When Holy Trinity Church in Huddersfield set out to replace their audio-visual system last year, they also set their sights on how they might help a church rather further away.
In order to upgrade the AV system in the worship area and a smaller standalone system in the Welcome Area, the congregation needed to raise nearly £24,000. But in addition, as a church which has for more than 35 years committed to giving at least 10% of its income for mission, they considered who might benefit from the additional tithe. Holy Trinity’s Mission Support Team approached Stephen Spencer, the Leeds Diocese Tanzania Link Officer, to see if a church in our partner diocese in Mara might need AV equipment of their own which we could help fund.
As a result, Holy Trinity were put in touch with Bishop Mwita Akiri from the Diocese of Tarime in Tanzania. With his colleagues, Bishop Mwita chose three youth choirs (Manga, (pic right) Nkongore and Kitagasembe both pictured below) to be recipients of the gift, with each choir able to purchase a mixing desk and cables, a speaker and some microphones, a small power generator and a voltage regulator.
Youth choirs are at the forefront of evangelisation in Tarime where 90 per cent of the population follow the traditional religion - it includes Female Genital Mutilation
Bishop Mwita explains: “Our youth choirs in Tarime and much of Tanzania play a vital role in our Sunday worship and are a big attraction to many young people. They help us make the connections.
"And because the majority of those attending our churches are poor women, it takes them and others a long time to raise money for anything needed by the church. When a church receives a gift like the one you have sent, it gives relief to those poor women. Instead of contributing the money for music equipment, they would spend it on food or school uniform for their children or medicine for their children,” he added.
Mike Wilkins, Vicar at Holy Trinity commented, “We are reminded time and again what a faithful and generous God we serve. As our church community here at Holy Trinity have given generously to enable our worship at Holy Trinity to develop, so it has also been such a blessing to partner with our brothers and sisters in Tanzania. We are thrilled that the gift sent to Tarime is being used to assist them as they share the good news of Jesus there, and we pray it will make a difference in the lives of the individuals, communities and churches who will benefit.”
Kitagasembe choir is pictured practising on left and Nkongore are performing on the right.