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Thankful for God’s faithfulness

CMS missionary Judith Calf has recently finished her ministry with the Diocese of Lweru in Tanzania. Here she shares her experience of finishing well.

Over recent weeks, if someone was to ask me what words I have used most when thinking about our God, it would be faithful and thankful. His faithfulness and my thankfulness in response.  

For everything that this last month in Tanzania has been, I am thankful. Despite some difficult moments, challenges and stresses, there have been incredible times of joy, encouragement, and love during my last month in Tanzania. And through it all, the faithfulness of God—uaminifu wa Mungu.  

Our college farewelled our evangelist students, who graduated after completing their Foundation Course; then I was farewelled by colleagues, friends, and Christian brothers and sisters.  

At the end of the service, I was humbled to have Bishop Lugumira, Bishop Godfrey, Bishop Vithalis, and Vicar General Rutabanziwbwa pray for me. It was a prayer of thankfulness, but also of sending me on, wherever that will be, to continue the work of the gospel. There have been a few moments of laughter about what happens when three bishops lay hands on you in prayer! 

Finishing well 

It has been my prayer that I would finish well in Tanzania. It has been a challenge to balance living in the present, but also preparing to leave. I wanted to give myself fully to all that life and ministry in Lweru needed; and do so in a way that gave honour to Jesus—as well as respecting the cultural patterns of saying goodbye.  

I had opportunities to share with our Bible School and Diocesan staff all that they have been to me, and thank them for their partnership, care, patience and perseverance with me. They have taught me and helped me grow in faith and ministry. It has also been important to provide time and space for being farewelled with singing, speeches, prayers and gifts—no to the chickens, but yes to many other heartfelt and personal expressions of thankfulness and mutual love. 

With humble thanks, my ministry has been valued and brought blessing to Lweru Diocese—more than 150 evangelists and pastors have been trained in ministry and growing in knowledge of God’s word. Although I do not know what lies ahead for me, I also want to ‘finish well’ with my magnificent friends and supporters of CMS who have prayed and cared for me and enabled my ministry in Tanzania. I have much to be thankful for. 

PRAY 

Give thanks to God for his loving faithfulness and for his care and provision for Judith over many years of ministry with CMS. Pray for the work of the Bible college in Lweru under the new principal, Pastor Enock.