Mieze (pron. mee-AY-zee) is a rural Mozambican village of 20,000 located about 10 km south of the Pemba airport along the main highway to Nampula…about a 20 minute drive from Iris Pemba.
The Mieze church was the first established outside the city of Pemba about seven years ago. When this project began in 2006, it had a regular congregation of just over 100. The church in Mieze has more than quadrupled in number over the past four years as the Father’s love is being lavished on the community–and especially on village children–and the curse of poverty is being broken.
About 2,500 people from Mieze and surrounding villages spent three days enjoying extravagant worship and teaching as part of the opening of our wonderful new facility in June, 2010. Another 500-plus joined them Sunday morning for the official opening ceremony and church service led by Iris Co-Founder Heidi Baker.
It is expected this new Mieze facility will be the venue for at least one major Iris regional conference annually.
What is referred to today as the “Mieze Model for village transformation” began in 2006, when a team from Summerside, Prince Edward Island in Canada built a wonderful playground for village children beside the Mieze church building. Prophetic words from several credible sources at the time confirmed that this was just the beginning of a far-reaching vision. And that vision unfolded over the next few years to include several key initiatives…all led and staffed by the local Mieze church. God also confirmed his own word by many miracles, including the supernatural multiplication of food for poor village children on three occasions! The Mieze Model includes:
• Village access to potable water
• School access program for 250 poor village children
• Food program for over 200 orphans and vulnerable children (OVCs)
• Twice-weekly medical clinics
• Milk program for needy mothers and babies
• Scabies and de-worming programs
• Residential children’s village for 40 OVCs
• Weekly children’s evangelistic program
• Recreational facilities for village children
• Farming projects: goats, chickens, eggs, vegetables and fruit
• Continuing education and training of area pastors and church leaders
These components reflect the recognition that an appropriate and effective development program needs to pursue two goals simultaneously to produce sustainable and transformational results. Immediate intervention is necessary to address acute and preventable suffering and death. The hungry must be fed; the naked must be clothed; the vulnerable must be protected. But long-term strategies must also be in place to ensure that the children we’re helping today will become leaders and contributing members of society tomorrow. Improved health care and nutrition are part of that strategy…but so is access to schooling for girls and boys, and the necessary social and financial support to enable them to walk into the fullness of God’s plan to give them “hope and a future” (Jer. 29:11).