WINGS FOR WIDOWS’ WELFARE
Revelation 12:11 says: “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; …”. When we tell testimonies of the Lord God’s power and saving grace on our lives, the devil slinks away tail between legs. So, let us share our amazing stories of God’s love in action and shame the evil one.
We look forward to reading your own story of faith in the coming weeks. Your well-written story should be about 1000 words. Send your story to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Selected stories will be compiled into an anthology of stories of faith.
Here is today’s story of faith told written by Dorcas Dengu. Enjoy! Look out for the next story of faith next week.
WINGS FOR WIDOWS’ WELFARE
My church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church (ELCZ) in Bulawayo has five parishes. My parish is the Bulawayo North Parish that comprises of four congregations; Mzilikazi, Queens Park, Rosebank and Siphikeni. There are 35 widows in my parish whose ages range from 50 to 109. On 14 April 2020, our Bishop in ELCZ, Dr Ambrose Moyo, donated small groceries to 19 Widows in the Bulawayo North Parish. This was part of assistance to needy people during the Covid-19 period where a lot of vulnerable people go without food if unassisted, and the church currently does not have the resources to assist all the needy people in the nation. The Bishop out of compassion felt a need to give. He sent me a message as the Chairperson of the widows’ group in our church. The small hamper consisted of 10 kg roller meal, 2 litres cooking oil, 50g dried fish. I had to be the wings for the widows’ welfare. I collected the parcels from a shop in the city centre and decided to distribute to widows in Mzilikazi and Queens Park right away, though dark clouds were brewing in the sky. The journey to the various homes involved passing through police roadblocks because of the ‘Lockdown’ statutory instrument put in place from 30 March 2020, later extended to 3 May 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. During that period, people are expected to stay at home and only move to go to the hospital, to pharmacies or to buy groceries in nearby shops. To move to another suburb requires a police clearance letter or a alid or emergency document with a convincing reason for movement. Otherwise one incurs a fine. One should travel alone in a car, wear a mask and have the required documentation. I prayed that God would make a way for me before I started out.
“My Father God, this is your work. The widows are your children Lord.
You do not want them to starve. Bless the hands of your man, the Bishop. May
these deliveries be made safely and without hustle in Jesus’ name!”
On my first roadblock, I was asked why I was carrying so much mealie-
meal and I told them it was a donation to widows by our Bishop.
“Where are the said widows?”
“There are twelve widows in Mzilikazi and at Queens Park.”
I arrived at Gogo (Grandma) Hove’s home, half a kilometre from the road-block. She is 75 years old. When I knocked at her door, I had offloaded her parcel of 10kg roller meal, 2 litres cooking oil and 50g dried fish. She opened the door with a big smile and said, “Titambire!” meaning, “We receive!” as she took the parcels. I greeted her and told her I was in a hurry as it was about to rain. I told her the parcels were from Bishop Moyo and his wife. She would not stop clapping her hands in gratitude. She promised to send a thank you message to the Bishop.
The next point of call was four kilometres away. This was at Gogo nakaNjabulo
who is 78 years old. On arrival I rang the bell. From inside the house she
“Ngubani?” (Who is it?) while peeping from her lounge window. I said,
“Please open Gogo! I am in a hurry!” She realised it was me and she came out
of the house with her three-year old granddaughter. I had already placed her
parcel by the side of her green security gate.
“Ah, what have you brought us my daughter? How did you know we had
no mealie-meal? Awu! (Wow!) cooking oil as well! We shall survive!” she said
beaming. Gogo naNjabulo was so happy. The granddaughter grabbed the packet
of dried fish and ran into the house, thinking it was a packet of sweets. I told
Gogo the parcel was from Bishop and Mrs Moyo.
“O bless their hearts! They think of us! Please convey to them our hearty
gratitude!” she said her face still shining with happiness.
I left to visit the next lady who stays about a kilometre away from Gogo
naNjabulo. This is nakaCynthia who is 50 years old. On arrival, I remembered I
had sanitiser, so I sanitised my hand and rang the bell at her gate. She came out
of the house running and opened the small gate with this amazing smile on her
face. She collected her parcel saying,
“Thank you so much! God is so good! I had run out of mealie-meal, but
when I thought of the long queues at Pick n Pay … Ugh!” she said in a sing-
song voice, and she was almost dancing. I told her the parcel was from the
Bishop’s family. She was so appreciative. She promised to send a message of
gratitude by WhatsApp. The clouds were menacing and threatening to release
the rain any moment, so I had to rush off.
I drove for four kilometres to Gogo Chakarisa who is 109 years old. She
is a God-fearing old lady, very alert and with a sharp memory. I rang the bell at
her gate. The vicious dogs barked at me and her elder son-in-law came to open
the gate. I drove into the yard and off loaded Gogo’s parcel. The son received it
and took it straight to her where she was seated in the lounge watching a
Zimbabwe TV programme. Before she greeted me, she sang a Shona
thanksgiving hymn, “Ongai Ongai Wedenga She,” (We thank Thee our God in
Heaven), then she prayed. She thanked God for sending a messenger to her with
what she needed most.
“… This messenger did not know what I needed my Lord, but you knew!
Thank you, my God. Amen!”
She then greeted me, and I told her my mission. I had not shaken her
hand and I stood two metres away from her. She quickly said, “Oh but I heard
on TV that we can use our elbows and stand one metre away from each other.” I
laughed giving her elbow a nudge. She was so happy, and she said, “You
always remember me when I need something most.” I repeated this time the
parcel had come from Bishop and Mrs Moyo. In excitement, her face looked
like that of a 65 or 70-year old. She has few wrinkles. Gogo Chakarisa wanted
to chat but I had other ladies to visit at Queens Park. She said profusely,
“Please thank the Bishop. Tell him, ‘Tinotenda zvikurusa!’ ” (We are
I then visited Gogo Nongera who is 85 years old. That was five
kilometres from Gogo Chakarisa, and it was then drizzling. I knocked at her
door, but I could not offload the parcel as it was raining, and I had no umbrella.
I asked her grandson to collect the parcel from the car. She was happy and said,
“God is amazing! We failed to get the cheap mealie-meal yesterday. God
is an amazing Provider always.” When she heard the parcels were from Bishop
Moyo she said, “O, bless them! They always think of us in times of need!” She
and grandson were so happy. She said she would message the Bishop in the
The next point of call was Ms Sipho Maseko, a 55-year old widow who
lives two kilometres from Gogo Nongera. She was outside her gate with a desk
from which she was selling some confectionery. After stopping, I offloaded two
parcels, one for her and the other for Gogo Chikwira, 68 years old, and who
lives not far from the Masekos. I told her I was in a hurry and was visiting four
other Gogos before sunset.
“O I am so thankful! I was just trying to sell a few things so I may get
enough money to buy mealie-meal. We had run out of mealie-meal.” She
requested the Bishop’s number so they would express their gratitude. From
Masekos I proceeded to Queens Park, five kilometres away. I passed through
the second roadblock. The Policeman asked for my driver’s licence and I
showed it. He asked me where I was going. I explained and he let me proceed. I
visited Gogo Betty Dube who is 88 years old. Her gate was wide open, so I just
drove in. The rain had just stopped, and her door was open. She exclaimed,
“Today you have remembered me dear daughter!” Gogo Dube has
experienced many bereavements, in a period of ten years, but she has remained
strong because of her faith in God. I brought the groceries to her and told her
they were from Bishop Moyo. She was almost in tears.
“Really! From Bishop Moyo and Mama, honestly! They have not
forgotten me! What amazing love! May God bless them.” She was quiet for a
moment, then said, “You too! I am grateful that you were sent to me!” I did not
linger as I had to visit Gogo Moyo who is 95 years old. She lives three
kilometres from Gogo Dube with her grand-daughter and great-grand-child. I
was not able to see her, but I left her parcel with that of Gogo MaNkomo, who
is 80 years old. They were all very thankful.
My last visit was to Gogo Gora, who is 68 years old and lives four
kilometres from Gogo MaNkomo. When I arrived, she was making a fire
outside soon after the rain stopped. The ground was wet. I asked her why she
was making the fire. She said the electricity had gone and she wanted to prepare
supper, but her mealie-meal was inadequate. She had slaughtered a chicken and
was dressing it. I asked one of the children to collect her parcel, I told her the
parcel is from Bishop Moyo and his wife.
“How did he know I was running short of these things? Is he a prophet?”
She was so happy, her face literally lit up. She was so thankful and expressed it
from the bottom of her heart. She asked me to thank the givers on her behalf as
her phone was not functioning. It was about 1630 hours and I was feeling
exhausted by then. I told her I could not stay long as I had been delivering
parcels from 1300 hours that afternoon.
These were interesting experiences for me that show the grace of God.
When I returned home, passing through the two check points, the police just
waived me on after asking my next destination, which was home. The feeling of
exhaustion vanished when I realised that the work of God for the day had been
accomplished and that it had left God’s children smiling. I said a silent prayer
also for Bishop Moyo and Mrs Moyo for blessing the needy widows. I was
content to have been the wings for the widows’ welfare.
Dorcas Dengu has been widowed since 1995. She is the Administrator in the
Department of Admissions and Students Records at the National University of
Science and Technology (NUST), in Bulawayo.