Father Kandole's Visit to St. Thomas'
After many years of contact through prayer, letters, emails and phone calls, Father Samuel Kandole finally met his friend John Paul Westin, and came face to face with his brothers and sisters at St. Thomas’ Church!
As part of our 175th anniversary celebration, our parish arranged and paid for Father Samuel to come over for an eleven day visit and “mission of presence”. Through much prayer and effort we finally overcame all the bureaucratic hurdles and he arrived at 3:19am on Sunday morning March 20! He was hosted first by the Westins and then by Don and Janet Higgins. From these home bases he took part in many activities in our parish and beyond. He sampled our life in Christ at many levels and shared with us how the Body of Christ in his congregation lives and works.
While at St. Thomas’ he enjoyed various kinds of worship services, culminating in his preaching at our Parish Communion on March 27. He met Bishop Pitman and had breakfast with the members of the Avalon East Deanery. He took part in the weekly ecumenical Pastors Prayer group, which meets at St. David’s Church. He accompanied our clergy and visited in our hospitals, nursing homes and even Her Majesty’s Penitentiary. He joined a Cursillo sharing group, weekly book study, a mens’ group, the Pilgrimage Study, and enjoyed our potluck and opening meeting of the new Vestry. He shared deeply with us in our life of prayer, worship, fellowship and ministry during his short time with us, and we were all blessed greatly by our time together.
Our Youth Group raised over $1400 for youth and parish ministries with their “Off the Grid” overnight. Due to their and others’ generosity, the parish was able to give Father Kandole a parting financial gift for him and his family, as well as for the new parish he was going to as soon as he returned home. We also sent a gift to his bishop to support our brother Samuel as he continues his studies at Uganda Christian University. Bishop Kaziimba, of Mityana Diocese, has chosen him to further his studies for the next two years as he builds up his newly formed parish of St. Mark, close to his former parish of St. John’s, Mubende.
We thank God for Father Samuel, and our life and work together in the gospel, and pray that one day we might see one another again. Until then we have promised to continue to pray for one another and remain open to the Lord’s leading in how we can express our support for each other in new, tangible and fruitful ways.
Letters from Father Kandole
March 7, 2010: Greetings in the Lord: Love and Peace of God be onto you my dear brother John Paul, how is the family and all God's Children from the Church of the St. Thomas'? Did you receive the photos I sent to you or they got lost? I am happy to inform you that Government have now sent us malaria drugs in all Health Centers but there is more need of Mosquito nets for especially Young Children in most poor families. The building Committee of St. John's Church sat on 1-3-2010 and we are organizing a donors' Conference or Fund raising to complete the Church building on 20-3-2010. We have budgeted 8 Million Ugandan shillings ($2000). We have invited our friends in Kampala and some local leaders in our communities to help us in this noble work of God. The major work that we have is Flooring, Plastering outside, Painting and seats. We kindly register our prayer request to you and your Church that we achieve our goal by His grace- that invited guests may have journey mercy and Contribute wholeheartedly to wards this work.
My love to you all.
Yours in the Lord, Rev Kandole Samuel
February 14, 2010: Dear Father John Paul my brother in Christ Jesus,
THANK YOU TO ST. THOMAS' NET DONORS!
A big "thank you" to the members of St. Thomas' that donated $942.16 to pay for approx. 80 mosquito nets for the families of St. John's Parish in Mubende. It worked out to almost 1,700,000 schilling (Uganda currency). This means they can buy most of the nets they required (80 of 100 estimated) to protect their children from the malaria-bearing mosquitos. With all of the activity and fund-raising already on the go with Haiti, your response has been most generous. God bless each one who gave at this time. Father Kandole will inform us how the purchases have gone, etc.
RECEIVED BY EMAIL JANUARY 14, 2010
Dear John Paul,
May the Lord bless you so much for your prayers to us and our young Children. Tomorrow on Friday there is a team that will come from the Ministry of Health to exactly check and test Children's blood and see what is killing them but what we can see now are bigger Mosquitoes than those we always see due to heavy rains.
I am sure that if we buy and distribute mosquito nets especially to those families with very young Children and pregnant women it will help so much. I saw on your web site that a mosquito net costs 2000 shillings but the email I sent you it costs 20,000 twenty thousand shillings and it is treated with insecticide so it repels mosquitoes.
Brother thank you very much to have share it with your Church and I pray that something is done to save these young Children's lives.
Greetings to family and the Church of St. Thomas'. In the Cross of Christ, Rev. Kandole Samuel
RECEIVED BY EMAIL JANUARY 6, 2010
Father John Paul, I am happy that you received my email and I am certain that God will answer your prayers. Indeed it is trouble this way in regard to malaria.
Brother, Mosquito nets are available on open markets at 2,000 shillings each and are treated. God willing if I can be able at least to buy nets for 100 families and save the lives of these young innocent Children of God. It is unbelievable to say that 98% of our families have sick Children. We still have a lot of rains and I am sure this is very cause of a lot of mosquitoes that are spreading malaria.
Love and greetings from Florence, Grace and Rita and the people of our parish.
Your brother in the Lord, Rev. Fr. Kandole Samuel
RECEIVED BY EMAIL JANUARY 4, 2010
Dear Father John Paul Westin,
It gives me a great pleasure to say praise the living Lord this evening. How was the Christmas? This way it was nice though we are losing very many of our Children due to malaria which has become epidemic these days. On Christmas Day I baptized 16 Children, but it was a shock to me on 27-12-2009 when two of them died of malaria. We need your prayers whenever you meet to pray. Maybe as we have been receiving a lot of rains and so there is a lot of Mosquitoes when people have no mosquitoes nets it might be the cause.
Brother be assured of our prayers to you, Carolyn, Miriam, Anna and Lucia. We also pray for all our beloved brothers and sisters in the Church of St. Thomas'.
In the born Lord Jesus Christ,
Rev Kandole Samuel
I am indeed very sorry to have delayed to inform you that I received money and I was able to buy and distribute 77 Treated Mosquito nets to most vulnerable Children of age 2 months -3 years the line was very long and many others did not get some nets. About 82 went without nets. Parishes of this way (like ours) have many people.
Brother I have been attending a work shop for one and half week and I had no access to (the) internet and I am very sorry for such a delay. The Health Ministry team which visited Confirmed that malaria is epidemic and the following are missing per now: drugs, mosquito nets, indoor insecticide sprays and funds to sensitize communities how to care for them selves.
I took somebody on Sunday with a Camera to take photos while distributing the nets and very soon you shall receive them. I pray that I get my own Camera.
Father John Paul, from the bottom of my heart and all my parishioners, we sincerely extend our heartfelt gratitude and thanks to you and all your parishioners for a such love and brotherly hood you have shown to us! Those who received nets were so happy and I informed the rest to
continue in prayer and God will answer them. May God bless you, your family and all your good Samaritan Parishioners. In the Reigning Lord, Rev. Fr. Kandole Samuel