Thursday, December 16, 2010

Happy 38th Wedding Anniversary!

United in marriage Dec. 16, 1972

Growing up so far apart and in such different environments it could only be by Divine appointment that Rich and Kathy ever met!

All dressed up for the Prom
(spent one year in Florida)

While Richard was growing up in Central Pennsylvania, Kathy was growing up across the ocean in the middle of Africa in, Kayembe and Wamaza in Belgian Congo then called Zaire and now known as the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Kathy at home in Kayembe

But God....had a special ministry for these two and caused their lives to intersect in Grand Rapids, Michigan. And, of course, there is so much more to their story. Hopefully, one day it will all be written down.

For now, we all want to say a big Happy Anniversary! We wish we could be there with you to sit down with a good cup of coffee and reminisce, but there is so much to do, both there and here. So, we will wait until we all join hands and raise them together, crying out with the angels, Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain before the foundations of the world.

With all our love and prayers,
Barb, Smitty and the BESI Board

Friday, October 15, 2010

Expanding Our Programming to 14 Dialects / Languages

A carton of CDs of Dr. Charles Stanley's "In Touch" messages in seven languages (Swahili, African French, Kikongo, Kinyarwandan, Luganda, Masaai, and Mandarin) arrived at our door yesterday. This brings our total dialects / languages to fourteen.

We began broadcasting the program in African French at 11:00 a.m. alternating days with Kikongo. We will begin broadcasting Swahili in the afternoon at 3:30 p.m., alternating with Kinyarwanda each day of the week.

We need to study how and when to introduce Luganda (possibly at 7:30 p.m.), which is spoken in the North on the border with Uganda; and Masaai of Kenya and Mandarin (used by the Chinese working in DRC), which are not languages of the DRC. We will present CDs and tracts in Mandarin to the UN Medical team here, which are Chinese.

We do thank "In Touch" and REJOICE that we did not have to pay the $200 customs requested in Kinshasa, and that the programs will now be effectively used in our outreach to most of the Eastern D R Congo in FM and SW broadcasts.

Thank you for all your love and prayers for us!! Praise the Lord we can still give out the Word through Radio Kahuzi, churches, and personal testimonies!

May we continue to be FAITHFUL! And, our LORD is FAITHFUL and keeps us going. It is HIS FAITHFULNESS that keeps us!

Keep Looking Up! In His Love,
Richard & Kathy McDonald

Another Thousand Radios!

Galcom continues to be a wonderful partner in ministry and recently offered us another 1,000 radios without charge, except for the shipping.

400 SW worth $8,000;
600 FMs worth $12,000, total value $20,000.

Can you imagine! This will bring our total to 16,500 with a total value of $330,000 through the generosity of Galcom International!

A New Way to Listen to Radio Kahuzi
One of my friends told me that her grandson just loves to listen to Radio Kahuzi. She came by one day to ask me if I could give her another radio as her grandson needed two radios.

I had already given him one of the Galcom FMs and now he wanted a little red short wave radio. I asked her why he needed two radios.

She told me that when he rides his bike he has the little radio hooked onto his handlebars, but now he needed two, so that he could have stereo quality while he rides his bike!

Just another way to listen to Radio Kahuzi! He has grown into a fine young man and still loves to listen to Radio Kahuzi.

Aunt Kathy's Grace Notes

People are so hungry to hear the Word of God. it's as though a whole generation of people have been skipped over in time, since the wars in Congo.

Bible Schools and some means of Christian teaching fell off during the wars as the population was scattered about. Now, there's so much need for folks to hear the Word, to uplift their thoughts and Spirits, and to think on "things above," instead of just the terrible things that go on, over and over again!

A house is being built next door to us; and as they started the construction, of
course, I gave a couple Galcom radios to the "serious" men, the ones in charge. And then, as some of the bricklayers and cement mixers showed that they were serious about hearing the Word, we gave them a radio!

Now, during the day, the sermons and Christian music can be heard around the neighborhood as the men work on the houses being constructed!

The Word of God is being given out from the rooftops!
Reaching Hutu Rebels with Help
from Swedish UN Commander

Greetings from Bukavu!

Kathy and I are so thankful to be able to keep on keeping on, here in the D R Congo. Thank YOU to each one for continuing to help make this ministry possible.

We ask you to join us in prayer for an urgent need to purchase a building and property for the future stability of Radio Kahuzi.

Our Board of Directors agreed in our last board meeting to come before the Lord to ask Him for a sum "above and beyond all that we could ever ask or think.": $250,000. That sum could be raised with 250 partners sharing $1,000.

The board feels that it is imperative that we seek another property where we can grow into the future. Pray with us, please.

Otherwise, life here in Bukavu and the radio ministry continues to hum along "normally," for Africa.

However, outside of our gates life continues to be much harder for some villages in the mountains and the bush that are still having attacks by armed bandits and the Hutu rebels from Rwanda. When they need supplies, they go into the Congolese villages and loot and burn houses, and harm the women.

A few days ago I went by the MONUSCO HQ, just up the street from our broadcast studio. An old friend from Finland who had trained the Congolese police ten years ago had returned after five years absence. he now heads up a group of Peace Keepers north of Bukavu. He introduced me to the Swedish Commander of a five-man Peace Keeper team in the mountains of Kilembwe. He asked me to follow up with him on installing our FM repeaters at Kilembwe and other sites. he is frustrated with the fact that their efforts to communicate with the Hutu leave them still unreached with the message to help them find, choose and receive their peaceful return to their homeland.

A few weeks ago, he had just found a group of young Hutu military who would have been four years old when they came across the border in 1994; and when asked why they were not opting for their return, they said they were uninformed of any options or program that would allow, let alone, guarantee their safe return to Rwanda. They have now been repatriated peacefully!

So, he sees our SW and FM broadcasts would be a wonderful help, since the Hutu and other warring groups do listen to Radio Kahuzi. Praise the LORD! Pray for our follow through with both messages of reconciliation!

Pray that this pillaging and violence to women and children will somehow end and that they will receive Reconciliation, will go back to Rwanda where they can start over living "normally" once again. Now, they live in the mountain jungle and forests--not much hope for them except with the Lord's intervention into their lives--and possibly by the LORD's Wisdom and Grace, through Radio Kahuzi.

Many have gone back to Rwanda and have gotten their lives back together again. These are the same folks that left Rwanda in 1994 during the genocide. They fled over here to Congo Refugee camps where they were ministered to through Radio Kahuzi until the War of 1996, when they were chased into the jungle by the invading forces from Rwanda--so it's been a while!

Thank you for all your love and prayers for us!! These aren't easy days in the Congo, but seems like the whole world is going down fast. Praise the Lord we can still give out the Word through Radio Kahuzi!

Monday, July 5, 2010

A Day of Mourning

The Radio Kahuzi Staff and the BESI Board of Directors join the Congolese people in a Day of Mourning for the victims of the tanker explosion.

Richard reported, "Yes, we saw the burned truck and body bags on French TV news; and the helicopters have been flying over our station this afternoon, helping some victims get to hospitals here. There will be need to medically evacuate many to better hospitals specializing on burns.

"It is a real tragedy for many families and that whole area--as people would have been there from many villages for the out-door market.

"Remember the families who lost loved ones and those who will have years of medical follow-up for those who recover!

"May the Lord Minister in Grace and Mercy to those touched; May He come soon!

"Love, Richard & Kathy

"P.S Sange is close to where I had my retinas torn in 1983."

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July!

Happy Birthday, America and BESI / Radio Kahuzi!

Nineteen years ago on July 4, 1991 the permit for our radio ministry was signed into law after many long hours, days and months of work on the technical papers required for the very first non-government radio station in Zaire, (previously known as the Belgian Congo) now the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The permit was signed by both the Minister of State for Information and Press and the Minister of State for Agriculture. Their letters agreed to the technical papers proposing several of each: FM, medium wave, and shortwave broadcasting transmitters for Christian programming, as well as for agricultural and other rural-development broadcasting, including health, hygiene, and nutrition. They classified it as a Program of Priority Public Investments, allowing customs exemptions for importations of equipment.

Congratulations, Rich and Kathy for your vision and perseverance in the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

God Bless America and God bless Central Africa.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

DR Congo Tanker fire kills 200 Near Bukavu

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Home again with lots of challenges and opportunities

Dear Friends of Radio Kahuzi,

We're safe and sound back home in Bukavu. It was raining cats and dogs when we got to the border, but Renee, a friend, was there to pick us up, which was so wonderful!

There's a place in Rwanda in the forest, when we get near Bukavu, where we can get out on the cell phone, so we stopped there to let Renee know that we were near to arriving at the border.

We arrived home almost at dark, and guess what, no lights! I always hate that when it's so dark in the house, and one never knows, after a long absence, what's crawled in under the doors! The kitchen is always depressing, but thankfully we had some bottled water and a can of cheese and spam, so we were OK.

Always quite an adjustment after living the "hi-life" of the States! But, it's always good to be home, and to be welcomed by everyone, including the kitties and doggies and Kasuku, our African gray parrot, who really speaks!

A couple days ago, I was heading out to the backyard and just before walking my path, I noticed the mama kitty sitting in the sunshine, looking so contented and peaceful. All of a sudden, she jumped up, fur all puffed out, and just behind her, a black snake rose up and sat there, swaying back and forth with the mama cat on guard right in front if it.

I ran and called Lambert to come and kill it, but by the time he got there, the thing was slithering off into the little woods.

Another Cobra hanging out in the backyard!

So, it's out there somewhere! Yucky. This is the land of "being on guard." We appreciate your prayers!

(Editor's note: This is the seventh encounter for Kathy in the past couple years. Please pray for safety--even in their home--as one was curled up behind the kitchen door. They cannot be outrun and it is almost instant death. There is no antivenin available in Bukavu.)

A Visit from the Mai Mai!

Please pray for the Lord's leading as we follow up on an offer from General Dunia's assistant for us to "drop in for a visit" at his new home in Bukavu, next door to the Governor's mansion!

We praise the Lord for the assistant's contact, as he came for more Galcom SW radios and "Mopila" journals to take to the Fizi territory for the troops about 175 miles to the south. He responded to my questions as to how Radio Kahuzi was instrumental in helping them make the transition from Mai Mai "Enemy #1" to integrated leaders in the government army.
Photo: Mai Mai troops receive red short wave radio for General Dunia from Gregoire, our journalist when he visited the Fizi territory in April 2005.

He shared that they did not know what to think when they received the little red radio from us with General Dunia's name written on the back. They thought it could be a bomb, and put it through careful testing and secure investigation before giving it the OK, all clear signal and turned it on!

The radio became a fantastic favorite to all concerned when they began hearing the Gospel with a clear signal in their language, and General Dunia received it as his very own. No wonder his assistant was so happy to later take several loads of radios back with him after bringing us General Dunia's "Thank You" letter.

The Fizi territory is one of the areas we would like to install one of ten Cornerstone FM transmitters / repeaters for better coverage.

FM travels by line-of-sight with mountains interfering with the signal traveling down the other side of the mountain. To reach down in the valley between mountains we must install a transmitter/repeater.

Short wave travels up an down the mountains with no impediment, but more people own FMs than shortwave radios.

For each unit we must purchase a solar panel, a 45-watt booster, antenna, coax, mic and truck battery, plus cover shipping from Canada for a total of approximately $3,333 each. By faith we have ordered three units to begin installation in three new areas.

We already installed #1 at Walungu, 15 miles from Bukavu, which is functioning well.
As God provides, we will expand to include key mountain points: #2 at Wamaza in Maniema Province (250 miles); #3 at Shabunda (150); #4 at Fizi (175), or Kabambare (350). Others: Kalima (215); Kampene (325); Kipaka (275); Kamituga (100); Mwenga (60); and Baraka (160).
And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled." Matt. 14:23

While visiting the Fizi Territory, Gregoire distributed radios to the mama's in the fields. All are eager to hear the Gospel in their own "heart" language.

A Note from BESI / Radio Kahuzi President

Help us celebrate Richard's birthday, May 2, with a special gift of encouragement!

Won't you please, prayerfully, consider a gift, large or small, toward our goal of $10,000 to purchase three FM Cornerstone units.

Consider Becoming a monthly partner
to help us keep Rich and Kathy on the field and to expand our ability to reach those who have ears to hear with His message of Grace and forgiveness.

Please earmark your special gift: "Cornerstone Project,"
and / or "McDonald's Monthly Support." Both are so greatly needed!

"How shall they believe on Him of whom they have not heard..." You can help make a way for them to hear Jesus' words, "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."

Thank you for sharing our vision!
Keep Looking Up!
Harold Smith
BESI / Radio Kahuzi

Sunday, March 14, 2010

NRB 2010 International Media Impact Award

Richard and Kathy McDonald - Harold and Barbara Smith

The National Religious Broadcasters awarded the McDonalds and Radio Kahuzi, Bukavu, D. R. Congo on March 1, 2010 with their prestigious award and recognition for media impact in Africa and beyond.

Richard and Kathy left the States the year after their marriage in 1972 to serve along side Kathy’s parents, Fred and Millie Bahler, missionaries to Burundi (where Kathy was born) and the Belgium Congo where she grew up in a mud house with dirt floors and grass roof.

They arrived in the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire) and served with Kathy’s parents in linguistics, administration and child evangelism. In 1979 they felt led of the Lord to become “tent-maker” missionaries by working for an American agri-business company.

In 1983 Richard was blinded by an accident that tore both his retinas and changed the course of their future ministry to missionary radio

After eye surgery in Washington D.C. Richard was told he should be very careful of the roads in Africa. His eyes would not stand any stress or pressure for the first year waiting for healing. Undaunted, Richard and Kathy returned to Bukavu as independent missionaries with little money and no organization in the States for a home office.

With the help of his sister, Barbara, a secretary at Toccoa Falls College, the Smiths incorporated Believer’s Express Service, establishing a home office, a board of directors, and a small donor base of friends and family in 1986 while attending TFC.

Our Partnership with HCJB Global

Kathy and Richard in training at HCJB Engineering Center in 1992

Richard felt one retina was detaching again in 1988 and Kathy’s father was very ill. Lying in a hospital bed, Richard began to envision the possibility of reaching millions of souls through radio. The only problem was he would need the permission of President Mobutu to accomplish his dream. In those years the government radios had a monopoly and the law prohibited foreigners from broadcasting or even using a HAM radio to send messages outside the country.

They came to the States quickly, and were finally successful in getting an insurance settlement from the accident and eye surgery of $75,000 which underwrote their work in Africa.

Fred remained in ICU for six months with malaria, spinal meningitis, and lymphoma. Fred died eight years later at the age of 73, in 1996 during the First War of the Congo Revolution. (Sadly, Richard and Kathy were literally pinned down on the floor, once for three days, later, for eleven days.)

Richard labored night and day for three years preparing and presenting his request to the local, provincial, and national government for the first non-governmental radio license. There was much opposition by the dominant religious group, once the word was out regarding his application for a license.

But God overruled and in March of 1991, President Mobutu signed a Presidential ordinance, declaring BESI to be a Congolese organization so that Richard & Kathy and Fred Bahler could begin their work, and the Ministers of Agriculture and of Information and Press signed the documents on the 4th of July 1991, to allow BESI to begin the first Christian development broadcasting network through out the Congo.

After the 1991 food riots and a major national evacuation of foreigners settled down, Richard was now suffering with double vision and difficulty until 2007 when another surgery gave him 20/20! A real answer to prayer!

In 1988 while waiting for the license, BESI made a proposal to HCJB World Radio—if Richard could get the license would HCJB provide them with the equipment. This was the beginning of a new outreach for HCJB. Through much prayer, phone calls and just not taking NO for an answer, HCJB agreed and invited Rich and Kathy to come to Elkhart, IN, in 1992, to their engineering center to train on the “FM transmitter in a suitcase.” HCJB Global now has over 300 radio plants around the world with Radio Kahuzi as the prototype.

Excited to see their dream come true the McDonalds returned to Bukavu and flipped the switch on Christmas Eve 1992 with Focus on the Family, “Adventures in Odyssey” and beautiful Christmas music.

The next 16 years were filled with war, bodily danger and no rest. They never left the station, even for medial checkups, dental work, or many bouts of malaria for 17 years.

Rich and Kathy visit Dr. ZoZo at the famous Hotel Rwanda where many dear friends lost their lives during the genocide in 1994

  • 1994 the genocide in Rwanda spilled over into Bukavu with 30 refugee camps under our antennas and two million souls to reach with the Gospel. The World Food Program asked Radio Kahuzi to be the unique messenger of their daily rations to the refugees in French, Swahili, and Kinyarwandan languages.

  • 1995 Richard worked with a group from World Vision and a German group, “Daguna” to show the “Jesus” film in the refugee camps. Their truck was attacked by Hutu rebels and the pastor who gave the invitation to receive Christ was nearly beaten to death until a Russian Daguna team member threw himself between the attackers and the pastor, saying, "If you kill him, you will have to kill me, too." The rebels backed off.
  • 1995 – 1998 World Vision and the other groups evacuated from the Congo at the beginning of the war, because it became too dangerous to work. Richard and Kathy remained at the station. Radio Kahuzi broadcast the sound track from the “Jesus” film out to the refugee camps.

Overview of City of Bukavu with Rwanda in the background

  • 1996 during the first invasion Rich and Kathy lay on the floor of the radio station as mortars and shelling hit all four sides of the station. It was a surprise attack from Rwanda, beginning the long war that continues today with the rape and mutilation of the women and young girls.

  • This invasion from Rwanda and seven other nations found Rich and Kathy displaced and hidden in a new residence for a week along with the King of the Bashi tribe of two million souls. Most of the staff of Radio Kahuzi had to flee into the mountains and jungle, marching over 100 miles to safety with only the clothes on their backs.

  • 1998 Kathy was alone with one staff member while Richard assisted a local family when 17 rebels surrounded the station. Others burst into the station putting a gun to Kathy’s head and demanded they get off the air.

Kathy was confronted with rape and certain and death. However, God gave her the strength to show them no fear by standing toe to toe with the rebel in her face. He asked, “Aren’t you afraid to die?” Kathy looked him in the eyes and replied in perfect Swahili, “Oh, no, Jesus watches over me, Jesus protects me. If I live, I live with Jesus; and if I die, I die with Jesus.” Shortly, thereafter, they packed up their weapons, and left.

Mike Axman and Ed Penkowski install the shortwave transmitter
  • 2001 HCJB installed the 1,000 watt, tropical band short-wave making it possible to reach most of Central Africa and beyond with a potential audience of over 10 million in seven languages / dialects: English, French, Swahili, Lingala, Kicongo, Kinyarwanda and Mashi.

  • 2005 Lt Richard MBUYU testified in an interview, that in 2000, while he was laying siege to the city of Bukavu, he listened to Radio Kahuzi on the Galcom radios his seven hundred troops had pillaged from several Radio Clubs. What he heard was Richard and later Gregior, reasoning with him not to destroy the city, intermittent with readings from Psalms and Proverbs.
  • Lt. MBUYU was convicted by what he was hearing and received Jesus Christ as his Savior at Camp TV, overlooking the city of Bukavu. He then laid down his guns, machetes, fetishes and magic water, which they believed made them invisible to bullets, saying, "Your words were too powerful for me."

Pastor Gregoire (standing on the right) visits Mai Mai rebels after their return home

  • Christmas day 2000, He ordered his Mai - Mai troops to return home to Fizi where they built a church, listening to Bible teaching on Radio Kahuzi and giving out recorded copies of the programs to the population. The congregation has grown, and the church is still functioning today. He and his troops have integrated into the National army and he is now a Commander.
Richard at controls during countries first free election

  • 2007 Radio Kahuzi helped the government monitor the elections and to broadcast the results of the first free and democratic election in the history of the Democratic Republic of Congo with our shortwave transmitter to the whole country.

Richard greeting the newly elected Governor and his wife at official reception


Rev. Allan McGruil and Richard discussing FM equipment at NRB
  • BESI in partnership with Galcom International are providing the local people with solar-powered radios, pre-tuned to Radio Kahuzi 91.1 FM or 102.1 FM or 6.210 Mhz short-wave. Since 1992 we have distributed over 15,500 radios with more on the way.

Radio Club for the many disabled by polio

  • Richard has organized over 300 Kahuzi Radio Clubs in the local area with an estimated membership varying from 10 to 1,000 per club, with a total of well over 10,000. This does not represent our total listening audience, but only those who have direct contact with the staff of Radio Kahuzi.
  • Each club elects a president, who is responsible to organize the village or radio club to do self-help projects and coordinate listening to maximize the effectiveness of Radio Kahuzi.

These young men visit Radio Kahuzi from a Pygmy tribe. There are over 600,000 in the Manemia Jungle basin.

  • They also come to the station or rendezvous with staff on a regular basis, bringing correspondence, reports, and small notebooks filled with testimonies of the newest believers, greetings to family and friends, and their favorite song requests. Their correspondence is very popular and becomes a vital testimony as they are read twice a day on Radio Kahuzi.

  • The presidents also come to get seed to plant gardens, and tools: watering cans and hoes, etc. One radio club organized a health center and feeding program (nutrition center) for approximately 800 widows and orphans that are cared for with the help of seven other radio clubs nearby. They help them plant gardens, etc.

  • 2009 cellular phone communication has been established with text messaging. Recently, Hutu refugees in the jungle with the FDLR sent a message to thank the young lady who reads a chapter from the Bible each day in Kinyarwandan for them. What they are hearing is a Mega Voice reader!

Teachers and students visit Radio Kahuzi from a local university

  • Rwandan listeners send text messages in from Cyangugu and the University of Butari further East in Rwanda. They also enjoy hearing the Word of God in their own “heart language.”

Text message also come from distant Kahuzi Radio Clubs. They also use their cell phones to call into VOA in Washington, DC, to participate in live programs like “Washington Forum”, “America and You”, “Dialogue on Religion”, etc.

As you can see technology has even penetrated the heart of Africa!

  • We believe that Richard and Kathy McDonald have made a significant ministry impact on the Democratic Republic of Congo. They have uniquely impacted their region and beyond, through establishing the very first non-government, Christian broadcasting network utilizing FM, and Shortwave, along with distribution of 15,500 Galcom solar-powered, handheld, pre-tuned radios, text messaging, cell phone and live streaming via satellite programming that is vital and pertinent to the lives and culture of Central Africa and beyond.

  • Since Radio Kahuzi does not sell commercial airtime, or ask for donations from its listening audience, or charge for any fees to our great programmers, our faith-based radio ministry is very unique. We depend upon those in the States with a burden to help us reach the lost and needy in Africa.
Mrs. Adrian Rogers & Richard McDonald at NRB

(She was so thrilled that we still carry "Love Worth Finding" as many programmers have cut out international broadcasting. We were happy to tell her that we have never charged their ministry for programs.)

  • Programmers: Adrian Rogers, “Love Worth Finding”; Children’s Bible Hour, Uncle Charlie’s “Keys for Kids”; Pacific Garden Mission, “Unshackled”, Radio Bible Class, “Our Daily Bread”; Dr. Kenn Gangle, “Morning Light”; Focus on the Family in French and English; Creation Institute, “Science, Scripture, and Salvation”; Voice of America, (Selected programs relevant to the region), and many others.

A Message from BESI - Radio Kahuzi President

Their pioneering of independent Christian radio in this war-torn region of the world has saved countless lives through participation in broadcasting life-saving information on malaria, cholera, AIDS, and measles in cooperation with the Red Cross and the World Health Organization.

Their life-long passion to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to improve the daily lives of the Congolese people and all those within the hearing of Radio Kahuzi deserves to be honored after so many years of sacrifice and faithful service.

We mentioned in our last blog that we were anticipating the costs of bringing the McDonalds home to attend NRB and receive their well-deserved award. The costs of international travel continue to climb. We still have a short-fall of $1,470.83.

If God has blessed you and your church family in such a way that you might prayerfully consider partnering with u on a monthly basis, or with a one-time gift, it would be so much appreciated and well invested!

May God bless you and your church family as you reach out to a lost and suffering world in need of the sound of the Gospel.

Keep Looking Up!

Harold Smith, President

BESI / Radio Kahuzi

Sunday, January 24, 2010


Our hearts go out to the survivors of the recent earthquake in Haiti. Our memories are still fresh with the terror of Sunday, February 3, 2008 and a 6.0 quake. We can empathize in a small way. What can compare with the magnitude of the loss of life.

We understand the fear in the hearts of the survivors in Haiti as we both experienced the same fear of being inside our home and radio studio as the after-shocks continued for weeks. We slept by the door on chairs or Kathy's preferred sleeping quarters--the car.

We, and our African staff, join you and others around the world in prayer for those still trapped and those with life threatening injuries and little help, along with the families of the victims and those un-accounted for. It is all beyond our comprehension. We all ask the question-why so much suffering? Only eternity will reveal to us the sovereignty of God through the devastation.

Radio Kahuzi
Shortwave in need of repair

We were granted permission to go back on the air on Thanksgiving Day but without our direct link to satellite, which provides daily news reports and special programming in Swahili and French live from America.

Details are still being worked out, but we know God is in control.

In the meantime, we experienced an equipment failure on the shortwave on January 15th. The FM is working fine.

Our wonderful friends at HCJB Global Technologies are coming to the rescue once again with a repair kit via DHL. Pray for a quick and safe delivery.

Such is life in Africa! "But we count it all joy for the prize that is set before us" as did our Lord Jesus Christ.

Providing for Widows and Orphans

On the 19th Victor came with Mama Odette to thank us for the rice and oil, etc., that she and seven other widows received for Christmas from Radio Kahuzi.

The photo is of our journalist, Pastor Gregoire, Pastor Victor and Odette. We also gave a Swahili Bible and baby blanket to each of the eight widows. Odette holds a precious shortwave radio to share with her radio club members.

These women maintain a large communal garden, growing food for the feeding program of the Kazaroho Health Center at Panzi.
The feeding program takes place at Bugabo, where they select the very malnourished from seven radio club communities to send to the famous Dr. Mukwege, a recent Peace Prize recipient at Panzi Hospital. There the children are treated, and released after their health is restored.

In recent years the wife of the Coordinator of Food for the Hungry has helped provide for the daily feeding of the children of these vulnerable families. She has returned to the States and indicated she may no longer be able to help. So we are in prayer for the Lord's wisdom and direction in the months ahead.

This, and some of the other clubs also assist victims of violence, which continues to be a terrible problem, with the different armed groups roaming the territories without constraint!

Here is a dear believer in Christ, smiling through the emotional scars and physical disability.

Yesterday I read an open letter from a well-know author who is trying to document and cope with the sexual violence here. Links to her writings appear in the side bar.

Pray for our testimony to these expats as well as the victims to whom we are trying to minister! We seek the LORD's solutions for the New Year and His Grace! Thank you for holding us up before the Lord in prayer.

Keep on Keeping On!
Richard & Kathy McDonald & our Radio Kahuzi Team

A Note from BESI / Radio Kahuzi President

There are so many voices crying for donations and we praise Him that there is much generosity being poured out for Haiti and beyond.

We hesitate to add our voice to the mounting cry. However, there is a need of approximately $7,900 to cover Rich and Kathy's flight home and housing in Feb/Mar. So far, we have received $2,280, leaving a balance of $5,620.

We mentioned in our last e-mail that they have won the NRB International Award for Media Impact with a presentation ceremony on March 1. You may read about this and other awards on the NRB website by clicking here. You can also read the winning nomination story on our website by clicking here.

May God bless you and your church family as you reach out to a lost and suffering world.

Keep Looking Up!

BESI / Radio Kahuzi

Dr. & Mrs. Frank Wright, President of NRB
with the Smiths in February 2002 in Nashville, TN