Recently Josephales Mtebe, Lion of Judah Academy director, prepared an update. It is printed below. There is also a link to a PDF file you can read online or download to your own computer.
Mtebe greeting visitors to his office at The Lion of Judah Academy
Here’s a link to a PDF version of Mtebe’s Update: Mtebe Letter 2016 January
DIRECTOR’S UPDATE NEWS FROM THE LION OF
JUDAH ACADEMY – TANZANIA EAST AFRICA
Dear friends of the lion of Judah Academy, greetings in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ!
I thank God for the opportunity to share with you the great and amazing things God is doing through His ministry at The Lion of Judah Academy. For those who are not aware of this ministry, it is a Christian ministry which started with the aim of supporting the families of servants of God in Tanzania who devote most of their time serving the Lord, but who have little income and are unable to afford daily living, much less able to provide their children with a quality education. We, the founders of this school, decided to start the school as a way for the children from these families to be able to recognize the love of God for them, through the work of ministry that their parents are doing. Some of the Pastors we serve are working in very difficult and challenging environments, yet they persevere for the sake of the Gospel of Christ.
In addition to the children of pastors, we also serve children from poor families who live in the area where the school is located. They always express how much they feel blessed to have this school in their area. Another group that we serve is that of orphans. Finally, we also receive a few students who are able to pay the full amount of school fees…this supports some of the costs of running the school.
As some of you remember, when we started this ministry in 2001/2002 we only had a class of ten pupils; it was a kindergarten class. The class was under the supervision of a teacher who wasn’t even a trained teacher.
Today as I give out this report, the school as has a total number of 763 students from Kindergarten to High school:
- 318 pupils in primary school
- 309 students in Ordinary level of secondary school
- 90 students in Advanced level of secondary school.
All of the levels are doing very well.
The biggest challenge we have is that of having most of our students falling under the scholarship category, while only a few are sponsored. Please pray that God will provide more people who will be willing to be part of this ministry by supporting a child or a student or a project. Remember that your contribution will be supporting the building of God’s kingdom in Tanzania.
We also thank God for the fruits of the ministry that we see.
More than 50 students from our school are now taking different courses in several universities of Tanzania. We regularly have our graduates return to visit with us. Always they report to us that their university teachers and fellow students ask them the same question: “Where were you trained before coming to this university? It must be a very special school!”
Their answer is, “at Simba wa Yuda Academy” (which is Kiswahili for, “The Lion of Judah Academy”).
With the foundation our students have from their education at LOJA – the blessing of knowing Christ plus having and outstanding quality education — there is no doubt that in the near future The Lion of Judah Academy is going to provide leaders for our country.
The first group to graduate from universities will be July this year – 2016. I hope…and I believe…some will want to come join us in the work at our school. That will be a blessing indeed!
Another fruit of the ministry we are seeing is that students from our school who are in universities and colleges have founded an organization which they call, “The Lion of Judah Students Ministry.” This organization helps them, and helps the school.
I do ask that you pray for some students from our school who have failed to join universities simply because they are unable to pay the fees.
While many students are able to get loans from the government for their university fees, some are not able…and as a result they cannot attend.
I, the director, try to look for some possible solutions for these students. But they are only temporary help. Pray that God will help us find a permanent solution for this problem.
I would like to create a funding program that is special for this group of students who will be able to help our country so much if we can help them attend university.
Last year was very successful year academically for our school. In all of the district, region and National examinations that our students took, the entire class passed the examinations at a rate of 100%. This gives a very good reputation to our school.
I believe that this year 2016 will be even more successful. The staff is working very hard to make things work even better. Pray that God will provide committed teachers and staff members, who will be willing to serve and not to be served. As of now we have a staff of 60 people.
In addition to our Tanzanian teachers we have three missionaries: one married couple from U.S. and a single girl from Germany. These foreign servants of God bless our ministry a lot. Pray that God will provide for them all the support they need for their lives.
I really want to thank God for the great support I am getting from my beloved wife Pili in my leadership. Why God gave me such a wonderful helper I can’t imagine! She is a God-fearing wife. Pray that God will continue giving good health to all the members of my family.
Would you please join us to thank God for the blessing of a new Landcruiser we purchased this year! Thank you so much all of you churches as well as individuals who donated to this specific project, may God bless you. We received the car from Toyota company, Tanzania branch, on 29th December 2015. It is in very good condition.
The Lion of Judah Academy is always “behind” with its building projects…there is always much which needs to be completed!
The most urgent project that need I support for is the dormitories building project. We are finishing up building the last part of the kids dormitory, and next we begin building of the second phase of the older boys dormitory. We really need this dorm. Boys, especially those of high school age, sleep in one of the classrooms. Those boys who are in the dorm share one bed for two students.
Pray that God will open the door for more funds to come to support the projects.
I have started making the early preparations for this project. The main thing 1 am doing now is collecting the rocks/stones we need for the foundation. In the future we will need to build additional teacher houses so we have most of our teachers living near the students.
Another need — though not as urgent as that of the dormitories — is the need of getting school mini buses to help students be able to travel for study tours but also help the day scholars who walk a long distance to
come to school. If you know any of an organization or a foundation which might be willing to support such a project, connect us with them please.
Thank you again for your continuous financial support and prayers.
Rev. Josephales Mtebe
Director, The Lion of Judah Academy
(The letter was lightly edited for format and readability)