January 17, 2018

Conferences near goal for Congo rape survivors’ center

By Kathy L. Gilbert
Jan. 17, 2018 | UMNS

United Methodist conferences are nearing their goal to build a center that will give Congolese rape survivors a chance to heal and overcome the crippling stigma that makes them outcasts.

Three U.S. United Methodist conferences partnering with the East Congo Conference are just $33,000 away from a $350,000 fundraising target.

East Congo has been called the “rape capital of the world” — a place where rape is used a weapon of war. The California-Pacific, Memphis and Tennessee conferences are working to build the Mama Lynn Center in Kindu. The center is named for Lynn McAlilly, the spouse of Nashville Area Bishop William T. (Bill) McAlilly.

The Rev. Neelley Hicks, founder of Harper Hill Global, is co-coordinator of the campaign, Congo Women Arise, serving alongside the Rev. Bill Lovell.