A cholera outbreak threatens Zambia.

By March 3, 2004

Zambia (MNN)–The cholera outbreak began in November last year and has had impact on many agencies, humanitarian and mission groups, included.

At its peak, the Minister of Health declared Lusaka and Mpulungu (m-poo-loog-oo) infected areas. Reports show more than 110 people have died from the disease and a further 2,100 people have been infected.

According to Grace Ministries International, their Lusaka Bible School campus was not immune. GMI’s Sam Vinton. “We got word that they had this cholera epidemic, and there was even a matter of closing down certain things. I think that one of the Bible School student’s wives got very sick.” A construction worker also succumbed to the disease. The school suspended classes in the last week of February. This week was a concern because, Vinton says, “We have a team going out there from Seattle this coming week. There were questions what to do about that.”
The good news, Vinton says, is that quarantines appear to have been lifted in their ministry area. That means the short-term mission teams should arrive on schedule. “We have a building we’ve purchased right in the middle of town that we’re converting into a bookstore. This team that is going is going to be involved in doing that.”

As the epidemic was serious enough to have killed over a hundred and sickened thousands, Vinton says, “We’re thankful, at least as it stands right now, things are such that they will be going, and the people who have been ill, none of them have died.”

The ministry in Zambia was started in 1994 through the outreach of the Grace Church in Tanzania and their evangelism department.

In 1996, after reaching out and establishing a preaching point, the Grace Church in Tanzania, in partnership with Grace Ministries International, sent a missionary team of two couples, Kennedy and Sophia Simutowe and Daniel and Tina Moyer, to start the new work.

Since that time, the Lord has blessed the ministry and Zambia has become a base of operations to reach out into the various countries around the southern region.

The vision of the Grace Church in Zambia is to start an outreach in a new country every year. As of September 2002, there are graduates of the Zambia Grace Bible Institute in Malawi, Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
There have been 17 preaching points and four churches established in Zambia, three preaching points in Zimbabwe, and two preaching points and one church in Malawi.

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