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".


Christmas At Zion Village


After transporting everyone back to Zion from the holiday in January, we celebrated Christmas with a
special Christmas message and with gifts. It was a special time since Lisa and Pastor Craig (Senior Pastor of Mt. Zion UMC – the founding church) was here. It was not Santa but it was gifts from sponsors and people who care in the states.

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Thank you to all who made Christmas extra special this year for our children.
God bless you and keep you in HIS care!

What a blessing also that God would provide enough that we can give to others. We took a Christmas
message and food to 5 villages and asked the chiefs to pass it on to the rest. We take children so they can learn that giving is better that receiving. Teaching the young ones is better than not teaching
– culture, Jesus, giving…

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Luke 2:10-11 The  angel said to them, “Do not be afraid.  I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people.  Today… a Savior has been born to you, He is Christ the Lord.”

Isaiah 9:6-7 For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 

Christmas Holiday for the children

There were 8 children that remained here at Zion for the holiday month because they are either very young babies or 3 older ones that did not have a place to go. It was a time that we could spend one on one with them and with the little ones, they came every day to our house to watch a video, play with toys, have a tea party or go to the playground.

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While children are on holiday we found a special person to look after the little ones and we had a 2 day
Spiritual retreat for staff. During this awesome time we pray together, some give testimonies, we have speakers and team building activities.  The theme for December was LIGHT.  At this time we also celebrate our staff with special breakfast and lunch and gifts.  We also baked about 600 Christmas cookies in my small oven sine the one in the children’s home is not working. 

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As 2014 ends, may God be your hiding place; may He protect you from trouble, and may He incline your spiritual ears to listen carefully while He surrounds you with joyful songs of deliverance.  May the Lord break each evil bond that enslaves you and shine His healing light on your face.  AMEN!

Christmas at Mafuta Village

Isaiah 9:6 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 

Mafuta is a place where every week Zion provides food that some volunteer women cook for orphans.  About 140 children come to eat at break from the school that is nearby plus there is a preschool there where 2 of the volunteers teach 40-50 children.  Can you imagine 40-50 preschoolers in one small room and to teach them??  That is the patience from God and the strength from God!  Some of these children might not get another meal for the day. 

So at Christmas we like to share God’s love by telling the Christmas story, providing “special” foods for a feast, singing festive songs, prayer and delivering gifts. 

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This year was very special.  We used to live in a neighborhood with many friends – special friends.  One family has a 10 year old girl, Olivia.  She decided to give all of her stuffed animals to the children in Africa who have less than her.  God’s love from a child coming all the way around the world – So Sweet, So Special.   WE brought 4 of our youngest ones (one set of 2 year old twins, one 4 year old and one 9) so they could play with new children, be outside of Zion in a different village and hand out the special stuffed animal gifts.  Well, it was a tough lesson to learn that you cannot keep everything that is cute and nice but sometimes you must give to others.  They really did a great job, but we could see that some of the animals they really wanted to hang on too! 

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We thank God for His continuous gift of love without any expectation of something in return.  Just like this young girl, Olivia, gave from the heart with no expectation of something in return.  Thank you God for always providing just what we need (like exactly the right number of gifts for the Mafuta children) and to Lisa and Chris Kelley and their daughter, Olivia, for sending the wonderful stuffed animals all the way to Africa so that many children could receive something special for Christmas this year!!!!

Back home in the village

After 3 months state side to have surgery, go to a family funeral and visit supporting churches as well as new possible supporting churches, visit friends, our home team and our families, we are home at Zion Village.  With so much excitement we were not disappointed.  We were greeted with hugs and hugs and kisses and non stop chatter from the children and the staff.  God has blessed us with so many beautiful people who have now captured our hearts and we are happy to call them family! 

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Reflections after 4 years at Zion Village

Psalm 57:2  I call to God Most High, to God who fulfills His purpose for me. 

After serving Christ at Children of Zion Village, Namibia Africa, for four years, we still say that there is not a day that we would call “just another day.”  Every day has something new, some kind of opportunity or challenge (depending on our attitude about it), dirt and sand, items breaking, many blessings, beautiful sunsets, smiling children, crying children, sickness, healing, songs, visitors, singing and dancing, animals, bumpy sometimes flooding roads, slippery roads, spiders, bugs, termites, snakes, someone knocking at our door at any time of the day and night, many prayers and HOPE, the HOPE that only GOD can Give

Through your prayer and financial support and with God's guidance, here are a few of the updates that have been achieved since 2010:

5 babies have been placed at Zion

1 child has been adopted by a local national couple

1 young adult is finishing her first year of college

2 young adults are planning to attend college next year

5 learners have graduated from secondary school

26 learners attend 4 different secondary schools

7 children have been reunited with family

10 children have been discharged

7 boys are residents of the Genesis house. We are planning to build additional single family homes to continue this model

The staff included 28 local nationals (teachers, inside workers and outside workers).

30  come from the nearby village for Saturday afternoon bible study

105 are enrolled in the Children of Zion Village primary school, 85 come from town and pay tuition

The Ebners arrived in 2013 as missionary partners from The Mission Society

Donations are being received from the business community and individuals

Discipleship activities include the staff and members of the local community as well a 2 Spiritual Retreats for staff. 

Working toward increased self-sufficiency to include: school tuition, sales of garden produce and trailer rentals

James 4:8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.                                           If you push against the pace of grace you will loose the mysterious grace and joy that God has for you.  So many times we have tried to take control because it seems God is not listening or at least not answering.  It seems that we might miss something if we don’t have an immediate answer.  But with God it is just the opposite.  God is never late and His timing is always perfect, even, if it is the hour or the day before we need it.  We don’t have a problem having faith in the darkness of night because we have faith knowing that the dawn will always come. We must have faith in the same way, through the difficult times, knowing that God will get us through the storm to the rainbow. It is faith from something, through something to something that is much more glorious.  No matter how fierce the storm, God is at work. Life is a mystery to be lived, not a problem to be solved.


In what appears to be bleak and dark can be the most incredible outcome of the mystery.  At some point you will be able to say “Oh Happy Night!!”  This is because the most beautiful, most glorious dawn has come. 


If we are in too much of a rush and push against the pace of grace, and if we are not following the guidance of God, there will be no long lasting fruit and you will collapse from burn out.  When we take matters into our own hands rather than waiting for God to work in His time, disaster follows. Burn out in ministry, burn out in joy, burn out in fun, burn out in life. Do not run ahead of God today – though He is not early, He is NEVER late!

Prayer is the glue that holds everything together.  We have learned that we don’t go anywhere or say anything out loud before praying.  Otherwise we might be making decisions on our own and not with God’s lead.  Sometimes it is hard to “put people off” but without God’s wisdom, we cannot be confident of the outcome.  Breath is to the body as prayer is to the Spirit. And we all know that when our breath stops, our life stops.  When prayer stops, the Spirit is not present.

Psalm 139:9-10  If I live at the eastern horizon or settle at the western limits, even there Your hand will lead me; Your right hand will hold on to me.                                   God’s call is not over 2 or 4 or 10 years.  It is over a lifetime.  Just like we are to be teachers and learners all the days of our lives.  We all need godly examples and we all need to be spiritually fed and we all need to make disciples.  It is over a lifetime. 

Believe on God’s Word and expect peace and joy.  By being positive and believing the best of everybody, we release peace and joy in our lives.  We get what we believe and what we think.  People may forget what you said and what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.  Spend quality time with others and encourage them.  Listen with interest.  God gave us two ears and only one mouth.  So, should we not be twice as swift to listen and learn?  Be gentle, patient and loving to each person you meet.

The thing that makes God’s Grace so amazing is that it is both completely undeserved and completely free.  His grace is given to us because of His great love for us.  Rather than focusing our attention on ourselves, the grace we receive should cause us to glorify and praise Him. 

There are disappointments everywhere in the world but it is how you deal with it.  Trusting God completely and believing that His plan is infinitely better for you than your own will prevent you from being disappointed with God.  Run to God. The ONLY One Who can help you and truly comfort you in your time of pain.  Dr. Tom Malone said, “When God is going to do something wonderful, He starts with the difficult.  When God is going to do something miraculous, He starts with the impossible.” 

We used to think that we would never want to repeat the first 3 years at Children of Zion Village – probably the hardest days of our lives.  BUT, now we are convinced that these were the BEST days of our lives because we were drawn closest to God and our faith grew so strong and our prayers and appreciation were/ are so different.  Why?  God’s Grace and promised Faithfulness!!  This is God’s work.  It is NOT US!  We could never do this work without HIM!!!  Thank you God!!!!!


Romans 15:13 May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing (through the experience of your faith) that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing with hope.

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Psalm 121:1, 2, 7, 8  I lift up my eyes to the hills – where doth my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.  The Lord will keep you from all harm – He will watch over your life: the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore!


We thank God for YOU!!!  We thank Him that He has touched your heart to partner with us in His Mission in Namibia.  WE cannot be here without your prayers, support and encouragement. 

Philippians 1:3-6 I thank my God every time I remember you.  In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.