Meet Pastor John Paul Sewava, our director in Uganda

Getting off the van in Arua, Uganda for the first time, I was expecting to meet a force of nature. A man with such a big vision and passion for what God could accomplish through himself and an expectation that it would all come to fruition surely would be larger than life. Only someone with a powerful and imposing countenance could lead and protect and be the visionary that I had heard about. The surprising reality of the man I first met couldn’t be further from my expectations. Visionary, yes. Imposing, no. Pastor JP is a small, humble man with a contagious giggle. He is as likely to be found playing with and loving on the children as he is to be found in meetings with adults interested in his ministries. Pastor JP is also a very generous man. It is very cultural in Africa to share with others even if one only has a small surplus of anything. Those who are shared with often feel that they are a part of one’s family. It is clear that Pastor JP and his wife, Rose, are very generous with any extra they have because of the sheer number of young men and women who refer to Pastor JP and Rose as their parents. It seems his “family” is endless. When I think of Pastor JP, I am reminded of King David.  It really isn’t the size of the man that God cares about. It’s the size of his heart that matters. And Pastor JP has a really big heart.

Through the years Pastor JP has built a very impressive resume. He is co-founder of Gaba Community church and Africa Renewal Ministries (ARM). ARM has hundreds of church plants, a medical center, an orphanage, a University and supports several schools with over 8000 students in sponsorship programs. He has worked hard to establish Maranatha Christian School and Maranatha High School in Gaba, Uganda and has served on the board of directors for both schools.  He has served on several other boards including Wenzt Medical Center, Africa Renewal Saving and Credit, and Africa Renewal Management.  Most recently Pastor JP has planted Arua Community Church where he serves as lead pastor and he is Director of Solid Rock Christian School.

Pastor JP’s leadership and big visionary style encourage all who know him in their own personal talents. Pastor JP helps people believe they can accomplish the dreams the Lord has placed on their hearts in order to make a change in the lives of others. This is the man to whom many of us have entrusted our resources and our hearts which are tethered to the people of Uganda. He continues to work tirelessly for the greater good of people and for the pursuit of the redeeming story of the people of Arua, Uganda. What a privilege it is to know Pastor JP and for my own story to be inspired by this man after God’s own heart.

IMG_7136.2Pastor JP and his lovely wife, Rose

Solid Rock Christian School is Expanding!

We could not be more excited! Zozu recently broke ground on an expansion of Solid Rock Christian School, which willdouble the size of the current building. The expansion has already had a positive impact on the surrounding community as local laborers and suppliers are being paid fair wages for their work. Soon, the new rooms will be used to further empower the current Zozu students so that they may thrive and reach their full potential. The expansion will provide room for a sick bay, library, computer lab, offices and more. In addition, the new rooms will also provide space for future Zozu students!

IMG_1616It is hard to believe that just two short years ago the current sight of Solid Rock Christian School was just a plot of undeveloped land in rural northern Uganda. Today on that same plot of land rests a brand new two thousand square foot permanent school building, a brand new ten-stall permanent bathroom facility, and a kitchen which feeds over two hundred students a day.  But even more important than all these new physical structures at the Zozu Project are the hundreds of thriving KIDS! Kids that are clothed, fed, and attending school 8 hours a day!IMG_1614

This once barren plot of land now hosts hundreds of children receiving a formal education, food, community, protection, and consistency, allowing them to grow and thrive!  Zozu also supports a staff of seven full time educators, two cooks, and a full time nurse practitioner to serve the needs of each and every child at the school. Zozu has made such an impact, that the school is now attracted teams of volunteers from all around the globe who are wanting to partner with Zozu through short term mission trips to teach, encourage, serve, and help facilitate additional building projects at the site.

New construction is now under way on this sacred ground, bringing even more potential growth and hope to this community. The personal and material growth of Zozu over the past year has been nothing short of a miracle. We cannot express how deeply grateful we are to you, our donors and sponsors, who have made this all possible. We look forward to sharing  with you how God will use the new Solid Rock School expansion to continue to transform the lives of the children of Arua, Uganda.