Honors student, Wesley Racca, spends part of summer on mission trip in Kazembe, Zambia

by   |  08.29.11  |  Honors Student Achievements

This summer I was given the opportunity to go on a mission project to help an Orphanage in Kazembe, Zambia. The mission project was made available through my home church, Grace Christian Fellowship, in Odessa, Texas. Grace Christian organized the trip and the mission team. The mission project was also made possible through many generous supporters, such as the Honors College of ACU.  This mission trip was meaningful to me as I was able to see the rewards of my labor and develop many new relationships.

This mission trip had many different purposes; however, all of these were for the glory of God and to further His Kingdom. For starters, we went to the orphanage to rebuild and renovate some problem areas in the orphanage. For example, half of the external fence needed to be rebuilt for protection from thieves and wild animals, and to keep the children from wandering off into the bush. While we were there we made some significant progress to the completion of this fence. We also rewired the electrical boxes, fuses, wiring, and security lights all around the property for the comfort and protection of the orphanage and the missionary family. Secondly, a part of our team was responsible for leading a Vacation Bible school for the children from the local churches. For three days we held services twice a day in order to teach the love of Christ and bible stories to as many local children as we could. Thirdly, the team was able to hold a two-day school for the local ministers. During those two days, our primary focus was to teach them how to live differently and stand out as Christians in the world. They were very open to our teaching and listened well to our advice. Finally, the team and I, as representatives of the church, were to see the work that our sent missionary, Thomas Morrow, has been doing in the lives of orphans and the community of Kazembe.

While I was in Kazembe, I developed many strong bonds with several of the workers, the orphans, the villagers, and the Morrow family. One worker in particular, Amerie, became a good friend of mine. Amerie could not speak much English, but I was able to communicate with him through the small amount of French I learned in high school.  Amerie was my right hand man through all of the work we did on the fence and my main interpreter to the culture of the people.

Between the relationships that I built and the much needed work that exists in the country, I realized that I was happy to be there and doing the mission work that I did. Because of this I feel a strong desire to go back and see my friends again—to work some more in the community of Kazembe.