It started with a handful of people gathered around a dining-room table in Brampton, Ontario. The Power of One group from North Bramalea United Church had a big goal—to reach beyond their city to make a difference in the world.
The group chose Église du Christ au Congo to partner with through the United Church’s Extra Measures program because it knew of the 40-year M&S partnership between our churches.
Thanks to the group’s efforts, on Good Friday in 2012 North Bramalea hosted two visitors, Sabine and Josué, from the Congolese church. Their stories of the violence and conflict in their country spurred The Power of One group to work harder in Canada to bring change to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The result was a special Sunday service in June 2013 to raise awareness about issues in that African country. People signed 500 letters to the federal government asking it to take action to stop the violence and displacement of people in eastern Congo. Hundreds also signed a United Church petition urging Canadian leaders to regulate Canadian mining companies operating overseas, including in Congo. And, perhaps hardest of all, many church folks agreed to go electronics-free for the day to raise awareness of the impact of mining in Congo for minerals that are used in smartphones and other electronic devices.
From a small beginning, an ongoing relationship has blossomed that connects a suburban United Church with sisters and brothers across the world.
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