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Feb14ThuGetting to know our newest Partners in Mission territory. February 14, 2019 Text and photos by Joel Johnson
Mozambique stretches along the south-eastern coast of Africa, with palm tree-lined beaches for those seeking respite, and clear water beckoning the adventurous spirit to swim with whale sharks and manta rays. The most devout of foodies will find delicious cuisine, influenced by hundreds of years of visitors—from Arab merchants to the colonial powers that established outposts on these shores.
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But this isn’t a tourism article—Mozambique also harbours a dark side. Decades of conflict have led to the death of hundreds of thousands of people and displaced millions more. Natural disasters, such as cyclones, drought and severe flooding, seem to strike regularly. The HIV epidemic threatens to overwhelm the health-care system. Combined, these challenges have left many people vulnerable and in need of assistance.
Through it all, The Salvation Army in Mozambique has remained true to its purpose: to bring hope, caring and support to those who need it most. As it’s one of the Canada and Bermuda Territory’s newest Partners in Mission, a team from the world missions department visited Mozambique last year to see the work of The Salvation Army first-hand. We were welcomed into a vibrant community where Salvationists are steadfast in worship and service.
Here are some of my most cherished images from this journey—ones that speak to me of the spirit, strength and resilience of the people, who have continued to hope when there has been so much reason to feel lost or forgotten.