CCZT Newsletter – December 2021
Dear CCZT Partners,
We are at the end of 2021 and as such, we would like to look back and count with you the many blessings we received. We praise the Lord for enabling us to serve Him in all the ministries at Covenant College Zambia Trust (CCZT).
We were able to train our students for two full semesters this year. Due to the covid-19 restrictions, we couldn’t receive lecturers from abroad in the first semester, but we managed to teach the lessons with the help of Zambian pastors. In between, we got unique virtual experiences! For instance, the AGM, the CEM courses and a seminar from Mukhanyo Theological College in South Africa were all successfully conducted online.
Although the start of the second semester was delayed for more than a month due to the 3rd Wave of Covid 19, we were nonetheless able to teach all the planned lessons. We even received lecturers from abroad again: Rev. Nedson Banda (Malawi), Rev. Johannes Aucamp (RSA) and Dr. David Galletta (USA).
In June, we said goodbye to our administrator Samba, who resigned. But when she heard about our
need with unfulfilled vacancies, she came back to help us again when we started our second semester. She has since re-joined the college. While the students are currently on break, a skeleton staffs, on the other hand, is still working in full swing as they prepare for opening next year in spite of the looming 4th wave of covid pandemic.
The Solar Energy Project
In this month of December, the major equipment and accessories were delivered just before Christmas. The construction of the new control house is also on course nearing completion. The installation of the equipment is planned to start on the 3rd of January 2022. What a blessing this will be for the running of all our ministries once implemented!
For our farm 2021 was a good year. We had a good maize harvest! This was somehow enough food for the students and a surplus for selling. To raise some income for the College, we sold 20 tonnes of maize bran and several subsequent batches of 500 birds of broiler chickens per month, although we lost one batch, due to the onslaught of the New Castle disease. It shows just how dependent we are on God’s grace in all we do!
On the cattle, we have the following updates. The goats have remained static in terms of growth between 45 and 52 partly due to lack of adequate paddocks and deaths. Upon consultation, we were advised to crossbreed the Heifer goats with the local breed in order to overcome diseases and deaths.
This is what we have so far implemented and hope to see stability. On the other hand, the cows have given us 4 calves after selling off 4 bulls on the open market. The piggery has continued to give us good business during the year and we intend to increase the number of sows to boost the business in the next year.
Our vegetable gardens were enlarged in order to produce more varieties and quantities of vegetables. We also made a good start with a strawberry project. And we opened up a new field for our demo farming of maize where we have planted on 22 Lima’s. This will give us the opportunity to plant double as much as previous years.
We are nonetheless concerned about the projection of the rain pattern in the current farming season. Itonly started to rain in mid-December, a month late, but up till now it is very erratic and unevenly distributed across the region. As a result, we are unable to plant soya beans and groundnuts. As such, we are hoping to plant sunflower on a large scale, the Lord permitting. Please join us in our prayers for rain.
For CEM, 2021 was not an easy year. Due to the covid pandemic restrictions, we couldn’t go out to schools for training anymore. It also affected our education conferences and seminars. Our sister Marjanne continued to work from The Netherlands this year as a result. Hopefully, we will see her return to base next year with the covid pandemic declining, God willing. In the meantime, providentially, it enabled her to receive regular medical help for her arthritis problem and thus making her more ready to come back.
Beside this update, our new colleague Martha, who joined us this year in January, fell ill in July and it disrupted her activities of developing teaching material and conducting radio broadcasts. However, she is on the mend and hopefully she will re-join us next year. This made us realise just how vulnerable it is to work with a small team. We are happy to share that on the 1st of November, Mrs Daisy Chipanga joined the CEM team. Together with Marjanne she concentrates on developing movies in Chinyanja. She also is teaching weekly at our Children’s Ministry that takes place every Saturday afternoon.
Also during 2021, we saw how God was in control and had His own plan! In 2020, Martha and Marjanne started making Bible story movies in Chinyanja and English to spread via WhatsApp for children in Zambia, but now they have been enabled to reach out to many regions all over the world in different languages. This is a breakthrough and a major achievement for the ministry, which has come about in spite of the restrictions imposed by the pandemic! In view of this, several missionaries and mission organisations afar field have asked Marjanne to join her WhatsApp and Facebook networking. This inturn has given her a ‘new fulltime mission task’ (virtually) which has resulted in working together with such people from all over the world and in sending out each week several movies to far above 100addresses or internet sites.
So far, we have sent out 175 English movies together with work sheets (We just finished the stories of the Old Testament), 70 Dutch movies, 65 Bemba movies (A Zambian dialect), 60 Arabic movies, 40 Urdu movies and about 40 Chinyanja movies (A Zambian dialect). This is a real blessing! We are also getting positive responses from countries that are officially closed for mission type of work. Beneficiaries of such movies are also forwarding them to their wider circles of their mission work and hence the entire work is gradually widening. For instance, we have information of a particular bishop who is forwarding our movies to 127 pastors in his own domination with a design of sharing them further down to their own individual local churches! Another testimony came from one of the CCZT graduates who requested to have a Sunday school teacher in his church to receive our tailor made material. In the end, this same teacher was able to share the same with 10 other teachers in the locality and now they have between them a combined number of 900 children sitting under our Bible lessons. In this way, we are receiving pictures from schools, orphanages, various children groups, etc., networking solely virtually and thus indirectly surmounting the restrictions imposed by the Covid pandemic.
We have no idea ultimately how many children are being reached with the Good Tidings of the Gospel especially in areas where Christianity is forbidden or restricted but we are content to know that as long as we sow the seed, God promises fruit in due course!
In case we have individuals or groups interested to connect with Marjanne so that they too begin to share the Bible stories in their own respective local dialects, they should simply contact the undersigned and they will be connected. This is a program we would want to continue to pursue in 2022 and; hence,we covet your prayers in this regard especially that the good Lord would make us sufficient for His work amidst the so many restrictions and contradiction brought about by the pandemic in our world.
We wish you all a blessed and prosperous New Year!
Pastor Emmanuel Sakala