Allister de Plessis is the Regional Manager for the Leprosy Mission in Central England, the Midlands & North Wales. 

He has prepared a virtual service that churches can use anytime from now to the 24th April which includes two hymns, Bible readings, a Bible thought from Allister, prayers and a short five minute video by Dame Darcey Bussell, (the former principal dancer at The Royal Ballet and, of course, Strictly fame!) in which she speaks of the plight of those with leprosy. 

The date is significant as up to this date all donations will be matched by the UK government so a gift of £24 (which would cure someone with leprosy) will be doubled to £48. 

You can donate here.

The full service with hymns (33 minutes) can be found here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1H9VemS-aD4G5VutZiSxbDOBq5nTr1seQ/view

A slightly shortened virtual service without hymns is 27 minutes - you can watch this on YouTube.

You can watch the five minute film introduced by Darcey Bussell also on YouTube. In it she talks about Zaina who was a young mother who noticed discoloured patches on her skin but didn't know what they were, but when they became visible to other people in her home village of Namatua, they recognised the signs of leprosy. Because of age-old myths surrounding the disease, some of the villagers banished her to the forest, chanting “go to the bush” over and over.

Together with her young son, Zaina was forced to flee and a group of villagers came to take her little boy away leaving Zaina heartbroken. 

By the grace of God a stranger found Zaina in the forest. He built her a hut to shelter from the rain and took her to a health post where her leprosy was cured. Leprosy Changemakers, trained by The Leprosy Mission, were able to go to Namatua and teach the villagers about leprosy and how it is easily cured.

Zaina was able to take back her future into her own hands and is now a thriving member of her community. Determined others shouldn't have to suffer a similar fate, Zaina has trained as a Leprosy Changemaker.

The Unconditional Appeal sees churches in the UK partner with communities in Mozambique to build community hubs from which to lead the fight against leprosy and where people affected by leprosy are welcomed unconditionally.

Will you become a Leprosy Changemaker today by sharing Jesus's unconditional love for people with leprosy?

Thanks to UK Aid Match donation will be doubled up until April 24. 

It costs £24 to cure someone with leprosy so this will be doubled to £48 enabling two people to be found and treated.  

It costs £70 to train a Leprosy Changemaker. These people are trained to recognise the early signs of the disease so by giving £35, your donation becomes £70. Changemaker's act as a supportive friend who can travel with the person affected to a healthpost or make contact with a Community Health Worker who can give the cure. You can donate via the Leprosy Mission website here.

‘We love because He first loved us.’

1 John 4:19 (NIV)