Celebrating 20 Years of Tanzania Partnership (January 2022 Newsletter)

We’re celebrating 20 years of the blessings of partnership this year, with one of the highlights coming this month (January 2022).

On January 29/30, 2022: Worship will feature songs we’ve learned from our Tanzanian partners, the choirs will wear the colorful Tanzanian clothing our travelers received as gifts, and there will be a Tanzanian style auction* to raise funds for a laboratory building at the clinic. You won’t want to miss it!

When we worship in Tanzania, we usually ask in advance how many offerings there will be that day. The custom is to collect one offering for the general operation of the parish, and then additional offerings to meet particular needs. Often, a family or group will bring forward a thank offering for a life event, like a graduation or marriage.

You are invited to contribute a thank offering for the blessings of this partnership. Over and above our annual commitments to provide funds for scholarships, medical supplies, and project support, this year we are supporting the construction of a laboratory building for the expanding clinic in Tungamalenga.

Dr. Randy Hurley, an SOTV member with 20 years experience developing the Ilula Health Center into a hospital, observes, “a laboratory facility is crucial for accurate diagnosis of disease. This would allow rapid diagnosis and more expert management of malaria and HIV. It would provide the capability to assess anemia in pregnancy and the opportunity to better manage diabetes. Laboratory capability would lead to more accurate diagnosis of infectious diarrheal diseases.”

How can you help? To give, write checks to SOTV with “TZ Lab” in the memo. Give online to the “20yr Tanzania Anniversary” fund at sotv.org/give.

* What’s a Tanzanian style auction? At the end of worship, the Tanzanian congregants process outside the chapel and form a large circle (At SOTV in January, we’ll do this in the narthex). People who can’t afford to give money instead donate items like a basket of eggs, a bundle of firewood, a bunch of bananas, or a chicken. The bidding often raises extravagant prices for these humble gifts. A Tanzanian pastor explained that this is the way the congregation encourages its members and honors every gift.