C&MA in Congo Assesses Damages Caused by Explosions

By Ron Julian, Alliance field director for the Republic of the Congo

The following is an adapted excerpt of a report received late Monday, March 5. It details the impact of a munitions fire and resulting explosions (that took place Sunday, March 4) upon Alliance people and churches in Brazzaville, Congo.

It has been quite a day. I spoke with the American Consular Officer this evening, and he said that a few additional explosions had been reported. There is a possibility that more explosions will take place over the next few days, since the ammunitions dump is being cleaned up.

Several workers and I went with Albert Bilongo, the national church’s regional president for the Brazzaville area, to visit the three churches that were structurally impacted by the explosions.

Here is a list of church damages:

  • Mont Carmel church, the furthest from the blast area, sustained truss damage that will need to be repaired. Windows were also blown out.
  • Les Messagers church has the most damage. Its roof is caved in; however, the poured concrete was still in good shape (including the building frame and the floor of the second story). From the second floor, we could see neighboring homes; almost all of them had major roof damage.
  • At Vie Profonde, many of the trusses were cracked or broken; because of this, the roof was open in one area, and much of it was sagging.

Pastors’ Homes Damaged, Children Displaced

The pastors of these three churches need repairs done in their homes, including Pastor Symphorian who lives in a family home near the blast area.

We have heard that Pastor Oyiaffni’s family home is across the street from the badly damaged Ouenze church. We hope that we’ll be able to get a look at this situation tomorrow.

Pastor Oyiaffni has been concerned about finding all the children who were in Sunday school when the explosions occurred. This afternoon the last three were found with their mother.

Pastor Caliste also reported that a five year old from his church had been separated from his mother when the blasts occurred, and he has not yet been found.

We praise God for the children found, but please pray for those, who in the confusion following the explosions, were separated from their parents. A number of these children are being looked after by the government until their parents can be located.

Recovery Steps

Tuesday, Pastor Bilongo, another staffer, and I will go with a notary to view the three church properties. He will prepare a legal document describing the damage, with the hope that the government will soon pay for the losses.

Wednesday, we will have a meeting in which pastors can report about the impact of the explosions upon our Brazzaville churches. We will also discuss how the national church can respond.

Please pray that the focus will not only be on the buildings but also on how we can assist our congregations and the affected neighborhoods in which our churches are located. Pray also that the Alliance mission will know how best to be involved in the national church’s response.

What You Can Do

Please be in prayer for the national church in Congo and for Alliance workers there. Pray for Alliance workers the world over to experience divine appointments through which they can share the good news!

Learn about the Great Commission Fund and make a donation today. Partner with dedicated Alliance workers like our personnel in Congo, who are spreading the good news about Jesus in word and deed.


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