Bringing a vision to life

About 20 years ago, the Makutano Corps in the Kenya East Territory had a vision to construct a chapel suitable for worship. Over the last two decades, a small yet determined group of soldiers and leaders contributed what they could, hoping to see their corps built. Recently, with a Central Territory Global Mission Team coming alongside them, their vision became a reality, and they celebrated God’s faithfulness.

Before the new building, the corps held holiness meetings and other programs in a small barn-like structure as they raised funds to construct a larger and more appropriate building. This was a struggle since most of the region’s residents are farmers who can barely produce enough to sustain themselves and their families due to the climate, the scarcity of water and frequent droughts. Though a foundation was laid for the new chapel, progress halted due to these economic circumstances beyond their control. However, the people in Makutano are resilient, strong and devoted to their faith in God and their corps.

Supporting our territory’s Partner in Mission, the Kenya East Territory, the GMT spent five days assisting with tasks such as sanding, cementing, priming and painting walls, installing windows, helping with laying bricks for a new office addition and front patio area and physically moving supplies. A local construction company installed a new tile floor and completed the exterior of the building to comply with the national building code in Kenya.

Upon completion, soldiers, local officers, village members, divisional and territorial leaders and GMT members gathered to worship and celebrate in the new chapel. The chapel serves as a beautiful example of the partnership and relationship between the USA Central and Kenya East territories.

The Kenya East GMT was composed of soldiers and officers from various locations in the Central Territory including Viki Payton — Territorial Headquarters (THQ) as team leader, Major Brian Burkett — Kansas & Western Missouri Division (KWM) as project manager, Laura Augenstein — Great Lakes Division (GLD), Major Katherine Clausell — THQ, Rachel Gillum — KWM, Captain Robyn Hubbard — Indiana Division, Angelica Lara — KWM, Major Daniel Paredes — North & Central Illinois Division, Mallory Soffran — GLD, and Lt. Samantha Tamayo — Adult Rehabilitation Centers Command.

During their 10 days in the Kenya East Territory, the team was hosted by Captain Isaac Kyale, Kenya East mission support officer. In addition to working on the Makutano Corps, they had the opportunity to visit other locations including the Kenya East THQ, Officer Training College, Thika Citadel, Yatta DHQ, Variety Village Training Centre and Joytown Special School, both for the physically challenged.

Major Brian described the work as “a church at its best” and noted it was impressive to see how much was accomplished in such a short time. Despite language barriers and cultural differences, everyone was united as co-laborers in a shared mission.

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