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  • The comments and opinions expressed herein on this web site do not necessarily reflect the beliefs and point of view of Lutheran Hour Ministries. Statements are made exclusively by the author and appear as written and have not be subject to the Lutheran Hour Ministries doctrinal review process.

Preaching Christ’s Love through the Treating of Jiggers

Recently as I shared with a friend of mine about the Ministry we were involved in, I happened to mention that it included the treating of jiggers. He instantly asked, “What are jiggers?” To many people, this is something they have never heard of and may even never experience but for the case of our country, this is a plight for a section of our society.

I tried to look up the word ‘jigger’ in the English dictionary but could not find it, however from a layman’s understanding; jiggers grow when fleas (parasitic insects) grow into a human’s or other animal’s body to form numerous young ones under the skin.  These parasites feed on the victim’s blood, as they eat away the flesh on which they are living as it rots and even dries up to form a hard cote. They cause anemia, deformity due to loss of certain body parts like the toes, fingers in initial stages, but if not treated they can spread to the rest of the body parts such as buttocks, arms etc and may even result into death. People affected by jiggers are highly stigmatized in society.

Well out on our recent outreach to Gwase Kamuli we had no idea what more the Lord had prepared for the audiences whom we were soon going to meet, outside ETS and film shows.  Our mission was to equip the laymen with skills and strategies to embrace personal evangelism for the kingdom of God in their communities.

But coming face to face with the jigger situation we could not help it but feel our hearts melt away with the plight of young children who were malnourished and limping due to these parasites. The team therefore took on the mantle to touch these people in a special way, by treating their most devouring situation. We moved from home to home treating those who were infected, by washing the affected parts (which are mostly the feet and the palms) with detergent and Hydrogen peroxide and fumigating their houses with louse-killing chemicals, as directed by a Vector Control Officer from Kamuli district, who voluntarily participated in the activity.

The activity was not just a social act for the affected families, but another way in which we believe God intended to show His love to His people. In doing this exercise, the team also encouraged the affected families to take good care of their homes and bodies, as one of the things God desires of them.

The Jigger infection in Gwase was overwhelming as we beheld people, whose feet and hands have been eaten, including babies. However it was absurd to learn that some of these people believe it’s an issue to do with witchcraft and hereditary yet it’s actually a situation resulting from poor sanitation & hygiene, poverty and backwardness. Sincerely it was not an easy exercise at all as at the end of it we hardly ate but most importantly we believe God’s people felt the touch of His hand of love in their deepest need. In total over 40 people from 10 families were treated of jiggers and so far one Catherine (appears in the pictures), an elderly woman of about 60 years has been reported to have joined the Gwase congregation. When she turned up for worship this is what Catherine had to say “I experienced the Love of God as you treated our homes, and I have come to be part of you”.

 

Disclaimer:

Please be warned that the pictures you are about to see regarding this article may be quite disturbing and not pleasant to the eyes. Any inconvenience caused to the viewer shall not in any means be the responsibility of Lutheran Media Ministry Uganda.

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Reaching the Unreached

In the month of January 2013, once again the Lord provided us with another opportunity to reach out to His people with the gospel message of Jesus Christ.

An ETS workshop was conducted at Gwase Lutheran Church located in Kamuli which saw the training of 19 Lutheran laymen in evangelism and follow-up; the first of its kind in this area.

Talking to Mr. Buluba Erifazi, the Lay leader of the Gwase congregation after the workshop, he said members of his congregation were enhanced in the knowledge of God and His love, and furthermore inspired to tell others about Him. “And as a pastor, I have gained more strength to evangelize; my trust in God has increased and also the boldness to tell others about Christhe added.

The ETS training was a point of revival for the members of this congregation and as one David Mboira reported, he was inspired to draw closer to God and to forgive those who do him wrong.

It has also been reported that Gwase Lutheran church has now revived its bible study activity which had earlier died out. Members of this congregation now meet every Saturday from 2:00- 3:00pm to study the Bible.

This outreach was also blended with the ‘Jesus’ film shows which were conducted in the public arena and a Music Dance & Drama concert that was conducted at Gwase trading center. These two combined saw the proclamation of the Gospel to over 1000 people and over 631 people provided us with their names and contact details which we hope to put to use as we follow them up with the support of our commissioned volunteers to see to it that they are linked to the church.

We also hope that with the increased commitment of the ETS graduates in this locality, the impact our Ministry programs & activities shall be strengthened especially in the areas of follow up and small group ministry.

We continue to pray for the guidance of the Holy Spirit and His continued inspiration to do God’s will.

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