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Zahara Kawje Ali featured in “Mennonites Everywhere” video


July 12, 2012
-Dan Dyck

Winnipeg, Man. — Zahara Kwaje Ali is a Mennonite who proudly declares her affiliation with Peace Mennonite Church in Regina, Sask. in the latest installment of the Mennonites Everywhere video series produced by Mennonite Church Canada.

Ali arrived in Canada in 1993 with her husband and seven children as refugees from Southern Sudan. Soon, she was attending Peace Mennonite Church and getting acquainted with the congregation. In 2000 she became a member and began volunteering on a variety of projects, later serving as a deacon in the small house church.

Today, Ali is working with Children First, a program of Regina’s Open Door Society that provides in-home support for new Canadians.

Florence Driedger of Peace Mennonite Church who provided on-site support for Ali during the filming process for the video says, “She is continually helping out someone while at the same time working, being a grandmother, sending money to educate orphan nieces in Africa while she waits for them to come to Canada under her sponsorship, and on and on.”

 Ali took the production of the video in stride, affirming Driedger’s assertion that “She is always herself.”

“Zahara is an ambassador for house churches. When Zahara went to visit her parents in Africa before they died and were far from their home church, she suggested they take the lead in Bible study for a group of people who were refugees far from home.  She suggested they did not need a church building to worship and study the Bible. Her life is not a pretty one, but one of service, proudly sharing her affiliation with Peace Mennonite and inviting other new comers to Peace,” says Driedger.

Ali, who lost her husband in 2007, says “Life is full of goodness, but it’s even better when we help each other.”