WELCOME

The Children of Zion Village is a Christian home for orphans in the southern African nation of Namibia. It is located along the Zambezi River in the northeast corner of Namibia. Our children come from several different tribal and language groups.
 
The "village" opened in January, 2003 and is now home to 57 children. Most of the children have been placed in our care because they have lost their parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles to AIDS.
 
Here the boys and girls receive love, nutrition, shelter, healthcare, academic, vocational and Bible education, and become part of one large Christian family. Our missionaries, volunteers, and Namibian staff work together to raise the children in our "village".

VILLAGE NEWS

Spiritual Retreat at Zion

 

I Press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 3:14 

This time our theme for our Spiritual retreat for staff was “Stay the Course”.  In life we get bumped and pushed, we run into obstacles and challenges, we have ups and downs.  Sometimes we get off the course.  But we should always stay focused and keep our eyes on Jesus.  He will always direct us and lead us.  He will give us wisdom and discernment.  But, we must be willing to listen and to do what we should do and go where we should go. 

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Our day started in prayer and praise songs.  Then there was a morning speaker and an activity outside.  It was a bit concerning (the outside activity) because it had been raining and the grounds were wet and muddy.  Our task was to get our egg (the unreached people of the world) without stepping inside the big circle, and take it through the obstacle course with us.  Do not break the egg or let it alone.  Always keep it at your side (discipleship). 

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Some places our team was tied together with ropes.  One place we had to swing from the rope to reach the beam on the other side and then we could not step off until the entire team was together.  One place we had to get over the ropes and inside without touching the ropes.  Often the event was really just like the events of life.  Many challenges come our way.  Without other believers to call on for help and without God by our side, we would never make it.  But when we have others to lend us a hand and God to keep us on the path and give us strength to not give up, we can make it. 

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We were thankful the rain held off long enough so we did not get too wet and just a bit muddy.  We continued the day with speakers and a wonderful lunch.  The day ended with stations.  One was a craft – the star.  The star can guide us and did guide the shepherds to Jesus.  Focus your eyes on Jesus for the way, the hope, peace, love and grace.  One station was a prayer wall where they could write prayer requests and pray for others prayer requests.  One was the cross where they could read passages in the Bible and fall to their knees in prayer, leaving all the worries and trouble at the foot of the cross. 

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We thank God for the day and pray that there was something that impacted the lives of the participants.  We thank God that He can get us back on the path even when we slip.  We thank God for His grace and love that is unconditional and we pray that we can listen more closely to His calling and direction.

We also thank Lena and Johannes Ebner who helped a lot with the activities and prepared a couple of the messages.  Mostly, we give God the Glory!!! 

Field Day Zion Mission School

On November 27 we had a great field day event at Zion Mission School.  The event was organized by one of our 6 month volunteers, Rebecca Westbrooks.  The children were organized in teams with a teacher and organized by color of tie dyed shirt that Rebecca also made.  So, it was a competition between the teams.  It started all together with the big parachute. 

Then the teams divided out an were warmed up and ready for the relays. There were many: wheel barrow races, tug of war, carry the egg race, roll the tire race, tied leg/three legged race, bobbing for apples and the water balloon toss. 

        

                      

       

                      

                                    

The races were followed by the awarding of medals and speeches to thank Rebecca for all of her hard work and organization of the event.  Even her family was here to see her in action with the children.  The children also sang songs of praise and worship while they styled their shades and beads.

                

The small ones watched from high and low and joined in on the dancing for sure.

           

After lunch they enjoyed the bouncy castles, including a water slide, and face painting. 

                                                

                       

We thank you and love you Rebecca.  We thank God for your service at Zion and we hope we see you back here again!!!  May God continue to Bless you in your journey with Him!!!

           

End of COZV Mission School Awards Celebration

The school year is coming to an end at Zion Mission Primary School.  A lot of practice, preparation and hard work was experienced to reach this time.  School actually closes the end of November but the awards celebration was held on Friday 15 November.  Many invitations to the dignitaries and community went out.  Many hours of practice on dance, song and performance were coming to a close.  Early Friday morning we loaded the vehicles with the children from Zion.  The others were to meet us at the Shell station to march through town. 

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Some adults were unloaded at the hall to set up and prepare the head table.  Now, for the waiting.  Waiting for traffic control to lead us in safety through town.  So, what do you do while you wait?  You take pictures!

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Finally, we were off.  Marching with the beautiful blue banner that Judy Lenehan from Mt Zion UMC made for us.  The route took us through the streets of Katima singing with the drum beat the entire way.  It was quite a distance so the smallest ones got a lift in the car.  Smiles from people along the route and hooks from people in cars.  It was a sea of red shirts singing Glory to God.  “We are marching in the light of God.  We are marching in the light of God.” 

                             

We were greeted by parents at the hall.  The children quickly got water after a long, hot march and the program began with the national anthem. Two of the older children that come from town to school at Zion were the Masters of Ceremonies.

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  The children all did a wonderful job performing.  From the youngest (age 3) to the oldest. 

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There were guest speakers: The governor, yes, the governor, one of the chiefs/Induna from a nearby tribe, the School Administrator (Travis Curry) and the Principle. 

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The focus of the speech from Travis was the theme for the school this year: 

Stay the Course.  (this is an abbreviated version)

Everyone should understand the importance of correct preparation for life, so that they may be prepared to the purposes that GOD as set for our lives.

Hebrews 12:1 reminds us that as God’s people, we are running a race on this earth and that we should run with patience, keeping the finish line in mind. So how can we practically prepare for the race that we are engaged in? Here is a brief review of 4 steps of preparation for race of life.

Step 1 – Prepare with victory in mind.

Step 2 – Have a heart after God. In life you need to have the heart of David.

Step 3 – Have the courage of you conviction. A conviction is different to a preference.

Step 4 - Character to withstand temptation. Life is not fair, but God is always there.

So as you run with patience the race that is set before you, equip yourself with the heart of David, the courage of Daniel and the character of Joseph. Put on the whole amour of God and run with the full expectation that you will win. Know that God, your God, is with you every step of the race.  There will be many goals but God is the ultimate  goal with the ultimate prize. 

Lorna had the privilege of handing out certificates, prizes and hugs to the students.  Also, a great presentation of song and dance ended in a human pyramid that was terrific. 

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The celebration continued with fun and food at Zion in the afternoon.  We give God the Glory for such a wonderful day/year.  Also, a special thank you to the teachers that work with these children each day, the parents that show support and encouragement, the staff at Zion that prepared the children early in the morning and also the delicious lunch, and the volunteers that were helping each step of the way.  Rebecca Westbrooks taught the children many dances and encouraged them in the fantastic pyramid.  Thank you for your prayers and support or something such as this could never happen.  THANK YOU ALL!!!!

Fashion, Fun, Food and Talent at COZV

We love to have fun here at Zion.  Sometimes we are just crazy but laughing is good for the soul, we enjoy the moments of love and laughter.  One of the ways we enjoy each other is eating together as a family.  The traditional African braii is always so delicious: Chicken, pap and cabbage.  Even our guests Becky and Kate enjoyed with us. 

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After the braii we had showed off our talent. There was singing and lots of dancing.  Rebecca (one of our volunteers) taught the children many dance moves.  She even sang a beautiful song with one of our girls, Efa. The beautiful ballet was to the music “Give Me Jesus”. 

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Then for more fun and laughter, we had a fashion show!!!  Hysterical… 

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Even the staff and yes, Mama Lorna participated!  Rebecca and I even modeled matching mother/daughter dresses and Liseli and I had matches ballet dresses.  Too funny!!!

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Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy.  Then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”  The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.  Psalm 126: 2, 3

Happy Birthday Lorna

I am very blessed to be celebrating my birthday for the third year in a row in Namibia!  I was very blessed with many joyous celebrations. 

It started a couple of days before my birthday when the inside staff called me to come.  I did not have any idea of what was going on.  But they made me sit and then they all came and circled around me singing in their language.  Then they blessed me and sang Happy Birthday and gave me a heavy box with strict instructions not to open it until 19 Oct. 

On Saturday, Oct 19, I had coffee and a wonderful morning with my most wonderful husband and friend.  He got me a new shatangi (the type of traditional skirt they wear here) with beautiful bright butterflies.  I was excited to open the box from the staff.  It was a whole set of dishes with beautiful lime green and brown and cream.  It really means a lot to me especially when I know that the people here do not have extra money and that they would spend it on me to make my day special.

Our 2 volunteers, Rebecca and Amanda came with really sweet cards, a coupon book for massages and hair “styling” and a new dress.  On Saturday I always do “Bible Study” for our children and many of the village kids also come.  During the prayer time, all the children were handed either flowers or a branch of greens.  After the prayer I was presented with a gift from the Ebners.  The gift was a vase made here locally.  Then all of the children lined up to give me the branches for the vase along with a sweet hug.  Then they sang Happy Birthday.  Lena helped a few of the girls to make pancakes in a press that tasted really yummy!! 

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The celebration did not stop.  That evening, the girls baked chocolate cupcakes.  So I got to make my BIG wish and blow out one candle.  It was very nice and I enjoyed the cake along with the rest of the children and volunteers.  The funniest part was when they sing “how old are you now?  How old are you now?”   Uggg…. do I really have to answer.  So I sang back, “I am blank years old now, I am blank years old now.”   I received many personal, homemade, sweet birthday cards from the children that I will read again and again.  Sweet memories from children I have grown to know and love. 

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On Sunday we took the children to the local church in the village.  It was quite a long walk but everyone managed.  There was only one part that is still water but someone had made a nice “bridge” that allowed us to cross with no problem getting wet. 

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One of our staff is one of the pastors there.  He had all the October people stand up.  So, yet again, I got enjoy that Happy Birthday song.  Thank goodness they did NOT sing “how old are you now?”!!!!!!! 

 

 

 

 

 

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God continues to teach me many things and in spite of my age, I continue to learn:)  Maybe I am slower than I used to be but I keep trying.  I am so thankful for my family in the states and here in Africa.  I am surrounded by God’s love and His Blessings are more than I could even count.