Prayer plea for replenishment of hope for Mzimvubu
Mzimvubu, a region in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, is rural, hilly and impoverished. Truro Diocese forged links between their diocese and ours over a decade ago in response to the difficult life-circumstances of the children.
Pre-pandemic, families suffered consequences of HIV/AIDS that took the lives of many parents. This left many children in the care of grandparents or even to fend for themselves. The pandemic has intensified the problems.
Economically, what little employment there was has all but collapsed as companies battle with the financial fallout of Covid and lay off employees. Environmentally, storms have decimated any smallholdings people had to support their food supplies. And emotionally, a great many elderly couples have died leaving already frail families in dire circumstances.
As well as the trauma of losing grandparents, who might be the only carers of children, the families also lose a vital social subsidy paid to the grandparents. Schools have closed and along with them, the only opportunity in the day for children to have a proper meal.
Supporting with prayer from Cornwall to Mzimvubu
With support from across the parishes in Cornwall, the Truro Diocese International Links Committee (TDILC) has supported the region over the past 18 months. Working with Bishop Tsietsi and his team, vulnerable children and families have been identified and supported, but there is so much more to do.
“The second wave of Covid 19 left us even more devastated… people are sick, dying, no jobs… poverty is escalating at a very frustrating rate and anxiety is at its peak.
Revd. Simtembile Apiwe Flatela, the Mzimvubu Diocesan Coordinator for Disaster Management, said, “The second wave of Covid 19 left us even more devastated… people are sick, dying, no jobs… poverty is escalating at a very frustrating rate and anxiety is at its peak. The help from the Diocese of Truro is Messianic. It truly is a symbol of God’s love to the faithful. Our contacts with people may be limited for worship and social but hope is replenished when they see the Church giving back at the time of need.
The most powerful thing we can all do is hold this fragile community in our prayers. Please pray for the children. It’s hard to imagine a child’s world that takes away their parents, then their grandparents, then their school, then their ability to grow food. Hunger is a constant companion, along with a great many fears.
Hope can grow with prayer and practicality
It might feel hopeless, but hope can grow with prayer and practicality. Please pray for the church in Mzimvubu as they provide pastoral care and reach out to those in need by providing for children and most vulnerable. Christine Salaman of the Truro Diocese International Links Committee says, “They are working hard to be a light in their local community. Our assistance supports and encourages them to further the work they are doing themselves.” And as Revd Simtembile says, hope is replenished when people see the church giving back at a time of need.
“Hope is replenished when people see the church giving back at a time of need.”
Please pray for more help and stability in the region, for the sustainability of the church, and for help to reach those most in need. For more specific ideas of what to pray for, please click on the link to Mzimvubu on our International Links page where prayer requests are regularly updated.