There was an atmosphere of joy and celebration at the Bible Israel Church, located in the Majengo area on the outskirts of Narok town.
The church had organized a special prayer session for Anne Wangoi, who had returned home after an astonishing 17 years of absence.
In 2006, Wangoi’s mother, Rachael Wanjiku, faced a moment of despair during a domestic dispute, leading to the disappearance of her then-10-year-old daughter.
The young girl, who was 10 years of age then, vanished without a trace, leaving her mother in a state of anguish.
Wanjiku now speaks with immense happiness, declaring that reuniting with her daughter is the most joyous moment of her life, despite the trials and relentless efforts to locate her, even within church circles.
Wangoi, her daughter, appeared to be containing her excitement, touched by the sense of belonging she now felt as she expressed her happiness at being back home.
17-year long journey
Wangoi recounted her journey, revealing that she had initially traveled to Nairobi with a friend, parting ways with her there.
However, not long after, fate intervened, and a kind-hearted stranger directed her to Othaya town in Nyeri County.
There, she found refuge at the Bewomi Beautiful Worship Ministry rehabilitation home, which is overseen by Joseph Muthendeki.
Wangoi shared how, despite numerous unexpected challenges, she was fortunate to receive an education from primary to secondary school.
Additionally, Wangoi gained valuable hospitality and sewing skills during her time at the rehabilitation home.
Now equipped with a trade, her prayer and aspiration are to secure employment so that she can assist her aging mother in achieving a prosperous future.
Mary Njoki, who had worked alongside Wangoi as a head cook at Silent Lodge in Othaya Nyeri town in 2020, fondly remembered encouraging Wangoi with the belief that she would reunite with her family in Narok.
Lydia Wairimu, Njoki’s mother, and Hellen Murunya, a teacher at Masikonte Primary School, took on the mission of tracing Wangoi’s family.
Their efforts, combined with a 90-day fast and prayer by the Israel Church, eventually bore fruits of Wangoi’s return.
Pastor Stephen Wa Wanjiku, who ministers at the church, emphasized the importance of prayer within the family unit while cautioning parents against provoking their children.
Pilot Khayemba, the children’s officer of Narok County, stressed the significance of reporting missing or found children as promptly as possible.
He cited an alarming average of ten such cases each month, often attributed to irresponsible parents and guardians.
Subsequently, family members gathered for a meal at a friend’s residence to learn more about Wangoi’s remarkable journey.
A statistics report released by the Kenyan government in May of this year revealed that approximately 6,000 children go missing each year.
Furthermore, a report by the Red Cross Society in Africa in August 2020 indicated that half of the world’s total of 44,000 missing persons were children.
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