As you may be aware, True Vineyard Ministries is in a period of great transition. We are expectant of all God will do in the coming months to further His work stateside, in Rwanda, and across Africa. Thank you in advance for reading what is ahead for our organization as we seek to partner with you to further His Kingdom in Africa.
In Rwanda, the rainy season has just ended. We are currently in the last phase of construction for our new facility, being built on land we purchased in June 2008. We expect construction of our new facility, called Gihunga Center, “meaning to cultivate”, to be completed by the beginning of the next rainy season, which begins in September. The new center, complete with wool washing stations and gazebos will be the new worksite for the 44 widows we serve. Our ability to help more widows overcome extreme poverty is being directly impacted by the limited workspace at our current office. Located in a government-designed neighborhood for widows and orphan-headed households, the new site is prime real estate for hiring more women who have been made vulnerable by HIV, genocide, and subsequent civil wars.
At home, our fair-trade boutique, Vineyard Marketplace, is also in transition. We began our move from its original location in May with big plans on the horizon for August.
The marketplace has become a very important branch of our ministry, easily supporting over 1,000 artisans in eleven African nations. Impacting organizations that are comprised of mostly single mothers, Vineyard Marketplace has become the source by which these artisans are paid fairly for their incredible craftsmanship. This allows for fair wages so these artisans can feed their families, and in most cases, educate their children.
Recently, we came to the realization that the demands of our orders were too much for a cooperative of women that make our silk scarves in Central Madagascar. Through our conversations with their director, we learned some of the embroidery work was being outsourced to women in a local prison. These women can now be paid and take care of their children on the “outside”. God is revealing how much He cares about all of these groups and how He is using us to further the Gospel in places we would have never dreamed.
In preparation for the opening of our new store, we are expecting our sales to increase dramatically. Therefore, we prayerfully decided to ship a container of new product from Kenya to the Port of Houston in early August. This 20-foot container will be full of fairly traded goods representing organizations in Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Madagascar.
Without our store fully functioning for the next eight weeks, it will be a challenge to raise the funds needed to complete construction and ship our container of product. Therefore, I am humbly asking for you to pray for us and consider a financial contribution to True Vineyard Ministries, which will help us through this exciting transitional time. A gift of any amount is greatly appreciated and can be given online at truevineyard.org or mailed to our new mailing address, below.
True Vineyard Ministries, Inc.
P.O. Box 1962
San Marcos, TX 78667
On Friday, August 21 at 6:00 PM, please join me at our brand new store behind Centerpoint Station and across IH 35 from the outlet malls, in San Marcos. God’s fingerprints have been all over our journey to this new location and I look forward to sharing the story at this private time of blessing before our Grand Opening at 9:00 AM on August 22.