“I was rescued”


In 2009, LIFE International held a training conference in Africa, attended by more than 500 people. After that gathering, 67 life-giving ministries were started, and thousands of lives have been transformed in the years since.

Here is Joyce and Abraham’s story, in Joyce’s own words.

My mother and father died of HIV/AIDS. I was alone. Relatives were picked to adopt me. But soon I was abused. My uncle threatened me and forced me to have sex. When it was discovered that I was HIV-positive and pregnant out of incest, my aunt was so angry. She started punching me and starving me, not giving me any food. All sorts of bad names I was called: “Animal!” “Dog!” They said I was not worthy to live. “Just go throw yourself in the river. You are nothing. Just go kill yourself.”

They chased me out of the village into the bush to die. They sent me to the river to be eaten by crocodiles. I was abandoned. I was powerless. When I was being chased, I did not like my pregnancy. I thought, it is better to have this child die. I thought it was better to die than to live.

In my village in Zambia there is a very deep and strong river. There is a place where often you hear of people being eaten by the crocodiles. I was there—crying near the river. I was thinking of jumping into the river to die. But a woman came. I didn’t even know her name. She followed me up there and held me and said, “What are you doing here. This is very dangerous.” I started crying. I could not even talk. She still just held me.

She just said, “I cannot leave you here. Let me take you to a place where you can find rescue. Let me take you to the children of God so you and the baby can survive.” She brought me to the Khumi Center. There I was given everything for upkeep for the pregnancy. I was rescued. And I decided to change my mind, to live and to have my baby live.

The day the baby was born, I named him Abraham—a child of God. He was waiting for this moment. Now I love this child. As soon as he starts walking, I want him to go to school. I want him to be a man of God. I know by faith, Abraham will grow, with the help of God, to help my country. I was empowered. And now I am able to start a business, and have a home, and raise my son. I thank God for bringing me to the center. Without it, I would be no more.

The woman who intervened to rescue Joyce and Abraham, yet unborn at that point, was Iness Simwawa, the director of the Khumi Center (in Kitwe, Zambia), one of the 67 ministries started after the 2009 conference.

Iness is a friend of LIFE International, and she works closely with Edward and Barbra Mwansa, our key strategic partners in the region.

Through the tireless dedication of individuals like Iness, Edward, Barbra—and thousands more in scores of nations—the Bride of Christ is advancing God’s global life movement!

LIFE International partners with these Gospel leaders to multiply life-giving ministry wherever abortion exists.