Derrick Pringle, pastor of Zambia's Copperbelt congregations and his wife Cherry set out on April 26, 2020 for a visit to their westerly churches in Solwezi and Mufumbwe. They took truckloada of building supplies to finish some projects. In Solwezi they ordained Rodrick Epomba as a deacon. Everyone along with us rejoiced at this event as we've visited with them several times in the past six years. Rodrick will provide leadership for the Solwezi congregation and help with the other churches as well. There are four churches in the Copperbelt area. Mufulira, Solwezi, Mufumbwe, and Manyinga. What follows is a description of photos that he sent me from the visit.
We trust that you all are keeping well and safe during this present plague. America certainly appears to be taking the worst of it. We are fine and despite the odd setback, it is business as usual. No one in my area has been affected. Officially, we are told that Zambia is fairly free and now churches can meet. Unofficially, I hear that people are dying and it is being blamed on malaria!
Tomorrow, Sunday, we are taking 8 tons of material to Solwezi and Mufumbwe. See attached picture of loaded trucks. Solwezi Community Hall. Double door frame with security grill gate, Rose wood doors, locks and tools. Bucket and basin stand for hand washing.
Then to Mufumbwe: Diamond Mesh security fence, 300m plus 6m double swing gate and pedestrian gate. Drip line irrigation line, 300m plus all fittings, valves etc. Fertilizers, insecticides, fungicides, Seeds – cabbage, rape, tomatoes. Cabbage seedlings 250 as a kick start. Water tank 5,000lts and electric borehole pump with fittings including 100m poly pipe.
For deacon house – 4 frames and doors, 4 windows with glass, 30 roofing sheets, 20 packets of cement.Bucket and basin stand for handwashing for Mufumbwe and Manyinga.
We are taking up a full complement of staff and I plan to have everything installed by Friday. On the way back will spend the Sabbath at Solwezi where I will ordain Rodrick as deacon.Thank you very much for your financial assistance and your prayers will be most welcome for a successful trip. Cherry and I fasted this last Thursday.
All the best,
Through the grace of God we established everything that I planned to do at Mufumbwe last week. Pictured is the 5,000lt water tank for the drip line irrigation. You will note that there is provision next to it for another tank should it become necessary. Also put in are three garden taps for personnel convenience and a shower for the deacon.The borehole Indian hand pump was removed and electric pump installed. It fills the 5,000lt tank in one hour.
This is the first drip line bed of 30m with cabbage seedlings. In total there will be five beds with provision for another five. I want to see how the first lot turns out before further expenditure. In total we planted 260 cabbage seedlings and seeds of tomato, rape and cabbage.
We erected 300m of diamond mesh and barbwire security fence to protect the buildings and the irrigation system. You can see the drip lines on the other side of the fence.
Because of the possibility of theft all equipment has been stored in the church hall which has displeased me. Picture is of storerooms that we are building to house all of this.
While our trucks were at Mufumbwe we transported in 3,000 kiln baked blocks for a four room church house for Christopher. We also brought in sand and stone. We have not received any finance for this project but have saved on heavy transport costs using our own trucks.
You can also see a water tap at the green bucket for the community and the top of the borehole on the right. We had to make up a steel cage placed on top to prevent theft. Note the pedestrian gate in the security fence. On the other end of the fence is a 6m double swing vehicle gate.
On the Sabbath, 2nd May Cherry and I drove to Solwezi from Mufumbwe to attend services there and also to ordain Rodrick Epomba as a deacon in our new hall. The photos is after the ceremony. Far left is Rodrick and his wife Patricia. On the right is his mother. I know it is unusual to have the mother on stage but Rodrick told me that his mother was a great influence on him as regards a Christian upbringing. I considered this rather appropriate after reading 1 Tim 1:5 and 2 Tim 3:15. Prior to the ordination, I gave a sermon called Lessons from Timothy. I went through the first book of Timothy picking out the main points and elaborating on the 15 points in 1 Tim 3:1-14.
Cherry presenting Rodrick with a new NIV Bible.
Rodrick and Patricia at the front of the Rose Wood doors of the new Community Hall.
The new Community Hall! This hall, 135m2 was built entirely by Rodrick, Ben and occasionally some other members. It is a well-built structure and Rodrick is to be highly commended. It is pretty rough though, needing to be plastered, the concrete floor, ceiling etc. but have run out of money. Rodrick has started digging a well and if the water is good I will set up a system for water on tap. And, depending on the finances will build two male and two female ablutions. Due to Coronavirus, the prisons have stopped all visiting. Rodrick, out of his own finances, bought six small radios for the inmates so that they can hear his radio broadcasts on Monday evenings. The wardens and inmates are very encouraged by what they are hearing/ We have a star in Solwezi.
Under construction October 2019
UPDATED May 28, 2020
Encouraging news from Derrick and Cherry Pringle in Zambia:
Now our latest antics in Zambia.
It is business as usual. We have to wear face masks in public, church services are restricted to 50 people and to last no longer than an hour and that’s about it. A health official had to inspect our hall to see, amongst other things, that we could have social distancing. It was passed with favourable comments.
So Cherry and I packed our bags, loaded two of our trucks with 8 tons of material and headed to our church in Mufumbwe, 500kms from us. With assistance from LifeNets we set up a drip line irrigation system for vegetable production of cabbage, rape and tomatoes. I had previously built a stout room 4m high to accommodate two 5,000lt tanks for this scheme. At present, I only put one up to see how the enterprise develops. As a kickoff, they have been provided with fertilizer, seed, insecticides and 260 cabbage seedlings. We have had electricity connected to the site so pulled up the hand-operated Indian pump and put down an electric pump to deliver water up to the tank for gravity feed to the drip lines. It is a community project with the proceeds being split in three ways. One, as income to the members, two, for fertilizers, seed etc., and 10% for the church. I am hoping that the 10% will cover the church operating costs for that area.
We have dedicated members and there is a shortage of vegetables so this should develop into a viable enterprise.
I also took one of our fencing gangs up and we erected a 300m security fence around the property.
We traveled up on a Sunday and had everything completed by Friday. On the way back to Kitwe on the Sabbath, we stopped over in Solwezi for the church service. This was in our new building of 135m2 replacing the old one which we had outgrown. It is still very rough, just the walls and a roof but it was very well built by our member, Rodrick Epomba and a few helpers with their services freely given. Rodrick conducts a successful radio broadcast once a week. He also has a bible study at the local prison. Due to the Coronavirus, his visits have been temporarily suspended. He then went and bought six small radios at his own expense so that the inmates can listen to his radio broadcasts.
Rodrick, who graduated last year as the best student teacher of the year, has also proved himself in the past in organizing and conducting activities at the Feasts and other events.
It was therefore my great pleasure to ordain him as deacon. I have high hopes for his continued excellent service to God and man.
All praise goes to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ for a successful journey to the North West.
All the best,