Tropical with two dry seasons, the shilling, Kampala, coffee tea, cotton, tobacco, potatoes, 91,135 square miles, all things characteristic of the Republic of Uganda. A country that has been war torn and pillaged by the Lord’s Resistance Army and Joseph Kony for the past few decades. Uganda is a nation where hope can still be found, and bravery runs deep.
One of the most brave things that one can do in a world with so much evil is to stand up for what is right, to protect, to defend, and to fight for those who have no voice. Edmond Burke said, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Hear The Cry and A Jesus Church want to be people known for running toward the areas most people would run away from.
One of our friends and partners, Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe has been doing just that. She has enrolled thousands of girls who have been targeted and abused by the LRA, into St. Monica’s vocational school in Uganda. By teaching practical life skills to these young women, she gives them hope, and shows they can be independent. Teaching vocational life skills, she empowers them to provide for themselves, communicating to each young woman that they have brilliant minds, and are capable of changing their world. By displaying value, she proclaims over their lives they no longer need to be victims, but can be healed, restored, and impart hope and freedom to others that they meet.
In 2007, she was a CNN hero, and in 2014, one of Time’s 100 most influential people. She saw the need, did not back down in fear but instead helped her people in a time the needed it most. She is fighting back by restoring hope and dignity where the LRA has left a wake of destruction. In her documentary Sewing Hope, she tells how she has used a sewing machine as a weapon against Kony and the LRA.
One of the biggest ways in which we can help those around us is by creating and giving jobs to those in need. There’s an old proverb that says, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” Sister Rosemary is doing this; giving young women and their children an opportunity for education and skills that can be transferred to a sustainable job. This is one of the most practical ways we can help those in need. In doing this we bestow dignity and worth.
Can you imagine life without your job? How would you afford a place to live, food, or clothing? These are things that hit at the very basic parts of being human. How can we expect to help bring the Good News to others if we overlook their most basic need?
By providing an income or a skill, we are practically showing others Jesus. We tell them that we acknowledge their situation, and want to meet some of their most basic needs, and the reason we want to do this is Jesus.
At Hear The Cry, we believe that every person has been made with inexplicable value and worth. So we to want rally behind those brave souls like Sister Rosemary to encourage and uplift their work, while encouraging others to join in.
For more on Sister Rosemary:
Sewing Hope – available on Netflix