Cobargo Seventh-day Adventist Church company (New South Wales) received messages of encouragement and financial support from the British Union Conference (BUC) and Newcastle Seventh-day Adventist Church (United Kingdom), following the recent devastation they experienced as a result of bushfires in early January.
The initiative began when the children’s ministries director for Newcastle church, Lynne Sesinye-Samwinga, first read about Cobargo’s devastating circumstances on Adventist News Online’s website in early January.
Mrs Sesinye-Samwinga promptly contacted Pastor Dragan Kanazir and elder Wendy Hergenhan from Cobargo church, who provided more details and photos of the burnt buildings.
Although there wasn’t much that Newcastle church could practically do—being halfway across the globe—Mrs Sesinye-Samwinga decided to record a video to encourage the victims. It includes footage of children in Sabbath school praying for their Cobargo church family and writing letters of support.
“I really wanted to teach the children in our church about mission work, so we started doing Sabbath school mission stories for the kids . . . to teach them about different parts of the world and have them reach out to others overseas who might be in need,” said Mrs Sesinye-Samwinga.
“We are going to have to pray . . . and ask God to help the people in that area so they can build their lives back. And then we will tell mummy and daddy so we can put some money in the offering,” their Sabbath school teacher said in the video.
BUC president Pastor Ian Sweeney was approached to add a recorded message to the video, and not only did so but also provided Cobargo a financial donation on behalf of the Union.
“The world has been gripped by the terrible devastation that has befell Australia with the bushfires . . .” he said. “We’d just like you to know that the BUC are lifting you up in our prayers. We have agreed to send a small donation to you to help you get back on your feet.”