Pastor donates 500 trees for reforestation

L'Église Méthodiste Unie dans l'Est du Congo apporte sa contribution à la protection de l'environnement en plantant des arbres. L'évêque Gabriel Yemba Unda, dont les bureaux sont situés à la mission de l'Église Méthodiste Unie de Lokole à Kindu, a déclaré que le reboisement contribue non seulement à la lutte contre le réchauffement climatique, mais aussi favorise la respiration de l’air pur.

The United Methodist Church in East Congo is doing its part to protect the environment through reforestation efforts.

A man and woman work together to plant a sapling as part of reforestation efforts by the church in East Congo. Photo by Judith Yanga, UMNS.

A man and woman work together to plant a sapling as part of reforestation efforts by the church in East Congo. Photo by Judith Yanga, UMNS.

"We cut trees from our forests every day for domestic use, it is good to think of replacing them in order to protect our environment against global warming. Our concessions must be surrounded by trees to allow fresh air (to breathe), where it is good to live," said East Congo Area Bishop Gabriel Yemba Unda at The United Methodist Church Mission of Lokole in Kindu, where his office is located.

In setting up priority plans for the church in East Congo, Unda emphasized the need for the fight against global warming to cut across every program area of the church.

The Rev. Paul Omba, director of program and development of the East Congo Episcopal Area, urged local church clergy and laity to take the lead by bringing one tree each to help reforest Kindu.

Félix Okende, pastor of the local Francophone Church of Tokolote, answered the call with a gift of 500 trees, which included eucalyptus, palm, avocado, mandarin and orange trees, for the reforestation efforts.

A man sets a tree sapling into the ground in Kindu, Democratic Republic of Congo. The church is working to fight against global warming and to demonstrate appreciation for God’s creation. Photo by Judith Yanga, UMNS.

A man sets a tree sapling into the ground in Kindu, Democratic Republic of Congo. The church is working to fight against global warming and to demonstrate appreciation for God’s creation. Photo by Judith Yanga, UMNS.

“I am a pastor and agronomist. I like to protect nature, and I have my nurseries of several kinds of trees that I sell, but this time I decided to offer a share to God. This is why I offered this gift of young plants to be planted at the Methodist Mission Station,” Okende said.

A team of episcopal office staff and other members of the church are planting the trees. The initiative kicked off earlier this year.

According to Omba, the goal of the reforestation activity is to “contribute to the fight against global warming but also, and especially, for the ornament and the beautification of the environment."

The United Methodist Church, in its official teachings, urges members to care for God’s creation and identifies climate change as a threat to that creation, especially to people already struggling with poverty.

“The adverse impacts of global climate change disproportionately affect individuals and nations least responsible for the emissions,” the denomination’s Book of Discipline states.

Yanga is the director of communication for the East Congo Episcopal Area.

News media contact: Vicki Brown, Nashville, Tenn., (615) 742-5470 or newsdesk@umcom.orgTo read more United Methodist news, subscribe to the free Daily or Weekly Digests. 

Latest News

Social Concerns
Clergywomen receive leadership training from the Rev. Joseph Bituka during the Kivu Annual Conference in June. Photo by Judith Osongo Yanga, UMNS.

Helping trauma survivors heal in the Congo

Clergywomen learn strategies for leading, evangelizing and counseling faithful in conflict settings.
Central Conferences
Bishop Gabriel Yemba Unda (right), with wife Marie Claire Unda, speaks during the 2018 East Congo Annual Conference in Kindu. Bishop Unda launched an initiative to rebuild United Methodist buildings in the Eastern Congo Episcopal Area after civil wars there destroyed many churches and other structures. Photo by Chadrack Tambwe Londe, UMNS.

Faithful help rebuild Eastern Congo Episcopal Area

Bishop Gabriel Yemba Unda’s $1-per-member-per-month initiative focuses on the infrastructure of the church.
Bishops
Bishop Gregory Palmer makes a presentation during the February 2018 meeting of the United Methodist Standing Committee on Central Conference Matters in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire. File photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS.

The long road to adding 5 new bishops

Rumors have been flying about where five new bishops will serve in Africa. But no decisions have been made.

Sign up for our newsletter!

SUBSCRIBE