Missionaries from Africa thank you for traveling and vaccination in the United States

Lorraine Charinda is celebrating her first American Thanksgiving.

And when she fills the dish with Rev. Barry Burns, who is hosting her with her family this Thursday, it’s not hard to think of at least one thing she’s grateful for: Coronavirus. Double-dose vaccine — and the relationship that allowed her to travel 7,500 miles to get it.

“I couldn’t believe it until I boarded the plane,” said Charinda, a missionary based in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. “I sent my mother a photo:” I really go! “

“It’s something most people can’t get into Northern Katanga,” she continued. “It was really great and great, and every day I am grateful for this opportunity.”

Charinda received her first shot in Columbus on October 23, thanks to a long-standing partnership between the West Ohio Conference and the North Katanga Diocese of the United Methodist Church. The former raised about $ 10,000 to send three missionaries to Columbus so that they could get vaccinations that are difficult to obtain in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Charinda was the first person to board the plane.

She is currently traveling and visiting the congregation throughout the West Ohio Conference from Cincinnati to Toledo. She worships at Epworth United Methodist Church on 4855 Central Avenue in Toledo and Maumee United Methodist Church on Maumee’s 405 Sackett Street at 4:30 pm on Saturday at 8:30, 10 and 11:15. I will give a lecture. It’s Sunday.

Charinda has been a missionary since 2017 through the Global Methodist Board of Directors of the United Methodist Church. She is a practicing undergraduate and graduate degree in agriculture at the University of Africa in her native Zimbabwe, especially as an agricultural expert and specialist in rural economic development. And the University of Namibia.

This means spending a lot of time in this area, especially on the Kamisamba farm owned by the United Methodist Church in Kamina. So she grows crops and trains locals in small-scale farming, which the region depends on, she explained in a conversation at Mommy UMC this week. This will be added to a number of related projects, including a recently launched initiative to develop and distribute seeds specifically suited to local growing conditions. It’s all aimed at lifting her neighbors in her mission field, a rural area where she said she was ranked among the poorest in the country.

The coronavirus pandemic added additional complications to her work.

There are basically no tests available in this area. That is, locals have no way of knowing if their symptoms reflect a coronavirus or one of the already serious concerns such as malaria, cholera, and typhoid fever. And if a person became seriously ill with the virus, she continued, there is essentially no ventilator available.

And a vaccine? Not so many, only in major cities.

According to statistics compiled by Our World in Data, less than 1% (only 0.13%) of the country’s population is partially vaccinated.

This equates to at least 69 percent of the US population receiving partial vaccination.

It is 54% worldwide.

As Charinda knows directly, the situation is terrifying in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Her mother became seriously ill with the coronavirus this summer after a joint visit in Zambia. Charinda was negative for the virus when they left the country. , Her mother tested positive.

“She was really sick, coughing, having trouble breathing and having a high temperature,” Charinda recalled. “It was difficult to see her like that.”

“I was just praying,” she continued. “I didn’t know if she would succeed.”

Thankfully, her mother has recovered, Charinda said.

This experience strengthened her determination to obtain a vaccine against the virus.

“It’s a really shocking near-death experience when someone close to you has been infected with COVID. It motivates you to get vaccinated,” she said. “You want to protect yourself and your loved ones.”

Charinda returned to the Democratic Republic of the Congo on November 30 to ensure her safety by fully inoculating the steps she had taken to protect herself and those around her while continuing her missionary work.

But first there is that turkey supper with Burns.

“I’m happy to be able to do this. It’s great to have her,” said Burns, pastor of Mommy UMC. “For me, this is part of our call at the church. It’s not about us personally. It’s about what we can do as a company.”

Missionaries from Africa thank you for traveling and vaccination in the United States

Source link Missionaries from Africa thank you for traveling and vaccination in the United States

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