We have a desperate need to find apartments/homes for missionaries to live in. This need is being generated by three things: 1) the increase in new missionaries into the mission field; 2) we have several areas in the mission where we have 8 missionaries living in one home–the goal is to have no more than four in one location (it is hard on both the home and the missionaries to have so many people living together); 3) Pres McMullin has a goal to have a set of missionaries in each ‘sector’ or Church area (missionaries in every Ward or Branch). With the growth of the Church here (one Stake a year) new sectors are created every month, creating a need to find apartments in or near those areas for missionaries to work from.
Right now we are actively looking for apartments/homes in Mwembila, Kisanga, Kananga, Luputa, Mwene Ditu, Mbuji Mayi, Kakonda, Likasi, Kolwezi, Bongoga, and Lubumbashi (I am sure I am forgetting one or two!).
Due to the difficulty finding places to live, we have been trying to think outside the box for solutions. One solution we have been using is to use the small buildings or annexes that many homes have on their property. For example, we recently finished remodeling the annex next to a missionary apartment in Kananga. The missionary couple Billings are staying there while they work with the construction training program and two new church buildings going up in Kananga.
The church in Kadonda also has an annex we have decided to remodel for the use of missionaries. We have tried for months to find a place in Kadonda for missionaries to live and work in that city, with no luck. So this is our current solution. It works on several levels: we already rent the property and buildings for Church meetings; the annex is currently not being used by the members; any work put into the annex will benefit the members of the church if/when we find another home for the missionaries to live in.
The building consists of five large rooms and two small rooms. The two small rooms we are making into toilet/shower/sink areas, the five large rooms are three bedrooms, a kitchen, and a living room.
Last week the plumbers started installing the toilet, showers and sinks (including a large sink in the kitchen).
Next week their work should be done, and we will begin painting (most of the rooms are already painted, so there is not much work to do there).
This is the annex, which sits behind the church and chapel area.
The kitchen area
One of the three bedrooms
The front door and salon in the foreground, the kitchen in the next room
We are now looking at other annexes attached to other buildings to do the same thing.