Kanja is a 30 year old woman living with HIV in Kenya. She lives in one room with her HIV-positive husband, a peasant farmer. They have two daughters, a four-year old (also HIV-positive) and a ten-month-old.
Following routine testing, Kanja was found to have cervical cancer and was scheduled for a hysterectomy. Despite including insurance covering most of her costs, Kanja still had to pay an additional £110 for the operation – a sum of money she and her husband could only dream of.
Thankfully, money donated in Britain covered the shortfall.
“We need to keep Kanja alive, as a person and child of God in her own right, but also as a mother who needs to care for her two young children – one with HIV and one who, we hope, will have a future without HIV through preventative treatment,” said Dr Claire Smithson, a mission partner working as an HIV/Aids doctor at the Maua Methodist hospital in Kenya. “We need mothers like Kanja to stay healthy, bring up their children and reduce the numbers of orphans in countries like Kenya.”
The 2015 Easter Offering dedication service draws inspiration from the prophetic vision of the Tree of Life that produces leaves for healing (Revelation 22:2). All of the funds raised in the service offerings will go towards the work of the Church’s World Mission Fund, to support work with people like Kanja all over the world.
The worship resources are free to download, or can be ordered direct from Methodist Publishing here (postage and packing charges will apply). The service includes Bible passages, music and prayers. There is a slot for an address, if required, although the service can be used without one. There are also stories from partner Churches that are engaged in healing, healthcare and reconciliation around the world.
The service has been written by a small task group of Methodist Women in Britain (MWiB), led by former MWiB President, Jill Baker. “It has been exciting to work on this year’s service,” said Jill. “We have three stories of remarkable work of healing and reconciliation going on around the world, enabled through the World Mission Fund, coupled with a mixture of old and new hymns and stirring bible passages. It would be wonderful if every Methodist was able to share in this act of worship, which will also be shared through Twitter in the week after Easter.”
MWiB has also produced a series of reflections for each week in Lent, linked to the Easter Offering and each based on the image of a different tree. These can be found online here.
About the Methodist Church
The Methodist Church is one of the largest Christian churches serving Great Britain, with nearly 209,000 members and regular contact with 512,000 people. It has 5,023 churches in Great Britain, and also maintains links with other Methodist churches with a worldwide total membership of over 80 million. Its activities, both alone and with ecumenical and secular partners, are based on four aims known as Our Calling:
• To increase awareness of God’s presence and to celebrate God’s love
• To help people to grow and learn as Christians through mutual support and care
• To be a good neighbour to people in need and to challenge injustice
• To make more followers of Jesus Christ.
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With many peaceful blessings