Pastor Dongo could sometimes make me laugh without saying a word and I loved to make him belly laugh when he was trying to be serious like in this picture.
In Rev 21:21, we see a visual description of what Pastor Dongo is seeing right now. “And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; every several gate was of one pearl: and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass.”
When Dongo was going through his cancer treatments we would walk every morning and talk about Eternal things and how that the "sufferings" of this life (Rom 8:18) are not be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. This time when I read this verse about the streets of the city in Heaven being like transparent glass, this image became more real to me. I picture Dongo with his new body, no longer in pain, walking/tip toeing/dancing on the transparent glass streets looking around in amazement at the things he is seeing and read about in his Bible wearing that big smile of his.
One of my favorite Dongo stories is my first trip into the bush in Uganda. I had never been to Africa and didn’t really know what to expect. He took me to a healing service in the bush. People had come from miles around to get prayer. We were sitting together and people were in a long line for prayer and some brought their sick. We had been there for several hours when a woman brought a young girl about 6-7 years old that was feverish with malaria and could barely walk. I was praying for a pregnant woman and when I had finished, I looked up and saw Dongo sitting there by himself just holding this sick child. It was as if time had stopped. He looked up at me while caressing her with his hand to her face. She was asleep with a noticeable peace on her face. She awakened for a moment, looked up at him and said something to him like “da da”in their language.
I asked Dongo what she said, and smiling, he told me that she had called him, “daddy”. He looked me square in the eyes, leaned forward and said, "Doudy, this is what it's all about. It's about helping the children of Uganda." I was struck by that moment. He stopped everything he was doing to attend to this sick little girl he had just met. We didn’t know each other that well at the time, and I thought wow, this guy is the real deal.
Pastor Dongo considered all of you Buyamba supporters to be his extended family and co-laborers in Christ. His vision to help the orphans and needy children of Uganda has touched all of us in a unique way. I think the important thing for us who are still here to “remember” is this. Those who have finished their race are in better place at home in the presence of Jesus (2 Cor 5:8). It is now up to us to run with endurance our own race until we see Dongo again.
The orphans and needy children of Uganda have lost one of their biggest advocates who stood in the gap for them. Those of us who loved Pastor Dongo will continue with his vision to stand in the gap where he stood for the many children he loved so dearly.
Dongo and I had a lot of good times together over the past 10 years that I will always cherish. He had a favorite saying each time he would leave to go home. "l'll see you when you see me."
I look forward to the blessed hope (in Jesus) that I will see our friend Dongo again when my time here on earth is done.
--- David Dimas, President, Uganda Buyamba
"Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of the saints." - Psalm 116:15
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.” - John 12:24
"His Lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”- Matt 25:21
How do you begin to say good-bye to such a friend, mentor, leader and co-laborer who God has used to change your life forever? My answer lies only in the hope of heaven when there is no more separation from those we love…including Jesus. All will be right then and all will make sense…and death will not be allowed to rob us again of someone we loved.
It feels too soon to lose this giant man of God…but when could we think of a time that it would be ok for him to leave. My heart breaks over and over again as it sinks in. I believe grief is the correct response to the loss of Pastor Dongo. His life has changed so many of us. I know more of the Father's heart in heaven because of Pastor Dongo's heart here on earth.
But he would want us to wipe our eyes and roll up our sleeves and be about the work of Jesus…maybe as we each begin to do that, in time, we will again feel that spirit of connectedness with a man who has taught us so much about living.
I grieve for my dear sister Florence in Uganda and my sweet Worship and all the beautiful children of the Dongo family, and of God Cares School.
My prayers are with you. I love you and cherish you.
I am grateful for the life of this man… I am looking forward to heaven more now for you are in it ,Pastor Dongo, good-bye for now sweet friend, "I'll see you when I see you."