2013 was the year WEC reached the milestone of turning 100. From its beginning, WEC has remained faithful to the Lord’s commission to preach the gospel “to the ends of the earth”. Today, with the job not yet finished, 2000 workers in 70 nations continue with this same purpose.
Looking back though, what was it like 100 years ago? In places like Africa, pioneering mission was very basic in 1913. Excerpts from the diary of CT Studd, the founder of WEC, bear testimony to this. Without the benefit of a pizza van and an ambulance hiding somewhere, CT shares in matter-of-fact fashion about the hardships he and a companion faced surviving, “Man vs Wild” style, the extreme life endangering wildlife and people of the Belgian Congo.
Mahagi – May 5, 1913 “The steamer across the Lake Albert from Butiaba to Mahagi started at 8am, and we reached Mahagi at noon. Mr Gribble and I had porridge for supper, and a turn round in the bush to try for a buck as we had precious little food. We got nothing, and as there was a possibility of meeting lions, we returned. At night we were plagued with flies of all kinds which provided the treble to the grunting of crocodiles. The lake was only twenty yards from our tent. It was not altogether nice to have them so close, and I took the precaution to keep a good fire burning between my bed and the lake.”
Jankoba – Saturday, May 24, 1913 “Porters left at 6am, Alfred and I stayed to read and then pray, then left cycling. Gribble had ridden the donkey and gone with porters. We came down the hill and then found two roads – which one should we take? Gribble had left no mark. We decided to take a very steep one to the right; we went along for a good way, but finding no trace of the donkey we returned and took the other road. We went down a regular precipice with our cycles, having dismounted, and even then putting on the brakes, we could hardly control them. Then we had to ascend a similarly steep hill; it was not pushing as much as hoisting our cycles, and again and again similar ascents and descents. Thus we walked for three hours passing through innumerable villages of the warlike Balinda tribe, who were delighted at seeing the first cycles ever over those regions.”
“Suddenly, we came across an Indian trader returning. He said that road did not lead to Kilo