Uganda NOW Outreach: Brent Messimer

Brent Messimer is the founder and director of Rescue Innocence, the topic of last week’s mission post on ESI. Brent is also the previous Director of Evangelism for Uganda NOW Outreach and continues to serve them as a volunteer. The Crossing supports his work as a missionary serving in these interrelated ministries. He provides this guest post to give us an idea of the ministry in Uganda:

A prescription for the perfect mission week serving in Uganda:

2 excited volunteers [Allen & Sue] and a [soon to be former] Uganda NOW Outreach director (me), two villages to work in (Makindu and Busagazi), 300 toothbrushes for the kids, over $1000 of donated stationary, around $500 makeup products, $300 worth of soccer balls, small goals, footballs, and Frisbee’s for the sports ministry, rice and meat (the first time this year our kids ate meat), and a lot of hours preparing lessons and sermons.
Allen N and Sue A did an amazing job! Allen spent time each day teaching and working with the kids in our schools while Sue taught the ladies in the villages and I preached. We learned that Frisbee’s are the new thing in Uganda, introduced to our students by Allen, and now they are a must for future missions!

Sue taught each day and had two custom-made jars: one flawless and the other with cracks to show that our past mistakes allow God’s love and grace to shine through us. She put a candle in the cracked jar.

To demonstrate the transformation Christ brings from the inside out Sue and Christine (one of our Ugandan directors) did makeovers for the ladies and female students. It was amazing to seeing the ladies reaction to having makeup applied, many for the first time.

We were told the men often say that a female who wears makeup is useless cause she can’t do the cooking, gardening and cleaning…to which one of the women responded, “I don’t care what my husband say’s when I get home: I feel beautiful!” Thankfully, the reaction from the villages was positive and the makeovers were one of the many things they thanked us for on our last day in the villages.

The preaching seminars were powerful and we were able to answer a lot of questions the pastors had. Subjects addressed were polygamy, human trafficking by forced marriages, female circumcision, idols, dangers of the prosperity gospel, and more. There are so many obstacles but the leaders are learning more each year and the injustices to the weak and needy are decreasing while Christ’s love increases.

Upon returning to the States Allen and I missed our train from New York to Newark. The extra time on the platform gave us time to see a situation that looked wrong; a girl about 14 years old in tears with a man around 20 hovering over her. She was terrified and he was controlling her every move. When the train arrived he forced her in despite her attempt to stay on the platform. The alarms went off in my head so I asked her if she was safe. The man heard me and began to yell and call me racial slurs. Asking her again if she was safe made him angrier so we took our seats and waited for an opportunity to help.

The man stared at me the whole train ride and I asked the conductor to call the police and tell them this girl’s situation and that she very likely needed help. The man had claimed to be her father and that it was his business if she was safe and NOT mine, and this statement would be his undoing. As we pulled up to our stop, about 7 of New York’s finest boys in blue were there to question him. I was so impressed by their response and knowledge about how to deal with this kind of situation. Two female officers took the girl to safety while the man attempted to explain how he was the father, cursed about my skin color and some more insults, and finally he was arrested.

I was interviewed three times by officers who believe she was being prostituted. The conductor latter came up to me with a high-five and said, “We got him! Good job.” It’s good to know this girl is safe and Allen and I were really glad to have missed our train that allowed us to see her tears.

Source: Brent Messimer: Rescue Innocence

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