OCMC is thrilled to have sent our first Mission Team of 2013 to Kenya this past weekend. Team members traveled to the Makarios III Patriarchal Seminary in Nairobi before traveling to Lodwar where they will be serving for the next week. They are helping plant the seeds of Christianity to those who have begun to respond to the Gospel in the Turkana tribe. Evangelism and teaching are taking place in rural areas outside of Lodwar.
This Team, being led by OCMC Executive Director, Fr. Martin Ritsi, will help the three Orthodox clergy in the Turkana region nurture and expand the Church among the Turkana people. The Turkana are one of the least evangelized groups on the continent. Through use of Bible skits, stories and the use of the Jesus Film (in the Turkana language), Team members will present the Good News of Christ’s love for His people in four villages that have no church and that have not yet been exposed to the Orthodox Faith.
At the time of the team’s arrival, there was an election being held in Kenya for the presidency. Millions of Kenyans are voting in the first elections since 2007, when polls were marred by violence. There have been sporadic reports of violence in Mombassa, which is far from where the team is serving. Despite the violence, the Kenyan people are peacefully standing in lines to vote today. Please keep the team in your prayers as they serve, bringing the message of Christ’s love to the Kenyan people in the midst of the political situation around them.
During the month of February and into the first week of March, the Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) held its first-ever social media fundraising campaign. The primary goal was to raise $2,500 to be used for medicines for the OCMC healthcare team traveling to Tanzania this fall. The secondary goal was to use social media to help spread awareness about Orthodox missions and the OCMC.
At the end of the fundraising campaign, friends of the Mission Center on FaceBook and Twitter exceeded the monetary goal by donating $3,005 for medicines to Tanzania. These funds will accompany the OCMC team that will serve communities that otherwise go without healthcare services by treating malaria, pneumonia, STDs, TB, and infections from AIDS free of charge.
In addition to being thrilled that the fundraiser was successful, OCMC was also very happy at the amount of awareness that was spread during the campaign and the heartfelt prayers that accompanied each gift of support. The OCMC FaceBook fan base grew by over 500 fans due to many of those who shared the campaign with their friends, families, and parishes on FaceBook, and it was exciting to see people participate in missions through this new medium. If you’d like to become part of the OCMC FaceBook community, visit http://www.facebook.com/OrthodoxChristianMissionCenter, or you can follow the OCMC on Twitter at http://twitter.com/OCMC.