Tanzania in East Africa is known for its vast wilderness areas including the plains of Serengeti National Park (populated by the “big five” game: elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo, rhino) and Kilimanjaro National Park, home to Africa’s highest mountain. Due to its natural beauty and rich wildlife areas, tourism has become an important revenue earner for Tanzania.
Tanzania gained independence in 1963, and has experienced general political stability and national unity. Tanzania has an agricultural-based economy, with tourism and natural resource development also major contributors to the economy. Tanzania remains one of the poorest countries in the world with approximately 70% of people living below the poverty line.
Kilolo Parish in the Iringa Diocese has been our companion congregation for more than 20 years. This partnership through the St. Paul area synod is part of the Bega Kwa Bega program. In Swahili, Bega Kwa Bega means shoulder to shoulder, a phrase that describes the way in which we aspire to relate to one another- as equals and companions in ministry. The pillars of the companion relationship are: Prayer, Presence, and Projects. Through Bega Kwa Bega, King of Kings’ supports Kilolo in several ways, but especially with secondary school scholarships and an annual gift.
Scholarships: Each year, King of Kings supports around 20 students from Kilolo Parish with scholarships to further their secondary or post-secondary education.
Companion Congregation Gift: King of Kings sends an annual gift in Kilolo Parish. This gift is used to help Kilolo develop their church. It has been used for building projects, evangelism, and healthcare outreach.
Dr. Mark and Linda Jacobson have served as ELCA missionaries for more than 30 years, working to improve healthcare in Tanzania. They were instrumental in developing and building Arusha Lutheran Medical Center, a hospital in Arusha, Tanzania. King of Kings has supported Mark and Linda in their dedicated work for many years, we now walk with them as they transition toward retirement.
Daudi and Kellen Msseemmaa are ELCA missionaries and serve as Regional Representatives in East Africa. Based in Arusha, Tanzania, the Msseemmaa’s work with Lutheran churches throughout the region and nurture relationships between the ELCA and our partners. Daudi and Kellen have 3 children: Shalom, Shaddai, and Solomon.
Iringa Hope is an economic development organization based in the Iringa region of Tanzania. Through microloans, marketing, and training, they assist small scale farmers in Tanzania. King of Kings supports our companion congregation, Kilolo, to continue building and developing their Iringa Hope program throughout their community.
Dodoma Christian Medical Center is a 50-bed hospital in Central Tanzania that serves more than 100,000 patients each year. It is recognized as the best healthcare facility in the region for its high quality, compassionate medical and dental care. This is a new benevolence partner for King of Kings beginning in 2020.