Murray Hill United Methodist Church
Home Country: DRCongo, Africa
Salazaku (Cristal) Winu is a Global Mission Fellow of the United Methodist General Board of Global Ministries. She was commissioned in August 2016.
The Global Mission Fellows program takes young adults ages 20-30 out of their home environments and places them in new contexts for mission experience and service. The program has a strong emphasis on faith and justice. Global Mission Fellows become active parts of their new local communities. They connect the church in mission across cultural and geographical boundaries. They grow in personal and social holiness and become strong young leaders working to build just communities in a peaceful world.
Cristal is a citizen of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), born in Kinshasa, who was living in the United States—in Wisconsin—at the time she entered mission service. She is a member of the Waukesha (Wisconsin) First Assembly of God Church which is now called Bridge Church. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Ottawa University, Brookfield, Wisconsin. She has worked in sales and technical support. Her parents are Assemblies of God pastors in the DRC. Fluent in French, English, Lingala, and Swahili, Cristal took part in a mission trips while going to school in Kenya with a church group.
“My faith journey started at a young age,” Cristal says. “I was 11 years old when I decided to give my life to Christ and be baptized…To me, faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. My faith is reinforced by fellowship with Jesus regularly, relating to other believers, and understanding God’s word.” She treasures the inheritance of faith from her parents, but knows that Jesus walks with her when she is separated from earthly family.
Cristal was inspired to explore mission service by the examples of Global Mission Fellows she encountered. Offering herself in mission is a way to express gratitude to God “for all the goodness he has done for me.” This, she says, is a time in her life to grow, to get to know God more fully: “This is a moment that I want to be as close as I can be with God.”
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