MISSION ACCOMPLISHED AND VISION RENEWED
God is very much alive and well in Africa! Indeed, a new day is dawning, and the church is on the move and growing rapidly. The gates of hell shall not prevail, because the plans and purposes of God are for Africa’s good and not for evil, for a hope and a future. “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for Africa”.
On our recent outreach mission to Nigeria and Kenya this fall, we were amazed and humbled by the way God used our seemingly insignificant efforts to extend His glorious saving grace to thousands. He healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, and set the demon possessed free.
Nigeria is a country ravaged by poverty and unrest. HIV/AIDS is taking a serious toll of both young and old alike, and there is a great need for education and health care. Fraud and mismanagement are rampant, and vigilante groups are on the rise. Militant Islamic groups seek to establish and enforce Sharia laws, even in states like Kaduna where there is a strong Christian presence. In Katsina State, the Islamic legal administrators recently sentenced a woman to be stoned to death for the crime of adultery. Violence and fear of death are a constant threat to those living in Nigeria. This was the reason for us embarking on this mission trip focused on “TAKING BACK THE COMMUNITY FOR CHRIST 2002”.
We planned a holistic community outreach comprising of two evangelistic city crusades, together with free medical treatments and feeding programs. We targeted 5000 young people, 5000 widows, and thousands of others from all walks of life. We also held youth conflict seminars and leadership training programs for pastors and Christian workers in Umuahia, Ohafia and Kaduna. Over three thousand people responded to the message of salvation by giving their lives to Christ during the open-air campaigns in Umuahia, Ohafia and Kurmin Iya, Kaduna State. Eight hundred people received free medical treatment, and two thousand received free food. Over two thousand Bibles and four thousand Christian books were distributed to over five hundred pastors and Christian workers. We met with three thousand widows and are presently organising a Community Farming project for them. We also provided desperately needed leadership and discipleship training to better equip pastors and Christian workers.
Apart from the team commitment to evangelism, training and community programs, they also shared individually their personal belongings including money and clothing together with the message of hope with the destitute, AIDS orphans and children who have lost their mothers.
During this outreach, violence erupted over the Miss World contest destroying more than ten churches and leaving many of the people of Kaduna homeless or dead.
In both Nigeria and Kenya, we have seen vigorous believing churches emerging, strong in the Scripture and outreach, fervent in prayer and intercession, courageous against the powers of darkness and expectant of miracles.
In Nigeria for example, a new sense of strong evangelical Pentecostalism has emerged over the past number of years despite persecution and intimidation. Also the vision for mission is growing, and the number of Nigerian missionaries and mission agencies are steadily increasing. Many Nigerian missionaries have a strong emphasis on Muslims and unreached people groups.
From Nigeria we went to Kitale, Kenya, where we held leadership training seminars for over thirty five pastors and Christian workers, and also a weekend program at Moi University, Eldoret for Christian professors and university staff. During the last week of our mission, we held a revival meeting in Kitui. In our Children Centre in Kipsonga through our “Child Sponsor Program”, we now have a feeding and caring program where fifty needy and destitute children and nine teenagers receive food on a daily basis. We are also able to provide some of them with shelter, medical help and education, and are in the process of providing overnight shelter and an on-site Nursery school.
More people are needed to sponsor children on a monthly basis. Our East Africa Directors, Ed and Nancy Cahill, would love to hear from those who would be interested in helping. They can be reached at (604) 886 – 2904.
As testimonies of God’s healing and saving grace continues to follow us back to our Vancouver office, we reflect on what God is accomplishing in Africa, and acknowledge His strength and the vital importance of prayer and financial support for the work of Link International Ministries.
This year, 2003, we have been invited to conduct further similar programs in other cities across Africa. I would challenge all those with a burden for the lost to be part of this great ministry by either going with us, supporting those who go, or becoming one of our prayer partners.
Many new Christians in Africa literally lay down their lives for Christ as they face threats of death and violence; especially those that have converted from Islam whom are often ostracised by their families and communities. What about us? What can we lay down to further the Kingdom of God?
This latest mission has been successfully accomplished. God has encouraged and renewed my own vision, and I am very optimistic about the future. Yes! a new day is dawning, and God is very much alive in Africa!
By: Paul Ndukwe (Rev.)
Executive Director – Link International Ministries