It is hot and dusty and only the main road is paved to the town of Ouélessébougou, Mali. 80km south of the Mali capital Bamako, mud huts, hand-dug wells, and huge cooking pots are all normal sights.
The church has a tin roof, and the metal covers on its windows are propped open today by sticks to let the air and sun inside. The crude wooden benches are bowed in the middle. The women come beautifully dressed even though it would appear they have no way of maintaining their wardrobe. Approximately 20 women share their testimonies. Some stories are humorous, others are very serious, but the common theme is the importance of family.
After the testimonies a retired pastor shares with us how there used to be no crime in Mali. But now, villages are having problems they never had before. He talks about the breakdown of the family and the importance of having Christian programs. He says that people don’t have electricity, they don’t have running water, but they do have radios and cell phones.
TWR is only one small piece of a greater story in Mali, but we are an important part of the story.