- Written by Mark and Megan Mantey Mark and Megan Mantey
- Created: March 27 2020 March 27 2020
Currently we are all living with many unknowns. Our daily routines have changed drastically as people throughout the world are told to shelter in place and limit going out so we can “flatten the curve.” Schools and churches quickly modified teaching and worship. Family life has also shifted, where parents have even more roles in an already chaotic schedule. We know this all too well.
So, what do we do? As Christians, we turn to the Lord. We seek His will and find great hope in His promises. Yes, there are indeed changes, chaos and turmoil in the world right now. Yet, this is such an opportunity to continue to find hope in the Lord and share His great love and mercy with others. It’s a time of connection and community, even in the midst of social distancing.
Psalm 130:5–7 state, “I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope … O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love.” This is an important message to share with our community. Many churches, in the midst of recent changes, have continued to share this message on Sunday via live streaming. Our own eastern and southern Africa LCMS missionaries have been meeting this way for daily devotions and weekly worship via Zoom. It does indeed offer great encouragement and hope in Christ Jesus.
The Lutheran Church of Uganda (LCU) is also navigating these recent changes. Radio programming, phone calls and individual visits have been implemented as a way to share the love of Christ with others. The word of the Lord encourages one another and continues to be preached throughout all parts of Uganda! Yes, there are changes, but God is faithful. The love of Christ and his redemptive message are shared. The Holy Spirit continues to guide, lead, and encourage His people. Our hope remains in the Lord.
In mid-March the Ugandan government put preventative measures in place to help with health and safety. These included temporarily pausing schools and public worship. Similar to the US, the LCU pastors and LTCU faculty and staff had to make quick and decisive actions that would best support the health and well-being of the people, as well as continue to further the work of the Lord.
At the seminary, we used this opportunity to share facts and preventative measures about Covid-19 from the CDC and the Ugandan Ministry of Health, knowing that the students are leaders in their communities and congregations. This allows the seminary students to teach others correct information and ensure that even the most rural communities can learn best practices for preventative care and treatment. This is important because the rural populations do not always receive information right away.
The Lord’s work continues! We safely work from our home in Jinja, Uganda. Yet, we are still able to daily liaise with the LCU. Mark meets regularly with the church and seminary leaders as the seminary still needs to be maintained and developed during this temporary break. He also continues to work on long-term fiscal planning with the seminary leaders.
Megan has been working ahead on curriculum, grading papers and calling students to maintain relationships and encourage one another. Megan also serves as a mental health counselor for other missionaries and expatriates in Jinja, and continues to do that via the Internet. We praise God for the unique opportunities to serve and praise Him in Jesus’ name!
Mark and Megan Mantey serve the Lord through The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod as career missionaries in Uganda. Mark serves as the project manager for the seminary, and Megan is the seminary’s instructor of Christian education and counseling. You can follow their work at www.facebook.com/MissionMindedManteys.