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Joseph: Hope is More than Circumstances

What happened?

Traveling to-and-from care programs regularly involves dangerous crossings through rebel-held territories of Congo. While returning home from one of these care programs (overseeing an expansion and addition of more children to the care programs) — Joseph and his team were ambushed.

In the ambush, Joseph was shot five times (hitting the spine and lung), beaten, and left for dead. The first days were critical and it was a miracle that he survived… yet the incident left Joseph paralyzed and in need of extensive rehabilitative care. Another teammate, Habu, caught glass in the eye when the windshield exploded from gunshots. Others in the car were not shot and escaped without major physical injury.

A Hope Not Dictated by Circumstance

“You tried to harm me, but God made it turn out for the best, so that he could save all these people, as he is now doing.”


October 2020:

Joseph continues to recover and progress in his physical therapy. Being with his family has been a shot of adrenaline for this already joyfilled and hopeful leader. Joseph

Joseph is back at the help — leading EI Congo and serving 1,800 war-affected youth. As always, Joseph serves as an inspiration to us all!

Joseph participated in Teen Trauma Healing training in October with our PLC team. Exile was selected by the American Bible Society to be one of the first organizations across the globe to be trained in this new curriculum to provide trauma care to teens!

August 2020:

After a full recovery from typhoid and malaria, Joseph was FINALLY able to fly home and be reunited with his wife and children! Praise God!

July 2020:

Joseph was recently diagnosed with typhoid and malaria, but he is recovering well! He was not admitted to a hospital due to precautions around contracting COVID-19. Doctors and nurses have been visiting him in his hotel to provide treatment. Please pray for a full recovery soon and a flight opportunity so he can return to his hometown of Goma.

June 2020:

Due to ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, Joseph was required to complete a 14-day quarantine, which he completed on June 2nd and is currently in Kinshasa awaiting approval to fly to his hometown of Goma.

May 2020:

During his time in South African, Joseph has been preaching to the staff and patients at the hospital every Sunday. Twenty-five people have accepted Christ while Joseph was there and started sharing the gospel!

Joseph has been calling into Exile International’s leadership meetings with our Congolese team to provide wisdom and insight from a distance.

Joseph flew from South Africa to Kinshasa on May 19th.

March 2020:

Due to the spread of COVID-19 and mandatory three-week lockdown, no visas will be issued in this time for Joseph to return home. We pray for the situation in Africa to stabilize soon so he can obtain his visa. Throughout all the uncertainty, we pray for Joseph to not lose hope. We pray for continued, FULL healing, in Jesus’ name!

February 28, 2020:

Joseph’s doctor reports he is walking 10-20 meters on a walker. As a reminder, he was given a 5% chance of ever walking again! We are praising the Lord!

January 22, 2020:

Joseph is in good spirits and is known around the hospital as “Pastor.” He is leading church services with his fellow patients from his hospital bed.

January 21, 2020:

Joseph needs our prayer. He tried again to begin his rehab regime and the wound again broke open. He’s in the bed most of the day. He’s been there two months and has been unable to do his needed rehab to help him regain mobility. It feels like the enemy is active. Stay tuned and keep praying!!

September 24, 2019:

From Matthew Williams, Co-Founder of Exile International:

Last week I was able to be with Joseph in the Rwandan hospital where he is still receiving careSitting at Joseph’s bedside, I saw the embodiment of faith and hope! Physically speaking — Joseph remains paralyzed (with only slight sensation below the waist). The doctors have given him a minimal chance of ever walking again, and he has a long, long road of rehab ahead. Yet...

His faith and spiritual joy in the face of such adversity are unshaken! You cannot keep this man down. I can only describe his attitude, faith and joy as vibrant! What an honor to have him as a brother and partner in ministry. Christ has used this man, his leadership, and his sacrifices to bring the gospel and healing to thousands of child survivors and orphans of war. He is an inspiration!

Here are several powerful quotes from Joseph. I hope “hearing” from your brother in Christ inspires you as much as it has me:

“Can you imagine? I could have not lived. But because of the grace of God, I am alive! He did good things for me. For me, what He did is enough… Can you imagine? I am alive and even speaking!⁣”

“I have hope. And the legs… He will do it. Believing is the key. I know now that big word we always teach the children — ‘believe’. It is for this time.”

“And the healing is going on. God is doing everything for me. Even if my legs do not work, I will be there to work for God, lead the children, and encourage the youth in Jesus’s name. I have been blessed to work with these children for 15 years. I think God will add 15 more.”

“Please tell those friends who are praying that I am hopeful. May God only repay them for praying. God bless you forever.”
– Joseph


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