Rev. Christine Ikete is visiting Galesburg this week from the Democratic Republic of Congo, the native country of many Galesburg residents.
Ikete is a pastor with the Disciple of Christ denomination, which has long had strong ties to the DRC.
There’s currently a congregation of Congolese worshippers that hold weekly services and meetings at First Christian Church.
Ikete will meet with that congregation, attending prayer services and then will be the speaker at First Christian’s regular services on Sunday, as well as the Congolese service.
In the Congo, Ikete serves as the head of the women’s department for Global Ministries.
She tells WGIL her overall work is to change women’s situation in the Congo, and a big part of how she does that is by training females in skills like using a sewing machine.
“If they work to make the dress and the clothes then they have money for their family,” Ikete says.
Global Ministries website says that empowered women and girls lead to a world where women are less likely to be abused, more likely to be educated, and more likely to have control over their reproductive choices.
She will also talk about her work in front of the Disciples of Christ General Assembly conference in Des Moines next weekend.
She’s brought clothing with her, financed through Global Ministries microcredit program, that she’ll sell at a meeting of Disciple’s women.
Also as a part of her itinerary, she attended the Knox Prairie Community Dinner Thursday night and will visit with women at the Galesburg Rescue Mission.