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Providence and Deo

Providence died in 2012, but will be giving birth this coming Monday…

Say that again?

On 13th September 2012, Provi plunged over a cliff at Butomangwa with her three RTNB colleagues (Burundi’s national Radio/TV) after a day’s news-reporting on a UNICEF project. All four were declared dead on the spot. Their bodies were taken to the morgue at Rutana hospital. The accident made national news headlines, and the Minister of Information announced on air each of the names of the dead, including hers.

The first three bodies filled up the morgue, so Provi’s corpse was laid outside on the ground in the sun. In the meantime, a lady called Cecile was praying, and she had a vision in which she saw a woman still alive at the hospital who needed rescuing. She made her way there and, although she’d never met Provi before in her life, she recognised her face immediately from the vision. The trunk of the corpse was so mangled and broken that Cecile struggled to follow through with what she felt God had told her. She summoned the nurse, who confirmed to her that Provi was indeed dead.

“No, she’s not dead, God has told me she’s not dead!”

Sure enough, on closer re-inspection, there was the faintest glimmer of life. Cecile’s husband Fulgence worked (and still works) for World Vision. They are an influential and respected Pentecostal family and they managed to get permission from the Governor to take the body home. There they had doctors attend to her whilst they prayed in the next room. After a while, she regained consciousness.

After an ambulance ride to the capital, she was seen by a top doctor at the Polyclinique. He examined her, and said: “You’ve had so much internal bleeding, yet your vital organs are somehow still relatively undamaged and functioning. I just can’t believe you’re still alive… are you a Christian? Do you pray?” She was able to share her faith and story with him.

Beautiful! And that was over eight years ago.

Back to the present day, due to the injuries sustained in that accident, she can’t give birth naturally. So instead, it will be by C-section this Monday at 830am (UK time).

It’s just a great story! We’ve supported her husband Deo for many years, whose own story is also pretty wild.

Through GLO, we’ve had the privilege of knowing and supporting many outstanding leaders of high integrity. And because of this, we hear countless mind-boggling testimonies like the above that challenge our (lack of) faith and inspire us to trust in Him who “does marvellous deeds”.

So we share these stories to encourage and inspire you, all the more during these challenging days.

Keep the faith!

Simon

PS If you’re looking at ways to help us, could you share GLO with your friends? Do you want to join in the Choose Life read? Could you consider a regular small donation? Or join us for our inspiring weekly prayer Zooms when we actually hear from the likes of Deo?

PPS If you need a ‘remote’ speaker for your church’s Sunday service, or a youth group – whatever context, I’d love to join you to stir the troops and bring a word of encouragement. Do get in touch!

GLOMore than Conquerors

And he did graduate with distinction! And he found a lovely woman to marry! And he’s now a Dad!

Freddy on his wedding day and his newborn child.

* I just came across this and realised we hadn’t posted it, having filmed it a couple of years ago. Still worth seeing! He’s still trying to set up a pharmacy, but maintaining his integrity in the process is challenging, so do pray for wisdom and breakthroughs there.

More than ConquerorsVideos

At the height of the crisis in the 1990s, when he was a student at university, someone threw a grenade into Leonidas’ dormitory. Nobody was killed on that occasion, but amongst his many shrapnel wounds, the piece that lodged in his eye has caused ongoing issues ever since. Yet he is not one to seek revenge or harbour feelings of resentment or bitterness.

Leonidas is one of our turbo-charged evangelists, preaching forgiveness and reconciliation around the country through Scripture Union. He’s been greatly used, and continues serving faithfully through many constant challenges.

I love highlighting stories of hope when so often all you hear is the bad stuff. Keep it up Leonidas and SU!

GLOMore than ConquerorsSermons

‘Shortly before racing in the 1993 World Championships in Toronto, his brother rings to tell him his parents have been murdered and their bodies dumped down a latrine. He still runs and gets a medal, the first Burundian ever to do so…’

Below is the link to Nkaza’s testimony that we put on film last year. It’s well worth a listen.

He’s a national hero and using his influence for good. We support his organisation ‘Amani Africa Burundi’, and their latest strategy as peace-makers is to mobilise the youth nationwide to sign up to seven core values – integrity, honesty, humility, non-violence, unity, being agents of reconciliation and pursuing good over evil (my translation).

He wants to get every young person to sign up and embrace a positive role leading up to the 2020 elections. Everyone carries their identity card by law, but this could accompany it and be used to resist violence and broker peace in many tense situations. Whereas many in the past have been negatively manipulated, this is a beautiful vision which could have a key role in the nation. If anyone gets excited by this and wants to get behind him by sponsoring x hundred/thousand cards (100 at $5, 1000 at $50), do let me know.

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THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

A number of you have written in asking for an update on our appeal for a new vehicle. So this is reporting back to you that all the money came in – hurray – and we’ve ordered a spanking new Toyota Hilux, so can now put Martha out to pasture in the next few weeks. She served us well, but there’s little room for sentiment here, we need to move on!

What will we call the new one? Suggested names included Betsy, Audrey, Ole’ Marge, Daisy, Gertrude, Fred, Hank, and more, but the winning suggestion was…

Wait for it…

Cruisy McCruiseface!!!

Only joking! Sorry Phil, I think we’ll stick with Audrey, which means ‘Strength’! May Audrey serve us for the next two decades or so without any accident and be used to minister to hundreds of thousands of people throughout the land, Amen?!

Thanks again, we couldn’t do it without you.

Whilst I’m at it, below is a quick testimony from Freddy as part of our More Than Conquerors series, do have a look and be inspired by his story. From never wearing shoes or underwear before the age of 14, walking 3 hours a day to and from primary school, to becoming a pioneering educator and leader in Burundi, building four schools which are all the best in their provinces, three orphanages, and a whole lot more:

GLOMore than Conquerors

When I see streetkids messing around or begging from people on our road or downtown, I fear that one day, they’ll end up being rapists, thieves, murderers, coopted as child-soldiers, or some such horrific scenario. And many do. Their futures seem bleak, almost hopeless.

But then I see the lives being transformed at New Generation. And because we’ve been involved a long time, some of those little kids have now grown up and have bucked the trend beautifully to make a difference in their nation, becoming part of the solution rather than the problem.

Meet Eric.

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He was about to run in the 1993 World Championships 800m final in Toronto, when he received a phone call informing him that his parents had been murdered and their bodies dumped down a latrine…

Here is Nkaza sharing some of his truly remarkable story. He’s a national hero because of his sporting achievements, and he’s using his fame now to rally the youth across the nation to march to the beat of a different drum.