Bethesda~Shighatini Ministry

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The 2017 Sunday School Coins for Clothes Initiative has wrapped up, and Bethesda was able to send $1,550 to Shighatini for school uniform materials and school supplies! Click below to listen to the Dedication and Blessing of the Shighatini funds, from May 21.

Thank you for your generosity, and God bless the primary school children of Shighatini.

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EXCITING NEWS! The Shighatini Library has created this awesome new website, to share their mission, progress and how YOU can connect! Congratulations, and we look forward to keeping even better connected with Shighatini!

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In October 2000, the Bethesda Lutheran Church Council approved a formal partnership with the Shighatini Lutheran Parish in the Pare Diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania (ELCT), and the covenant between the two congregations was signed in August 2003. Bethesda was one of the first congregations in the Southeastern Iowa Synod to pair up with an ELCT congregation.

The purpose of the Bethesda-Shighatini covenant is to:

Strengthen one another for life and mission within the body of Christ
Offer the privilege of participating in the life of another church through prayer, study, communication, and exchange
Open our eyes to the global challenge that Christ offers us today and us to deepen our commitment and discipleship.

More about Shighatini, our companion congregation:

Tanzania is on the east coast of Africa, bordered by Kenya and Uganda on the north; Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo on the west; and the Indian Ocean to the east. The village of Shighatini is located in the hills high up in the Pare Mountains of northern Tanzania, not far from the majestic Mt. Kilimanjaro.

Shighatini has 3,250 members, although many no longer live in the area. Most members are subsistence farmers, who are greatly affected by varying levels of rainfall on the drier western slopes of the North Pare Mountains. About one-third of the parishioners provide in-kind offerings of beans, chickens, and sugar cane that are sold in an auction considered part of the Sunday worship service. The church operates a secondary school and a health clinic.