By Pete Ekstrand
KINSHASA, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO (September 7, 2010) – Mossai Sanguma, president of the Congo Covenant Church (CEUM), has been elected general secretary in charge of medical work for the National Protestant Church of Congo.
The National Protestant Church is the umbrella organization through which 65 Protestant denominations communicate with the Democratic Republic of Congo government. Sanguma was elected during the National Protestant Church Synod meetings held August 15-22.
Sanguma will continue to serve as president of the CEUM through the end of his term in 2012. He said the election “is significant for the CEUM because it indicates the denomination has become like a model church in the Equateur Province (where the CEUM churches are located). The government in the province looks to the CEUM as a light and has sought the CEUM as a partner.”
Sanguma’s new position will have numerous responsibilities:
- Help determine the critical needs and issues for providing medical services among the 90 hospitals and 600 health centers in the nation’s 11 provinces.
- Work with overseas partners who provide personnel and financial support to National Protestant Church member denominations.
- Encourage Christian doctors graduating from medical schools to sign up for at least two-year residencies at National Protestant Church hospitals, encouraging the expansion of the doctors’ residence program.
- Work with the government’s Minister of Public Health to seek additional subsidies for
- medical work. Sanguma noted that the government agreed in August to pay the salaries of all medical staff in National Protestant Church hospitals throughout the country.
- Seek additional international partners.
“While I have been elected to this new responsibility, I also feel it is my obligation as a pastor to lead the CEUM to the end of my term as president and to ensure there is a smooth transition,” Sanguma said.
Sanguma asked people to pray for safety and security as he travels throughout the country, as well as wisdom and strength as he serves the CEUM and the National Protestant Church.
He credited the support he has received through the Evangelical Covenant Church in North America for enabling his recent election. “I want Covenant World Mission and the Covenant to know that if today I have been selected for this position, it is because of them,” Sanguma said. “All my skills I learned from them and in the United States through their support of my studies.”
Duale Lengena, a past president of the CEUM, said, “This is an honor for the Congo Covenant Church, for the Covenant and for all the missionaries who have worked here to train Congolese.”