Home Inspiration I tasted God’s grace- Kwagala

I tasted God’s grace- Kwagala

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Growing up in Nabweru slum in a Kampala suburb, in the hands of a single mother of four, Elia Kwagala (commonly known as Elija Love)’s childhood was characterised by poverty and starvation. Now a journalist, Church administrator and director, he shares his story with Lillian Ntege.

Background
Elia Nkwagala is a journalist, head of the production at Worship House Church in Nansana, Kampala, and director of Elohim Care Foundation and Elohim Junior School.

He is also the founder of Elohim music school Uganda, located in Nabweru, Wakiso district. Before receiving these blessings, Kwagala was a struggling young man whose family could not afford a meal at times.

Kwagala says he was raised by a single mother of four who could hardly afford to take care of him and his siblings, “But she always tried her best,” he says.

Throughout his childhood and early adult life, Kwagala and his family lived in Nabweru slums, where his mother earned from cleaning offices in nearby areas; sometimes making just Shs1,000 a day, from which she had to buy food for the family.

“Some days, we had to stay hungry the whole day, waiting for her to get paid at the end of the day. Life was really hard,” Kwagala says.

But food was not the only problem, they also struggled with housing. He says rainy days were a nightmare because their house always flooded due to poor drainage.

While he grew up in starvation, Kwagala is now feeding others in need. (Photo/Courtesy)

Alternative options
When he clocked 15 years and completed primary seven, Kwagala says his mother advised him to start working so that he could contribute to the family income.

She gave him Shs10,000 to buy passion fruits, which he hawked around Kampala city. However, the business also proved challenging due to low demand.

“At times I would move a long journey and would not get anyone to buy from me. I would spend the whole day without eating or drinking anything. There is a time I contemplated drinking water from a trench,” Kwagala says.

“That day I cried the whole journey from town to Nabweru while carrying my sack of passion fruits. When I reached home, I found it had rained and water had filled up the whole house. All the beds were covered with water. I just slept on the bed, wet as it was.”

In the wee hours of the night, he heard his mother collect water. All he had to do was to pray to God for a breakthrough for his family.

Going to Church
While in senior one at Nabweru Secondary School, Kwagala thought of looking for a place where he could get love, food, comfort and happiness, other than school and home. The first thing that came to his mind was the Church.

The nearest Church to him was Worship House Church, Nansana. He had always passed by on his way to town, and everyone on the premises looked fulfilled. So, he chose to join them.

Kwagala was welcomed with love, a thing that eventually held him within the Church family as he learned more about God.

Over time, he started serving in the Church on Sundays. “I found solace and felt like I had found my purpose. So, I would study during weekdays and serve in Church on Sunday,” he says.

Starting production
One Sunday, the person who was responsible for recording Pr Wilson Bugembe’s preaching session was absent, and Kwagala was asked to do it on his behalf.

“I did a very great job and they liked it. I then joined video production and started getting connections from the audience to go do photography and video production at their parties. I started earning some money and life changed,” Kwagala says.

By that time, he was completing senior six. He started to acquire more skills in order to master video production.

Kwagala later enrolled at St Lawrence University, where he pursued a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and communication.

While there, he paid his tuition and helped his mother financially from his video production business.

“God had heard my prayers and He was faithful to me. He paved the way for me,” the 2018 graduate says.

Kwagala has invested his time and energy to grow his video production business. (Photo/Courtesy)

Bigger roles
With time, Kwagala was appointed the head of production at the Church when the office holder left. Since then, his video production career grown.

Kwagala has produced videos like Emigugu, Oluzzi, and One Minute; all featuring Pr Wilson Bugembe, Akikoze neera featuring Damasco Sesanga, Gagamago Kinene’s Anampanguza, Pr Twina Herbert’s Njagala Engeri, and Dan Wiz’s Ye Yesu, among others.

He attributes his success to patience, perseverance and mostly, the hand of God.

“With all I have achieved, I decided to give back to my community, and that is how I started the schools,” Kwagala says.
At his foundation, Kwagala has taken care of over 300 vulnerable children.

He is grateful to God for enabling him to support his mother and those children.

“My mother no longer lacks anything and I am able to pay school fees and provide for my siblings. Glory to God.”
Joan Nabaggala, Kwagala’s sister, says God has blessed her brother to bless others.

“He always ensures to put a smile on our faces and everyone around him. I am so proud to have him as a brother and always thank God for his life,” Nabaggala says.

Kwagala encourages people to work hard, and pray and trust God because He makes a way even where there is no way.

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