and family members .  We pay for transportation and distribution of the Bibles. 

Thank you for prayerfully considering this.

God bless.

Copyright 2011 Bibles for Uganda