Heartbeats in the Angolan Bush Part II

| Fiona Killough

Recently, we met Kapopo and Kauhanga in Cavulucamue II. I knew that Jesus had unfinished business with these women, and I was positively anxious to return as soon as possible to hear what God had been doing in their lives since our encounter!

This weekend I had the opportunity, but not before we overcame a number of extraordinary obstacles! It usually takes about 6 hours to get to Kapopo and Kauhanga’s community from our house, but on this occasion, due to assisting with the health issues of a local pastor’s wife, a local event that the entire administration department were in attendance at, and then the alternator in our car going out, it took us 24 hours instead! It was an unexpectedly arduous journey, as journeys sometimes are in this part of the world, and if I’m really honest, I was really hoping our efforts would be rewarded [read: I was about to get really mad with something if they weren’t!]

We finally arrived in Cavulucamue II the following day, pulling up to the “gate” to the community at apparent rush hour 😉 Cavulucamue II is a community based on a massive farm project, and we happened to be arriving at the same time as many of the people returning from the above mentioned event who were riding in the back of a pick-up truck. The advantage to this was that no announcement was needed of our arrival- our presence was known from the get-go.

We hadn’t seen another vehicle in almost a day, and yet when we pulled up to the gate to Cavulucamue II, we had to wait in line to get in, lol!

Opening the “gate” to Cavulucamue II. The locals have to construct and deconstruct this opening every time they want to get a vehicle in or out, otherwise they risk loosing livestock.

We headed to the spot we camped at the previous week, and were surprised to find that the pick-up was also headed there. An amusing dialogue ensued between us and the driver as we both perceived that we were in each other’s spot! Who knew that in all the acres and acres of farmland we’d have each been headed for the same shady tree! Again, the timing and location actually worked to our advantage as we and the truck driver made a plan, and we ended up being right at the heart of where the community was coming and going, which made meeting with people really easy.

As we began setting up camp, I kept one eye out on the fields, looking for Kapopo and Kauhanga. It was only minutes later that Kauhanga appeared and I couldn’t help noticing that her countenance had completely changed since our first meeting. She was without her bulky coat this time, and I asked her how she was doing and how her heart was feeling. “It’s been beating normally!” she told me with a fresh joy on her face. “I feel different. Since that day that we prayed, I haven’t been experiencing the same heart pain.” I was overjoyed as she shared these things, and the difference in her body and in her mind was clearly evident! She was insistant that she wanted to continue in this peace and asked if we could pray again with her sometime that day. We agreed of course, and she headed off to work the fields for the morning.

Not long after her departure, Kapopo arrived, almost skipping to come and greet me. She was beaming, and I knew that God had been moving in her life since the previous week in a way that she was recognizing and receiving for herself. I wish I could share with you the look on her face! The previous 24 hours’ trials faded in that moment as listened in awe at what she shared. Her heart had also stilled, both physically and metaphorically. But more than that, she’d begun sharing this change with her family and friends, and they had come with her, hungry for this life-giving, peace-bringing presence too.

Sharing with Kapopo and her family and friends.

We chatted and then settled down in the shade to share more of the word of God. In this community, we’d previously shared about creation and the fall of man. Today, I felt to build on that by sharing about why God created man. I posed the question to our little group, “Why do you think Huku (God) created man?” A discussion followed, and the group agreed that he probably created people to make more people. Reproduction was His likely end goal, the group explained. I agreed that was definitely part of His plan, but before that, His desire was to make man in His image, to have relationship with Him. This concept of relationship with God, we have come to learn, is usually very far from the minds of most Mucubal people. It’s a new concept, one with few, if any, existing reference points. But with the Holy Spirit’s help, Kapopo and others are embracing this new life.

Towards the end I wanted to ask who else in the group wanted to receive God in their life. Agosto, our Kuvale translator friend, had barely finished his sentence before the whole group had responded, “Of course! That’s why we’re here!” I prayed for the group and set about learning their names, to be better acquainted the next time we come back. It’s no easy task for me to learn correctly Kuvale names as you’ll see below! They’re often 5-7 syllables long with combinations of consonants that we don’t use in English or Portuguese!

From left: Kantchholo (Kapopo’s step-daughter), Mupombah, Kauhunambanga (Kapopo’s daughter), Kapopo, Kakendu (Kapopo’s daughter), Moankhoatonkhombe and Kangiola all shared desires to receive God in their lives after learning of what God had done in Kapopo’s life!

This meeting was just one of four that we had during our one-night stay in Cavulucamue II this weekend. As soon as we wrapped up with one group, another had always appeared and would ask to hear the news that we were sharing too! I can’t fit all those stories in this one post, but needless to say, our time was extremely fruitful, and the hardships of getting out to this remote community, were so worth it! Even our little Faith and Ivy have been excitedly talking about how Jesus healed their Mucubal friends’ hearts!

David at a later meeting with a group in the riverbed.