To be read on Sabbath, March 27, 2004
The Special Sabbath School Offering will be gathered Sabbath, April 3, 2004
“We are fast approaching the end. The printing and circulation of the books and papers that contain the truth for this time are to be our work.” – Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8, p. 89.
“The world is to receive the light of truth through an evangelizing ministry of the word in our books and periodicals.” – Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 61.
Dear brothers and sisters and all those scattered around the world, who love the Reformation truth. In the name of the Lord, we would like to share with you the progress of the work of Reformation in the East African region, which is comprised of the following countries: Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, and Burundi. By the grace of God, the wonderful message of Reformation reached this region in the early 1970’s and was welcomed with great enthusiasm. As more souls were won to the truth, a great demand for Swahili language publications emerged, Swahili being the major official language spoken by the majority of our members and interested souls in Tanzania and surrounding regions, including the Democratic Republic of Congo. There are about 6,200 members whose official language is Swahili but most of the publications within the union are in the English language, which can only be read by a small minority of educated members. Members, interested souls, and canvassers distributing literature urgently need publications in the Swahili language. In our bid to reach the neighborhood and the public at large, we intend to establish and promote the canvassing work in the whole region. The inspired pen writes: “Our publications have a most sacred work to do in making clear, simple, and plain the spiritual basis of our faith. Everywhere the people are taking sides; all are ranging themselves either under the banner of truth and righteousness or under the banner of the apostate powers that are contending for the supremacy. At this time, God’s message to the world is to be given with such prominence and power that the people will be brought face to face, mind to mind, heart to heart with truth. “ – Testimonies for the Church, vol. 7,p. 150.
“Our publications should go everywhere. Let them be issued in many languages.” – Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 62.
We urgently need a printing house equipped with a printing press and other facilities to publish literature in the Swahili language. The General Conference Committee in different sessions agreed to establish the printing facilities in Tanzania where standard Swahili is spoken. The initial plan and preparations have already been laid and are only awaiting funds for purchasing the premises, machinery, and other equipment. We also have the necessary manpower to direct the work. It is our objective to make this project self-supporting; after the project has been established it can generate income to sustain itself. We therefore appeal to you for your generous assistance through contributions to advance this work. “But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:20, 21. “Those who sow in tears, shall reap in joy. He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.” Psalm 126:5, 6. All brethren in this region extend their sincere thanks for your understanding of their needs.
May the Lord bless you all.
East African Regional Representative