Mission work in East Africa goes way back to 1902, and since then African Quakers have continued to remain faithful to this call to share the life and mission of Jesus and to give witness to the gospel in Africa, among Africans and the rest of the world. Friends United Meeting and the Friends Africa Board of Missions are entering a new era, challenging all Quakers—most especially African Quakers—to take over the mantle and develop a new approach to mission through global partnership.
For several years, we have been helping to support three missionaries to the world: Nicholas and Dorcas Otieno, Kenyan missionaries who serve as Living Letters in Tanzania; and Oscar Mmbali, the Kenyan pastor who serves in Belize. This has made East African Quakers and FUM in Africa more of a sending church. The Friends Africa Board of Missions is expected to broaden the perspective of missions among African Quakers—to go beyond pastoral care and local evangelism into cross-cultural ministry.
During the Yearly Meeting annual sessions this year, FUM General Secretry Kelly Kellum and Africa Ministries Office Director John Muhanji introduced Yearly Meeting leaders to the paradigm of “the giving tree,” an idea which aims to get more African Quakers on board and committed to supporting mission work in Africa. The giving tree depends on spreading knowledge about missions and the importance of supporting this ministry. Once this information gains widespread support through the Yearly Meeting leaders, it will change mindsets and influence support by individuals and congregations.
In the spirit of solidarity and co-responsibility among African Quakers, this paradigm assures the missionaries who are sent to transform lives in various parts of the world of total support by their local church. It will help them build the reign of God and become confident agents of God’s kingdom.
The Africa Board of Missions urges Friends to support this paradigm, to obey the call and GO. Through this platform the African Quakers gain the opportunity to offer spiritual and financial support for missions and to offer pledges. Use the Africa Ministries Office Mpesa paybill number 514608, and your donation will be dedicated for missions within East Africa.
—Alfred Wasike and Catherine Gunza