Good News of Great Joy

“Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:11-12) The story of the first Christmas is being told to 280 children gathered for CFCM’s Christmas outreach to children in Phalombe. Children in Malawi have very different lives and needs from children in the UK, but the need of a Saviour is universal. As well as bringing gifts, the Christmas message was front and centre of CFCM’s event.

The children gathered for a time of fun and games before the sun got too hot. Then they sat down in the shade of the trees to hear God’s Word, to sing and to pray.

Elevate and Joseph were helped by the local CFCM volunteer trainers and some of the schoolteachers from the school where they gathered. After Joseph told the story of the first Christmas, Elevate used the Wordless Book to explain the Gospel, and teach the children how they should live as children of God.

For most of these children, Christmas Day will be no different from any other day of the year, except that there might be chicken for dinner – but maybe not, times are very hard now. There will certainly be no treats or presents. So the small gifts that CFCM brought – snacks, a drink carton, a notebook, a pencil and a bar of soap – brought great excitement and joy. This was a wonderful Christmas treat for every child and will help them to remember the lesson of God’s love and provision for them in sending a Saviour.

The team brought with them some of the children’s clothes that have been donated or made by supporters in the UK. The schoolteachers who were helping had the insight to know which children were from the most deprived families, and these children also received an item of clothing.

The schoolteachers were very interested in seeing what was happening and hearing the Christmas message taught to the children. They asked CFCM to start a Bible club in their school. The team were immediately able to introduce them to one of the CFCM volunteer trainers who will run a club for them as soon as the new term starts.

Before heading back to Blantyre, Joseph and Elevate visited the home of two young boys from another Bible club. CFCM has been helping Chifundo (which means mercy) and Chitsazo (which means example) to attend school by paying their contribution to the School Fund, a requirement at primary schools in this area. It is a small amount, but an impossible fee for their sister to pay – both of their parents are dead. The little family are pictured here with their Bible club leader, Chipoya. As well as giving them gifts including a sack of maize, Elevate and Joseph shared God’s Word and prayed for the family. They also encouraged the boys to attend school regularly. Chifundo and Chitsazo are intelligent boys, but without parents to influence and encourage them, they need others to help them see the importance of their education.

Praise God for the good news of great joy has gone out to the children of Phalombe through CFCM this Christmas. Let’s pray that the Christmas message will impact the lives of all those children who heard it. Praise God for all those involved in the Phalombe CFCM Bible clubs throughout the year and ask God’s blessing on them this Christmas. Thank God for his provision enabling CFCM to give gifts that brought great joy to the children.

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