I want to give you a quick update on what’s going on in ministry and life at the moment. 2022 has started with a BANG! An explosive start in a very good and positive way!
I don’t know if you’re anything like me when it comes to the shift between seasons, but change always fills me with a sense of expectation! What is God doing next? How can I be a part of it? If I run, I want my strides to match up with the pace of the Holy Spirit. This is my prayer and expectation for this year: that we keep in step with the Spirit, following His unction, resonating the frequencies of heaven, and manifesting the Kingdom.
I am doing something brand new, something unheard of.Isaiah 43:19-21
Even now, it sprouts and grows and matures. Don’t you perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and open up flowing streams in the desert. 20 Wild beasts, jackals, and owls will glorify me. For I supply streams of water in the desert and rivers in the wilderness to satisfy the thirst of my people, my chosen ones, 21 so that you, whom I have shaped and formed for myself, will proclaim my praise.
I haven’t sent out a ‘formal’ update since December last year, but I have updated partners via news bursts. If you have missed out on these and would like to receive them, you can sign up RIGHT HERE!
One Tribe Conference
From the 2nd to the 10th of January, we had a very successful Overland Missions Conference held in Orlando. About 450 God-hungry and mission-minded people attended this life-changing conference. Over 250 were from the OM Team, and those soon to be joining the OM Team. Others who attended were Pastors, parents, friends of Overlanders, and people who support the mission endeavours.
join our team
Our team’s global footprint covers over 150,000 square miles in 4 continents. We are ACTIVELY adding to our team, and there’s room for you! Whether you feel called to join our team on the ground full time, or come out with us on Expedition — WE’D LOVE TO HAVE YOU! If you’d like more information on how you can our team, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Twenty years ago, Overland Missions intentionally launched into Zambia for its strategic location, as it shares a border with eight other nations. The plan has always been to raise disciples and send them into the surrounding nations. Zambia is a country full of adventure, especially when it comes to finding isolated people groups and sharing the message of the new creation. Today, Zambia is the most radical example of what it looks like for a nation to be in the midst of revival and a viral movement of God. The Gospel has touched everyone, from the president and his cabinet members to over 200 traditional chiefs. This movement represents millions of people who had limited access to the Gospel, that are now saturated in the presence of God.
ministry to chiefs
There are 274 chiefs in Zambia that rule over millions of people in their respective chiefdoms. Traditionally, these chiefs turn to witchcraft and animism due to a lack of access to the Gospel. The goal of our ministry to chiefs is to instil a chaplaincy program by training individuals, chosen by the chief, to be his direct spiritual advisor. This is not just a program, but it is a move of God that enforces the Kingdom of God among the kingdoms of men. It is the job of the chaplains to disciple their chiefs, establish unity among the churches and people, and steer the chiefdom in the direction the Lord desires. In 2021, the chaplaincy team trained 62 more chaplains in Zambia, creating a total of 211 acting chaplains. In addition, the chaplaincy team has started follow-up discipleship trainings in each province of Zambia. This has become a large success, allowing the chaplains to receive support, further training, and be spiritually equipped by the team and fellow chaplains. Five discipleship trainings were completed this year in five different provinces. One chaplain, Victor, was trained in 2020 and has since formed a close relationship with the chief he serves. Victor was recently appointed as the head of the chief’s Ministry of Lands and now has authority over the delegation of property for the entire chiefdom. This chief has also given him the power to handle all religious and spiritual matters within his chiefdom. Victor is eradicating ungodly practices, establishing interdenominational pastoral fellowship groups, and acting as a mediator for the chief.
In 2022, the chaplaincy program will be going to expand internationally into Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Both countries have similar tribal leadership structures, allowing the program to be easily transferred to these nations. The Emperor of the Lunda and Luvale tribes in the DRC has already selected a chaplain along with two other chiefs. The Kingdom of God is being established in the chiefdoms and the tribal leaders are submitting to the authority of the King of kings.
keeping it real
You might remember that I’m currently pursuing my Bachelors in Theology through the Global Theological University. I’m six months into a three-year degree, and though it’s had some challenges, I’m so excited that I am already able to put my studies to practice in the foreign mission field. I ordered some of my study supplies and second hand books from Amazon, but due to Covid, their worldwide shipping had some significant delays. Through the kindness of MANY of my colleagues, I shipped my textbooks to Georgia (USA), then to Zambia (where it was stuck for 3 months) and finally, picked it up at OR Tambo International Airport as some other colleagues were on their way back to the States.
Pursuing a degree certainly looks different now than it did in 2010 when I was fresh out of high school, and it has been an incredible adventure! If you would specifically like to contribute to my studies, you can use the FNB banking details with “GTU” in your donation reference along with your name.
home, sweet home
Our team finished up the move to our new place in Kolwezi just days before I flew back to South Africa to spend Christmas with family and prepare some logistical things for the year ahead! Less than 2% of the roads in Congo are paved (tar roads), and this move to Kolwezi literally places us at the end of the road in Southern DRC. Many unreached and neglected villages lie beyond this city, and this is the area into which our team is now pioneering ministry. Our team has been given several Divine connections to new chiefs, villages, and clinics that we are excited to follow up with once I return to Congo and the roads begin to dry out as rainy season winds down.
There are several things to be thankful for with the new location: More space! Our new rental property has three houses, allowing the growing Kaonga family a space of their own (they welcomed their son, Sepiso in December), a house where Julie (and eventually myself) will live (with separate bathrooms, yay!) The third house on the property will be our guest house for Expeditions (we are hosting TWO Expeditions to DRC this year), ministry partners, and visitors. Another BIG WIN for this property is that the drinking water is safe — straight out of the tap! Fresh (and safe) water is a major issue in DRC, and previously we had to filter every drop of water used for cooking or drinking. Our house currently has a mattress on the floor, and four plastic chairs — finding basic kitchen appliances and household items is a challenge, as it’s hard to come by and disproportionately expensive. We are excited to make this new property a dynamic base from which we launch the ministry deeper into the interior of the Democratic Republic of Congo!
Our family has great reason to celebrate — my sister and brother in law announced that I’ll soon be an aunt of TWO munchkins!
Being away from my family with long-term missions often makes it feel as if I’m missing out on the small things of every day family life. It’s WORTH IT though, because I get to sow and invest in other families and introduce them to the love of Christ. It’s no small task, but the Lord is so FAITHFUL in making all things bear fruit when we step out in faith.
I pray that today you’ll be reminded that you’re part of a family that prays for you, that celebrates with you, you that mourns with you, that holds your arms up, and that encourages you to be rooted in the Word.
- 2 to 5 January – Overland Missions Annual Conference in Florida, USA
- 11 to 27 January – KwaZulu Natal
- 3 to 12 February – Vaal Triangle
- 21 to 28 February – Overland Missions African Staff Conference in Mozambique
- 4 to 5 March – Victory Weekend at Every Nation Faith City
- 11 to 18 March – USA Mission Team in North West, South Africa
- 24 to 25 March – Francis Chan at my home church
- 28 March to 10 April – reconnaissance trip to Coffee Bay with the aim to plant an Overland Missions base in South Africa
- 14 April – preliminary date to launch into the Democratic Republic of Congo
In 2021, in the midst of Covid, an opportunity opened up to spend three months boots-on-the-ground in DR Congo, and it has been an immersive learning experience! I’ve discovered so much about the Congolese culture, improved my French, and I’m learning more effective ways to do ministry among these wonderful people! In 2022 we are starting a BRAND-NEW mission base deeper into the interior in DR Congo, launching a team in Kolwezi and the surrounding chiefdoms. As we grow and our team develops, we’re discovering more specific needed resources to advance the ministry.
Here are some things that would give us more freedom and greatly improve our trips in the bush for ministry:
Vehicle upgrades: I am currently fundraising to purchase a Toyota Landcruiser in order to take on the rough roads in the backcountry, expanding ministry in these unreached areas.
Here are a few other, more personal needs that I’m working towards:
Monthly support: in order to maintain a “fully funded” status and be effectively funded for full time missions, I have an outstanding $2000 in monthly support to raise in order to meet ministry needs. This support goal includes all ministry expenses, as well as personal expenses for travel, and logistical costs. I would greatly appreciate it if you would consider joining me in a monthly financial partnership.
Battery system and solar panels: The current reality in DRC is that there is ZERO electricity 6 out of 7 days per week — unscheduled and unannounced. Setting up a portable solar panel system will allow me to keep essentials like my phone and GPS running, while also providing much-needed light for cooking and teaching. The rainy season often means that it is overcast and pouring with rain for several days at a time, and a battery system will allow me to have a backup option.
Support team growth
Right now, my partnership team doesn’t fully cover my entire budget, so I am praying and believing God for more supporters to partner with! If you are not part of my monthly partnership team and would like to be, it would be a blessing to share in this ministry together!
If you have any desire to sow into any of these needs, I could move forward with them a lot faster! I have a ministry fund specifically for expenses like these. The details for giving are listed below.
- Go to Overlandmissions.com/donate
- Insert the amount and frequency (monthly or once-off specific) you want to donate. You can donate in USD, ZAR, or the currency of your choice.
- Designate in the memo box: 3282 or my full name (Cornelia van Biljon) as reference.
you are a part of this team
As always, a grand THANK YOU to each of you! I’m so blessed by your encouragement and prayer as our team continues to believe in a great move of God here in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, and my home country, South Africa!
Because of you, and your support in every way, we can participate in the mission — to see the sick healed, the oppressed set free, the dead raised, and the Good News proclaimed to those who are without hope.
Through your faithful partnership in finances, prayer, and support this ministry can grow, bear fruit, and share in the joy of the harvest! Thank you for sowing into this team, and specifically into my life! Because of your commitment, remote communities are reached with the Gospel of the Kingdom — thank you for being a part of that! Thank you to all of you who sow and continue sowing into my life and the lives of others who are growing in Christ, receiving Christ, and are sent out by Christ.
I love each one of you and am so excited for what the Lord is doing and going to do through your lives as well. Giving it all might require finances, time, and sacrifice, but it’s worth it. He is worth it. The greatest gift was given when Jesus laid His own life down for us. Everything else falls short. He deserves eternal glory!
Thank you for your continued prayers, and love, and for sowing so generously into my life! May the Lamb receive the honour and praise that is due to His Name! 🙌🏼
Love in Christ