Durban, KwaZulu -Natal, South Africa
First for those of you who do not know us we are Joe and Averyl Morris, we were married on January 20th, 2008. Between us we have 5 adult children I have John 31, Jennifer 29,Jeremy 26, Averyl has Christopher 22, & Lara 19.I have been a welder, worked at building houses in my fathers construction business, as one of the youngest contractors in AZ. have built and run my own HVAC contracting business for 12 years I have been involved in ministry for 17 ½ years 11 years as full time staff in Grace Chapel in Tucson AZ. a servant elder, I left there to join Alive Christian Church in Tucson where I was on the worship team. I have been a missionary in the Bay Islands Honduras for the last 6 ½ years. I am an EMT, Diving Medical Technician, Remote Duty Medical Technician and a PADI diving instructor.
Averyl was born in South Africa but at the age of 5 went to live in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) for 11 years .She then went back to South Africa until 1991 when she moved to Roatan , Honduras. Averyl has always worked in the tourist industry serving people which she really has a heart for. She started her own business in 1993 offering shore excursions to cruise ship passengers and trained 20 local island tour guides to work for her. In 2003 Averyl met Greg and Angela Ruark and became involved with the IWC church, attending the Ladies Bible study group and later on helping with the children’s ministry. Whenever Averyl went back to SA she would visit Sarepta church and help with a sewing ministry for Zulu women and this year she did 5 weeks internship on Helene working with short term teams.
We are excited to present to you what we feel is the burden and direction that God has laid on our hearts to serve him. This year we have been to South Africa twice, the first time was to meet Averyl’s family and en route we visited supporters in Germany at their request. While we were in South Africa the first time we worked with two different groups reaching into the black community that lives in the 1000 hills area. The one worked with AIDS orphans and families that are AIDS affected. We were touched and moved by what we saw there, whole generations have been wiped out leaving only the grandparents and small children behind. The need for God in their lives is so evident. They are a people without hope and we have the hope they need in Jesus.
The Church that we became involved in is Sarepta Averyl had been going there since 2005. We have a good relationship with that Church and went to their Alpha Program meetings, as observers as Averyl has been through the Alpha program herself. There is a group of refugees from different countries IE: Zimbabwe & the Congo that they are helping to get involved in Alpha as attendees and as they accept Christ and are discipled they are encouraged to become Alpha leaders, the Alpha program is an interactive introduction to Christianity. We came back to Honduras and Averyl went through her internship on Helene and she was stretched and challenged to go beyond her comfort zone, but experienced growth in the process. We needed to return to South Africa again shortly thereafter when Averyl’s daughter had a personal crisis and needed our intervention. She is now stable and working in a resort owned by her uncle in Mozambique. During that trip we got more involved with a Refugee couple working there Patrick and Christene Bilai, we were able to lead Patrick’s brother Peter to Christ, he had just arrived from Zimbabwe where he said there was no medical attention at all, and there were no medicines.
We feel that in the future there may be opportunities to minister in Zimbabwe if Mugabe (the current dictator) is deposed. At that point we would follow the refugees into Zimbabwe and bring the Gospel there. We know that medical/dental will be a huge need there when that happens and we know it is a need among the refugees now. Mostly it is a matter of not having the money as there is healthcare available in South Africa, just not Zimbabwe.
South Africa has within its borders larger numbers of neighboring nationals than are contained in the countries themselves, this amazing fact creates a nation of amazing diversity in Durban is the largest Indian population found anywhere in the world besides India itself as well as a huge Muslim population from the middle east.
It is thought that since 2000 between one and three million Zimbabweans have fled to neighboring South Africa, and form the majority of a foreign national community estimated at between one and 10 million people, most of whom are undocumented migrants. They have fled only to be persecuted and killed in xenophobic attacks, this has died down now and the government has apologized and re-established control.
It is dangerous for these refugees in S.A. as their presence, thought encouraged by the government of South Africa to come there they are not welcomed by some of the population, (one poor nation trying to help another.) The media has reported many Zimbabweans have fled to South Africa because of food shortages, post-election violence and an inflation rate unofficially estimated at 1 million percent. They are the poorest billionaires in the world.
Right now they need food and clothing and better shelter. This is an opportunity to reach out to the men and women and children. We would start with the ones in Durban and Pietermaritsburg, we would try to set up in a building near the majority of the refugees and help with food and clothing first and establish Alpha Courses as the intro, we would need a projector, and portable sound system which we can buy locally in Durban. This is Sarepta Church, Patrick Bilai’s plan for an existing outreach which we would support help and hopefully expand.
Jobs are one of the greatest needs, we think that there are woodworking jobs that some of these men can do as they are very industrious and want to work. They want to build pick-nick style tables and outdoor type furniture and sell them. There is a lumber yard that is sympathetic to the refugees that can sell them the raw lumber to build the tables; they have a covered area at one of the church member’s houses that they can use to build them. They need tools and money to get started.
We will need and will spend 4-6 months in the states trying to build support for the ministry to find a safe 2 br. rental for us to live in the suburbs of Durban. We will need a reliable internet source (est. $40.00 mo.) and have that installed or service if in the Durban area. We will have the Sarepta church hopefully help us find a place to land. We can stay with friends for a few weeks while we get a place we will need approx. $1000.00 to get in and $600 mo. We will need a used 4x4 vehicle to be able to get in and out of the 1000 hills area (approx.$18,000.00) needs to have enough seating min (4 people) and space for the food.
Recruit and train a team of people to reach the people of South Africa with the gospel of Christ.
Cooperate with local churches, orphanages, town projects, host short term missions teams.
Use every available media to promote the spread of the Gospel and to train and equip participants. Including Vineage and AMU.
Express servant hood and humility in all our interactions.
Be relational rather than project driven.
Encourage reliance on Christ, not dependence on others.
Encourage each team member to take personal responsibility to use their network for the support of the ministries that we undertake.
Ministry possibilities include:
Personal evangelism, prayer and counseling and translation.
Cooperate with local churches, orphanages, town projects, host short term missions teams.
Helping in a local orphanage, or with a local clinic.
Distributing food and clothing to local AIDS affected families.
Helping the illiterate to fill out their government forms to receive aid if available.
Helping with a computer or sewing class.
Becoming an Alpha leaders, discipleship, mentoring.
Addressing the biblical response to the AIDS issue.
Concerts/Group Evangelism teams.
Evangelism around the 2010 World Cup Soccer events.
Helping children in crisis, rape victims etc.
Home building –Christian community building
Home reparations – new roofs etc.
Assisting job creation with stateside marketing for crafts, local woodworking & sales and marketing locally.
Stateside fundraising for foreign missions.
Keys to success:
Individuals that are committed to building relationships and using opportunities to evangelize.
Teaming with the existing ministries and people already working in the fields,
Expanding ministry into new areas that are not being reached.
Training and discipling the locals and sending them out.
Getting the new believers into working in the ministry right away.
Encouraging the new believers to reach out to others the same way they have been reached.
Utilizing existing ministries relationships and building on them brings an immediate impact for the Kingdom of God
Reaching out in a culturally diverse area reaches a larger potential area of the world.
Fulfilling the great commission.
Using established working programs like Alpha saves time and effort.
Minimal amounts of capitol are spent for maximum results, avoiding the high maintenance high cost buildings, renting/borrowing facilities keeps team members relating to people and building relationships, instead of maintaining structures.
Team size and Roles:
Team ministry leader (with team building, networking and promotional skills)
Events Logistical coordinator
Alpha leadership trainers.
Home construction Coordinator
Local Churches Liaison
The Process for those wanting to be Team Leaders:
• Contact interested parties. Interview, References, Evaluate, Choose team
• Visit our existing sites to catch the vision and learn about the costs of missions’ service. Stay at least 2-3 weeks to a few months. Serve at an existing site. Glean from what others have learned.
• Join our mission training program A.M.U.
• Attend language school if necessary.
• Form team / Develop Team, Raise resources.
Advisors / Sponsors
• Pray for our ministries and staff.
• Be as involved in the process as possible.
• Going, giving, advising and training
What are the long term goals?
When and if it becomes safe to travel with the refugees into Zimbabwe Bring the Gospel into Zimbabwe, to go and see what are the needs that we can address, by going with a trained ministry team comprised of refugees that have been reached for Christ.
To take the Gospel into Zimbabwe when the refugees return and help with the repatriation encouraging them to be examples of reconciliation and forgiveness and change.
To encourage thru Christ breaking the endless cycles of retribution and vindictiveness.
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