Gracewater Gala to be held August 24By CATHRYN CARTWRIGHT,
The third Annual Gracewater Gala is set to take place on August 24 and members of the organization are excited to share its progress and future plans to bring more clean water and the "Living Water" to countries in Southern Africa.
Since 2015, Gracewater has successfully completed 17 well projects and have served 6,000 people with clean water across two countries. Around 1,900 people were able to hear the Gospel at the well dedication services, and 185 people have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
"One of the big things this year is that we have started working in Zambia, as well as Zimbabwe," said Nick King, one of the founders of Gracewater. "Some other big news is that we are looking at adding our first ever missionaries to the team who will be helping us with some of the logistics."
The missionaries, Herman and Elzarie Fourie, are originally from the country of South Africa, but have been missionaries in Zimbabwe since 2012.
"They are doing a program called Foundations for Farming where they go into areas and teach them how to farm more efficiently," said Ann King, wife of Nick King and another founder of Gracewater. "Since they are already in these communities, and are seeing the need for wells, they can contact us and we can help with that while they minister to the people and spread the Gospel."
Herman and Elzarie Fourie are just some of the special guests who will be featured at the Gracewater Gala on Saturday, August 24, beginning at 6 p.m.
Christian Singer and Artist Nichole Nordeman will also be performing at the gala as the musical entertainment.
"Nichole will perform for a little over an hour, and in between songs she will give a testimony of how those songs came about," said Ann. "She has been featured on KLOVE Radio with her songs "Every Season" and "Slow Down."
Food for the Gala will be prepared by Richard Pickens and Roger Jones, who have been involved with Gracewater for many years.
"We will also have a silent auction again this year," said Ann. "All of the shops in town usually give something fun, everything from jewelry and paintings to furniture. And there will also be some farming and outdoor related items in the auction as well. We try to make it interesting for everyone."
Nick added that the most important part about the Gala is that all donations and funds raised will go directly to building more water wells in these countries in Southern Africa.
"One hundred percent of all donor dollars are going straight into drilling wells," he said. "I think that it makes a lot of difference when people know what their donations are going to."
Nick said that the Gracewater team is constantly working to bring more wells to the areas most in need in Zimbabwe and Zambia, and will be overseeing more well projects on their upcoming trips to Africa this November and next February.
Earlier this year, Nick and Ann made the decision to take their three children to Africa to see what Gracewater is all about. McCarty, 10, Virginia, 9, and Isabel, 5, were given the experience of a lifetime where they were able to help witness to children their own age, living in different circumstances on the other side of the world.
"We are in this together, and the Lord allowed us to go and minister as a family," Nick said.
"It also grows the vision because the children see the impact of what we are doing and the importance of it," Ann said. "They really loved it, and they can't wait to go back again."
One thing that Nick hopes will happen in the future for Gracewater is to open up a program where other families can come and participate in some of the mission programs in Africa.
"I think there are a lot of Christian families that are looking for outlets that are designed around mission work," he said. "If you really visit with families that have done mission work in the past, you will find that they have the greatest growth amongst their family. We have a passion for trying to connect people with their family and connect them with God through Gracewater."
Tickets for the Gracewater Gala are $50 per person. Donations are still being accepted for the event and for the silent auction. To purchase a ticket, please call Valerie Pickens at 662-571-5366. Monetary donations to Gracewater may be made online at Gracewater.org, or by mailing a check to "Gracewater,” 1660 Hwy 16 East, Yazoo City, MS, 39194.