What Would You Do?
What would you do as a mother of several young children, with no marketable skills, whose husband, a pastor, has been killed for his faith? You now must leave your home, which has been the parsonage. Where would you live? How would you feed your children? How would you deal with the memories of watching your husband as he was tortured and murdered for his faith? What would you do when your in-laws come and take all of your things or even your children? Such is the predicament of many young widows of pastors who have been slain in Nigeria.

Many of these women have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and are not even aware that such a condition exists. We are providing spiritual counseling, exams by a physician, and ongoing medical care (including medication as needed). We have monthly hot meals with a devotional at the Peace Center for them and their children. This gives many of them their only opportunity for fellowship with other widows who are undergoing the same problems. Each month they are given food staples (e.g., flour, oil, rice, etc.) to help them feed their children for the month. Some of them have been provided with a small business development grant to help them start a business (e.g., making and selling rice cakes) and become self-sufficient. As one set of widows become self-sufficient, another group is brought in.

Coming Up
Several buildings in the planned Anabaptist Peace Center are being designed to be used as transitional housing for widows and their children. This will allow us to further provide help in moving the widows from a place of feeling totally abandoned and helpless to a place of independence and self-sufficiency.