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Fecciwa holds a week’s action of food and nutrition in the Gambia

Oct 30, 2013, 11:41 AM

[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-US JA X-NONE The acronym FECCIWA stands for the Fellowship of Christian Councils and Churches in West Africa.The fellowship is composed of thirteen member countries such as The Gambia, Senegal, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea Conakry, Ghana, Niger, Nigeria, Togo, Cote D’ivoire, Benin, Burkina Faso and Mali.

FECCIWA member Churches come together periodically to study issues that affect the West African sub-region and make proposals helpful to Churches, governments of member countries and partners.

This year, The Gambia hosted the week’s seminar and action for Food and Nutrition.The theme chosen was, ‘Seeds for Life’.The deliberations were from 11th – 17th October 2013. On Sunday, 13th October 2013, delegates of the Seminar gathered at the Christ Church, Serrekunda for the opening ecumenical service.

Present to welcome the gathering was the current Chairman of The Gambia Christian Council, Primate and Metropolitan Archbishop of the Anglican Church, Dr. Solomon Tilewa Johnson.The ecumenical service was punctuated with the welcome remarks and purpose of the unique gathering which the Archbishop explained.Prayers, Scripture readings, and animation of joyous singing filled the day’s worship service which was well attended.

On Wednesday, 16th October 2013, the week’s seminar was held at the Joint Officers’ Mess in Kotu.Many Church leaders, members of the Gambia Christian Council and invited guests graced the occasion. Very well abled speakers dilated on the importance of Food and Nutrition from various perspectives.

The main speaker for the day was Reverend Emmanuel Udofia, The Primate of the African Church of Nigeria and Chairman of the FECCIWA.During his speech he explained that from the beginning of the world, God provided seeds for life for all human kind which was a blessing.

If human beings suffer today for lack of food, it is because they failed to observe God’s plans.He made references to various biblical texts where God had provided seeds for life.These include Is. 55:10, Gen. 1 and 2, Gen. 26, Ex. 36:5, Ps. 27:35, Jer. 29:39, Mat. 13,14 and16.

In all these references he said, God had provided seeds for life from one generation to the other.For God, this was a way of helping human beings in their time of need.At the end of his speech Rev. Udofia made proposals that the Churches should follow.

Firstly he stressed that the Churches in West Africa should be seen involved in practical farming to help better the lives of people they serve.He believes that the Churches should not just stop at talking about Nutrition and Food.The Churches should own farm lands, till them to access food and so encourage people by example.

Secondly, he proposed that the Churches should be involved to assist victims of natural disasters like heavy storms and floods that make people lose their farm lands and be displaced.

Thirdly, the Chairman and Primate of the African Church expressed that for people to be able to farm, they should live in peaceful environment free from war.The Churches therefore should appeal to their governments to secure peaceful environment and stable agricultural policies so that people can work and have food to eat.

The deliberations of Rev. Emmanuel Udofia and other speakers where put together and documented for the use of the Churches and their governments and partners especially those from the Protestant Churches of Germany.These documented proposals are to be taken to member councils and countries for action until the next called up FECCIWA meeting.

The Banjul week for action on Food and Nutrition was regarded as a success.This shows that the Gambia though small in size can demonstrate success in international deliberations.The Christian Panorama therefore expresses felicitations to the Gambia Christian Council.